Islander's Blog

Goodman’s Gam

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As much as I appreciate the Land Back and all they’ve done for our overgrown sand dune, there is no way the town should transfer our beaches to them. At some future time, our beliefs may differ from theirs. Then we’d be in no position for the majority of island voters to control our sandy destiny. We already gave away the dump, and that was a monumental mistake. I certainly don’t equate the Land Banks operations with the questionable way our landfill is, but . . .

Mid December has brought us a pretty fair dose of winter weather. While Nantucket is windy all year, this past month has been extreme, compared to what we’re used to. Over the course of most winters, a monthly blow of 40 to 50 miles an hour is expected. Lately there were at least three instances when the gusts exceeded the half-century mark.

Our precipitation has made freshwater and brackish pond levels a good foot above normal. Then, the puddles on local roads were quite deep in many spots. Friendship Lake was almost two feet deep the other evening when I traversed it. At one point I wondered whether my waders would be required. Snow is the one predicament we haven’t had to face. Yet.

Lester, the blue tick coonhound whom the Board of Selectmen banished from the island, received a mention in the Sunday Boston Globe. You may remember Lester as the (attack) dog on Liberty Street whose owners maimed him by removing his voice box. The mention came to light because regulations are being considered to change the commonwealth’s laws concerning dangerous-dog ordinances.

We all know the saying that there are no bad dogs, only bad owners, though certain breeds are more aggressive than others. Some types need more training or attention to acclimate to humans and other animals.

The two other dogs mentioned in the Globe piece were an English mastiff and a Belgian malinois. A malinois is very similar to a German shepherd. The point was made (by an expert on canine behavior) that German shepherds are “wonderful with family members, but are often mistrusting of unfamiliar people.” This reminds me of an old joke. What’s the difference between a mother and a pit bull? Eventually, the pit bull lets go.

A couple of weeks back I was told that a former selectman is about to throw his hat into the ring come spring. Rather than put his alliterative name out, I heard (off the record) that he has the endorsement of the chair of the BOS. Oh, and by the way, he ran against the chair in his last try at the BOS. It’s easy to see why he gets a pat on the back. The old chestnut goes, “the enemy of my enemy is my friend.”

So far, it appears that the two incumbent members of the BOS, Patty Roggeveen and Allen Reinhard are both going back for their second bite of the apple. Ms. Roggeveen is the most prepared member I’ve seen since Bernie Grossman, while Allen is the odd man out. I say that in the nicest possible way. With Allen there’s nothing but neutrality. He weighs the facts and votes his mind. I’d like to see more of both Patty’s preparedness combined with Allen’s impartiality.

I went off-island for a couple of days this week. Boston was nice on Tuesday, with warm temps, although the following day was cold and blustery. On the way home, I spent a couple of hours at the mall in Hyannis. Unlike other times when it’s close to Christmas, the mall was half full (or was it half empty?). I spotted a total of six Nantucket people in the place.

There’s no question that business is off on the mainland. It looked as if most of the items were tacky, marked up to be sold at a “discount.” I saw nothing appealing to buy. This is the best reason to shop locally. I’d prefer to buy a few meaningful gifts than a bunch of crummy “inexpensive” items. It was interesting to note there were at least a half-dozen shops selling cell phones and various accessories. Apparently, cell covers with wild designs or electric colors are very popular this year.

The only wild color that has my rapt attention is green. Celtic green, that is. The masters of the Garden parquet are on a roll, and look as though they have a chance to go all the way this season. Of course, having said those words, the jinx is in.

On the baseball front, it’s only a little more than three months until the Red Sox will again convene for spring training. Picking up John Lackey and Mike Cameron has already given me hope for the upcoming summer. The possibility of losing Mike Lowell makes me very sad. He’s a star on and off the field.

Last Sunday I had dinner with a friend. Looking through the restaurant guide it quickly became obvious there were few restaurants open on that day of the week. We went to Centre Street Bistro, a spot I used to frequent. Trying to stay out of town during the high season, I hadn’t been there for a while. The food and service were as fine as ever. Not only that, the check didn’t inspire sticker shock.
Goodman’s Gam appears weekly in this space and monthly in The Inquirer and Mirror.

3 Responses to “Goodman’s Gam”

  1. Steve Murphy Says:

    David: Salutations of the season and best wishes for a happy and healthy new year! Now that the small house at 3 Sheep’s Pond Road has gone into the Atlantic isn’t it about time that the Town started taking a look at the house east of 3 Sheep’s Pond Road that you can see prominently sticking out into the ocean in the picture of the house in the water. Those homeowners have created their own penninsula and it is now starting to cause problems for those houses west down the beach. What do you think? Best, Steve Murphy

  2. Greg Garber Says:

    David, is the proposed transfer budget driven? That is, manage the beaches with real estate transfer fees rather than the tax base?

    Also, I heard SHAB is opposed to slot limits on stripers? The room must have been packed with boaters and commercial wire liners, as opposed to surf casters…..

  3. David Says:

    Steve, There is no doubt in my mind that Ratner’s Peninsula has helped scour the beach on either side of it. How he got away with this is beyond me.

    Greg, This proposal is simply that. I’m not sure what’s going to happen, or who pays what. As for the SHAB meeting, it was mostly commercials guys, also charter captains. Their biggest concern is opening up the EEZ (3 mile limit) in order to take bigger fish. Recreational fishermen never show up to these meetings, they just bitch about the regs after the fact.

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