2000-10-28 / Columnists

Short Takes 1028

Election day is only a week away and many voters are not busy deciding whom to vote for, but whether they should vote at all for the candidates presented by the major parties. There was once a theory that people watched television because it was there and that if nothing they liked were on, they would watch the Least Objectionable Program (LOP). I think that is true and next week I am probably going to go to the polls to vote for the Least Objectionable Candidate (LOC). Let’s start at the top. I was a Gore man until I saw him in action and decided that he was a liar. I am no longer a Gore man. I thought that I might vote for Bush until I saw him in action and decided that he was a dolt. I can’t vote for a dolt, especially a Republican dolt. I never considered voting for Nader because he has been far too liberal for far too long. Who then to vote for? The LOP is Bush. Better a nice guy who says what he believes, butchers the English language and is a dolt than a guy who says that he invented the Internet. The same is true of the Senate race. I hated Hillary from the beginning. Anybody but Hillary was my mantra until Ricky came along with his farfetched ideas and his inability to stop his own unethical ads. Now, Hillary doesn’t seem too bad and she is probably going to be my LOC. Vote for George W! Vote for Hillary! I can’t believe I am saying that, but what choices do we have? In the House of Representatives we have a real choice. Vote for Tony Weiner the Democrat who remains a Democrat, not Noach Dear, who moves from Democrat to Republican to Conservative with the wave of his hand. I know that Weiner blew the pool and that he voted to allow more limited flights into our airports, but he is certainly more than a LOC. He is a person that you can vote for because you think that he will do a good job for you. The local elections continue the theme. The race for the "non-minority" Assembly seat pits Audrey Pheffer against Anthony Stasi. While Audrey has not done much for non-senior citizen residents of Rockaway and she has never bucked the leadership, she is certainly preferable to Stasi, who is too young to remember that the seat he is seeking was made up to include only whites while the other seat was made up to include only minorities. Look at the districting line, Tony, and tell me I am wrong. Stasi also favors a tax break for those who send their kids to parochial schools, something that I oppose with all of my being. Vote for Pheffer! In the "minority" seat, businessman Mike Duvalle opposes the incumbent, Pauline Rhodd Cummings. There is no doubt in my mind that Duvalle would make the better Assemblyperson (almost slipped and said Assemblyman, which would not have been politically correct). In my opinion, Cummings is a lightweight who has done little for her people in the years since the party gave her the job. Vote! Vote for your favorite candidates or vote for the LOC, but vote. The democratic process depends on you all. Do not take it lightly.

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Kudos to the G-Man for his column last week exposing some of the excesses of management in the Far Rockaway Post Office. I understand that some changes have already been made because of his column. Well done!

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You do not have to travel to the Southland or to Manhattan to have the best fried shrimp you ever ate. They are available right here at The Wharf. They are best when you are sitting outside on a nice summer evening, watching the sun go down over the New York City skyline, but they are equally as good inside on a cold winter day. In addition, try the Sunday brunch at the restaurant. The omelets are superb and the price won’t break your budget.

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People on the west end are very concerned about the redeployment of the fire department engine while the firehouse’s floor is being repaired. The city built a cage for the ladder truck, why not build another one for the engine truck in the parking lot. That lot is little used during the winter months and it would be close by when needed.

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By the way, I have a use for the cage when the floor is finished and the truck returns to the house. Why not use it for a steel cage match between Lew Simon and Geraldine Chapey (the younger). I’d bet we could raise thousand for any charity of our choice with a match such as that one.

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I was lucky enough to have a ticket for the game where the Yankees clinched the championship a week ago Tuesday, but it meant that I did not get home until nearly 2 a.m. It reminded me that the games are being held much too late for the next generation of fans to get involved in the game. I remember when I was a kid, running home after school to catch the end of the games on the radio. The weekday games should begin at 7 p.m. and the weekend games should be played during the day. I know that television money drives the deal, but it is shortsighted for baseball to take the kids out of the game.

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I have been concerned recently over the way young children ride their small scooters through local streets. It is only a matter of time before some nine or 10 year old gets killed because he or she scooted into the street without looking. State Senator Mal Smith should be congratulated for pushing a bill that would mandate that the kids younger than 14 use a helmet and other protective gear while riding the scooters. Smith learned of the danger by speaking with young Zachary Rosen of Belle Harbor. Smith will call the bill "Zach’s Bill," but by any name it is much needed.

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Memo to the community board and to the Chamber of Commerce. Now that Technodome is indeed dead, log onto www.tangeroutlet.com and let them know what we have and what we want them to do for us. I believe that this is the way to go to bring jobs, people and money to Rockaway.

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We have a championship football team in the making right here in Broad Channel. The BCAC Shamrock seven and eight-year-old peewee team is undefeated after six weeks of play. This team is billed as the first Super Bowl championship team from the program and the team deserves the congratulations of the community. It is very unusual for a kid that young to kick an extra point conversion after a touchdown (it is unusual even in high school), but the team’s kicker, Chris Timmons, was 2 for 2 in recent weeks.

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Speaking of football, I attended both the Beach Channel and the Far Rockaway high school football games this week and they were great. Far Rockaway won their fourth game of the season, beating George Washington High School by a score of 14-0. Sophomore quarterback Eric Pegues threw a 30-yard TD pass and scored on a 30-yard run. Beach Channel High School raised its record to 5-1 with a decisive 36-6 win over local rival, John Adams High School. Junior running back Ricky Richardson ran for 265 yards on the day, scoring three touchdowns (80, 30, and 5 yards). Richardson now has 1,055 yards for the season. Everton Hamilton also ran for 80 yards, including a 40-yard touchdown run. Dolphins quarterback Sylvanis Mbachu once again directed the offense and was a standout on defense as well. The Far Rockaway soccer team, which deserves notice as well, raised it record to 7-2 with a 5-2 win over Van Buren High School. Once again, Carlos Orozco was the Seahorse star, scoring two goals in the game.

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The State Department stopped the Voice of America from broadcasting a memorial to the sailors killed on the USS Cole. Why? The memo from State said that the death of the sailors did not "compare with the deaths of more than 100 Palestinians" in Mideast violence. The memo said, "the 17 or so dead sailors does not compare to the 100 plus Palestinians who have died in recent weeks where we have remained silent." What world do these guys from State live in? It certainly is not the real world that the rest of us inhabit each day.

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Two of my favorite lady performers died recently and I would be remiss in allowing their passing without note. Gwen Verdon was always one of my favorites, probably because of the role she played in Damn Yankees. She followed that up with a role as a hooker with a heart in Sweet Charity. She could dance and she could sing and she was the girl next door. She will be missed. Equally missed will be Julie London, who sang "Cry Me A River," like nobody else ever could. She was also a nurse on one of my favorite early television series – "Emergency." Both died the same day and both brought joy to generations of Americans.

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That’s it for this week. Remember to send comments, complaints and story tips to newsie42@aol.com. Have a good week and safe home.


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