I wanted to start this week by congratulating Pat Hedges and everybody over at his SLO County Sheriff's Department. At the end of March, they plucked the sweet fruit of a year of investigation and discovered that gasp! a well-known medical marijuana dispensary in Morro Bay actually had marijuana on the premises. They discovered other stuff, too, but they're not saying what because their lips are pretty much conveniently zipped by some official federal seal on some warrants or something.
I'm no law expert which comes as a shock to you, I'm sure but I do know that holes between federal and state law concerning marijuana use are big enough to drive a truck through. Such trucks usually end up slamming into federal brick walls, however, sometimes built with help from local law enforcement. Too obscure a metaphor? I know, I know. All this is to say that even if some crazy Californians say it's fine for you to light up and fight glaucoma with help from a doctor, not everybody in the state necessarily wants you to see the light. I'll leave it at that.
In other news, I heard tell that folks over at the Rogue Voice were saying that I've been neutered neutered! which raises several questions in my mind and elsewhere, not the least of which involves the taking away of the physical balls of someone who didn't necessarily have any to start with. I'll let you figure out the implications of that one.
Radio talk show host Dave Congalton is apparently going around saying that he's the new Shredder, which is a big load off my mind. Hey, Dave: Could you get your next column in to me by April 9? I'm thinking of going on vacation since I don't really have any work to do anymore.
All of this came up when I was rummaging through the intern cage for some reason or another. In the dankest corner, beyond the prison-brewed jug of Applejack wine, I spotted the interns' bedding. It was made entirely of old New Times issues. Years old. In fact, they were all from the years when Stacey Warde, the top man over at Rogue Voice, was an editor here. Weird, huh? I felt the bedding. Soft. The only exception to that rule was that the pillow was from a fairly recent vintage. It was made entirely from this paper's Christmas issue, written by editor Ryan Miller. It was about Jesus. What could it all mean? I don't know, but it made me remember something Warde wrote last month: "I figure it's best to be good to people and keep my mouth shut if I can't think of anything good to say about them." Way to go, Stacey. You took the words out of my mouth.
And speaking of Grover Beach I'm sure someone was somewhere right about now talk around town is that City Councilman Larry Versaw has been kicking around the idea of leaving his post. More than just kicking. Lining up the ball and firing it at the keeper. Gooooooooal!
The city posted a message that the former mayor recently announced his intention to resign his council seat because he's moving soon and won't actually be a Grover Beach resident any more. It looks like his last day in the chair is April 7, and then he's off to Nipomo or somewhere down in the southern underbelly of the county.
I personally don't have a problem with people making decisions for places they don't live President George W. Bush does it all the time, and he wait a minute. Maybe I do have a problem with it. Come to think of it, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger doesn't live here on the Central Coast, I mean and I'm not a huge fan of all of his decisions either. Like his blanket stop-global-warming-for-the-good-of-the-state law that just assumes the rest of us will come up with some magical way to reduce emissions and plan better cities and ride our bikes everywhere.
Here's my idea: Start by strapping about 50 tandem bicycles together. Next, find a group of nah. It'll never work. Where was I? Oh yeah, Grover Beach.
When ol' Larry does exit stage left, I guess the council's got a few options. They could just fill the seat, which seems to be the easiest way out of the one-man-down situation, but I know other cities that have done something similar in the past and the citizenry is never exactly overjoyed with the decision. Seems people like being able to vote for who's in charge or something. Silly Americans. If Richard Nixon taught us anything, it's that democracy is just an idea, a lofty construct, a pie-in-the-sky dream that can usher in the likes of Gerald Ford. So, Grover Beach, you could have that going for you. He was a big hit on Saturday Night Live. Or was that Chevy Chase?
On the other hand, the Grover Beachers could just hold a whole new election, which is likely the longer, more complicated, more expensive way to go.
I saw that the council was planning on hearing from the city attorney at its April 2 meeting on how to "fill an anticipated vacancy," and I wanted to go to the meeting I really did but I was still suffering from the effects of a particularly diabolical April Fool's Day joke that involved a roll of duct tape, a jar of honey, and about 1,000 fire ants. Yowch.
I later learned that it looks like the recommendation points toward expedition, which is a fancy way of saying, "Let's get this over with and fast!" In this case, the fastest way would certainly be a council appointment, not one of those long, drawn-out elections that get even longer when people start slinging mud and such. Is there any mud in Grover Beach? I'll look into it.
Well, it's their call. Of course it's their call. And it looks like they're going to start calling potential replacements. They've got to hurry, though. At the latest the very latest it looks like they've got to have names by early May. Mid-April if they're on the ball. Now that's some fast democracy.