West Tisbury


I often feel that Mike and I could make another dog from the amount of fur we regularly brush off Tallulah and Murphy. Now we have something useful to do with it. Simone DeSorcy told me about a Vineyard-wide effort to collect hair, fur, wool trimmings, nylon stockings and pantyhose to aid in the cleanup of the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

The nylons and clippings are used to make booms to protect beaches and coastal waters. These booms are considered as effective as those made from petroleum fiber-based materials. After use, the hair/nylons can be composted with green waste and fed to worms, who complete the breakdown process. In two years, bacteria and worms create non-toxic fertilizer.

Matter of Trust, a nonprofit organization, asks people to collect their hair/fur/wool/nylons to contribute to this International Natural Fiber Recycling System. Here on the Island, the collection and shipping is being organized by Rosemary Gambino of Rosecuts Salon, Causeway Road, Vineyard Haven. John Anderson’s painting company is helping pay for the shipping. Please contact Rosemary if you can help. 508 693-5362 or rosecutsmv@yahoo.com.

I can’t help but be impressed by such a low-tech approach to this seemingly overwhelming disaster. Whenever newscasters mention plugging the leak with golf balls and rubber tires, it just makes me laugh. We are all accustomed to thinking that high-tech scientific solutions, effortlessly implemented, exist for every problem. And yet a dead battery, unchecked, may have caused this horrific ecological mess.

My husband, West Tisbury fireman and former Army Corps of Engineers, provides daily insights I wish I could reproduce here or completely understand. It may be a combination of chauvinism and wifely pride, but part of me truly believes our fire department could solve almost any problem or deal with any disaster that may befall. Hopefully, my theory will remain untested, but Mike’s lectures on pumping capacity and hose pressure make me wonder if fire departments nationwide could help with this situation. FYI: our fire trucks pump 1,000 gallons per minute; a barrel is 42 gallons. Of course, they would have to get 5,000 feet down, and that’s the tricky part.

Congratulations to Neil Greene, grandson of George and Mary Lu Hough, who was awarded a Master of Science degree in Health Communications from Emerson College. The Houghs traveled to Boston to attend the May 17 commencement held at the Wang Theater, followed by a reception on Boston Common. Neil’s mother, Mary Pat Hough-Greene, of New Freedom, Penn., was also there. Mary Lu and George enjoyed the ceremony and “very elegant” reception, and their pride in Neil’s accomplishments was obvious.

I met the nicest woman at the library last week. Lynn Caroline was among the attendees at Joanne Scott’s monthly Health and Wellness program. Lynn and her husband, Mickey, have moved here year-round after being summer residents for several years. Welcome.

Remember that the library needs paper shopping bags in the worst way.

I attended a piano recital Sunday at the Whaling Church. Students of Brian Hughes and Lisa Rohn performed a variety of pieces ranging from “Mary Had a Little Lamb,” through Mozart, Beethoven and Bartok, to Scott Joplin, and Lennon and McCartney. Many West Tisbury kids participated. They were: Violet Cabot, Katie Morse, Oliver Silberstein, Sam, Owen, and Zachary Bresnick, Nicholas Andrade, Suzanne More-Straton, Sydney and Phoebe Johnson, Lila Jasny, Claire Pettit, Katherine Donegan, and Anais and Paris Bermudes. I hope I haven’t left out anyone. You were all terrific.

The J.C. Jazz Trio will perform at our library Friday afternoon, May 28, at 4 pm. Admission is free, refreshments are served, and the music is hot. Come and enjoy.

At 4 pm on Saturday, May 29, also at the library, Alan Brigish will talk about and sign his new book, “Breathing in Buddha.” Alan is an insightful photographer, writer, philosopher, and traveler.

As Memorial Day approaches, everyone is readying for the season, be it businesses sprucing up and opening, Island fundraisers on the calendar, preparing for summer programs and summer visitors. The Family Planning Art Show is at the Ag Hall this weekend. Polly Hill Arboretum and the Garden Club are holding plant sales. Bananas, Glassworks, and Treehouse Gallery have intriguing displays.

I’ll be opening my gallery with new paintings and new hours: Thursday-Sunday, 11-5. Hopefully, the impatiens will be planted at the end of the driveway, but gardening has already done something to my back and, at the moment, I’m lying on a heating pad waiting for Dr. LaCoste to perform his magic.

Next door, my mother-in-law is polishing silver and arranging furniture and garden ornaments for the 25th season of Hull Antiques. Her blue chair and sign are up on the tree at 574 Edgartown-West Tisbury Road.

Ellen Weiss is here a week earlier than usual. We have already had our first walk at Hancock Beach. Jeannie and Howard Borregard are here, George and Joan Thomas, and the Doanes. Other summer friends arrive every day. Welcome.