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Unemployment Day Trip: Good Coffee, Cheap Grub, and Local Art on Tennyson Street

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Having been in the unemployment line twice in my life, I’m now looking to find the silver lining in the rush of resume-updating and online-classified-refreshing that can consume my days. So, what might the silver lining possibly be? It turns out being job-free affords you a lot of free time. More free time than any of us have probably ever had on a weekday–hence, the launch of our Unemployment Day Trip series. First stop? Tennyson Street in the Berkeley neighborhood.

Cup of Joe: Tenn Street Coffee

If you get going early, stop by Tenn Street Coffee (418 Tennyson St.). On weekdays from 6:30 to 9 a.m. they offer $1 off all their coffee drinks. Also, with free wireless Internet and comfy seating, it’s a good place to stop in and see if any of your job leads have e-mailed you back.

Cheap Diner Grub: Kyle’s Kitchen

There are two ways to label your morning meal–it’s either breakfast or it’s brunch. Brunch means your eggs have, say, Brie in them, and your bill can look like last night’s receipt for dinner and drinks. Breakfast is a different animal, and Kyle’s (4018 Tennyson St.) embodies it perfectly–you get mismatched mugs, a simple menu, and sassy waitresses keeping your coffee warm. It’s also a great place to go in solo and grab a place at the long bar, always piled with the day’s newspaper. Be sure to notice they offer half-orders of most of their breakfasts. It’s always more than enough food and keeps things even easier on your checkbook.

Cheap Browsing: Galleries and Studios

If the First Friday Art Walk crowds can get to be a bit much, stop by any of the myriad Tennyson art galleries during the daytime hours. Most galleries open around 9 or 10 a.m. View a complete list here.

Earning Money: Trade in Books at Barely Read Used Books

There’s something in my DNA that sucks me straight into used bookstores. It’s like I can sniff out the smell of old pages blocks away. However, with a more economically-minded brain, I now schlep my old books over to Barely Read Used Books (3931 Tennyson St.) to earn a little dough back.

Dinnertime: Recession Special at Parisi

This is the kind of stimulus package I can get behind–cheap grub. Parisi (4401 Tennyson St.) offers two take-out dinner specials–two can eat for $15, and four can eat for $25. The menu of the Economic Relief special changes weekly. A few rules to keep in mind: Parisi only offers this Monday thru Thursday, and you need to call in your order before 6 p.m. and pick it up by 7 p.m.

Did I forget one of your favorite Tennyson shops, or do you want to tip me off to another good day trip? E-mail me at [email protected] to send me suggestions, or leave ideas in the comments below.

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