One of Santa's helpers escaped from the North Pole and got on BART in Berkeley. Clad in green fleece and a Seussical Christmas tree hat, the elf pulled out red-framed, polka-dot readers to peruse Per Petterson's Out Stealing Horses. Does texting count as reading? Two "emo" goth hippie girls (okay, picture black flowing skirts like Stevie Nicks wore in the 70s, worn by eerily pale young women with heavy black eye make up whose hair came close to dread locks) got on in West Oakland and proceeded to text each other for the rest of the trip. I am way behind on what the cultural relevance of that is, but . . . Dare I admit I was reading Barack the Barbarian , a serial comic produced by Devil's Due Publishing? The loin-cloth wearing Barack battles his scantily clad nemesis, Red Sarah, who resembles Raquel Welch in One Million Years BC except for the sword and schoolmarm glasses. Did Raquel kill anything in that movie? Where do you catch people reading?