Thursday, 24 April 2014 09:14
Spring is a time of rebirth, so it’s no surprise we celebrate. These holidays, whether true “holy days” or secular commemorations, tend to be marked by feasting and gifting. Persians go all-out for Nowruz, literally “new day,” with intense spring cleanings, visits to friends and family, and a feast. Japanese picnic in droves under the cherry blossoms—often in cemetaries—for hana matsuri. Christians this week mark the rebirth of Jesus Christ on Easter. Last week Jews gathered for Passover.
Many of these springtime holidays have a dark side—or at the very least a dark undercurrent. Behind the bunny rabbits (chocolate and furry), fluffy yellow chicks and prettily colored eggs lies a cruel and unjust death. Passover, too, marks a rebirth for the Jewish people; this most deadly plague, which “passed over” Jewish homes, finally persuaded Pharaoh to free the Israelites to pursue their destiny. (Let’s be thankful that human sacrifice has gone out of style with both God and man.) Even those Japanese picnics are traditionally a time to contemplate the ephemeral nature of life as you watch spring’s first light pink petals fall like snowflakes.
Truth is, springtime celebrations mark not life but its cycle, which must of necessity include death. If we were immortal, we wouldn’t take the same joy in being (not to mention the planet would be really crowded). The same dying and decay that make us sad are what make life joyful and precious.
Friday, 21 November 2014 00:00
At the eleventh hour on the eleventh day of the eleventh month, residents and community members joined with the Floral Park American Legion to honor veterans at the annual Veteran’s Day ceremonies at Memorial Park, following a march down Tulip Avenue to the park with the members of the veterans of the Legion post, American Legion Auxiliary members, Sons of the American Legion, Boy and Cub Scouts from Troops 482 and 678 and local officials.
During the ceremony, a plaque was dedicated in memory of General Kazimierz Pulaski and others of Polish heritage who have served in the U.S. military. The plaque dedication was led by members of the Polish American Congress, Long Island Division, President Grzegorz Worma and Honorary President Richard Brzozowski. An invocation was delivered by Father Peter Rozek of St. Hedwig Church, followed by a POW-MIA ceremony by Post 334 Vice Commander Matthew Cacciatore.
Thursday, 20 November 2014 00:00
While parking around Long Island Rail Road train stations is typically a challenge, even on a regular work day, the holidays create more of a struggle for commuters in search of parking spots. LIRR spokesman Salvatore Arena said that ridership between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day increases by at least 10 percent; last year it was by 12 percent. Though the MTA is adding more trains to the schedule, that doesn’t ease the parking situation, which is operated not by the LIRR, but by individual municipalities in each town.
“Every station is different,” Arena said. “A good part of our parking is in the hands of the locality. They set the rules essentially.”