Things I Remember:
1. Kids in other cities learned the rhyme, “In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue.” But in Berkeley, I learned, “In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue, it was a courageous thing to do, but some people were already there.”
2. This was followed by several stanzas listing important Native American tribes.
3. How I always thought my parents were such weirdos for wearing Brooks Brothers sweaters and J.Crew slacks when all my friends’ parents wore hemp drawstring pants and Birkenstocks.
4. To celebrate Halloween in elementary school, we sang a song about how witches were actually Mother Earth protecting healers and midwives who were persecuted for being too awesome, basically.
5. The song’s chorus ended with, “And there’s a little witch in every woman today!”
6. One time, my parents took my eight-year-old sister and me to a Grateful Dead revival band show at the Greek Theater, but we had to leave early because my sister couldn’t breathe through all the pot smoke.
7. Walking my dog to People’s Park at age ten, to sit and talk with my favorite homeless Street Spirit vendor and play with his puppy, whose name was Zappa.
8. Once, I attended a Moon Blood ceremony celebrating a girl’s first period.
9. Red velvet cupcakes were served.
10. At How Berkeley Can You Be, an annual event/parade, the local nudist colony always had a float. This was nonetheless considered a family event.