Category Archives: Totally random

Calling Bartaco. Sort Of.

Bartaco opened nearly 2 years ago. Almost immediately, Linda Gramatky Smith’s fax line rang.

Someone wanted to know something about the menu. That’s odd, Linda thought.

Then the fax rang again. There was a call about reservations. Then another, wanting to know if the restaurant offered takeout.

Linda Gramatky Smith

Linda Gramatky Smith

Linda and her husband Ken have had their fax number for 22 years. (She’s a 1960 Staples grad; together they run Gramatky Galleries, handling the works of her late father, “Little Toot” illustrator Hardie Gramatky.)

The Smiths’ fax number is 203-222-8220. Bartaco‘s number is 203-222-8226. There would not seem to be much confusion — except “8226” is actually the same as “TACO,” on your phone’s keypad. The Wilton Road restaurant paid some pretty pesos for that easy-to-remember number.

Unfortunately — even before a tequila or two — plenty of people read the letter “O” as the number “0.”

Uh “oh.”

You or I would get pretty angry after the first couple of calls.

Fortunately, Linda and Ken are not you or I.

For 2 years, every time the fax line rings, they’ve answered it. Patiently, they explain the situation. Always, the callers are grateful. Nearly always, they compliment the Smiths on their patience and pleasantness.

Bartaco is very popular. That means a lot of people call the wrong number.

Bartaco is very popular. That means a lot of people call the wrong number.

In fact, the Smiths do more than just answer the fax. If they’re not quick enough to pick up — and the caller hears the fax “beep,” and hangs up — the couple calls back and gives the correct phone number. That kindness is always met with awe.

“We like Westport’s restaurants. We want them to succeed,” Linda explains, as if every Westporter who received at least 300 calls in 2 years — her estimate — would be so sanguine.

Bartaco has been responsive. They’ve added the numerals “8226” to their website, which has helped considerably. But the calls still keep coming — a few last week, Linda says. She thinks there are still some places (“maybe Yelp?”) that say only “203-222-TACO.”

The Bartaco website includes phone numbers for all 6 restaurants. Each ends in "TACO" -- er, "8226."

The Bartaco website includes phone numbers for all 6 restaurants. Each ends in “TACO” — er, “8226.”

Actually, Bartaco has done even more for Linda and Ken. The other day, they invited the couple in for a complimentary meal.

The Smiths had a great time. They loved the lively river scene, and the food was great.

Linda and Ken thanked the staff for an excellent meal.

In person. Not by phone.

Ignore This Sign At Your Peril

Westporters are famous for ignoring all kinds of signs: Stop. Yield For Pedestrians. No Parking Here.

But please, whatever else you do, heed this sign:

(Photo/Sandy Rothenberg)

(Photo/Sandy Rothenberg)

Whatever it means.

Andy Yemma Has The Best Snow Gauge In The History Of Weather

Andy Yemma

It’s Friday, March 20.

The snow continues to fall.

We’ll drink to that!

Image

Happy 3/14/15!

Pie

Kunepiam

Ed and Cameron Castillo have lived in Westport less than 4 months.

But they’re discovering a lot about their new town. Thanks to “06880,” for example, they learned the history of their home: the carriage house for The Cockeroft family’s country estate on Stony Point Road, that hidden gem on the west side of the train station.

(The red door that separates their yard from the parking lot makes for a fantastic commute, Ed jokes.)

But one thing stumps them: an engraving just above the door, on the side facing the station.

Kunepiam

“Kunepiam,” it reads — surrounded by what look like Native American pictograms, and perhaps settlers.

Ed’s Google search for “Kunepiam” returned absolutely nothing.

So he’s turning to an even better source: the “06880” crowd.

If you know what the word means — or where the engraving comes from — click “Comments.”

And that traffic jam you see the next time at the station, near Ed and Cameron’s house? That’s the “06880” crowd too, looking even more closely at this mystery.

…And Stay Out!

Westport is famous for forming committees to address every issue.

But getting together to figure out how to be not nice — I’m sorry. That’s going a bit too far.

Hat tip to Mark Mathias, who spotted this sign the other day at Town Hall.

Hat tip to Mark Mathias, who spotted this sign the other day at Town Hall.

Spring Ahead!

There is light at the end of the tunnel.

This Saturday night, we turn our clocks ahead one hour.

Daylight Savings Time is here. That pile of snow outside, which won’t melt until Memorial Day?

Just an illusion.

Daylight Saving

Westport To Mother Nature: You Win!

We give up! Uncle!

SO001396

And no, that is not just a white background.

It’s our !@#$%^&* back yard.

Desperately Seeking Valentines …

… or something!

Lynn U. Miller caught these folks last night at CVS:

Valentines 1 - Lynn U Miller

Unfortunately for them, the candy shelves were pretty bare too:

Valentines 2 - Lynn U Miller

Interestingly, a few “Luv Boxers” remained:

Valentines 3 - Lynn U Miller

As well as these even odder gifts:

valentines 4 - Lynn U Miller

(Photos/Lynn U. Miller)

 Happy Valentine’s Day! Hope you’re making it through unscathed!

Valentine’s Day Yarn

(Photo/Lynn U. Miller)

(Photo/Lynn U. Miller)