Monday, March 10, 2014

Hot Hermosan Topics

There are a couple of hot topics dominating the local news here. As you know, I love a bit of local news, so I have enjoyed reading the debates.

Hot topic number one is whether the person who chalks messages like the one shown below along the strand is an artist, a public nuisance, or an inspiration. Should she be given the keys to the city, or banned for life? I'll steer clear of politics here and declare myself neutral.
 But I will say it's nice to live somewhere where the local nuisance is something so benign.

The other hot topic is less approachable. It's about whether the E&B oil company should be allowed to drill in Hermosa. A lot of people say no, and say so by festooning their house with one of these signs:

Hermosa, by the way, means beautiful. But it also is a byword for the local beachy, surfy, vaguely alternative way of life. So the signs have a double meaning: protect the natural beauty of Hermosa, and keep its funky spirit alive too.

Unsure whether we too should be flying a 'Keep Hermosa Hermosa' flag or not, TLOML and I went to City Hall this weekend to find out more. I skim read the Executive Summary of three telephone directory sized reports on Environmental Impact, Cost Benefit Analysis, and Health Impact. What it apparently boils down to is that the city will make a huge amount of money if the drilling goes ahead. But it will also smell like ass and probably become a toxic place to live in the process.

I must admit my ears pricked up when I heard that house prices would take a hit locally if the drilling goes ahead - maybe we can afford to buy here before I turn 60! Then I decided that I wouldn't like to live next to a dirty, smelly, noisy oil 'recovery' yard - even in Hermosa.

I don't think we're going to buy the sign, for it would spoil the Sugar Cube's pleasing aesthetic. But I will be buying a t-shirt and a cap at least.

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