Saturday, May 5, 2007

Cool Stuff: Oaklandish

You've seen the ubiquitous bumper stickers and t-shirts, but what, exactly, is Oaklandish?

Turns out that it's a "stealth multi-form public art and media campaign designed to illuminate the unique culture and history" of Oakland, whose tree-and-roots symbol represents "the strange luster and oddball spirit" of East Bay life. The cooperative behind the campaign is Nonchalance Culture_Labs, which describes itself as "the Don Quixote of Oakland, waging battle against monolithic corporate advertising as if it were a windmill."

Um, OK.

Whatever Oaklandish and Nonchalance are, though, they have some hekka tight homegrown merch:

Where else can you find a Patty Hearst SLA badge? Or a "Bump City" Tee (after the city's Seventies funk heydey nickname)? Or a print featuring such local luminaries as Bruce Lee, Hells Angels founder Sonny Barger, and the real Rosie the Riveter? (If only they still made their "Oakland Booty" underwear.)

So represent, Oaktown -- because there's nothing like a little hometown pride.

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