Islander's Blog

Goodman’s Gam

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About a month back, I met a man in the Atheneum. He was sitting at the table to the right of the main desk and was speaking to Eileen McGrath as she worked at sorting books. I came by to speak to Eileen for a moment and before I knew it was conversing with the man sitting there. Lo and behold, the man was going around speaking to island folk about the latest Sconset Beach Preservation Fund plan to “fix” the beach along Baxter Road.

Now, the SBPF has a new plan and don’t you worry, it won’t cost us a penny. Well, that’s true as far as the heavy equipment and industrial construction work on the cliff and beaches goes. What isn’t being said is what really matters. Much of the work is slated to be done on our land. That’s correct. We own the beach below the cliff. The SBPF believe that most of us would be happy to allow their heavy machinery to gouge out the beach, then install all sorts of metal and cable, plus textile materials to hold on to a few dozen peoples view.

We’re speaking of a minute group of homeowners with big bucks who believe they have the right to despoil a chunk of what we own for their own purpose. Does anyone remember the dewatering scheme a couple of decades ago? It didn’t work, and removing the materials from the beach took years. I remember the main spokesman at the time telling me that there was no doubt it would work. It didn’t.

Then there was the beach re-nourishment plan. I seem to recall that we, as an island, voted that down by a wide margin. Remember all of the lumber that was washed away and fouled miles of beaches after a storm? If islanders hadn’t scrounged the wayward boards, I doubt the stuff would have been cleaned up. As it was, the trash took months to be taken away. Here we have another situation that reminds me of July and August visitors. We all know that well to do people have to have what they want, when they want it.

In this case, homeowners with big pockets want to trash what used to be a pristine beach and our ownership of the beach be damned. Let’s make sure this ridiculous idea is crushed at Town Meeting. One more thing that irks me about this idea. We have now sat through many hours of the SBPFs ridiculous schemes, and, once again, we’ll have to do so this spring. That’s another reason to hate the SPPF. They’re wasting our time.

Frank Avellino is back in the news, due to his association with Bernie Madoff. The lawyer who is handling the Madoff liquidation is seeking “clawback” money from Mr. Avellino, among others. Unlike many of these so-called investors, Frank allegedly knew this was a Ponzi Scheme and hopefully will be relieved of his ill-gotten gains. I spent the better part of a year working on the Avellino house and never got to know Frank. His wife is very nice and I hope she wasn’t aware of what he was up to.

A follow-up to last week’s comments I made about the flash mob that took place at the Stroll. I have gone online and looked at several other flash mobs. There are a couple of commercial mobs, but most are not. Many of the mobs are where members “freeze” in place. One took place in Grand Central Station. After a minute or two the mob unfroze and went about their business. Onlookers exploded in applause, and everyone seemed energized. No recorded music was used and there weren’t any corporate logos to be seen.

Some other flash mobs where there was music were because the mobsters were singing. Again, there were no logos to be seen. I’m not knocking the people who participated in the Stroll mob. Somehow it seems they were used by nonprofits with corporate logos attached. One last note . . . Why is the Dreamland spending time and money for this, when they have yet to erect anything and are still looking for additional funds to rebuild the theater?

If you’re a Red Sox fan, your holiday gifts came early. Theo Epstein went out and signed Adrian Gonzalez and Carl Crawford to long term contracts. Actually, Gonzalez will be signed long-term shortly. Given how well the Sox did last year, even with three top players injured, this puts them in terrific shape for the upcoming season. Players report for spring training in two months.

At hand, the Patriots have looked unbeatable this season. I’d love to see their last game played at Dallas.
Goodman’s Gam appears weekly in this space and regularly in The Inquirer and Mirror

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