Monthly Archives: octobre 2013


This is not a problem that I usually have. I am trying to determine if I have anything to write about so I will just take a stab and hopefully something of interest will prevail. If you checked yesterday, I would say no, there was nothing, because I was creating an extra kitchen cabinet from an idea my wife saw in Pinterest. It took two days to build and works well, and, in addition, it is fairly nondescript and does not take up much room in the kitchen. It is designed to roll on casters and go between the refrigerator wall and the side of the refrigerator and it does just what it was designed to do. It holds a ton of kitchen cans and bottles, flour, and a list of other things. Pinterest is available on-line and has a great many unique ideas. So it was worth it.

I realized over the weekend that we have four cats, which is more than enough. They have all been fixed now. It took awhile but is definitely worth it. Our dog is fixed, has her shots, and is a rescue dog, which is a dog that is proably going to be euthenanized. So, I guess we saved one.

Dick Howe, Jr. is amazing to me. He runs a large office, has a wonderful wife, a Harvard graduate for a son (who single-handedly garnered points for his, Andrew’s, handling of Elizabeth Warren’s campaign in this area), a new book out, and he does the cemetery tours. Those tours are fascinating and I wish I could do the part around the Tsongas plots, as there is quite a bit of history over there too, and it has virtually nothing to do with Paul Tsongas. T— and I took the St. Patrick’s tour and there was Dick, apparently anxious to learn a few things about the Irish in Lowell. I am kind of busy, especially this time of year, but I have nothing on Dick. I am helping out in a few campaigns, but have not really done too much with that type of activity since the Markey campaign.

My picks for Council are, not in any order:

Rita Mercier
Stacie Hargis
Joe Mendonca
Bill Martin
Veasna Nuon
Marty Lorrey
Edward Kennedy
Eric Gishier
Jim Milinazzo

That does not reflect who will win, just who I want to win. I am sure this will be an interesting campaign and, to quote St. Paul « I have finished the race, » is something that they can all look back on and take a great deal of pride in.

My picks for School Committee are, again, not in any order;

Steve Gendron
Mrs. Sitawich
David Conway
Mr. Leary

Business is good. There are alot of leaves out there, and we try to keep our operation small. However, if it is like other years, I will be active right until Christmas, depending upon the snow situation. Speaking of snow, I am cutting back on the number of people I will do the snowblowing for, as too many just means that the job does not get done right.

Well, I properly stated that the number of topics for tonight was a bit negligible. I am sure that I did not disappoint. I will be going to the City Library to get some information on the history of the School Department. It is an interesting read, I can assure you. It was the subject for my final paper for my Master’s Degree. By the way, if any of you run into Marty Meehan, tell him we need a University Museum on the Manzi Dodge lot across from the Francis Gates. All great universities have a museum.


I have been watching this soap opera with blogger Gerry Nutter closely in the newspaper and I want to say that, if he made a false sexual innuendo, Rodney Elliott and Ed Kennedy were the only ones who were right on the vote to elevate him to the Election Commission. They both voted no, according to the Lowell Sun. Granted that he has apologized, but calling into question a women or man’s sexual orientation is grounds for voting against his appointment. I cannot believe that I am casting my vote against most of the councilors who I supported in the last election, but there you have it. He should not have been appointed.

I painted my house light green, which is so much better than the Pepto-Bismol pink that it was. I even received compliments from St.Margaret’s Parish priest. He is a great priest and very interested in the neighborhood. It is nice living next to a church, I was extremely lucky that it did not close along with parishes like Sacred Heart, because it could have. It is not the most lucrative parish in the city but it holds its own. Having the support of the local priest and the neighbors for the color of the house is a major thing for me.

Patrick Murphy’s son is as cute as can be. I saw him while holding a sign for Veasna Noun recently near the 99 Restaurant. He is getting big and his days as the First Baby are dwindling down every day.

Oh, if I do not have your email address and you want me to have it, send me it to I removed all of my emails, including those of my own children, when scammers posted a notice that I was in a Phillipines jail and you should send money. I just removed the whole lot of you and there are many I do not currently have so send them to me. I over-reacted, I guess, but I found the entire thing to be incredibly embarassing. One thing I do not do, unless I do landscaping or genealogy searches for someone is ask for money. I have never been to the Phillipines.

Anyway, nothing special is going on. I intend to look up some more Indian/Native American lore and pass it on. There are quite a few things I intend to pass on but I have not gotten to them yet. I know everyone looks at winning an election in Lowell as a major step in their political lives but it is not really a big thing. Oh, speaking of people who came up through the political system, I just received a glowing report from an LHS teacher on Brian Martin. They seem very pleased with him at LHS. I intend to write a blog on LHS and the attempts to build a new high school. See you then.

Meanderings and Debates

Every morning, if I see my friends, they cannot help but to comment on how inept President Obama is and how he should be impeached. The latest call for impeachment was if he bombed Syria when he did not have the votes in Congress. Of course, he did not do that. After all, Congress controls the right to go to war. Suffice it to say that the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution was, according to them, an Act of Congress which made it legal for tens of thousands of men to go to war in Vietnam.

I have a tendency to befriend Republicans. I do not know why, maybe it’s because I do not necessarily think that, by virtue of their party affiliation, they are wrong. A lot of what Republicans say does make sense. We must rein in the budget, but not by not heeding the debt ceiling and we must remember that the last President to stay in the budget was a Democrat. We need to review Roe vs. Wade, but not by making it illegal for victims of rape or incest to get an abortion. We cannot be « tea partiers » because there is no room for compromise.

People are, by the authority in the Constitution, controlled in the ownership of small arms For instance, we cannot own every weapon devised by man. No one would seriously state that, the Second Amendment does not allow for the control of certain types of armaments. I would take a good bow and arrow anyday. Small arms are so suburban.

It seemed to me that half of the Pawtucketville City Council debate centered on the loss of thirty-three police officers. The overwhelming call by all candidates except one was to hire those who were laid off back. The fact that the debate was supposedly about the budget did not seem to matter. People in Lowell are scared, it was said, and they need those policemen back or new ones replacing them. Having been robbed myself recently, I kind of had to agree with them.

The debate was interesting and I have five pages of notes. The people whom I felt did the best included past Mayor Jim Milinazzo, City Councilor Edward Kennedy, City Councilor Marty Lorrey, and (eliminating their current status for the sake of brevity) Veasna Nuon, Stacie Hargis, Rita Mercier, Van Pech, and Bill Martin. I reserve the right not to vote for the above-mentioned people, but they did a good job. Getting eighteen people to sit across a theater stage makes for a tight fit. One person, one of three women on the ballot, did not show up. I should also include Joe Mendonca in that group that I mentioned. The others were, in my opinion, mediocre at best.

I found Marty Lorrey’s ninth place finish to be a bit disturbing because I have not seen anyone, except for former Mayor Rita Mercier, work harder on the Council. I do not agree with Marty on everything, but he really puts himself into constituent issues. I thought that he would fare better in the Preliminary Election. My good friend, George Anthes, says that it is a Preliminary Election because it does not involve political parties, and, if it did, it would be a Primary Election. He is the lawyer, I am just a Poitical Science major.

Speaking of Political Science, did anyone but me notice that WCVB television used a University of Massachusetts/Lowell poll in the Boston Mayoral race. Aside from the fact that it is probably easier to call an election in Boston than Lowell, I found that significant. In all areas, Marty Meehan continues to do well; pushing his alma mater and his old Political Science major.

That about wraps up the meanderings of this (diseased?) mind. Just a few thoughts. I intend to make it to more debates.

A Morning with Paul Tsongas

It was a beautiful day in May in a year that Paul was in the Senate, but I do not remember which year it was, so I do not want to just pick one. We went over to 80 Mansur Street, which was Paul and Niki’s home and released all of our children to play with all of Paul and Niki’s children. They were having a great time in the garage where the hay slide was anchored into the wall. I oversaw their play for a few minutes, and, realizing that none of them were going to get into some problem, left to go outside to the garden and talk to Paul.

I found him sitting next to what remained of a tree that he had had cut down. There, around the stump, was a flower garden which was doing very well, with bright blossoms. Paul was planting additional flowers, and, I learned quickly, talking to neighbors who dropped by to talk about the magnificent weather. A treasure trove of influential Lowellians came through the gate to say hello and talk about the weather.

I was digging holes in the dirt so that Paul could place flowers in the holes. All was well with the world, and we got into a discussion on the state of the city. That was a favorite topic for Paul and he stopped the talk about the weather long enough to get some tidbits from the occasional guest about what was going on in their part of the city. I listened with great interest as schools, parks, National Parks, and other items were discussed. Finally, after about an hour, I went in the house to get some coffee.

While standing there, I said that Paul certainly was interested in the city. One of the adults there said, and this was the first time I ever heard the sentence, « Don’t you know, Jim, that to Paul Lowell is the Center of the Universe? » I guess I knew that in some abstract way, but it was said with such finality that it stuck with me from then on.

After a couple of hours, we picked up our children, sheperded them into the car, and returned to our home in the Highlands. We have been in that home, which Paul helped us get by putting in a good word with the banker we eventually went to, for 33 years, I believe. I am painting it green today and for the next week or so, and I hope that it looks rejuvenated. Its salmon color is getting a bit wearing.