Tisbury: Preparing for climate impacts

— Kyra Steck

Heard on Main Street: Don’t be irreplaceable. If you can’t be replaced, you can’t be promoted.

The Tisbury Community Preservation Committee is looking for worthy projects in our town. You have to apply to get the money. The CPC fund supports efforts for Community Housing, Historic Preservation, Recreation, and Open Space. If you are working on something that fits these criteria, apply now to be considered for funding. First you have to apply to see if your project qualifies. Questions at tisburycpc@gmail.com. It appears that your timing is critical.

I guess if you lived in California right now, you’d say all that follows is also rather critical. I guess I might have found outdoor temperatures of 103° would be the time to decide we needed to stop all that we have been doing to kill our planet. Climate change is becoming painfully realistic right now.

Climate Preparation Week begins with a panel discussion on Climate Impacts on Our Foods Systems next Thursday, Sept. 24, at 1 pm. At 7 pm there will be a virtual discussion about Palaces for the People. The webinar on Friday, Sept. 25. at 10 am is called Neighborhood by Neighborhood: Mapping Our Resilience; this explores Boston’s community assets and how these may help create a more climate-resilient future in marginalized neighborhoods.

At 7 pm on Saturday, Sept. 26, learn the Economics of Climate Change. The discussion will focus on the relationship between economics and sustainability, and how economic growth has facilitated climate change and social justice issues.

There’s more: A conversation on How Repair Events Can Transform Our Throwaway Culture will be held at 6:30 pm on Tuesday, Sept. 29. Then at 6:30 pm on Wednesday, Sept. 30, a few ministers will tell you there is no Climate Justice Without Racial Justice, and the fight must be led by those most impacted.

Each of these topics is tantalizing. To attend any one of them you must register. Check the Vineyard Haven library for how to do this.

Sometimes Zoom seems a wonderful treat, a way to visit with Island friends who can’t get here safely right now. Other times it is overwhelming. Partly, for me, it is because the computer has a spark of stubbornness which interrupts the trip into Zoom, sometimes requiring several attempts. It has to be the computer, because I am sure I am doing everything correctly. Maybe.

I think we should be a little ashamed of ourselves. Posting a huge sign saying “Mandatory” and “must wear masks” is downright laughable when half the people in sight ignore it. Mandatory means it has to be done. Optional seems to be a more appropriate word here.

Someone suggested that all the women wearing masks are now spending more on eye makeup. I hadn’t noticed that, but sometimes I need a double-take when someone in a mask calls my name.

I find I am more likely to recognize the voice than the disguised face. Fortunately for me, my friends are nothing if not persistent. And it does give me a warm feeling when I realize that someone has gone out of their way to say hello.

I had my first interaction with a treadmill last week at the YMCA. I’ve been walking happily on paved surfaces that don’t try to throw me off. And have been also enjoying most of our weather, especially when it began to cool down. I even enjoy the few people I meet who seem to go out of their way to say good morning or simply hi — but I usually walk where I see no one, so I don’t wear a mask. I do have one to quickly slip on if someone approaches. But I had never realized what a difference it makes to be able to breathe easily.

But I will tell you that I am more exhausted after 15 minutes on a treadmill than I am after walking for more than half an hour outside. It’s the mask. It is suffocating. I can hardly wait to get away from people so I can tug it off and take a deep breath or two or three of fresh air.

Walking on a treadmill is boring and such — as long as you remain fairly confident that it won’t suddenly speed up and toss you to the side. But I did learn I could comfortably speed it up just a little at a time, and that made me feel as if I could do this. If it weren’t for the mask, I would probably say the hardest part for me is getting off the equipment. The fact is that I am not very stable on my feet, and there is nothing to grab hold of as I climb off. Dismounting is a rather harrowing event, but luckily only lasts a few seconds.

Congratulations on their anniversary to Doris Stewart and Jerome Clark today. Happy anniversary to Louisa Gould and J.B. Lamont on Saturday.

Big bunches of birthday balloon wishes go to Samantha Valley today. Tomorrow wish the best to Hilda Illingworth. Barbara Maciel parties on Saturday. Happy birthday on Monday to Trip Barnes and Ken Ward.

Heard on Main Street: Smile. It makes them wonder what you’ve been up to.

If you have any Tisbury Town Column suggestions, email Kay Mayhew, tashmoorock@gmail.com.