TURF WAR…Squid’s enormous eyes allow for extraordinary depth perception, which not only helps Squid shovel in fish, but also makes Squid a pretty damn skilled soccer player. So you can imagine the shock on July 8, when Squid’s futbol compañeros showed up at their favorite field, across from Seaside City Hall in Laguna Grande Park, and found it studded with two dozen baby trees.

City Manager Ray Corpuz and Public Works boss Tim O’Halloran confirm the trees are intended as soccer-blockers. The lawn is for “passive recreation,” they tell Squid. “I don’t think people would want to sit on bare dirt for Blues in the Park,” Corpuz says.

The one-time $1,600 spent on the saplings is less than half the city’s annual cost of restoring the lawn from soccer abuse, Parks Director Mark Parker adds. And the drought-tolerant trees, from olive to flowering plum, should reduce water use and provide shade for picnickers.

But Monterey resident Joyce Porter sees it as mean-spirited. “Tell me if that’s not the craziest thing ever,” she emails Squid. “What is a park for: playing and running around.”

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At least there’s still a futbol-friendly field on the Monterey side of the park. That is, when it’s not overrun by geese.

SPEAKING OF GRASS…Squids tentacles are exhausted from all the web surfing and channel changing it’s taken to keep up with the travails of media monopolist Rupert Murdoch. The Aussie-born creator of the Fox Broadcasting Company has been taking a creaming—figuratively and literally—as he explains why employees of his now defunct British tabloid News of the World hacked into the cell phones of a missing and murdered teenage girl (and then deleted messages so they could listen to more, giving her family false hope she was still alive); relatives of dead British soldiers; celebrities; members of the British Royal family; etc. On Tuesday, as Murdoch testified before a British parliamentary committee, an irate onlooker tried to smack him in the face with a shaving cream pie.

Squid’s wondering if Rupert and his wife, Wendi Deng (who proved she will smack a bitch when she went after said pie-thrower with nails extended), might retreat to their Carmel Valley ranch to recover from all that exhausting explaining. Of course, there’s been scandal there too. Squid fondly recalls writing in July 2007 about Monterey County narcotics detectives storming Murdoch’s ranch and eradicating thousands and thousands of marijuana plants. In that case, the live-in gardener was to blame; clearly, it’s hard for a gazillionaire to find reliable help, no matter what the country. And it’s too bad those plants are gone, because Squid guesses Murdoch could probably use a good, long inhale right about now.

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