Not A Lot Of Good Will From Tina

In December 2010, Tina Dragone was mad as hell. And she wasn’t going to take it anymore.

Goodwill was about to move a few hundred yards down the Post Road — to the old Peppermill site, across from the store Dragone named after herself. It’s “Westport’s premiere (sic) style destination.” (According to the website, anyway.)

She gave the Planning and Zoning Commission a piece of her mind.

She raged about the “32 arrests” at the current Goodwill. She talked about larcenies, shoplifting and stolen handbags. (Goodwill’s attorney replied that there had been 7 police calls that year — some from people locked out of their cars.)

Dragone said that Goodwill hires “ex-convicts.” She pronounced “this kind of element coming into our neighborhood” to be “ludicrous.”

And, she concluded ominously: “We are really afraid.”

Dragone got pilloried by “06880” readers.

But it’s now 2012 — not 2010 — and with the new Goodwill opening to out-the-door lines, I decided to see if the Dragone Lady had softened. I wanted to give her a chance to say, yeah, I just sent over a welcome-to-the-neighborhood fruit basket.

I called yesterday afternoon. I told her who I was, mentioned the “controversy,” and asked what she thought now.

She put me on hold. For 5 minutes. Then she returned.


Tina Dragone (the store).

Perhaps she hung up on me. Maybe we got cut off? (What you believe probably correlates to whether you think President Obama is a Muslim or Christian.)

I called right back. Someone else answered.

I asked for Tina. The new woman asked if she could help.

I explained again why I was calling.

She didn’t hang up immediately.

Instead, she said, “We’re really busy right now.”

Then she hung up.

87 responses to “Not A Lot Of Good Will From Tina

  1. A Saturday afternoon is probably the busiest shopping time for her store, so maybe, just maybe, that was the truth. While I don’t agree with what she said, that woman got slammed for speaking her mind. I don’t blame her for wanting to keep a low profile.

  2. I loved the ballons at goodwill….took a page out of Tina’s book! best of luck to the new Goodwill store! Tina should bring over some brownies and check out the new store! She could learn a few things!

    • Or, maybe donating some clearance merchandise from last year would have been a kind gesture of support.

  3. Longtime Westporter

    Dan, I love how fair you are. You gave Tina a chance to redeem herself with Westporters, but she remains arrogant. (OK, it was a busy afternoon, although I never see much activity at her store. But she knew what you were calling about and could easily have made arrangements to call you back later.) I wonder if she knows how often her name and her store come up in conversation when “the worst of Westport” is discussed in town. Pathetic human being.

    • Spot on, dear Longtime Westporter; a pathetic human being and an altogether too common trait in our holier-than-thou caste system that is bred of ‘affluence.’ It’s not affluence, it’s vile.

  4. Eric Buchroeder

    At least she gives the holier than thou someone to look down upon.

  5. Seek the Truth

    Obama admits he’s a Muslim and only recants from help from by an enabler.
    I know I NEVER mistakeningly referred to myself a Muslim or anyone else I know other than obama. What about Dan, you know anyone who ‘mistakeningly’ said they were a Muslim?! I didn’t think so.
    And how do you know, how does anyone know, his Muslim father or his Muslim adoptive father didn’t christening him Muslim or whatever it is one does to become a Muslim?

    • Dear God, please don’t take this thread in that direction.

      • Seek the Truth

        Who took this thread in this direction?! Dear God man, are you unaware of what you wrote above? Seriously Dan, it was YOU who wrote it first and since you did I will gladly reply.
        And it obvious you didn’t answer my point blank question; have you EVER known another ‘brilliant’ adult call himself a Muslim who wasn’t?
        Have you?… Chirp, chirp, chirp.
        But the enablers will ridicule and discredit me instead of addressing the issue.

      • Dan, it was your own needless remark that started this. Don’t complain,

    • I heard Obama is jewish!!

    • The Dude Abides

      Hey Bozo, our President’s father was a Muslim and he is a Christian. He was born in Hawaii and has a wonderful family. Yes, my dear racist, he is BLACK and SMARTER THAN YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  6. Eric Buchroeder

    Nothing for “At least she gives the holier than thou someone to look down upon”? Nothing!!!!! Ah C’mon!!!!!!

  7. Eric Buchroeder

    Look at what the cat Dragone!!!!

  8. Eric Buchroeder

    Holy Shiite!!!! Do they sell burkhas at the Goodwill????

  9. B Hussein O is a Muslim.
    B Jesus O would be a Christian.
    Do you need more clues? Ask Israel.

  10. Looks like your “Dear God” comment turned on the Religios (sic). 🙂
    Ya gotta be careful, Dan. Words have Power.

    • Seek the Truth

      With all due respect Mr.Feeley, it doesn’t have to do with turning on the religious, it has to do with ridiculing and discrediting by association so the lie(s) cannot be discussed in an analytical or critical way to find the truth.
      You’ll notice not one single person, Dan included, will consider why Obama would call himself a Muslim if he’s not. Why won’t they even discuss the possibilities of why Obama ‘mis-spoke’ even after they (Dan) brought it up?
      Especially since his father and step father both were and he went to a Muslim school in Indonesia, so it’s not like it’s completely out of the realm of possibilities.

      • Verily, I used “Religios” and (sic) to indicate a make believe group who are not religious. It was like a ha ha. Your remarks have merit. Mine meant no harm to any true believer. Sorry if my spoof wasn’t clear.

      • He’s not a Muslim. He has repeatedly identified himself as a Christian. Not even sure why you’re bringing up nonsense like this, and in an entirely illiterate form at that.

  11. Back to Ms. Dragone, away from politics…I find the tag line to this story sad, funny and ironic. All someone like Ms. Dragone has to do is say to put this whole thing to rest is, “I wish them only success” (speaking of Goodwill). She doesn’t need to comment any further.

    All of this media relations/PR stuff that corporations pay millions to experts to learn to say the right thing. All it comes down to is what Patrick Swayze said in the movie “Roadhouse”, be polite! Why is that so hard?

  12. Dan lead the thread in the direction of Obama’s religion. He should not be surprised at the response. Dan made this about politics and moved the focus away from a local issue.

    • Emma, get a life. We understand he was joking. That’s one reason we love about Dan Woog, his way with words and his sense of humor. If you want to attack Dan, start your own blog.

  13. Eric Buchroeder

    Dan used a figure of speech to illustrate a point that was core to his original topic. But in Amerika today, everybody (regardless of what political side they’re on which is what I think was Dan’s point in using the figure of speech about Obama’s religion) is looking to make the discussion about religion and/or race and to use one or the other to discredit their adversaries.
    Tina Dragone has embarrassed herself enough and is wisely staying out of it. Look at all the people who took advantage of Dan’s opportunity today to paint themselves as something more righteous than she is. People who live in glass McMansions shouldn’t throw stones. Tina Dragone shouldn’t think that she is more entitled to make a buck than Goodwill is or that the bucks she takes in are any better than Goodwill’s.

    • Yes it is too bad that Dan decided to make this discussion about religion and race.

      • Eric Buchroeder

        No, its too bad that you can’t make an oblique reference without someone turning it into a debate on religion and race.

        • No it is YOU that can’t accept that was DAN who wanted to rehash an old story and who turned this into a political,racial and religion issue.

          It was DAN who decided this has to do with Obama and his religion.

          Now go back to your Sunday New York Times.

          • Eric Buchroeder

            I read the Cincinnati Enquirer and the Wall Street Journal. When I want to see what too much money/too little common sense has descended to in my hometown I read Dan’s blog and I thank you for that. I think Dan would probably agree at this point that the epic saga of Tina Dragone to save the 1% from the evils of an out of control charity-real estate complex was probably played out several months ago.

            • You can’t escape the politics can you? Now everyone who goes to Goodwill in Westport is the 1%. Thank goodness there is Dan’s blog to keep your political beliefs in focus,

              • Eric Buchroeder

                Well, no, you can’t escape the politics but you can escape the obvious. I was associating Tina Dragone with the 1% not those who patronize the Goodwill. I was associating those who begrudge the Goodwill their place at the trough of commerce in Westport with the 1% if that’s what you meant.

          • Malarkey! Dan made a quick aside to something that compares regarding the absurdity of believing one thing over another, and you and some others want to say he “made it about Obama”? Get a clue!

          • It’s you, anon–too bad you can’t even have the dignity to identify yourself!

            Dan did NOT make this thread about Obama by saying this:

            “Perhaps she hung up on me. Maybe we got cut off? (What you believe probably correlates to whether you think President Obama is a Muslim or Christian.)”

            THAT is not making it about Obama and religion. That is an aside, a allegory, to compare two situations. If Dan had said “if you think we got cut off, I have some real estate to sell you at the bottom of the ocean” the topic would not have been switched to oceanography or real estate fraud! Nor was the topic wasn’t switched to Obama, religion, or politics with this comment.

    • It was not a figure of speech, it was a dliberate reference to an issue unrelated to the ostemsible sunbject at hand. Dan knew exactly what he was doing. “Amerika” how sophomoric.

      • Have you never heard of an offhand remark, unrelatetd to the topic, to try to prove a point? It’s absurd to say “Dan brought the conversation in that direction” by referencing briefly and obliquely another incomprehensibly unbelievable assertation that some people nevertheless incomprehensibly believe.

  14. Let’s cut the Dragone some slack. An historic restaurant is closing. Now would be the perfect time for an upscale retailer to make that part of the Post Road a focal point rather than a drive-by on the way to SnS. Goodwill ain’t even Gimbles, so she speaks her mind, and we trash her for her candor. From a zoning and Town development perspective, she nailed it. The new Goodwill store is a retail joke. They “merchandise” the shoes BY COLOR! Not by size! Are you kidding me? And they have jammed in closeouts and a $3,000 couch. 3, yes three, unisex dressing rooms in a store FILLED WITH LADIES GARMENTS. FUBAR!!!

    We should have listened to her incisive, politically incorrectly spoked, remarks.
    Bet she’s a fun drinkin buddy!

    Back to da Muslims ! 🙂

  15. Probably not going toTina Dragone...

    Right on Eric.

  16. The Dude Abides

    Ms. Dragone needs to go to charm school. My lady is boycotting her store like a flea on a Rush. Speaking of Goodwill,however. I was asked how they could afford to pay 3 million for the piece of property their new store sits?? I googled them and found their annual revenue to be 3.4 billion!!!!!! HOLY LAMPSHADE BATWOMAN!!!!! 74 million donations a year!!! Their CEO makes 400K a year. My tag sale will be next weekend!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  17. Eric Buchroeder

    Good Woodward/Bernstein work Dude. I guess anonymous was right and I was wrong. Goodwill IS part of the 1%.

    • And so what?

      • Eric Buchroeder

        Say what again!!! I dare you. I double dare you. They speak English in What?

      • The Dude Abides

        So what? Goodwill purports to be charitable organization when in fact, most of the its income goes to salaries. Unlike the Salvation Army, its affect on the less fortunate is minimal. It is a corporate dragon cloaked in good will (excuse the pun).

        • Not the point. The salaries and compensation are a matter of public record in most cases if they file a 990. If you think the officials are paid too much, don’t go to Good Will.

        • Eric Buchroeder

          Dude! What ain’t no country I ever heard of. Say What again!!! Marcellus Wallace will have some home-boys to get medieval on ‘yo ass.
          (anything can be turned racial if you know how)

  18. Westporter Since '03

    I think Ms. Dragone should look at Goodwill’s move as a positive one…
    indicating that the Westport of yore is still alive and well, where a McMansion can co-exist comfortably next to a shack (or “bungalow” if you will). There are many parts of our town that is still true (just look around as you drive the streets !).

    Besides, the worst thing I’ve ever witnessed at Goodwill (in its former location) was a woman urinating in the changing room (I believe she was mentally ill — not incontinent). But she also did not appear to be the type of person who would meander into the Dragone’s lair…

    And props to the Goodwill staff who were cheerful, efficient and took it in stride, appearing with a mop and cleaning bucket (“Code Yellow in dressing room #3″… !)

  19. 03, you are TOO funny! Hope Dan’s Dudes understand ya.

    BTW, to your shack/bungalow spoof: a beach bungalow is always beautiful and desirable and so can never be a shack, no matter the state of repair.

  20. Old and Grey

    What is clear to me is that too many people have too much time on their hands. Talk about making a mountain out of a molehill! Sheesh.

  21. Can't Drive 55

    How can one really have too much time on their hands??? Is that feasibly possibly or a puritanical judgement cliche??

  22. Tina rants about Goodwill yet directly across from her tony store is a septic service provider, trucks, tanks and all. It sounds like she would be happier in Greenwich on the Avenue. BTW, she doesn’t seem to know that Westport residents are part of the riff raff that sometimes shops at Goodwill, where you are welcomed with a hello.

  23. Eric…you are right on the money…Dan….you are right that everyone should lighten up…and Emma…I want my parking space back!

  24. Most importantly….Tina…call Dan back….I hear he is a nice guy…the neighborly thing, like others have said would be to wish Goodwill the best of luck and be happy for them have created an efficient site plan and building creating a safer Post Road by the old Goodwill site. Anyway, you just never know how many customers might return to your store…

  25. Eric Buchroeder

    That was from Pulp Fiction too (in case you were wondering)

  26. Do you actually think Obama is a muslim?

    • Seek the Truth

      Nerd, Obama SAID he was a Muslim in the clip above, his father was a Muslim, his step father was a Muslim and he went to a Muslim elementary school in Indonesia. The poll you are citing was from a very biased poll that even Nutting lib Chuck Todd of MSNBC said was faulty and dishonest.
      So quit making excuses for your boy and consider some evidence.
      Exit question – Has anyone here ever heard a Jew say he was a christen?
      Has anyone ever heard a christen call himself a Jew?
      That’s what I thought.
      Yet we have the ‘smartest’ man ever known to the media and liberal elites and this ‘christen’ mistakeningly calls himself a Muslim (and doesn’t catch it!)…hmmm…I’m not quite buying it.
      Nerd, do you think he was ever a Muslim and perhaps converted? Or do you just buy whatever any politician and his pr reps say? If so, does that naive courtesy extend to republicans too or are you just a partisian one sided hack who only believes democrats are looking out for your best interest and would never lie to you?

      • Are you kidding? Have you never once misspoke in your life? It’s called a slip of the tongue…Why would a president lie about his faith? How could a president lie about his faith. You probably believe his birth certificate is a forgery as well. And so what if he’s a Muslim? Don’t tell me that in this day in age you cannot live together and let a man of another faith lead you. If you truly believe he is Muslim, how has it affected his public policy decisions? Do your research…He studied at a Muslim elementary school for one year, a catholic school for two. He was baptized in the Trinity United Church of Christ, a church that values freedom of the individual over adherence of faith. He has continuously said and written that he grew up in a household that was not very religious.

      • Bobbie Herman

        This has become totally ridiculous. Dan made a wisecrack, and you’re jumping all over him for it. The President “misspoke,” just as he did when he referred to 57 states. How many slips of the tongue have been made by the present Republican contenders, as well as GWBush? Far more.

        And, I believe it’s spelled “Christian.”

      • Ever heard of freedom of religion? Who cares if Obama is reading the Quran or the Bible. . . I personally think he reads neither. But that is all irrelevant. Obama is worldy, superbly educated, and tolerant, unlike yourself. Attacking his character is beside to point, critique his policy if you want to talk politics.

        Ever heard of freedom of the press? Dan was making a joke and perhaps sometimes he throws in a little of his own political beliefs just to stir things up. This is HIS blog. If you don’t agree with him, well. . . too bad.

        I’m voting Romney 2012. It sounds like you might be too, but for all the wrong reasons.

  27. It has been a surreal ride today here at 06880.

  28. To the founding member of the Flat Earth Society. What would it matter if he were Muslim?

    • Flat Earther

      I would rather him be a Muslim than a Christian follower of Reverend Jeremiah Wright.

  29. Eric Buchroeder

    How much longer do you think we can make this thread Dragone? Get it???? Hahahahahahahaha!!!!!!!

  30. Westporter4ever

    I think everyone should read the attached….Dan, your right alot of people can’t take a joke anymore!!! I’m not a big fan of Bill Maher..but what he says is SOOOO TRUE!!

    • Thanks for the Bill Maher link. The guy is amazing. When we agree, he’s brilliant, and then there are the times I can’t fathom his rants and I know he’s nuts. That’s why we listen to Rush, Imus, the Shock Jock Stern, et al. They say things that we think, but are “afraid” to speak. :-). It amuses us.

  31. Gwen Dwyer Lechnar

    Everyone, please see Bill Maher’s “Stop Apologizing”, the gist of which is no one can say anything anymore without bringing out some self-righteous priggishness from someone.
    On Goodwill, I would be interested to see the FACTS and not anecdotes about where all that $ goes. I’m not too familiar with their operation.The Salvation Army, on the other hand, I know for a fact has saved the lives of actual people I know(still anecdotal, I recognize, but somehow when the anecdote is yours…)
    And on Ms. Dragone, I’d have to say she certainly does seem to sum up all that’s gone wrong with Westport.

    • Longtime Westporter

      I checked but unfortunately each Goodwill is in a certain area (like the Humane Society) so one can’t check out their ratings. The CT or NY areas aren’t listed. I did check the North CA area and some others and they get a 4-star rating. I do know they give out lots of jobs, but Gwen is right that the Salvation Army does an even better job at that.

      • Longtime Westporter

        I meant that there is not a national Goodwill (or Humane Society) organization to check up on.

      • Unfortunately, the Salvation Army has a reputation of being very strongly anti-gay. This is from the Huffington Post (

        “The (Salvation Army) has a record of actively lobbying governments worldwide for anti-gay policies — including an attempt to make consensual gay sex illegal.”

        Indeed, as (Bil) Browning points out, the group’s position statements reveal a somewhat rigid outlook on LGBT lifestyles. “Scripture forbids sexual intimacy between members of the same sex,” one statement reads. “The Salvation Army believes, therefore, that Christians whose sexual orientation is primarily or exclusively same-sex are called upon to embrace celibacy as a way of life. There is no scriptural support for same-sex unions as equal to, or as an alternative to, heterosexual marriage.”

        However, the statement does go on to note, “Likewise, there is no scriptural support for demeaning or mistreating anyone for reason of his or her sexual orientation.”

  32. Eric Buchroeder

    Gw(h)en did you move to Westport? Its fun taking Tina and Dragone her through the mud isn’t it!!! (watch me beat this dead (w)hor(s)e to death.
    As the stainmaster in chief once said: Tina will pay for her sins til after the last dog dies.

  33. Angel Moroni

    When I read 06880 posts I have a sense of how many comments they will likely draw, so I was suprised that a Tina Dragone note (and I remembered the original) would hit 80. Until I started reading them. I laughed to the point of tears. You know, Barack Obama might secretly be Mormon and even he might not know it.

  34. Gwen Dwyer Lechnar

    @Eric: Afraid I have to echo Doug’s “huh?” But if I catch the burden of your lay, you seem to be implying that as someone not currently residing in Westport, I shouldn’t comment on what goes on there?Even were we to grant that, I grew up in Westport, okay? I left the area in ’96, and have made two visits since then—one last summer and one the summer before. I can tell the difference! Of course, everywhere has changed, and most people don’t think the changes are for the better in the town where they grew up–unless they come from, say, Pittsburgh (here we go Dan!Tho I can’t see too many Westporters whomping up outrage over that remark, there will almost certainly be a humorless few, right?)We confuse our childhood with where it took place. That said, I repeat that in my view Ms. Dragone’s conduct (is that better?) absolutely represents what’s gone wrong with Westport.

    • Flat Earther

      I loved living in Pittsburgh. Great cost of living and wonderful people. It is not anywhere near as bad as say, Cleveland!

      . . . just kidding about “The Cleve”.

    • Eric Buchroeder

      I’m sorry. By the time I was posting in your area I was getting (pun)chy and having cheap thrills beating the hell out of Tina’s last name. No issues with what you were saying. Unfortunately, Westport has gone from a town where everybody knew and respected the retailers to one where no one has a clue in either direction what many of the retailers are about. Obviously there are exceptions, like the Mitchell’s. I learned some things about the Goodwill and the Salvation Army that give me pause. Dan never knows what his topics will turn up. Kind of like dredging the Saugatuck.

  35. Gwen Dwyer Lechnar

    Me again. I wanted to address the Salvation Army stuff separately.I am very disappointed to hear what you report, Dan. And surprised, too, as one of the friends of whom I spoke, whose life I believe was saved by those folks, is gay and he never said a word about that. He must not have been subjected to it, because believe me, he is not the type to have left it alone if he had been. Maybe it’s a case of the official platform being wink-winked at on the local level, i.e., the actual person-to-person level, but it remains appalling. How these people can keep a straight face cherry-picking the Bible for quotes that support their position is a mystery to me. What do they have to say about–oh, I think it’s in Isaiah but I’m no expert, anyway it informs the faithful of the exact price they can charge when selling their eldest daughter into slavery. “Even the Devil can quote scripture”.

  36. slaythadragone

    I pee’d in Tina’s fitting room