Saturday, June 03, 2006

Josephine Baker Birthday

Josephine Baker was born today in 1906. She left America in the 1920's to become a star in France. She was a well known singer and dancer in Europe and a marrage to a Frenchman gave her French citizenship. She was decorated for her undercover work for the French resistance during World war II. When she died she was buried with French military honors in Monaco. A couple of her movies have been on Turner Classics Movies.

Susan Dickerson Graduated

On June 2nd in a very crowded gymnasium in Delmar High School Susan Amber Dickerson graduated High School. 105 other members of the Senior class also graduated. She is a member of the National Honor Society.

Naturally after two months of no rain it rained Friday night forcing everyone into the gymnasium. As opposed to having an indoor graduation in an auditorium, in Delmar it has to be in the gym, which is larger than the auditorium, as sports is the emphasis at Delmar High School. The size of the Gym and auditorium is a leftover legacy from the George Stone days when the "new" school which had to built because the "old" school was too small. When the "new" school was finished it had an auditorium 2/3 the size of the "old" school.

I am pleased that all my children are finally out of the control of the Delmar Board of Education.

Susan had an after graduation party that lasted until 7AM the next day. Regretfully her Grandparents, Uncle and Cousin were unable to attend either event.

Friday, June 02, 2006

2006 National Spelling Bee

May I have the definition, please?

I watched the National Spelling Bee on TV last night and found it refreshing. The 10 to 14 year olds who were the contestants actually said "please" and "thank you". The winner was Katharine Close of new Jersey and in second place was Finola Hackett of Canada. I found it refreshing also because it was non athletic and it was individuals, not teams. I liked the way they did that geek think of writing on their arm to visualize the spelling of the word. I could spell none of the words right myself and could only pronounce about two of them. They were just not using Redneck words.

In Delmar it is not unusual for the town to turn out to greet a returning football or softball team. I have never hear of a Delmar Mayor racing around town to have a greeting party for an individual school child that won anything. In the Delmar High school yearbook this year there are 26 pages of sport photos and non of any academic event. What message does this send to the children in Delmar high School? What message does it send to anyone regarding the importance placed in Delmar?

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Shoe Shopping

Like most men my shoe assortment consists of a pair of black ones, a pair of brown ones, a pair of athletic shoes, a pair of boots and a pair of sandals. When I go shoe shopping it rarely takes over a half hour. With a wife and two daughters I found shoe shopping takes on a whole new meaning. Before I caught on to avoid shoe shopping with them it would not be unusual to to dragged from one shoe store to another for two hours and asked my opinion on fifteen virtually identical shoes. There were times I prayed for death.

On our way back from Megan's graduation, my wife and daughter decided to stop at a Burlington Coat factory to look at shoes. I stayed in the car. The first hour was pleasant as I smoked my cigar and didn't have to listen to the grips and complaints about it. The second hour I did begin to wonder if one of them had had a heart attack and been sent to the hospital while I sit in the car. Fear of being trapped into "shoe shopping" prevented me from going in to check. Eventually they came out with "A' pair of shoes, as in one pair. How can anyone take two hours to buy one pair of shoes? If this is normal how much total time in the world is wasted each day on shoe selection?

Joint Council Meeting of May 22nd

Some items from the Joint Council Meeting of May 22nd. There was a smaller turnout than the last few meetings The meeting broke up about 9PM.

The Concerned Citizens gave a check of $120.00 to the council to be forwarded to the Doctor's Museum. This represented profit from the Community yard sale the Concerned Citizens held. A group of children who ran a concession booth also donated a check to the Doctor's museum.

There will be a police car auction on June 10th at 10AM.

In public works Jay L. has interviewed 6 applicants. The hydrant flushing was sucessful.

The Maryland Side discussed the Property Tax constant yield. (see previouis post on this). The 7 or so Wood Creeks residents chimed in at this time about the lack of service they are seeing from the town in woods creek. (They will learn over time about the lack of services Delmar delivers).

The roof of the Pavilion in State street Park has been reroofed. Elite Roofing supplied the free labor to do it.

June 3rd is "Day in the Park"

Joan of Arc died today in 1431

Joan of Arc (Jeanne d'Arc) was convicted and burnt to death, today, in 1431. Joan of Arc was a true Heroine. She died for her beliefs and principles. She was born in 1412. Began hearing voices from God at age 13 and received a mandate from God to drive the English out of France. She evenually defeated the English at Patay. In 1456 a French court decided the burning had been a mistake and in 1920 she was made a Saint.

Best known in the US as a trademark and logo for B&G Food beans. A statement from the B&G Foods website says; "Joan of Arc was an amazing woman – she lived and died for her beliefs. We think Joan would have been proud of the beans that bear her name."

Delmar High School Yearbook

My daughter brought home, today, her Delmar high school yearbook. In the yearbook under the usual information about each graduating senior was sort of a personal philosophy statement. I will list a few selections to show what twelve plus years of education in Delmar has produced.
"You getting on my nerves"
"I've got half a mind to waste you punk"
"It is better to burn out than fade away"
"Life is tough, get a helmet"
"There is always a wild side to an innocent face"
"School is like a toilet, I go because I must"
"Only trust people as far as you can throw them"
"Lay with dogs and you get fleas"
"Drop Dead"
"You are about as useful as a poopy flavored lolli pop"
"Don't let your friends drive Fords"
"Why do today what you can do the day after tomorrow"
"Jesus loves you"

Factory Card and Party Outlet

I stopped by the Factory Card and Party Outlet this morning to renew my supply of Birthday and Graduation cards. When I went to pay for the cards the female clerk asked me for my phone number. Naturally, I refused. Now I could fantasize that the woman is a pervert that has a fixation for old, overweight men; but in reality I am sure my phone number would have ended up to a telephone solicitor. I have never been able to figure why a store whose's purpose is to make money by selling products would gouge their customers more by selling personal information about the customers to outside parties.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Delmar Utility Meeting of May 22nd

The Utility meeting was held early due to the Memorial day Holiday. Among the items discussed was the approval of the budget for fiscal year 2007. Councilpeople Pase, Buckley and Tisinger voted to approve the budget. I voted not to approve the budget. Now the reason I voted against it is the Utility Commission is making more in revenue than they have in expenses. The same as last year I feel the rates should be reduced in order to give the users of the system a break. The arguement the other members of the commission made is equipment needs to be repaired and water and sewer lines replaced so instead of giving the money back by way of a rate reduction it should be used to repair the system. Well the first rule in government is you always spend whatever money you have and ask for more. I agree equipment and lines need to be replaced but, first; we have a depreciation allowance that is part of the rate structure and that is what should be used instead of excess revenue. Second, because things are falling apart it does not mean you fix them all at once. You prepare a plan of water/sewer lines that need to be replaced each year for the next twenty years and that is part of your budget. You don't try to fix everything at once. You follow a plan. The lack of a plan cause all the users of the system to pay more than what they should. I also feel this Mayor and council does a great many planning items that are done in secret so the public does not know about them until it is voted on at a meeting. As an example the private utility to service the East of Route 13 annexed land and potential annexed land was given to the Utility Commission as a choice of which private utility to go with, not should a private utility be used or should we continue to annex land we didn't have capacity to serve.

A change in the way utility bills are sent to landlords and renters was approved. Currently the bill is sent to whomever resides in the house. If the bill is not paid, beside the water being disconnected, the homeowner (landlord) is sent the bill and if it is still not paid, it eventually becomes a lien on the property. The landlord do not like this method as the person renting the house will skip out and not pay the water bill and the landlord does not know it. Frequently it becomes an arguement between the landlord and the town. We decided to try sending the bill to the landlord and let him/her delivery it to the renter. A long time ago when I worked for a water / sewer utility this was also a problem. There does not seem to be an easly solution to it. The downside for the renter is the landlord may and usually does take forever to give the renter the bill, creating late charges or a disconnect.

Several commercial properties are late paying and will be disconnected at the end of the month.

Memorial Day 2006

Memorial day was created to honor the servicemen who died in war. In recent years it has been changed by some people to honor all servicemen. It is not their day. If you were in the military and lived thru a war, it is not your day. It is for the dead, whose life was taken by fighting in whichever war this county is or was involved in. I Salute them for allowing the rest of us to grow old while they remain forever at whatever age they were when they died.

Tracy has a Birthday

Tracy Dickerson turns 36 today. Happy Birthday Tracy

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Megan Graduates

At long last, on Saturday Megan Elizabeth Bell Dickerson graduated from the University of Delaware. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts and Science with a major in Sociology (Law and Society Concentration) and a minor in Spanish. Her Mother and I are proud of her.

Ramona, Susan, Casie, and I left about 4:30 in the morning to attend. It was a long hot day of graduation cermonies with over a thousand graduates. It must be an immense economic boom to Newark, Delaware when graduations occur. Every motel we drove past in the morning was filled. When we left about 5PM, compared to the morning, Newark looked like a ghost town.

It has cost her mother and I in excess of $60,000 for the degree. On Saturday they went thru the cermonies but did not receive a Diploma because at UD, Diplomas are mailed out to the graduates in August. I guess it is one of the disadvantages of going to a large college. To round off our day when we got home we found in the mail a letter from the University of Delaware saying Megan owed a $2.00 library fine and would not receive her diploma until it was paid. There is not many things at UD that are free (you can still breath air for free). I was surprised they didn't charge for the parking and the Graduation programs.

Other Delmar people that graduated are; Matt Porter, Erin Porter, Tessa Newhouse, Jeff Wright, Shyra Stevenson, and Dannaile Holston. I am sure there were others but those were the ones that I was aware of.

I must say when her name was called even I was a little misty eyed, thinking that in a few weeks, with any luck, she will be self supporting.

Howard Dickerson Sr has a Birthday

Howard Lynch Dickerson Senior was born May 28 1919 outside of Delmar. He is the son of Elijah and Rosa Dickerson. He is the father of three exceptional sons. Happy birthday Dad!!