When construction workers break into the earth’s surface, it’s not unusual for them to discover ancient worlds. Last year, crews unearthed the remains of three mammoths and one giant bison in San Francisco. While working at the Caldecott Tunnel, fossil hunters discovered the remains of camels that once roamed the East Bay. There are actually provisions in California’s environmental laws that require anyone doing major digging projects to call fossil experts first, just in case. So when work began near Fremont to rebuild the Calaveras Dam, paleontologist Jim Walker was called to the scene to hunt for fossils. He expected to find a few, but the count surpassed 600.
Medical marijuana is legal in California. Medical marijuana is not legal in California. Both statements are sort of true; while pot shops are allowed statewide, cities still have the right to ban them. In fact, 200 cities already do. That’s left patients on their own to navigate through California’s conflicting and chaotic marijuana laws.
All week long, we've been playingthis sound, and asking you to guess what exactly it is and where exactly in the Bay Area we recorded it.
This auditory guessing game is part of Audiograph, a crowd-sourced collaborative radio project mapping the sonic signature of each of the Bay Area’s nine counties. By using the sounds of voices, nature, industry, and music, Audiograph tells the story of where you live, and the people who live there with you. Every Thursday, we reveal the origins of that week's sound on Crosscurrents, and here in weekly blog posts.
Note: This article contains language some readers may find offensive.
Usually, people who emerge from the 16th Street BART Station in San Francisco are greeted by men and women slumped over shopping carts, by panhandlers, and by the cacophony of traffic. But late on Thursday nights, BART passengers stride into the sounds of poetry. For over a decade, poets, musicians, and comedians have been meeting outside the station.