Council retreats from retreats

Published 12:00 am Saturday, September 28, 2002

The newspaper headline suggested that Council will buck tradition, stay nearer home, and spend less money by avoiding hoity-toity resorts. I wouldn’t call it bucking tradition, it’s more like running for cover. They took a beating for behaving like corporate executives, deservedly, and learned a valuable lesson. It’s true that most people do not vote, but that doesn’t mean they don’t pay attention to tax dollar slippage. That last retreat caused most council members to cough up a large portion of their expenses, a sensible thing to do if they want to be re-elected. But not Mr. Brown who seems to live in his own little world, make that small. He’s the guy that insisted on racial balance of the Indian Village task force which chief Bass rightfully considered a slap in the face.

Brown didn’t demand a fair share of red when he went after an equal amount of black and white. Most citizens I have discussed this with consider his action petty as it will serve no purpose other than cause ill feelings. Brown didn’t cough up any expenses for the last retreat, says he would in the future if it is held far enough out of town so he can’t come home at night, and said this, &uot;Local is not going to maximize my time, if it costs me something to maximize my time, that’s fine. I’ll go in my pocket.&uot; Why didn’t he think that way about Tide’s Inn? I do agree with Mr. Brown, and Richard Harris on the subject of the &uot;facilitator.&uot; Do adults wise enough to sit on council need someone to tell them how to get along? If so, for $140 an hour we can get five counselors from the high schools .

This will make you feel better. If you are like me you shudder when you see how the majority of America’s youth is headed. Sex, drugs, booze, earrings on boys, pierced everything on girls, too many unable to read or use numbers. We hear it all the time, see it on TV and in the movies.

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But not to worry about them taking over government. As far back as 1988 they checked to see if our youth is interested in anything other than having fun. Only 44 percent of those aged 18 – 24 are registered to vote. Even better, only 19 percent of that group voted in the last national election. When you boil it down it means that only eight out of 100 under age 24 voted. Hopefully by age 25 they will at least have figured out they need a job.

Apparently America is waking up to the fact that carrying too much poundage will probably shorten life and make a good part of it miserable. Even McDonalds will attempt to assist the overeaters by using less fat to cook its French fries. When an outfit as big as them begins to worry it should scare the large pants off many who have already bottomed out the bathroom scales. Notice, too, how doctors are picking up on it, a few years ago decreasing the size of the stomach was rare surgery. Now it’s becoming as common as a nose job. And while they are removing a good part of the internal food tank they have another doctor run around just under the skin with a type of vacuum cleaner suctioning off the accumulated fat globules. Watching one of those operations on TV is more than I can stand. But I have always wondered why the stomach – why not the mouth? That’s where it all starts. Pulling a chair up to the table is easy. Lifting the fork is easy. But if two thirds of the mouth were sewed shut the entire eating process would of necessity be altered. An ordinary 45 minute meal at Old Country Buffet would take several hours using only a two pronged blunted fork. And it could only be speeded up if one stuck to liquids that are far less fattening and scoot through the intestines much faster leaving far less deposits on the arterial walls.

Which reminds me of a breakfast I had recently at I-Hop. I always use their coupons and order the best meal. In my case it is pork chops, three eggs, four pancakes, a tank of coffee, and what ever of my wife’s sensible breakfast she doesn’t finish. I could say I don’t eat anymore that day but it would be a lie. Unlike Old Country Buffet they still allow smoking but they put them in a cage so as not to contaminate sensible customers. I like to sit where I can watch them coughing and hacking even though it is a bit difficult to see them through the clouds of second hand smoke. They appear to be enjoying themselves, but I wonder for how long.

Robert Pocklington is a resident of Suffolk and a regular columnist for the Suffolk News-Herald.