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north bay teacher alleges sexual harassment by students – the mercury news

with a nod to the national “#metoo movement,” tamalpais high school teacher eva rieder has gone public with allegations that male students have sexually harassed her more than a dozen times with physical touching and obscene emails, letters and phone calls — and that school administrators and staff failed to respond to her reports or take any action to stop it.“it’s time my story is told,” rieder, a math teacher at the mill valley high school for 15 years, said during the public comment portion of the feb. 6 tamalpais union high school district board of trustees’ meeting at redwood high school in larkspur. “it’s time i say #metoo.”the latter was a reference to the recent national wave of incidents in which sexual harassment victims in a variety of arenas — from government, to business, law enforcement, athletics, fashion, entertainment, the military and literature, among others — are ending their silence and isolation by speaking out about their experiences and calling out their alleged predators and harassers.click here if you are having a problem viewing the video on a mobile devicerieder, who said she had been nervous about speaking up before now due to fears of retaliation, said the similar testimony at the previous board meeting jan. 23 by redwood high school math teacher jessica crabtree convinced her it was time to come forward.“i want to see a change,” she said monday. “i want to see our kids taken care of — i want to see our kids prote...





will a mother bird reject a baby that is touched by humans?

true or false? if a human touches a baby bird or other wild animal, the mother will reject the baby and doom it to death.falsemost of us grew up being told that we shouldn’t touch baby birds, or other wildlife, because the mother would detect our scent and reject the baby. i suspect this was our parents’ way of keeping young, exploring hands out of places they shouldn’t be, but it was accepted as gospel. unfortunately, it’s a myth that might prevent some folks from helping out wildlife.with the notable exception of turkey vultures and a few others, birds have a really bad sense of smell. they have excellent eyesight and memories, however, which make up for olfactory deficits.they probably aren’t happy with us touching their offspring, but they wouldn’t reject their baby because of our inability to keep our hands to ourselves.pet news, photos and more delivered to your inbox. sign up now for the pet pal connection newsletter!while it’s a good idea to keep our distance from bird nests, observing from afar, there is a time to get handsy, and that’s when a baby bird — or baby squirrel or other young creature — has fallen from the nest.if possible, you should try to put the baby back into the nest, or at the very least, keep an eye out, from a distance, to make sure the parents are aware their baby has fallen and to keep predators away.if a parent doesn’t return in a reasonable amount of time, don’t try to be a hero by raising the baby yourself. well-intent...





asa in los altos proves a fine second act

(click here, if you are unable to view this photo gallery on your mobile device.)success, as the aphorism goes, breeds success.for some, it spreads like wildfire from one venture to the next. for others, like restaurateur andrew welch, success is a slow burn, realized over years of dedication and hard work. it’s been 18 years since he took over the basin, a perennially popular spot in saratoga, a major feat in the notoriously fickle restaurant business. now he’s built on that accomplishment with asa, a restaurant named for his young son that opened six months ago in los altos.like the basin, asa’s menu is american with spanish and italian influences, and there are several similar dishes including the paella appetizer, pastas and rainbow trout. but overall, the menu at asa, overseen by head chef steven vu, skews more upscale with dishes such as maine lobster on brioche ($18) or a truly indulgent snack, caviar with buckwheat pancakes ($70).the dining room is sophisticated and modern, awash in black and gray with polished concrete floors and a high ceiling. wood tabletops and a lighted marble bar add warmth, while giant white dahlia pendant lights bathe the room in their soft, luminescent glow. it’s a truly beautiful space, one that suits a special night out.welch personally greets diners when they arrive. he ushered us to our table with a brief pleasantry that felt genuine and welcoming. we had an early reservation on a saturday evening as all the prime dining slots boo...





tudor-style blackhawk estate is built for entertaining and garden strolls – the mercury news

this custom tudor-style blackhawk home with attractive stone and brick facade showcases an attractive open-concept floor plan and masterfully designed gardens and outdoor space.this .4-acre lot comes with redwood trees at the corners and backs up to open space with an oak tree and italian cypresses. the two-level home at 5078 blackhawk drive features more than 3,860 square feet of living space with five bedrooms and three-and-a-half bathrooms including a main-level guest bedroom with en suite. the main level is devoted to incredible light-filled entertaining space that flows from one beautifully appointed room to another.the sound of a flowing tiered fountain in the front courtyard is an inviting welcome at the double-leaded glass door entry that opens onto a spacious foyer with hardwood floors. to the left is the formal dining room featuring an elegant boxed-beam ceiling, chair rail molding, corner fireplace and large picture window with a view of the front gardens.the home’s updated kitchen is an open plan with casual dining space, granite counters and a breakfast bar. an updated kitchen with generous casual dining space is an open room and well appointed with granite counters and breakfast bar, lots of cabinetry, two bosch dishwashers, thermador cooktop, dual ge ovens, built-in workstation, and garden window. the kitchen looks into the expansive family room that features a cathedral wood-beam ceiling with skylights, a fireplace surrounded by cobblestone and brick, and...





a rare chance to hear dorothea röschmann in berkeley

german soprano dorothea röschmann makes a rare bay area appearance this weekend in what promises to be a recital-lover’s dream.presented by cal performances, the program includes mahler’s “rückert” lieder, schubert’s four mignon songs and “nachtstück,” schumann’s “maria stuart” and wagner’s “wesendonck” lieder. accompanying röschmann is the ever-alert pianist malcolm martineau, whose work in vocal recitals always approaches the ideal.details: 8 p.m. feb. 16; hertz hall, uc berkeley; $63-$68; 510-642-9988, www.calperformances.org.





worker shortage after fires blamed on obama — really? – the mercury news

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californians trust tech industry but not social media: survey

californians trust the tech industry more than any other — yet they think it needs to be regulated, and they blame social media for fake news, a new survey says.the annual trust barometer by marketing consultancy firm edelman shows that golden state residents consider social media companies to be in a different category from apple, google, microsoft and samsung: 62 percent of californians trust the tech industry, while only 37 percent trust social media companies.in the bay area, home to facebook and twitter, only 35 percent of residents trust social media companies. it is the least trusted industry by residents of this region, according to edelman’s survey, which was released tuesday.bay area residents’ mixed feelings about tech are reflected in other numbers in the barometer: 62 percent of bay area residents say “the tech industry makes the wealthy even wealthier, but doesn’t really help the rest of california,” according to the survey.in addition, 67 percent of bay area residents think tech needs more regulation. bay area residents think: tech companies should be more financially liable for data breaches (89 percent); companies that move manufacturing overseas should be taxed (82 percent); companies that replace workers with machines should be taxed (66 percent); companies should reduce the number of skilled workers from abroad (66 percent); and that tech monopolies should be prevented (56 percent).“in the battle to protect its license to innovate around the ...





mattel follows uno's surge with a new game called dos

by joseph pisaninew york (ap) — what’s next for uno? dos, of course.mattel is launching the new card game dos next month in hopes of giving its nearly 50-year-old uno brand a second life. dos has similar rules as uno, except players make two piles of cards and can throw down two cards at a time instead of one.it comes as mattel tries to turn its business around, mainly by updating classic brands, such as barbie dolls and hot wheels cars. the toy maker’s revenue fell 11 percent last year, hurt by the bankruptcy filing of toys r us and the changing tastes of kids, who are increasingly reaching for a tablet instead of a toy.uno, however, was a bright spot: the company says uno sales were up 12 percent in 2017 from the year before. mattel, which is based in el segundo, california, has sought to sell uno in more places, including dollar stores and video game shops. and it has also been chasing trends, releasing uno cards with emojis, baby animals or unicorns. an uno smartphone app is in the works for the spring, and mattel already has launched a way to play the card game through facebook messenger.it may follow a similar a strategy with dos, says ray adler, who oversees mattel inc.’s games unit.dos, which costs $5.99, will first be sold at target in march and then roll out to other stores in august.it took two years to develop dos, mainly to make sure playing the game was different enough from uno. but don’t expect to see tres anytime soon, says adler.“we’re happy wh...





finding the right diet for a pet with kidney disease

q. i would like advice about caring for a dog with kidney disease. i need help with alternatives to prescription food.— anne, san josea. the kidneys function primarily as a filter for the body. the vast majority of kidney problems in pets are related to chronic renal failure, referred to as crf.while crf occurs in dogs, it is much more frequently encountered in cats. the first sign of crf in pets is usually an increase in water consumption or urinary output. as the kidneys fail, they lose their ability to conserve body water by concentrating the urine, so they produce large volumes of dilute urine instead. to compensate for the fluid loss, these pets will drink more water.in addition to excessive water drinking and urination, pets with chronic kidney disease often experience weight loss, decreased appetite and dehydration. as the condition progresses and dehydration becomes more severe, pets will often stop drinking water because they feel sick, worsening their condition.there are many western and holistic methods to treat pets with kidney disease. when these treatments are used appropriately, they can add years to a pet’s life. the single most important means to keep pets with kidney disease healthy is with optimal nutrition.many veterinarians use “prescription” diets although i much prefer feeding a fresh, whole food diet designed for pets with kidney issues. the basic philosophy of a kidney diet is highly digestible food with limited levels of protein, phosphorus a...





judge persky should not be recalled for 3 reasons – the mercury news

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feb. 13, 2018 – the mercury news

today’s word — stigmatic (stigmatic: stig-mat-ik: having a mark of infamy or disgrace.)average mark 15 wordstime limit 30 minutescan you find 23 or more words in stigmatic? the list will be published tomorrow.yesterday’s word — calcine cancel cane celiac clan clean acne alien anile lace laic lain lance lane lean lice lien line nail nice elanto purchase the word game book, visit wordgamebooks.com. order it now for just $5 while supplies last!rules of the game:1. words must be of four or more letters.2. words that acquire four letters by the addition of ”s,” such as ”bats” or ”dies,” are not allowed.3. additional words made by adding a ”d” or an ”s” may not be used. for example, if ”bake” is used, ”baked” or ”bakes” are not allowed, but ”bake” and ”baking” are admissible.4. proper nouns, slang words, or vulgar or sexually explicit words are not allowed.contact word game creator kathleen saxe at [email protected]





'the bachelor winter games' begin

tv picks for tuesday, feb. 13watch this:2018 winter olympics: tonight’s schedule includes the gold-medal final in the men’s snowboarding half pipe, where american shaun white is attempting to regain past glory. also: figure-skating pairs and alpine skiing.“the bachelor winter games” (8 p.m., abc): while the olympians chase gold medals in south korea, the contestants here have their eyes on red roses. in this new offshoot of the dating franchise, 26 eligible singles from around the world gather at a luxurious ski resort in vermont to participate in challenges and, of course, dabble in romance. in the premiere, the participants meet in the streets of vermont for a grand celebration. bachelor royalty trista and ryan sutter serve as grand marshals kicking off the festivities. espn “sportscenter” anchor and sports journalist hannah storm, and kabc-tv sports anchor and correspondent ashley brewer join host chris harrison for the action. following a featured performance by country music singer ruthie collins, the singles move into their villa and the games of love begin.“we’ll meet again” (8 p.m., pbs): during the sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on new york and washington, dc, strangers were thrown together in unimaginable situations. patrick, a businessman visiting new york, searches for emily, the photographer’s assistant who comforted him after the collapse of the world trade center. tim, a military chaplain plunged into chaos at the pentagon, hopes to than...





feb. 13, 2018 – the mercury news

tribune content agencysurveys found that the most popular name for boats is “obsession.” that also applies to some players’ view of drawing trumps.at today’s four spades, south took the ace of hearts and tried to draw trumps with the a-k. when west discarded, south led the a-k and a third diamond. east took his jack and returned a heart.south won but had no dummy entry to pitch his last heart on the high ten of diamonds. when he led a club to the king, east won, took his high trump and led a heart to west’s jack.trump tricksouth must have been obsessive about drawing trumps. he can afford a trump loser but not a heart. south should take the ace of trumps at trick two, then start the diamonds. east wins the third diamond and returns a heart, and south wins, goes to the king of trumps and throws his last heart on the high diamond.if east won the third diamond and led a fourth, south would discard a heart. if west ruffed, south could later draw trumps, losing only three tricks in all.daily questionyou hold: s a j 9 4 3 h a q 4 d a k 2 c q 5. the dealer, at your right, opens one club. you double, and your partner responds one heart. the opponents pass. what do you say?answer: take care. your partner may have no points (after all, your opponent opened and you have 20), and your queen of clubs may be worthless. bid one spade, showing 17 or more points. if partner has anything, he will bid again. if he is broke, maybe you can make one spade.south dealerboth sides vulnerabl...





feb. 13, 2018 – the mercury news

celebrities born on this day: mena suvari, 39; kelly hu, 50; peter gabriel, 68; stockard channing, 74.happy birthday: personal change will give you the boost you need this year. stop procrastinating and get busy. you don’t have to accomplish everything you want to achieve in just one day. set your plans in motion and try to enjoy the process of striving after your goal. make this year one to remember. physical change will boost your confidence. your numbers are 3, 10, 21, 25, 32, 37, 44. aries (march 21-april 19): emotional matters will escalate quickly, requiring you to think fast to counter any problems. remain calm and refuse to let anyone pressure you into something you feel isn’t in your best interest. focus on positive accomplishments. 2 stars taurus (april 20-may 20): make a concerted effort to do things for the benefit of everyone, including you. the more versatile your actions are, the easier it will be to convince others to help you reach your goal. offer peace, not pressure. 5 stars gemini (may 21-june 20): a business trip or meeting will bring about new ideas and positive changes. don’t sit back when you can be instrumental in the way things move forward. your input will prove that you are ready to take on more responsibilities. 5 stars cancer (june 21-july 22): take a closer look at your personal finances. emotional spending should be monitored carefully. question every purchase and the motives you have for spending money. use your skills and talents to com...





relief on lawrence expressway is a long ways off

q: due to increased traffic on lawrence expressway southbound after 5 p.m., it takes close to 25 minutes to go from highway 101 and lawrence to poinciana. can they tweak the signals on oakmead parkway, east arques, kifer road and monroe street to improve the flow of traffic on lawrence expressway?shantanu joshilike mr. roadshow’s facebook page for more questions and answers about bay area roads, freeways and commuting. a: alas, no. county engineers say this is the most congested stretch on any expressway and unfortunately the signal timing cannot do anything when the expressway is saturated. there are plans to build underpasses at arques avenue, kifer road and monroe street that would greatly help. this is the highest priority for all county expressways. however, that project is still years away, and the estimated $434 million cost could soar.the county may also look at reversible lanes, but design work has been delayed because of the lawsuit filed against the measure b sales tax that is currently tied up in the courts.my only suggestion is to avoid the 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. commute times. outside of those hours, traffic begins to ease — on some days.q: the el camino real-highway 92 interchange is a mess with two additional turning lanes and no end in sight. they used to have regular cloverleaf ramps. what is the reason behind the renovation?walter kaplansan mateoa: this is the look on almost all new interchanges — think highway 101-willow road in menlo park. they have be...





steve kerr letting the warriors coach themselves was a stroke of genius

oakland — steve kerr found a way to make a game against the phoenix suns in february interesting.if that’s not coaching genius, i don’t know what is.the warriors are days away from the much-needed and much-anticipated all-star break, and that gave monday’s game against a shorthanded suns team a good chance of being the nadir of a season where the warriors’ dazzling talent has too often given away to disinterest and on-court lethargy.but kerr was able to coax a strong, engaged effort out of his team in their final home game before the break, as the warriors beat phoenix by 46 points.and all kerr had to do to get his team to play their best basketball was to get of the way.(nhat v. meyer/bay area news group) kerr handed over control of his team to… well, his team, on monday and it paid almost immediate dividends. instead of his stars — fried from three-and-a-half years of being the nba’s best team — going through the motions against an inferior team, they were the ones drawing up the motions on the grease board during timeouts. (to varying degrees of success.)it was a pitch-perfect move executed at the right time and, to me, it stands out as the best coaching performance of the season for kerr and one of his finest performances of his career. yes, even though he wasn’t really the coach on monday.we’d like to think that coaches prove their worth in the big moments or over long spans of time, but the truth is that they’re also defined by how they handle a...





has disneyland finally passed the limit for ticket price increases?

start your day with the news you need from the bay area and beyond. sign up for our new morning report weekday newsletter.a lot people both in and outside of disney are justifying disneyland’s latest annual price increase by talking about the expense of building the park’s upcoming star wars land. magic isn’t cheap, they say.and they are right. disney never publicly confirms what it spends building its theme park attractions, but top-quality new rides can cost in the hundreds of millions of dollars. the star wars: galaxy’s edge project, which includes new lands at disneyland and disney’s hollywood studios in florida’s walt disney world, widely has been reported to cost disney at least $1 billion. that’s a galaxy’s worth of mickey bars.but most companies don’t get to simply balance their books by passing higher costs along to customers. sure, they can try, but if customers won’t pay the higher prices, the company is stuck.now, many disney fans are hoping that this latest price increase will become the one that finally does push a significant number of disneyland visitors to say “no” and stop coming to the parks. the trouble is we all are hoping that it’s someone else who bails, so we can enjoy lighter crowds while we keep visiting.the result? probably the same as the last umpteen annual price increases at disney – the crowds will keep getting bigger, and disney will keep making more money.this chart shows the increase in the maximum cost of daily ad...





california's drought restrictions on wasteful water habits could be coming back -- this time they'll be permanent

start your day with the news you need from the bay area and beyond. sign up for our new morning report weekday newsletter.anyone caught wasting water in california may be fined as much as $500 under new rules being considered by the state water board, officials said monday.the state water resources control board is expected to adopt regulation coming before the board on feb. 20 that would make it a crime to commit any of seven wasteful water practices — from lawn over watering to street median irrigation. those rules would take effect april 1.“these are permanent prohibitions on wasteful water uses,” said max gomberg, a climate and conservation manager for the state board. the ruling would formally make the rules part of the state code.this means the powerful agency would no longer need a “drought emergency” declaration from the governor to act, like the ones issued by gov. jerry brown during the state drought between 2012 and 2017.acting on brown’s orders, the board in july 2014 adopted mandatory monthly conservation requirements for every city and urban retail water agency in the state. the rules took effect in may 2015those that routinely missed the mark were sent warnings or were fined. a ban on wasteful water practices also was included. the result of the orders was an almost 25 percent drop in water use statewide.but plentiful rain and snow fell mostly in northern california in the winter of 2016-2017, filling reservoirs to overflowing and piling up the sn...





california woman says she saw sasquatches in lake arrowhead, sues state to get species recognized

start your day with the news you need from the bay area and beyond. sign up for our new morning report weekday newsletter.could bigfoot be in big bear?crestline resident claudia ackley isn’t sure, but she is certain she and her daughters encountered three of the hirsute bipeds while hiking on a trail in lake arrowhead last march.it was dusk, between 6:30 and 7 p.m., on march 27, to be exact. ackley and her 11- and 14-year-old daughters were hiking the winding trail when ackley’s daughters, several yards ahead, froze in their tracks, gazing wide-eyed at a large, shadowy figure braced in a pine tree. ackley ran to her daughters to see what they were staring at.“i ran into a sasquatch – a bigfoot. we were face to face,” said ackley, 46. “he was 30 feet up in the tree.” she said the creature was barrel-chested, with a head three times the size of a human’s, and appeared to weigh about 800 pounds.“he looked like a neanderthal man with hair all over him. he had solid black eyes. he had no expression on his face at all. he did not show his teeth. he just stared at the three of us,” said ackley. she said she made a howling “whoop” sound, and the creature in the tree reacted by rocking back and forth, shaking branches. that’s when ackley told her daughters to turn and slowly walk away. she said her youngest daughter, who shot video of the alleged encounter on her phone, later told her mother she saw two other similar creatures on the ground, running away upon...





steve kerr found it "very constructive" warriors met with officials before suns game

want warriors news in your inbox? sign up for the free dubsdaily newsletter.oakland — the warriors interacted with the officials. this time, both parties were not screaming at each other.in a meeting that warriors coach steve kerr called “very constructive,” the warriors and suns met with former nba official monty mccutchen and the game’s officials prior to thursday’s game at oracle arena. the topic: how to diffuse the tension that has resulted in a string of technical and ejections around the nba.to subscribe to the planet dubs podcast, click here.“bringing officials out and humanizing the refs and putting us face to face with the officials in a non competitive environment, we usually only see these guys on game night when everything is heated,” kerr said. “so it’s good to see them in a more informal environment. i thought it was very productive.”as a way to improve relations between players and officials, the nba launched a five-pronged initiative that include nba senior vice president, head of referee operations michelle johnson and mccutchen meeting with teams before the nba all-star break. mccutchen was named nba vice president, head of referee development and training in december.the warriors have had plenty of issues with the officials in the 2017-18 season with a league-leading nine ejections and 41 technicals. while warriors forward draymond green leads the nba with 14 technicals, warriors forward kevin durant is tied for second with 11 technical...