Dear sandy,

That outbreak of red tide we had this year made me very sick and I felt sorry for all those fish that died. When I asked my grandpa where red tide comes from, he told me it was probably a commie plot. What's a "commie" and why would he want to kill all the fish?

-Little Tommy

A commie is like a boogie man. You know who the boogie man is, right? He's this really scary guy waiting in your closet for everyone to go to bed and for things to get real quiet and dark before he JUMPS out and... does a bad imitation of Barry Manilow or something.

Back in the bad old days, everyone was scared of commies. We thought they had nothing better to to than poison our water and corrupt our youth. As it turned out, they were a bunch of wimps who - at the first little sign of economic collapse - faded into the woodwork. Commies were also referred to as "reds", which might have something to do with why your grandpa is trying to blame the red tide on them.

But I think we all know who the real culprit is here - el nino, of course.

Dear Ms. Feet,

Our family is planning a week stay in SPI during the Thanksgiving Holiday. There are approx. 10 of us planning on the trip, but we also have 2 dogs that we would like to be able to bring with us. Do you have any recommendations on a place to stay? We don't care if it is a house or condo!!! Please HELP!! Thank You.

-via the internet



I have received no fewer than 3 e-mails on this topic in the last week or so. Too few to call it a movement, but I think "trend" would be a fair term. It has inspired me to create a web page just for people like us (I also have two dogs that I like to keep close by) and it is posted at

There is not much there... yet. So how about it, readers? If you lease or manage a dog-friendly place, let me know so I can point inquiring dog people your way.

Dear Sandy,

We are currently in the process of buying a plot of land 6.3 miles north of the Convention Center. A deal of a Lifetime! Though we are concerned about the fact that there is no electric/water service in the area. Would you know if there are plans in the near future to provide those services? For the time being , it will be our place to camp (Roughing it out).

How safe is it up there at night?

Also, I would like get in touch with folks that have purchased property up north of town who plan to build there in the future.


Ah... a real honest to goodness modern day pioneer.

I could point out that our forefathers and mothers who settled the wild and woolly west didn't need no stinkin' electricity and water . And safety? They might've wished all they had to contend with was the occasional malnourished coyote, blissed-out naked sun worshiper or rogue beach tower...

I think it is pretty much generally assumed that there will eventually be services out there. Truth is, no one really knows how long it will take for the town and all of its comforts to creep that far north... but I wouldn't hold my breath.

And I would suggest that you might be very careful about what you leave unattended out there.

There are five (5) ways to submit your questions/comments for future Ask Sandy columns: In person; by phone (761-6222) or fax (761-8930); the US Postal System (box 2694,spi,78597) and E-mail: ( Visit my web-site ( for tips on sandcastling, contest info, recent Ask Sandy columns, and my reviews of local businesses.

See some more sandy feet columns