This week, we need to rest and take care of ourselves. Cal students must prepare for an online-only semester; our community is still coping with the dangers of the coronavirus.
COMEDY QUEEN Get ready to laugh too hard, fall off your couch, and laugh some more. A monthly series, Lockdown Comedy, takes place every third Thursday of the month. This week, watch comic genius Cathy Ladman as she entertains us with her lovable neuroses. She has appeared on the Tonight Show nine times and on various late night shows. In addition to her comedy work, she is a TV and film actor and writer and has contributed to Curb Your Enthusiasm and King of Queens, among many others. She’ll get us laughing from our heads to our toes—good medicine. Thursday, Aug. 20. 7-8:15 p.m. Tickets start at $10.
QUEER MUSIC Need a little self-care anthem this week? You can look for it at I Need Space, a queer music festival running every third Sunday of the month. Each chapter of the festival, six queer musicians from all over the world will perform from their own spaces and broadcast their sessions online. This week, you’ll hear from talent like Zoe Boekbinder, Madeline Finn, Apollo Flowerchild, Heather Hills, Eli Conley, Rooster Blackspur, and Skip the Needle. Founders of the fest Genesis Fermin and Willa Mamet organized the first chapter just when shelter-in-place started to take effect. They say, “Because music will always be what’s happening. Especially when we need it most.” Friday and Saturday, August 21-22. 6-9 pm. Free but donations appreciated.
WALK IT OFF Meditating while walking can bring clarity and refreshment to your day. Enter Berkeley Walks, a local tour company that provides scenic walking routes in the East Bay. In this week’s rendition, founders Robert E. Johnson and Janet L. Byron will guide visitors remotely through Cragmont Literary Lanes. The route is aptly named for its survey of streets dedicated to writers and poets, including Mark Twain, Bret Harte, and Robert Louis Stevenson. “Walk” while sitting on your couch for 3.5 miles through gardens, stairs, and winding hillside streets. After the virtual tour, suit up and go for a walk yourself while wearing a mask and socially distancing (air quality permitting). Sunday, Aug. 23. 11 a.m.-12 p.m.
BOTANY SKETCH The summer weather is in full bloom: the foliage is lush and the fauna is hungry. If you want to draw it, join A Feminist’s Guide to Botany, an event put on by the London Drawing Group. During a visual lecture, you can make quick sketches based on what you see. Then you’ll learn some simple watercolor techniques and exercises to help you make your own botanical paintings at home. The class will focus on the tradition of women in botanical art and note the inspiring stories of female botanical explorers throughout the ages. This class is rife with beautiful images and good vibes. Thursday, Aug. 27, 10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. PDT.
BAMPFA FILMS Art can transcend anything. The BAMPFA (UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive) is releasing a plethora of socially conscious, artistically memorable films. For free, you can watch A Tribute to Malcolm X, a 15-minute video that was made for the 1969 television series Black Journal to commemorate the leader. You can also rent Ai Wei Wei: Yours Truly for $10 and witness the making of the activist/artist’s project on Alcatraz. Other titles include Madeline Anderson’s I Am Somebody, Bert Stern’s Jazz on a Summer’s Day, and Ramona S. Diaz’s A Thousand Cuts. Tune in and raise some consciousness. Rental prices vary, but start around $10. Visit BAMPFA Watch from Home for details.