Squid vs. Mosquitoes...Evildoers be warned...Visions of Pulitzers danced in their heads...
Thursday, November 1, 2001
With knotted tentacles, Squid decided to find out just which ink-sucking entity was trying to get its hands on a couple of Squid''s Washingtons.
Squid couldn''t help but wonder who''d really miss this agency if it buzzed off tomorrow. Ironically, District employee Peter Ghormley told Squid he often wondered the same thing, but had answered that question to his own satisfaction just as many times.
Ghormley says that in 1950, when the District landed in the area, North Monterey County was "uninhabitable" because of the mosquitoes. He recounted a shudder-evoking story of days past when the bugs had to be burned out of tractor radiators every 30 minutes in order for a farmer to complete a day''s work. Tongue-twisting mosquito-caused ailments abounded--Western Equine Encephalitis, West Nile Fever, malaria, canine heartworm. Squid was suddenly ecstatic to fork over the $2 fee.
Ghormley says not all cities in the county take part in the program. Residents of those cities are not charged the fee. They freeload off the rest of us in times of need, like the time the City of San Lucas "called in desperation" when its mosquitoes were out of control.
"Boo-hoo," thought Squid. If you can''t fork over two bucks a year and quit your freeloading, scratch this.
EVILDOERS BE WARNED...Squid got quite a fright earlier in the week. And Squid''s not talking about freakish Halloween costumes. Imagine, if you will, strolling up to the BARRIOS UNIDOS office in East Salinas on Nov. 6, ready to vote, and coming face to face with...a life-size cut out of Monterey County Registrar of Voters, TONY ANCHUNDO. It''s enough to make one''s tentacles quiver.
Squid''s nightmare began with a fax from a concerned citizen who had just learned that Nicolasa Alvarez, the co-founder of Barrios Unidos, Salinas Chapter, is running for the Hartnell Board of Trustees. And that electioneering violations were reported at the site in the last Assembly Race. "To allow voting at that site for this race at the very least looks," quoth the watchdog. So Squid called Tony.
Yes, there were problems last time around, says Anchundo, but the polling place still stands. "It''s a facility that the community is familiar with," he says. "The message will be made loud and clear to those individuals who are going to conduct illegal tactics--it won''t be tolerated. I will certainly have a presence there during this election." Prompting Squid to wonder will he astrally project himself to Barrios Unidos, or shape shift into a fly on the wall? But Anchundo had another idea: a big, cardboard cut-out. "Have you seen me? That would scare anybody away."
VISIONS OF PULITZERS DANCED IN THEIR HEADS...Squid sees fame, fortune and true love in the future and it has to be true because MISS CLEO has a vision for Squid. Miss C''s all-seeing, all-knowing reps called the Weekly three times on a recent morning. Maybe the psychic airwaves weren''t functioning. Or perhaps police were eavesdropping on Miss Cleo and her crafty lackeys were trying to throw them off course. Each time the voice at the end of the tunnel had the same message: "Miss Cleo has a vision for someone at this number." Squid hopes it was a vision of clear, Caribbean waters, swimming with comely cephalopods.
Put a bug in Squid''s ear: email@example.com