Archive - May 12, 2011
After living in China without a personal car for almost two years, I decided to give what I call the “vehiculess” life in Vermont a whirl. So far, it’s gone really well.
The biggest surprise to me has been the shock of friends and colleagues who can’t believe that it’s possible to live in rural Vermont without a car. But due to the central location of my Middlebury apartment, the rapidly expanding and improving Addison County Transit Resources (ACTR) bus lines, and my love for biking, I haven’t needed a car outside of work.
What seems to irk opponents the most about H.202, the much ballyhooed health-care reform bill passed by the Vermont legislature last week, is that Gov. Peter Shumlin and the Democratic-controlled Legislature are getting a lot of credit for establishing a process to move toward a new health care system without first figuring out the details. As one conservative curmudgeon noted in an attempt to dismiss the importance of the bill, who wouldn’t be for creating an improved health care system that covers all Vermonters for less money?
VERGENNES — Vergennes Union High School junior third baseman Kate Mulliss had a first inning to forget in Tuesday’s home softball game vs. Mount Abraham, but a seventh inning to remember.
Mulliss made three first-inning errors that helped the Eagles to five runs. But she capped a three-hit day by drilling a line drive homer over the left-field fence in the seventh to snap a tie and give the Commodores an 11-9 win over their local rivals.
Afterward, Mulliss recalled the first inning.
Researchers at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston recently published data on state and local public finances in the six New England states. Vermont’s combined state and local government spending was $8,500 per capita in fiscal 2007, the most recent year for which comparable data is available for all the New England states. This was the highest per capita expenditure in the region. In the same year, Vermont’s median household income was the second lowest in New England, above only Maine, and 20 to 25 percent below that in New Hampshire, Connecticut and Massachusetts.
ONE, TWO balls; ONE, TWO strikes. ONE out. ONE, TWO, THREE, FOUR, FIVE, SIX innings. I love to count!
Just about my favorite Sesame Street puppet was the Count, dressed as he was in his black cape, ticking off numbers in his thick Transylvanian accent. He helped all four of my children learn to count.
I think the Count could also help young baseball players learn the game.
Conservative radio commentator Rush Limbaugh showed his true colors this week — which are anything but red, white and blue — as he repeated on his show one of the Republican Party’s mantras of the moment: “We don’t need more revenues, folks, we need less spending! We need less spending.” And then he added, “and I, by the way, I still want Obama to fail, lest there be any doubt.”
Ten days from now, several hundred Middlebury College students will take those fateful steps across the commencement stage to receive their degrees and then bound off into the world.
For many of us Middlebury College alums who have taken that same walk, this is a nostalgic time of year. We can’t help but recall our own college experience, and the poignant days as they came to a close.