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Octopus Sign Controversy: City Forces Man to Remove 'Cartoonish' Store Front

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  • Octopus sign controversy
    (PHOTO:Inland Octopus)
    City accuses man of "sign violations" over painted mural.
By Brittney R. Villalva, Christian Post Reporter
March 27, 2013|4:22 pm

A toy store in Walla Walla, Wash. is drawing up ire after town people have complained about a certain "out of place" octopus.

"SAVE THE ENDANGERED PURPLE OCTOPUS!" writes one user on a Yelp review for the store. The octopus that he is referring to is a giant mural painted on the store façade of Inland Octopus. It features the sea creature in purple splendor.

The toy store's owner, Bob Catsiff, has justified the move by stating that he is simply seeking greatness.

"I have a lofty goal. I am trying to create the greatest toy store in the world. The outside of my store should exemplify that ideal," Castiff wrote in a letter to the City Council.

Catsiff has since accrued over $90,000 in fines as a result of city "sign code" violations. But according to him, he is not the only one to "violate" such a code. To win his fight he has accused the city of "selective" judgment.

"As one of my few remaining options to preserve the mural, I now present the argument that the city is selectively enforcing its sign code," Catsiff wrote in a second open letter to the media. "This is actually a very simple argument: the city has never taken enforcement action against any sign code violator though numerous violations have existed for years."

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The mural was painted in September of 2010 without a city permit. Residents have complained that it is "too cartoonish" and out of place with the rest of the downtown area.

Despite his arguments, Catsiff has lost every court case including one that went up to the Supreme Court. Wednesday has been set as the deadline to remove the store front.

 

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