Claremont Insider: Local Events, More Video - Cookie Monster!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Local Events, More Video - Cookie Monster!

The Daily Bulletin carried a blurb with a reminder that Trader Joe's will be opening at Foothill Blvd. and Indian Hill on Friday, April 11th. The grand opening will include some festivities (what, no commemorative bronze plaques?), and begin at 9am.

Don't be surprised if Claremont Mayor Ellen Taylor shows her face to wave the flag and to christen the store and any plaques she can find.

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Speaking of Taylor, she'll be on display in all her crime-fighting glory at tonight's city council meeting at City Hall in the Council Chambers at 225 W. 2nd St. in the Claremont Village. The meeting begins at 6:30pm.

In case you missed out on Mayor Taylor's Girl Scout cookie fit, there's some video of Claremont Cookie Monster giving her explanation of the events after the Girl Scouts came to the council meeting on March 25th and offered up boxes of cookies for all the council members after thanking them politely for the city's support of their recent cookie drive.

The video is Queen Ellen on her best behavior, and, while mildly interesting, is completely at odds with the Courier's and the Girl Scouts' description of the incident (the Courier article, in the Marth 15th edition, was never posted online). With the cameras absent at the time of the offense, Taylor was free to be the threatening, bullying presence she typically is for those unfortunate enough to cross her path.

The key here is that Taylor claims she was only concerned about scouts' safety because she's seen so many accidents at the intersection in front of her husband's law office at 2nd St. and Indian Hill Blvd. That, according to Taylor, was why she wanted the scouts gone.

We think Taylor is lying, given the first-hand accounts in the Courier piece. According to the article, by Tony Krickl, when the Girl Scouts first set up their cookie-selling operation in Taylor's parking lot (after getting permission from one of the other tenants who rent from the Taylors), Queen Ellen sent out a minion to deal with the lowly offenders: "The 2 supervising parents, Pam Garvin and Maya West, were immediately asked by a staff member at Ms. Taylor's office to vacate the lot if they did not have business with the office."

There is no mention of any safety concerns at this point, and from the scouts point of view, the tone appeared threatening and not one of concern for safety. To Taylor, safety was a secondary concern after her primary one: "Get the hell off my property!"

The girls and their leaders moved off of Taylor's property and onto the sidewalk corner. About an hour later Taylor herself came out and threatened to call the police now claiming it was dangerous for them to be selling cookies there because of the potential for car accidents. Yet, according to parent Pam Garvin, Taylor's safety concerns seemed more an afterthought. In the article, Garvin is quoted as saying:

Ms. Taylor first asked if the group had permit from the city to operate at the location, announced she was deputy Mayor of Claremont and threatened to call the police if the Girl Scouts did not cease operations, Ms. Garvin said. She also expressed her feelings that the location was not safe.

Why announce her official title (at the time she was not yet mayor), and why the business about a city permit if safety was an issue? The answer is, of course, it wasn't, you fools! It was Taylor being Taylor, displaying what for her is normal, rude behavior that in anyone else would not be tolerated, but which the town elders condone for some unfathomable reason.

The Krickl article ended with the scouts leaving before the police, called by the "deputy Mayor of Claremont," arrived:

Not wanting a confrontation with the police, the women decided to leave the location, taking with them their girls, cookies, and sour taste in their mouths. By the time the officer arrived, the Girl Scout troop was gone. "If she came out with a smile on her face instead of threatening us and threatening to call the police, we would have been more understanding," [parent Maya] West said. "We are trying to empower young women to become leaders and business people, and I think she offered a negative impression of what that should be."

So, there you have the victim's version of the Taylor Treatment, behavior which Claremont rewards by naming Taylor Mayor on March

Without further ado, here's the video clip from the March 25th council meeting showing Taylor's lame explanation for the cookie incident, complete with commentary from a viewer at home (turn the sound up a bit to hear the comment):

Claremont Cookie Monster - Whatever, Loser!

Notice the lack of apology for her behavior, and the lack of an explanation for why she did not just allow the scouts to use her parking lot rather than forcing them onto the street corner before threatening to call the police. Taylor only says, "I'm sorry that my comments were misconstrued." To translate into English: "I'm sorry that pathetic bunch of idiot scouts made me have to sit up here and say these things."

Taylor also said of her concern for the girls' safety, "I reacted like a mother... a mother hen, perhaps." Perhaps. Or perhaps some other.