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Gifts for graduating Gators

May 21, 2007

What better gift for a graduating Gator than something that fellow alumni or faculty have helped produce? Books, DVDs and concert tickets with a Gator connection are simple but memorable tokens to remember the University. As an update to previous graduation and holiday gift lists, here are some new listings:

Gator lit
Image of the front cover of "The Doors by The Doors" by alum Ben Fong-Torres"Heavier Than Air" (University of Massachusetts Press, '06), a short story collection by Assistant Professor of Creative Writing Nona Caspers (M.F.A., '95), makes a great gift for the fiction fan. The book received the Associate Writing Programs' Grace Paley Prize in Short Fiction.

Deep thinkers will appreciate "Why Can't We Be Good?" (Tarcher, '07) by Philosophy Professor Jacob Needleman. The book explores a big question: Why do we repeatedly violate our most deeply held values and beliefs?

Want to light your Gator's fire? "The Doors" by The Doors and Ben Fong-Torres (B.A., '66), a former senior editor and writer at Rolling Stone magazine, offers an all-access pass to the band's history (Hyperion, '07).

Anyone whose pooch is a top priority will delight in a subscription to Bark magazine edited by Claudia Kawczynska (B.A., '80). Gift-givers can add in extras including a copy of Bark's best-selling anthology, "Dog is My Co-Pilot," and dog treats.

"The San Francisco Ferry Plaza Farmer's Market Cookbook: A Comprehensive Guide to Impeccable Produce Plus Seasonal Recipes" (Chronicle Books, '06) by alumna Peggy Knickerbocker offers easy-to-assemble recipes for the new grad on the go.

Gator art and entertainment
Image of the album cover of alum George Duke's "In a Mellow Tone"Treat jazz aficionados to "In a Mellow Tone" (Bizarre Planet, '06) from George Duke (M.A., '75). The jazz artist's latest recording offers both traditional standards and new songs, including a rearranged version of Duke Ellington's "In a Mellow Time," Frank Loesser's "Never Will I Marry" and "So Many Stars" by Sergio Mendes.

Help graduates stay in touch with far away friends and family with note cards featuring the work of some of SF State's most distinguished artists. The stylish stationery showcases artwork by Professor David Kuraoka and Professors Emeriti Richard McLean, Robert Bechtle and the late John Gutmann. Stop by the University Bookstore or shop the Bookstore online.

Tea Leaf Green, a rock quartet that formed at SF State and has since jammed alongside Bob Weir and Dave Matthews, has released "Rock 'n' Roll Band" (SCI Fidelity Records), a live CD. The recording makes a great gift for music fans -- and so do tickets to an upcoming show.

Gators on DVD
For fans who consider the cancellation of Arrested Development starring Jeffrey Tambor (B.A., '65) one of television's greatest travesties, it's a comfort to know that the Bluth family is only a DVD away. The collection of Seasons 1-3 makes a great gift for Gators with discriminating sitcom taste.

Critics have pointed to Annette Bening's (B.A., '80) performance as the highlight of "Running With Scissors," the movie based on the bestselling memoir by Augusten Burroughs. Now on DVD, the film is a good gift for Bening's many fans.

Argg! "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest," now on DVD, is appropriate for any grad who appreciates a little swashbuckling. The film features the Oscar-winning talents of sound designer/mixer/editor Christopher Boyes (B.A., '85).

Any grad who remembers the words "Some Pig" with nostalgia for childhood will welcome the chance to return to E.B. White's classic story in its latest film reiteration. The newly released DVD of "Charlotte's Web" features the animation talents of Assistant Professor Raquel Coelho.

Gator gastronomic delights
For grads with a sweet tooth, there are an array of tasty delights available from Sugar Bowl Bakery, owned by Andrew Ly (B.S., '86), including Brownie Bites for the chocolate lover and a new line of donuts with no trans fats.

Consider taking graduates to a post-Commencement celebratory meal at a San Francisco restaurant with a Gator connection, perhaps Beach Chalet or Park Chalet, both owned by Greg Trupelli (B.S., '94) and Lara Trupelli (B.A., '93) or Aziza, owned by chef Mourad Lahlou (B.A., '93; M.A., '95).

And when it comes time for the toast, why not raise a glass to grads -- a nice red or white from the Hess Collection Winery, run by President Tom Selfridge (M.A., '68), or some bubbly from Kermit Lynch (B.A., '67) Wine Merchants.

-- Adrianne Bee


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Last modified May 21, 2007 by University Communications