I was disturbed to read another Town of North Hempstead meeting turning into a protest over rezoning. That protest is not the first protest to take place before the Town Board. It is becoming a regular occurrence. It has become another indication that our town leaders are not thinking as though they were members of our community.
Where there is a matter that is reasonably expected to upset either our town as a whole or large groups within our town, whether it is required or not, that kind of a matter should be brought before community leaders and before the people for their in put. That should be done before a contract is signed between the town and any third party.
The proposed change in zoning to permit DeJana Industries to erect a cleaning and fueling facility on Shore Road is a mistake. An example of local government without vision.
The playing fields, the beaches, the residential communities, the skilled nursing facility, the church and school plus wetlands and Hempstead Harbor make this project totally unsuitable for the area.
Not mentioned in the most recent excellent front page Port Washington News story was the fact that some other town residents who attended the July 18 Town of North Hempstead meeting opposed development because of its harm to valuable open space and flora and fauna whose home is this habitat. At the public hearing on rezoning the site, an environmental scientist who has been mapping habitats and studying biodiversity with local non-profit PW Green, David Jakim, explained that further studies need to be undertaken on the effects of the development that go beyond the objections of Harbor View residents.
New York City’s Carnegie Hall is the ultimate destination for aspiring singers and instrumentalists to establish their legitimacy as concert artists. For a performer, the approval of Carnegie Hall audiences and critics is a mountain to be climbed. At its apex is a fountain of fame and fortune from which only the successful climbers may drink. And everyone says the acoustics of this historic venue are the best – even some who’ve never been there.
One cold, snowy day in Manhattan, on Fifth Avenue off 55th, a sad-looking old geezer is playing a violin (violin case open at his feet to catch the occasional coins from sympathetic passersby. A sweet young thing in a hurry spots him and asks, “How do I get to Carnegie Hall.” Without missing a beat, he replies, “Practice, practice, practice.”
Last week, I walked into the Port Washington News office on lower Main Street, requesting a photograph that appeared in the July 3 issue. I was greeted by a big smile and an effervescent greeting. The Editor immediately went to the computer and fulfilled my request. The next day, I had my original photograph of the picture. I complimented the Editor on the “new” Port Washington News. It is a major improvement over the “old” Port Washington News. I found the old Port Washington News to be opinionated and slanted! I complimented her on the visual aspect of the photographs being much better. I then called John Owens, the Editor-in-Chief, and complimented him on the tremendous improvement in the “new” Port Washington News. The addition of Howard Blankman to your staff is a tremendous asset. He is very informative and interesting. I cancelled the old Port Washington News subscription many years ago. Keep up the good work!
What also bothered me was upgraded body armor and high powered rifles. If someone is in a store taking something, are the Port police going to show up in the [armored] truck with power rifles? What would President Obama say to this? He is fighting to take guns off the streets.
Home is not a place you go away from; it is a place you come back to. When those words come to mind, I always hear them spoken by the same person, Ezio Pinza in the hit Broadway musical, Fanny (1954). If velvet could sing, it would sound like Pinza. His richly resonant bass voice was as smooth as a baby’s derriere.
For those of you who had not yet seen the light of day in the mid-50s, Pinza was a handsome Metropolitan Opera star who, after 22 years in opera, became a Broadway star in Rodgers and Hammerstein’s South Pacific. In Fanny, Pinza is speaking to his son, who has just returned from five years at sea. His words are a lead-in to a song (Surprise!) entitled Welcome Home (What else?) that Pinza sang with smiling gusto, yet warmly and beseechingly parental. And the thought of it today is apropos because of where this column is going.
If love makes the world go around, music keeps it humming. For these days, music is just about everywhere. Some wake up to it. You hear it when your cell phone powers on. It follows you to elevators — and even to the ladies’ or men’s rooms. At the end of the day, you’re back where you started, in your bedroom. Looking up at you from your bedside table is your clock-radio awaiting instructions. You oblige. Lights out and into bed. Eyes closed and ears open. Music’s sweet sounds softly seduce your psyche. You surrender. You sleep.
But, please don’t get me wrong; that’s an observation not a complaint. Music is my meat. If more people were making music, perhaps there would be fewer people making war. That thought seems to have resonated with Glenn Fleischman and Alan Goodstadt. About six months ago in Port Washington, they opened Bach to Rock, a music school that is unlike any music school in these parts and then some. For students from three to 73, B2R offers an innovative approach to learning and performing pop music, rock, jazz, and Broadway.
On Father’s Day I sat at the breakfast table with my four daughters, facing the whirlwind of their seemingly unconnected conversations, with my occasional attempts to join in gently dismissed at least a half-dozen times by sweet smiles and quiet chuckles. It reminded me of Mark Twain who wrote, “When I was a boy of fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be twenty-one, I was astonished at how much the old man had learned in seven years.” I guess that’s nature’s way. It takes time to truly appreciate parents, especially dads and their wisdom.
To identify the late Jerome Weinstein as a politician is akin to historians identifying Thomas Jefferson as a Virginia farmer. Jefferson, in a mundane sense, was a Virginia farmer. Jerry Weinstein was never a politician.
But how would you know that? You wouldn’t. The emphasis on Jerry’s passing has been on his success in elective office. That accentuates the wrong positive. And as one who knew him for some 50 years, I want to shout out loud that Jerome Weinstein was no mere mortal. In a roundabout way, his life had an impact on your life and mine. Just how and why? Read on.
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