Thursday, September 9, 2004
MATCHMAKER… Finally—another innovative idea that allows Squid to use even fewer brain cells than Squid already does. Because really, independent thinking and conscious action are soooo overrated. This great new thing is a Web site, www.presidentmatch.com. No, it’s not a dating service for presidential candidates (and don’t believe those malicious mollusks spreading rumors that Squid stumbled upon the site while trying to meet up with John Kerry’s hottie step-son, Chris Heinz). PresidentMatch is a site that makes life just that much easier for the simple-minded. It tells you who to vote for in November. Answer a dozen or so questions about various topics, and www.presidentmatch.com spits out the presidential candidate best suited for your ideology. Who knew selecting the leader of the free world was this easy?
GROWING PAINS… Sure, it may be located in the rolling hills between Prunedale and Salinas, but in Squid’s humble opinion, Rancho San Juan is no city on a hill. The Rancho San Juan Opposition Coalition (RSJOC) agrees. Last weekend, Sept. 4 through Sept. 6, the coalition began its advisory petition drive. The grassroots group, chaired by Julie Engell, gathered signatures urging the Monterey County Board of Supervisors to deny the huge development project—4,000 homes on 2,581 acres. Petition-gatherers also warned residents about the future of things to come should the Supes approve RSJ: it will just about double the amount of cars on a stretch of Highway 101; it will pump an additional 700 acre-feet of water from an over-drafted aquifer; 3,200 of 4,000 homes won’t be affordable to about 80 percent of county residents; it will cost the county about $1.5 million annually (that’s enough to pay the salaries of 25 cops or staff nurses at Natividad Medical Center).
And if the Supes don’t listen, the opposition has said they’re willing to ask a judge, or the voters, to stop the project. “I’m convinced we’ll take it to the courts,” Salinas City Councilwoman Jyl Lutes previously told the Weekly. Added Alexander Urciuoli, a member of the Salinas-based Citizens For Responsible Growth and the newly formed RSJOC, “it will be another Measure E.” (Squid Note: He’s referring to the anti-sprawl law passed by Marina voters in 2000, which created an urban growth boundary and severely limited a development at Armstrong Ranch.) Yowza. As if the County didn’t have enough lawsuits on its hands. Seems to Squid that the County Counsel’s office is the one department that has pretty good job security in these tough economic times.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY…The Colossus of Gold, a cartoon strip created by local notable Snick Farkas, marks its 10th anniversary on Sept. 9. Yup, Squid’s a Farkas fan. The comic strip transports its readers to the mystical-yet-familiar town of Specific Groove, and lampoons local hot-button issues like raccoon tolerance, Monarch butterfly worship, aesthetic sensibilities and tide-pool politics. Sounds like a wacky place to live. Squid’s sure glad it’s only make believe.