Islander's Blog

Goodman’s Gam

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Having spent an hour walking around Main Street on Halloween, I was struck by how elaborate many of the costumes were. Not the children’s get-ups, but those of the parents and other adults. This was akin to arrested development in my mind. Perhaps it’s just my age. I don’t recall adults dressing up for Halloween when I was a kid. It’s another thing to go to a costume party as an adult.

There were children with costumes that showed how much thought and effort had gone into them. The two families that were my favorites were a mother, father and a child who all had matching outfits. One troika was dressed like Dalmatians with Cruella DeVille and the other were either zebras or white tigers. I appreciated the family approach they had taken.

Several Main Street businesses were supplying trick or treaters with bowls of candy set out on their counter. Nantucket Pharmacy had one of their executives out on the sidewalk giving away treats. This entire evening impressed me far more than the Christmas Stroll. At least it was comprised of people who live here, and it was real, not an invented holiday. Money had nothing to do with the celebration.

Last week I mentioned the new façade of the Federal Street post office. Since then one of the employees explained that the railing is the original. That still doesn’t explain the large overhang on the left side of it. Then, I had a post from a reader asking why the front door isn’t handicapped accessible.

Today (Tuesday) I asked another post office employee about the problem with the front door. He didn’t have a clue as to what was happening with it. Then, I tried to speak to the postmaster. The employee said he wasn’t there. So I asked when he would return. His reply was: “maybe tomorrow.” Pretty reassuring when the staff doesn’t know where the boss is or when he’ll return.

The Sconset Post Office may not be with us much longer. Their hours have been cut back to the point where the desk is (wo)manned a little more than half of each day. Knocking down the service will make it more likely that east-end residents will change to a town P.O. box. Once that begins to happen, the USPS will have an easier time shutting down the Sconset post office for good.

Maybe it’s a good thing that the Nantucket Whalers aren’t going to be playing their annual football game with Martha’s Vineyard. Last week the “Grapes” had to cancel a scheduled game with Cape Cod Tech, due to about 10 members from the Vineyard with H1N1 (swine flu) symptoms. I doubt Nantucket will escape unscathed from this flu pandemic, but the later it comes here, the better for all of us.

Today at noon the Food for Thought series will present Charles Gifford, representing “Waste Options” (i.e. the dump). It takes place in the Whaling Museum and is free. Bring your lunch while hearing about our lovely landfill.

The news about the Wampanoag tribe trying to stave off the wind turbines in Nantucket Sound sounds good to me. I’m getting tired of newspaper articles saying that this is about rich people saying NIMBY. There are plenty of normal residents who are dead set against this project.

There are several problems with the windmills, and many of them have nothing to do with which door they’re seen from. The developer may sell the electricity to whomever he likes. It won’t necessarily come to our shores. The power goes to the highest bidder.

I believe the towers may very well impact fishing, and for those who say there aren’t fish in that area, I beg to differ. I have fished in the area several times, catching blues, striped bass and fluke. I’d be lying if I said it was the best fishing spot around here, but anywhere there are living creatures they need to be protected.

The developer is likely to “flip” the project once it’s approved. He is not an environmentalist, he’s a businessman. If it must be run as a business, let’s have a utility company such as NSTAR do it. I trust their expertise more than that of a “for-profit” developer. Remember, the developer tried (and failed) to construct a fossil fuel plant to generate electricity in South Boston.

We now have a new water tower on the island horizon. It’s beautiful, if you appreciate mushroom-shaped infrastructure. Unfortunately it’s needed, given the growth on our water-hungry sandbar. Eventually it’ll blend in and be relatively benign. I remember using the black water tower by Washing Pond as a landmark when fishing from my boat. Of course, that was before we had GPS.

The town clerk has informed me that November is “National Preservation Month,” and she will be hosting an open house to show off some of her office’s historic items. The open house is to take place on Friday, Nov. 13, from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Catherine Stover and her able assistants would like to show you around the items they caretake.

The New York Yankees are now World Series champions after finishing off the Philadelphia Phillies four games to two last evening. After all, the Bronx Bombers were the finest team money could buy. This season they played like a team, instead of a group of well-paid businessmen. Chase Utley was the bright spot for the Phillies. I wish he’d hit one more home run and beaten Reggie’s record.

The Interfaith Harvest Fair will take place on Saturday, November. 7 from 9:30 a.m.-2 p.m. All of the local congregations will have tables with gift items, home furnishings and other goodies. It’s a chance to start shopping for the holidays.

For readers who choose not to post their thoughts below, I may be reached at (508)228-4325, or e-mailed at My P.O. Box is 1263.
– Goodman’s Gam appears weekly at and monthly in The Inquirer and Mirror.

5 Responses to “Goodman’s Gam”

  1. Greg Garber Says:

    David, I’ve trolled over Horseshoe Shoal many a time; there are some big blues out there! I remember the first time I saw the, shall we say, “HDC ridge pole” they put out there to demonstrate the height of the turbines; wasn’t sure what to think. I firmly believe in wind power, but any Nantucket-related turbines ought to be off the South Shore. I think the developer wants the Sound because it’s less expensive engineering-wise…?

  2. David Says:

    It is cheaper, plus it’s very likely he’ll “flip” it once approved. **David**

  3. Don Says:

    uhm….just think when the government gets a chance to run health care, it will be just like going to the post Office with the same amount of blank stairs and helpful interaction……

  4. David Says:

    In this case it’s stares unless you’re speaking of the front entrance to the PO. Medicaid isn’t perfect, but millions of Americans couldn’t make it without “government health care.” I’d like to see more, because paying for Blue X is breaking me. **David**

  5. Greg Garber Says:

    I struggle with the health care issue. I remember standing with you, David, in Cheryl Bartlett’s living room, listening to Phil Johnston touting the “single-payer” method. Yet there are Canadians presently sneaking into New York State to get surgeries that their socialist government won’t approve. And yet further, I can’t approve of a health care system that is tied to employment, like ours…..

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