Category Archives: Totally random

Barnes & Noble Celebrates Easter And Passover

 

We’re Not Sure What’s Right. But This Is Definitely Wrong.

It’s a never-ending debate: Green’s Farms (with an apostrophe) or Greens Farms (without)?

There’s even a sign that says Greensfarms.

But everyone agrees there was more than 1 farm.

Except this, on the Post Road near South Turkey Hill:

 

I Bought A Bottle Of Listerine At CVS. What Happened Next Will Make Tree Lovers Very Angry.

Like the list of troubles afflicting the White House, CVS’ receipts seem to be growing longer every day.

Here’s mine from this morning:

 

The coupons include $2 off for … Listerine mouthwash.

Of course, it expires next week.

“06880” Turns 9. Hmmm, What Kind Of Gift….

Good morning!

Today is no different from any other. Here in Westport you’ll crawl behind a school bus. Your dog will take you for a walk. You’ll click on “06880” to see — well, you never know what you’ll see.

If you’re not in Westport — but somewhere else on the planet — you’ll do your own thing. You too will click on “06880” to find out what’s happening in this wild, wonderful and only slightly weird place you’ve somehow come to know.

That’s the way it’s been since March 6, 2009. For 9 years, I’ve covered it all.

Our beautiful beaches — and their growing crowds. Our wonderful schools, the amazing kids there — and the enormous pressures on them. Entitled drivers, and unsung heroes. The renaissance of Saugatuck, the rise of Bedford Square, and the tumbleweeds on Main Street.

The only sure things in life are death and taxes. I write about them too.

This man is smiling because he loves writing “06880.” (Photo/Pam Einarsen)

Here’s something you may not know: Since that very first post nearly a decade ago, I have not missed a day.

For over 3,200 days — and through nearly 7,800 stories — “06880” has been here. On your desktop, laptop, iPad, iPhone, iWatch, whatever.

The tagline “Where Westport meets the world” means I write about organizations, events, politics, real estate, recreation, people who live here, people who once lived here, people who want to live here, even TV shows about people who live here.

You’ve made nearly 90,000 comments. Together, we’ve made “06880” — the blog — into a true, online community. Every day it lives, breathes and grows.

So does my commitment to it. And to you.

Once a year — on my anniversary — I put out my tin cup. I ask you to help sustain this blog. And me.

You see the stories I write. But you don’t see the research I do. The interviews I conduct. The comments I moderate — and the private emails I respond to. (I answer every one — even from the guy who asked me to post fewer stories, because his inbox was getting full.)

You don’t see the hours I spend scouring the interwebs for photos, the time I spend taking my own — or the photo editing that follows. (You think the latest feature — Pic of the Day — just falls from the sky?!)

Just another Pic of the Day.
(Photo/John Videler)

You don’t see the money I spend on “06880.” I pay to keep it ad-free. I pay for domain mapping. I pay for software upgrades.

And you don’t see that “06880” has become, basically, my full-time job. I’ve gone from a full-time freelance writer to an (almost) full-time freelance blogger.

So: If you like what you read, please consider supporting “06880.” Scroll down — details at the bottom!

Am I worth $1 a month? $1 a week? Perhaps (my choice!) $1 a day!

If  my 7,800 stories have been worth a penny apiece, that’s $78. If half them are worth a dime each, that’s $390. I’ll leave other calculations to you.

I hope that if “06880” has ever

  • made you laugh, cry, think or wonder
  • spurred you to go to an event, read a book, try a restaurant or patronize a store
  • helped you meet a neighbor, or connect with an old friend
  • kept you up to date in a blizzard, hurricane, windstorm or power outage
  • made you feel connected to your new town (or the place you grew up)
  • alerted you to a new housing or zoning development
  • provided a forum for you to rant about an issue, rave about a place, or complain about my own personal politics
  • delivered news about a favorite person, place or thing
  • galvanized you to support a cause
  • publicized your event, book, appearance or concert
  • published your photo
  • honored someone you loved or admired
  • connected you to your hometown from many miles away
  • saved you time or money
  • opened a window on Westport’s history, helped you think about its future, introduced you to someone in town you never knew, or helped you look at someone or someplace in a new way
  • inspired you
  • made you sit up and say “Wow!” (or “Holy f—!”)

— you will consider tossing something my way.

Everyone can contribute — politics be damned. Sure, you know where I stand. But I’ve always given you a voice too.

Just a suggestion.

Thanks for 9 great years. I’ll keep doing what I’m doing, whether anyone sends an anniversary gift or not.

We’ll still have our summer “06880” party at the beach — and I’ll still cover both the beauty and the changes of Compo.

It’s all part of “06880.” It’s my honor and privilege to help share it with you.

You can donate by PayPal: click here. It’s easy, safe — and you don’t even need a PayPal account. If you get an error message, go to www.PayPal.com; then log in (or create an account), and send money from the dropdown menu by entering this email address: dwoog@optonline.net. Or click the “Donate” button on the home page of “06880. You can also donate using Venmo!

Checks can be mailed to: Dan Woog, 301 Post Road East, Westport, CT 06880. Put “06880” on the memo line. It won’t do anything for the IRS, but it may help you remember at tax time why you sent me something.

“38 Minutes Of Sheer Terror”

The alert blared on Anthony Dohanos’ phone a few minutes after 8 a.m.

It was a false alarm. Still, for more than half an  hour Anthony Dohanos — former Westporter, longtime resident of the big island of Hawaii, and son of famed illustrator Stevan Dohanos — had no reason to disbelieve the alert.

Instead, he had every reason to believe he — and everyone else in the state — would die.

“We all said our goodbyes,” he told “06880” this afternoon. He expected the missile — or missiles — to hit within 15 minutes.

It took another 20 minutes or so before the 2nd — and astonishingly more reassuring — message came through.

I spoke with Anthony a few minutes ago. It was 4 hours since the petrifying ordeal. He — and nearly everyone else in Hawaii — was still shaken up.

Another former Westporter — Bill Briggs, 1964 Staples High School graduate who earned fame as the Remains’ keyboardist — is vacationing in Hawaii.

He posted on Facebook:

I’m a little bit of a “prepper.” I says to myself, “We’re screwed!”

No shelters. No civil defense instructions. No nothin’! I had a little bit of extra medication and a really good flashlight but that’s it.

People were freaking out! We kept our cool and figured if it was true we were screwed anyway, so why panic. Incredible degree of ineptitude.

Anthony sent a GIF that’s making its way around Hawaii:

But it may be quite some time before he — and everyone else — can truly relax.

Today’s Most Entitled Westporter Is NOT A Driver!

However, he had to get in his car to earn this sleazeball award.

An alert — and legitimately ticked-off — “06880” reader reports: “some jerk dumped not 1, but 2 Christmas trees in front of our house.”

The reader — who is in great shape physically, but nonetheless one year shy of his 80th birthday — adds: “Anyone who was too lazy to take trees to the town brush center, or too stupid to call the Boy Scouts for free pickup, is really a slob.”

He’s too kind. I’d have used much harsher words.

Happy New Year!

Let’s hope it’s a good one,

Without any fear…

Holiday Thieves Have (Half) A Heart

Last Saturday evening, someone stole Aradh Ana’s son’s backpack from the parking lot of a shopping center.

“They probably thought it had a laptop, iPad or other expensive electronic device,” the Westport woman says. But it only held a homework binder.

The thief kept the backpack. But he or she took the time to find out where Ana lived, drive over, and throw the binder in the front yard of the first house on the road.

A “kindhearted and vigilant” neighbor noticed it in the snow, and brought it over.

“We were upset with the theft. But we were thankful my son got his school binder back,” Ana says. “His class and homework assignments were very important to him.

“It appears these holiday thieves have a heart, but unfortunately not the right mindset. I hope and pray they get the wisdom to stop stealing, start working hard and follow the right path.”

And, she warns, “Stay alert and safe. Lock up your cars while shopping, and also in your driveway. Cheers and happy holidays!”

Nice Crosswalk — Just Don’t Cross!

It only took, oh, a year or so since the Main Street/North Compo/Clinton Avenue improvement project was completed.

But a new crosswalk was finally striped today.

Perfect!

Except for one minor detail:

Hey, no biggie! I’m sure the state will get around to removing it — and the others nearby — soon.

Like, say, a year from now.

Scott Smith’s Concrete Questions

The roads of Westport play an important — if often unrecognized — role in our lives. When we do think about them, it’s in the context of traffic, alternate routes, that sort of thing.

Scott Smith thinks of asphalt and concrete. The longtime Westporter writes:

The autumn flurry of repaving Westport’s road before the asphalt plants shut down for the winter makes me wonder about the status of some other byways around town. I’m thinking of the local streetscapes I travel that are still paved with concrete.

Three spots come to mind: the mile or so along Greens Farms Road between Compo and Hillspoint, and 2 blocks on Riverside — one heading toward the train station, the other from Viva’s to the VFW. Made of poured aggregate cement and laid down in blocks of 20 feet or so, these stretches of old roadway remind me of a time when things were built to last.

Concrete on Greens Farms Road …

But not always. Years ago, while re-landscaping a home I lived in off Imperial Avenue, I dug up a bunch of old concrete blocks. They were odd shapes, most 2 or 3 feet across and all 6 to 8 inches thick, smooth on one side and jagged on the other.

The house was built in 1960, on low-lying property, so I figured they were fill from when construction of the I-95 Turnpike tore through town. The chunks of pavement were a bear to raise up out of the ground, but made great stepping stones. I bet they are still there.

… on Riverside Avenue north of the Cribari Bridge …

It’s probably a state versus town issue, but as I see other local roads in the continual process of getting stripped of asphalt and replaced with new black pavement, I wonder what’s up with these concrete remnants of vintage Westport.

Are there any longtime townies — or people in Public Works — who could let the rest of us know when these roads were first laid down, and how long they might stick around?

… and near the train station. (Photos/Scott Smith)