This evening I got back to my new home of five years in Bend, Oregon, from my old digs of fifty years in Berkeley, California. I went there for the closing day and memorial party for the Caffe Mediterraneum coffee shop. That venue is where a huge chunk of my life was spent and I loved every minute of it, even the annoying ones. It has a large pole in the middle of the room which supports the ceiling and I considered it the center of the Earth, and still do.
There must have been at least forty people whom I had known for decades at the closing. These were people with whom I had lived nearly my entire adult life, and many of them can say the same thing. Some of them were world famous scholars, some were famous radicals, most were just plain interesting to be with. This cafe was the epicenter of so much that happened in the world. I used to think … where is the most interesting place for me to be … the obvious answer was Berkeley because that was where so very many things were coming into being during my time there. The intellectual foment from campus fed us, and we fed it. Major stuff happened.
The Med was, in fact, the Center of the World for planet Earth.