OK KAREN… Squid sat in front of the television, transfixed by news reports of “Liberate” protests taking place around the country. Biped mammals are going stir crazy while sheltering in place, unable to get their hair done or dine in at restaurants, and decided to rally around the old U.S. Constitution as an excuse to get outdoors and shout.

That’s what Aromas resident Gina Aubrey, a former Salinas Fire Department firefighter, had in mind when she took to Facebook on April 26 and announced her intention to protest against the ongoing shelter-in-place order. Aubrey, who sued her former department for harassment and walked off with a $400,000 settlement, invited people to join her at 8:30am, April 27, at Alisal Street and Riker Terrace to walk a block over to the county government center where they would act out their First Amendment rights.

Almost as quickly as Aubrey posted the invite, she took it down, because she got dragged in a big way. One commenter wondered, “What’s she going to do, ask to speak to the virus’ manager?”

Squid loves a good protest, so Squid headed over to watch the scene unfold. Squid found Aubrey, holding a small American flag, hanging out in the parking lot of the Alisal Street firehouse, talking to a few old colleagues and a pair of mostly bored-looking Salinas cops – with zero social distancing, gloves or face masks involved.

About 45 minutes later, one firefighter gave her a hug (no masks), another shook her hand (no gloves) and then Aubrey departed, having never made it to the county building to protest whatever it was she planned on protesting.

FAKE NEWS… Squid’s been moping around the lair, trying to avoid mirrors so as not to see how disheveled Squid has gotten. Squid needs (in no particular order) a facial and a deep moisturizing tentaclure (like a manicure, only for cephalopods). If Squid had hair, Squid would definitely need a roots touch-up, a keratin treatment and a trim.

That’s why Squid was so totally miffed upon seeing a widely spread Facebook post claiming that the Monterey Police Department violated the shelter-in-place order by hiring a barber to come in to the station and make cops look spiffy. One rule for them, one rule for Squid and the rest of us? Nuh uh, not on this cephalopod’s watch. And so Squid fired off a strongly worded email to Chief Dave Hober and City Manager Hans Uslar, asking, “What gives?”

What gives, apparently, is that it never happened. And so Monterey PD made a Facebook post of its own: “The MPD DID NOT bring anyone in to provide haircuts at the MPD. Any observer simply needs to look at some of the home-performed hairstyling by MPD families on our officers to verify this fact.”

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