Page 1

2 Arts & Entertainment Section

A weekly guide to music, theater, art, movies and more, edited by Rebecca Wallace



Right: Musician Steve Cowan in his Mountain View home studio.


Michelle Le

Below: This 1971 photo of musicians from The Ship shows, from left, Todd Bradshaw, Billy Panda, Steve Cowan, Mark Hamby and Albert Melshenker.


n the 1970s, a group of young men at the University of Illinois formed a folk-rock band. They played a series of campus gigs, toured the Midwest and cut a few albums before going their separate ways. It’s the same old story — except that after being apart for more than 30 years, they got the chance to do it again.

Local musician makes a reunion album — remotely — with former bandmates 35 years later

“People feel it’s difficult to go back and attain anywhere near the quality you had before,� said Steve Cowan, who sang and played guitar with the band and is now a Mountain View software engineer. But that’s what The Ship got to do. Cowan and six other men, now all in their (continued on next page)


Arts & Entertainment


Michelle Le

HOUSING DISCRIMINATION Steve Cowan holds an original copy of his band’s 1972 album “The Ship,� released by Elektra Records.


(continued from previous page)





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50s and 60s and living in various parts of the U.S., found their way back to the university in April 2008 for two heady days of rehearsal and a 20-song reunion show that made them wonder — could they get back together and do it all over again? Well, yes and no. The Ship released its fifth album, “All Come Home,� last December, but none of the musicians — Cowan, James Barton, Todd Bradshaw, Rick Frank, Mark Hamby and Billy Panda — ever sat down in a studio together to record. Taking advantage of free recording software, e-mail and other technology only dreamed of during the band’s heyday, the musicians laid down 12 original tracks in just over a year, working together remotely. “We probably sent 20 to 30 emails a day,� Cowan said. “I just didn’t have that work ethic when I was 22.� Typically, the lead singer for a given song would record one vocal track and one instrumental track and send it to the group. Then, everyone would try to add something. The result is an album with a wide range of styles and personalities represented, something that’s been true since the beginning. “One of the things that really distinguishes us is that we have so many different sounds,� Cowan said. Back in the ‘70s, that meant “people couldn’t take our songs and just immediately do them.� The first four songs on the album have four different lead singers. For the last song and title track, “All Come Home,� all six album contributors sing in harmony. The percussion is synthesized, but all other instruments heard on the album, including flute, saxophone, electric bass and mandocello, were recorded by the band. Most songs have 15 to 20 tracks each, Cowan said. With so much variety, some conflict was inevitable. “We would have disagreements, and we would just back away for a day or two,�

Cowan said. For Cowan, the hardest part was timing his recording so the neighbors opening their garage door couldn’t be heard in the background, he said. “That was my biggest fear.� Hamby, who now runs a brokerage firm in Seattle, pointed out another complication. “It’s weird to put out songs we’ve never really performed,� he said. As for reconnecting with the old music, Hamby said, “I got it out and thought, hey, some of this stuff is halfway decent.� Today, Hamby performs with a vintage party band, but he had lost touch with songwriting until the reunion. “Without a group waiting for you, songwriting is a silly exercise,� he said. Back in the day, the band’s name came from its founding effort, a 1970 folk opera called “The Ship� that was the reason a handful of independent campus singers/songwriters got together. After working on those first songs for five straight months, the band started performing together in 1971. The shows “sold out like that,� Cowan said with a snap of his fingers. The band was able to charge $3 a ticket, which he said was “on the high end for concerts back then.� The band stood out for a few reasons, Cowan said. “We had the really lush harmonies, we rehearsed a lot, we were all songwriters and we could all sing lead,� he said. Before long, The Ship had a recording contract with Elektra Records, which Cowan called “the recording label for folk music.� From the Illinois cornfields, the group traveled to a studio on La Cienega Boulevard in Los Angeles, recording alongside some of their musical idols such as Bread. Cowan left the group in 1973, but a few, including original members Hamby and Panda, kept at it until 1977. In that period, the group released another album, recorded a handful of advertising jingles and played gigs around the Midwest. Times were lean.

“Next week we could be plumbers,� one band member was quoted as saying in a 1972 Chicago Tribune article. The story was headlined “The Ship: Still no breeze, but still afloat.� Hamby remembers getting up early on Saturdays to hear the group’s Kellogg’s jingle. “Then we’d get royalty checks the next month and put food on the table,� he said. Then, in 1977, one member got a permanent job offer he couldn’t pass up. “We looked at each other and said, well, maybe the jig is up,� Hamby said. “Maybe it was time to think about what to do with at least part of the rest of our lives.� “It was friendly,� he added. “We said it’s been great, see you whenever.� More than 30 years later, “April On The Prairie,� the first song on the new album “All Come Home,� reflects the group’s appreciation of its second chance. “This is the story of our getting back together,� Cowan said. Later, “Take A Number� reminds listeners that everyone’s got problems. “It’s the ultimate party tune,� Panda said. “It sounds like we got drunk and went to a club and played.� Panda, who majored in music, now works as a studio musician in Nashville. “The soft tissue eroded, but it was astonishing how easy it was to fall back into our old rhythms,� he said. “I hadn’t talked to some of these guys since 1975, and it just didn’t matter.� No touring or concerts are in the works, and the band hasn’t discussed the possibility of another album, Cowan said. For now, “All Come Home� is available for $12.97 through CD Baby. There’s a link on the band’s website at theshipmusic. com, which also lists earlier members of the band who didn’t take part in the reunion recording. “We’re not going to make our money back,� Cowan said, “but that’s never been the purpose of it.� N

Arts & Entertainment


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From left, actors from the cast of “The 39 Steps� are: Rebecca Dines, Mark Anderson Phillips, Dan Hiatt and Cassidy Brown.

A finely tuned blizzard TheatreWorks’ whirlwind Hitchcock parody features crack comic timing and theatrical invention by Kevin Kirby


n 1935, a young Alfred Hitchcock gave the moviegoing public a taste of things to come with his adaptation of John Buchan’s novel “The 39 Steps.â€? With its reluctant though exceptionally dashing hero, its enigmatic women, its harrowing chase sequences and its razor-close escapes, “The 39 Stepsâ€? embodied many of the elements that came to define the great director’s style. Seventy years later, English actor and playwright Patrick Barlow adapted the story yet again, this time for the stage, using the Hitchcock film as a springboard for an evening of comic mayhem. While sticking amazingly close to the film’s plot, Barlow has utterly subverted the spirit of the piece, creating a blazingly funny parody of the noir thriller genre. It is that version of “The 39 Stepsâ€? that opened last weekend at TheatreWorks, in a production that is as close to perfect as anyone could wish. Directed by company founder Robert Kelley, the play is a finely tuned blizzard of crack comic timing and theatrical invention. Hitchcock’s works have long been a favorite target of parodists. (Readers of a certain age may recall a “Monsterpiece Theaterâ€? segment on “Sesame Streetâ€? in which Grover counts his way to the top of 39 stairs.) Perhaps this is because Hitchcock’s films have burrowed so deeply into the popular consciousness. Cinematic tropes that he pioneered have since become so clichĂŠd that his films — seen for the first time by a modern audience — seem almost to parody themselves. With Patrick Barlow’s adaptation, there’s no “almostâ€? about it. Barlow’s “39 Stepsâ€? is a flat-out, noholds-barred spoof. But the genius of the piece lies in its unabashed theatricality. Most of the gags —

THEATER REVIEW with the exception of some clever references to other Hitchcock classics such as “North by Northwest� and “Strangers on a Train� — are less about Hitchcock’s film than they are about the sheer lunacy of presenting a fast-paced espionage thriller on a nearly bare stage with only four actors. Kelley has assembled an exceptional cast, led by Mark Anderson Phillips as Richard Hannay, a man capable of foiling an international spy ring with a combination of wits, pluck and a tobacco pipe concealed in his jacket pocket. Phillips is appropriately square-jawed and steelyeyed, and he maintains the believability of Hannay’s perilous journey no matter how much zaniness may surround it. Playing multiple female roles is Rebecca Dines, an actress with great comic chops and a flair for the ‘30s noir style. She appears first as the sultry Annabella Schmidt, a spy of eastern European descent who follows Hannay home from the theater and ends up dead in his living room, a knife in her back and a map of Scotland clutched in her hand. Later, she is Pamela, the classic headstrong Hitchcock blonde. Handcuffed to Hannay as he tries to elude trained killers and outsmart enemy agents, she is the perfect romantic foil. The cast is rounded out by Cassidy Brown and Dan Hiatt, who play all of the story’s remaining characters. These include a milkman, a taciturn crofter, a pair of ancient political boosters, a Scottish hotelier and his wife, any number of policemen (both genuine and counterfeit), and the mysterious Professor Jordan. Much of the show’s humor derives

from the duo’s breakneck character changes, as each dons a succession of hats, wigs, beards, coats, frocks and accents with dizzying speed. The play’s most memorable bravura moment comes in Act I, when Brown and Hiatt play two constables, two newsboys and a pair of underwear salesmen — simultaneously, mind you — in a whirlwind of costume swaps, tricky stage choreography and nonstop jabber. But as brilliant as the performances are, the actors could neither sustain the humor nor create the necessary illusions (of speed, height, inclement weather, etc.) without some equally brilliant work from the show’s designers and technical crew. Joe Ragey’s set is a defunct vaudeville-era theater, in which steamer trunks become a train, a rolling costume rack becomes a full regimental bagpipe band, and a bit of stage fog stands in for a trackless moor. Costumer B. Modern has pared down the essence of each character to a bare minimum, allowing the actors to switch roles at (literally) the drop of a hat. Lighting designer Steven B. Mannshardt and sound designer Christopher Graham also make invaluable contributions, as sound effects, shifting lights and even shadow puppets do their part to bring this story to the stage. You don’t need to be a Hitchcock fan to appreciate TheatreWorks’ production of “The 39 Steps.� Anyone with a love of theater and an appreciation for the absurd cannot help but enjoy the crackerjack performances and unfettered theatricality of this ingenious spoof. N What: “The 39 Steps,� a play presented by TheatreWorks Where: Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts, 500 Castro St. When: Through Feb. 13, with shows Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 7:30 p.m., Thursdays and Fridays at 8 p.m., Saturdays at 2 and 8 p.m., and Sundays at 2 and 7 p.m. Cost: Tickets are $24-$79, with discounts for students and seniors. Info: Go to or call 650-463-1960.



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Arts & Entertainment










Two Children’s Concerts with Nancy Cassidy

Joyce Goldschmid

The Palo Alto Woman’s Club presents Nancy Cassidy in Concert 10:30 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. Saturday, February 5th Woman’s Club of Palo Alto 475 Homer Avenue Downtown Palo Alto

Trish Tillman as Joy Gresham and Fred Sharkey as C.S. Lewis in “Shadowlands.�

Proceeds will benefit local charities through the Philanthropy Committee of the Woman’s Club

A story of the head and heart

Tickets are $10 per person and sold in advance To order tickets please send a check to Diana Wahler P.O. Box 1059, Palo Alto, CA 94302 by Feb. 2 Tickets will be held at Will Call the day of the concert

Palo Alto Players actors bring spirit to the ‘Shadowlands’ tale of intellect and faith

Call 659-855-9700 for more information

by Chad Jones

This space donated by the Palo Alto Weekly as a community service


2011 Wallace Stegner Lectures Series Sponsor: Jean Lane, in memory of Bill Lane

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hen it comes right down to it, William Nicholson’s play “Shadowlands� concerns the evolution of a lecture. We hear the acclaimed writer C.S. Lewis — yes, the Narnia guy — give the same lecture three times in the play, with each version varying slightly based on what’s going on in his personal life. The first time we hear him expound on why God, who is supposed to be loving and benevolent, allows mankind to suffer, Lewis is a complacent bachelor. He and his older brother, Warnie, live happily on their own in Oxford, and Lewis rules the intellectual roost among his Oxonian cronies. Lines like “Pain is God’s megaphone to rouse a deaf world� and “Suffering is God’s love in action� ring like the words of a man who is offering hollow comfort and trying to sell a few books. The second time we hear the “pain is good� lecture, Lewis is, perhaps for the first time in his life, experiencing bone-deep pain. He realizes how incomplete and possibly false his words are. And the final time — at the end of the play, naturally — he’s a different man. He has realized something altogether different about pain. So we learn something interesting in “Shadowlands,� and that is never to believe a lecture until you know what’s going on in the speaker’s love life. OK, that might not be entirely true, but that’s how Nicholson’s drama is shaped. He uses the lectures to show us Lewis’ emotional growth, and it’s effective to a degree, but it’s a creaky structure on top of an already rather conventional play that trades heavily on Lewis’ celebrity. Born as a British made-for-TV

THEATER REVIEW movie in 1985, the teleplay was turned by Nicholson into a stage play four years later. After runs in London’s West End and on Broadway, the script hit the big screen with Anthony Hopkins as Lewis and Debra Winger as Joy Gresham, the Jewish-Communist-ChristianAmerican woman who changes his life. The most interesting thing about the play, which is back on stage courtesy of the Palo Alto Players, is the way it wrestles with the central idea of faith. From his cozy den, Lewis, played here with grounded believability by Fred Sharkey, seems to have it all figured out. He cranks out popular children’s books and religious-themed treatises while sipping a “decent claret� and dressing in a silk writer’s robe that would please Noel Coward. Lewis is an intellectual, and many of his views were just that: intellectual. Then he meets Gresham, played with admirable spark by Trish Tillman. She’s essentially a fan who struck up an epistolary relationship with the famous writer before she showed up in Oxford for tea. With a sharp wit, a self-deprecating manner and her young son at her side, Joy ingratiates herself into

Lewis’ life. The writer’s musty Oxford comrades don’t understand the hold she has on him, but almost to a man, these characters are superfluous to the play, so who cares what they think? The friendship between Joy and the man known to his friends as Jack deepens, but Act 1 ends with Joy having a pang of hip pain. That’s like seeing a gun in the first act of an Ibsen play. You know that thing will be going off by the final curtain. Sure enough, just like Greta Garbo coughing in “Camille,� Joy’s hip pain takes the story into an entirely different direction. The intellectual becomes real. Emotion replaces brainy discussion. And the play, in effect, actually begins. Under the direction of Marilyn Langbehn, who helmed last season’s extraordinary “Rabbit Hole,� lead actors Sharkey and Tillman carry the play and nearly succeed in besting its conventions. Their scenes together crackle and make you wish they were in a play that offered a few more surprises and a little more depth. Lewis’ and Gresham’s is an unconventional love story that cries out for a more unconventional telling. Nicholson never lets us forget that Lewis wrote “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.� In fact, Patrick Klein’s set is dominated by a giant wardrobe. Gresham’s son Douglas (the sympathetic Nathan Kaplan at last Sunday’s matinee — Ryan Kain alternates in the role), who is working his way through Lewis’ books, has several supposedly magical experiences in that wardrobe. But these flights of fancy never seem anything but inconsistent with the rather mundane tone of the rest of the play. “Shadowlands� could use a dose of fancy, anything to liven up the scenes in a gentleman’s club (or maybe it’s the Oxford faculty lounge) and Lewis’ drab living room. In the end, though, we get an intermittently interesting script that asks some compelling questions about faith and how we wrestle with it and, sometimes, how we find ways to bend it and shape it into everyday life. Pain, Lewis learns with Gresham’s help, is simply part of happiness. If you’re happy now, expect the pain later. It’s a fascinating notion and one everyone can relate to — even if you’re not a famous writer delivering a lecture. N What: “Shadowlands� by William Nicholson, presented by Palo Alto Players Where: Lucie Stern Theatre, 1305 Middlefield Road, Palo Alto When: Through Feb. 6, with 8 p.m. shows Thursday through Saturday and 2:30 p.m. matinees on Sundays Cost: Tickets are $30 general, and $26 for seniors and students on Thursdays and Sundays. Info: Go to or call 650329-0891.

More theater online Dragon Productions also recently opened Steven Dietz’s play “Private Eyes� in Palo Alto. To read Jeanie K. Smith’s review, which is expected to run in print in the Weekly next week, go to PaloAltoOnline. com and click on “Palo Alto Weekly� and then the Jan. 28 issue.


Palo Alto Historical Association presents a public program

“Paly High Football Over Time� Speaker: Earl Hansen !THLETIC$IRECTORAND (EAD#OACH 0ALO!LTO(IGH3CHOOL


Javier Bardem as a Barcelona bottom-feeder in “Biutiful.�

Biutiful --1/2

(Palo Alto Square) You know the old joke. Someone has hit what feels like rock bottom and asks, “How could things possibly be any worse?â€? Cue the driving rain. That’s about how it goes in “Biutiful,â€? the new film by Mexican director Alejandro GonzĂĄlez Iùårritu, but don’t expect to laugh. Iùårritu’s latest film ostensibly sets aside the “we’re all connectedâ€? narratives of “Amores Perros,â€? “21 Gramsâ€? and “Babelâ€? in favor of a focused character study, but it’s still got that Iùårritutiful stamp: His bleak films compose a sort of treasure hunt for hope, grace notes amid gravity. And they don’t get much more grave than “Biutiful,â€? the story of a man who learns that terminal prostate cancer is only the beginning (and end) of his troubles. Barcelona bottom-feeder Uxbal (Javier Bardem) feeds his family with odd jobs. He’s a broker between drug dealers and corrupt cops, a trafficker of illegal immigrants to sweatshops, and a psychic ministering to the bereaved. (As in Clint Eastwood’s “Hereafter,â€? we’re to accept that Uxbal’s power is real.) For Uxbal, it’s all about his young children, Ana (Hanaa Bouchaib) and Mateo (Guillermo Estrella), or at least it becomes all about them as he comes to understand that his time is severely limited. Devastated that he will become only a distant memory to Ana and Mateo, Uxbal puts enormous pressure on himself to protect their future and preserve his legacy. He can take no comfort from the children’s mother, Marambra (Maricel Ă lvarez), whose struggles with bipolar disorder and drug addiction have long since destroyed her marriage. Naturally, the screwturning pressures on Uxbal do

not create an environment conducive to success, and matters go from bad to worse on the way to the presumable worst of Uxbal succumbing to his disease. Ironically, there are fates worse than death for our tragic hero, who at least will find some peace in the end of misery. Audiences may feel the same way after the first 10 minutes of this 148-minute drama. Screenwriters Iùårritu, Armando Bo and NicolĂĄs Giacobone offer no whiff of comic relief, and there’s not much fresh air in Rodrigo Prieto’s perfectly sickly photography or the music of two-time Oscarwinning composer Gustavo Santaolalla. Though technically impeccable, “Biutifulâ€? improbably turns Barcelona into a previously unknown circle of hell. Most damagingly, “Biutifulâ€? doesn’t seem to have much to say about all this sadness, except that death, like love, makes us want to be better people. Certainly this is a meal we’ve swallowed before, and Iùårritu’s observations don’t bring much to the table. So why (oh why) would anyone want to take this two-and-a-half-hour tour of torment? The sole compelling reason for non-masochists is to revel in the fine acting of Javier Bardem, who gives an unimpeachably searing performance as a man who’s as unhappy as this film will make audiences. (But they may prefer to rent Bardem’s superior “The Sea Inside.â€?) Beyond that, I can only say that biuty is in the eye of the beholder. Rated R for disturbing images, language, some sexual content, nudity and drug use. Two hours, 28 minutes. — Peter Canavese

(Century 16, Century 20) Fans of Jason Statham’s bone-crunching “Transporter� franchise will get a kick out of this visceral and violent actioner. But a weak script, Statham’s wooden performance and a fumbled climax seriously deflate what could have been an explosive thriller. “The Mechanic� feels like it was built with spare parts — it has the body of a hot rod but the engine of a jalopy. Statham is “mechanic� (i.e., assassin) Arthur Bishop, a stoic tough guy whose emotions range from serious to ... well, that’s about it. Arthur’s well-planned executions have placed him at the top of the hit-man totem pole, above even his mentor, Harry McKenna (Donald Sutherland). When a hit is put out on Harry following a botched job, Arthur finds himself smack-dab in the middle of a sticky situation. And Harry’s murder leaves Arthur wondering whom to trust. Arthur hooks up with Harry’s son, Steve (Ben Foster), a misguided young man who drinks and smokes with wanton disregard for his liver and lungs. Arthur agrees to teach Steve his assassin ways so the wild-eyed youth can channel his pent-up anger — and dish out some vengeance on those responsible for his father’s slaying. Together the two take on a handful of contract killings before setting their sights on Harry’s former partner, Dean (Tony Goldwyn). Let the bullets fly. The spotty screenplay sways between intermittently clever dialogue and unbelievable plot points. The action scenes are edgy and intense, though the frenetic camerawork is often disorienting. Foster — still one of Hollywood’s best-kept secrets — easily steals the show with his magnetic performance, while Statham simply channels his Frank Martin character from the “Transporter� films. Statham can throw a wheelkick better than anybody, but I’m starting to wonder if that’s about the extent of his thespian skills. It’s difficult to sympathize with a character who shows little to no emotion. Statham and Foster make a charismatic tandem that could have had crowds cheering. But the film really starts to devolve after the second act, and Statham’s Arthur is not a particularly likable or admirable protagonist. Although the action is fastpaced and well choreographed, (continued on next page)

Coach Hansen, State Champion vikings

Sunday, January 30, 2011, 2:00 p.m. Lucie Stern Community Center, 1305 MiddleďŹ eld Road, Palo Alto 2EFRESHMENTSs.OADMISSIONCHARGE



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Movies (continued from previous page)

Fri & Sat 1/28-1.29 The Kings Speech 1:30, 4:20, 7:15, 10:00 Biutiful 1:15, 4:30, 8:00 Sun thru Thurs 1/30-2/3 The Kings Speech 1:30, 4:20, 7:15 Biutiful 1:15, 4:30, 8:00

the script and its under-developed characters leave much to be desired. Statham fans will enjoy







lence throughout, language, some sexual content and nudity. 1 hour, 40 minutes.

Rated R for strong brutal vio-

— Tyler Hanley

(Not Reviewed)

Century 20: 11:35 a.m.; 1, 2:20, 3:40, 4:50, 6:15, 7:30, 8:55 & 10:15 p.m.

The Prisoner of Zenda (1937)

Stanford Theatre: Sat.-Mon. at 5:35 & 9:15 p.m.

Century 16: 11:35 a.m.; 2:25, 5:15, 8 & 10:25 p.m.

Barney’s Version (R) (((

Guild Theatre: 1, 4, 7 & 9:50 p.m.

Biutiful (R) ((1/2

Palo Alto Square: 1:15, 4:30 & 8 p.m.

Black Swan (R) (((

Century 16: 11:40 a.m.; 2:20, 5, 7:40 & 10:15 p.m. Century 20: 12:05, 2:45, 5:20, 8 & 10:35 p.m.

The Rite (PG-13) Century 16: 11:20 a.m.; 2:05, 4:50, 7:55 & 10:35 p.m. Century 20: Noon, 1:15, 2:40, 4:05, 5:25, 6:55, 8:05, 9:35 & 10:45 p.m. (Not Reviewed)

Blue Valentine (R) ((((

Aquarius Theatre: 2, 4:30, 7 & 9:30 p.m. Century 20: 11:20 a.m.; 2, 4:45, 7:35 & 10:20 p.m.

Season of the Witch (PG-13) (Not Reviewed)

Century 16: 11:45 a.m.; 4:45 & 9:55 p.m.

The Company Men (R) ((1/2 Century 16: 12:50, 4:10, 7:10 & 9:45 p.m. Century 20: 11:55 a.m.; 2:35, 5:05, 7:40 & 10:10 p.m.

The Social Network (PG-13) (((1/2

Aquarius Theatre: 2:30, 5:30 & 8:30 p.m.

Country Strong (PG-13) (Not Reviewed)

Century 20: 11:40 a.m.; 2:25, 5:10, 7:55 & 10:40 p.m.

Special Agent (1935)

Stanford Theatre: Fri. at 6 & 9 p.m.

Dangerous (1935)

Stanford Theatre: Fri. at 7:30 p.m.

Tangled (PG) (((

The Dilemma (PG-13) (Not Reviewed)

Century 16: 11:50 a.m.; 2:30, 5:10, 7:50 & 10:30 p.m. Century 20: 11:15 a.m.; 1:50, 4:25, 7:05 & 9:45 p.m.

Century 16: In 3D at 12:30, 3:30, 6:20 & 8:45 p.m. Century 20: 11:25 a.m.; 4:15 & 9:30 p.m.; In 3D at 1:50 & 7 p.m.

Tron: Legacy (PG) ((1/2

The Fighter (R) ((1/2

Century 16: 12:10, 3:20, 6:40 & 9:40 p.m. Century 20: 11:50 a.m.; 2:55, 5:35 & 8:25 p.m.

Century 16: In 3D at 12:15, 3:10, 6:30 & 9:20 p.m. Century 20: In 3D at 11:45 a.m.; 2:40, 5:30 & 8:30 p.m.

True Grit (PG-13) (((

From Prada to Nada (PG-13) (Not Reviewed)

Century 16: 11:20 a.m.; 1:55, 4:30, 7:30 & 10:10 p.m. Century 20: 11:45 a.m.; 1:10, 2:25, 3:45, 5:05, 6:20, 7:40, 8:50 & 10:20 p.m.

Century 16: 11:25 a.m.; 2, 4:40, 7:15 & 9:50 p.m. Century 20: 11:15 a.m.; 1:55, 4:35, 7:20 & 10 p.m.

The Way Back (PG-13) (Not Reviewed)

Century 16: 12:20, 3:40, 7 & 10 p.m.

The Ghost Ship (1943)

Stanford Theatre: Thu. at 6:10 & 8:50 p.m.

The Green Hornet (PG-13) (1/2

Century 16: Noon, 3, 6:10 & 9:10 p.m.; In 3D at 1, 4, 7:20 & 10:05 p.m. Century 20: 1:15, 4:05, 7 & 9:50 p.m.; In 3D at 11:30 a.m.; 2:15, 5, 7:50 & 10:45 p.m.

The King’s Speech (R) (((1/2

Century 20: 11:20 a.m.; 2:10, 4:55, 7:45 & 10:25 p.m. Palo Alto Square: 1:30, 4:20, 7:15 & 10 p.m.

Century Cinema 16: 1500 N. Shoreline Blvd., Mountain View (800-326-3264) Century 20 Downtown: 825 Middlefield Road, Redwood City (800-326-3264)



This “Mechanic� could have been fixed with a few minor tweaks. Instead, it stalls.

MOVIE TIMES 127 Hours (R) (((


seeing the chiseled actor knock people senseless (and many will appreciate seeing his several shirtless scenes), but Foster is the one really worth watching.

The Leopard Man (1943)

Stanford Theatre: Thu. at 7:30 p.m.

Little Fockers (PG-13) (Not Reviewed)

Century 16: 2:15 & 7:25 p.m.

The Mark of Zorro (1940)

Stanford Theatre: Sat.-Mon. at 7:30 p.m.; Sat. & Sun. also at 3:50 p.m.

The Mechanic (R) ((

Century 16: 12:05, 2:40, 5:05, 7:45 & 10:20 p.m. Century 20: 11:40 a.m.; 1:05, 2:15, 3:30, 4:40, 5:50, 7:15, 8:20, 9:40 & 10:40 p.m.

No Strings Attached (R)

Century 16: 11:30 a.m.; 2:10, 4:55, 7:35 & 10:25 p.m.

-Peter Travers, ROLLING STONE

( Skip it (( Some redeeming qualities ((( A good bet (((( Outstanding Aquarius: 430 Emerson St., Palo Alto (266-9260)

CinĂŠArts at Palo Alto Square: 3000 El Camino Real, Palo Alto (493-3456) Guild: 949 El Camino Real, Menlo Park (266-9260) Stanford: 221 University Ave., Palo Alto (324-3700) Internet address: For show times, plot synopses, trailers and more information about films playing, go to

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and Byambasuren Sharav at 7:00 p.m. -90+(@-,)9<(9@!74 *96::*<99,5;: New music from Central and East Asia with soloists from Japan and Mongolia +PURLSZWPLS(\KP[VYP\T ;PJRL[Z!  Z[\KLU[Z  &$#$68$06=:14.9%.>:&%& '1:0)6;8*! %6 (


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:(;<9+(@-,)9<(9@!74 (*,5;9(3(:0(5*,3,)9(;065 Dances from Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Afghanistan, and Mongolia, and musicians from Mongolia and Shangri-la +PURLSZWPLS(\KP[VYP\T ;PJRL[Z!  Z[\KLU[Z 

;0*2,;:! Stanford Ticket OfďŹ ce: 650-725-2787 For more information: :765:69: *633()69(;69:!Stanford University Department of Music; OfďŹ ce of the Dean, Stanford University School of Humanities and Science; Stanford Institute for Creativity and the Arts (SiCa); the Center for East Asian Studies at Stanford (CEAS); the Division of International, Comparative, and Area Studies (ICA) at Stanford; the Stanford Center for Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies (CREEES); the Department of Art and Art History at Stanford; the Albert Yu and Mary Bechmann Foundation; U.C. Berkeley International House, U.C. Berkeley Institute of East Asian Studies, U.C. Berkeley Center for Buddhist Studies, and U.C. Berkeley Department of Music

Eating Out

Buy 1 entree and get the 2nd one

with coupon (Dinner Only)


369 Lytton Avenue Downtown Palo Alto 462-5903


Veronica Weber

Grilled salmon wrapped in grape leaves is dressed with raisins and pine nuts, then served on a bed of pearl couscous.

Room for improvement Stellar wine cellar, chic ambiance, but Lavanda needs some tightening up by Dale F. Bentson ometimes that first date However, while I found the is magical. You think a decor chic and appealing, the long-term relationship wine list terrific, the wait staff could develop. The object of first-rate and the Mediterraattention, though, is merely a nean-themed menu interesting mirage, reflecting your own enough, the food had its ups dreams and not reality. On sub- and downs. There were also sequent dates, you notice the bothersome issues that left me little things: the stained shirt, wondering. the not-quite-fresh breath, the Besides the regular menu, scuffed shoes. You decide to there was a loose-leaf page remain just friends. of Specialties from Croatia. My relationship with La- I thought it was a monthly vanda in downtown Palo Alto â&#x20AC;&#x153;foods of the wine worldâ&#x20AC;? prowent something like that. I gram Lavanda was running. looked forward to reviewing Turns out it isnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t. Dvornik hails the restaurant that opened in from Croatia and his native 2002 and has received many cuisine is very much Mediterwine and food accolades, in- ranean. The additional page cluding winning Wine Specta- was meant as a permanent adtor magazineâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;Best of Award dition to Lavandaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s oeuvre. I of Excellenceâ&#x20AC;? for five con- wasnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t aware of that until insecutive years. Bruce Schmidt terviewing Schmidt just before and Luca Dvornik manage the going to press. operations. My first date at Lavanda was


for lunch. I ordered the fried Laughing Bird shrimp poâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;boy with remoulade sauce, romaine and pickled onions ($12). It was one of the best sandwiches Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve ever eaten. The soft but crusty bread, from Panorama Baking Company in San Francisco, made the sandwich excel. The shrimp was delightfully spicy, the sauce just right. But the accompanying fries were limp and unappealing. On a subsequent dinner date, we were shown to a back table despite the restaurant being nearly empty at an early dinner hour. I faced the wall so my companion could have a view. I didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t mind so much sitting at a back table, but to the left of the wall was the passageway to the restrooms, and a small space where the staff hung their coats and the restaurant stored extra chairs. There was a curtain that could have been drawn that would have lessened the visual distress, but alas, I felt I was eating in the storeroom. The menu offered about a dozen and a half hot and cold small plates, all amazingly priced at $5, a great value. The bruschetta with avocado, olive oil and sea salt was perched atop perfectly grilled bread â&#x20AC;&#x201D; a successful derivation of the classic tomato-based bruschetta. Other small plates included grilled sardines, charred squid, fried okra chips that were finger-lickinâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; tasty, a Croatian pepper-and-eggplant relish and roasted-lamb spare ribs in lemon au jus that were a tad too fatty for my taste. The farinata, or chickpea pancake, with tapenade was delicious. Moving to bigger plates, the grilled salmon wrapped in grape leaves ($24) was mouthwatering with raisins and pine nuts over a bed of couscous and grilled vegetables. It was an enticing plate with harmonious flavors, textures and aromas. The raisins added an unexpected sweetness to the slightly briny fish. My favorite dish was the roasted marinated half chicken ($23) with nearly caramelized onions, a wisp of garlic, diced roasted potatoes, lemon and olive oil. The succulent, meaty chicken had crisped skin and was rich and juicy inside. It was halved again for easy knife-and-fork manipulation. (continued on next page)

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Eating Out

It Happened in Palo Alto In 1890, what would later be Palo Alto was a whistle stop on the train line from San Francisco to San Jose. That year Mrs. Anna Probst Zschokke, a widow born in Bavaria, arrived with her daughter Irma, 4, and sons Arthur, 12, and Theodore, 15. The children were of school age, but the closest school was in MayďŹ eld, roughly todayâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s College Terrace area. That being about two miles from the area where Mrs. Zschokke settled, she began a drive for a new school. In 1893 volunteers erected Palo Altoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s ďŹ rst school, on Bryant Street near University Avenue, in just three days. It was necessarily a simple structure, two rooms separated by a partition with a common wood stove for heating. Its inadequacy was soon evident, and in 1893 Palo Altans passed a $15,000 bond issue for a combination primary â&#x20AC;&#x201C; high school, at Channing Avenue and Webster Street. Primary pupils occupied the lower ďŹ&#x201A;oor, high school pupils the upper. That building being also obviously inadequate, Mrs. Zschokke proposed to ďŹ nance construction of a new school, along the lines of a house, and move her family into it once the district built a permanent school. Friends tried to talk her out of it for ďŹ nancial reasons, but Mrs. Zschokkeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s deceased husband having come from an old family in Switzerland for which an emergency fund had been established centuries earlier, she was able to draw on the fund; an ancient Swiss tradition established Palo Altoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s ďŹ rst high school. The school, on Forest Street, opened in 1897. Mrs. Zschokkeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s action proved prescient, as Palo Alto did not construct a new high school, on Channing Avenue near the primary school, until 1901. Anna Zschokke is known as â&#x20AC;&#x153;the mother of Palo Alto Schools.â&#x20AC;? Another Zschokke residence stands today, on the northeast side of High Street southeast of Hamilton.

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The menu, though, lacked descriptions. Each dish simply listed ingredients with no adjectival embellishments. For example, the above chicken was listed as â&#x20AC;&#x153;Maryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Roasted Marinated Half Chicken with Spring Onion & Garlic, Potatoes, Lemon & Olive Oil.â&#x20AC;? The components were fine but why would I choose a dish based just on a list of ingredients? There was nothing to entice, to whet the appetite. It was a disservice to the kitchen. The New York steak ($28) was served with blue-cheese butter, a head of roasted garlic, truffled mashed potatoes and creamed spinach. A tender cut of meat, perfectly prepared and quite the bargain for a quality steak these days. Handkerchiefs ($17), technically fazzoletti, were little triangles of pasta, dressed with a rich, meaty ragu of beef, tomatoes, vegetables and olive oil, capped with a shower of Parmesan. There was no holding back on the meat in this thick sauce; it was extravagant and the dish was satisfying. But the house-made pumpkin gnocchi ($18) with Gorgonzola cream, walnuts, fried sage and cinnamon was dreadful. The gnocchi were dense and chewy

and the Gorgonzola overwhelmed any hint of pumpkin flavor. The color was an unappetizing gray and the consistency was more Elmerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s glue than anything edible. I sent the dish away and the kitchen quickly prepared the handkerchiefs instead. For dessert, the warm raisinbread pudding ($8) with vanilla-bean crème anglaise was delicious, as was the vanilla-bean crème brĂťlĂŠe ($8). The pumpkin cheesecake ($9) with caramel sauce and warm apple kuchen with whipped cream ($8) were both very good. The warm pear tart with vanilla ice cream ($9) wasnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t as successful. The pears were underripe, and, when baked, yielded no juices to caramelize and run through the pastry. The tart was dry and flavorless. The impressive wine list is broad and deep. Besides featuring big bruiser Bordeaux and deliriously expensive Burgundies, the list contains scores of worthy, affordable wines. The good selection of wines by the glass is reasonably priced. Besides the disastrous gnocchi (which should never have left the kitchen), there were a few other noticeable blemishes at Lavanda. The bathrooms were below acceptable for a restaurant of that

caliber. No excuses: They should be maintained throughout the evening. One wine menu I was handed was dilapidated with a shopworn cover and brittle plastic-covered pages. I would have been hardpressed to want to choose a $500 bottle of wine from those pages. Finally, and this might be splitting hairs, but the restaurantâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s website contains a great deal of outdated information. I donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t know if itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s economics or a general slackness, but Lavanda needs some tightening up. N Lavanda 185 University Ave. Palo Alto 650-321-3514 Lunch: Weekdays 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Dinner: Mon.-Sat. 5-10 p.m.; Sun. 5-9 p.m.

 Reservations  Credit cards  

Lot Parking Alcohol

 Wine  Highchairs  Wheelchair access

Banquet Catering Outdoor seating Noise level: Noisy Bathroom Cleanliness: Fair

*>œÊÌœÊ7iiŽÞÊUÊ>˜Õ>ÀÞÊÓn]ÊÓ䣣ÊU Page 41

Page 42ÊUÊ>˜Õ>ÀÞÊÓn]ÊÓ䣣ÊUÊ*>œÊÌœÊ7iiŽÞ

*>œÊÌœÊ7iiŽÞÊUÊ>˜Õ>ÀÞÊÓn]ÊÓ䣣ÊU Page 43

PIZZA Pizza Chicago 424-9400 4115 El Camino Real, Palo Alto This IS the best pizza in town

of the week

Spot A Pizza 324-3131 115 Hamilton Ave, Palo Alto Voted Best Pizza in Palo Alto



Armadillo Willyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s 941-2922

Peking Duck 321-9388

1031 N. San Antonio Rd., Los Altos

151 S. California Avenue, Palo Alto

Range: $5.00-13.00

We also deliver.

Hobeeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s 856-6124 4224 El Camino Real, Palo Alto Also at Town & Country Village, Palo Alto 327-4111

Su Hong â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Menlo Park Dining Phone: 323â&#x20AC;&#x201C;6852


8 years in a row!

Green Elephant Gourmet


(650) 494-7391 Burmese & Chinese Cuisine

Darbar Indian Cuisine 321-6688

3950 Middlefield Rd., Palo Alto

129 Lytton, Downtown Palo Alto

(Charleston Shopping Center)

Lunch Buffet M-F; Open 7 days

Dine-In, Take-Out, Local Delivery-Catering

Chef Chuâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s (650) 948-2696

Janta Indian Restaurant 462-5903



Thaiphoon Restaurant 323-7700 543 Emerson St., Palo Alto Full Bar, Outdoor Seating Best Thai Restaurant in Palo Alto 5 Years in a Row, 2006-2010

Spalti Ristorante 327-9390 417 California Ave, Palo Alto

Jing Jing 328-6885

Ă?ÂľĂ&#x2022;Â&#x2C6;Ă&#x192;Â&#x2C6;Ă&#x152;iĂ&#x160;Â&#x153;Â&#x153;`Ă&#x160;UĂ&#x160;"Ă&#x2022;Ă&#x152;`Â&#x153;Â&#x153;Ă&#x20AC;Ă&#x160; Â&#x2C6;Â&#x2DC;Â&#x2C6;Â&#x2DC;}

443 Emerson St., Palo Alto

Authentic Szechwan, Hunan Food To Go, Delivery

JAPANESE & SUSHI Fuki Sushi 494-9383

Mingâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s 856-7700 1700 Embarcadero East, Palo Alto

New Tung Kee Noodle House

Siam Orchid 325-1994 496 Hamilton Ave., Palo Alto Organic Thai Free Delivery to Palo Alto/Stanford/Menlo Park Order online at

4119 El Camino Real, Palo Alto Open 7 days a Week



Sundance the Steakhouse 321-6798 1921 El Camino Real, Palo Alto Lunch: Mon-Fri 11:30 am-2:00pm Dinner: Mon-Thu 5:00-10:00pm Fri-Sat 5:00-10:30pm, Sun 5:00-9:00pm

520 Showers Dr., MV in San Antonio Ctr. Voted MV Voice Best â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;01, â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;02, â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;03 & â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;04

Palo Alto Sol 328-8840

Prices start at $4.75

408 California Ave, Palo Alto



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Scottâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Seafood 323-1555 #1 Town & Country Village, Palo Alto Open 7 days a week serving breakfast, lunch and dinner Happy Hour 7 days a week 4-7 pm Full Bar, Banquets, Outdoor Seating

Lunch Buffet M-F; Organic Veggies

2008 Best Chinese MV Voice & PA Weekly

Cookâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Seafood 325-0604 751 El Camino Real, Menlo Park Seafood Dinners from $6.95 to $10.95

369 Lytton Ave., Downtown Palo Alto

1067 N. San Antonio Road on the corner of El Camino, Los Altos


To Go: 322â&#x20AC;&#x201C;4631 Winner, Palo Alto Weekly â&#x20AC;&#x153;Best Ofâ&#x20AC;?


Trader Vicâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s 849-9800 4269 El Camino Real, Palo Alto Dinner Mon-Thurs 5-10pm; Fri-Sat 5-11pm; Sun 4:30 - 9:30pm Available for private luncheons Lounge open nightly Happy Hour Mon-Fri 4-6 pm

Siam Orchid is an organic ďŹ ne dining Thai restaurant offering modern Thai fusion. We provide dine-in, private parties, pickup, delivery and catering. 496 Hamilton Ave. Palo Alto, CA 94301 Phone: 650.325.1994 Fax: 650. 325.1991

Search a complete listing of local restaurant reviews by location or type of food on

Cover Story

Gunn High School students (from left) James Perng, Dilip Shekhar, David Oyer, Amrita Moitra (standing) and Jennifer Chang practice a Parliamentary-style debate.


Finding a voice, head to head

From â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;ego-crushingâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; moments to state championships, high school debaters take risks, earn confidence Story by Chris Kenrick. Photos by Veronica Weber.


t Club Day her freshman year, Palo Alto High School student Julia Lee enthusiastically signed up for longboarding. Or so she thought. She never heard back from the long-skateboard group, but she soon began receiving e-mails from the Debate Team. She decided to â&#x20AC;&#x153;just go with it.â&#x20AC;? From that random beginning, Lee, now a sophomore, has become what her coach describes as a â&#x20AC;&#x153;really good, committedâ&#x20AC;? debater, pushing the boundaries of traditional debate forms. Lee is one of 87 students on the fast-growing Paly Debate Team, which meets for two intensive eve-

nings a week to prepare â&#x20AC;&#x153;casesâ&#x20AC;? to go head to head with debaters from other schools. On weekends, team members often can be found â&#x20AC;&#x153;dressed for successâ&#x20AC;? and flying around the country to match wits with counterparts as far flung as the Bronx High School of Science or Alta, Utah. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It used to be really hard for me to speak in front of people,â&#x20AC;? said Lee, whose first language is Korean. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I was really self-conscious about my accent. I didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t know what to say; words wouldnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t come into my head. â&#x20AC;&#x153;But practicing made me better, and now Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m not afraid to go in front of people and talk to them.â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;We have a lot of people who

joined to get over their shyness and it really helps you with that,â&#x20AC;? Paly debater Esha Datta, a sophomore, said of the program, coached by Jennie Savage. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t know a debater now whoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s scared of getting in front of a classroom and talking about anything,â&#x20AC;? Datta said. Across town at Gunn High School, about 50 students participate in a similarly engaging â&#x20AC;&#x201D; but far different â&#x20AC;&#x201D; kind of debate program. While Palyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s team relishes the travel, the high-stakes competition and some of the most arcane and technical debate forms, Gunnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s team focuses on local tournaments and forms of debate that are more comprehensible to the uninitiated.

â&#x20AC;&#x153;We do whatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s called â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;slow debateâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; or â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;league debate,â&#x20AC;&#x2122;â&#x20AC;? Gunn debate coach Hoon Ko explained. Ko said Gunnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s thriving Model United Nations Club â&#x20AC;&#x153;actually is more reflective of the overall passion at Gunn for debate. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re very much tied to the educational goals of being able to speak to the average person, to have a variety of different skills to explain to somebody who doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t know anything about the subject.â&#x20AC;? To the uninitiated, the numerous categories of speech and debate can be confusing. Some categories, such as â&#x20AC;&#x153;impromptu speaking,â&#x20AC;? seem self-explanatory. At a recent Paly practice, students were given three random

words â&#x20AC;&#x201D; â&#x20AC;&#x153;garbage,â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;stoplightâ&#x20AC;? and â&#x20AC;&#x153;burritoâ&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x201D; and had two minutes to choose one and prepare a fiveminute speech about it. Other categories demand more specific knowledge and experience. Paly debaters on the technical end engage in a practice known as â&#x20AC;&#x153;spreadingâ&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x201D; speaking at an incomprehensible rate of 380 words per minute to get arguments on the record in the allowable time frame. Only trained judges can understand the high-speed blur. Like Paly coach Savage, Gunnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Ko fell in love with debate during high school. As years went by, he found himself applying the skills (continued on next page)

*>Â?Â&#x153;Ă&#x160;Â?Ă&#x152;Â&#x153;Ă&#x160;7iiÂ&#x17D;Â?Ă&#x17E;Ă&#x160;UĂ&#x160;>Â&#x2DC;Ă&#x2022;>Ă&#x20AC;Ă&#x17E;Ă&#x160;Ă&#x201C;n]Ă&#x160;Ă&#x201C;䣣Ă&#x160;U Page 45

Cover Story (continued from previous page)

At Palo Alto High School (from left), Steven Hu, debate coach Jennie Savage, Josh Arfin and Ethan Cohen practice a policy debate.

heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;d learned to a variety of life situations. Now a software consultant with a Palo Alto tech company, heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s coached debate on the side for 18 years, the last five at Gunn. He also coaches debaters at Sacred Heart Prep. â&#x20AC;&#x153;In almost every job posting these days seeking a leader, a manager, a director, one of the most important things stressed is effective communication skills,â&#x20AC;? Ko said, speaking of the knowledge he tries to impart to students. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re looking for the ability to explain something concisely â&#x20AC;&#x201D; the ability to review large amounts of information and focus on the relevant, to be able to say something in 45 seconds that gets to the heart of an issue.â&#x20AC;? Savage, a former Capitol Hill legislative director and now parent of a Palo Alto elementary school student, is equally passionate about the value of debate. In her six years of coaching at Paly, the team has blossomed.

It took more than a year to get a diagnosis. When I went to Stanfordâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Dermatology Clinic, I finally found a dermatologist who truly listened to what I saidâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;and then actually DID something about it. â&#x20AC;&#x201D;Cindy W., Stanford patient

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The nearly 150 students on the Gunn and Paly debate teams are a varied crew. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I have introverts, extroverts, nerds, jocks, lacrosse players, football players, people who star in the band, the vice president of the student body â&#x20AC;&#x201D; everybody from all sorts of circles,â&#x20AC;? Savage said.

â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;We have a lot of people who joined to get over their shyness and it really helps you with that.â&#x20AC;&#x2122; â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Esha Datta, Paly sophomore debater â&#x20AC;&#x153;The one thing theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve got in common is insatiable intellectual curiosity. Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s the only common thread.â&#x20AC;? Gunn sophomore Negin Behzadian was a recent arrival from Iran when she stumbled into debate last year. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I was just that kind of lonely person over there, not confident of myself, new to the whole American educational system,â&#x20AC;? said Behzadian, who speaks multiple languages. One of her friends needed a debate partner and she agreed to join. She is now a seasoned debater in the style known as â&#x20AC;&#x153;Parli,â&#x20AC;? for Parliamentary, in which students are given a topic â&#x20AC;&#x201D; and just 20 minutes to prepare their cases. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I feel really good after a round. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve tried to prove a point, stand up for myself,â&#x20AC;? Behzadian said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s really enjoyable to find out what other people are thinking, get to know a lot about whatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s going and simply get confidence.â&#x20AC;? Like many debaters, Paly senior Lucas Chan was drawn to debate because he loves a good argument. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve always been told that Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m argumentative, good and bad, so I joined the debate team with the thought of becoming a lawyer,â&#x20AC;? he said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It seemed like an activity where I could pursue whatever type of intellectual curiosity I had, and also something I could be good at â&#x20AC;&#x201D; I didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t see myself getting much playing time on the basketball team. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Debate is probably the best decision Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve ever made in high school â&#x20AC;&#x201D; itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s just really, really interesting.â&#x20AC;? A specialist in the debate form called Lincoln-Douglas, in which topics supplied by the National Forensic League change every two months, Chan said a debater must prepare for â&#x20AC;&#x153;every nuance of a topic thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s possible. ... â&#x20AC;&#x153;I have to be prepared to negate the topic, affirm the topic and anything in between,â&#x20AC;? he said.


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omputers and the Internet have drastically changed debating, once dominated by stacks of 3-by-5 cards with meticulous notes culled from hours in a library or reading reference books. When assigned a topic, say the â&#x20AC;&#x153;morality and efficacy of economic sanctions,â&#x20AC;? Chan said he first turns to Wikipedia. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Every term, every noun, term of art â&#x20AC;&#x201D; such as â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;heavily indebted

Cover Story

Jennifer Chang, right, makes a rebuttal against the affirmative side, represented by James Perng, left, and Dilip Shekhar during a practice parliamentary debate at Gunn High School. poor countriesâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; â&#x20AC;&#x201D; every verb that can be combined with a noun that might be relevant, you â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Wikiâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; it,â&#x20AC;? Chan said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Even though they claim (Wikipedia) is inaccurate, those claims are unfounded because it has strong community standards.â&#x20AC;? Chan and other debaters also get access to briefs and analyses written by educators at other schools, who produce and circulate those documents whenever a new topic comes out. After Wikipedia, Chan said, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Google Scholar is quite possibly

the best friend in the world.â&#x20AC;? Many other online scholarly sources, such as LexisNexis and JSTOR, also are well-used by debaters.

â&#x20AC;&#x2DC; The one thing theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve got in common is insatiable intellectual curiosity. Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s the only common thread.â&#x20AC;&#x2122; â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Jennie Savage, Paly Debate Team coach

Thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a growing tendency in debate to share information resources, Palyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Savage said. In certain competitions sharing is mandatory. Gunn debaters also share what they affectionately refer to as â&#x20AC;&#x153;the tubsâ&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x201D; two plastic boxes full of files sorted under topics such as Middle East, Africa, East Asia and American government. Following the research phase â&#x20AC;&#x201D; for which Chan said the â&#x20AC;&#x153;accepted standardâ&#x20AC;? is reading 600 to 1,000 pages on a topic before the first tournament â&#x20AC;&#x201D; debaters â&#x20AC;&#x153;write blocks,â&#x20AC;? both affirming and negating the as-

signed resolution, and anticipating possible arguments of opponents. Although topics are assigned from above in Chanâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s chosen specialty of â&#x20AC;&#x153;Lincoln-Douglasâ&#x20AC;? debate, Chan says the arguments can take off in any number of directions. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Debate gives you the freedom to pursue whatever interests you,â&#x20AC;? he said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The format means there are only a couple of rigid guidelines you have to follow â&#x20AC;&#x201D; a time limit, and a judge that determines who won. Other than those two rules, thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s really no governing consensus over what

you can and canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t do in a round.â&#x20AC;? Palyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Debate Team, which two years ago produced Californiaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s state champion in the LincolnDouglas category, occasionally breaks the rules altogether. Impatient with perceived sexism on the national debate circuit, one award-winning male Paly debater last year donned a dress and jettisoned the assigned topic to deliver a public critique of debate culture. That symbolic act, by 2009 California State Lincoln-Douglas De(continued on next page)

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Palo Alto UniďŹ ed School District 25 Churchill Avenue, Palo Alto, CA 94306

January 28, 2011

REQUEST FOR QUALIFICATIONS MULTIPLE NEW CONSTRUCTION PROJECTS PALO ALTO AND GUNN HIGH SCHOOLS The Palo Alto UniďŹ ed School District is inviting qualiďŹ cation information from Contractors to provide General Construction Services for three upcoming construction projects. PQ 11-01 Gunn High School New Classroom Buildings A&B: Construction of two new Classroom buildings. Construction estimate is $18.8 mil. PQ 11-02 Gunn High School New Gymnasium: Construction of a new Gymnasium and remodeling of the existing Gym. Construction estimate is $9.6 mil. PQ 11-03 Palo Alto High School New Classroom & Media Arts: Construction of a new Classroom building and a new Media Arts building. Construction estimate is $23.3 mil. There will be a MANDATORY pre-qualiďŹ cation conference on Tuesday, February 15, 2011, at 9:00 am, at 25 Churchill Avenue, Building â&#x20AC;&#x153;Dâ&#x20AC;? Palo Alto, California 94306. The three prequaliďŹ cation packages and projects will be discussed. All responses to this RFQ must be received no later than 2:30 P.M. Tuesday, March 1st. Interested ďŹ rms shall submit their QualiďŹ cations as described within the prequaliďŹ cation package: Palo Alto UniďŹ ed School District Facilities Department 25 Churchill Avenue, Building â&#x20AC;&#x153;Dâ&#x20AC;? Palo Alto, CA 94306 Attn: Alex Morrison Questions regarding these three Requests for QualiďŹ cations (â&#x20AC;&#x153;RFQsâ&#x20AC;?) may be directed via fax to Alex Morrison at 650-327-3588. These are not requests for bids or offers by the District to contract with any party responding to these RFQâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s. The District reserves the right to reject any and all responses. All materials submitted to the District in response to this RFQ shall remain property of the District and may be considered a part of public record.

Page 48Ă&#x160;UĂ&#x160;>Â&#x2DC;Ă&#x2022;>Ă&#x20AC;Ă&#x17E;Ă&#x160;Ă&#x201C;n]Ă&#x160;Ă&#x201C;䣣Ă&#x160;UĂ&#x160;*>Â?Â&#x153;Ă&#x160;Â?Ă&#x152;Â&#x153;Ă&#x160;7iiÂ&#x17D;Â?Ă&#x17E;

Dilip Shekhar makes his opening statement while opponents Amrita Moitra and Jennifer Chang take notes for their rebuttal during a practice debate at Gunn High School. (continued from previous page)

bate champion Avi Arfin â&#x20AC;&#x201D; now a student at Yale University â&#x20AC;&#x201D; remains a hot topic in the debate blogosphere. â&#x20AC;&#x153;He got away with it by saying that what he was arguing was more important than the topic itself,â&#x20AC;? Savage recalled. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We do a bad job of critically examining ourselves. Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re so intellectual and want to examine the topic and the facts, but not our own culture. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Avi really opened inroads into that culture, and thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s still discussion going on about what Avi did last year.â&#x20AC;? Arfin said itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s impossible to describe how difficult it was to wear a dress. But as a second-semester senior, he â&#x20AC;&#x153;wanted to leave the activity I loved by making a differenceâ&#x20AC;? and sought to tackle far-reaching issues of sexism in debate and in society at large. Savage said sheâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s similarly proud of the risks taken by sophomore debater Julia Lee who is violating the prescribed format of a nuclear war topic, instead using her time to read

first-hand accounts of people who lived through the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. â&#x20AC;&#x153;She knows sheâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s probably going to lose every round, but she thinks itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s more important for those stories to be heard,â&#x20AC;? Savage said.


ebate does not come easily for most people, Savage said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I see a lot of kids at Paly whoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve never failed at anything come onto the team and expect to win out of the gate. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s ego-crushing and soul-crushing to lose at their first tournament, and some of them donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t come back. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s such a shame because they donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t get the chance to learn how to fail; to realize that being courageous isnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t about not being afraid â&#x20AC;&#x201D; itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s about being afraid and doing it anyway.â&#x20AC;? Those who do stick it out are passionate about the rewards â&#x20AC;&#x201D; and many grow up to pass along the debate culture to the next generation by becoming part-time coaches. At Paly Savage employs six assistant coaches â&#x20AC;&#x201D; all Stanford students and former high-school debaters, in-

cluding freshman Nikhil Bhargava, an alum of Palyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s debate program. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Debate almost took over my life for a little while,â&#x20AC;? said Bhargava, who is undecided about his Stanford major but considering symbolic systems. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It was very enjoyable.â&#x20AC;? At Gunn, assistant coach David Barden, an analyst with Bloom Energy by day, was a debater years ago at Los Gatos High School. Stresses and failures aside, debaters say their efforts yield many rewards. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It helps you think on your feet and it helps you with critical thinking,â&#x20AC;? said Paly sophomore Allen Zheng, whoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s been debating since his freshman year. â&#x20AC;&#x153;If your opponent says something completely out of the box, it helps you adapt to different situations that are unpredictable, which is kind of a life skill, I guess.â&#x20AC;? For Gunn junior Jeremy Neff, who also participates in school drama, debate has boosted confidence in his ability to â&#x20AC;&#x153;speak fluently, make sense and deliver it well.â&#x20AC;? Many debaters say the debate mindset offers benefits that spill over to writing.

Paly students offer summer â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;debate campâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; for kids Week-long August program aimed at younger students


ive dozen Palo Alto students will attend a summer camp next August where the competition isnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t in archery or ball games but in speaking publicly and matching wits in debate contests. Their teachers/coaches will be older students at Palo Alto High School. For sixth- through 10th-grade students new to speech and debate, the Paly Debate Team offers a week-long summer â&#x20AC;&#x153;speech and debate camp.â&#x20AC;? The camp runs this summer from Aug. 8 through Aug. 12, with a focus on public speaking in the morning and on debate in the afternoon. The cost for one session (morning or afternoon) is $295. For both sessions, the cost is $495. Nonresidents of Palo Alto will have to pay a $25 supplemental-insurance fee because of city regulations.

â&#x20AC;&#x153;While we plan the curriculum and daily programs so that each day would be fruitful to our students, there are substantial goals for each of them at the end of the camp,â&#x20AC;? said Paly sophomore Julia Lee, a camp organizer. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The speech students will prepare a speech and present it to their peer-and-parent audience, and the debate students will engage in actual debate rounds with each other,â&#x20AC;? Lee said. The camp is in its seventh year. Last year, with a capacity of 60 students, it was sold out. For more information, contact palyspeechanddebate, or call Paly student Esha Datta, a member of the management team, at 650-8683497. N â&#x20AC;&#x201D; Chris Kenrick

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Palo Alto High School debate team coach Jennie Savage works on exercises and ways to set up arguments for the team. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Once youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve done it for awhile, itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s really good when you have to formulate an argument and support it with specific points â&#x20AC;&#x201D; like on standardized test or essays,â&#x20AC;? Paly junior Alex Carter said.

â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Without debate I wouldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve missed out on the really different perspectives everyone has. Palo Altoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a great place, but itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s not representative of the entirety of the United States.â&#x20AC;&#x2122; â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Lucas Chan, Paly senior debater For the non-jocks, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Debate lets you be competitive, without a sport,â&#x20AC;? Paly sophomore Ana Carano notes. And then thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s the pure camaraderie. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s this huge network of people â&#x20AC;&#x201D; adults, high schoolers, middle schoolers alike that you become connected to,â&#x20AC;? Palyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Datta said.

â&#x20AC;&#x153;Thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s this really strong bond among you because you just really love this activity.â&#x20AC;? If youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re â&#x20AC;&#x153;luckyâ&#x20AC;? in debate, â&#x20AC;&#x153;You get to meet students from across the nation who are your peers, to establish a social network of people genuinely interested in the same things youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re interested in,â&#x20AC;? Paly senior Lucas Chan said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;You can ask them for help at any time, talk about any argument.â&#x20AC;? He said heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s made debate friends from Florida, Texas, Washington, D.C., and New York. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Without debate I wouldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve missed out on the really different perspectives everyone has. Palo Altoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a great place, but itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s not representative of the entirety of the United States.â&#x20AC;? Gunn Debate Club President Andrew Liu, who also edits the schoolâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s political magazine, The Chariot, and is a standout in national science competitions, said he first took a speaking class in sixth grade to overcome a fear of public speaking. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I gave a speech about an hourglass â&#x20AC;&#x201D; about not wasting time, using every second as preciously as you can. When I did that, speaking became fun for me,â&#x20AC;? Liu recalled.

â&#x20AC;&#x153;At first it was just the adrenaline speaking, getting in front of an audience and controlling the stage. And then I found out it was about more than just speaking, but also about learning things, knowing about current events, thinking logically and creatively.â&#x20AC;? Liu, who recently was named one of 300 semi-finalists nationwide in the Intel Science Talent Search for a bioinformatics project, said debate also helped him translate his science into stories people can understand. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It helps me formulate a story of what Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m saying in my research and be able to communicate it not just to technical experts, but also to the public,â&#x20AC;? he said. N Staff Writer Chris Kenrick can be e-mailed at ckenrick@paweekly. com. About the cover: Esha Datta and Alex Carter practice a Lincoln-Douglas debate at Palo Alto High School.

SEE MORE ONLINE Listen to students practice the three different styles of debate on Palo Alto Online.


Proclamation Recognizing Jay Thorwaldson


STUDY SESSION: Stanford University Medical Center


Interview of Candidates for the Library Advisory Commission

STANDING COMMITTEE MEETINGS The Finance Committee Meeting will be held at 7 PM on February 1. The High Speed Rail Committee Meeting will be held at 8:00 AM on February 3.

City of Palo Alto ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that a Draft Mitigated Negative Declaration has been prepared by the Palo Alto Department of Planning and Community Environment for the project listed below. This document will be available for review and comment during a minimum 20-day inspection period beginning January 28, 2011 through February 17, 2011 during the hours of 8:00 A.M. to 12:00 noon and 1:00 P.M. to 4:00 P.M. (Wednesdays 1PM to 4PM) at the Development Center, 285 Hamilton Avenue, Palo Alto, California. Application 10PLN-00364 will be considered at a public hearing by the Planning and Transportation Commission on Wednesday, March 9, 2011 at 7:00 p.m. in the Palo Alto City Council Chambers on the ďŹ rst ďŹ&#x201A;oor of the Civic Center, located at 250 Hamilton Avenue, Palo Alto, 525 San Antonio Avenue (File No. 10PLN-00364): Request by Katia Kamangar of SummerHill Homes, applicant, on behalf of A&D Protocol Transportations Inc., property owner, for a request for a Zone Change and Comprehensive Plan Amendment to assign the Village Residential land use designation and RM-15 zoning to a 2.65 acre developed site currently designated as Single Family Residential and zoned R-1 (8,000) but used as a preschool/ daycare center. The developed project in concept would include the demolition of the existing preschool/daycare center buildings and construction of 26 single family detached homes. The speciďŹ c development plans and 26-lot subdivision map may be subject to further environmental review following rezoning and land use designation amendment. Curtis Williams, Interim Director of Planning and Community Environment

Left, Steven Hu rapidly reads his argument â&#x20AC;&#x201D; a technique known as â&#x20AC;&#x153;spreadingâ&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x201D; while practicing a policy debate at Palo Alto High School. Above, policy debate coach Sam King helps Gregory Dunn and fellow debaters take down notes during a practice debate at Palo Alto High School.

In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, listening assistive devices are available in the Council Chambers and Council Conference Room. Sign language interpreters will be provided upon request with 72 hours advance notice. *>Â?Â&#x153;Ă&#x160;Â?Ă&#x152;Â&#x153;Ă&#x160;7iiÂ&#x17D;Â?Ă&#x17E;Ă&#x160;UĂ&#x160;>Â&#x2DC;Ă&#x2022;>Ă&#x20AC;Ă&#x17E;Ă&#x160;Ă&#x201C;n]Ă&#x160;Ă&#x201C;䣣Ă&#x160;U Page 49

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Palo Alto UniďŹ ed School District

Let The Sun Shine Viewpoints Gallery and Gallery 9 have joined to present sunthemed group shows. The artists are all local. Gallery 9 is located at 143 Main St. in Los Altos. See websites for hours. Free. Viewpoints Gallery, 315 State St., Los Altos. Vodoun/Vodounon: Portraits of Initiates This exhibition presents diptychs by the Belgian photographer Jean Dominique Burton, who portrays Vodoun practitioners in Benin and their sacred shrines. Through March 20, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Free. Cantor Arts Center, 328 Lomita Drive, Stanford.

CALENDAR LISTINGS For complete Calendar listings or to submit a Calendar listing, go to and click on â&#x20AC;&#x153;Master Community Calendarâ&#x20AC;? For News submissions for possible use elsewhere in the paper, e-mail or call (650) 326-8210


Notice is hereby Given that proposals will be received by the Palo Alto UniďŹ ed School District for bid package: Contract Name: Interactive White Board & Classroom Audio system Contract No.: WBS-4 & WBS-5 DESCRIPTION OF THE WORK: The work includes, but is not limited to: The supply and installation of Interactive White Boards and Classroom Audio Systems at ďŹ ve elementary schools. Work includes the removal and disposal of older existing Interactive White Board, the removal and replacement of standard white boards, Installation/ModiďŹ cation of tack able wall surface. Patch and paint wall surfaces as may be necessary. Bidding documents contain the full description of the work. There will be a mandatory pre-bid conference and site visit: WBS-4 & WBS-5â&#x20AC;&#x201C; 9:00 a.m. on February 17, 2011 starting at the District Facilities OfďŹ ce located at 25 Churchill Building D. Palo Alto, California Bid Submission: Proposals must be received at the District Facilities OfďŹ ce building D, by: 10:00 a.m. for WBS-4 on February 25th , 2011. 10:15 a.m. for WBS-5 on February 25th , 2011. PREVAILING WAGE LAWS: The successful Bidder must comply with all prevailing wage laws applicable to the Project, and related requirements contained in the Contract Documents. Palo Alto UniďŹ ed School District will maintain a Labor Compliance Program (LCP) for the duration of this project. In bidding this project, the contractor warrants he/she is aware and will follow the Public Works Chapter of the California Labor Code comprised of labor code sections 1720 â&#x20AC;&#x201C; 1861. A copy of the Districts LCP is available for review at 25 Churchill Avenue, Building D, Palo Alto, CA 94306. 1. A pre-job conference shall be conducted with the contractor or subcontractors to discuss federal and state labor law requirements applicable to the contract. 2. Project contractors and subcontracts shall maintain and furnish to the District, at a designated time, a certiďŹ ed copy of each payroll with a statement of compliance signed under penalty of perjury. 3. The District shall review and, if appropriate, audit payroll records to verify compliance with the Public Works Chapter of the Labor Code. 4. The District shall withhold contract payments if payroll records are delinquent or inadequate. 5. The District shall withhold contract payments as described in the LCP, including applicable penalties when the District and Labor Commissioner establish that underpayment of other violations has occurred. Bidders may examine Bidding Documents at Facilities OfďŹ ce, Building â&#x20AC;&#x153;Dâ&#x20AC;?. Bidders may view the Plans and SpeciďŹ cations at the Districts Facilities ofďŹ ce. All questions can be addressed to: Palo Alto UniďŹ ed School District 25 Churchill Avenue, Building D Palo Alto, CA 94306-1099 Attn: Ron Smith Phone: (650) 329-3927 Fax: (650) 327-3588 Page 50Ă&#x160;UĂ&#x160;>Â&#x2DC;Ă&#x2022;>Ă&#x20AC;Ă&#x17E;Ă&#x160;Ă&#x201C;n]Ă&#x160;Ă&#x201C;䣣Ă&#x160;UĂ&#x160;*>Â?Â&#x153;Ă&#x160;Â?Ă&#x152;Â&#x153;Ă&#x160;7iiÂ&#x17D;Â?Ă&#x17E;

A Festive Winter Dinner Celebrate the winter season and an early Valentineâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Day dinner with a participation-style cooking class with Lou Pappas and Jack Graf. Jan. 30, 5-7:30 p.m. $45 member/$55 non-member. Gamble Garden, 1431 Waverley St., Palo Alto. Call 650-329-1356 ext. 201. A Celebration of Women and Jewish Learning There will be a â&#x20AC;&#x153;Celebration of Women and Jewish Learningâ&#x20AC;? Feb. 6. Keynote speaker Lori Palatnik, director of the Jewish Womenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Renaissance Project, will be featured and diverse workshops held. Sponsored by Jewish Study Network. 10 a.m.-2:15 p.m. $36 JCC members/$40 non-members. Palo Alto JCC, 3921 Fabian Way, Palo Alto. Affordable Solar Electricity Reuben Veek of SunWork explains an approach to reducing the cost of PV installations. SunWork lowers the cost of solar PV installation by utilizing volunteer trainees, reducing labor costs. Jan. 31, 7-9 p.m. Free. Acterra, 3921 E Bayshore Road, Palo Alto. Call 650-962-9876 ext. 353. Bountiful Berries Learn how to grow blueberries, raspberries, blackberries and mulberries for berry harvests May through late fall. Hear specific planting instructions including soil amendments

and trellising. Jan. 29, 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. $31. Common Ground Garden Supply and Education Center, 559 College Ave., Palo Alto. Call 650-493-6072. Goat Cheese Love Chef Jaimie Casey of the Palo Alto Cheese School leads a tasting of artisan goat cheeses, all made in the United States. Learn how goat cheese is made while sampling a wide variety of styles paired with complementary wines. For ages 21 and up. Jan. 30, 4-7 p.m. $45 per person. Hidden Villa Farm, 26870 Moody Road, Los Altos Hills. Call 650-949-9704. Greywater Your Yard Roy Nordblom III, early greenbuilder, sustainable construction consultant and trainer, will teach about using greywater. Jan. 30, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. $75. Hidden Villa Farm, 26870 Moody Road, Los Altos Hills. Call 650-949-9704.


A Nation of Immigrants Henry Mollicone, the choir of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Palo Alto, members of the San Jose Symphonic Choir, and a small orchestra present Misa de los Inmigrantes, mass in Spanish by Henry Mollicone, narrated by Maria Marroquin, text by Kathy Mollicone. Jan. 29 and


Festival focus Mongolian composer Byambasuren Sharav will be one of the many artists represented next month at Stanford Universityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s seventh annual Pan-Asian Music Festival, which runs Feb. 2-13 and features concerts, lectures and visual art. One event is a Stanford Symphony Orchestra concert at 8 p.m. Feb. 5 in Dinkelspiel Auditorium; the program includes U.S. premieres of Sharavâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;Concerto for Morin Khuur and Orchestraâ&#x20AC;? and Suite No. 2 from the ballet â&#x20AC;&#x153;Zuurdiin Oron.â&#x20AC;? Tickets are $10 general, $5 for non-Stanford students, and free for Stanford students. Other festival performers include the Mongolian throat singer Nanjid Sengedorj, and the Iranian singersongwriter Mohsen Namjoo. For details, go to or call 650-725-ARTS.

30, 7:30-10 p.m. $20 in advance, $22 at the door, seniors and children up to 12 years $15. Unitarian Universalist Church of Palo Alto, 505 East Charleston Road, Palo Alto. eventsActivities.html#mass Childrenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Concert with Nancy Cassidy Proceeds benefit local charities through the Philanthropy Committee of the Palo Alto Womanâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Club. To order tickets please send a check payable to the Palo Alto Womanâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Club to Diana Wahler, P.O. Box 1059, Palo Alto, CA 94302 by Feb. 2. Tickets will be held at the door. Note there are two concerts: 10:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. Feb. 5, 10:30-11:30 a.m. $10 per person. Palo Alto Womanâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Club, 475 Homer Ave., Palo Alto. Call 650-8559700. www.womansclubof Flute and Oboe Recital Tomiko Tsai, flute and Adrienne Malley, oboe, will perform solo and ensemble pieces accompanied by Miles Graber on Piano. The program will include classical music featuring pieces by Dring, Dutilleux, Feld, Gaubert, Godard, and Moscheles. Jan. 29, 8 p.m. Free. Palo Alto Art Center, 1313 Newell Road, Palo Alto. Jazz Concert Mountain View High School Jazz Ensemble and Studio 501 Bands will perform several jazz numbers Feb. 9, 7-8 p.m. General admission $8, Senior Citizens, children under 12 or MVHS ASB cardholders $6. Spartan Theater, 3535 Truman Ave., Mountain View. Master Sinfonia Chamber Orchestra Concert David Ramadanoff and guest conductor Pamela Martin lead MSCOâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s January concert. The program includes Bachâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Suite No. 3 in D major, Mozartâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Symphony No. 39 in E-flat major, and Mozartâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Concerto for Horn No. 2, with John Burton, horn soloist. Free reception with the artists included. Jan. 30, 2:302:30 p.m. Tickets $5-20. Los Altos United Methodist Church, 655 Magdalena Ave., Los Altos. Music by African American Composers Music by African American composers, including new work by Joshua McGhee; Yolanda Rhodes, soprano; LaDoris Cordell and Deanne Tucker, piano and vocals; Josephine Gandolfi, piano; Susan C. Brown, violin; Victoria Ehrlich, cello, Carol Somersille, clarinet. Benefit for music programs at Eastside Prep. Jan. 30, 3 p.m. $15 general, $5 senior/ student. Performing Arts Center, Eastside College Preparatory School, 1041 Myrtle St., East Palo Alto.

Family and Kids

â&#x20AC;&#x153;Ferdinand the Bullâ&#x20AC;? Palo Alto Childrenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Theatre presents â&#x20AC;&#x153;Ferdinand the Bull,â&#x20AC;? a new musical based on the classic story by Munro Leaf. Ferdy, an easy-going, flower-loving kind of bull, meets the unhappy Danilo, a boy torn between his own dream and his fatherâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s desires for him to be a bullfighter. Shows at 2, 4:30, and 7 p.m. Jan. 28-Feb. 13, $8-$12. Palo Alto Childrenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Theatre, 1305 Middlefield Road, Palo Alto. Call 650-463-4930. Aquarium Spotlight Day Docents will lead a hands-on tour of the aquarium, including touching and handling marine life. Feb. 12, 2-5 p.m. Free. Marine Sci-

ence Institute, 500 Discovery Parkway, Redwood City. Call 650-364-2760. Blossoming Family Rummage Sale Gently used maternity and baby clothes and gear for sale. All proceeds support nonprofit Blossom Birthâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s services for new and expectant families. Feb. 6, noon-3 p.m. Free. Blossom Birth, 299 S. California Ave, suite120, Palo Alto. Call 650-321-2326. Chicken Day Members of the San Carlos Eaton Hills 4H Club and students from St. Josephâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s/Sacred Heart will bring their birds, answer questions and share stories. All ages welcome. Feb. 5, 10:30 a.m.-noon. Free. Atherton Library, 2 Dinkelspiel Station Lane, Atherton. Call 650-328-2422. Lunar New Year Celebration HeadsUp! Child Development Center along with Emerson School in Palo Alto will be having a Lunar New Year celebration. The students will be performing short dances, a play and songs. Guests may participate in arts, crafts, and a cooking project. Feb. 8, 4:30-6 p.m. Free. HeadsUp! Child Development Center & Emerson School, 2800 W. Bayshore Road, Palo Alto. Call 650-424-1221. www. Paws for Tales at Portola Valley Library Children ages 5 and up can improve their reading skills and make a new friend by reading aloud to a therapy dog. Pet Assisted Therapy teams and their handlers from the Peninsula Humane Society and SPCAâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;Paws for Talesâ&#x20AC;? Program, will be available at the Portola Valley Library. Sign-up required. Feb. 5, 11 a.m.-noon. Free. Portola Valley Library, 765 Portola Road, Portola Valley. Story Time with Matthew Gollub Matthew Gollub introduces Spanish words and Latin jazz in â&#x20AC;&#x153;Jazz Fly 2.â&#x20AC;? Jan. 30, 11:30 a.m. Free. Keplerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s, 1010 El Camino Real, Menlo Park. Call 650-324-4321.

Live Music

Special Events

2nd Bay Area Wellness Festival Introduction of various wellness groups. Speakers: Prof. Adiel Tel-Oren, MD, on â&#x20AC;&#x153;Should Food Really be you Medicineâ&#x20AC;? and John Robbins on â&#x20AC;&#x153;The New Good Life.â&#x20AC;? Jan. 30, 2-7 p.m. $10. Cubberley Theater, 4000 Middlefield Road, Palo Alto. www.BayAreaWellnessFestival. com Lunar New Year Asian celebration of change and the year of the rabbit. Lion Dancers, Red Panda acrobats, martial arts, kidsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; arts and crafts, food and more. Feb. 5, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Free. Courthouse Square, 2200 Broadway, Redwood City. Menlo Park Shopping Night Menlo Park boutiques are banding together to endorse the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) 2011 Spring Fling fundraiser. On Thu., Feb. 3, from 6-8 p.m., the boutiques will donate 10 percent of their sales to JDRF. Menlo Park, Menlo Park Boutiques, Menlo Park. Call 415-597-6311. SpringFling


â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Worry Solutionâ&#x20AC;? Martin Rossman, MD, a local doctor and a pioneer in the field of integrative medicine, will discuss his new book, â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Worry Solutionâ&#x20AC;? (foreword by Andrew Weil, MD.), and he will demonstrate the relaxation and

guided imagery techniques described in the book. Copies of the book will be available. Feb. 3, 6-8 p.m. Free. Stanford University Book Store, 519 Lasuen Mall, Stanford. Call 510-851-2264. Civil Liberties in a Time of Endless War Speaker: Glen Greenwald. Greenwald is the author of three books: â&#x20AC;&#x153;How Would a Patriot Act?â&#x20AC;? and â&#x20AC;&#x153;A Tragic Legacy,â&#x20AC;? both New York Times bestsellers; and â&#x20AC;&#x153;Great American Hypocrites.â&#x20AC;? Feb. 4, 7:30-9 p.m. $10-$20 suggested donation. Unitarian Universalist Church, 505 E. Charleston Road, Palo Alto. Call 650326-8837. Douglas Brinkleyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Quiet World: Saving Alaskaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Wilderness Kingdom: 1879 - 1960â&#x20AC;? Award-winning historian Douglas Brinkley traces the Wilderness Movement in Alaska. Based on extensive new archival research, he showcases how a band of determined environmentalists defeated the â&#x20AC;&#x153;drill-baby-drillâ&#x20AC;? crowd of the 1950s to found the Alaskan National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR). Feb. 1, 7 p.m. Free. Keplerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s, 1010 El Camino Real, Menlo Park. Call 650-324-4321. Pan-Asian Music Festival: Arts and Culture in Contemporary Mongolia This international interdisciplinary symposium on Mongolian visual and performing art, poetry, and culture will bring artists, musicians, performers, and religious leaders from Mongolia together with U.S. scholars to explore the many facets of contemporary Mongolian life. Feb. 5, 10:30 a.m. Free. Campbell Recital Hall, Stanford Campus, Stanford.

Would you like to be a control in a study? Dr. Jose G. Montoya, Associate Professor of Medicine at Stanford, is conducting a study looking for pathogens that may be associated with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. His team is looking for controls of the same age and sex as patients in the study.

Participation in the study involves doing a 20-minute phone screening interview. If you are eligible, you will be invited to come to Stanford for a 60-minute study visit, including a blood draw.


Hands-on Nature: Star Struck â&#x20AC;&#x153;Wish you knew more than where the Big Dipper is? In this class you will easily see exactly where various constellations, stars and planets are. Hear the stories our ancient ancestors told about the mysterious

8:30 A.M., Thursday, February 17, 2011 Palo Alto Council Chambers, 1st Floor, Civic Center, 250 Hamilton Avenue. Go to the Development Center at 285 Hamilton Avenue to review filed documents; contact Alicia Spotwood for information regarding business hours at 650-617-3168. 300 Homer Avenue [10PLN-174]: Request by the Palo Alto History Museum for Architectural Review and Historic Resources Board review of historic rehabilitation and rear addition to the historic Category 2 Roth Building, adding 1,462 square feet to the 19,182 square foot building. The application includes requests for a Conditional Use Permit request, Transfer of Development Rights (TDR) eligibility for approximately 4,796 square feet to sell to eligible receiver sites, and City Council amendment of the Option Agreement and Lease. Zone District: PF in the SOFA I CAP. 300 Pasteur Drive [10PLN-00395]: Request by Stanford Hospital and Clinics on behalf of The Board of Trustees for the Leland Stanford Junior University for Architectural Review of a new Stanford Hospitals and Clinics main hospital building, consisting of approximately 1,100,000 square feet of 456 replacements hospital beds, the addition of 144 new hospital beds, surgical operating suites, diagnostic and treatment suites, emergency department, nursing and support space. The project also include development of an above grade/ below grade parking facility of approximately 970 spaces, site re-development and a new landscaping plan. These projects are components of the Stanford University Medical Center Facilities Renewal and Replacement Project. Existing Zone District: PF (Public Facilities). Amy French Manager of Current Planning

If you are interested in participating or have any questions, please contact the study coordinator,

Jane Norris, at (650) 723-8126. For general information about participant rights, contact












On Stage

â&#x20AC;&#x153;No Good Deedâ&#x20AC;? by Paul Praverman Set in the midst of the Irish gang war, this new play is told with a classic film noir feel. Thu.-Sat. 8 p.m., Sun. 2 p.m. Jan. 13-30, $15-$30. Pear Avenue Theatre, 1220 Pear Ave. Unit K, Mountain View. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Noises Offâ&#x20AC;? Menlo School does a double take on the British farce, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Noises Offâ&#x20AC;? by Michael Frayn. Dueling directors are staging two casts in alternating shows. Performances are: Feb. 9-13 at 7:30 p.m., with matinees on Feb. 12 and 13 at 2 p.m. 7:30-9:45 p.m. Students $7, adults $10, senior-citizen discounts. Florence Moore Theatre, 50 Valparaiso Ave., Atherton. Call 650-330-2001 ext. 2333. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Private Eyesâ&#x20AC;? A play about truth, trust, and betrayal ... or is it? This dramaticcomedy explores a tangled web of love and lust with more than a few twists and turns of its own. Through Feb. 13, 8-10 p.m. $16-$25. Dragon Theatre, 535 Alma St., Palo Alto. Call 800-838-3006. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Sylviaâ&#x20AC;? Greg and Kateâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s empty-nesting years of marriage are disrupted when Greg becomes enamored with Sylvia, a dog he has found in Central Park. This romantic comedy about a marriage and a winsome canine plays through Feb. 18. 8 p.m. $24-32. Bus Barn Theater, 97 Hillview Ave., Los Altos. Call 650-941-0551.

NOTICE OF A PUBLIC MEETING of the city of Palo Alto Architectural Review Board (ARB)

There is no cost to participate in the study. You will be compensated with $100 upon completion of the study visit to reimburse you for your time and inconvenience.


Celtic Rose Valentine Concert Celtic love songs with harmonies on lute and guitar with Continental cuisine. There is a $15 minimum for drinks and appetizers. Feb. 11, 6-8:30 p.m. $7 online with reservation; $10 at door. Angelicaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Bistro, 863 Main St., Redwood City. Call 650365-3226. Larry Vuckovich and Buca Necak Pianist Larry Vuckovich performs with bassist Buca Necak Jan. 29, 8-11 p.m. Free. Oak City Bar & Grill, 1029 El Camino Real, Menlo Park. Call 650-321-6882. http:// Roy Rogers & The Delta Rhythm Kings Slide-guitar player and Grammy-winning producer Roy Rogers will be performing with his band The Delta Rhythm Kings Jan. 29, 9-11:30 p.m. $18 advance / $20 door. Club Fox, 2215 Broadway St., Redwood City.

night sky and gather at the hearthside for warm cocoa and cookies. For Families,â&#x20AC;? Hidden Villa says. Feb. 4, 7-8:30 p.m. $10 per person or $5 per student/ limitedincome. Hidden Villa Farm, 26870 Moody Road, Los Altos Hills. Call 650949-9704.

NOTICE OF A PUBLIC MEETING of the Palo Alto Planning & Transportation Commission Please be advised the Planning and Transportation Commission (P&TC) shall conduct a meeting at 6:00 PM, Wednesday, February 9, 2011 in the Civic Center, Council Chambers, 1st Floor, 250 Hamilton Avenue, Palo Alto, California. Any interested persons may appear and be heard on these items. Staff reports for agendized items are available via the Cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s main website at and also at the Planning Division Front Desk, 5th Floor, City Hall, after 2:00 PM on the Friday preceding the meeting date. Copies will be made available at the Development Center should City Hall be closed on the 9/80 Friday. NEW BUSINESS. Other Items: 1. Green Building Program Update â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Report on Implementation of Updated Green Building Ordinances. 2. Housing Element Policies and Programs Update. Questions. Any questions regarding the above applications, please contact the Planning Department at (650) 329-2440. The ďŹ les relating to these items are available for inspection weekdays between the hours of 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM. This public meeting is televised live on Government Access Channel 26. ADA. The City of Palo Alto does not discriminate against individuals with disabilities. To request accommodations to access City facilities, services or programs, to participate at public meetings, or to learn more about the Cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), please contact the Cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s ADA Coordinator at 650.329.2550 (voice) or by e-mailing *** Curtis Williams, Director of Planning and Community Environment

NOTICE OF PUBLIC MEETING of the City of Palo Alto Historic Resources Board Please be advised the Historic Resources Board shall conduct a meeting at 8:00 AM on Wednesday, February 16, 2011 in the Civic Center, Council Chambers, 1st Floor, 250 Hamilton Avenue, Palo Alto, California. Any interested persons may appear and be heard on these items. NEW BUSINESS: Public Hearings 300 Homer Avenue - Roth Building [10PLN-0000000174]: Request by the Palo Alto History Museum (applicant/ future tenant) on behalf of the City of Palo Alto (property owner) for Historic Resources Board review and recommendation regarding a proposed historic rehabilitation of the 19,182 square foot Roth Building and a 1,462 square foot addition to the rear of the building. The Roth Building is on the National Register of Historic Places and is a Category 2 historic structure. The proposed rehabilitation plan includes the preservation and rehabilitation of the character-deďŹ ning features of the exterior and interior areas, as well as preservation of landscaping of historic signiďŹ cance. The application includes requests for: (1) Architectural Review approval, (2) a Conditional Use Permit, (3) participation in the Cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Transfer of Development Rights (TDR) program that would generate a ďŹ&#x201A;oor area bonus of approximately 4,796 square feet that would be sold to eligible receiver sites, and (4) approval by the City Council of an amendment to the Option Agreement and Lease. Zone District: PF in the SOFA I CAP. Questions. If interested parties have any questions regarding the above applications, please contact the Planning Division at (650) 329-2441. The ďŹ les relating to these items are available for inspection weekdays between the hours of 8:00 AM to 12:00 PM and 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM and staff reports will be available for inspection at 2:00 PM the Friday preceding the hearing. The City of Palo Alto does not discriminate against individuals with disabilities. To request accommodations to access City facilities, services or programs, to participate at public meetings, or to learn more about the Cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), please contact the Cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s ADA Coordinator at 650.329.2550 (voice) or by e-mailing

Steven Turner, Advance Planning Manager *>Â?Â&#x153;Ă&#x160;Â?Ă&#x152;Â&#x153;Ă&#x160;7iiÂ&#x17D;Â?Ă&#x17E;Ă&#x160;UĂ&#x160;>Â&#x2DC;Ă&#x2022;>Ă&#x20AC;Ă&#x17E;Ă&#x160;Ă&#x201C;n]Ă&#x160;Ă&#x201C;䣣Ă&#x160;U Page 51

Title Pages A monthly section on local books and authors, edited

by Karla Kane


Veronica Weber

Dr. Barbara Almond has been treating women in her local psychiatry practice for decades. by Karla Kane â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Monster Within: The Hidden Side of Motherhoodâ&#x20AC;? by Barbara Almond; University of California Press; 265 pp fter nearly 40 years of treating patients in her private psychiatry practice, Palo Alto psychotherapist Barbara Almond came to a realization. â&#x20AC;&#x153;All my female patients, past and present, had been or were ... dealing with guilt or shame about the quality of their mothering or their avoidance of motherhood.â&#x20AC;? Almond, a mother of three sons and professor emeritus at Stanford, decided to write her book, â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Monster Within: The Hidden Side of Motherhood,â&#x20AC;? to examine the guilt and shame many women, author included, have felt about their perceived mothering inadequacies, as well as what can happen when such feelings become dangerous in the extreme. In â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Monster Within,â&#x20AC;? Almond probes the issue of maternal ambivalence (mixed feelings toward parenting, motherhood and oneâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s children) and suggests that problems stem not so much from the existence of ambivalence but rather


from trying to pretend such feelings are abnormal or should not exist in â&#x20AC;&#x153;goodâ&#x20AC;? mothers. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It is my purpose to explore and understand the spectrum of maternal ambivalent feelings, thoughts, and behaviors and where possible to see them for the normal, inevitable, and ubiquitous phenomena they are,â&#x20AC;? she states. Her secondary purpose is to encourage women to be able to discuss such feelings openly, such as in a therapy environment, safe from judgment. As suggested in the title, she also argues that there is a connection between concepts of motherhood and monstrosity â&#x20AC;&#x201D; be it in a pregnant womanâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s fears of delivering a â&#x20AC;&#x153;monsterâ&#x20AC;? child or in cultural stereotypes of cruel, evil mothers. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We expect everything from mothers, and excuse little,â&#x20AC;? Almond says. She discusses the incredible amount of pressure put on women to not only become mothers but to be perfect at it, causing many to feel inadequate. Some overcompensate, becoming â&#x20AC;&#x153;too good,â&#x20AC;? smothering or controlling. Some become the stereotypical â&#x20AC;&#x153;stage mother,â&#x20AC;? over-involved with their kidsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; lives, while some shy away from motherhood altogether. In the worst cases, some take their inability to cope out

Page 52Ă&#x160;UĂ&#x160;>Â&#x2DC;Ă&#x2022;>Ă&#x20AC;Ă&#x17E;Ă&#x160;Ă&#x201C;n]Ă&#x160;Ă&#x201C;䣣Ă&#x160;UĂ&#x160;*>Â?Â&#x153;Ă&#x160;Â?Ă&#x152;Â&#x153;Ă&#x160;7iiÂ&#x17D;Â?Ă&#x17E;

on their children, such as Andrea Yates, who famously drowned all five of her young kids. Much of Almondâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s case studies comes from her own patients, their names changed to protect their identities. These women express their fears about pregnancy, birth and childrearing and, while their individual issues differ, they share a sense of dread that they wonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t be able to be perfect, or even goodenough mothers and are therefore unbearably flawed. In her analysis, Almond often connects the womenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s issues over motherhood with problems in their own childhood and relationships with their parents. She writes from the perspective of a classic psychoanalyst and those skeptical of Freudian theory may find themselves rolling their eyes at such assertions that a patientâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;disruptions in her early relationship with her mother intensified her passionate Oedipal attachment to her father.â&#x20AC;? However she also writes with clear compassion and concern for her patients, which shines through her writing. Many mothers, she says, fear giving birth or creating a monster child (a literal â&#x20AC;&#x153;monster withinâ&#x20AC;?), whether it be a physical â&#x20AC;&#x153;monsterâ&#x20AC;? (deformed or unhealthy in someway) or a child with monstrous behavior or a â&#x20AC;&#x153;badâ&#x20AC;? personality. Some of her most interesting insights come from the sections on monster figures in literature and popular culture. Cases of maternal ambivalence turn up often in literature, Almond argues, including in such monster classics as â&#x20AC;&#x153;Frankensteinâ&#x20AC;? and â&#x20AC;&#x153;Dracula.â&#x20AC;? She analyzes the life of â&#x20AC;&#x153;Frankensteinâ&#x20AC;? author Mary Shelley, who grew up motherless. Almond argues that Shelleyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s issues over her motherâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s death soon after childbirth and a complicated relationship with her father are reflected in her novel about a scientist

creating a monstrous â&#x20AC;&#x153;child.â&#x20AC;? Maternal ambivalence is dealt with in more modern tales too, such as â&#x20AC;&#x153;Rosemaryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Babyâ&#x20AC;? (in which a mother unwittingly births the child of Satan) and â&#x20AC;&#x153;We Need to Talk About Kevinâ&#x20AC;? (involving a motherâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s inability to love her troubled and dangerous son). While authors can tackle such issues in works of fiction, in real life, most mothers feel too ashamed to even discuss the resentment they sometimes feel toward their children or role as mothers. â&#x20AC;&#x153;What we love we can also lose. What we lose causes us pain ... it is amazing how much of a taboo the negative side of ambivalence carries in our culture,â&#x20AC;? Almond says. Her message, ultimately, is that women and society should not be ashamed of their ambivalent feelings but rather seek to understand, work through and accept them. If such feelings are recognized and women better supported, she ar-


COMING TO STANFORD ... Martin Rossman will present his new book, â&#x20AC;&#x153; The Worry Solution,â&#x20AC;? (Feb. 3, 6 p.m.) at Stanford Bookstore, 519 Lasuen Mall, Stanford University campus. Rossman is the founder of The Healing Mind, the co-founder of the Academy for Guided Imagery, a clinical faculty member at the University of California San Francisco Medical School and an advisory board member of Dr. Andrew Weilâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Integrative Medicine Program at the University of Arizona. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Worry Solutionâ&#x20AC;? discusses the neurological origins of worrying, its purpose and how to deal with anxiety. Information: 650-329-1217 or

gues, both mothers and children will benefit immensely. Almond argues that to some degree negative feelings toward motherhood are not only universal but perfectly healthy, as they can promote creativity and necessary separation between mother and child. It is the attempts to marginalize such feelings as â&#x20AC;&#x153;forbiddenâ&#x20AC;? that have a negative impact on both mothers and their children, she says. If the aforementioned Andrea Yates, for instance, had received adequate support and therapy, could her children have been saved their gruesome fate? â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Monster Withinâ&#x20AC;? is recommended reading for any woman struggling with motherhood and feeling they are alone in their plight. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s recommended, too, for anyone who might be quick to judge a mother for being less than perfect. N Editorial assistant Karla Kane can be e-mailed at kkane@ AUTHOR, AUTHOR ... Author events at Keplerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Books in Menlo Park this month include Douglas Brinkley, â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Quiet World: Saving Alaskaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Wilderness Kingdom: 1879-1960â&#x20AC;? (Feb. 1, 7 p.m.); Patti Lee-Hoffman, â&#x20AC;&#x153;In Great Companyâ&#x20AC;? (Feb. 3, 7 p.m.); Kelli Stanley, â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Curse-Maker: A Mysteryâ&#x20AC;? (Feb. 6, 2 p.m.); Sarah Blake, â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Postmistressâ&#x20AC;? (Feb. 10, 7 p.m.) and Marie Lawson Fiala, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Letters from a Distant Shore, (Feb. 12, 3 p.m.). Information:

Items for Book Talk may be sent to Associate Editor Carol Blitzer, Palo Alto Weekly, P.O Box 1610, Palo Alto, CA 93202 or e-mailed to by the last Friday of the month.

Palo Alto Weekly 01.28.2011 - Section 2  
Palo Alto Weekly 01.28.2011 - Section 2  

Section 2 of the January 28, 2011 edition of the Palo Alto Weekly