Islander's Blog

Goodman’s Gam

I apologize for not being here last week. My computer had some minor problems and went in the shop. Then, a two day off island appointment combined to make a timely column unlikely. Not only did I miss my weekly fix, there were several readers who were worried I might be ill. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Most of you who know me are aware I’m not a joiner of committees and boards. I made an exception a couple of months back. Shelling out the minimal sum of $20, I became a member of the Nantucket Town Association. You ask why? They’re involved in a couple of important items that I feel are crucial to where we’re heading in the future.

First up is the Wilkes Square idea(s). The NTA is leaning toward a possible non commercial development project of approximately half of the properties. A park, with a civic bent is one idea. Having involvement with the arts is another part of a park area. I’d love to see trees, benches, a bandstand and other people (aka family) oriented activities in this downtown parcel of Nantucket.

The second NTA item that caught my eye was an eyesore that could be turned into a showcase for visitors arriving on island. The Broad Street/Easy Street area is the first sight people spy when disembarking from Steamship Authority vessels. Today, it’s flat out ugly and beat.

A member of the NTA has spent an enormous amount of time and effort drawing up landscapes of what could be a wonderful showcase for all of us. Small green spaces mean so much for us when spread among the asphalt and cement (even brick) infrastructure we live with day to day.

Much of the ideas brought forth in this transformation of the entry point to Nantucket have been vetted with the SSA, and other interested groups. I think most of us are appalled by the appearance of the strip across from the “Strip.” This needs to be more than okay. It could be, with our help.
There are 24 local associations and groups in the Civic League, and the Nantucket Town Association is but one of two dozen. There’s a vast difference in this case. No matter where we live, town is a part of our lives. We have a vested interest in the downtown looking and feeling beautiful.

If you live within a mile and a half of the Pacific National Bank, then you’re within the NTA domain. Towns with green areas attract more visitors and in turn help downtown businesses bottom lines. In turn, we all benefit from having a more attractive place to spend time and relax with our neighbors and friends.

Right after my last column, I noticed the first daffodils blooming (bedraggled though they might be) in the circle at the Rotary. The rain was falling, it was cold and windy, but the sight was uplifting. I thought it was about time for spring, knowing that despite some nice days, we had a ways to go. This past weekend was outstanding, to say the least.

When my computer came back from the shop, there were several hundred emails on it. Other than the same old scams, there’s a new one. Flood insurance is bigger than Nigerians trying to give away millions of dollars. Isn’t it amazing how quickly sleaze balls tumble to the next lowest device to try and steal our money?

Also, there were three emails from people who wanted to be the first to relay the news they’d heard the first spring peepers. The lovely Gail Ellis beat all with her report, having been in Coffin Park and hearing the tiny frogs on March 16th. Following that was Elaine Flynn on the 17th and Jim Gross on the 18th. Thank you, all!

I hear the natives are getting restless at the Westmoor Club. There’s trouble brewing out on Cliff Road. Get ready, there’s more to come in the next week or two.

I relish any comments from readers. My email address is , write me at Box 1263, Nantucket, MA. 02554, or phone 508-228-4325. I don’t mind the occasional insult; though please make it a good one. I hate to be bored.

3 Responses to “Goodman’s Gam”

  1. Kenny B. Says:

    Hi David – et al – Writing this on a blustery, wet, and cold Nantucket Friday morning. Can’t play Paddle Tennis. I could watch birds I suppose. But it’s nice and warm in here. And the Saltmarsh is sponsoring Social Bridge this afternoon and I enjoy that.

    Still a couple of weeks until the Downyflake opens again. I sure do miss that gathering spot. The birders on Sunday do also. We try the airport (too noisy), the Rotary (too spartan), El Rincon (never know what’s actually going to be delivered). Thank goodness we can all descend on Legion Hall for the Palm Sunday breakfast this Sunday.

    And the 2010 Census is happening right now on Nantucket. Lots of folks going out knocking on doors. No one has reached Monomoy yet but I’m sure they will. I hope they can count enough to keep Queen Catherine content with the numbers but that seems unlikely. I’m hearing there are fewer people living here and too many people we like and enjoy are heading away, jobs, getting old, warmer climes.

    All for now. Stay well. — Kenny B.

  2. Greg Garber Says:

    hi David, glad you are back online. not much for this former islander to weigh in on lately, but I feel I must keep pace with the estimable Mr. Blackshaw…..

    the tulips are pushing up here, and I heard peepers on the 19th.

    I have all of my reels cleaned and lubed and spooled, I hear the stripers are in the New Jersey estuaries as I write.

  3. David Says:

    Ken, I too miss the Flake, though the airport noise doesn’t faze me. I’ve tried the Hen House and Brotherhood as well. None have the homey feel I miss. I have to admit that the burgers at the other spots outshine the Downyburger, a minor flaw.

    Hi Greg, No only are there bass in NJ, but some (probably winter overs) have been taken by Fairhaven. I heard that a single bluefish was taken in Raritan Bay last week. Lucky global warming is a myth. **David**

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