Squid Fry for Sep 13, 2007
Thursday, September 13, 2007
WINGED MONSTERS… Squid was in Del Rey Oaks on Sunday night, talking with Squid associates and sipping herbal tea, when a plane streaked low over the house. Minutes later the plane swooped overhead again, this time just to the east, then again, making lawnmower stripes across the sky. It went on for hours on Sept. 9.
Now, Squid is a reasonable mollusk not prone to hysteria, and Squid understands that the voracious little light brown apple moth poses a very real threat to California’s agriculture. But Squid is creeped out by the militaristic approach with which the feds and the state have imposed the aerial spray plan. The public meetings called at the 11th hour seemed to have just been for show; Squid gets the sense that the deal was done before local residents even heard about it.
After the City of Monterey said, “Hey, wait a minute,” other local institutions jumped on the bandwagon, noting that the whole scheme seems kinda spooky and undemocratic, not to mention hasty (especially considering the proximity of the marine sanctuary, where some of Squid’s closest friends reside). But their strongest objections came only days before the barely-postponed spray, and the State sure didn’t give them a chance to regroup.
Considering the assurances given to communities blanketed with DDT in the mid-1900s, “trust us” doesn’t bring much comfort. Especially not to Squid’s cat, who’s still pissy about being locked inside for three days.
PAY TO PLAY… Squid grinds Squid’s beak upon finding a parking ticket slipped under this cephalopod’s windshield wiper. These pains could be avoided if Squid would just pony up for garage parking. But given the choice Squid will risk a $30 ticket for an afternoon of free curbside access. So Squid understands the mentality of Oldtown Salinas workers who check their cars tires every two hours for chalk marks. Salinas city officials apparently don’t.
The City wants to take its parking enforcement into the digital age. The new technology, which the City Council was expected to approve Sept. 11, would snap photos of violator license plates. No, it’s not simple, mean-spirited fun: The City wants downtown employees to park in its debt-heavy garage and other city lots to free up short-term spaces for shoppers.
There’s at least one thing, however, that city officials are missing. Downtown workers are also the main people that support Oldtown businesses; cracking down on them will upset the fragile economic balance of Salinas’ core. So Main Street may end up with more free spaces but less happy business owners. Meanwhile, Squid is devising a new way to park for free. (Walking? Nah.)