Blog Fog: Lost In a Blog

by Steed Dropout
Dec. 20, 2011

Who am I now?

A formerly homeless reporter in Berkeley, Ca, or a “self-important” nobody with problems?

Dr. Tim, a friend of ten years has ended our friendship, saying I’m self-important. He called to ask if I’d read some lit book. I replied with, a world-weary rasp, “I’m too busy to read.” I was writing my latest yarn.

“That’s because you’re too self-important.” He always screams into the phone, because a stroke 15 years ago left him severely disabled. After flaming me, he hung up.

I could here discourse on the importance of self importance, but anyone could make the case. In short, self-importance is a relationship with someone you love. Do you want friends with low self-importance?

Ford Mustang flips near Telegraph Avenue. Photo by Ted Friedman.


Grandfather, uncle Ted (at Occupy Berkeley) , Medhead, drop-out reborn, hard-drinking pothead?

Sometimes, awakening in the morning, I rehearse my roles. This is all new to me. There are reporting skills I need to build, decisions awaiting on my self-assignments, and all the time, self-marketing, and public relations on the beat. It’s not that I’m self-important, but self-absorbed.

Which life do I report?


Caffe Mediterraneum, (7 articles) Telegraph, across from world-famous Moe’s books (see them listed). I had been known to arrive at opening, 7:30am, and leave at closing, 12am. I’d like to go this afternoon, but too many stories to nail.

The Med staff are medheads, too. Photo by Ted Friedman.

Small Business Administration recently opened an office near the Sequoia Apartment fire, which turned the heart of Telegraph into a stink-hole, and killed off business; must see whether small business loans could revive, what is now a “desolation row.”

Perhaps the re-birth of Telegraph, Berkeley’s Center, could emerge through SBA loans. But not going to happen according to Al Geyer, the owner of the oldest head shop on the Ave (1969). We chatted on Teley. Al knows all the business owners on Telegraph. “Nobody wants the loans, even the owners of the Sequoia,” (an 88-unit, built in 1916) said Al. Too much bullshit.”

Jawzilla lunching at Intermezzo Cafe, Telegraph Avenue. Photo by Ted Friedman.


UT (my sobriquet at Occupy Berkeley) is embroiled in a big beef at the Occupy Berkeley Camp, in which kitchen-master, Tyrece, has lost his tent to his tent-mate and is appealing for help — a hard sell help — on Telegraph. Tyrece, accused falsely, he says, of theft of OB money; he says he has receipts showing he spent camp funds as directed. I have to interview the tent mate, and am awaiting Tyrece’s documents proving he is dying of cancer.

This story could easily evaporate, as have others.

I bought Tyrece a beer at Kips, a Berkeley sports bar and local institution, where, as I told Tyrece, I hung out when homeless, 1979.

I also gave him an $18 rapid transit ticket so he could ride the rails all night.

Later, a camp source claimed Tyrece was a con-man. Could be, but for me, the money was well-spent. Tyrece is a sweet guy.

Stay tuned.

Uncle Ted, aka, Steed Dropout, Ted Friedman, writes for the Berkeley Daily Planet, Berkeley, Ca.

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