Features & Columns

Behind the Scenes at the Valley's School for Chefs

Campbell, the former prune capital, is now where future celebrity chefs go to learn the fine points
of French cuisine. We crashed the party to see what's up. Read More


How a University Launched the Electronic Music Revolution

It wasn't that long ago when all music was made by acoustic instruments-vibrating strings, oscillating reeds and resonating wood. Our musical devices were powered by wind, friction and other forces. But today, whether you're scanning the radio or browsing a web-based streaming service, chances are high that at least a portion of the music you're encountering was produced through some form of synthesis. The wobbling bass of that dubstep drop, the bowel-rattling kick and the snapping snare on that hip-hop beat, the impossibly rapid, arpeggiated guitar lick-all of them produced by a synthesizer. » Read More

Metro's Best of Silicon Valley 2015

It's time to admit that Silicon Valley is a bit of a freak. A paradoxical place where self-driving cars, drones and presidential visits are so common they barely merit a second thought. Yet we steal elections with licked stamps and feed ballots into counting machines by hand. From $100 million mansions to a now-disassembled plywood and canvas favela that was ready for its own Zip code, the valley incubates diversity and embraces unconventional thinking. Our normal is never the norm. » Read More

The San Jose Earthquakes: A Seismic Soccer Legacy

You see, for years I'd always wanted to write a book about the history of the San Jose Earthquakes club, including all its births, deaths and reincarnations, right up until the current day. Unfortunately, in November of 2013, the larger story wasn't yet complete. The timing wasn't right. However, Child's words about his Hall of Fame induction stuck with me. Never quit. Don't give up. » Read More

Mobile Manicures Arrive in Silicon Valley

Tom Abruzzo prefers to have his toenails painted purple-his favorite color. Vivian Xue experiments with different designs and hues. Together, the pair would frequent a salon in Sunnyvale to get pedicures and bond over spread-toe conversation. But then something happened-the customer went from being right to a little too right. » Read More

Can Comic Books Be Saved?

I wish to make a complaint. There are exceptions, and I'll try to name them, but most mainstream media coverage of comics sucks the air out of the room. And this in a time when the lively medium needs all the help it can get. One of the bigger comic-book-related stories of 2014 was a copy of Action Comics #1 selling for $2.3 million on Ebay. » Read More


The Plentiful Peach Mashes Ideology and Art in Imaginative Performance

Just like I'd expect from Palo Alto, the historical capital of Silicon Valley, an inspiring half-eastern and half-western collaboration will erupt this weekend. Spacetime-continuum-channeled via Azerbaijan, Iran, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Palo Alto High and the beige corridors of SJSU's School of Music, The Plentiful Peach premieres Sunday at Stanford's Bing Concert Hall thanks to two unique talents: Niloufar Talebi on words and Mark Grey on music. » Read More

Slugs, Dingbats, & Tramp Printers!

Beginning April 18, those who parade up the steps to the Leonard & David McKay Gallery at the Pasetta House in History Park will witness an exhibit specific and totally unique to San Jose. And what a title: Slugs, Dingbats, & Tramp Printers! Printing in Santa Clara Valley. The Pasetta House is not huge-the gallery is only a handful of rooms-but visitors will take away a worldly bouillabaisse of printing technology and how it all contributed to the evolution of this valley. » Read More

Little Italy Creates a New Identity with Unveiling of Gateway Arch

Last week, San Jose's Little Italy project officially dedicated a monumental 31-foot gateway arch at the intersection of N. Almaden and Julian, right in front of Paesano Ristorante Italiano, at the other end of the block from Henry's Hi-Life. Constructed of marble, steel and other elements, the arch took years to complete. After arduous degrees of city meetings, permits and fundraising endeavors, the arch now signifies the entryway to Little Italy-at the moment, a small few blocks of stuff, but a place where ideas loom quite large. » Read More