Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Save Yourselves

Last night Gladys was supposed to speak to her own people.

She was finally put on the agenda and given FIVE whole minutes to share with her fellow townspeople her vast knowledge of the casino issue. Gladys was prepared.

She was placed half-way down the agenda and, when she arrived 3 minutes late, didn’t think anything of it. After all, Gladys has been used to sitting through dog complaints and numerous other earth shattering matters in order to get a casino discussion.

So when she arrived, she was dismayed to discover the casino had already been discussed.

Whaaa …?

I caught the eye of a selectman, holding up a paper with my name on it. He smiled, (who wouldn’t smile at Gladys - she's a nice lady). He attempted to get the chairman’s attention. Fifteen minutes later when I finally did, and he saw my name, he rolled his eyes.

He rolled his eyes.

Here I am, working tirelessly on the anti-casino efforts on behalf of the town of Bridgewater, and a man with a Sonny Bono hairdo and false eyelash moustache rolls his eyes at me?

I didn’t think it could get worse than Middleboro, but the proof is on the video. At least in Middleboro, they pretend to act like you are a human being before ignoring you.

I tried to get the chairman's attention, and by this I don't mean that I stood up and started singing It's a Small World After All - no, that's not my style. I was very subtle. And yet... Herb Lemon, chairman of the Board of Selectman, banged the gavel. Apparently he’d decided to move my five minutes to the beginning of the agenda without informing me, though I have been in e-mail contact with him regularly. And when I, very politely, expressed my dismay, he banged the gavel again and again, insisting I was out of order. Folks, Gladys is not the out of order type. She is the hands-folded, waiting-patiently-for-her-turn type. I’ve been doing this for three months in Middleboro.

Someone explained it to me later that evening… Herb Lemon, chairman of the Bridgewater Board of Selectman, is Best Friends Forever with none other than Wayne Perkins. Go figure. And here I was naively thinking that small town politicians were supposed to represent their constituents.

So... I' m still reeling. All this time I'd been under the impression that I'd been living in the free state of Bridgewater, only to discover that it's actually more undemocratic than Middleboro! Bridgewater is not only more poorly mismanaged than our neighbor to the south, I can see that it has more than double the dept of Middleboro for a very good reason. If it weren't for the fact that we lack a Jack Healy brain trust, construction crews would be breaking ground for a casino at this very moment down at the Nip.

I'm not fighting a casino because I have nothing better to do. If a casino comes to Middleboro, people in Bridgewater will be killed and injured by drunk drivers. There will be others who will commit suicide as a result of gambling addiction. Children will be left home alone and in cars in a casino parking lot. The list of social problems continues.

So, save yourselves. Stupidity and despotism are running rampant on the South Shore. Viva la Plympton! Viva la Halfax!

Fortunately, Gladys has this outlet, this blog, read by well more people than were at the Bridgewater Board of Selectman's meeting last night. Can you hear me now, Herb?

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

Glady's - I feel for you - but the truly shocking thing, the thing that just can't be believed:

Wayne Perkins has a friend?

Gladys Kravitz said...

OMG - thank you! I am truly in need of a laugh this morning!

Anonymous said...

No democracy in either town.Maybe President Bush is paying attention and has some troops on the way.This is why we fight wars overseas,yet its happening in our own backyards.Tricky devils.Get all these demorats out of office!

Anonymous said...

I'm not fighting a casino because Quote"I have nothing better to do. If a casino comes to Middleboro, people in Bridgewater will be killed and injured by drunk drivers. There will be others who will commit suicide as a result of gambling addiction. Children will be left home alone and in cars in a casino parking lot. The list of social problems continues."

I just wasted 3 minutes of my precious life to try and find some facts on this casino issue and this is the nonsense I find. No wonder they roll there eyes at you
If you were speaking this way at a meeting. Thank You for helping the Pro Side.

Gladys Kravitz said...

Dear "Precious":

At the very top of my blog is the web site www.casinofacts.org which is jam packed with facts. This is an irreverent blog.

It took you three whole minutes of your life to figure that out?

Mark Belanger said...

Look at the bright side - at least he didn't call you a racist. He sounds pretty reasonable from where I'm sitting ;(

Anonymous said...

That's what is wrong with the "Pro side" Precious - you look in all the wrong places for the wrong answers, convinced you are right even when contradiction stares you in the face - gosh, that sounds like Adam Bond (while talking on cell phone to himself).

Gladys Kravitz said...

Dear Precious,

One more thing... I was so concerned that you were looking for serious information only to find my blog, that I did some checking and guess what? I discovered that you came directly here from the CasinoFacts.org website. Somehow you managed to avoid the vast wealth of information on that site, and went straight to the site news section, dawdling there for a few milliseconds before clicking straight off to my blog where I'm honored to say, you spent 8 minutes not 3.

Precious, I don't think it's very nice of you to try to give my other readers the false impression that you were on a serious search for casino information.

I'll let it go this time.

Anonymous said...

You go girl!!!!

I have lots of friends in Bridgewater....and I will spread the word about this selectman !!! And maybe next election.....he will be OUT!!

Anonymous said...

Oh, God! Gladys, you've wasted Hal Brown's precious time!
After I recovered from laughing about Wayne Perkins' last remaining friend, I started laughing all over envisioning the mustachioed monkey, swinging from the chandelier with his camera!
Bad Glady! Bad Gladys! Don't waste his time any more, you bad girl!

Anonymous said...

"Gladys" you should by now know a few compontents of public meetings.

First, there is an agenda. In the case of "Barking Mad" I assure you that every selectman is barking mad about having to constantly deal with the issue (I certianly was). However, to the people placing the complaint of a dog barking around the clock the problem is very real. Perhaps as real and as important as having a casino plopped into the adjacent town is to you. Like it or not they still are placed on the agenda and they have a right to be under our current town structure.

Second, Once they are placed on the agenda their topic is heard. In the video you placed on this site (which was hillarious -- and I would have loved to have seen what type of dog I would have been) the selectmen were most likely waiting until the time the casino issue was to be heard or a few minutes later. Typically public meetings are conducted that way. In the case of a "hearing" it cannot start before the advertised time.

Third, having now been a spectator of many public meetings I would expect that you know you should be to your meeting on time. Do not try to pass your mistake on....you are too intelligent. Bridgewater's political world is not solely revolving around the casino issue. A plain old mea culpa would be more appropriate.

Also, I have not seen any links from anti casino people to the Study done by the Community Impact Analysis Committee. for your follwers it is http://middleborough.com/General/Impact%20and%20Mitigation%20Report.pdf and can be found at Middleborough.com

I wish people would sign their names when making disparraging comments about our elected town servants. Disagreement is constructive. Venemous attacks are just plain wrong. These elected officials were ELECTED and (sadly) had little or no competition when running for office, do not get paid, and give many of their personal hours and family time to better the Town given the circumstances.

On a final note, I am truly happy and supportive of those who choose to fight the casino, though I disagree with them. I am saddened by the bitter people who try to elevate themselves and their cause feel and sound better by making insulting comments. EVERYONE needs to keep it civil. After all, we are a community and will hopefully remain firends and neighbors after this issue is gone and the next major issue arises.

I challenge you "Gladys" to no longer allow any anonymous comments on this site that are insulting. If people do not dare sign their name then perhaps it should not be said.

I also suggest you and some of your followers run for an office in your (or our) town. Perhaps even an office that has less notoriety than selectman. Become part of the process to effect change from within. You can then have an actual vote on a divsive that may not make the average citizen "barking mad." Then again you may find it easier to complain as opposed to participating and putting yourself "out there" as an easy target.

Sleep well and sweet dreams. I look forward to chatting with you in the future.

Your friend (sincerely),

Lincoln Andrews

p.s. On a joking note, do you think anyone that is not anti casino (or for that matter pro casino) made it to the bottom this reply?

Gladys Kravitz said...

Well Hello Lincoln! I'm so happy you've found your way to my blog, and I'm terribly appreciative of your instructive and articulate comments, despite the fact that we are on opposite sides of the issue. And most especially, for having the courage to use your real name.

I would like to debate a few of the things you have mentioned.

First, I came 3 minutes late to the Bridgewater meeting because I was placed half-way down the agenda. In fact, the meeting was actually started BEFORE the set time to do so, and so I would have been late even if I'd been on time. The reason the agenda was changed without my knowledge, and discussed early is that Bridgewater selectman Mark Oliari has a private agenda with Middleboro, which involves holding my town's hand out in suplication to Middleboro for mitigation, rather than fight for what is best for it's residents, which they know full well I would have spoken of in the five minutes I was to be given. In addtion, they've planned a forum for the residents AFTER the Middleboro town meeting and ONLY with pro-casino intersts. So, Lincoln, you see my dilemma. I was three minutes late to a meeting where I wouldn't be speaking for about half an hour, yet the selectmen didn't keep to this agenda. That's professional? It's democratic to change the agenda at the last minute and start a meeting early without notifiying a speaker? It's appropriate to roll one's eyes at an involved resident? Would you have done such a thing when you were in office. I'd like to think not.

Second, I know that dog complaints are necessary burdens at town hall, but, what you don't uderstand, and I do because I've been to EVERY meeting - is that no one is allowed to SPEAK at the meetings about the casino issue. So the 'facts' or lack of them are played out in the media, and that's where most voters get their information. This is why Gladys has some fun with the selectmen, who've had the stage all this time yet rarely answer our questions.

And yes, I have considered running for selectwoman or possibly another office. I've always thought selectmen in the many towns I've lived in have done a pretty decent job, what with no pay, long hours and plenty of criticism from people like me.

Until now. This is the biggest issue, in my opinion, in my lifetime, with the exception of the Plymouth Nuclear plant, facing the South Shore. And I've seen how it's been handled by several boards in different towns. And it's quiet remarkable how some boards are just so much damn smarter and completely more concerned about their town than are others. How quick some chairman are to use the gavel, and some willing to listen.

So, to your final point, no I don't find it easier to complain. I find it easier to sit on my porch on a summer evening and relax with a good book, safe in the knowledge that my selectmen have more than dollar signs in their eyes when they behold their town and it's citizens.

But since your guys and mine haven't left me with that priviledge or even the remotest sense of security, I forge on with the only medium I know reaches people. (And it does.)

On a personal note, Lincoln, I want to thank you for something. Tonight I had to speak in front of a large group. I was terrifed to be certain, but in my mind I had decided to picture you, as I've seen you at many meetings, speaking up, with all your heart, for what you believe in.

It worked.

Thanks again for your comments, and sweet dreams right back at you!

Your friend and admirer,
Mary Tufts

P.S. I don't want to shut out anonymous comments, Lincoln, I really don't. Aside from the fact that I think they often speak for themselves, I just plain feel that regular people need a place where they can express their personal opinion on this issue. And apparently, it's not going to be town hall.

Anonymous said...

Gladys......Arriving LATE to a Selectmen's meeting is a big NO NO......you should know that! Get yourself on the next agenda, have your ' fifteen minutes of fame' and be done with it. Yes, I find that amazing that another town would have an elected board that wouldn't ' give an inch' to a resident....I thought that only happened in M'boro.......thanks for the enjoyable blogs....

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