Squid Fry for Jan 16, 2003
Thursday, January 16, 2003
HADDAD V. CALIFORNIA...Squid's finally figured out what it takes to become a professional gadfly. Rule One: Whether you're a small army or an army of one, call yourself a group. Rule Two: Make up a group name that contains the words "alliance" or "friends" or "concerned citizens." Names that can be abbreviated to a catchy acronym (like DAVID DILWORTH's HOPE, Helping Our Peninsula's Environment) are preferred. Rule Three: Run for elected offices. Lots of 'em. In different jurisdictions, even. Rule Four: Be very litigious. So when it comes to gadflys, LOU HADDAD holds a special place in Squid's cold little heart.
The former Seaside mayor and water board member's got more than three decades worth of campaigns under his belt. On Nov. 5, 2002, he won 1,943 votes in a failed attempt to sit on the Monterey City Council. He chairs a group called the Alliance of Citizens with Water Alternatives (ACWA, get it?) which rates high on the Squid Gadfly-ometer. And he has some wacky ideas about how to solve the Peninsula's water shortage.
Haddad says that an obscure colonial law, the 1848 Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, gives Monterey water rights to an additional 4,400 acre feet of Carmel River water per year. Three years ago, Haddad sued the state water board for water rights to the Carmel and Salinas rivers, based on the Guadalupe Hidalgo treaty. Now he's back in court.
"It may be worthy to note that I am presently in court attempting to substitute myself for the City of Monterey, alleging that since the city failed to protect its citizens' Constitutional rights, that I have the standing to do so," he writes in a recent letter to the MONTEREY PENINSULA WATER MANAGEMENT District. "Substituting an individual for an agency is a legal method to affect something that a local agency is obligated to do, but the local court didn't see it that way. Consequently I am in the process of appealing the trial court's decision to the Sixth District Court of Appeals."
Huh? Squid's not the brightest cephalopod in the sea, but Squid's still willing to bet that the judge will kick Haddad's dedicated-yet-dippy heiney out the door before you can say "Alliance of Citizens with Water Alternatives." Squid will be there, of course, taking copious notes. Sigh. Squid's hero.
WAITING FOR MERLOT...Squid likes a nice meal as much as the next omnivore, especially if Squid doesn't have to catch it. So when Big Squid, Squid's dad, volunteered to take his progeny to dinner, Squid jumped at the chance to try BOUCHEE, which everyone else in the Weekly newsroom has fallen in love with. The first time Squid went, the place was packed, which is generally a good sign, except that on this occasion it was a little too packed--there were no tables. The host offered an indefinite wait at the bar until a table might open up. But after ten minutes, the impatient Big Squid walked out the door and Little Squid followed. A week later, dad showed up hungry and took his Squiddly back to Carmel--again hopeful, but again with no reservation (squid tend to be impulsive). The host again was welcoming, so Squid and Daddy sat and waited, hoping that one of the late reservations would turn into a no-show. Sure enough, after fifteen minutes, a table became available. But then, just as Big Squid was enjoying his bread and perusing his menu, the four-person party (a half hour late by this time) arrived. The host promptly came over and demanded the table (pleasantly enough). A squishy retreat followed, with bread crumbs literally falling out of Squid's beak, as Daddy squelched angrily along behind. Now, Squid's heard nothing but good things about Bouchee. But in Squid's world, a table and a menu means food is forthcoming--not a near-miss-meal. For that, Squid's better off in the sea.