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Saltaire Summery
Volume 49, Issue 10
By Hugh O’Brien

Suddenly!

The end! Summer's over. Well, almost. There it was, rambling along, then, blam! Like hitting a brick wall. Or local metaphors: like being beaned by a home run on Broadway. Like the slam of the judge's gavel when you're convicted of night bike riding. (I didn't say this had to reflect reality.) Like being informed your chit book's empty. Now there's reality. Point is, you get the point.

And when you're on a two-week schedule, the reality of finishing up strikes even earlier. By about a week, actually. In fact, I'm unclear (unusually!) as to whether this really is THE last column of the season; it's sure to be the last in the run-up to Labor Day weekend; so either way we'll treat it as our five star final because most of what there is to impart affects us right into the beginning of, sorry to use the word, fall.

Immediate Attention Please!

On Saturday, Sept. 3, there'll be a Saltaire fund-raiser held for George Hafele, who, as mentioned throughout the paper during the summer, is running for the seat in the County Legislature being relinquished by Angie Carpenter (thanks to the dumbness of term limits). George, the vice president of Fire Island Ferries, is a familiar figure to most islanders from his hard work, public-mindedness and courtesy over the years, helping keep Ferries' complex operations operating to everyone's benefit. More important, he knows the particular problems of F.I. while understanding the mainland's too, which puts him in a unique position to assist “both sides” (I dislike that term here as it sounds so adversarial, something a lot of people in fact feel about the “other” group; one of George's great strengths is that he can bring all elements of the constituency together by helping them see that the well-being of the “mainland” is inextricably tied to that of Fire Island -- and vice-versa). He knows the district, islands Long & Fire, the people, the businesses, the problems, the potentials. He is, in short, exceptional in this regard, and would be a most worthy successor to Angie C.

So join us in helping elect George as our next Suffolk legislator this November. Come to the funder —that's Saturday the 3rd, from 5-7 p.m. at the home of Steve & Kathy Goldstein, 210 East Walk, at the farthest eastern point of Saltaire, just before you run into the farthest western point of Fair Harbor, along the cove. A $50 contribution is requested. And special thanks to one of the most thoughtful, generous and community-spirited couples we know, Steve and Kathy, who are so kind as to open their home to this important event; like the Larsons for Angie the other week. But all for a good—and necessary—cause. The future of Fire Island is anything but secure. Pressing problems exist throughout this district and all Suffolk, as a glance at the papers will inform you. More than ever, we need sympathetic, knowledgeable and responsible leadership. George Hafele will provide it for us—for ALL of us. Please—attend! And, later on, vote.

And as a reward for contributing your might to the cause of a better Suffolk government, you can mosey down to the Saltaire firehouse next weekend for the department's annual PANCAKE BREAKFAST, Sunday 9/4 from 8 till noon. Pancakes made according to our secret recipe, or at least it was a secret until the framed, embossed copy of the formula was swiped from the kitchen wall and developed into a multi-million dollar frozen food item available in your grocer's freezer, which is primarily why we still have to do fund-raisers ourselves. Capitalism. Well: in addition to said freshly-made flapjacks, there'll be everyone's faves, sausages, cereals, o.j., coffee (caf and decaf), syrup (caf and decaf), Danish pastries, Norwegian kippers, Swedish Fish and whatever else comes out of the Ikea larder, plus the usual jams, jellies and butters. All for a ridiculously low price which we haven't figured out yet. What was it last year? $3 & $6, I think. Whatever it was, it was tough doing the math, I remember that. You know, “six adults and four children”, that kind of thing. ($48, but it just took me 15 minutes to work out). Probably the same this time, which means I can haul out my arithmetic tables from last year as cheat sheets. Or maybe this is a job for one of our auxiliary members now. Anyway, bring an appetite -- and singles.

Labor Day Show!

Never fails, no matter how close a shave it begins to look, they always come through. Sign-ups start this Friday, 8/26, beginning at 12 noon, or immediately following the closing ceremonies for the camp. The posters say, “Sing! Dance! Tell jokes!

Perform skits! Play musical instruments!” You have to do all of that? Tough audition. Sounds like an order given by a barroom bully to a tenderfoot in the old west, you know, while he was firing a gun at the at the guy's feet. “Sing! Dance! Ya varmint!” Okay, before this becomes an all-out Yosemite Sam fest, sign-ups are at the Yacht Club at or shortly after noon, followed no doubt by a week of exhilirating exhaustion as the show gets thrown together for its one and only scheduled performance on Friday, Sept. 2, at 7:00 p.m. at the Club. For info call Hillary (8906), Deborah (5757) or Seth (0138). Each number preceded by the invariable but unstated 583. Oh, and an additional sign says that teens or adults with musical talents are needed for the LDS; this poster's punctuated with question marks: Sing? Play guitar? Keyboard? Electronic/acoustic? Harpsichord? Lyre? Contact Leyla or Sandy (9075) or Hillary (8092), whose phone really stands to be busy, to volunteer your services. Good job, good show, break a leg (figuratively only), and audience, make it a part of your weekend.

As noted, camp comes to its annual end this Friday, and the Library shuts its services, albeit not is doors, for the season the week following. I believe there's one more Nature Conservancy show on, this weekend, Saturday the 27 at 10:30 a.m. at the gazebo, the delayed reptile exhibit; I didn't see any posters up about it at the start of the week, but some dim memory woozes into a level of consciousness to remind me of that. Check for signs. Broadway, or harass Mr. Jones. Check.

Other ritual closings and contractions to come.... Post Office, Thursday, 9/8, ...Saltaire Market, Sunday, 9/11,...Doctor's office, no regular service or hours after Labor Day, though Dr. Bob will be in attendance sporadically till the end of October; check with Security... Mondays-only collection of refuse resumes the week of Monday the 12th (Tuesday if Monday's a holiday —by the way, when you close upshop later this fall, try to get your trash cans stored away for the winter so they're not out rolling around in the wind and rain and snow and alligators all year)... Lifeguard service dwindles down to weekends only, as needed and available, through near to the end of September -- and while we're on that subject, another public thank-you to the best-trained band on the beach, under the direction of Rich Wilde; we've got about the safest and best-patrolled bay and ocean fronts on Long Island, due to our crews; go up and thank them if you think of it.

Fresh from an unprecedented Jogathon triumph (more below), the SCAA's calendar, alas, also begins its wind-down, with just two events remaining. The Sand Castle contest (is “sand castle” one word, likefirehouse, or two, like “sand castle”?) will be held Saturday, Sept. 3, judging to begin off B'way beach more or less promptly at 3 p.m., but construction had better start much earlier, sort of like with the pyramids, if you're to be ready on time; as neither time, as we all know, nor tide, as is especially the case in this instance, wait for nobody nohow nowheres. Rain date is Sunday the 4th, same hour. Hurricane date is...later. And probably around Harbor Prom. Peering far ahead into the mists of October, SCAA's Halloween Party will spook out Saturday, October 22, at 3:00 at the Village Hall. ( 3 a.m. would be cool and appropriate, but it is, regrettably, p.m.) But, as frequently advised this summer, no 10K Run this year. Not enough runners, I guess. Those T-shirts and misprinted trophies may yet become valuable collector's items, like something from the Franklin Mint. Ooooh! Thanks to Clare Briody and crowd from the SCAA for their hard work on the year's events.

And the SYC -- notice that 7 of the 12 entries in its August calendar begin with the word “last”? A sampling... Last barbecue, Friday, 8/26,... Last Landlubber race, Sunday, 8/28,... Last lunch, Monday, 8/29,... Last bridge night, Monday, 8/29,.. .Last dinner, Wednesday 8/31,... Last classic movie, WEDNESDAY -- note, NOT Thursday, 8/31. Etc. I can hear the staff sighing, “At last!” Women's Doubles, this weekend, and if this is indeed our “last” column, winners will be stored in the memory bank till next May. Meanwhile, sailing, golf and other races, tourneys and outings are still to be held over L.D. weekend, along with two critical annual do's—the Commodore's Dinner, Saturday, Sept. 3, and the Annual Meeting, Sunday at 6 p.m. -- back, I'm happy to say, in the evening hours where it belongs (the pancake breakfast has kept many of us away from the proceedings for four years). The Meeting will feature the usual awards, trophies, honorable mentches, plus Sandi Jones's slides and somebody's 6-ft. heroes -- Leggio's? Whoever, note to staff (as if they needed reminding): be prepared for this crowd; better order like 62 of 'em if you're to avoid a food riot. Jeez. Free food in this place. Like bringing out a sack of cornflour in Darfur.

Further on through next month, the Club bar will be open weekends (Fri. & Sat. nites, with one or two exceptions), with the pot luck dinner presently set as the closing ceremony on Oct. 1—though there's a possibility this might switch with the Fire Dept.'s annual dinner at the joint, now scheduled for the 24th. Keep posted. Time here to offer still more thanks and appreciation to Commodore Carole Sirovich and her Board, to the house, tennis and sailing staffs, who keep the place together and moving, and Tom Field, who lashes the whip, drives the cart (a permit at last!), and generally keeps tabs on everything, except who's won the tennis tournaments.

Couple of things before we diverge into sports and athletic comps....My error, the most recent of several thousand—was Julia English who donated 10 inches of her beautiful hair to Locks of Love, and it's still a thoughtful and generous thing to have done.

Also, be reminded that construction of the new dock will commence after Sept. 15. Only the main dock, the ferry dock, will be rebuilt this winter; it was decided to postpone reconstruction of the west dock, the smaller one, until the winter of '06-'07 to ensure that the work could be done properly, with the greatest care; if we had to do both docks in one winter, and there were weather-related delays (i.e., ice, which if construction had been going on last year would have held up rebuilding by six weeks or more), the work -- and the loss of the use of at least the west dock -- might have dragged on into July. This way, the job's done right, and with breathing room -- and at not one cent in additional cost to the Village, thanks to Mario Posillico's negotiating skills. But for the present, this means you'll have to take your wagons off the big dock, and, if your boat slip is there, sail off into the sunset, by Sept. 15, so the work can begin. Notices will be posted on the bb's and website, boat owners will be notified, every household and resident reminded in time. Alternate sites for wagons this fall will be tossed together, but this winter, plan to leave your wagon at your house (a good idea every year anyway). Ferries will embark and disembark at the west dock (freight will be offloaded along the bulkhead). It'll all be a bit jumbled and jerry-rigged these coming months, but the result will be a gleaming, solid, sturdy dock that will take anything the elements or July renters can throw at it, at least until 2072, according to the specs, when I guess it'll collapse in a heaving, rusty, splintered mass and our descendants can apply for federal aid from President George Bush VIII but they won't need boats anyway because by then they'll be using dematerializers to travel across the bay and besides Fire Island probably won't be here any longer thanks to global warming which Cheney says doesn't exist so we've got nothing to worry about after all, so, tough luck, descendants.

Mosquito spraying: as of this writing, still at hand, hampered by the existence of only one helicopter in all Suffolk Co. (George Hafele: take note), is on a tight spraying schedule. Preliminary ground work has been done, but full aerial spraying, promised, should descend from the clouds soon, possibly before this issue hits the stands, and the three people loitering in front of them. Notices will be distributed to every household, and signs posted in bulletin boards and cyberspace, in time for you to know what will happen and when, and take any needed actions. Spraying is usually done in early evening, before sunset, when mosquito activity is at its greatest. Best precaution, stay indoors, windows shut, for a half hour after spraying. But get full and detailed info from the above-named sources, or check with the village office at 5566. For God's sake, whatever you do, don't listen to me! Mosquito dunks still available up at the office, though. Listen to me.

Now, the latest sport results. Quick one first—the Men's Doubles were (was?) won by Steve Carroll & Ben Terk, over Roland LaFontaine & Bob Reid, the other week. A possible correction, more likely an ammendation, was told me by Pete Hull, who was told by Chris Wright that his father, Robin Wright, told him that it was he (Robin) who actually pitched the first perfect game in Saltaire history, not Harold Weinzweig a couple of weeks ago. However, intense questioning of Peter (hey, Pete, the nails will grow back), elicited the fact that Robin's assumed feat apparently occurred in pre-League days, i.e., prior to the League's formation in 1971, so that Harold's record is intact -- no * in these record books. This came out when Pete said he heard Robin's triumph came in a “Marine Walk vs. somebody” game, and I was appalled that Pete didn't recall the old “Marine Walk Versus The World” games of the '60s, which were infamous. I realize this is getting into pre-history around here, or archeology or maybe paleontology or one of those sciences which El Presidente and Tom Delay and the Discovery Institute and other brains claim don't have any validity as the whole business was simply created with a wave of the Divine wand 6000 years ago, but, there it is. (Evidently Bush doesn't catch the irony of his professed belief in “Intelligent Design” and his own presence on this planet.) Still, there was a '60s around here, and Marine Walk fought it every step of the way.

Ralph's Soccer!

Scores published this year! R.P. printed out complete rosters of all players, unfortunately way too many names to print, but the short of it is the 7th Annual Soccer Cup was won the weekend of Aug.13/14 by the White Team, which bested the second-place Blues in a hard-fought match. Members of the winning Whites were Dan and Eli Cantor, Luc Bruggeman, Josh Raeben, Joey Rappaport, Andrew Weisman, Jon Wolfe, and Bill and Ethan Zimmerman. Luc was named MVP for the Whites, Dave Swiedler for the Blues. John Merchant of the Blues took the Sportsmanship Award, but then returned it to the real winner and got a good conduct medal instead. Kidding! On to #8.

Finally, the Jogathon

As ever, winners suffer the ignominy of being in print after doing all that hard labor and receiving a fine T-shirt and perfectly-lettered (maybe one exception) trophy Sunday. Trivia first, from organizer Gordon Medenica... record entries for both races this year, 97 for the 1 mile and 62 for the 3 1/2...most of the increase in the former from young kids... if similar numbers turn out next summer they may run the one-mile in two stages (what, one group runs a half mile and the other the second.