Happy Monday, Berkeley.
It’s set to be nice and warm this week, so let’s make the most of it.
Sleep in on Monday, but not for too long — you’ll want to get to Pier 39 by midafternoon to see the sea lions. Hang out at the railing and watch them fight for the best spots of sun; maybe buy yourself a hot dog or some clam chowder and eat lunch out there, too.
If the sea lions won’t hold your attention for that long, walk down to Pier 15 and check out the Exploratorium. There’s a lot of science there and also a lot of art there. The new “Inflatable: Expanding Works of Art” exhibit is a standout, as are the exhibits about light — the Monochromatic Room is particularly neat. Or maybe sound is more your thing: Test your ability to locate sound with a pair of disorienting headphones. Whatever you like, this museum will probably have it.
When you’re all museum-ed out, find some dinner in the city. Maybe somewhere Italian, maybe somewhere Japanese. Maybe Café Claude if you’re in the mood for French.
And then head to the Rite Spot Cafe for “Misery Index: Monday Comedy at The Rite Spot.” This is a monthly showcase that brings together different stand-up comedians. The lineup for Monday features a mix of comics from #HellaFunny, SF Sketchfest, Cobb’s Comedy Club, Punch Line San Francisco and more. The event is free and is marketed as a way to “take the edge off your Monday.” Drinks are available for purchase for those of age.
Then on Tuesday, find your creative side at the Night Drawing Series at ARCH Art and Drafting Supplies. Bring your own supplies or purchase some there, and for $25, you can take a class with David Tenorio. If a class sounds too formal but you’re still in the mood to make some art, invite some friends over, make a lemon blueberry crisp, buy some Angry Orchard ciders and some origami paper, and make a night of it in the comfort of your own apartment. For a good nightcap, put down your pens and put on “Bachelor in Paradise.” The premiere of season five is set to air Tuesday night.
On Wednesday, hike up to the UC Botanical Garden and have an afternoon picnic. Order takeout to cart up the hill or make something on your own. And be sure to bring some good company to enjoy it with. If you feel so inclined, bring a speaker and a Spotify account and listen to some Nicki Minaj — she’s set to drop a new album Aug. 17, so there’s no better time to prepare.
On Thursday, get in the mood for Coheed and Cambria’s 6:30 p.m. show at Hearst Greek Theatre by watching the trailer for the upcoming film about Freddie Mercury, “Bohemian Rhapsody.” It may seem like an odd choice, but the progressive rock band has been compared to Queen, thanks to its concept albums. If you just got that last big paycheck before school starts, buy tickets to the show for yourself and a special someone, but beware: They cost nearly $50 each. Otherwise, I’ve heard the parking lot just next to the Foothill residence hall offers up great sonics, if subpar views. If you’re a light show fan, though, you might just want to splurge on tickets — Coheed and Cambria is known for its shows’ lighting designs.
Finally, close out the week by preparing for the Perseid meteor shower, which will peak Saturday and Sunday nights. Marathon the “Star Wars” movies, maybe, or “Interstellar,” or even “Gravity.” Put on the 2017 concept album “Planetarium,” featuring Sufjan Stevens, Bryce Dessner, James McAlister and Nico Muhly — my personal favorite song off the space-themed collaboration is “Mercury.” And if you need something crafty to while away your time before night settles and the meteors appear, try making a chalk pastel meteor shower. I’m sure the concept could work with oil pastels, too, or even watercolors. Give it a try, and let me know.
And if you need a pause from all the astronomical activities, check out my dear friend Shannon O’Hara’s 100th article for The Daily Californian. It’s a contemplation on comedy, a soliloquy to self-doubt — and it should be on everyone’s reading list.
Until next time.
Olivia Jerram is the assistant arts & entertainment editor. Contact her at [email protected].