Editorial: Don’t doubt teens

We’ve seen a lot of teenagers thrust into the national spotlight in the past few weeks. Some have dazzled audiences by winning medals in the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, while others have commanded the attention of the nation by calling for stricter gun laws following the senseless tragedy at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., that left 17 dead. Lately, teens have continually shown overwhelming strength, compassion, and drive. Not bad for a generation that is often accused of being self-obsessed and lazy. To start on a light note, American teens have repeatedly showcased athletic excellence during the … Read more

About Town: Information

Freedom of Information (FOI) is a term of art. For those of us who are followers of what is going on at town hall and in Hartford, it means being able to know what government is doing. I always prefer to start at the bottom and work my way up when following such things. So what is most important for me is to know where local government is at. Thanks to living in Weston, where a favorite word is “transparency,” doing so is a piece of cake. Do you want to know what any board or commission is up to? … Read more

Editorial: Black History is American History

At a time when discussions of diversity and inclusion dominate America’s cultural sphere, we celebrate Black History Month. Not just to remember the triumphs of a select few or the country’s progress in civil rights over the last 60 years, but to acknowledge a historical narrative that is uniquely black and undoubtedly American. Harvard alumnus Dr. Carter G. Woodson is credited with originating Negro History Week in 1926, intentionally choosing the week between the birthdays of Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln to focus on the study of African Americans. Woodson was just the second black man to earn a doctorate … Read more

Walsh’s Wonderings — The importance of silly

In what was the most expensive act of littering in the history of our planet, Elon Musk launched his cherry red Tesla Roadster into space last week. Because ’Merica. The enduring image was of the mannequin in the spacesuit lounging behind the wheel of the open convertible while Earth looms in the background. The incongruity of a car in space captures both the audacity and absurdity of Mr. Musk’s latest effort to monetize the final frontier. It was at once silly and significant. As ridiculous and admittedly useless as firing a car into orbit around the sun is, the act … Read more

About Town: Cooperation

Regional cooperation of the voluntary kind is becoming more popular. It works when all parties gain something. Right now that means saving money. What does Weston have that it might share with its neighbors in the catchment area of the “Aspetuck News?” I would venture to guess that Weston could serve as an example for Easton and Redding of what happens when you go it alone in the field of public education. Easton and Redding share a common high school, Joel Barlow. I wonder if some residents of Easton and Redding showed up at the 2018 edition of the League … Read more

Editorial: Who you gonna call?

The recent incident in which Hawaiians were terrified when an alert about an incoming missile was mistakenly disseminated is an extreme example of how ill-prepared we can be in the face of a disaster. And while this was extreme — with little time to respond in any meaningful way — it is a stark reminder for us to take stock and think about the ways we can be prepared for the disasters most likely to befall us. To that end, it was good news to hear that Georgetown Village Restoration Inc. plans to create a resource guide to be used … Read more

About Town: Arts

There are some things I can’t abide. One is crushing the spirit of creative young people by downplaying the importance of the arts. I can’t tell you how thrilled I’ve been over the years by the productions of musicals and serious plays by Weston High School’s Company drama group. Having seen My Fair Lady four times in my youth, twice with Julie Andrews as Eliza, I still thrill to the memory of the spectacular job Company did with this wonderful classic a few years ago. Now the program is faced with budget cutbacks due to no fault of its own. … Read more

Commentary: Groundhog Day, the untold story

Groundhog Day is Feb. 2. Everyone knows that. But the public doesn’t know that groundhogs across the country are festering this week in their burrows, as they have on the second of every past February since the early sixties. Phil, the Punxsutawney groundhog, once again is getting top billing. Other hogs — never mentioned in the news — are nobodies. To put this in perspective, a ‘Hoggist’ from Maine said, “Some people complain the media favors one political party over the other. That’s small potatoes. The media lacks the guts to report on the hog’s plight. It’s always about the … Read more

Walsh’s Wonderings — Fingernail technology

In my ongoing effort to address all the world’s problems, I’ve finally come to fingernail clippers. You’re welcome. Clippers have never gotten respect. Even inventor David Gestetner’s heart was really in his other invention, an early handspun office copier for documents. As a result, the simple compound lever device we’ve used since the 1800s hasn’t changed much. Most come with that tiny hook to scrape the dirt underneath the nail and a file to smooth the edges of that dull blade you’ve been nursing for years. I used to get a zipped case every other Christmas or so with a … Read more

Commentary: Tu Bishvat — Celebrating more than trees

Tu Bishvat, observed on Jan. 31, is a Jewish holiday celebrating trees and ecological awareness. It has been a Jewish Earth Day since long before ecological awareness became popular. The Jewish National Fund adopted a custom of planting trees in Israel beginning in 1908. Today the JNF oversees major tree planting events in large forests every Tu Bishvat. Over a million Israelis take part in the tree planting.  Some observe a Tu Bishvat Seder with specific fruits and four cups of wine with creative prayers. Tu Bishvat is the Israeli Arbor Day. Ecological organizations have adopted the holiday to further … Read more

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