Barney’s Weekend Picks

OK, So You’re Weary. Beat from the holidays. No
energy or will power to do anything strenuous. maria_callas.jpg

So I won’t suggest a bracing plunge at East Beach or fast trek
up to El Camino Cielo. So what can you handle?

A play, maybe?

Theater:
Master Class
, the Tony Award-winning play by
Terrence McNally will be presented Friday,
Saturday and Sunday at the Lobero by Santa Barbara Theatre at 8
p.m. Legendary opera diva Maria Callas
coaches and harangues three students. Karen Kondazian teaches the
“class.”

Music: Somos Son is due to take its
Latin beat to SOhO Friday night. No, Itzhak
Perlman
isn’t coming to town this weekend, but here’s
a heads-up: The virtuoso fiddler will give what UCSB is terming “an
intimate recital” at Campbell Hall itzhak_perlman.jpgon Jan. 27 at 4 p.m. Earlier, at 11
a.m., he’ll take part in a free master class with UCSB students,
open to public observation at Campbell Hall. The Arts & Lectures
performance, sponsored by the Goleta Valley Voice, KCLU,
Fess Parker’s Doubletree Resort and Longoria Winery is (sorry) sold
out. And curses to me for being too late.

Paging Into the New Year: Prowling a used-book
store is akin to wandering around a seasoned home that’s been
appreciated and has stood the test of time. In a new-book shop, you
pretty much know what you’ll find, especially if you read the
Sunday book reviews. But a store with previously owned lore on the
shelves is a source of countless surprises: new finds and old,
forgotten friends.

Luckily, Santa Barbara has a bunch of used-book shops, all with
different personalities and treasures. To misquote Omar
Khayyam
, who was talking about wine: What is it that
booksellers buy half so precious as what they sell? When I worked
at the News-Press my favorite was Jerry Jacobs’
Lost Horizons, a nook in the 700 block of Anacapa
Street across from the Paradise Café. I’ve bought and sold there
over the years, sometimes selling, then regretting and buying back
in a year or so.

When I head up Santa Barbara Street toward the public library or
bank, I pass Karen Thrasher’s Thrasher Books, 827
Santa Barbara St., its windows full of candy-store-like
temptations. What, buy another book when I have so many others
waiting and half-forgotten, orphan-like on my bedside table? Too
often I do. I like Karen because she likes books. Loves.

Ted’s Used Books, in the 2000 block of De la
Vina Street, always jammed to the rafters, has moved across the
street and become more manageable to customers. It still has a
massive supply of reading matter for cold nights or summer
reading.

Then there’s Eric Kelley’s Book Den, 15 E.
Anapamu St. This is a class act and the oldest used-book shop in
town at 73 years old. Among other things, it caters to local
authors, including this one.

I’ll bet a gross of page markers that many a Santa Barbara
bookshelves_1.jpgreadaholic has never heard of
Again-Books, much less could find it if
challenged. It’s down by the beach and easy to miss. I used to have
a hard time finding it open. But now, I’m assured, it’s open
Wednesdays through Fridays 1-6 p.m. and Saturday and Sundays 11-6
p.m. It’s at 16-A Helena Ave., and crammed with lore. I’m way
overdue to visit, if the orphans on my bedside table allow me.

(Email Barney
Brantingham
or call him at 805-965-5205. He also writes at
Tuesday on-line column for the Independent and a print column on
Thursdays.
)

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