Holier than thou Cayucos crusaders

December 14, 2019


Editor’s Note: The following series, “Life in Radically Gentrifying Cayucos by the Sea,” to be posted biweekly includes the notes, thoughts, and opinions of an original American voice: author Dell Franklin. 


Happily Homeless Dave, about whom I’ve previously written in this venue, received a citation for an “open container” from the police the other evening.

It is well-known among the boys and gals who hang out along the seawall and in the south lot late afternoons and early evenings that a local element of precious pious locals, terrified Dave will spoil the image of squeaky clean high-end Cayucos and lower the value of their homes just by being a presence, want him extracted from town and sent on his way.

These prickly souls have repeated a mantra of dire fear that their children “might observe Dave and somehow be corrupted” just by the sight of an artisan almost always hard at work with his sculptures, or else leaving his tiny moving quarters unattended while he works as a carpenter.

We don’t know who these people are but we can guess. They are the kind of people who avoid or skitter past the congregation of beer drinkers who usually populate the south lot late afternoons or early evenings–mostly surfers or homies or drifters new to town; and these drifters make a huge effort to be invisible and friendly, are no threat to anybody, are merely trying to survive in a society more and more difficult to survive in.

Of course, history will tell us that the powers that be, urged by the holier-than-thous, always use the local police force to sanitize their little isles of fantasy, where the ghastliness of homelessness and shiftlessness ruins their fantasies and sets them on their warpaths.

Do these locals realize Homeless Dave is a devout, non-hypocritical Christian who regularly goes to church in town and has been helped by its members? That he is a member of the local art association and sells his sculptures in their gallery? That he is self-sufficient and wouldn’t dare ask for a handout; and has gone out of his way to help those homeless people hanging out in town, because he understands what it feels like to be down and out and scorned upon?

But this business with Dave is just a small example of a symptom in all communities, and especially radically gentrified beach communities, where basically they become gated communities without gates.


I left Manhattan Beach in 1986 because the days of a bunch of us “hardcore beach people” could not only not afford to live there anymore, but new laws were being contrived by local politicians—spurred by the onslaught of millionaires—which disallowed just about every one of our freedoms.

I recall driving down there about 15 years later to play basketball at a park complex where I’d held court for 17 years. I was early, and briefly tossed a tennis ball in the adjoining grassy park to my black Lab, who’d been cooped up in my rust-bucket twenty-year old Toyota Tercel for four plus hours. Just as I was finished and headed to my vehicle, a squad car pulled up, lights swirling. A group of women in the play area beside the tennis courts stood to watch the proceedings.

As I stashed my dog in the car, two officers approached me, asked for my driver’s license, insurance, and registration. There had been a complaint of my allowing a dog in the park, which was prohibited. They pointed to a nearby sign on which was written a large number of possible endeavors prohibited in town.

I apologized when I spotted another squad car pull up and an officer quickly jumped out as, possibly, back up.

I informed them I had lived here for 17 years, but hadn’t been back in a decade and was unaware of these strict new laws. I added that if I had known about the new laws, I would never have allowed my dog in the park and affronted the women in the child’s play area.

They looked me over pretty well in my raggedy hoop attire, and decided to take my license to the squad car and run a make on me. They were shocked when I came out clean, the disappointment on their faces obvious. They warned me sternly to never allow my dog in the park again, pointed me toward a dog path, and wished me a good day. I thanked them for their understanding and leniency, realizing I had blossomed into a blatant undesirable in this part of the world.

It will be harder to carry out this kind of tyranny in Cayucos, because we do not have a local police force to enforce the kind of strict laws that go on in a place like Manhattan Beach, where I once rented for $120 a month but now has a median home value of two and a half million.

The crew who drink beer in the south lot best beware, though, and perhaps place a lookout with phone on the corner of D Street and Ocean Avenue to warn the boys to hide their beers when the law lurks around desperate for open containers, anxious to please their pious rat-finks. They’ll be able to spot them coming down the alley along the seawall, so they’d better be on the alert.

These dudes in the south lot are really dangerous people. They play their music, stand around or sit on tail gates and toss balls to their hounds. They laugh a lot and fist bump and high five. A couple of them live in their vans yet are locally employed.

They are friendly to most anybody who walks by. Some of them surf. They are not especially loud, and I’ve never seen any of them gruesomely drunk, only high and happy, a real vicious threat to those rich snobs terrified of their image being spoiled and their children tainted by the sight of a few rascals, utterly harmless, savoring a jocular comradeship that has survived in beach towns for well over a century.

The fantasy of purity must be upheld at all costs!

And Happily Homeless Dave, who works his ass off trying to make enough money to afford his own place, gets to pay a hefty fine. Happy?

While the holier than thou sit back in their mini mansions and sip their precious wine while their kids play computer games.



Your stories aren’t interesting anymore. Time to find another hobby.


“local element of precious pious locals, terrified Dave will spoil the image of squeaky clean high-end Cayucos and lower the value of their homes”…………….”.We don’t know who these people are but we can guess.”……….This whole diatribe is about you Dell and your own paranoia and delusional view of the world. The guy got a ticket for a open container, big deal!! I’ve seen the cops do the same thing to groups of surfer kids after they get out of the water, celebrating the waves they rode!

Maybe you wouldn’t be lamenting the good ole days of old if you were around here pre 86, Dave would of been handcuffed and taken to the hoosegow, just for general principles!!! Maybe you would of seen the riots of 1976, the main reason that they enforce the open container laws along that section of beach.

I don’t think that the folks of Cayucos care one little bit about your buddy Dave, or you for that matter:)


I goggled ‘cayucos riots’ and didn’t find anything and then I giggled ‘1976 riots’ and all I got were some lame riots in London. You got some information about some Caykookus riots in ’76? If you do, come forth because I want to know about them. This could be the deep state at work.


1976 was the Centennial Celebration. after the fireworks there were probably 300 well inebriated folks hanging around afterwards at the (Front Street) Wall. The local Police shut down both ends of Front Street and ordered the crowd to disperse in five minutes! That didn’t go so well, a couple well lubricated local lasses answered the order by launching their beer bottles from 3 rows back, and actually hit the Police cars, game on. Became a melee, watched one guy get thrown in the back of Police car in hand cuffs, spin around and kick out the back window and jump up on the trunk to a cheering crowd!!! Saw another Cop placing a guy in the back seat, at the last second, he twisted, the Cop stumbled and the kid was running down the Beach with his hands cuffed behind his back:) Another cop decided to wack one of the miscreants with his baton, his friends didn’t approve, he ended up in a dumpster!!!

These were just a few scenes from that night, the bottom line was, fireworks were suspended for quite a few years after that incident, as well as open container laws being strictly enforced!!!

Old Salt

As I see it:

This is another article by Dell Franklin that pits the working-class citizens against the Ne’er-do-wells and homeless by choice in society.

Most of the people that Dell Franklin calls “holier-than-thou” had to work 40 hours per week for 30 years or more to buy and own their homes, “mini mansions” as he calls them.

These articles written by Dell Franklin are nothing more than Marxist “CLASS WARFARE” stories praising / justifying the loafers in society over hard working people.

You stated these “rascals savoring a jocular comradeship that has survived in beach towns for well over a century”.

FYI, I grew up in the Beach Towns on the Central Coast during the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s, 80’s, and those “rascals were practically nonexistent in M.B. or Cayucos.

Times have changed !


I don’t think that most of them worked 40 hours a week for 30 years. And if they did, I don’t think they worked hard. Most people only work hard about 2 hours out of an 8 hour day, I don’t care who they are. They probably came into some money and bought something then made other people work for them. Truly hard-working people live in squalor in America, or they get wise and buy a van or a motor home and live in that, and quit working altogether. And I’m just talking about the men. The women I see in Cayucos and Morro Bay, that live in those pseudo-mansions, with the gigantic purses and twelve bracelets around each wrist and windchimes for earrings and layers of makeup plastered on, smelling like French whorehouses, they didn’t do anything but spawn out additional Crusaders, waiting in the wings to take over their yardless leaning towers of greed. Other than that, everyone is good. We are all wonderful people. I don’t want to stereotype in any way shape or form, but I don’t know if I mention it but I live in M*TH**F****N MISSOURI! IT FLOODS HERE EVERY TWO MONTHS!! I’M SICK OF IT AND I WAS RUN OUT OF THAT AREA BY YOU PEOPLE!!!!


Old Salt, what else is there to talk about? We live in smallville. Should Dell write a story about your new sock drawer?


Interestingly, once I got to the 1st sentence of the 4th paragraph, I realized the title of this article was actually describing Mr Franklin. Probably didn’t mean that I suspect. No worries, hypocrisy is a trap we all fall in from time to time. God loves us all, the rich and poor, and whatever in between. I get it. It is harder for all us knuckleheads to love all. Bless your heart.


Describing who? The South Lot Boys or the Cayucan Crusaders? I know for a fact Mr. Franklin is no Crusader, but I also know that he has a house because I am going to live in his attic once I can find a way to get out of F****ING MISSOURI!!! I’m knee-deep in mud and flood!


The author calls them Cayucos “Crusaders”. I wonder if that means that pretty soon they will be lopping off the heads of homeless people like back in the days of the Christian Crusades. The Crusades lasted 300 years and the Christians got rid of a lot of infidels during that time. It was a good time for Christianity.


I think the problem is half the coastal commision and the other half SLO county planning dept ….There is a ton of subdivided properties on the east side of 101 where ocean views and breezes can be enjoyed by all .Some of those subdivided properties have been for sale for at least a few decades …just like. Morro Bay , Cambria , San Simeon etc etc .There is plenty of water locked in those hills for wells .But coastal commission won’t let it be developed and SLO county does not want to provide basic county services ….so it sits blank and idle .. If building fees and land with homes was generating property tax the county would have truckloads of money pouring into the coffer With people spread out and not living in a sardine tin ….. They could enjoy nature and enjoy less of singling out town folks for scorn

Russ J

Homeless people are either mentally ill, addicted to drugs or don’t want to be housed and feel that they can live where they wish. If they live in creek beds or in the fields, they typically defecate or dump their trash near encampments. That waste washes into our oceans or lakes where we swim. When you enable homelessness and glamorize or accept that lifestyle, your not being compassionate to the homeless. They need help, not handouts. They are a blight on our towns and are proliferating because of this authors viewpoint. 40 years ago, if a vagrant was wondering the neighbor, they would be reported and moved along. We have services and beds for them but the majority choose not to use them because they love their drugs.


I take no sides; but they are free to live their lives as they choose.


Those are just the ones you see. You don’t see the families of four that are living in their vehicles or shelters.


No one has the right to tell others how to live. If a person is not physically harming anyone, he/she deserves like any free person, to do as they please, and to be assumed law abiding (and not harassed) until demonstrating otherwise. And no laws should be passed against some people just because certain others don’t like them.


Crusader types do feel they are being harmed. It makes their eyes sore.


You write tolerable prose, oftentimes engaging prose, however I do have a question: How long have you despised prosperity?

Your requiem for an affordable Manhattan Beach rings true, but do you remember riding from PDR to Redondo on the service road before any paved bike paths had been built? THOSE were the sweet Manhattan Beach days, Son. Like the Cayucos you mourn. Desaparacio con las brisas.


Why do you disappear with the breezes. Don’t disappear. We need you on this comment board. Stay out of the wind.


Jesus as far as I have read disliked materialism, ie, excessive prosperity and greed. Capitolists see prosperity in the form of “things” and care less about who have less than them.


You disappear with the breeze?


I’ve worked for some of those people along Studio Drive, and the ones on the hill. I think their problem is in their greed and never-ending thirst for more, more, more, they’ve built their houses too close to each other. People aren’t supposed to live that close to each other. You can reach out and touch your neighbor’s house. It makes them miserable, and their dogs miserable, because a dog needs a yard to play in. So, they have to come into town, or down to the beach to walk their dogs, usually 2 Golden Retrievers, an old one, and a younger replacement on for when the old one dies. Even walking their dogs on the beach they can’t enjoy themselves because their houses are so close together that they haven’t had sex for too long because they are afraid their neighbors will hear them but they probably don’t have time for sex because they are too worried about all the things they own. When they see these South Lot Boys they are probably envious because those South Lot Boys don’t have any possessions to worry about and they have all the room in the world and they probably get a lot more sex. Disclaimer: I am a rabid, foaming-at-the-mouth liberal. I’m probably the greatest Liberal ever to live in SLO but I am stuck in f***ing MISSOURI because of the housing shortage. So, thank you SLO County. I’m very bitter and you have turned me against Conservatives and Retrumplicans forever. Before, I was pretty calm guy. Thanks. See you next flood season.


A quote: It is the task of a good man to help those in misfortune

Sophocles of Athens 496BC – 406BC

This could apply to the heartless materialists who overbuild the coastline; they could leave the south lot boys alone.

This might also apply to many of us


And, BTW, This could apply to you, Slophocles. Move back, abandon Missouri. We miss you and your craftsmanship. Currently in SLO County it is all but hopeless here, with every yay-who with a rattling white pickup and rotted out muffler or aggravating flo-master NON-muffler who believes he is a contractor and tradesman, goofing projects and WHOPPING overcharging in our heated economy. The capable tradesmen are almost extinct here, replaced by the wanna-be’s with no skill and lots of avarice.

Move back, please; Cayucos needs a competent resident philosopher/tradesman.


And live where? Dell Franklin’s attic? I don’t even have a vehicle anymore! I sold it and bought two canoes and a toolshed. I strapped the toolshed to the freakin’ canoes and I live on that thing. Know why? Because it FLOODS here! ALOT! (and my toolshed isn’t the only thing floating in the water … if you know what I mean). And it still hasn’t dried out from last season. Know how they call the Missouri the Big Muddy? Well they should call it the Big Freakin FLOODY! CUZ THAT’S ALL IT DOES HERE!! Thank you SLOCOgreedy’s. Hope the Bay floods the Embarcadero.