Islander's Blog

Goodman’s Gam

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Say what you will, but this does not feel warm enough to be late June. Our forecast for the upcoming week is temperatures in the low 70s. The past week was in that range, too. When the sun is shining and the heat is up, a breeze is welcome. Lately, there have been spotty clouds, with temperatures barely reaching 70 and more breeze than needed. Well, it is June and considering last summer’s perfect climes, this is somewhat disheartening.

I can’t say I was surprised to see that a bicyclist was hit by a car on Old South Road. Since I don’t know anything more than it took place, I’d like to comment on an either/or problem. So, let’s look at both sides of the issue. What I mean is that both bike riders and drivers often function in a cavalier manner on island streets.

On many occasions, while crossing Lower Orange Street, vehicles haven’t slowed down, despite seeing me (and others) standing in the crosswalk. Those that stop often act as if they’re doing you a favor and wave you across, as if to say “I’m letting you pass through because I’m a good person.” Pedestrians have the right of way, so all they’re doing is obeying the law by “allowing one to pass.” No need for a pat on the back.

Now for the bike-riders. People using two wheels often forget they have to obey the law just as if they were driving a car. If, and I repeat if, the bike-rider merely slowed down and then tried to scoot across the crosswalk without waiting, then it would be difficult to blame the driver of the car.

Both the crosswalk where the bike rider was hit and the crosswalk by Fairgrounds Road are spots where I’ve seen others (and me) screech to a halt as bike-riders fly through there, without coming to a stop. Part of why this takes place is that it’s difficult to see bike-riders when they’re on the path. At Fairgrounds Road, the crosswalk is diagonal to the road, an unusual situation. In both places, cars are moving quickly. That makes for the possibility of decisions in a split second.

Whatever the outcome of this accident, I hope the bike-rider isn’t badly injured and his recovery is swift. No matter which person was at fault, this should send a message to both drivers and bike-riders to look in all directions and always be prepared to stop. If I ran into a bike-rider, my fault or theirs, I’d have a very tough time living with myself afterward.

A couple of additions to the passing of the override for mosquito-control last week. It passed and the money isn’t available for use until 2012. Yes, nothing will happen this summer and next summer people will be drawing up a plan to try and control the pests. In other words, 2013 would be the first summer something might be done. Of course, that would depend on our plan being approved by the state and money being appropriated at Town Meeting to pay for the plan. I’d be interested see how much money it would cost us.

We have to be the luckiest sports fans in the world. Ten years and Boston teams won championships in the NFL, NBA, MLB and now the Bruins in the NHL. The Stanley Cup playoffs were riveting. When the Bruins lost the first two games (at home) to the Montreal Canadiens, I worried this might be a replay of what took place against the Philadelphia Flyers in last year’s playoffs.

The gritty Bruins sucked it up and skated the Canucks into the ice to make our dreams come true. Then, there was the largest victory parade in Beantown, and we’ve had some doozies. Then, the other championship coaches came together and made Bruins coach Claude Julien feel like a member of their group.

The Red Sox are making me (and others) feel tremendous for a couple of reasons. At the start of this season the Sox had (on paper) a mighty team, but they could barely get to .500 for quite a while. Now, we’re seeing exactly what we had expected and it’s wonderful to behold.
– David Goodman’s “Goodman’s Gam” appears weekly in this space and regularly in The Inquirer and Mirror

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