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See Men Sing 

Vintage tunes above decks

FRI 12/10

Say what you will about sea chanteys -- they're too long, just plain weird, and written in a bizarre seamen's patois -- but the folk music of the ocean is experiencing something of a revival among young creative types. Seems kids these days aren't as drawn to music that's too slick, just plain crap, and written in a bizarre suburban patois. The final installment of this year's "Sea Music Concert Series," aboard the sailing ship Balclutha, features Dick Holdstock and Allan MacLeod, sea chantey experts. Don't miss the chance to hear them amid the sounds of the water, the gulls, and the creaks and groans of that fine old vessel, starting at 8 p.m. at the Hyde Street Pier, Hyde & Jefferson, S.F. Admission is $14-16; call 561-6662 or visit
-- Hiya Swanhuyser

Cold Comfort

WED 12/8

"It's cold, but it's way better than toilet paper." That's the report of an experienced snow camper on using "a piece of snow crust" for butt-wiping. We hope that some more glamorous aspects of this unusual hobby are foregrounded at "Snowcamping 101," a lecture by the local chapter of the Sierra Club. Building shelters, using cross-country skis and snowshoes, and cooking in the snow kitchen are more likely subjects -- which is good, since it's also a slide show. The frosty info starts at 7 p.m. at REI, 840 Brannan (at Langton), S.F. Admission is free; call 934-1938 or visit
-- Hiya Swanhuyser

City Stroll
Berkeley's backwoods

SUN 12/12

Berkeley's so loaded with restaurants and cutesy little shops that it's tempting to think of it as a sort of overdeveloped shopping heaven. But hidden amid all the retail stores is a vast number of bucolic pockets to take you off the city's streets. Explore some of these underutilized havens at "Best of Berkeley," a 10-mile all-day hike that winds its way from downtown up through the quaint 'hoods of the hills and the terraced Berkeley Rose Garden, a lovely leftover from the Great Depression's WPA. Amblers then hoof it past Tilden Park and Grizzly Peak, hit the high Claremont Canyon Ridge, and return to the city proper once more. Start striding at 10:30 a.m. at the corner of Oxford and University (at the UC Berkeley entrance). The walk is free; call 255-3233 or visit
-- Joyce Slaton


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