At the Walnut Creek Conference — our staff hard at work in California Bay Area for first half of August

Aug 2nd, 2014 | By | Category: In Brief

Walnut Creek in its smaller region.

By noon tomorrow (Sunday, August 3, 2014) our counterweights Toronto editorial staff (well, most of us anyway) will be on an Air Canada jet bound for San Francisco.

At the San Francisco International Airport (“SFO” as they say locally), we will board the BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) train to Walnut Creek — en route to our regular conference (and hard-working seminar series) with our illustrious California technical staff. They are still officially headquartered in Palo Alto (“intellectual capital of the Internet”, formerly at least?), but resident for the moment in the Mount Diablo region of the beautiful Contra Costa County, further north (and east).

Mt. Diablo over Walnut Creek, California. By: Bruce Ring.

With all this in mind, we were intrigued to discover, just a few days ago, that the Bay Area of California is “home to some of the snobbiest cities in the nation” (the nation of the USA of course). More exactly: “According to Movoto Blog, a site that covers real estate ‘for those who like to have fun,’ the Bay Area is not only home to the US’s snobbiest city (Palo Alto, apparently), but it also has a reoccurring presence on the site’s list of 50.”  And one of these reoccurrring presences is happily or otherwise taken up by the City of Walnut Creek — in the shadow of Mount Diablo, and close enough for jazz to the University of California at Berkeley.

Walnut Creek in its bigger region.

According to the Los Angeles Times, only a few days ago as well : “‘California has winners and losers in this recovery,’ said Stephen Levy, director of the Center for Continuing Study of the California Economy in Palo Alto. ‘It depends on whether you’re in the tech economy in the Bay Area or the hotter economies in Southern California, or whether you were wiped out by the housing recession and the resulting fiscal dilemmas’.” (As were, eg, many living in several “cities in the Inland Empire and Central Valley —  including Stockton, Modesto and Riverside,” and even in such places as “Los Angeles, Oakland, San Diego and Sacramento.”)

* * * *

Bank of America Clock Tower in downtown Walnut Creek.

For better or worse, Walnut Creek would seem to qualify as at least an honourary member of “the tech economy in the Bay Area.”  Its recent median household income and  median house or condo value are comfortably above the California average.

Its economic development department goes on to explain that : “Walnut Creek, and its picturesque backdrop of Mt. Diablo, is located in Contra Costa County in the East Bay, approximately 25 miles east of San Francisco.  We are within proximity of …  the University of California (UC) campuses at Berkeley (15 miles), San Francisco (24 miles) and Davis (56 miles). We are conveniently located … 36 miles from the San Francisco International Airport …Walnut Creek is served by Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART), a high-speed rail system serving the greater San Francisco Bay Area …  Walnut Creek is also located within close proximity to the Napa and Sonoma Valleys, areas internationally recognized for … some of the world’s finest wines.”

“Without a doubt, the most striking landmark in Walnut Creek is our View of Mt. Diablo .”

Meanwhile, back in the old east end of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, down by the lake, our counterweights editorial office will be closed from now until the middle of August. When we return, someone among us will post a short report on the main big political (and economic) question under investigation at this summer’s Walnut Creek Conference — “Where in the world is the USA going, and what does it mean for Canada, if anything, etc, etc ??

Until then, those still yearning for more might want to ponder clicking on one of the half dozen most visited counterweights postings over the past week (according to Google Analytics.) Note that only one of these half dozen most visited postings over the past week is from this year. It is one of the site’s strengths, we strongly believe, that it enjoys a still frequently visited archive. And in any case, the six postings here (just below) are listed in chronological order (though the general theme would logically enough seem to be, one way or another, all about “the summer”) :

Old El Rey theatre in downtown Walnot Creek, in business from 1937 to 1981.

(1)Marc Emery’s chant of the weed: Stephen Harper just visiting Canada too,”  Sep 29th, 2009,  by Counterweights Editors. [This was our protest against the Canadian “Prince of Pot” Marc Emery’s extradition to the United States for violations of foolish US drug laws, when it happened. We’re pleased it’s finding fresh readers five years later, just as Mr. Emery is about to come home at last. See, eg : “Marijuana advocate Marc Emery vows ‘political revenge’ against Tories ; “Marc Emery still unsure when he’ll be released” ; and “Canadians want softer marijuana laws, survey says ….”]

(2)Goodbye, Lieutenant — Columbo and me (1927–2011, 1968–2003),” Jun 26th, 2011, by Randall White.

(3)Splendor at the Hollywood theatre : remembering the Natalie Wood who would be 73 years old,” Nov 29th, 2011, by L. Frank Bunting.

The Stadium Pub — “Walnut Creek's original sports bar! Voted the #1 sports pub of Contra Costa County.”

(4)Did I bump into Mitt Romney and/or his dog in Grand Bend, Ontario?,” Dec 12th, 2011, by Citizen X.

(5)Mulcair melodies on oil sands fever .. and other new Canadian body parts that blossomed while we were away,” May 30th, 2012, by Randall White.

(6) Does the centenary of the First World War bring prophesies of World War III?,” Jul 24th, 2014, by Randall White.

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