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Bob Dunning

Bob Dunning: Our bag law won’t help that seagull

By From page A2 | December 13, 2013

NO-SEE SEAGULL … don’t know if you’ve seen that photo making the rounds on Facebook that shows an allegedly “local” seagull with its head covered by a Walmart plastic bag, exposing two evils at once: plastic bags and Walmart … the message here is that our just-passed plastic bag ban is indeed a good thing for wildlife … the only problem with this logic, of course, is that we don’t have a Walmart in Davis … furthermore, from my many fact-finding expeditions to the Walmart in Woodland, I have determined that no self-respecting Davisite has ever set foot in a Walmart, other than to ask directions … therefore, our plastic bag ban will do little to mitigate the excruciating problem of sea birds flying around town with Walmart bags on their heads …

A DOLLAR FOR YOUR THOUGHTS … finally visited the new Family Dollar store in Stonegate and, much to my surprise, there were many, many items priced much higher than a dollar … bargains galore, of course, but still more than a single dollar … it was a typical mistake for an Eastsider, given that our very own Dollar Tree along East Eighth Street has absolutely no items for more than a dollar …

I always thought it was some sort of unwritten law that if a retail outlet has the word “Dollar” in its title, no item can be sold for more than a dollar … turns out I was wrong … on the Eastside, of course, a dollar item is considered a bargain … on the Westside, however, discriminating shoppers tend not to trust an item that costs only a dollar … I guess that’s why we have a Dollar Tree and they have a Family Dollar …

FACTOIDS-R-US … quick, which is the first day in December (in Davis) when the sun finally begins to set later than it did the day before? … those who said the day after the winter solstice would be wrong … those who said Dec. 11 can move to the head of the class …

MANTECA MADNESS … this from an editorial by Dennis Wyatt, managing editor of the esteemed Manteca Bulletin in the San Joaquin Valley … under the heading “Flush the water tank art idea down the toilet,” Wyatt writes: “The nice thing about the 3.7 million-gallon water tank going up on Atherton Drive is that you won’t see much of it.’ … sound familiar? … later he notes “Massive obtrusive water tanks in a perfect world should do their job and not be seen.” … he also points out that trees near the tank soon will grow up and obscure it from view …

And then — are you sitting down? — he writes “This all begs the question: Why does anyone in their right mind — myself included — even want to consider spending anywhere from $15,000 to $30,000 placing a high-profile decal, an American flag replica, a mural or even lettering on the tank? As for spending money on art, lettering and such on top so people surfing the Internet one day using sites such as Google Earth could possibly pick out Manteca by the top of the water tank being cutting-edge, we all need to get a grip.” …

And finally, a concrete suggestion about how better to use scarce public dollars: “Take the $56,700 or so that the tank art for both the side and top would cost and use it to launch a program to aggressively retrofit existing homes that do not have low-flow toilets.” … this Wyatt fellow makes way too much sense … in fact, the next time the Davis City Council decides to entertain adding another sister city, I’m nominating Manteca …

— Reach Bob Dunning at [email protected]

Bob Dunning

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