A continuing tale of life in the boonies

No. 109

Election round-up

The migrating buffalo herd of presidential candidates that thundered through New Hampshire has now vanished into the distance. Battered placards stick out of snow banks as evidence of the passing furor, and election results remain to be examined like hoofprints or droppings.

Mr. Lyndon Larouche, after the helpful exposure given to his views in this column, did manage to attract four votes. This was more than the combined tally of Van Petten Thorpe, Zucker, Kirk, Denneril, Sagan, Koczak, Marra, Di Donato and Martin-Trigona, and it is expected that at least a few of these lesser luminaries may drop out of the race. One can only hanker to meet such dogged grass-roots supporters as Lyndon's, and discuss their hopes and fears for the exploration of Mars in the light of a stronger showing at the polls than was predicted.

Unfortunately, none of this elite belong to Trudy Pence's Senior Lunch Program - the general feeling among this section of the citizenry is that Mars is not for them. They tend to believe that the time involved in rocket travel there and back may extend beyond their alloted span. One must seek further afield for Larouchites, perhaps among the Club Med type voter, the sort of sophisticate who is bored with Peru and Sikkim, and who can grasp the scientific concept of one G per second acceleration.

But if Lyndon is exalted with his showing, Mr. John Fitch is a disappointed man, now that the results are analyzed. Despite a massive publicity campaign in Farmington Corner concerning his skill as a lawmaker (most recently, his introduction of a $75 fine for dogs eating humans), the Animal Control Officer only received one vote for vice president of the United States. Indicating that he had been ready to accept that great mantle of responsibility, Fitch issued a statement saying that the people of New Hampshire had let a golden opportunity slip away.

Political advertising also held its share of surprises. Many people were astonished to observe a Mike Dukakis placard on Mouse Hagar's lawn, knowing that the former is firmly anti-nuclear power station, and that the latter has worked at the Seabrook plant for many years. Perhaps there could be a grain of truth to the rumor that the Dukakis sign was stuck there by a shadowy group of pranksters who emerged from a bar on Mechanic Street. But who stole Paul Turner's Jack Kemp poster? A Democratic member of his household, perhaps. And who wiped out two Paul Simon signs outside of Manny Krasner's office? Hmm. Things were sure exciting around here last week. It's just as well that the action has moved on.

Personal Protest

"No taxation without representation" was the cry that fired the American Revolution, and inspires memories of the Boston Tea Party and all that ensued. Unjust tyranny was overthrown, elected representatives ruled the people, and taxes were once more installed. However minor pockets of injustice remain, and to highlight the fact that I, a property tax (not to mention income tax) payer, have not the right to vote at local elections, I hereby declare my intention, on town polling day, to cast a symbolic tea bag into the River Cocheco, from the bridge on South Main Street at the stroke of noon, with rain date to be the next day. Though probably liable to arrest for being in contravention of a Clean Water Act, I invite other disenfranchised taxpayers to join the throng. No taxation without representation shall be our cry as we are marched in chains from the banks of fair Cocheco to (Cont. on P. 94).

Softball News

At a meeting last week, Girls' Little League Softball coaches appointed Zeke Ghareeb and Jean Pitz to head the organization for the 1988 season. Plans were discussed for the erection of a small building in Fernald Park for the storage of equipment and to double as a concession stand. It was decided to ask the approval of the Board of Selectmen before this idea was explored further.

The Very Next Night

Searching the deed for Fernald Park, I discovered no clause that frowned upon the erection of a building...there was a provision, though, that if the park were not improved and maintained for recreational purposes, it would revert to the heirs of the original donor.

At the Selectmen's Meeting, on the following evening, I informed Biff and Willis (John Scruton was down with flu) of the Softball Committee's suggestion, and conveyed their intention to supply both materials and labor, for this project.

Mr. Fitch, in the public benches, then spoke against the idea, saying that the park was intended for use by all of the townspeople, and not a section with a particular interest.

I pointed out that since I had come to town, I had installed soccer goals in the park, a jumping pit, three horseshoe pits and a volleyball court. There was a now children's Summer Program, an annual Family Day, and Business Association Band Concerts. All of these programs, and more besides would derive benefit from a small building, and I saw no evidence of any one group behaving in a selfish or dominating manner. Everyone, with the exception of the F.B.A., was under Parks and Recreation and any funds generated would be utilized to "maintain and improve" the park for recreational purposes.

The selectmen expressed preliminary approval for the idea, stating that they were interested in the quality of construction and the actual siting of the building. The softball committee will now explore options and costs, before seeking final permission from the board. Henry Sabine, the man responsible for the present beautiful condition of Fernald Park, will also be sought for his opinion.

Next Week: The Great Farmington Ice Rink Saga...Let 'em skate in '88.

Feb. 23, 1988

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