WAVY GRAVY HAIKU: The Eye talked to Berkeley counterculture figure Wavy Gravy about the upcoming show with Jackson Browne in Kensington to benefit Camp Winnarainbow, and the conversation eventually turned to another musical figure, Richie Havens, who died April 22 at age 72.
Gravy was the master of ceremonies at the legendary 1969 Woodstock concert in upstate New York, and Havens was the opening act. However, their association went back at least a decade earlier. "Richie and I evolved in ancient times, I'm talking early '60s on the cusp of the late '50s," Gravy said.
Along with Woodstock, they had something else in common. "Neither of us had front teeth," Gravy said, adding that after performances, "Dentists used to leave us cards."
On the day Havens died, Gravy wrote a tribute haiku that was posted on his Facebook page and has garnered more than 3,000 "likes."
A Haiku For Richie
RICHIE HAVENS PASSED
SING OUT FREEDOM, FREE AT LAST
STRAIGHT INTO THE LIGHT
Art or politics?: Among Richmond city leaders, seemingly everything is political.
At a City Council meeting on April 23, a Richmond Art Center official gave a presentation unveiling a mural titled "Richmond Identities: Extraordinary Lives/Ordinary People" by artist Judy Baca.
The city-funded mural will grace the Richmond Senior Center's exterior wall on Macdonald Avenue.
The mural consists of several panels designed to tell Richmond's history.
But one panel, the one about "today and tomorrow," drew significant backlash.
The panel displays several prominent Richmond residents, including environmental activist and Urban Tilth founder Doria Robinson, whose face is the largest and most prominent one on the painting.
In the background is pictured a group of protesters holding a "Clean up Chevron" sign. The Chevron refinery is also pictured.
Councilman Corky Boozé took exception.
"Clean up Chevron? That's wrong," he said, adding that "this is all RPA (Richmond Progressive Alliance) people," referring to the local volunteer political group that bitterly opposes Boozé.
Boozé said the city should not fund a "political statement" and demanded that other Richmond residents, including longtime activist Lillie Mae Jones, be either included or featured more prominently.
Councilman Jim Rogers said he, too, thought the mural was "political" and asked City Attorney Bruce Goodmiller whether it was illegal for the city to fund such a project.
Goodmiller said city funding for political speech is illegal. However, he said the mural was not political speech, but rather a "slice of history."
Boozé wanted the panel scrapped, but he didn't have the votes. He and Councilman Nat Bates voted against installing the mural.
"Boy, am I upset," Boozé groused.
The mural should be completed this year.
FROM THE POLICE BLOTTER: Antioch police received a call of a robbery last month from a person saying she had gone to Spanos Street to buy "weed" with a friend when a man came up in a white Lexus, pulled her from the passenger seat and stole $28 from her bra. No word on whether police recovered the $28 or arrested the caller for trying to purchase an illegal drug.
CONCORD AND HOLLYWOOD: With the recent announcement of some of the casting and more details about the movie "When the Game Stands Tall," about the De La Salle High School football program, buzz is a growing among alumni from De La Salle and sister school Carondelet High -- especially those who graduated in the early 2000s.
The movie is based on former Times writer Neil Hayes' book chronicling the 2002 season and the Spartans' national-record winning streak.
The movie will star Jim Caviezel as coach Bob Ladouceur, along with Laura Dern, Michael Chiklis and Alexander Ludwig.
Some alumni on Facebook used the news of the cast announcement to ask -- jokingly -- who should play them in the movie.
The film's release is slated for fall 2014.
Staff writers Chris Treadway, Robert Rogers and Paul Burgarino contributed to this report.