From dad to daughter, as she leaves Martha’s Vineyard for college


Dear Naomi,

It’s hard to believe you already have 13 years of schooling under your young belt. But here’s the proof, straight from the pages of the MV Times! Your first day of kindergarten in 1998, and your last in high school just two months ago.

Soon to migrate from your Vineyard Haven nest, to the hallowed dorm rooms of NYU.

Ordinarily, going from one East Coast island to another doesn’t involve big adjustments, but that’s not true in this case. For one thing, Martha’s Vineyard is more than three times the size of Manhattan — 87 square miles vs. 23 — making New Yorkers that much less well-versed than we in the ways of the world. (They have a suburb called Hicksville, for crying out loud!)

New Yorkers smell funny, too. That’s because, whereas many N.Y. dwellings have indoor plumbing, there are no outdoor showers. I’ll take “The Vineyard” over “The City” any time.

But enough helpful pointers. After all, it’s your future you are embarking on, not mine. Don’t let me spoil the thrill of exploration.

OTOH, I feel compelled to offer some paternal advice: 1. Avoid Hicksville.2. Frequent off-off Broadway.

3. Eat real food.4. Get tattooed.5. Speak your mind.6. Make your bed.7. Lock your bike.8. Have fun.9. Dazzle.

10. Call Yiayia.

Okay, that’s all I have to say.

Oh wait! Before you hurry off into blue yonder: trust your instincts…..spare a dime….make good friends…..fall in love…..embrace it all. Don’t just fly, soar! We’re here if you need us.

S’agapo poli,


Tom Pallas lives in Edgartown. Naomi Segal-Pallas has been an intern at The Times for the last two summers. We, too, wish her well.