#122: Poulsbo, WA 8/2/17

There was no shortage of eyebrow-raising announcements in Poulsbo.

Mayor Becky Erickson set the bar ever-so-slightly off the ground with her unorthodox but low-key warning that “after we leave here, we’re gonna go to the third floor. A conference room setting is a little more conducive to an active conversation.”

Fair enough. A change of venue is good for the circulatory system. But the good vibes instantly dissipated as Council Member Gary Nystul flagrantly stoked an intra-governmental rivalry.

“It’s my privilege once a year to point out to my two Navy associates–Warrant Officer [Council Member Jim] Henry and Commander [Council Member Kenneth] Thomas–that August 4 is the Coast Guard birthday.”

He smirked and prepared to rub in his superiority. “Occasionally the Navy doesn’t follow our directions. One day in Hawaii they didn’t follow our directions right out of the shipyard. They put it into a reef!”

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Who among us hasn’t crashed a battleship into a reef?

The mayor quickly interjected. “You’re walking on dangerous ground, Mr. Nystul! Very dangerous ground.”

“Choppy waters” would have been the more appropriate image, but point taken.

Speaking of danger, quick: cue the Musgrove!

“When an earthquake or something happens is NOT the time to figure out: where do I get food for Fluffy?” Council Member David Musgrove insisted. He gestured to an emergency-preparedness handout decorated with a pensive-looking cat.

“It’s like taking care of an elderly parent. You need to do the same stuff.” (Note to self: stock up on cat food for grandma.)

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Cat sold separately

But if residents didn’t have time to prepare themselves for a disaster, Council Member Musgrove offered a logical alternative. “Tomorrow, 10:30 a.m., there’s a walk-through of the Poulsbo cemetery.”

Council Member Connie Lord struck a compromise between death and doomsday prep. “The mayor has opened up city hall as a cooling station,” she announced helpfully.

Mayor Erickson nodded. “The council chamber’s open. There’s bottled water in the fridge.” After thinking a second, she added, “bring a book. There’s nothing particularly exciting going on in here.”

However, the mayor was having a hard time keeping her story straight. Because not two minutes later, she revealed this HIGHLY exciting event:

“This coming Tuesday, I’m having ‘kitty hall’ here,” she bragged. “The Kitsap Humane Society and I are going to have a whole bunch of kitties/kittens/cats for adoption. So if you’re interested in a new feline furry friend, we’ll be out there.”

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When you pick up your cat, get enough food to last through the earthquake.

The final news item came from Council Member Ed Henry and it was a whopper.

“In our codes, self-storage and mini-storage is allowed in the commercial zone,” he informed the council solemnly. “Is the council interested in putting self-storage in those other zones?”

He glanced around. “It is a timely matter.”

“We appear to be having a LOT of interest about putting self-storage along [highway] 305,” the mayor acknowledged.

“We have very limited space if we want to keep Poulsbo Pouslbo,” Henry fretted. “Tight and constricted.”

Mayor Erickson agreed to look into it. But immediately, she worriedly turned to the clerk as she remembered that everyone needed to trek to the upstairs conference room.

“Rhiannon, how are we going to do this? We haven’t done this before.”

The clerk promptly replied, “I see us going upstairs and continue our audio recording up there.”

With that, the cameras went dark and the citizens who came for the cooling station pulled out their books.

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