Squid Fry 12.20.12
Squid speaks on water wars.
Thursday, December 20, 2012
HOT WATER… When Squid wants to get away from it all, particularly after an action-packed Salinas City Council meeting, Squid detours down into the deep, where the water is cold and still and pretty much devoid of aquatic compatriots. Which is exactly where Brent Constantz, formerly of would-be green cement manufacturer Calera and founder of hopeful rainmaker DeepWater Desal, plans to source water for his proposed desal plant.
The fact that the Monterey Peninsula appears to have passed Constantz by and that he’s produced zero water so far seems not to matter to the Salinas council, which voted 4-2 Dec. 18 to proceed with five years of talks with Constantz’ new consortium, a melding of DeepWater Desal and his yet-to-be-formed DeepWater Data, which would work with data processing manufacturer G3. Cold water could cool notoriously energy-intensive data processing centers right here, near the heart of Silicon Valley, in Constantz’ idyllic world. “Data-center efficiency is the name of the game right now,” Constantz says. And G3 honcho John Watkins says, “We see an extraordinary opportunity to develop an ecosystem of high technology right here in Salinas.”
Squid remembers hearing something similar about electric cars before the city invested in Green Vehicles, which left behind zero vehicles, zero jobs, a Chapter 7 bankruptcy and a spendy lawsuit in which the city will never, ever recover the money it gave Green Vehicles. Not to worry, Councilman Steve McShane said confidently, “These guys are not just coming in from off the street. They’re savvy businessmen.” At which Squid sighed and then muttered, “Amen,” after gadfly and perennial supervisor candidate Ed Mitchell got it exactly right: “Good luck.”
EYE AI AI… Friends of Action Council director Larry Imwalle are used to seeing pictures of him dangling from the face of some rock formation – dude’s a fanatical climber. So when word came down the nonprofit exec had been injured in a freak accident, most everyone assumed he fell off some cliff. Not so, Squid recently found out. In the freakiest of freak circumstances, Imwalle was out running when a passing vehicle kicked up a piece of debris that rocketed square into his left eye. Three weeks later, Imwalle’s looking at surgery to repair the wound, and at a pile of medical bills that would be completely horrifying if he didn’t have insurance: about $1,700 for an hour’s stay at Natividad Medical Center; nearly $6,000 for the ambulance ride to San Jose Regional Medical Center; and $33,000 for about five hours in the emergency room there. It’s yet another reason Squid likes to stay indoors in the cozy lair – there’s less chance of freak injury when you don’t go outside.