A continuing tale of life in the boonies
Zoning Board of Adjustment: Elizabeth Fischer aired her plans for a 10-unit apartment complex to be constructed from a "white elephant" of a house situated at 26 Mechanic St., at a public hearing of the Z.B.A. last week. It began around eight o'clock in the evening, apparently, with a lively exchange of views that whiled away the hours, and eventually wore out the audience and the lady from Foster's Daily Democrat.
I chanced by around 10 o'clock, with only the hardened campaigners and those with a stake in the outcome, remaining. The musical score on these occasions invariably takes the form of a rondo, with an occasional few bars of improvisation from certain sections of the orchestra. Thus, late entry does not mean that one really misses a note.
There are, however, radically different interpretations of what reaches the ears. Gerry McCarthy, the present owner of the building, cannot afford to do anything with it and has got to sell. Three board members consider this a Hardship. Two thought it does not meet the test of hardship. The Board chairman considered, after hearing all the evidence that the "Hurdle of abutters had been cleared," yet anyone reading Mardi Link's account in Foster's might be forgiven for thinking the hedge of abutters had been trampled flat. The dichotomy continued.
No injustice in not granting a variance to the ordinance dealing with overcrowding: 2 votes. Unjust: 3 votes.
"What is overcrowding?" asked Joe Petrie rhetorically.
"Judge Nute's court on a Thursday morning!" one felt like replying.
The meeting then became hung up on the spirit and intent of the land use ordinance. But not for long. The impartial public, which by this time (10:30 p.m.), had been whittled down to one soul, urged Home Rule for Mechanic Street. Biff Silvia, (for it was he) encouraged Ms. Fischer to "buy it and do it. No one will do anything. The Boards are wasting their time."
The Board looked mildly dejected.
"All Boards are wasting their time!" elaborated Biff and offered odds of 10 to 1 that nothing would happen to the would-be developer. This was the cue for another vote, to dispel the idea that Farmington was really an anarchist commune. The variance was granted by another vote of 3-2, with Sam Gray and John Scruton again comprising the minority.
"The town needs quality housing," said Joe Pitrie, trying to wrap things up. "Do you congest an area to give it to 'em?" asked the indefatigable Biff.
John Scruton, making a short pre-election speech, said that above all else the town needed industry and listed the reasons for the lack of same as "no water and sewer lines to Route 11 and too much water infiltration in the spring."
"No water fit to drink," added Mr. Silvia.
In the final movement, which shot from adagio to presto, permission was granted to build seven, one-bedroom and three two-bedroom units, under Section 8, with the provision that a five-foot fence be erected around the property. A revised plan was requested and 20 days will be given for anyone to lodge an appeal.
Mr. Ramgunshoch's crossword
Mr. R., whose monthly Puddledock crossword is now thankfully consigned to the garbage can of history, nonetheless feels harshly treated by events in general and this column in particular. Americans, in one day, fill in, or try to fill in about 50 acres of crossword puzzles. Given this fact, how odd that Ramgunshoch's brainchild should be almost completely ignored issue after issue, despite the lure of three big bucks.
The answer to this brain teaser is immediately apparent on examination of the clues below, gleaned at random from his final doom-ridden compilation. (Answers have fortunately been obtained.)
Across 1. 0, Joe Blunt, a bum in crazy Farmington's high spot. (4,3,8) Answer - Blue Job Mountain)
Down 24. Come all -- faithful (2) Answer - ye
Down 25: Come --- ye faithful (3) Answer - all
I apologize to the readers of Farmington for re-exposing them to such impenetrable nonsense.
Town meeting of March 13, 1985
In a pale shade, indeed, of selectmen's gatherings, ye olde Forde 76 earned a mention, and a ripple of applause rewarded a brief appearance by Bridges and Culverts. The only idiosyncratic feature of the evening was the order in which the articles on the warrant were raised, hopping as they did, from 38 to 23 to 34 to 28 rather like bingo.
The attendance, with only around 120 citizens present, was on the low side in comparison to past years, and is a chilling indication of the deathgrip M.T.V. is exercising on young and old. For the Historical Society and posterity, the meeting was filmed by high school heart-throb Richard Smart.
Smokey LaPanne crossed Main Street and stood for a while outside Mros' store.
"Hello" he said to a friend who joined him.
"Hi", said the new arrival, "Care for a hot-dog?"
Smokey nodded. Choking this savory down he then ambled up-town. "Hello" he said amiably to Archie Corson, busily standing outside the drugstore.
"What's happening?" responded Archie. Smokey wandered on towards a tall figure in a ball-cap.
"Hello", he said politely.
"Gotcha!" yelled Marshal Colwell triumphantly to Farmington's only Talking Dog, so recently admonished from Judge Nute's court. The dog prodigy, angry with himself for failing to spot the words Animal Control on the marshal's headgear, was conveyed in stony silence to Dover. (Fade out with choir of small children singing "How much is that Doggie in the Dog Pound."
Fade in with a judge asking "Is this the third or the fourth offense?"
Dog Officer: "Third, your honor."
Judge: "And is this kind, lovable and affectionate animal in Dover now?"
D.O.: "No, itís back on the streets. It was bailed out and took off again."
Judgment: Next time it will be put up for adoption.
Latest Scores: Farmington Town & District Men's Basketball FinalÖ Community Center 98 New Durham 88. (Trophy presented to Gary Bouley and friends by Selectman Willis Berry.) Health Officer 1 Cows 0 (Kiss of life withheld). Dogs 16 Dog Officer 25 (Extra time being played).
March 19, 1985
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