Friday, February 13, 2009


  • The municipal employees layoffs we're hearing (and feeling) so much about is not a sign of The Impocalypse. It is, however, a sign of the popular pastime of union-bashing.
  • I have been terrifically lucky to have worked with the unionizers that I have; I have also known union bosses whose only skill is chomping Nicorette gum with their mouths open.
  • Here's how the disaster capitalists are destroying organized labor: by showing that union workers appear selfish and greedy, but don't ever admit that those workers balk at pay cuts because every retailer, restaurateur, real estator, and servicer is continuing to ask for their typical fees and charges, plus whatever cost of living increases occur because everybody else has their hands out.
  • You slow just one sector of the economy by ten percent, and you have angry people on one side of the street. If you slow the entire economy by ten percent, nobody would feel it. But that's impractical.
  • Don't get me wrong: there are people who fall neatly in place on both sides. But I can afford to be a naïf.
  • As with many things on The Beach -- particularly this bit of it -- I need to reconcile this "artists loft" thing with my innate revulsion toward anything real estate.
  • There's an abandoned building in Fall River that everyone says should be a mixed-use residential/performance/retail/studio/manufacturing space. At least, that's what is presented by the Herald News commentarazzi.
  • Some people don't like the concept of "arts overlay districts" (or "arts anything," for that matter) because they prefer to have an artless society and continue to think of The Arts as "Arts and Crafts," specifically popsiclestick napkin holders.
  • Others -- artists, for the most part, or at least members of the Creative Class -- hold a somewhat more palatable belief that artists aren't in love with the above mixed use idea because that would create a Disney World-like "Arts Ghetto" that requires artists to provide the entertainment products, and -- in Fall River's case -- enjoy the only amenities available, which appear to be eighty-three restaurants with outstanding shrimp Mozambique within walking distance and several apple-tini nights.
  • Ernestina (the former Effie M. Morrissey) turned 112 years old on the first of February. According to Paul; J. Brawley, Executive Director:
    All futtocks and top timbers are in place and the planking is well underway. New deck beams are being fashioned and installed and thankfully we have managed to re-use a few of the knees. The project remains on budget and the ship is due to return to New Bedford on Saturday, May 9. Prior to that date, our intention is to make port visits in Gloucester and Boston to show her off.
    I apologize for the belated birthday wish, and I urge and advise anyone to check in at SailErnestina.
  • Also, the use of the term futtocks re-establishes H.M.S. Impossible's rightful epithet, "nautical."
  • That and this world music compilation album from Piranha Musik, with cuts selected by "DJ mps PILOT":The collection grows...
  • Friday the Thirteenth AND Saint Valentine's Day in one post.
  • Join me sometime this weekend as I experiment with "Flash Fiction." What I'm led to believe happens is: an organized gang of penscratchers is given a topic and each has five days to elaborate on it through fictional means. No. Actual means, just not non-fiction. Hence the "Fiction," yeah? They write very quickly and terribly well, and they're going to humor me in my prolix attempts while I'll look to see if it'll fit here in The Journal. Allons-y...

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