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TOWN:Mayor shows his weakness

ON THE

August 10, 2006|By STEVE SMITH

My wife will be the first to tell you that I am not the tidiest person she has ever met. Both of the desks I use are cluttered and there are pockets of my belongings stashed all over the house.

At this time, for example, I am having trouble remembering where I stashed some photographs of our new kitten, Kisa.

It's not that I don't want to be neat, it's just that I place a higher priority on other things, such as playing with Kisa.

As with many people with a similar affliction, I will tidy up when the mess gets to be overwhelming.

The mess on the floor of my car reached that point last Saturday, not from trash but from numerous stains on the car's carpet.

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So cleaned the carpet and also cleaned the rest of the interior. Then I realized that the outside needed to be washed.

Paying $10 or more for a car wash is not something I look forward to, but when I don't wash my car myself, I feel better because I know that most carwashes recycle their dirty water.

Before I left for the carwash, my wife told me that the friends and family of Israel Maciel were hosting a car wash on Baker Street in Costa Mesa to help raise money for his funeral.

Maciel, as you may know, was gunned down days earlier by someone in a car with a gun.

The carwash was being held at Ferrari & Maserati of Orange County, at 1425 Baker St. in Costa Mesa, just down the street from where Maciel died.

At the car lot, the fancy cars were moved to make room for the parade of dirty autos. This was not what you'd call a water-wise event, but exceptions can be made in certain cases.

While my son and I waited for our car, I told him why we were there and asked him how much he would donate to the family if money were not an issue.

"Fifty dollars," he said.

Roy has always been generous that way, and it was nice to see that at 13, he still had a big heart.

"You're a nice guy," I replied.

While we were waiting, I wondered what Costa Mesa Mayor Allan Mansoor would think of the sight of 20 or more people who probably could not afford to rent a Maserati, let alone buy one, washing cars all day in the hot sun on a lot where dreams come true.

Not my dream, but a dream for many, I'm sure.

I wondered if he would look at these people and see them as grieving family and friends of Maciel or as the residents of a high concentration of "downscale rental units" and potential visitors to the job centers and soup kitchens that he recently connected with the city's crime.

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