Roundup: Mindful Drinking, Car Thefts, Olympics …


It’s no secret that alcohol consumption has soared during the pandemic.

What is a secret is that few people have talked about it.

Westport Together — the town’s health and wellness alliance — wants that to change.

On February 17 (7 p.m., Zoom), they’re sponsoring an online roundtable discussion. “Mindful Drinking: Reimagining Our Alcohol Habits & How They Impact Our Relationships” includes local residents talking about the role of alcohol in Westport culture, and its impact on ourselves and friends.

Click here for more information, and to register.


Yesterday morning at 7:40, a car was stolen from the Playhouse Square parking lot. It was soon involved in an accident near the office building across from Fire Department headquarters, though the car thief escaped.

Around the same time, a wallet was stolen from a vehicle parked near Trader Joe’s.

In both cases, the cars were unlocked. The vehicle that was stolen had the key fob inside.

These incidents are astonishingly common in Westport. For a town that prides itself on its schools, the simple lesson of “lock your vehicle — and take the fob with you!” seems to take waaaaay too long to sink in.


Calling all Olympics fans — especially those who follow Westport’s own Julia Marino:

The silver medalist snowboarder has one event left: big air.

Qualifiers are set for this Sunday (February 13), 8:30 p.m. EST, on NBC or USA. However, that may be pushed back to Monday morning at 12:30 a.m., due to Super Bowl coverage.

The big air finals are Monday (February 14), 8:30 p.m. on NBC.

Go for the gold, Julia! (Hat tip: Matthew Mandell)

NBC’s split screen last weekend showed Julia Marino in China, and the Marino family and friends in Westport. (Screenshot/Jeanine Esposito)


For over 75 years, “Soundings” and “QED” have published Staples High School students’ prose, poetry, artwork, photography and more.

The publications have won many awards — including most recently 1st place in the American Scholastic Press Association’s national contest. The publications show off our town’s teenage talent, and inspire countless students to find careers in the literary and visual arts.

For the past couple of years — for reasons both economic (budgets) and medical (COVID) — the magazines have been digital only.

Yet editors and readers know there is something special — still — about print.

To publish on paper, they need money. It’s not a lot — just $3,000 — but they’ve asking for help. Via GoFundMe.

Click here to contribute. And if you need a few dozens reasons why this is important, click here for “Soundings”‘ website.

Make sure you’ve got time, though. Those 7 decades of archives won’t read themselves.

A page from the 1983 “Soundings.”


It’s a lone little tree, stuck in a tiny park with no name on the windy walkway from Old Mill Beach to Compo Cove.

But it’s proud. And these days, the mini-tree is sprouting a special Valentine’s Day heart (and garlands).

Love is truly where you find it.

(Photo/Tracy Porosoff)


George Billis Gallery hosts an opening reception tomorrow (Saturday, February 12, 4:30 to 6 p.m.) for its new show. Adam Noel and Karen Recor are the featured artists, at the Main Street space.

Adam Noel, in his studio.


Gregg Tenser writes: “Some mornings, I found my bird feeder on the ground. I wondered: Did we have a bear?

“Apparently not. Tonight i busted the culprit.”

And there it is — in all its “Westport … Naturally” glory.


And finally … happy 60th birthday, Sheryl Crow!

4 responses to “Roundup: Mindful Drinking, Car Thefts, Olympics …

  1. Arline Gertzoff

    Would Soundings be eligible for a little ARPA funding?/State Cultural Grant as it benefits a large audience

  2. “Stolen” doesn’t seem like the right word for cars which are left with keys or a fob in them. “Given away” seems more accurate.
    And do insurance companies pay in these situations?

    • Bill Strittmatter

      I used to be much more sympathetic about this sort of thing but given the rather high profile and number of thefts of unlocked cars with valuables and/or key fobs left inside over the past few years, it is harder and harder to feel sorry. It would be nice if we didn’t have to, but we’ve learned over time to lock our houses. Shouldn’t be that hard to do the same for cars.

      Having said that, “given away” is a bit harsh. Someone is still committing the crime of theft. I grew up being taught that such things were wrong and that breaking the law led to rather unpleasant consequences. At a minimum, a good beat down from the cops if they caught you and you tried to get away. I guess not so much anymore.

  3. Insurance should not have to pay a penny for stupidity. It’s sad that our neighbors are inviting crime into the area with open arms. And I’d go as far to say that the car owner should be held liable for the accident too. How is it different from a stolen gun left unsecured? Stolen gun used in commission of a crime? Cars have been claimed to be used as weapons, so how is this different if gun owners who have a gun stolen are criminally liable, why aren’t car owners? Can’t have it both ways! The hypocrisy is becoming unreal.