and then there were five

We had to roll out the rest of the housing stock when maDonna and Fanella got here.


the feast

Yes, we are well launched on The Eternal Holiday.
More vacationers arrive today.


happy birthdays

All of my friends seem to be turning 50, 60 or 70 this year. Debby (on the left) turns 60 today, while Roberta (right) recently made 70. Lookin' good, Babe. CBA just turned 60, Elaine and Kathleen are about to turn 50. Me, I'm 60 next year (save the date), though I've been saying I already am for a while. So far, I like this time of life.
For Debby's birthday: Lobsters. Again.


bad geese

There's the Goose, and then there are the geese.
How many can you count?
That's right: Too many.
Debby thinks they are cute.
However, the little ones are doubling in size daily by eating our grass. They are shit factories. My grass is covered with goosegoo.
I tried to run them off by hollering "Alla youse geese, get outta my yard!" at unpredictable intervals that probably made the Guests Them nervous. I tried to herd them, run them over in the truck, honk at them and urge them onto Johnny's yard.
Johnny tried to make the place too hot for them by shooting into the pond.
Boom! Boom!
Made my efforts sound pathetic.
I don't see them this morning. Just the slimy punctuation (mostly commas) of their passing.
They're probably all in my garden. The whole honkin' gaggle.


smells like summer

It's almost beach weather! Let's put some steak on the barbie!
In other beach news, just ordered another hot water heater for Claudia's. Better now than during season. And just checked Hannah's. The Guests Them left this morning, and all is well.


it is an island

Getting to and from Block Island can be daunting. We all have the story of the boat that didn't run, the plane that didn't fly, the car in the wrong place, the late train. Even when all goes well, it can be arduous.
Yesterday, for instance, Debby got on the subway around 8:30, took the train from Penn Station to New London, waited for the high-speed ferry for two-and-a-half hours and finally arrived here at 4:00.
However, she was down at the dock getting lobsters (and squinting, sorry) from the fisherman by 5:00.


block island rental

Excursions and Alarums.
Twas the hour before the guests were to arrive. The new couch had its label removed (yes, WD-40 works to destick), the lawn was newly mown (thanks, Dada), and the canvas once again stapled around the outdoor shower (time no. 3). All was quiet around the house. No mice this year.
Here the people are.
Oops. Forgot to fill the ice trays. Sorry. Sure you can have some ice.
Oops. The smoke alarm is going off in the bedroom? Sorry about that. John, do you have my eight-foot ladder? Thanks, Noah. Quick, let's head to the store for another $7 battery to install. Thanks, Kathleen.
Seems to be quiet again on my watch as seventeen sloops, spinnakers billowing, slip past the shore at six of the morning.
Block Island is now open for business.


new morning

A little too new for my taste.
Damn birds.
Nice sunrise, though.



The island nursery, Goose and Garden (an ironic name in my case given the incursions into my garden by a pair of Canadian geese and their flock of chicks), has really gone all out this year. Many heirloom tomatoes and other veg, beautiful flowers, annual and perennial. After a junket to the dump, where we picked up our spring wardrobes and a corner cabinet, the hardware store, the nursery, the Depot, and the grocery store, we'd pretty much sampled what Block Island has to offer. Until Friday. At which point everything busts open for Memorial Day and a weekend of—ohmigawd—more rain and many many more people.
Meanwhile my season has started without hot water at Claudia's, so I have to try to get a part for the AquaStar this morning. The cleaners and antkillers are coming to Hannah's, and then there is one last fluff and puff before folks arrive tomorrow.


the new yorkers and the fisherman

They got off the ferry, Kathleen and Kate, bearing gifts from far away and bringing excellent weather. We ran into Ricky (for you Missourians, he is my Block Island Bear, right down to dentation issues) at the grocery store while making last minute purchases, and he came on back to dinner. While we ate cow, he spoke fluently and at length on his favorite subject: fish. He has caught 51 stripers so far this spring—more than ever before. "I go fishing. It's my therapy; it's my good thing, it's my circle," he says. "That's my spot, to be where I can be me. A good fisherman."


the guests them

That is how Leonard, half of my father's Team Jamaica, refers to tenants.
The guests them are coming to Hannah's on Friday. The cleaners them are coming on Thursday, and I am still rearranging furniture, making beds, cleaning fireplaces, setting up grills, putting up shades, switching out sponges, cleaning soap dishes and etc.
The houseguests them are arriving at Claudia's this morning. Better tidy up this mess also. And make some more beds.


uh oh

One wonders about oneself sometimes. There is one piece of ground that can be shared by both Claudia's Surf City and Hannah's Honeymoon Hideaway, so that seemed like the best spot for the communal garden. On the other hand, the animal above is standing in that very location. And apparently, judging by these tracks made the very first night after one put the plants in, his path goes straight across the fenceless defenceless garden.
I'm thinking wind chimes, flashlights, peeing around the perimeter, dogs, hunters—anything but a six-foot fence. . .


duty to god and my country

And now a pause in our bucolic maunderings.
I have always maintained that the Boy Scouts (and other scouting spinoffs) are like paramilitary groups, with their oaths and uniforms, medals and hierarchies. The Boy Scouts of America, founded in 1910 as part of an international scouting movement (Nazi youth, anyone?), boasts over five million members, most of them white and none of them homosexual. Legally. The organization that sponsors the most troops (!) is the Mormon church. Un-huh. And now, look at this picture and read this. Terrifying.


crop circle

I promised my guests an organic vegetable garden this year—me and Michelle Obama, but I said it first. And I bet she didn't do the digging herself.
The circle is broken, but it looks like I bit off more than I can chew. When I think of what a drag it was waiting for the grass to grow a year or so ago, the fact that I'm now digging it up makes me hurt. That and the digging itself, which I'll finish doomsday, belike, after all the plants have croaked. On the bright side, it will make for a lot more unevenly sodded lawn—right Hannah?
Note how the wheelbarrow shadow looks like a cave painting of a deer. Or possibly, the Virgin Mary.


curb alert

Does anyone want this couch? Come and get it. Otherwise it's going to the dump.
Moved six couches yesterday. Can you even imagine having six couches?


a pair of christophers

. . .each pretending he doesn't know he's being photographed.


yes, we have bananas

This would have made a good game of What's in the Truck, but frankly, the thought of what's in the truck and how many different shopping emporia I visited to acquire it (never mind the money spent) gives me some serious agita.
Now, thanks to William, what's in the truck is all over the floor of Claudia's Surf City, along with the lawn mower, the barbeque grill, the outdoor furniture, vacuum cleaners and—always—stacks of books. The only thing left in the truck is the firewood my brother Chris brought to the boat, two chaises longues, two hammocks, laundry detergent. . .



In Hollistan. E and the babes.


my lady's chambers

This is a 55- year- old Chambers stove. It cost as much as a new Ford at the time Ted's mother bought it (that's him at left), and weighed as much as one too. This is the second one I have gone to the hinterlands to purchase, the first being purchased in Long Island and now residing at Block Island at Claudia's Surf City. This one purchased on Staten Island now lives at Erin's green machine (see link at right) in Hollistan, Mass.


going to get stove

It needs to move from Point A to Point E.


missouri update

Here is a link to a great LA Times review of Missouri sculptor Bill Dugan's daughter Jessie's sculpture of a twisted tree (if you can follow that). And a way cool explication of her apricot tree by sculptor Jessica Rath on You Tube.
And here is a link to former Goose owner Mike Brown's exploits as a property appraiser in Texas.
You see, people from the Ozarks do get out and about!

Trying to organize a pickup in Staten Island tomorrow, dropoff in Massachusetts same day, shopping the following day and ferry to Block Island the next, so this space will probably be pretty lame til Monday. Sorry.


cinco de mayo

Celebrated appropriately but for the weather.


tv for mayor

Prehistoric Sidewalk Chalk Drawings Discovered in Hoboken
Hoboken, NJ - Ancient chalk drawings recently uncovered on sidewalks in Hoboken appear to have anticipated the current mayoral race.
"TOMVINCENTFORMAYOR.ORG" and "VOTE TOM VINCENT" are among the messages apparently left by a mysterious and ancient civilization.
"It's remarkable that these prehistoric people were able to anticipate the correct format for modern URLs." said one archeologist who chose to remain anonymous, "This changes our entire picture of early indigenous peoples in the area. They were far more attuned to future local politics than we had originally thought."

Okay, so Lil' Kim has pulled out of the race to become Hoboken's mayor, insisting that the story was an April Fool's Day prank, but our own Tom Vincent is in—no fooling! Those of you who live in Hoboken, get out and vote a week from today on May 12; others may show their support financially, voluntarily or emotionally at the web site linked.


the thing i bought, 2

Check out the little counter things at Claudia's Surf City in Block Island. Is The Thing I Bought destined to move from Missouri?


home entertainment

An Entertainment was held last night, but I'm too wasted to upload the pictures. Suffice it to say that Deb, Ed, Barb, Elaine, Adam and Kathleen were in attendance and that there was singing, dancing, eating and, yes, drinking, though not by Barb, who likely feels better today than the rest of us, one of whom had to drive back to New Jersey at three ayem.



Bright lights; big bills.
But the Mockingbird saved me a parking space good for today!