West Tisbury: Dick was a prolific science fiction writer

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— Kyra Steck

It’s been a mild, rainy weekend, following a chilly week with enough sunshine that I was happy to work outside. My snowdrops are lovely. I wish the yellow eranthis was spreading as vigorously. A few stubborn plants remain, though their frilly leaves and brightly colored flowers are still a welcome sight. I hope I don’t have to move them to another spot, as I have visions of that early combination increasing to a carpet of flowers in the bed outside my back door. Ruth Kirchmeier has a similar display that I have long admired.

I saw big yellow crocuses blooming at Patti Linn’s last week. Louise Bessire’s snowdrops are making their annual show along Edgartown Road. My snowdrops came from Louise, and from Hallie and Al Mentzel, all the more precious now that the gift-givers have died. I have added some of the double varieties and some with more pronounced green veining, but most of mine are from those gifts.

I have passed along thinnings of those bulbs to several friends. When I saw Leslie Baker the other day, she told me hers are spreading nicely. They bloom with other early spring bulbs among clumps of shiny ginger leaves and sweet woodruff.

Nicole Galland has returned home after receiving her M.F.A. in creative writing from University College, Dublin. Already a well-known and published writer, Nicole needed the master’s degree so she can teach, and she wanted to spend a year in Ireland. So she did. It sounded like a magical time. Nicole lived in a 300-year-old manor house overlooking the sea in a small village north of Dublin that she described as being “like the Menemsha of Dublin.” Perhaps the setting for a future book?

A graphic story by Paul Karasik is in this week’s New Yorker, “The Death of Philip K. Dick Brought to Life,” written to commemorate the 40th anniversary of Dick’s death. Dick was a prolific science fiction writer of prescient tales that foresaw many of the technological achievements we take for granted today, such as facial recognition technology, driverless cars, and the ability of advertisers to target individuals according to information gathered about their preferences. Several of his books have influenced filmmakers and authors of more modern works. 

At the West Tisbury library this week are several special programs, both in-person and via Zoom. Today, Thursday, March 10, Lara Tupper will lead an online writing workshop, “I Remember, Writing Childhood Stories,” at 4:30. At 7, Marie Benedict will read from her new novel, “Her Hidden Genius.” Sign up for both programs at wt_mail@clamsnet.org. In-person programs needing no previous registration include a jazz-themed documentary and discussion with Dave Kish on Saturday, March 12, at 3, and a Sunday afternoon Music Street Concert at 2. Tuesday, March 15, at 5, the West Tisbury energy committee will host an information session about the proposed 100 percent Electric article on this spring’s town meeting warrant. Get the Zoom link at wt_mail@clamsnet.org

A reminder from Elexis Pachico that she will be hosting a recruitment information event for anyone on the Vineyard who is interested in becoming a foster parent. There are not enough foster homes here, so our children are often sent off-island to unfamiliar towns, a tough situation for a child already facing difficulties. The event is this Saturday, March 12, 11 to 1. Call Elexis at 508-326-1155 for information and directions.

The League of Women Voters and Coalition to Create the M.V. Housing Bank invite everyone to a voter forum to discuss the housing bank warrant article before upcoming town meetings. The meeting will be Wednesday, March 16, 6:30 to 8, on Zoom.The Zoom link will be available on March 14 at info@leagueofwomenvotersmv.org or info@ccmvhb.org. You may also submit your questions in advance using either email.

I just got home from attending Jack Ryan’s opening at the library. It is a real love affair with New York, and brought back happy memories of my art school days exploring the city’s fabulous architecture. Make time to see it.