Thursday, October 31, 2002
There were some standouts this year in the media miscalculation department. Salinas City Council District 5 candidate RICHARD FORS dithered so over an interview time with the Weekly that the reporter finally gave up. District 5 hopeful MANUEL "MYSTERY MAN" RIVERA has never once returned a call or an email, and may not actually exist. And District 3 contender BRIAN BAUGHN must not have called back because he was too busy flipping coins: Do I run? Do I drop out? (He dropped out.) Strange, when talking to this newspaper is the quickest way to let 100,000 people know why they should elect you.
ThePeninsula had its share of badly behaved candidates, too. This year the Weekly sent out questionnaires, but judging from some responses, it was a staggering task just to get through all the 16 questions. Monterey Council hopeful CHUCK DELLA SALA scrawled half-sentence answers in a scarcely legible hand. Marina incumbent HOWARD GUSTAFSON also wrote his out by hand-but at least he wrote paragraphs.
The worst behavior issued from Pacific Grove, where council candidate RON SCHENK led the chorus of whining. Schenk scratched out one-word answers and incomplete sentences on the same page as the questions (to "Do you have a plan to address the [sewer] situation?", Schenk wrote, "yes"). Then, when he came in, he shook his head. "Whew! Sixteen questions! Everyone''s talking about it." Indeed, MORRIE FISHER, candidate for mayor, laughed snidely about it but quickly backpedaled when the Weekly sweetly asked if 16 questions posed too great a burden. ROBERT PACELLI rounded out the whiners section. These are people who will be poring over the budget to make sure the details add up?
DARK MATTERS...Squid always suspected the Peninsula had more than just skeletons in the closet. There''s a few ghosts, too.
No surprise. If a history steeped in Jesuits, top-dollar resorts, suspicious fires and a strong military presence doesn''t scream "haunt me," Squid doesn''t know what does.
It''s no secret that the NAVAL POSTGRADUATE SCHOOL has its share of hauntings. One ghost in particular frequents the school''s HOTEL DEL MONTE building. The original hotel burned in 1887, and the second one burned in 1926. Some say the ghost of the fire chief who failed to save the original hotel haunts the current building.
Monterey''s COLTON HALL was the sight of California''s 1849 constitutional convention. According to local lore, some of the delegates never left. Others say that the ghosts are the spirits of three men who were hanged outside the building long, long ago.
In PEBBLE BEACH, there''s the top-secret, haunted hotel that CLINT EASTWOOD doesn''t want you to know about. There''s also the LADY IN LACE, often spotted walking down the center of the 17 MILE DRIVE on dark, foggy nights.
Fellow ghost busters tell tales of the WOMAN IN BLACK who haunts the ROBERT LOUIS STEVENSON HOUSE of Old Monterey and the phantom NIGHTRIDER who gallops around the CARMEL MISSION.
And some haunted hotel site Squid stumbled upon described the rooms at Carmel''s BLUE SKY LODGE: "upper suites, very cold at night and feeling very uneasy in the master bedroom." Squid''s not too concerned about this one. Squid is cold-blooded.
Send Squid a question: firstname.lastname@example.org