Category Archives: 2009

What you stole

Sometime yesterday afternoon, you and at least one other friend broke into my house and stole my stuff. You pawed through my clothing, you smoked in my house. You violated my security and you left your tire iron on my bed.

You stole my pearl earrings and necklace that my grandparents had given me. But you cannot steal the memories of being at Epcot Center with them and the joy of watching the guy open up the oyster I had picked and finding not one, but two pearls in it.  Even my grandfather was overjoyed with my luck that day and we had them made into earrings with gold backings.  I wore them and the necklace they gave me at my graduations, at weddings, and at my grandfather’s funeral as a tribute to him.

You stole the necklace my father brought back from Saudi Arabia.  But you cannot steal the feelings of happiness when he would finally come back from setting up the computer system for his client or the anger and annoyance that went with it.  Not entirely happy memories, but they made us a stronger family.

You stole my celtic knot…perhaps my most favorite necklace. It isn’t worth anything on the street, especially in a neighborhood with no Irish. However, you cannot steal the fun that I had out at Hammond Castle, Connecticut, Carver, or Salem dressed up as a “Renaissance” woman being teased by actors and men who believe in chivalry or the memories of delivering cookies or taking pictures from the front lines.

You took my baby locket, my confirmation cross, my grandmother’s jewelry.

You took my feeling of security in my own home.

You ruined my door and the wall I had just painted.

You took my stash of Canadian money.

You, however, did not hurt anyone who lives in the house.

You did not burn down my house with your disgusting cigarette left burning in the rug.

You did not take my great grandmother’s charm bracelet, the only thing I have of hers.

You did not take one of my best gifts ever…the one that my niece picked out for me on her own, and with her own money. The one that I will be wearing this Christmas as it is the about the only jewelry that I have left.
I doubt you are long for this life…but I hope before you die, we get to have some news that you have been arrested or are already in prison and off the streets. I can honestly say that you are one of the few people that I hate.

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Dry Dock One

Sometimes I get to do really fun stuff because of work…on Saturday, under blue skies and with no wind, I got to go into Dry Dock One at the Charlestown Navy Yard and learn all about its history.  Not only did we get to go into it, we got to spend about an hour wandering around, taking pictures, looking at fish and crabs, and climbing up and down the edges. It was awesome.

We found really interesting objects inside the dry dock (a skull!! How did that get there? Seems to be a prey and not a predator like I originally thought) and saw lots of numbers around us.

Most of these had fallen off of the walls as the epoxy used to secure them to the surface dried and cracked in the heat and cold. I sooo wanted to take a few home with me.

Then, we went into the Caisson…this is the thing that keeps the water out of the dry dock, and I was inside of it. It is actually very clean inside, which was slightly impressive.  It is also impressive that so little metal is keeping the ocean out of that dry dock.

Next field trip may include the Chain Forge and the Rope Walk…and a trip to Lowell to look at their education program. Sometimes I love my job.

Mr. Backwards

Dear Asshat,

Yes…I know that apartheid did not occur during the 1800s. I was trying to tell you all the important events that had been debated in Faneuil Hall over the years.  The list of: apartheid, child labor laws, women’s rights to vote, union rights, religious rights, and others should NOT be met with the reply: “So nothing of significance happened here”.

When I tell you that I love having the right to vote and that my Grandmother, 90 years old this May and on Facebook, loves the fact that she was BORN with the right to vote, you should not reply back with “Stop being defensive. That is the problem. You are a woman and women get defensive”.

You should also not tell me that I am a waste of tax payer money and an embarrassment to civil service everywhere. I am not a civil servant and you are an Ass Hat. Please do not come back to Boston…go back into your hole and back to worrying about the fact that some of our nation’s greatest treasures are in the hands of Massholes like myself.

No cookie for you,
Me

 

Dear Lovely Canadian Men,

I love you. You helped me be able to detach myself from that Ass Hat from somewhere America. Thank you for being the sweet Canadians that I know most are. I hope that you are dating each other because you would make a cute couple. Please come back to Boston anytime you want and bring all your friends.

Me

USS Constitution

I had a great post here about the neighbors who want the USS Constitution to change the way she fires her cannons because they feel lit is too loud.  They want the cannons to be quiet until 9 AM on the weekends and the National Anthem to not be played so loudly and the charges to be smaller.

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To which I say: shut up.

This tradition has been going on since before 1800 and the charges have been made smaller over the years already. They barely use any black powder to set the cannons off already and oh yeah, we are at war. These cannons are shot off twice a day in honor of the men and women who are serving and who have served. Many of these sailors will be going off to active duty combat after their 3 years at the Constitution is up and many of the National Park Rangers have also served in some capacity.  This ship is the mascot of the entire Navy and it is only appropriate for her to fire her cannons off as a sign of respect…and its pretty cool to watch them do it, as well.
I was lucky enough to get to take a trip on the Constitution a few years ago with my Dad. It was Armed Forces Day and so there was a 19 gun salute (why are they always odd numbers?) to the men and women of the Armed Forces. While I couldn’t really see over the sides of the ship, I knew enough to get down to the gun deck in time to see them load and fire the charges. Afterwards, I got one of the shells as a souvenier of my trip…it stunk to high heaven for a few weeks, but it is awesome. See:

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So, be quiet people living at Flagship Wharf…Nomar would have never been a jerk like you are. Oh, and I hope you enjoy it next summer when they are turning the Yard back into a working one and putting the USS Cassin Young into drydock! That should be exciting…lots of banging and crashing and melting and tearing. Its going to be awesome to see what kind of letter you send to the NPS unit.

Radio Boston/WBUR at Faneuil Hall

Snagged from their website:

WHAT: Radio Boston taped before a live audience.

WHERE: Boston’s historic Faneuil Hall.

WHEN: Tuesday, Nov. 17 @ 8pm

WHO: Jane Clayson, David Boeri, and YOU!

We’ll be talking about gang violence in Boston, and an innovative new program designed to stop it in the streets.

For FREE tickets, email us at radioboston@wbur.org with your name, phone number, and the number of people in your party (limit four tickets per request). We’ll get back to you.

Hope to see you there!

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Halloween

We had our Halloween party last night since the bar we go to has their party on the Friday before the holiday. There were a lot of interesting costumes, but we were able to take 2nd and 3rd place in the costume contest with these:
Winners
Michael was some local, but American Gothic took second place (50 bucks!) and Macho Man Randy Savage took third (20 bucks). Overall a good night.

We also had other people hopping into the picture frame through the night:
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While I did not place, I liked my costume a lot. I was Amelia Earhart and my boyfriend was Ernest Hemingway:
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I could totally see Amelia wearing striped socks.

Tonight, we have already bottled beer and I am going to go have dinner soon. After that, pumpkin carving!! I love Halloween

Saugus Iron Works

Another National Park here in Massachusetts is Saugus Iron Works. Located in Saugus, MA it encompasses one of the first Iron works in the colonies and created some of the best iron outside of Spain.

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There is a collection of buildings that can be visited including a nail forge as demonstrated by Ranger Brandon here:

One of my favorite pieces of this park was the small map of the original site. Reminded me of a similar map I saw in Munich…

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There is also a project to get the river cleaned up by taking out the phragmites that are choking the river. By taking them out, the river will flow quicker and take out the sediment that has settled on the bottom. It will make the river healthier and bring back even more animals. When I was there, they had orioles, frogs, eels, little fishes, and signs of groundhogs. So well on their way.

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Saugus Iron Works is open until the end of the month and is free.

A Scottish Tramp

John Muir and Teddy Roosevelt

Perhaps the most significant event in the history of the National Park Service was the early friendship and influence of John Muir and Teddy Roosevelt.  It is because of him that we have Yellowstone National Park, as well as Rocky Mountain and other areas preserved by people influenced by him.

I think, though, that the best thing about John Muir was his writing. It is very accessible and entertaining; he was not writing to impress people with his knowledge…he was writing to impress people about the importance of nature.  Some of my favorite quotes follow:

“Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves.” — from Our National Parks (1901)

“Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home; that wildness is a necessity; and that mountain parks and reservations are useful not only as fountains of timber and irrigating rivers, but as fountains of life.” — from Our National Parks (1901)

“As long as I live, I’ll hear waterfalls and birds and winds sing. I’ll interpret the rocks, learn the language of flood, storm, and the avalanche. I’ll acquaint myself with the glaciers and wild gardens, and get as near the heart of the world as I can.” — from The Journals of John Muir

“When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.”

“I only went out for a walk and finally concluded to stay out till sundown, for going out, I found, was really going in.”

From whence they came…

At work, we have some maps up and try to encourage people to mark where they are from with pins. At the end of every week, we take the pins down and “reset” the maps. I took down the old maps the other day because certain areas (like Hartford, CT and the Netherlands) were completely obliterated, but it was really interesting to see the distribution of all the pins. Here are some pictures (and proof, if you’ve ever needed it, that people come from every continent to visit Boston):

Visitors from the South Pacific
Visitors from the South Pacific
Visitors from Europe and the Arabic Pennisula
Visitors from Europe, Asia Minor, Northern Africa
Visitors from Africa
Visitors from Africa

It will be interesting to see how the map morphs and changes over the next few weeks as most of our visitors will be from New England and Western Europe. Most of our cruise ships are carrying people from the New York/New England area or Britain to Canada and back again, so probably fewer South Africans or people from the South Pacific, but who knows!