Saturday, November 04, 2006

Bonanza Restaurant Sold

Well I had this post on earlier and when I went to update it last night I lost the whole thing. Another computer mystery.

Bonanza Restaurants in Delmar, Pocomoke, Milford and Millsboro supposely are being sold. They are suppose to be sold to a group of Koreans? The name is Young Chan Lee (YCL). I don't know if that is one person or several. The sales was to take place last Thursday. The "Management" has not officially said anything to the employees so rumors are running like wildfire. It is assumed since Bonanza is a national franchise it will remain a Bonanza unless the new group decides to turn it into something along the Chinatown Buffets concept. Since there are few non-Asians in the Chinatown buffets the present employees have concerns.

Maybe they will do like the group that brought the Denny's in Fruitland and painted over the "D" and called the new Asian restaurant Benny's. They could do some painting and change "Bonanza" to "Bonsai", as in a small tree or "Banzai" as in Hurrah. Of course both words are Japanese and this whole comment was no doubt politically incorrect.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Pink Flamingo Crisis


Say it isn't so. The company that makes Pink Flamingos has gone out of business. See Flamingos

Those of us who have several Pink Flamingos in their yard know only to well the fade factor of these beloved yard ornaments. They are only good for about two years before you have to replace them or spray them pink again. Where will we find replacements?

Skull found in New Jersey

In today's Wilmington Journal was an article about a human skull that washed up on a sandbar on a North Wildwood beach. Speculation was perhaps it was Anne Marie Fahey skull. She was killed by Tom Capano in 1996 and dumped in the ocean. The attorneys from the Capano case interviewed, including Ferris Wharton, doubted it would be her skull.

Let me say I will vote for Ferris Wharton, but you have to ask yourself would an article referring to Anne Marie Fahey be written if it was not an election year? It was a case in which Ferris Wharton received a lot of attention. I don't think body parts washing up on the New Jersey shoreline is that unusual so any body part would do in an election year but a skull at Halloween time is of particular interest. The article also feed the interest Delaware has on anything concerning Capano and Fahey.

I hope it is Anne Fahey skull. At least the family would have something to bury and reach some closure in this matter.

Fred Harris had a birthday

Fred Harris, noted Purchasing Director for Wicomico County, had another birthday yesterday. One more gray hair on a head rapidly turning gray since he became Purchasing Director.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Trick or Treaters/ All Hallow's Eve/ Halloween




Again this year I had a hoard of children beggin for candy. The night was warm so there were more of them then last year. The most popular costume was pirates and fairy princesses. Instead of trick or treat I got a lot of pirate lingo of Arrr! and Arrgh! which seems to mean Trick or Treat or I will burn your house down. Halloween started with the Celtic Druids around 700BC. It was believed that on the last day of the Celtic year (October 31) evil spirits and the dead roamed the earth and worked mischief among the living. If the living dressed up as a someone else than they could live safely thru the night. Now I can't imagine the Irish in 700 BC having enough clothes to dress up as someone else. Irish Catholics fleeing from the potato famine in the 1840s introduced the Halloween observance to the United States, including the Jack O Lantern which was used to frighten the spirits and protect the household. So tonight we had candy for bribes and our Jack O Lanterns were carved and I awaited for the evil dwarfs that appeared at our door.

My oldest daughter who graduated last Spring from the University of Delaware is going thru withdrawal tonight. Halloween at a college campus is one big party with preparations for it going on for a month before it arrives. So for four years it was big time. It's hell entering adulthood.

I understand the High School was open tonight for Trick or Treat. I have never walked thru the High School on Trick or Treat night as the distribution of duties on Halloween has always been I stay home and pass out candy and my wife takes the kids Trick or Treating.

Back in the 1950's and 1960's Delmar would have a large Halloween party uptown. It would attract between a thousand to three thousand people. I suppose the High School event has taken the place of this party.

I had 106 trick or treaters tonight from 6PM to 8PM. The number I have each year varies depending on the weather and if the High School is having a Trick or Treat night. I actually get more on the nights the High School has their candy night. I suppose the closer you are to the HIgh School the more visitors you get. Some Trick or Treat numbers from past years are;
2005 75
2004 62
2003 67
2002 43
2001 89
2000 118
1999 127
1998 61
1997 77
1996 44
1995 34
1994 112
1993 103
1993 89

Monday, October 30, 2006

Fall Day on Records Pond

Fall Day in Delmar

Comments on October Joint Council Meeting

Let me say, before I begin on my comments regarding the Joint Council Meeting, I have the beginnings of a cold so for the most part the Joint Council meeting was just a large droning headache. I am afraid I did not capture much of the subdue nuances going on.

The meeting started out with Bonnie Luna and Rick Pollitt, Maryland political candidates, giving a brief speech on their positions in their race for office. Nothing outstanding came from either one. Maryland Mayor Niblett did ask Rick Pollitt his position on double taxation. He said he was in favor of giving the town a rebate on over lapping services and if elected would try to put it on the agenda of Wicomico County. The question of double taxation is like a race bias question, it depends on where you are sitting as to your view of it. The idea is; citizens of incorporated towns pay for many of the services already provided by the County, yet they receive a lower benefit from County services than citizens of other areas paying the same level of taxes because city services have displaced the need for county services. The Town should receive a rebate on County Taxes paid as they are paying for the same services twice. Actually the taxpayer should receive the rebate but I am sure it will if it ever comes to past, it will be returned to the Towns and not individual taxpayers. I think the whole idea is foolish as once you leave the town limits you are in the County and as such you are using County services. It is also the same argument people who home school make in regards to paying school taxes.

Delaware Mayor Outten said he had been working thru informal meetings with the Blackwater Creek Developer and when the next Sussex County Council meeting addresses Blackwater Creek again he plans to attend. As you know Blackwater Creek is a proposed development that will consist of 1,179 homes and be built west of town around the intersection of Route 54 and Road 504. It will not be in the town limits, but will have an impact on facilities in town from the Post Office to the school.

Comment: A number of years back Sussex County went thru a big ass deal of renaming roads in Sussex County. Prior to the renaming the roads, the roads were given county road numbers. Now they all have names instead of numbers. It was an expense to Sussex County for road signs and to individual homeowners for an address sign. Yet, when ever a location is given for a development at the Sussex County Council it will be referred to by the "old" road number and not the "new" Road name. So what the hell gives with this?

Mike Kapper appeared to ask for some concession on his taxes. Mike Kapper and Doris Williams own the buildings(s) the Drugstore and laundrymat is in. He is behind on paying his taxes (over $6,500), plus he has a Water bill outstanding of over $3,000. He had a payment arrangement with the town to pay $600 a month on the old taxes. He also has a payment arrangement with Sussex County for old taxes. He has had in the past payment arrangements with the Utility Commission for old water/sewer bills, which he paid. He said he was unable to make the $600 a month payment on his town taxes because he spent the money to improve the building the drugstore is in. He wanted to change his payment arrangement to $300 a month. This problem has been going on for about 5 years. Over an hour was spent discussing it. In the end the town gave in and made a payment arrangement with him of $400 a month. On the Delaware side of town Delinquent taxes do not have a speedy resolution. On the Maryland side of town there is an automatic system of collection of taxes or be sold out for delinquent taxes. It works much better than the Delaware system. Elected officials rarely want to be "bad" guys, but that is what they occasionally have to do. On the Maryland side of town elected officials just throw up their hands and say there is nothing they can do as Wicomico County has taken it over - they don't have to be "bad" guys, they pass the buck. By not enforcing ordinances and financial policies it encourage other people to not pay taxes or to let the building they own fall to pieces. If the taxes are not paid budgeted items are not done do to the lack of cash. In turn taxes are raised to compensate for this and we all pay the delinquent taxpayer's bill. We need elected officials with balls and so for the only one with a pair seems to be Diane Buckley.

The Delmar Diner Annexation was semi-approved, pending approval of Wicomico County Planning and Zoning.

The first reading of the Delmar Zoning Code was discussed tonight. You can obtain a draft copy of it from Delmar Town Hall. It is about 107 pages long. The main discussion was from a developer who wanted smaller yard sizes.

There is a small park on East East Street on the Maryland side of town that needs to be improved. Mrs Hearn, the art teacher at Delmar High School, has been asked to have her art student submit plans on how they would like to see the park. It is to be a viewing park not a sitting in, or playing in park. On November 17th a design will be picked.

The old 7-11 building on the Maryland side of town will be turned into a used car lot.

The fine for parking in a no parking zone has been increased. A grant has been received in the amount of $25,000 for the Police department. A new police car will be purchased with the money.

There are three houses on the Maryland side of town that have had sections of the houses burnt. Arrangements were made to correct those problems.

A street sweeper will not be purchased for the town, instead a pickup truck will be purchased.

In the new developments residents were allowed to hire their own private garbage collectors. Unlike in the old part of town where collection was handled by the town, by way of a contract to a private collector. Due to confusion the town has decided to not allow the new developments to continue to select their garbage collectors. They will have to go with the Town.

About this time my headache got the best of me and I had to leave. I missed the Public comments which is usually the best part of the meeting. Possibly they will mentioned in the approved minutes, which at times is a rewrite of history.

October 30 Utility Meeting Comments

Tonight the Utility Commission had their monthly meeting. All members were present. We have had a vacant spot on the Utility Commission for six months or more. The vacant spot is for a Maryland Town resident. We are still waiting on Maryland Mayor Niblett to make up his mind and appoint someone to it. There is a disadvantage with an even number of Utility Commission members as there is a risk of not having a majority vote on a question. In the summer and during holiday seasons there is a risk of two members being out and than there would not be a quorum to decide any business questions.

The agreement with Tidewater Utilities to service the East side of Route 13 is still in the works.

We had Mildred Bosies from 200 Spruce Street, with her neighbors, come in to tell us about brown water problems she has had since January. The section of Spruce where the problem occurs is on a dead end water line that is not looped back into the distribution system. The line is also the older cast Iron Pipe. We requested Jay Latchum, Public Works Director, to obtain prices on what would fix the problem. She has reported this problem a number of times to Town Hall and attempts by Public Works to fix the problem were not successful.

Another resident complained of brown water on Grove street out by the State Street Park. It is my understanding this problem had not been reported to Town Hall prior to being addressed at tonight's meeting. Public Works is to look into it.

We would like for all residents of the town to report any brown water problems to Town Hall. This way we can map out areas where we need to direct our budget to correcting the problems. To Email Town Hall about problems click Here

Concessions to the Owners of the Old Movie Theater

I did not attend last month's Utility Commission meeting, nor did I attend September's Joint Council meeting. While reading thru the unapproved minutes of the Utility commission I was surprised by the request of Karin and Chris Walter who represents Terra Development, the owners of the old movie theater building. They requested from the Utility Meetings concessions because they are working on that piece of shit they own called the Avenue Building. They requested first, that WATER IMPACT FEES be determined using LAST YEAR RATES. Second, to WAIVE the requirement to pay IMPACT FEES at time of the issuance of the building permits. Third, REDUCE ALL WATER AND SEWER RATES by 50% to all developers in the downtown area. Fourth, REDUCE ALL WATER AND SEWER RATES BY AN ADDITIONAL 20% TO TERRA DEVELOPMENT.

Believe it or not, based on the unapproved minutes, Council Member Buckley made a motion to approve the first two concessions and Council Member Pase and Commissioner Tisinger voted to approve them. As opposed to telling Karin and Chris Walter to clean up that mess or tear it down they have continued to give concessions to the owners of this building. Happily they did not reduce water and sewer rates to the building.

I have not seen the Joint Council Minutes from September so I don't know if they requested TAX Concessions also.

What gets me is the "normal" taxpayer in Delmar continues to pay his/her taxes and only receive part of the services they should receive, but our councilmembers turns around and give some one with a run down property incentives. I guess this is to be expected when no one runs against the incumbent office holders. It is incentive for the hogs to start feeding again.

Council Meeting Tonight

As a reminder the Delmar joint council meeting is tonight at 7PM. In addition the Public Works Meeting is at 6PM and the Utility Commission Meeting is at 6:30PM.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Actors Supporting Politicians

Down in lower Delaware (Can't get any lower) we have been hit with TV Spots from actors, John Walsh and Michael Fox, supporting Delaware politicians and wannabe politicians. Why would a Delaware voter consider the comments made by someone from out of state? In the case of Michael J Fox he isn't even American. Why even more so would someone gave credibility to an actor? These people live in a pampered ass kissing world of make believe not much different from the politicians they support. I just don't know why a voter would give any consideration to an out of state actor and a foreign actor supporting a Delaware candidate.

Blackface

Halloween is approaching, so I guess once again we will hear the cries of outrage when white college students dress in blackface and hold ghetto parties. Blackface has been around for a long time and it will continue to be around. It doesn’t matter if it is insensitive or politically incorrect. There is always a faction who will use it for the outrage value. I tend to think someone born about 1987 (should be college age now) does blackface for the attention it gets them. They were no doubt the same ones in high school who had the loud flashy cars with the expensive music systems. Lets face it none of them have ever attended the blackface minstrel show, which were popular prior to 1960. Other than seeing blackface on older movies (Bing Crosby in "Holiday Inn" comes to mind) none really know anything about it. Some people like to say the people involved in blackface are really rejecting the colleges politically correct codes of conduct. After they have spent so much time with harassment policies, sensitivity workshops, and diversity requirements they are ready to rebel against all of it. Myself, I think it is the same as a 19 year old black youth singing hip hop rap or whatever about killing cops, bitches, whores and feeling his balls as he sing, they simply want attention.

As most people know there is a double standard in the United States today in regards to race bias, discrimination, and hate crimes. The view of the double standard is really quite different depending on if you are black or white. Blackface is considered politically incorrect and a possible race crime but than you have Eddie Murphy who can make himself up as a Caucasian and perform a series of exaggerated "white" stereotypes, and it's not racist, it's comedy. What if the movie “White Chicks” was reversed from paleface to blackface? No doubt there would be very few movie theaters showing it. Blackface Minstrel shows were considered comedy and if today are considered offensive than paleface comedy renditions should be looked at in the same light.

In Delmar, up until the beginning of the 1960’s, the High School band put on a blackface Minstrel show. The VFW also use to hold Minstrel shows at the Delmar High School. They were well attended and individuals in town were known for the characters they played . The Delmar Library at one time had in their “History” room photo albums of the different high school bands in blackface. At Linda's Railroad Cafe is a photograph of the "Cotton Pickers", the High School Band that was part Blackface.

Much to the outrage of tourist and the British government, blackface does continue in Wales and England. Among the groups that do blackface are various Welsh Border Morris Dancers Silurian Morris and a town called Padstow in Cornwall has their Darkie Days on New Year Days and Boxing day. Outsiders and the government may dislike it but the local people seem happy with it.