November 24th, 2010
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I don’t spend all that much time reading and writing comments on newspaper websites, but make a few exceptions for boston.com baseball coverage, Charlie Pierce blogs and Chad Finn columns; for Burlington Free Press articles on high school field hockey and football; and, only rarely, for an occasional Entertainment Weekly article at ewonline.com. In case anyone else out there reads the same stuff, I don’t mind outing myself as vermontk (boston.com) or Vermont K (BFP).
NEW HAVEN — A sport that requires competitors to go on strict diets, follow intense exercise regimens and pose on stage in barely there beachwear — their bodies coated in oily cooking spray — may not be for everyone.
But 17-year-old Mount Abraham Union High School senior Paige Vincent of New Haven considers it her sport of choice.
Vincent recently switched from competing in bodybuilding to competing in figure competitions — a sport that she says is more “feminine.” While in the same division as bodybuilding, figure judges look more closely at the symmetry of the muscles in the body.
MIDDLEBURY — The Better Middlebury Partnership (BMP) has minted some new currency to promote downtown shopping, as well as the downtown itself.
The BMP has produced a new version of the “Middlebury Money,” checks that can be purchased in various denominations for transactions at local retail, dining and lodging establishments. Middlebury Money was first “minted” around 15 years ago. At its peak, approximately $27,000 worth of Middlebury money was sold in one year, sparking business for local merchants and service providers.
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There are plenty of reasons to see through the glass darkly in late November. You don’t need me to remind you what they are.
But there are also good reasons why it’s become an American tradition to say thanks amid the gathering darkness.
On this holiday, I’m grateful for a few small-time heroes.
I call them “small-time” not because their heroism is petty or unworthy. It’s just that their kind of everyday valor goes largely unnoticed.
I got to thinking about that when I attended a wedding at the Waybury Inn this past summer.
I hadn’t meant to wait so long to read “Tales from the Nam.”
“Tales from the Nam” is a first-hand look at the life of a “grunt” in the Vietnam War. It’s comprehensive and compelling, authentic, well researched, well remembered, and well recounted.
It was written by Dave Nicholson, my friend and basketball teammate from long ago at Middlebury (“Nick” to all who knew him then), and published in 2008.
Boards at the four Addison Northwest Supervisory Union schools are all making efforts to meet the Challenges for Change spending recommendations. Here’s what’s going on at each school:
Vergennes Union High School Co-Principal Ed Webbley said VUHS must cut about $165,000 from the previous budget plus new costs to reach level funding. That goal could be reached because fewer aides will be needed next year and another “position or two” will be lost through attrition, he said.
“It would cost us quite a bit, but we would still have full programs,” he said.
MIDDLEBURY — “Challenges for Change” has largely been portrayed as an effort by the Douglas administration and the 2010 Legislature to save $38 million in state spending by making government programs more lean and efficient.
And while the new directive has sent many public entities scrambling to make deep cuts, a few enterprising nonprofits are poised to receive some budget increases for some innovative programs that could help the state save more money in the long run to meet the Challenges goal.