By Gary Meyer We are lucky to live a world where rebels can become heroes, whether they are historical figures, entertainers, journalists, visionaries, artists, writers or leaders. Some rebels become elected officials who make us question our response to “rebels as heroes.”  But we can be selective.


By C.J. Hirschfield When he passed away in 2013, independent documentary filmmaker Les Blank left us with a rich cinema legacy, consisting mainly of works that lovingly introduce us to the traditional music, food and flavor of many American regional cultures. His films have welcomed us into a Mardi Gras parade, polka dancing parties in […]


By C.J. Hirschfield Molly Ivins was an American newspaper columnist, author, political commentator and humorist who lived out loud. Real loud. A new documentary, RAISE HELL: THE LIFE AND TIMES OF MOLLY IVINS, does a fine job of helping us understand the Texas environment in which the three-time Pulitzer Prize nominee lived and worked, which […]


by C.J. Hirschfield Coming of age in San Francisco in the seventies, I had definitely heard of Ram Dass, né Richard Alpert, an American spiritual teacher, former academic, and Harvard clinical psychologist. I knew that he hung with Timothy Leary, and that the use of psychedelics and time spent in India with his guru propelled […]

Oakland’s Ant-Man: Eddie Dunbar

by C.J. Hirschfield Eddie Dunbar, the founder and president of the Insect Sciences Museum of California, was once hired by Francis Ford Coppola to throw monarch butterflies at Robin Williams in a movie Coppola directed. So who better to ask whether the new film Ant-Man does justice to the little members of the Formicidae family?

Of Cupcakes and Dragons

by C. J. Hirschfield Because I run a storybook theme park that boasts nine resident dragons and hosts over 200 birthday parties a year, and because I have a degree in film and broadcasting, the fine folks at the online magazine EatDrinkFilms thought I’d be the perfect person to interview an animator whose baked dragons […]