Squid Speaks

BUTT OUT… Squid feels fortunate not to have an addictive personality. Well, there are things like shrimp-flavored popcorn, and watching the Olympics – at least Squid can’t do that every day while munching said popcorn, now that Sochi’s transitioned to being an empty city full of big, shiny new buildings. (Summer Olympics at Fort Ord, anyone?)

Anyone looking to kick a smoking habit need look no further than the conference room table of Assemblyman Mark Stone, D-Scotts Valley, who’s lately taken to using a clear gallon jug full of cigarette butts as a centerpiece. You come in to talk about the budget, public safety, education, and you get to look over the jug of stinky butts at Stone.

“When the plastics industry comes in, I sit here so they have to look at that,” Stone says in his Sacramento digs, pointing at a photo on the wall of a surfer riding a wave full of plastic debris.

The point of all this decor, presumably, is to get the plastics industry lobbyists to see the light. See, Stone has introduced a bill that would ban cigarette filters – which become butts – in California. Ironically, some enviros seem to be tentative about getting on board; they’re worried about smokers burning their poor little fingers. Seems to Squid those folks have never puffed on a cigarette (or anything else, for that matter).

Well, at least they won’t have the munchies.

FLYER POWER… Squid is a fan of the three R’s: reduce, reuse and recycle. So Squid was proud when Squid saw an R in action at Salinas Councilman Steve McShane’s big announcement Feb. 20.

McShane had gathered 40 or so of his closest friends and supporters – among them Mayor Joe Gunter and former Mayor Dennis Donohue – at the steps of theNational Steinbeck Center in Oldtown Salinas to make it public: He’s running for re-election.

And the slick pol and owner of McShane’s Nursery (his olive shirt rakishly unbuttoned at the top) especially adhered R-for-reuse. McShane’s team had set up a table filled with beautiful, glossy campaign flyers touting the pol’s achievements: business owner, manager, Rotarian.

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Turns out those flyers were four years old – the same ones he used in the previous election. Squid confirmed this with Eric Andresen, McShane’s campaign manager.

All the priorities and biographical details are the same, Andresen said.

Except – uh – those endorsements, the 24 people and organizations who gave McShane the thumbs up in 2010.

Yeah, those are still relevant. Mostly. Probably. Andresen said to check back as the campaign got under way.

At least we can say one thing for sure: Steve McShane “would appreciate your vote November 2nd.” Oh wait. Election day this year is Nov. 4.

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