THE BLUE PLATE (Chatham village)
It's homey/sophisticated. Good middle of the culinary-spectrum food, which I prefer. Unusually intelligent staff. (Someone smart is doing the hiring.)

Makes 'em umm good.

CHATHAM BOOK STORE (MAIN ST.) Where we bookies love to meet, browse, order, buy.

The CHATHAM PUBLIC LIBRARY (FERN PELLETIERI) BKO (Bend the Knotted Oak Chamber Music) loves Fern. She has the calling and the librarian-chops. Get that intellectual property to the people who need it! Yes.

THE BERRY FARM (Rte. 203, Chatham)
Find everything worth eating there. Joe, the creative, workaholic just doesn't stop. Staff is great, but when you deal with Patty, everything in the world seems rosier!

THE GRAINERY (Chatham village)
Everyone behind the counter is pleasant, but Kathy, in her smart, quiet, dry-humored way brings something special. (A pretty woman is always appreciated. It doesn't cost extra, and in addition, Kathy remembers. How does she do that?)

[See article Local Archives]

TechYourHome (East Chatham)
Computer guy Daniel Harrigan gets it done.
(See mini-review to your right) Contact him at

MH August 2015

In the park I saw an old lady, her son and her grandson (age two, or three at most) tossing around a frisbee.

The old lady had missed a few catches. Finally she caught one.

"Good one, Grandy!!" the toddler shouted happily.


YANNIS (restaurant at Chatham House)
Well-prepared food in a beautiful dining room. George oversees. And If you're lucky, Maggie or Desiree will serve you.

DANIEL HARRIGAN, Computer Guy: a mini- review

MH August 19, 2014

If a first-hire is any indication, Daniel Harrigan is a computer guy to be cherished.

1) What he is not: He is not one of those smart-ass young males who thinks that because he's in a trendy business, he is a "master of the universe"--and who therefore deserves to soak you.

2) If the solution to your computer problem is not on the top of his conciousness, he seems to know how to find out and implement--fast! (That saves you time and money.)

Contact him in East Chatham at
518-653-9896 or

Sean Eldridge Announces for U.S. House of Reps.


MH September 25,2013
A new Democratic resident of NY's 19th district, 27-year-old Sean Eldridge, is officially in the run against Republican Chris Gibson.

His stated positions are mostly Dem-friendly with a pinch of rural and local favorites. (Check the web site: www.seaneldridge.com).

He's in favor of Planned Parenthood, gay marriage, Medicare and Social Security, the middle classes, schools, environment, affordable health care. He throws in familiar staples like veterans, farms, debt-reduction, etc. Like most of these summaries (both Rep. & Dem.), the language is careful mush.
[Use arrows to cont.]

One of Eldridge's earlier positions is now conspicuously missing: getting big money out of elections. Perhaps that plank stimulated too many hoots in view of the fact that much of his claim to electability is money. The money seems mainly attached to his husband, Chris Hughes (Facebook multi-millionaire, new owner of several residences and The New Republic, a political journal).

[Use arrows to cont.]

Money is both the blessing and the curse of this campaign. Obviously, it begets moneyed friends-in-high places and cash for getting elected. But that much money, along with the newness of his residency, gives the appearance of attempting to buy a seat in Congress .

Let's keep minds open. Maybe a too young, too rich upstart is preferable to a slick, radical-right Republican who masquerades as a "moderate."

 Education/Sports research
    [MH April 2011]


Apparently, the $31,000 financing of Ichabod Crane high-school football was a big issue in the meeting of the Board of Education, as reported by Emilia Teasdale in the Columbia Paper (4/28/11).

This reader was struck by the fact that there seemed to be no one at that meeting who questioned the basic appropriateness of high-school football in light of recent studies of cognitive damage from the game. One study in particular indicates brain damage to most players—not just those with obvious concussions.

FRONTLINE summarized an interview with Tom Talavage regarding his neuralogical study:

“An associate professor of electrical and computer engineering at Purdue University and co-director of the Purdue MRI Facility, Talavage authored a study [PDF] that found cognitive damage in high school football players who had not been diagnosed with a concussion.

  [Use arrows to cont.]

‘Nobody really expected to see this at the high school level,’ he tells FRONTLINE. ‘And we certainly didn't expect to see it throughout the season in such a large percentage of the players.’ This is the edited transcript of an interview conducted on March 1, 2011.”

Read more: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/football-high/interviews/tom-talavage.html#ixzz1Ky22uN9i

Cognitive damage!

This study was also featured in a PBS special. Reports in Sports Illustrated, Slate, the N.Y.Times are available, with articles that describe long-term, football-related suicide and depression issues.
No doubt coaches and trainers take every precaution currently available to protect the safety of Ichabod Crane players, but this information should not be ignored.

If the facts about cognitive damage have not been refuted, no one should be in favor of allocating $31,000 to a school-sponsored program to make our local kids dumber!

  [April 2011] MH]


[MH April 2011]

Thinking Tools Instead of Brain Damage?

Recently, SUNY history lecturer Stuart Smyth and I were having a spirited discussion about the teaching of history at the college level. At one point I described a high-school course my son had at the Calhoun School in NYC, in which kids were goaded, lured, and pressed into digging for the difference between propaganda (marketing/myth/political half-truths/lies, etc.) and fact in modern history and media.

Later, I indulged a fantasy regarding Ichabod Crane High School:
The Board of Education decides to allocate the entire football budget ($31,000, according to one report) to one or more of their history, language, or economics teachers--to devise and teach just such a course! Imagine. $31,000 toward making kids more discriminating citizens, voters, thinkers. (And, in my fantasy, the Booster Club raises money for it!)

Getting prepped for truth-discrimination has got to be better than butting heads and throwing people to the ground. Imagine giving kids thinking tools instead of brain damage!
  [May 2011 MH]

PS: If no Ichabod teacher is willing, they could try for Smyth.

Gibson Back-pedals on Medicare

  [MH May 2011]
After a visit home, our NY 20th District U.S. Congressman had this on his web site regarding Medicare:

This proposal is only in its initial stages and I look forward to ensuring that we rigorously discuss and debate the details before we finalize any legislation, but I am committed to having that discussion. I hope it is one that everyone on both sides of the aisle and the President can join in on because these health care programs are simply too valuable to let fail.

You didn't vote for a discussion, Congressman. You voted to dismantle Medicare.

The above quotation sounds like back-pedaling. (He must have received an
earful at all those recent town meetings.)


Chartock Enables Gibson. Why?

MH August 3, 2013

Alan Chartock "interviews" Congressman Chris Gibson of NY's 19th district on public radio quite often it seems.

"Interview" is probably the wrong word, as Chartock merely lets the Congressman babble on with his self-serving monologue--without challenge--and seldom with an intervening question. Why?

To listen, one would think Gibson is a "moderate" Republican--bravely, independently defying his party leadership on numerous occasions.
[Use arrows to cont.]

Poppycock. Look at Gibson's votes, Alan. Count them. It is the votes that mean something, not the slick rhetoric. This Congressperson mostly votes the cynical, vicious Republican party line. How can you let him use you and a trusted forum in such a way?


MH August 2015

In the park I saw an old lady, her son and her grandson (age two, or three at most) tossing around a frisbee.

The old lady had missed a few catches. Finally she caught one.

"Good one, Grandy!!" the toddler shouted happily.


MH August 2014

Driving the Taconic Parkway has always been an extraordinary experience of natural NY state beauty, It is probably one of the most beautiful roads in America. Only modest, absolutely crucial signs lived there.

Now large, hideous, blue signs have popped up everywhere--obviously state generated. Whose grotesque idea was this? Who has allowed greedy hands to strew sign-garbage on a magnificent parkway?


MH SEPT. 26, 2014
Yesterday, a Letter-to-the-Editor of the Columbia Paper touted the resume of Chris Gibson as compared with his House-of-Representatives challenger, Sean Eldridge.

The letter made an obnoxious appeal to our presumed provincialism. (Implication: Because Gibson was born and has
[Use arrows to cont.]

lived a lot locally, he must be better and smarter than anyone who has a lot of houses and was born in Canada! Maybe that will be convincing to the hicks among us.)

Other than that, Gibson's resume sounded fine.

However, it is votes that matter. The letter-writer failed to note that, in Congress, the resume guy nearly always votes with the ignorant, backward Tea Party and against Social Security, women, and most pro-civilization initiatives.

You 'd think that someone with all that education would know better.

It may be useful to note that actions speak louder than resumes.

Emily Arnold McCully Reads TARBELL at the Chatham (NY) Bookstore

July 13, 2014

Waiting for Emily

Ida M. Tarbell: the Woman Who
Challenged Big Business--and Won!
by Emily Arnold McCully
Clarion Books 2014

Emily with readers

Waiting for Emily. (Early arrivals.)

IDA M. TARBELL (Review to come-- maybe)

Emily signs books at the
Chatham Bookstore

UEL'S   (cool) PIANO   KIDS 2012

Phoebe Hebert


Julia Rose


Benjamin Halpin





Christopher Howard







Addie Potter



Nervous parents



MH December 6, 2015

When Alexander James Rue was born, he was thrilled to leave oblivion. He was thrilled and astonished at consciousness, and his Mamma and his Daddy and his Calu let him feel it, gave it room to breathe, even fed it, and they loved him unreservedly.

Is it any wonder he fights going to sleep? To him, sleep is oblivion, and he can't figure out why you want him to go back there.

Awake is the chance to grab more alive things, especially looking and moving and doing words and sentences in two languages. (He repeats all words and sentences as if to preserve them in some private memory-box meant for precious objects.)

At age three, he runs simply for that joy of body. He runs and runs. He dances (he is one of the few in his pre-school class who will dance).

[Use arrows to cont.]

Alex finds humans fascinating, and he loves all persons who interact with him. He also mourns each one who leaves the room and closes a door. Their disappearance is intolerable. It is as if they die on him. Only lately does he realize that some of us keep reappearing--that we are not forever lost.

And the questions! Oh, the questions! What you are doing must be explained in detail--along with why you are doing it--and each new word must be carefully defined or normal life cannot continue.

He loves to tease and be teased; and he exults in ragging a listener with humorous, illogical questions and assertions. He begs for the chance at a vigorous denial and a treasured repetition.

Alex: Why were you eating ice cream,
Grandy: Because I am bad, bad, bad!
Alex, supressing his own laughter:


  MH August 2011


The owners bulldoze the ugly thing to the ground and build a beautiful, easy-to-staff PUBLIC LIBRARY! (With lots of parking [out of site] and manicured grounds everywhere else.)

Chatham Crossroads Dilemma

  MH March 18, 2012

See also March 15 Columbia Paper

Changes in the configuration of our village are coming. Go to...

to study the options.

  Feb. 2012



Cathy Chronicles 5

  (Fearless Four) 2011

Cathy (on the porch): Charlie, Charlie!
Come quickly! Look at the snapping turtle in the yard!

Charlie (4-yr.-old arrives with a thump): Oh! I want to touch him!

Cathy: No, No. Stay on the porch. He could take your finger off.

Charlie: Which finger?

Cathy: Goofy! The one you touched him with! He could even grab you and drag you down to the pond.

Charlie: OO. Should I get my swimming suit?

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