time reversal

the stories of four physicists separated by the whims of fate

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The Post-Apocalyptic Dance Party and other fun games

August 24th, 2008 by liz

I spent a bit too much time in lab this week, so when I got an e-mail from an EECS grad student about “The Post-Apocalyptic Dance Party” on Friday night, (even though I had no idea who this person was) I decided it was worth going for some high quality blowing-off-steam. After much failure at convincing any of the people still in lab on a Friday night to come with me (lame-asses!) I headed down to this party. The e-mail read like an invitation to an East Campus party:



Suppose civilization had violently collapsed, and the streets were full of the rotting corpses of children, pestilence and death ruling the earth eternally while the dwindling survivors spend their time either stealing and killing or subsistence farming and fighting off desperate bands of hungry raiders–what would you do? The correct answer is hold a party in honor of the New East Bay Free State. Come clad in your most post apocalyptic outerwear, and we will feed you booze and good music. Due to Radiohead and a confluence of other factors, this party will be on the low key side of Woolsey parties,
but still badass.


When the oil supplies starting dwindling and prices quadrupled in just a decade, nobody seemed to sense the coming fall. When the last airlines folded, governments secretly bought up their inventory in preparation for war, while the people themselves were unable to foresee the coming chaos. When the trucks stopped rolling and the fields went fallow, the unwary masses suddenly saw their end, and the cities erupted into a violent orgy of scavenegery, all desperate to snatch up what little was left to consume.

For those of you too young to remember, the founders of the New East Bay Free State found only a narrow band of habitability between the blighted, disease ridden wastes of Albany/El Cerrito, and the radioactive graveyard where Alameda and East Oakland had once stood. For a decade, those pioneers assembled what may be the only vestige of civilization for a thousand miles, pulling down houses and tilling the dormant soil beneath, killing those who dared emerge from the darkness to seize our crops and cropland.

It has now been a year since the last raiders dared impinge upon our lands. As our dark days now seemingly draw to a close, we few that remain gather in celebration of the dawn of a new era.

For the glory of the New East Bay Free State, join us for a night of food, dance, lights, drinks, trash barrel fires, pugilism, music and honor.


Ok, so in retrospect, I can see why so called “normal people” (read: some of my labmates) might have been scared off by said e-mail. However, the party was awesome! I couldn’t find the house at first, but then I noticed one house had an abundance of crazy colored lights, music, and what appeared to be a trash-barrel fire. It really was just like a party at EC. Wildly eccentric people dancing to music dressed in tattered “post-apocalyptic” costumes generally just having a great time and not caring at all what people thought of them. One of the house residents did theater lighting, so there were nifty special effects all around the house. Sweet.

In other news, my housemates took off to burning man on Friday. They built a giant inflatable pod with a disco dance floor in the middle:

pod with disco dance floor

The house was kind of crazy for about 3 weeks as they built this thing, but what a cool result! I kind of hope they bring it back so we can hold dance parties in the backyard.

Yesterday, I went rock climbing in a park somewhere in Berkeley (Cragmont park?). It was fun, and we even got to do a bit of easy trad climbing in two of the cracks. It’s sunny and beautiful here (again) so I’ll probably go climbing or biking again today.

This morning I went out to the garden to pick the ripe tomatoes, and after picking maybe 1/3 of them discovered that I had already picked more than I could possibly eat before they go bad. Maybe I’ll make some salsa or something. One thing I love about California is that everything grows so easily here. The farmer’s markets are awesome, and the garden produces more squash, basil, tomatoes and other deliciousness than I could ever want. The garden even has these tiny sweet yellow tomatoes that I eat like candy.

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