I had an interesting experience the other day. At four-thirty in the morning there was a strong rap on the door My daughter went to the door and there was a police officer there. He looked at her when she opened the door and said,
« Your sprinkler is on and your neighbors complained that it was ruining their yard. »
My daughter went and turned it off, relating the visit the next morning to those of us who are heavy sleepers. I never imagined a turned-on sprinkler to be a police problem but either they had little to do or did not know where the turn-off valve was on the side of the house.
Speaking of people sleeping, I called the Avellone campaign three times. They had told me that they wanted to discuss the Lowell political scene with me, so I was just calling to schedule a time. Strangely, I never got a call back, so my first foray into the arms of the Avellone campaign has been short and sweet. Maybe I do not know as much as they thought, I see John McDonough of CityLife to be much more appealing in that regard than I am. He and George Anthes keep up the politica banter all of the time Jim Campinini might be a good person to touch base with, he certainly knows Lowell politics. I might just recommend them to set the Avellone campaign straight. As one conventioneer told me, the man has to become known outside of Wellesley and Worcester. A little visibility might help, but expanding past your circle is paramount.
I am barbecuing and I always burn the beef. I used to have a gas barbecue, but one of them had fire shoot out of the handle and burn me, one of them burnt itself to a crisp on a barbecued chicken regimin, and two propane tanks burst into flames and burned the back of my house down. Fortunately, Chelmsford carpenter Steve Gilchrist braved the winter elements and we eventually got back into our house. But, I went on a no propane diet. I bought a really cool charcoal barbecue grill at Lowe’s and use it almost as often as I used the gas grill. Something about barbecuing in the summer is irresistible.
One thing that some people have noticed is the number of buildings being built by the University. They state that there is a problem because the land is not taxable « anymore. » The fact is that most of the buildings constructed are being constructed on sites that were University-owned before the buildings were ever constructed. And the building at St. Joseph’s was never taxed anyway. So most of the buildings, if not all, had no tax status anyway. Let us just be glad that the Crosspoint Towers are now taxed. That, Target, Lowe’s, Marshall’s, etcetera are all new taxable properties. I believe, but cannot prove, that one of the Market Basket stores has a TIF, but, again, I am not sure Besides, a TIF is an incentive to put your business in Lowell and that can only be a good thing.
My business is trying to get a house ready for wedding traffic by putting in a display of flowers, a new brick sidewalk, and a few other improvements so I have been extremely busy. When putting in a brick patio, buy your stone dust from a reputable dealer. I go to Parson’s Tree Service in Chelmsford because, to the best of my knowledge, local businesses do not sell stone dust. At this time of year it is wise to by annuals, even though their color is only good for the rest of the season. They are very pretty and vibrant and a good buy if you can find them. Mahoney’s still has some.
The « first baby » is the Mayor’s son, and is he cute. He looks alot like both of his parents and when he visited he could not keep his head up so he had a sideways view of the world. My wife made him a present, but we have not given it to him yet. The Mayor is doing well, and I am impressed with the number of youths he has inspired to go into politics. He does not put any pressure on them, they just watch him and lean in that direction. He has been extremely effective in that regard. He is also a good breakfast companion and we have enjoyed many nice meals at Marie’s on Lawrence Street and the Club Diner downtown. Only use cash at both, however.
I am also impressed with the cash only price of gasoline at Haffner’s and the cash or credit price at Hess. I have to get gas in my boat and I am an inveterate card user, so I guess I will head for Hess. When I have cash, I head for Haffner’s. My boat is still not in the water because the purveyors of the dam keep dropping or raising the water level and I cannot find the right time to put the boat in. At this rate I am going to miss the season.
Dick Howe’s Blog seems to be doing well, and I get a lot of information from it. One thing that I admire about Dick is that he is so successful and chooses to remain in Lowell. I peronally believe that you should live where you work. But, of course, that puts my wife in Lawrence and me in Lowell, so there goes that argument. One irate caller to the discussion on the City Life Show said, « What about Brian Martin? » Brian, of course, lives and loves living in Lowell.
I do believe that it would be nice if the City Manager lived in the city, though. My father, as Superintendent of Schools, was required by contract to live in the city and without that experience, I would never have fallen in love with the city as much as I have. You can find anything in the city, and the downtown is full of little shops that are trying to make it. So try to make it down there and check things out.
So, a note to my mowing customers. My son, Rory, is handling the mowing while I work on that wedding. I hope that is OK. To everyone else, I hope this little exchange has been in some way, useful. It is a little bit about everything. No major buildings were torn down this week and that is just fine with me. And, I still want to have the University build that Native American Museum where Manzi Dodge used to operate, across from the Francis Gate.