I've been sitting in my "work" corner for three hours tonight, trying to bring myself to actually work but I keep finding ways to avoid it. The most significant distraction is an HBO show called "Alive Day." And please know that I write about this with absolutely no political agenda. The subject matter, interviews by James Gandolfini (Tony Soprano) with ten war veterans about the day they cheated death in the war in Iraq, is graphic and difficult to watch but should perhaps be required viewing so that we all remember what is happening every day in Iraq. Some of the more significant things I learned from it are that as of September, 27,506 military men and women have been injured, 3,728 American troops have been killed, for the first time in history, 90 percent of our service men and women are surviving their war injuries, and that the number of amputees returning from the war is the largest since the Civil War. No matter how you feel about the war, those numbers are huge and this show is a jarring reminder that we absolutely need to support our veterans. They are amazingly strong and brave and deserve our utmost respect for their efforts and sacrifices.
Happy 17th birthday to Emmie Shreck. Following closely on the heels of her birthday, Emmie will begin her passage through the college application labyrinth, beginning with an interview in October at Wellesley College. Good luck!
Congratulations to Shannon Dolby Smith and Andy Smith of New York on the birth of their daughter, Adeline Morgan Smith, on August 27, at the Martha's Vineyard Hospital. Adeline weighed 7 pounds, 15 ounces. She is the granddaughter of Pam and Michael C. Dolby and the great-granddaughter of Ted and Floss Morgan, Jr., all of Edgartown.
Congratulations also go out to Donna Louise Barry and Richard Allen Silvia, of East Falmouth, who were married on June 16 at The Navigator Portuguese American Club in East Falmouth. The bride is the daughter of the late Donald R. Anderson of Edgartown, and the late Gladys L. Anderson of Oak Bluffs. The groom is the son of Elton and Marion Nottage of Somerset.
Happy birthday to Tessa Hammond, the absolutely cute-as-a-button daughter of Melissa and Andy Hammond. Tessa turned four last week and celebrated in fine style with two cakes, lemonade, snacks and good friends at State Beach on Saturday.
The Morris clan of Whalers Walk - Meaghan, Darren, John, and Matt - enjoyed their very first venture as an intact family unit to South Beach on Sunday, enjoying the surf and playing what I heard was an outstanding game of Pickle. As Meaghan said, it was the most fun day they've ever had! They followed up the day at the beach with a stellar baseball game later in the day with a number of other friends, including but not limited to the Williamsons, the Kellys, and the Cranstons. It sounds like they all took full advantage of this most beautiful (supposed to rain) day in September.
The Martha's Vineyard Commission will hold a public hearing on Sept. 20 at 7:30 pm at the stone building in Oak Bluffs, where the Commission will consider the nominations of Ben Tom's Road, Pennywise Path, Middle Line Road, Tar Kiln Path, and Watcha Path as DCPCs. If these nominations are approved, these paths will gain a new level of protection from alteration or expansion. If you enjoy walking, biking, or riding through the relative solitude of these quiet paths and don't want their character to change, you may want to mark your calendar now to show your support of the DCPC declaration. For more information, visit the Commission's web site at www.mvcommission.org.
You may recall seeing notices of chowder suppers being offered by the Edgartown Federated Church over the summer, with proceeds benefiting the Island Food Pantry. I received a call from Bess Stone today, who was very excited to share that as a result of those suppers, the church was able to donate $1,600 to the Food Pantry this week. Congratulations to everyone involved on a job well done.
That's about it, folks. Be sure to get me your news. With the Derby going on, there should be lots of fish tales to share. Have a great week.