Daily news from Monterey County Weekly

ETC. Photo of the day by Tajha Chappellet-Lanier. The nectarine harvest runs into the heirloom tomato harvest. Photographed with an iPhone X. Submit your best horizontal photos. (Please include the location where the photo was taken in the caption.)

A ride down the coast provides a taste of local scooter culture.

Good afternoon. 

Agata Popęda here, testing out the local scooter culture and enjoying the ride.

Monterey has a tendency to put itself right on the first pages of history. In this case I’m referring not to the city’s title as the first California capital, but to the fact it has become, since June 2021, the official headquarters of the Scooters of Anarchy scooter club.

As Club President Daniel Dreifuss (who happens to work as the staff photographer for the Weeklynoticed after he moved here with his beautiful Rosso Red Vespa 300 (touring edition), there are plenty of scooter enthusiasts in this scenic area that offers curvy coastal roads and exciting turns, as if created for scooter lovers. 

One of the local traditions is the annual meet up of the South Bay Scooter Posse and San Luis Obispo Posse. Canceled in 2020, the two groups managed to hold their “Meet in the Middle” ride in majestic Big Sur on Saturday, Aug. 27. Naturally, Scooters of Anarchy decided to join the ride and took me along too. 

The event gathered various models of Vespa, Honda Helix, BMW 300 and Suzuki Burgman, among others. While dominated by male riders, the “Meet in the Middle” event attracted at least one female rider on a yellow Honda Helix. Many age groups and ethnicities were represented. The event culminated with lunch at the Big Sur Taphouse in the company of fellow bicycle brothers. 

“The weather was decent, with sunshine at the meeting point,” says Dreifuss. “The event was successful and fun with a good turnout and a fun reunion since last year was canceled due to Covid.”



During this Saturday adventure, I learned two things about scooters.
 The first is that they make the Big Sur experience even more breathtaking, offering a chance to take a really good look at the ocean abyss off Bixby Bridge. The second piece of wisdom is the following: Sometimes, gate sensors don’t recognize scooters as vehicles and will not let them through. This lesson might be particularly painful at one of those lonely Big Sur gates on a distant hill, far away from houses and people, where the forest quiets down and the afternoon drags, minute by minute, in a sweet balsamic silence.

Sometimes even a president must give up, get down off the scooter, and sit on the ground among the ferns. Sometimes there is nothing else there to do but stare at the horizon and wait for a vehicle to come. And pray that it is a car, not a scooter.

-Agata Popęda, staff writer, aga@mcweekly.com

Correction: Due to an editing error, yesterday’s Monterey County NOW misstated the identity of one of the 34 signatories to a letter requesting a mask mandate. One of them is named Leslie Girard, who serves as a trustee for the South Monterey County Joint Union High School District. However, this is not the same Leslie Girard who serves as Monterey County Counsel, as was inaccurately reported.

BY THE NUMBERS

In 2019 Americans took 136 million trips on shared bikes and scooters, a 60-percent increase from 2018, according to the National Association of City Transportation Officials measure of micromobility in the U.S. The map above shows where shared scooter systems are found across the country.

LATEST LOCAL NEWS

Repeal of county law prohibiting private operation of desal plants set for Sept. 21 discussion. Monterey County is the only county in California with a law that prohibits private companies from operating new desalination plants. That law, passed in 1989, is now up for potential repeal.

Monterey Peninsula College wins a $1.8 million two-year grant from the U.S. Department of Education. The grant is expected to increase access to educational opportunities during Covid-19, especially for those students who are considered vulnerable, like English language learners or those lacking technical skills.

While the U.S. presence in Afghanistan is over, the war on terror has become its own Forever War. In an opinion piece, Karen J. Greenberg argues that “forever wars have created a new form of forever law, forever policy, forever power and a forever-changed America.”

SPONSORED: EAT+DRINK

Melville Tavern Indoor, Patio Dining & Takeout Mon-Fri 11:30am, Sat & Sun Brunch at 10am. Happy Hour Sun-Thur 4-6pm 643.9525, 484 Washington St, Monterey.

Beach House at Lovers Point Indoor Dining & Takeout Daily at 4:30pm Sunset Supper, cocktails & wine. Click for menus/order. 375.2345, 620 Ocean View, PG.

Abalonetti on the Wharf Indoor & Outdoor Dining plus Takeout. Everyday 11:30am-8:30pm. Monterey's Best Calamari plus seafood, pasta & more. Click for menus/order. 373.1851

The Sardine Factory Indoor dining nightly at 5pm. Special Early Dinner Menu from 5-6pm. Click here for menus, details and reservations or to place a takeout order. 701 Wave Street, Monterey, 831-373-3775

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LOCAL INSPIRATION

LOCAL INSPIRATION of the day. “The Nasty Woman,” a creation of artist Randi Beer, is a watercolor gouache inspired by a poem of the same name. This piece was painted in Carmel for the Hacienda Carmel show. Submit your Local Inspiration (digital art, music, multimedia, video, etc.; please include the medium you’ve used, and note when and where it was created).

Extended happy hour, plus music, at Rio Grill. Rio Grill is extending its happy hour until 10pm for the next three days and will be bringing in the musical talents of the Zack Freitas Band (Sept. 1), Andre Castiano (Sept. 2) and The Money Band (Sept. 3). 

Check out the sound bites from the Organic Community of Santa Cruz. Their new podcast, Radio Organic, just dropped its first episode.

Keep up with Monterey Peninsula College. The Academic Senate meeting will be held 2:30-4:30pm on Tuesday, Sept. 2.

BEST OF MONTEREY BAY® REAL ESTATE

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realestate.montereycountyweekly.com

  
IN CONTEXT

An epic battle to save South Lake Tahoe. The Caldor fire rages toward Nevada.
- Los Angeles Times, Sept. 1, 2021

Covid long-haulers feel ignored by science. The lingering effects of this virus still aren’t well understood.
- The Atlantic, Sept. 1, 2021

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HELPFUL DISTRACTIONS

Would you drink it? The newly announced, and hotly debated, Bud Light pumpkin spice hard seltzer, that is.

Dogs know if you’re intentionally withholding treats. The findings of a new study could mean that dogs possess an aspect of cognition often considered to be unique to humans: the ability to acknowledge the inner workings of others.

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