Democrats Sense a Shift in the Political Winds, but It May Not Be Enough

N.Y. Times - Wed, 08/24/2022 - 15:00
A series of strong special election showings, culminating in a New York win, have buoyed Democratic confidence, but a daunting map may still cost them the House.
Categories: Local News

Heat’s Udonis Haslem returning for 20th season

San Jose Mercury - Wed, 08/24/2022 - 15:00

The veteran of the Miami Heat is all in for one last season.

Udonis Haslem announced Sunday that the 2022-23 NBA season will be his last after contemplating retirement this summer. He broke the news on the last day of his Basketball and Cheer Camp that was held at Miami Senior High School, his alma matter.

One of the main reasons for Haslem’s decision to return was his father, Johnnie, who passed away in August of last year. Johnnie and his son always discussed the goal of playing two decades worth of NBA basketball, now Haslem plans on fulfilling that plan.

“I have decided to follow through on what me and my father, and my father talked about,” Haslem announced. “I will finished what I started, I will play 20 years. I will play this year because I talked about that with my father and that’s the root of it. It won’t be the same, it won’t be as easy, but the goal still remains the same. Win and win a championship.”

Haslem, 42, will be the oldest active player in the NBA and is entering his 20th season in the league, all with the Heat after going undrafted in 2003 out of the University of Florida. He is the organization’s all-time leading rebounder, is second in games played behind Dwyane Wade and ranks top 10 all-time in multiple statistical categories for the Heat including blocks, steals, field goals made, field goals attempted, among others.

His career averages are 7.5 points and 6.6 rebounds per game, but his impact goes way beyond hardwood.

In addition to being a key contributor on each of Miami’s three championship teams, Haslem has also become the embodiment of the organization’s signature Heat culture, making sure everyone on the roster lives up to the high standard set by team president Pat Riley and that flows throughout the building.

The precedent that he’s set in the building has made a big impact on the Heat’s other stars like Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo and Tyler Herro.

“How he helps prepare me for battle is unreal. He’s been through it all and seen it all,” Adebayo told Yahoo Sports in May. “And in practice, he’s one of the strongest guys you’ll face. That can’t do nothing but get me better. You have to pay attention when he’s talking because you know it’s coming from a place of wanting to see us all reach our heights.”

Riley and coach Erik Spoelstra have cited on multiple occasions how important Haslem has been in carrying on the DNA of those title-winning teams to the current younger core, who have made it to the Eastern Conference Finals in two out of the past three seasons.

Although his minutes per game have dwindled over the past several seasons, Haslem has served as almost another coach on the bench, always animated and ready to give his team a stern talking to when needed.

“You can’t ask for a better, selfless leader to still be engaged and helps better our program,” Spoelstra told Yahoo Sports “He’s all about how can he best help the team. Players think they’re willing to do whatever it takes until they’re asked to sacrifice. UD optimizes what a true winner is in every regard.”

Haslem isn’t expecting much in terms of send-off for his 20th season in the league, and he does not really want one. Seeing his teammates succeed is enough of a goodbye tour for him.

“It’s been a sacrifice, willingly, openly without asking for anything in return,” Haslem said. ”Watching Bam Adebayo play and get his contract and Caleb Martin get his contract and the James Johnson’s and those guys, that’s the farewell tour I want. That’s what I get out of it, that’s my gratification.”

While he’s not quite ready to hang it up yet, there’s no doubt that Haslem’s number 40 jersey will be hanging in the rafters of FTX arena when all is said done.

And he knows exactly what he wants to do when he finally does retire, continue contributing to the Heat culture in a bigger way and give more to the organization that he’s already dedicated two decades to.

“After I finish this season, I want to continue to be a part of the organization at the highest level,” Haslem said. “I want to sit next to Pat. I want to sit next to Andy [Elisburg]. I want to sit next to Micky [Arison], and continue to lead at that level. That’s what’s next for me.”

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Categories: Local News

Your Wednesday Evening Briefing

N.Y. Times - Wed, 08/24/2022 - 15:00
Here’s what you need to know at the end of the day.
Categories: Local News

Chicago Bulls guard Zach LaVine and wife Hunter announce the birth of their 1st child, Saint Thomas

San Jose Mercury - Wed, 08/24/2022 - 14:59

Zach LaVine and his wife, Hunter, on Sunday welcomed their first child, Saint Thomas, the Chicago Bulls guard announced Wednesday on Twitter.

After signing a maximum five-year, $215.2 million contract extension with the Bulls in July, LaVine expressed excitement and nerves over his new role as a father.

“That’s bigger than basketball, bigger than everything,” the two-time All-Star said. “I’m nervous, anxious, excited. … I know how to play basketball — but this is something I haven’t done yet.”

LaVine, 27, has focused on growth and recovery this offseason. He spent most of the summer in Los Angeles after undergoing arthroscopic surgery on his left knee in May to address discomfort that plagued him for the latter half of the 2021-22 season.

LaVine will have a little more than a month to adjust to his role as a new parent before reporting to Chicago in September for training camp.

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Categories: Local News

Across U.S., Native groups seek to repair lands damaged by colonization

Seattle Times - Wed, 08/24/2022 - 14:57

Tribes and other Native groups from the Great Plains to the Pacific Northwest are seeking to repair lands altered by European colonization.
Categories: Local News

San Jose’s proposal to allow non-citizens to vote could be in trouble after San Francisco ruling

San Jose Mercury - Wed, 08/24/2022 - 14:49

San Jose is considering whether to allow non-citizens to vote in local elections, but the controversial proposal could be in legal jeopardy before it even makes its way to the ballot box.

The idea was proposed earlier this year by council members Magdalena Carrasco and Sylvia Arenas as a way to give a voice to residents who play a critical role in the community but are unable to participate in the democratic process and select their representatives. The move could affect non-citizens such as undocumented immigrants and legal non-citizens who are green card holders or have the right to study or work in the U.S.

More than a dozen cities in the U.S. currently allow non-citizen voting in local elections — most of them in Maryland. But locally, the concept is facing legal challenges.

San Francisco voters approved a measure in 2016 that allowed non-citizens — both undocumented and legal residents — to vote in school board elections if they had a child in the district. But two conservative nonprofits, the United States Justice Foundation and the California Public Policy Foundation, sued the city, arguing it was unconstitutional.

On July 29, San Francisco Superior Court Judge Richard B. Ulmer, Jr. struck down the law, citing a portion of the California Constitution that says, “A United States citizen 18 years of age and resident in this state may vote.” The city had argued that “may vote” isn’t restrictive — a notion that Ulmer rejected.

Litigation in Oakland has followed suit, with the same groups suing the city to try to keep a similar measure off the November ballot.

San Jose city attorney Nora Frimann said she believes San Francisco intends to file an appeal.

The uncertainty around the legality of non-citizen voting is enough for Mayor Sam Liccardo to want to hit the pause button on the issue.

“There’s going to be a lot of courts weighing in on this over the next year and a half or so,” he said. “It seems to me for us to be spending a lot of time on this issue before we even know whether or not it’s lawful is probably not the best use of our time.”

While no decision was made during a study session of the issue at Tuesday’s San Jose City Council meeting, Carrasco indicated her desire to move forward.

“It’s up to local jurisdictions to decide and create an environment where those who are contributing, who are participating and who want to engage have an opportunity to do so safely and legally,” she said. “And what we’re seeing throughout the country is that there is a real move towards voter suppression of folks who have previously been disengaged, who have previously been disenfranchised and when we have opportunities to truly bring them into the conversation, there’s a sense of threat.”

The proposal garnered an overwhelming amount of support on Tuesday from residents — many from immigrant communities.

Jose Servin, the advocacy director for immigrant rights group SIREN, called it an “opportunity to take a step forward and expand the American imagination.” He said many residents who are barred from voting because of their citizenship status have fought for worker protections, canvassed and helped register individuals to vote despite their own inability to do so.

“We’re not talking about giving anybody a handout,” he said. “I’ve stood shoulder to shoulder with some of these people back here, countless members of the undocumented community, DACA recipients like me, TPS holders, people awaiting visas and many other people defined by the legal limbo that they’re stuck in to make our voice heard one way or another.”

Many of those speaking out in opposition argued that voting is a right, not a privilege.

“I believe it devalues the value of citizenship,” said Shane Patrick Connolly, the chair of the Santa Clara County Republican Party. “It was hard-earned by many of our great citizens here in San Jose.”

Allowing non-citizens to vote could be costly to the city of San Jose. The city of New York, which recently had its law struck down by a judge as well, estimated that it would add $4 million to its 2023-2024 fiscal year election costs to have an additional 900,000 non-citizen voters.

City clerk Toni Taber was unable to provide an exact number of how much it would cost but said they would need to factor in ballot design and printing, mailing, staff time, outreach, translations and postage. With an estimated number of possible non-citizen voters of 97,847, that base cost would be $260,274. The city would also need to budget an additional $600,000 to conduct outreach.

San Jose spent $2.2 million on the June 2022 election, but that included shared printing costs with other cities. A non-citizen ballot would have to be printed separately, with the city bearing the full costs.

Councilmember Dev Davis, who was the sole individual who voted against studying the proposal back in January, continued to vehemently oppose the idea on Tuesday.

“We are the most thinly staffed police department of any big city in America,” she said. “We are the most thinly staffed city in all of the United States. I can’t justify spending more than double what we already spend on elections when we don’t have enough police officers to keep everybody safe.”

If San Jose does decide to move forward with non-citizen voting, it would first have to be approved by the voters at the ballot box.

Categories: Local News

Dave Hyde: New flash, old concern surface in Dolphins’ good test against Philadelphia

San Jose Mercury - Wed, 08/24/2022 - 14:45

There’s two simple ways to see where the new-look Miami Dolphins’ offense stands after being tested Wednesday by Philadelphia’s muscle-bound defense.

On the one hand, Dolphins receiver Tyreek Hill was the star of the day. He ran away from Pro Bowl cornerback Darius Slay in the first moment Wednesday and confirmed throughout practice the electricity he brings.

On the other hand, this Dolphins offensive line struggled again, as if we’re drifting back to the line-less nightmare of 2015. Or 2012. Or 2007. Or, well, pick a year, almost any year, in the past couple of decades. Bring some aspirin, too.

There’s the Dolphins offense in two parts in late August. Everyone is fixated on quarterback Tua Tagovailoa — for good and obvious reason. He’s the centerpiece. He’s the reason the Dolphins tanked in 2019. He’s in a prove-it season to not just be good, but on the road to great for this grand plan to succeed.

This offseason was about getting Tagovailoa enough parts to let his game matter. And there’s a mixed message of how that looks heading into the season. Right now, you see the speed that can run away from everyone and the line that can’t be ignored by anyone.

These issues are married in many ways, too. To take full advantage of Hill and his speedy partner, Jaylen Waddle, the Dolphins need this line to be serviceable. Not great. Not even good, if it comes to that. But average. Functional. Can it get there?

Because there was Hill running free and easy Wednesday, showing what this offense can be. He and Tua connected for a few medium-sized passes in the scrimmage with the Eagles, the exact kind of passes Tua didn’t complete with lesser receivers, the kind Hill has made a career of making.

“Teams aren’t going to be able to cover 10 and 17,” Dolphins tackle Terron Armstead said, referring to Hill and Waddle.

Waddle missed Wednesday due to some nagging injury. But you can see the dynamic fun this offense will have if Tua’s allowed to pull all the levers. The concern came in the one-on-one drills, as Philadelphia bullied the Dolphins’ line too much.

It’s still the practice portion of the summer. Philadelphia, again, has a top-10 defensive front. So these practices are one way to improve, and Dolphins coach Mike McDaniel no doubt knows this has to improve for his offense to work.

Wednesday’s test only reinforced this further. While Tua couldn’t be hit and was throwing freely to receivers, the first two runs by Raheem Mostert went nowhere. That’s how it went too much of the day, too unless you count …

… guard Liam Eichenberg getting beat by third-year tackle Milton Williams for a 3-yard loss.

… Right tackle Austin Jackson struggling once or twice — OK, maybe a few times — against an edge rusher like Haason Reddick.

The best running play? A fake up the middle and pitch to Hill running behind Tua from his receiver position. That went for 12 yards. There’s the speed again to elude defenses.

The as-advertised rock of the line is Armstead. He manhandled whoever was put in front of him. As long as he’s healthy this season, this line has a solid foundation.

We’re still in the learning-curve portion of the summer for the rest of the line, from Jackson moving to right tackle, Connor Williams moving to center and Eichenberg moving to left guard. These are new positions to learn as well as a new offense. McDaniel and Tua say not worry about the running game. Fullback Alec Ingold went further.

“We’re going to have a smashmouth, physical run game, and those guys are going to bring the speed, and we’re going to mesh well,” Ingold said. “Hopefully I can open some things up for them. That’s why I’m here. I’m here to serve everybody else on this offense. Hopefully I can do that for the passing game as well.”

Could Ingold be the X-factor to move the needle? It’s August, a time to be open to any idea. Philadelphia’s strong defense underlined how this Dolphins line needs to improve, though.

Hill showed for another day how this offense can be dynamic. This line showed how far it stands from getting there. It’s still August, a time for feeling good and optimism. But September’s realism looms.

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Categories: Local News

Head-butting robbery suspect arrested at Richmond BART station

San Jose Mercury - Wed, 08/24/2022 - 14:44

RICHMOND — A San Pablo man was head-butted and had his cell phone stolen Tuesday morning at the Richmond BART Station by another man who was later arrested, authorities said Wednesday.

The robbery happened about 8:42 a.m. Tuesday on the platform at the station.

BART officials said the suspect did not know the 58-year-old victim, who required hospitalization for his injuries.

The suspect, a 30-year-old Oakland man, was arrested fleeing the station. The cell phone was recovered and the victim identified him as his attacker, officials said.

Related Articles

The suspect, who according to jail records is 5 feet 8 and weighs 220 pounds, was booked at the Martinez Detention Center on suspicion of robbery and was being held Wednesday in lieu of $50,000 bail.

Categories: Local News

Palo Alto council approves new safe parking lot amid resident backlash

San Jose Mercury - Wed, 08/24/2022 - 14:36

PALO ALTO — Despite backlash from residents, city leaders have agreed to move forward with a safe parking plan at a neighborhood church to deal with the rise in people living in vehicles in Palo Alto.

Council members voted 5-2 this week — with Vice Mayor Lydia Kou and Councilman Greg Tanaka dissenting — to allow overnight parking of up to four vehicles at the First Congregational Church of Palo Alto on Louis Road, adding to the eight other spaces at two already existing safe parking programs in churches across town.

For years Palo Alto has seen a jump in the number of residents who live in cars or RVs parked on city streets, a consequence of the regional housing crisis which has led to similar increases in homelessness and people living in cars across nearby cities as well.

The decision to allow the new program had initially been appealed by a group of neighbors, some of whom argued Monday they needed more time to review it and address safety concerns. While most of the people who spoke during Monday’s meeting urged the council to approve the program, many of the church’s neighbors like Randy Stolenberg pushed back against the plan.

“As a member of the faith community, we applaud the faith community for helping those less fortunate among us,” Stolenberg said. “The proposed parking situation, I feel, does not service another duty we have which is to look out for the innocent including our children.”

Stolenberg brought up several safety concerns other neighbors also had, including whether people participating in the safe parking program should be subjected to background checks. Without a background check, Stolenberg said, “it’s not safe for our children to bring people in who haven’t been appropriately checked.“

Stolenberg wasn’t alone in his concerns about public safety. Karen Latchford, who lives a half block away from the church, said living in vehicles “shouldn’t be something we should be encouraging or establishing. Other people opposed to the program expressed fears about drugs in the area, fire hazards and “peeping toms.”

Rohin Ghosh, a recent graduate of Palo Alto High School, disagreed with his neighbors’ comments. He said people who live in vehicles “are residents of this city just like everyone else” and should be treated with dignity and have a “safe place to live.”

“It’s interesting about safety risks of bringing in new people because you don’t hear that risk come up when just any other person moves in next door to you,” Ghosh said. “If a new person moves in next to me, I’m not going to be asking for background checks, I don’t think it should be any different here. Just because the people moving in here are poor doesn’t mean they’ll bring crime.”

Iris Zhang, a Ph.D. candidate at Stanford University and Palo Alto resident, also was troubled by her neighbors’ remarks about people who live in vehicles. Zhang spoke about the hypocrisy of worrying about poor people doing crimes while being surrounded by wealthy people who commit crimes.

“I’ve been a Palo Alto renter for three years and I have a job, and as you all know people who have stable places to live and who have jobs have never committed crimes, so please don’t worry about me or the future Elizabeth Holmes’s being incubated here,” Zhang said sarcastically. “All sarcasm aside, please don’t let these unfounded and unscientific bogeymen arguments stop us from doing the right thing here.”

Council members who voted in favor of the program did not comment on their votes as the program was being considered under the council’s consent agenda. But Tanaka and Kou, who voted against, expressed their own concerns about the program.

Kou said she felt “very disappointed” by the program because “there hasn’t been enough trust established” between the city and the community.

“I’d like to see that the right program is implemented with a lot of the comments and suggestions so we can put together a program that moves forward without appeals,” Kou said. “There’s a lot of nasty things that were said and it’s unfortunate that it’s so divisive when we’re all trying to do the right thing. There was an appeal and a rebuttal by our staff, it’s only right the neighbors can come here and rebut the staff.”

Tanaka also worried about the lack of support in the community for this project.

“There should’ve been more discussion on it,” Tanaka said. “It’s unfortunate we had to vote up or down. The idea is that it’s a pilot program, a way to prove success in the community so maybe more places could do this. But by trying to resolve these issues, by forcing this issue, you build animosity in the neighborhood and you don’t set up the program for success.”

Categories: Local News

Zeeks pizza chain to pay $409K after alleged service charge violation

Seattle Times - Wed, 08/24/2022 - 14:31

Seattle restaurants are required to disclose how much of their service charge goes back to employees, but the city alleges Zeeks failed to make that disclosure.
Categories: Local News

Rage Against the Machine, Roaring On

N.Y. Times - Wed, 08/24/2022 - 14:29
A conversation about the band’s return, its evolving message and the nature of comeback tours.
Categories: Local News

Bay Area arts: Here are 7 cool shows and fests to see this weekend

San Jose Mercury - Wed, 08/24/2022 - 14:29

There is a lot to see, hear and do this weekend in Bay Area. Here’s a partial rundown.

A Berkeley ‘Goddess’ takes wing

Musical acts ranging from Green Day to the Temptations to the Avett Brothers have launched musicals at Berkeley Repertory Theatre that went on to Broadway runs. Now the Goddess Marimba is hoping to do the same thing. Well, sort of.

According to Zulu legend, Marimba was a goddess cursed by her own mother to be disastrously unlucky in love. “Goddess,” a new musical getting its world premiere at Berkeley Rep beginning this week, is set in a thriving Mombasa, Kenya, Afro-jazz nightclub, where a riveting singer casts a spell on everyone present, including a young man who’s come home from America, and is expected to assume his political lineage in a powerful family and marry his fiancee. How exactly the Myth of Marimba plays into the story we have no idea, but, frankly, they had us at the thriving Mombasa Afro-jazz nightclub part.

“Goddess” features a book by Jocelyn Bioh (“School Girls; Or, the African Mean Girls Play”) and music and lyrics by Michael Thurber. The work was conceived by Saheem Ali, a Kenya native, who also directs the show. Bioh, Thurber and Ali teamed up in a much-acclaimed revival of “Merry Wives of Windsor” in Central Park a few years back. Expect the music to be out of this world and the story to be entrancing. “Goddess” plays Aug. 24-Sept. 25 at Berkeley Rep’s Roda Theatre. Tickets are $30-$138; go to www.berkeleyrep.org.

Read more about the show here.

— Bay Area News Foundation

Silicon Valley’s Comic-Con returns

SiliCon is an annual pop culture and technology convention — essentially the Silicon Valley’s answer to Comic-Con — and it’s back this weekend.

This year’s event offers something for everyone, featuring big names in pop culture, tech, science, makers, artists, cosplay, gaming, comic creators and authors.

You’re invited to sit in on panels from the best in science and tech, such as NASA astronaut Kjell N. Lindgren, who will join via livestream from aboard the International Space Station. SiliCon will also feature celebrity guests, of course, such as Christopher Lloyd (from “Back to the Future”) George Takei (“Star Trek”), Karen Gillan from (“Guardians of the Galaxy” and “Doctor Who”) and Kari Byron and Tory Belleci (the Bay Area set “MythBusters”).

Also on the guest list is the engineer Frank Pillar — aka Frankly Built — known for creating famed cosplay Iron Man suits, and many more.

Centered around the theme of “Creating the Improbable,” SiliCon is not just about listening to your science and celebrity heroes talk about their creations, but also about building your own. This event has a dedicated Makerverse, where makers of all ages and experience levels are invited to explore a 4,500-square-foot creation area hosted by SiliCon creative director and famed special effects designer Adam Savage (another “MythBusters” alum).

Details: Event begins 10 a.m. Saturday and Sunday; San Jose Convention Center, 150 W. San Carlos St., San Jose; tickets and weekend passes range $35-$400, with child, senior citizen and military discounts; siliconsj.com.

— Brittany Delay, Staff

Roger Dean’s work “The Quest” is on display at the Haight Street Art Center. (Haight Street Art Center)  Roger Dean’s eye-popping album covers in S.F.

Back in the days when people listened to albums and bands hired artists to create stunning images for their album covers, U.K. artist Roger Dean’s artwork was ubiquitous and unmistakable.

His trippy imagery that appeared on album covers for prog rock bands like Asia and especially Yes were unforgettable (even if you didn’t like them). He also designed the well-known logos for the band Yes as well as for Virgin Records, and later branched into home decorations, creating the famed “retreat pods” that were a pop culture hit and appeared in Stanley Kubrick’s film “The Clockwork Orange.”

Dean generously passed on his eclectic talents to his daughter Freyja, who has embarked on a her own career defined by dreamy, otherworldly images.

Together the two Deans have launched a touring exhibit, “The Secret Path: The Art of Roger and Freyja Dean,” that opens this weekend at, appropriately enough, the Haight Street Art Center, in the heart of a neighborhood where trippy imagery is par for the course.

More than 50 works from the father-daughter team will be on hand, including paintings, drawings, sculptures, fabric art and other items. As Deans notes, “We are all fellow travelers on the secret path of life. The signposts along the way are our art works, but the destination — the future — belongs to everyone.”

Details: Exhibit runs Aug. 25 through Oct. 30; 215 Haight St. at Laguna Street; Noon-6 p.m. Thursdays through Sundays; admission free but donations encouraged; haightstreetart.org.

— Randy McMullen, Staff

A Brazilian buffet for music fans

Fans of Brazilian music, with its lively rhythms, delicate melodies and adventuresome spirit, are in luck this weekend. The iconic guitarist, composer and singer Guinga arrives for the first of several shows he’s lined up in the Bay Area. Meanwhile, the Bay Area-based Choro Ensemble also has a show planned.

Guinga’s arrival is keenly anticipated, first because his musicianship and composing is revered around the world (his songs have been covered by artists including Sergio Mendes, Elis Regina and Ivan Lins, among many others) and also because he rarely comes to the Bay Area. He performs at 8 p.m. Saturday at the Sound Room, 3022 Broadway, Oakland, accompanied by singer Anna Paes. Tickets are $22.50-$27.50 and going fast. If you can’t catch him Saturday, you have other chances: He’ll perform during the Lavagem Festival Sept. 4 in Berkeley (www.brasarte.com), and as part of a trio featuring the terrific singer Cladia Villela and sax and clarinet player Nailor “Proveta” Azevedo Sept. 7 at Kuumba Jazz Center in Santa Cruz (www.kuumbwajazz.org) and Sept. 8 at San Jose’s Hammer Theatre Center (hammertheatre.com). Meanwhile, you can catch the acclaimed Choro Ensemble, a group of terribly talented musicians that formed in 2010, Sunday in concert with a few musical guests at St. Alban’s Episcopal Church, 1501 Washington Ave., Albany. Music starts at 4 p.m. Tickets are $15-$25; go to www.calliope-ebma.org.

— Bay Area News Foundation

Courtney Barnett brings tour to Stanford

Australian singer-songwriter-guitarist Courtney Barnett apparently was bitten hard by the rock ‘n’ roll bug at an early age. Not only did she dream of being of musician but she envisioned starting her own touring rock festival, even designing the commemorative T-shirts.

Those dreams have come to fruition for Barnett (we’ll, we’re not sure about the T-shirts). Not only is she an acclaimed rock singer-songwriter, but she has launched a 15-stop U.S. touring festival that comes to Stanford’s Frost Amphitheatre on Friday.

Barnett, known for her fuzzy, low-fi alt-rock sound, nimble guitar work, sharp lyrics and deadpan delivery, broke through with the 2015 album “Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit,” which made her a critics’ favorite in her native Australia and the U.S. Her last album, “Things Take Time, Take Time,” released late last year, drew similarly rave reviews.

Her touring Here and There Festival (the name is taken from a song she wrote when was 10 years old) features the alt-pop band Japanese Breakfast, fronted by the Korean American artist Michelle Zauner; L.A. soul/psychedelic-rock band Chicano Batman; and fellow Aussie singer-songwriter Julia Jacklin.

Details: 6 p.m. Aug. 26; $49.50-$59.50; live.stanford.edu.

— Randy McMullen, Staff

Italian fest returns to North Beach

If you’re Jonesin’ for a little Italian food and culture this weekend, head to North Beach on Aug. 27 for the annual Festa Coloniale Italiana.

Featuring a wide mix of music, dance, acrobatic and even a pizza-dough-tossing act — and of course lots to eat and drink — the festival takes place 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday along Stockton Street, between Union and Filbert. There will also be numerous food and wide purveyors as well as booths representing such Bay Area vendors as Lianna Soap, Giovanni’s Specialities, True Delicious, Zoe Aquila Jewelry, Amelia Imports and more.

Performers include Bella Ciao, Ricco Italian Dancers, acrobats from the cast of “dear San Francisco,” world champion pizza tosser Tony Gemignani, and accordionist Steve Albini and Il Sole.

There will also be kids entertainment zone with a puppet show, face painting and dance lessons.

Details: Free admission; more information at www.sfiacfoundation.com.

— Randy McMullen, Staff

Categories: Local News

Collin Johnson tears right Achilles the same day Sterling Shepard returns

San Jose Mercury - Wed, 08/24/2022 - 14:20

The Giants lost a starting-caliber receiver to injury the same day they got one back.

Collin Johnson tore his right Achilles during Tuesday’s practice, the same afternoon that Sterling Shepard made his training camp debut.

Johnson, 24, has been the standout of the Giants’ camp. He had earned regular first-team reps, and his 6-foot-6 frame had given the offense a high-functioning big receiver target with Kenny Golladay off to a slow start.

“The guys who have been out there and are producing – guys like Collin Johnson and David Sills – they’ve stepped up and they’re right in the mix, not just to make the team but to play,” head coach Brian Daboll had said Monday.

The Giants’ projected Week 1 starters at receiver seem to be Shepard, Golladay and second-round rookie Wan’Dale Robinson.

Sills is pushing for a large role. Kadarius Toney continues to spend more time on one knee at practice than he does on two feet.

His right hamstring appeared to be bothering him Tuesday during his only work in individuals. He has failed to fully practice in 10 of the team’s 17 practices this summer.

Darius Slayton continues to work on the side after he “tightened up” in the Giants’ preseason opener at New England. He projects as an end-of-camp cut. It’s not clear if injuries to other players can change that.

The Giants claimed wide receiver Jaylon Moore off waivers from the Baltimore Ravens on Tuesday, too.

Moore, 25, a 6-2, 190-pound wideout, spent the last two seasons on the Ravens’ practice squad. He was having a good camp in Baltimore but was quiet in two preseason games.

At least Shepard, 29, is back after being activated off the physically unable to perform list.

The veteran Giant has a good rapport with Jones, having played three seasons together. He looked strong on Tuesday in his first practice since tearing his left Achilles on Dec. 19.

He ran in motion with Jones’ first-string offense on one play Tuesday, and he caught a pass from backup QB Tyrod Taylor up the left side.

“It felt great, man, just being back on the field,” Shepard said after practice.

Shepard took a pay cut this offseason on a restructured contract to remain with the team. It’s a good thing he did.

They need him.

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Categories: Local News

What’s a Pell grant? How it affects student loan forgiveness

Seattle Times - Wed, 08/24/2022 - 14:14

President Joe Biden’s student loan forgiveness program announced on Wednesday aims to provide $10,000 in student debt cancellation for millions of Americans.
Categories: Local News

Memo Details Barr’s Justifications Not to Prosecute Trump

N.Y. Times - Wed, 08/24/2022 - 14:08
An unredacted document released by court order showed how in 2019, Justice Department lawyers argued against pursuing obstruction charges against President Donald J. Trump.
Categories: Local News

Column: Is the Chicago Bears offense as bad as the 0-16 Detroit Lions of 2008? Mike Martz says QB Justin Fields has little chance.

San Jose Mercury - Wed, 08/24/2022 - 14:07

Chicago Bears fans will want to yell at Mike Martz the way Jay Cutler used to when they hear Martz’s assessment of the team’s current offense.

There’s a dose of hope locally for what the Bears can become with the team in the early stages of rebuilding under new general manager Ryan Poles and first-year coach Matt Eberflus. That optimism isn’t shared on a national level.

Now Martz — a guy with a proven record as a head coach and offensive mind — is saying the Bears don’t just look bad on offense, they’re as deficient on that side of the ball as the 2008 Detroit Lions, the first NFL team to go 0-16.

In an article for The 33rd Team — an online publication with a collection of former league executives on its roster, including Hall of Famers Bill Polian and Bill Parcells — Martz didn’t hold back in his review of the Bears with the season less than three weeks away.

Of course, Martz is familiar with the challenges offensive coordinators have faced at Halas Hall. He held the position in 2010 and 2011, directing the offense the last time the Bears won a playoff game. It was known at the time he and Cutler clashed on occasion.

Since then, Bears play callers have seemingly disappeared in the Bermuda Triangle as the team went from Martz to Mike Tice, Marc Trestman, Adam Gase, Dowell Loggains, Matt Nagy, Bill Lazor, back to Nagy and then Lazor again. Only Nagy, who found a soft landing with his former team as the Kansas City Chiefs quarterbacks coach, is currently employed in the league.

Martz’s scathing assessment of the Bears offense came in an article in which he ranked the NFC North quarterbacks. In order, he went with Aaron Rodgers (Green Bay Packers), Kirk Cousins (Minnesota Vikings), Jared Goff (Detroit Lions) and Justin Fields (Bears). Martz’s concern is that the Bears are so bad around Fields, he won’t have a chance.

“Fields is a guy that makes a lot of mistakes and is not particularly accurate at times,” Martz wrote. “He’s not a quick read-and-react guy, and he’s on a horrendous team. But I don’t know if I’ve seen an offense that bad in talent since the 0-16 Detroit Lions. They just don’t have anybody there. … It’s a bad football team right now.”

Martz has an idea of what the Lions were working with in 2008. He was their offensive coordinator in the two seasons before that debacle.

He’s not the only one who has been skeptical of the players around Fields. Ross Tucker ranked the Bears offensive line last in the league by a wide margin before the team signed veterans Riley Reiff and Michael Schofield. Tucker knows a little something about play in the trenches as a former NFL offensive lineman.

Interestingly, neither Reiff nor Schofield has been with the first team much the last few weeks. The Bears appear to be betting on the upside of a handful of young players in rookie Braxton Jones at left tackle and second-year pros Teven Jenkins at right guard and Larry Borom at right tackle. The outlook for this group could be brighter by midseason.

The Bears have question marks at wide receiver after Darnell Mooney. Byron Pringle remains sidelined with a quadriceps injury. That has allowed Equanimeous St. Brown to make plays throughout training camp. His career high of 21 receptions came in 2018. Then there’s rookie Velus Jones and more unknowns at the position.

“It’s going to take a long time for them to get talent there,” Martz wrote. “(Fields) needs to be on a good football team behind really good players for a couple of years to learn how to play the position. And when you put a guy behind a bad offensive line and you have no talent at wide receiver and you tell him to just go make big plays, he’s going to learn bad habits. You start doing stupid stuff just trying to survive.”

The new regime didn’t inherit a ton of pieces from an offense that ranked 27th in yards and scoring, 30th in passing and 32nd in interception rate and third-down conversions a year ago. Poles clearly is taking a long view of the rebuilding process with the Bears getting the salary cap in order for the future. They are far from being one piece away, so they didn’t make any extravagant purchases in the offseason. Poles also lacked a first-round pick as the Bears finished paying for the trade up to draft Fields at No. 11 in 2021.

Offensive coordinator Luke Getsy arrived from Green Bay with impressive credentials and glowing praise from Rodgers for his role in the Packers’ juggernaut offense. He’s building from the ground up, knowing far more patience is required than the coaching staff had to extend in Green Bay.

“There’s a balance between demand and patience and setting an expectation and letting them know it’s not OK for some things,” Getsy said last week when he last met with reporters. “Then at some points you always have to remember to go pat them on the back and let them know that you care about them, too, because I do.

“There’s got to be a demand too. There’s got to be an expectation. We set our standards really high, and I don’t care if it was three months or three years into this thing. So we’ve got to meet those standards.”

Standards are very high internally. Expectations are very low when you get away from Halas Hall. The Bears can’t offer much defense for their offense until the season begins.

Perhaps this is one reason Eberflus announced starters will play most if not all of the first half in the preseason finale Saturday night in Cleveland. The offensive line needs more cohesion. Fields needs more experience in the system. The wide receivers need more work.

It’s a process, and most involved probably would admit it’s going to be a long one. Martz is predicting a painful process, so yell at him for now. Maybe Fields and Co. will be able to yell at him one day, too, and let him know he was wrong.

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Categories: Local News

Mario Batali Settles 2 Sexual Misconduct Lawsuits

N.Y. Times - Wed, 08/24/2022 - 14:05
The celebrity chef has reached an agreement with two women who accused him of grabbing them in separate incidents in Boston.
Categories: Local News

Sylvester Stallone’s Rottweiler purchase, without wife’s OK, spurred big fight and divorce, report says

San Jose Mercury - Wed, 08/24/2022 - 14:02

Sylvester Stallone’s love of big, tough-looking dogs has been getting him into trouble lately, including triggering an “extremely heated fight” with his wife, Jennifer Flavin, that led to her filing for divorce after 25 years of marriage, a new report says.

Flavin, 54, was angry that Stallone, 76, went ahead and purchased a Rottweiler — to use for “protection” for his family, he said — even though she was emphatic that she didn’t want another dog, sources told TMZ Wednesday, soon after news broke that Flavin had filed for divorce. 

Both were unwilling to compromise on the dog, TMZ reported. The “Rocky” star might have inflamed tensions by posting photos and videos of himself with his new Rottweiler, whom he named Dwight. On Instagram he said he named Dwight in honor of the crime boss he plays on the new TV series, “Tulsa King.” In another post, Stallone said, “DWIGHT. Definitely a true friend! KeepPunching And Keep barking!”

Stallone is getting divorced cause his wife didn’t want him to get a Rottweiler……

Stallone GOAT 🐐 pic.twitter.com/kYrYAl4c44

— Stream the Vote (@StreamtheVote) August 24, 2022

TMZ’s sources aren’t saying that Flavin sought to end one of Hollywood’s most enduring marriages because she was mad that her husband bought a dog without her consent. The sources said the argument about the dog brought up other issues between the couple, none that on their own could be called a “marriage ender.”

Stallone also didn’t see the dispute about the dog or other issues between them as “marriage enders” either and is “shocked” that Flavin filed for divorce, TMZ’s sources said. The actor believed that he and his wife could work things out.

Page Six and other outlets reported Wednesday that Flavin had filed paperwork to dissolve her marriage to Stallone in Palm Beach County, Florida, on Aug. 19. Stallone’s marriage to Flavin was his third.

In a statement to People, Stallone said that he loves his family and that he and Flavin “are amicably and privately addressing these personal issues.” In her filing, Flavin accused Stallone of hiding marital assets, alleging that her estranged husband “has engaged in the intentional dissipation, depletion and/or waste of marital assets which has had an adverse economic impact on the marital estate,” Vanity Fair reported. 

In the past few days, Stallone has demonstrated that he has a blind spot when it comes to his dogs. Earlier this week, the actor faced questions about being rude to Flavin when he posed for photos that showed him having a large tattoo of her face on his bicep transformed into the face of another of his dogs.

Before and after images of Sylvester Stallone's right bicep.

😂😂😂😂 Tattoos can be a problem 😉 pic.twitter.com/3L39iXN1b0

— Jackie Lumbasi (@JackieLumbasi) August 23, 2022

The photos were shared on Instagram Aug. 16 by tattoo artist Zach Perez, who showed that Stallone was having Flavin’s face replaced with the face of Butkus, his late bullmastiff who appeared in the original “Rocky” and its first sequel. Both bullmastiffs and Rottweilers are known as medium- to large-sized muscular dogs that have a strong protective instinct for their owners, according to the American Kennel Club.

After many Stallone fans commented on the post, asking whether Flavin was hurt by what appeared to be a shady move, Perez deleted the slideshow from his feed, but the tattoo photos also prompted questions about the status of Stallone and Flavin’s marriage, as did a photo that Flavin shared to Instagram on Aug. 10. The photo showed Flavin and their three daughters, hugging. “These girls are my priority,” Flavin wrote. “Nothing else matters. The 4 of us forever.”

The Daily Mail reported that Flavin was no longer following her husband on Instagram.

Categories: Local News

Study: Pfizer COVID pill showed no benefit in younger adults

Seattle Times - Wed, 08/24/2022 - 14:02

Pfizer’s COVID-19 pill appears to provide little or no benefit for younger adults.
Categories: Local News

Transgender inmate’s suit against NC prison case can proceed

Seattle Times - Wed, 08/24/2022 - 13:53

A federal judge has ruled that the case of a transgender inmate suing North Carolina for gender affirming medical care can proceed.
Categories: Local News

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