7AM Christmas morning: The 5 blocks of Telegraph Avenue

2.) DURANT AVENUE: The lot on the right used to have one of those “landmark status” buildings on it. But Ken Sarachan — who owns half of Telegraph — bought the lot and, in spite of resistance from City Hall, tore the building down anyways to build his clothing store. Every now and then the politicians at Berkeley City Hall would try to reign in Ken. But he defied them at every turn and always out-foxed them. He was simply too smart and too cunning for the well-meaning sloths at City Hall to be able to stop. . . In all these years, I’ve only been inside the apartment building on the left once. It was around Christmas of 1993, and we had unexpectedly made a ton of dough off of our “Naked Guy” calendar. So me and Duncan decided to pay everyone who was featured in the big photos a hundred bucks each. Actually, we kind of got guilt-tripped into doling out all that dough. And to this day I’m still not sure if it was the right move. I mean, on the years when we LOST a lot of money on the calendar, nobody gave us any money to pay the printer. We were the ones taking all the risks, after all. . . But anyways, Marty and Debbie of the X-plicit players — who were one of the stars of the calendar that year — lived in that apartment building at the time. So I went up to their apartment with these Christmas cards I had made with $100 bills in it to give to them. And another card for them to give to the Naked Guy who they were friends with. Actually the whole experience was pretty cool. That was the one Christmas where I kind of felt like Santa Claus doling out the goodies.

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