San Francisco Events

CANCELLED: The Writers Grotto - 3 Minute Reads (San Francisco Ferry Building Store)

Friday, March 27, 2020 - 6:00pm

Please note: This event has been cancelled.

3 Minute Reads from the Writers Grotto!

Join us for a fast-paced and irreverent evening, showcasing new work from the students of the Writers Grotto writing classes. On this Friday evening, both fiction and nonfiction writers will read their work — but only for 3 minutes each! Their instructors (Grotto authors) will enforce the time limit. Join us for wine, fun, and fresh new writing.

1 Ferry Building
San Francisco, CA 94111

Bridget Watson Payne - How Time Is on Your Side (San Francisco Ferry Building Store/Shack 15)

Wednesday, February 26, 2020 - 6:30pm

Doors open at 6:30pm, event begins at 7:00pm • This event is being held in partnership with Shack 15. Please visit Book Passage's Ferry Building store to receive a free pass for the event and directions to Shack 15's location on the second floor of the Ferry Building.

In conversation with Lucie Charkin

Yes, there really is enough time to do it all: the passion projects, the to-do list, or simply making time to do nothing—the trick is knowing how to look for it.

Packed with helpful tips, How Time Is on Your Side is a simple handbook to help reframe your relationship with time. Through practical productivity tools and inspiring stories of people who make time for the things that matter to them, you will find that achieving your goals isn't as farfetched as it seems. Let the encouraging words of artist and author Bridget Watson Payne be your guide to reinvent your relationship with time: it's not the enemy; it's a friend.

With smart, unintimidating content, this little guide is sure to inspire anyone to make time to achieve their goals. Take a moment, a minute, or a day to reinvent your relationship with time, and discover how it can work for you. The time you need is there. Let How Time Is on Your Side help you find it.

Bridget Watson Payne is an artist, writer, and book editor based in San Francisco, and the author of How Art Can Make You Happy.

 
1 Ferry Building
San Francisco, CA 94111

POSTPONED: Dave Eggers with Ninive Calegari - Unnecessarily Beautiful Spaces for Young Minds on Fire (San Francisco Ferry Building Store/Shack 15)

Tuesday, March 10, 2020 - 6:30pm

Please note: This event has been postponed due to concerns for the health and well-being of our community. For updates on this event and for additional event information, please subscribe to our e-newsletter.

Doors open at 6:30pm, event begins at 7:00pm • This event is being held in partnership with Shack 15 • Please visit Book Passage's Ferry Building store to receive a free pass for the event and directions to Shack 15's location on the second floor of the Ferry Building.

The story: back in 2002, some friends in San Francisco had an idea for a youth writing and tutoring center. They rented a building for this purpose, only to learn that the address was zoned for retail; they could do their writing and tutoring, sure, but they had to sell something in the front of the building. So they decided to sell pirate supplies, and to decorate the storefront as if it were a real shop for working buccaneers. It was a ludicrous solution to a bizarre problem, and it ended up being the key to everything. —from the introduction by Dave Eggers

Every kid in the world needs a safe, welcoming—and especially weird—place to write. That's the theory behind 826 Valencia, a writing and tutoring center started in 2002 by writer Dave Eggers and friends in San Francisco. That center inspired similar centers around the world, from New York to Melbourne—all with their own bizarre themes designed to make learning fun and destigmatize tutoring centers for kids falling behind. In Boston, there's the Greater Boston Bigfoot Research Institute. In Minneapolis, there's the Midcontinent Oceanographic Institute. Los Angeles has a convenience store for time travelers.

Filled with stunning photos of each space, along with detailed spreads showing the range of creative "merchandise" the centers have for their theme, the book also includes interviews with center directors and staff on their space, how they've used it in programs, one-on-one connections with young learners, and community outreach, in hopes of creating a blueprint that others might follow. Dozens of centers are featured, from cities across the US and around the world.

A celebration of creating joyous and welcoming wild spaces for young minds, Unnecessarily Beautiful Spaces for Young Minds on Fire seeks to inspire more communities, schools and libraries, and civic and corporate organizations around the world to build their own centers for young writers.

Dave Eggers is the author of twelve books, including The Captain and the Glory; The Parade; The Monk of Mokha; The Circle; Heroes of the Frontier; A Hologram for the King, a finalist for the National Book Award; and What Is the What, a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award and winner of France's Prix Médicis Étranger and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize. His nonfiction and journalism have appeared in The Guardian, the New Yorker, The Best American Travel Writing, and the Best American Essays. He is the founder of McSweeney's, an independent publishing company, and cofounder of Voice of Witness, a book series that uses oral history to illuminate human rights crises around the world. He is the cofounder of 826 National, a network of youth writing and tutoring centers with locations around the country, and of ScholarMarch, which connects donors with students to make college accessible. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters. His work has been translated into forty-two languages. He lives in Northern California with his family.

Nínive Clements Calegari is an educator in the United States. Following ten years of classroom experience in public schools, she became an author and founded a national literacy program, 826 National. She also founded The Teacher Salary Project. Currently she is the CEO of Enterprise for Youth, an organization that empowers young people to prepare for and discover career opportunities in the San Francisco area through a three-phase program model of job-readiness training, paid internships with college credit, and ongoing career development and networking support.

1 Ferry Building
San Francisco, CA 94111

Rebecca West - Happy Starts at Home (San Francisco Ferry Building Store)

Tuesday, March 3, 2020 - 6:00pm

What does it take to be happy at home? It’s not about buying or not buying a new couch—it’s about whether your home is working for you in the best way. Your home can directly improve your well-being and contentment with better health, sleep, and relationships, and ultimately decrease your stress levels to increase your all-round happiness. Design expert Rebecca West helps you to learn how to achieve a geographical cure without actually relocating and how to redecorate so you can feel best in your space. Along with beautiful photographs, there are a variety of self-assessment activities to connect your financial, emotional, and physical health to your space to ensure it nurtures your vision—and while doing so, investing your time and money more effectively, too. With the valuable advice in Happy Starts at Home, you can commit to a philosophy of buying fewer things and doing more to discover what’s holding you back, in order to find joy and create a home that makes you smile.

Rebecca West is an award-winning design psychology coach and interior designer with 12 years of experience running her company, Seriously Happy Homes. An incurable optimist on a mission to help as many folks as possible get happy—at home and in life—she has worked with almost 2,000 clients and mentored dozens of aspiring designers and eager entrepreneurs. A speaker and business coach, Rebecca serves on the board of Heritage Design School. She has been featured in magazines like Live Happy and Success Magazine, and on various TV shows and podcasts. Find her on Instagram: @beseriouslyhappy.

1 Ferry Building
San Francisco, CA 94111

POSTPONED: David G. Marwell - Mengele: Unmasking the "Angel of Death" (San Francisco Ferry Building Store)

Friday, April 10, 2020 - 6:00pm

Please note: This event has been postponed due to concerns for the health and well-being of our community. For updates on this event and for additional event information, please subscribe to our e-newsletter.

Perhaps the most notorious war criminal of all time, Josef Mengele was the embodiment of bloodless efficiency and passionate devotion to a grotesque worldview. Aided by the role he has assumed in works of popular culture, Mengele has come to symbolize the Holocaust itself as well as the failure of justice that allowed countless Nazi murderers and their accomplices to escape justice. Whether as the demonic doctor who directed mass killings, or as the elusive fugitive who escaped capture, Mengele has loomed so large that even with conclusive proof, many refused to believe that he had died.

As chief of investigative research at the Justice Department’s Office of Special Investigations in the 1980s, David G. Marwell worked on the Mengele case, interviewing his victims, visiting the scenes of his crimes, and ultimately holding his bones in his hands. Drawing on his own experience as well as new scholarship and sources, Marwell examines in scrupulous detail Mengele’s life and career. He chronicles Mengele’s university studies, which led to two PhDs and a promising career as a scientist; his wartime service both in frontline combat and at Auschwitz, where his “selections” sent innumerable innocents to their deaths and his “scientific” pursuits—including his studies of twins and eye color—traumatized or killed countless more; and his postwar flight from Europe and refuge in South America.

Mengele describes the international search for the Nazi doctor in 1985 that ended in a cemetery in Sao Paulo, Brazil, and the dogged forensic investigation that produced overwhelming evidence that Mengele had died—but failed to convince those who, arguably, most wanted him dead. This is the riveting story of science without limits, escape without freedom, and resolution without justice.

David G. Marwell, former director of the Museum of Jewish Heritage in New York City, worked on the Mengele case at the Justice Department’s Office of Special Investigations in the 1980s. A historian who has served and led a number of government and nonprofit institutions, he lives in University Park, Maryland, with his wife.

1 Ferry Building
San Francisco, CA 94111

POSTPONED: Shanta Nimbark Sacharoff - Cooking Together: A Vegetarian Co-op Cookbook (San Francisco Ferry Building Store)

Saturday, March 21, 2020 - 1:30pm

Please note: This event has been postponed due to concerns for the health and well-being of our community. For updates on this event and for additional event information, please subscribe to our e-newsletter.

Meet & Greet Following CUESA Demo!

Cooking Together: A Vegetarian Co-op Cookbook is Shanta Nimbark Sacharoff’s third cookbook which focuses on the importance of cooking together with family and friends. In addition to many vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free recipes, the book offers some real-world solutions for the younger generation, working parents, and the elderly alike by pointing out ways in which to engage with community via shopping consciously, remaking the kitchen into a cooperative workplace, and/or joining existing community kitchens.

Shanta Nimbark Sacharoff grew up in India, went to college in New York, and moved to San Francisco in 1973, where she became active in The San Francisco Bay Area’s Peoples Food System, a grass roots, fair food distribution organization that created about a dozen store fronts and wholesale venues.  Shanta later became co-owner of Other Avenues, a food cooperative in San Francisco’s Sunset District where she worked for over 35 years. Shanta is the author of four books, Other Avenues Are Possible: Legacy of the Peoples Food System of the San Francisco Bay Area, The Ethnic Vegetarian Kitchen, Flavors of India, and Cooking Together.  Shanta currently lives in San Francisco where she teaches vegetarian cuisine and writes recipes and articles about nutrition and food politics. Shanta gives talks and workshops about cooking, nutrition and food sharing at various public locations.

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We are pleased to share our Saturday mornings at the Ferry Building with our friends at CUESA, as they host well-known chefs at their demonstration kitchen. The food-portion of the events usually start at the market about an hour or so earlier than the times listed above. We invite the chefs and their fans to take a short walk over to our store where they can meet their readers and sign their books.

1 Ferry Building
San Francisco, CA 94111

POSTPONED: Jennifer Ackerman - The Bird Way (San Francisco Ferry Building Store)

Wednesday, May 20, 2020 - 12:30pm

Please note: This event has been postponed due to concerns for the health and well-being of our community. For updates on this event and for additional event information, please subscribe to our e-newsletter.

"There is the mammal way and there is the bird way." This is one scientist's pithy distinction between mammal brains and bird brains: two ways to make a highly intelligent mind. But the bird way is much more than a unique pattern of brain wiring, and lately, scientists have taken a new look at bird behaviors they have, for years, dismissed as anomalies or mysteries. What they are finding is upending the traditional view of how birds conduct their lives, how they communicate, forage, court, breed, survive. They're also revealing the remarkable intelligence underlying these activities, abilities we once considered uniquely our own—deception, manipulation, cheating, kidnapping, infanticide, but also, ingenious communication between species, cooperation, collaboration, altruism, culture, and play.

Some of these extraordinary behaviors are biological conundrums that seem to push the edges of—well—birdness: A mother bird that kills her own infant sons, and another that selflessly tends to the young of other birds as if they were her own. Young birds that devote themselves to feeding their siblings and others so competitive they'll stab their nestmates to death. Birds that give gifts and birds that steal, birds that dance or drum, that paint their creations or paint themselves, birds that build walls of sound to keep out intruders and birds that summon playmates with a special call—and may hold the secret to our own penchant for playfulness and the evolution of laughter.

Drawing on personal observations, the latest science, and Ackerman's own bird-related travel around the world, from the tropical rainforests of eastern Australia and the remote woodlands of northern Japan, to the rolling hills of lower Austria and the islands of Alaska's Kachemak Bay, The Bird Way shows there is clearly no single bird way of being. In every respect, in plumage, form, song, flight, lifestyle, niche, and behavior, birds vary. It's what we love about them. As E.O Wilson once said, when you have seen one bird, you have not seen them all.

Jennifer Ackerman has been writing about science and nature for three decades. She is the author of eight books, including The Genius of Birds, which has been translated into twenty languages and the forthcoming The Bird Way:A New Look at How Birds Talk, Work, Play, Parent, and Think. Her articles and essays have appeared in Scientific American, National Geographic, The New York Times, and many other publications, Ackerman is the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts Literature Fellowship in Nonfiction, a Bunting Fellowship, and a grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

1 Ferry Building
San Francisco, CA 94111

POSTPONED: Jenara Nerenberg - Divergent Mind (San Francisco Ferry Building Store)

Tuesday, March 24, 2020 - 6:00pm

Please note: This event has been postponed due to concerns for the health and well-being of our community. For updates on this event and for additional event information, please subscribe to our e-newsletter.

As a successful Harvard and Berkeley-educated writer, entrepreneur, and devoted mother, Jenara Nerenberg was shocked to discover that her “symptoms”—only ever labeled as anxiety—were considered autistic and ADHD. Being a journalist, she dove into the research and uncovered neurodiversity—a framework that moves away from pathologizing “abnormal” versus “normal” brains and instead recognizes the vast diversity of our mental makeups.

When it comes to women, sensory processing differences are often overlooked, masked, or mistaken for something else entirely. Between a flawed system that focuses on diagnosing younger, male populations, and the fact that girls are conditioned from a young age to blend in and conform to gender expectations, women often don’t learn about their neurological differences until they are adults, if at all. As a result, potentially millions live with undiagnosed or misdiagnosed neurodivergences, and the misidentification leads to depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, and shame. Meanwhile, we all miss out on the gifts their neurodivergent minds have to offer.

Divergent Mind is a long-overdue, much-needed answer for women who have a deep sense that they are “different.” Sharing real stories from women with high sensitivity, ADHD, autism, misophonia, dyslexia, SPD and more, Nerenberg explores how these brain variances present differently in women and dispels widely-held misconceptions (for example, it’s not that autistic people lack sensitivity and empathy, they have an overwhelming excess of it).

Nerenberg also offers us a path forward, describing practical changes in how we communicate, how we design our surroundings, and how we can better support divergent minds. When we allow our wide variety of brain makeups to flourish, we create a better tomorrow for us all.

Jenara Nerenberg lectures widely on neuroscience, innovation, sensitivity, leadership, and diversity. Selected as a “brave new idea” presenter by the Aspen Institute for her work on re-framing mental differences, Jenara is also the founder and host of The Neurodiversity Project. She holds degrees from the Harvard School of Public Health and UC Berkeley. Her work has been published in Fast Company, New York magazine, Susan Cain’s Quiet Revolution, Garrison Institute, Elaine Aron’s HSP, Healthline, KQED, and elsewhere. In addition to her work as a journalist, Jenara is a frequent workshop facilitator, speaker, and event host for institutions including the Stanford Graduate School of Business and elsewhere in the San Francisco Bay Area.

1 Ferry Building
San Francisco, CA 94111

POSTPONED: Jessica Anthony with Amanda Uhle - Enter the Aardvark (San Francisco Ferry Building Store)

Sunday, March 29, 2020 - 3:00pm

Please note: This event has been postponed due to concerns for the health and well-being of our community. For updates on this event and for additional event information, please subscribe to our e-newsletter.

In conversation with Amanda Uhle

It's early one morning on a hot day in August, and millennial congressman Alexander Paine Wilson (R), planning his first reelection campaign and in deep denial about his sexuality, receives a mysterious, over-sized FedEx delivery on his front stoop. Inside is a gigantic taxidermied aardvark.

This outrageous, edge-of-your-seat novel hurtles between contemporary Washington, D.C., where Wilson tries to get rid of the unsightly beast before it destroys his career, and Victorian England—where we meet Titus Downing, the taxidermist who stuffed the aardvark, and Richard Ostlet, the naturalist who hunted her. Our present world, we begin to see, has been shaped in profound and disturbing ways by the secret that binds these men.

At once a ghost story, a love story, and a stunningly prescient political satire, Enter the Aardvark confronts the consequences of repressed male love meeting oppressive male power, and is a searing condemnation of our current American blindness. It is also that rarest of creatures: a work of art so utterly original and masterfully built that it seems to have spring fully formed from its visionary maker's head.

Jessica Anthony has been a butcher in Alaska, an unlicensed masseuse in Poland, and a secretary in San Francisco. In 2017, while writing Enter the Aardvark, Anthony was working as "Bridge Guard," guarding the Maria Valeria Bridge between Sturovo, Slovakia and Esztergom, Hungary. Normally, she lives in Maine and teaches at Bates College.

Amanda Uhle is Executive Director and Publisher of McSweeney’s, known for its award-winning quarterly literary journal, humor website and eclectic book publishing program. She is co-founder, with Dave Eggers, of The International Congress of Youth Voices. For more than 11 years, Uhle was executive director of 826michigan, a nonprofit tutoring and writing center for school-aged students in Detroit, Ann Arbor, and Ypsilanti. Trained as a journalist, she writes independently and is sometimes host of the author interview radio program and podcast, Living Writers. She remains involved with numerous youth writing organizations in Michigan and around the world, supporting their fundraising and programming as a volunteer consultant. She’s a board member of Choose Yourself, a youth-led organization working to raise fearless girls and young women in the nations of Africa and in the United States. 

1 Ferry Building
San Francisco, CA 94111

POSTPONED: Eunice & Sabrina Moyle - Go Get 'Em, Tiger! (San Francisco Ferry Building Store)

Wednesday, March 11, 2020 - 11:00am

Please note: This event has been postponed due to concerns for the health and well-being of our community. For updates on this event and for additional event information, please subscribe to our e-newsletter.

The award-winning Hello!Lucky team brings their bold style and surefire laughs to a picture book about an exuberant tiger tackling life’s challenges and coming out on top. Go Get 'Em, Tiger is perfect for celebrating any big milestone, from the first day of preschool to college graduation, and every goalpost in between.

Hello!Lucky is all about using creativity to spread joy, fun, and kindness. Founded by sisters Eunice and Sabrina Moyle in 2003, Hello!Lucky is an award-winning letterpress greeting card and design studio working with dozens of partners to create products, including Abrams’s pun-derful children’s books: My Mom Is Magical!, My Dad Is Amazing!, Super Pooper and Whizz Kid: Potty Power, Kindness Rules!, and Christmas Is Awesome!. They also offer bedding, ceramics, socks, stationery, custom photo albums, and more. Hello!Lucky is based in San Francisco.

1 Ferry Building
San Francisco, CA 94111

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