When I was a young man in the 1940s and 1950s, we celebrated Feb. 12 as Abraham Lincoln’s birthday and Feb. 22 as George Washington’s day of birth. Somewhere along the way, we have scrunched (is that a word?) the two together.
Sometimes birding is memorable not just because of the birds but also because of the place where they were seen. The two can be inseparable in enhancing the experience of birding. Last winter in Florida that happened at three favorite birding haunts.
Early in February temperatures are averaging 15-20 degrees below their usual 70s. In the late afternoon I’m walking Whitney Beach on Longboat Key. A man is wearing fleece and a large watch cap. Is this Maine or Florida?
The Middle East is aflame!
Snow has blanketed the country!
Heating bills are heading for the roof!
What can we do about it?
Let’s have a Super Bowl Party!
It’s 2011 – by now you have had to figure out that when living on Long Island you have to be loud. Sometimes the loudness will come from yelling over the honking horns and traffic on the Long Island Expressway. Sometimes the loudness will come from singing along with the national anthem at a Long Island Ducks or New York Islanders game. Sometimes the loudness will come from shouting your order of fruit and vegetables at a local farmers market that’s bustling with hundreds of Long Islanders.
Bulletin: “Snow is coming up the East Coast!”
It’s another Nor’easter!
12 inches of snow!
Will the NYC airports be closed?
(Editor’s Note: Since Stanley Greenberg is on vacation this week, in this issue we present an encore of a column that originally ran on Jan. 28, 2005.) The winter of 1948 prepared me for the future. The snowfall that winter was 24 inches and the East Bronx that I lived in came to a definite standstill. Life to me, a 14-year-old, was a series of basketball and stickball games with a little bit of junior high school thrown in. The snow was interfering with my athletic career.
Ed Mangano has been in office over one year now.
Under his leadership, the County’s bond rating has been downgraded for the first time in over a decade. Overtime is through the roof. He has handed out millions in political patronage jobs and legal fees. He has failed to develop a comprehensive plan to address the effects of the nation’s worst economic crisis on Nassau County’s budget, and each week we are learning of a new breakdown in one of the County’s many departments.
I knew Nassau County’s finances were bad but I never knew how bad until I became County Executive in January 2010.
I soon learned I had inherited from Tom Suozzi a 2010 budget with a $133 million deficit, that spending was wasteful and out of control, that Suozzi had given the public employee unions extravagant labor contracts, that these contracts prevented the county from laying off employees – even in difficult economic times, that borrowing was commonplace – driving the county further and further into debt each year, and that – while the 2010 budget was bad – Suozzi’s spending and union giveaways would drive future budgets even deeper into debt.
About 10 years ago, my son Gregg told me about a book by Mordecai Richler, the Montreal-Canadian author, that I should read. It was about a Montreal, Jewish curmudgeon (like me) who was a fictionalized antihero in the novel. I read the book and it was all I expected. Great!
The hero, Barney Panofsky, is setting the world straight on his own version of his life. Barney was married three times, and his humorous depictions of each wife were more than hilarious. Barney is a regular guy and a fanatical hockey fan (very Canadian) who roots for the Montreal Canadiens. He is a cigar-smoking whiskey drinker and he abhors phony people. Barney is not an easy guy to get along with, but his criticisms of acquaintances are right on target.
As Lorraine and I stood shivering at 7 a.m. on a Sunday morning on the Hicksville LIRR platform, we readied ourselves for our daunting task.
We were on our way to the 10th Annual New York Times Arts and Leisure Weekend. The Times building at 242 West 41st Street was our final destination. We traveled to see Will Shortz, the world’s famed “puzzle master.”
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