Archive for July, 2011

July 30, 2011

Senator Scott Brown (R-MA) open to ‘Reid plan’ and others regarding debt ceiling

Senator Scott Brown (R-MA). Pic courtesy of

In the über partisan battle over raising ‘the debt ceiling’, it has been reported that Senator Scott Brown(R-MA)  told Boston NPR affiliate WBUR earlier today, that he would support the so-called ‘Reid plan’ when it is brought up for a vote. Shortly  after though, a Brown spokesman said hours ago in a statement that Brown would support ‘ any of the current  plans or any others that raise the debt ceiling while tackling the nation’s long-term deficit.

We are days away from default. Senator Brown will support a bill that contains spending cuts and doesn’t increase taxes and allows us to avoid default. That could be a Republican bill, or a Democrat bill – it doesn’t matter. He believes we need to set aside our party loyalties and get the job done for the people we represent.

The Senator does appear to be reinforcing his statements with his vote. After all, he did  side with the majority of his party to go forward with the ‘Boehner plan’ which later went down to a well forecast defeat in that body by a vote of 59-41.


Brown has done his best to distance himself from other ‘tea partiers’ who were elected last year on a platform of cutting spending, the deficit, and the size of government. Given the stakes with Tuesday’s deadline looming before a possible down grade of the nation’s ‘triple A’ credit rating or an outright default; its predictable and pretty politically savvy that Brown would at least fashion himself as Bi-Partisan voice seeking agreement in a divided government.

July 28, 2011

Headlines on the recovery in the calm after the storm.

A display shed in the parking lot outside the Home Depot on Memorial Drive, was crushed by Thursdays storm.

The city of Wilbraham is the community in Western Massachusetts that sustained the lions share of the fury and was struck the heaviest blows of Tuesday’s storms, according to the National Weather Service. Winds, at times reaching speeds of between ninety and one hundred miles an hour.

The National Weather Service also reports that the swift, but brief winds and hail were the result of a straight line downdraft of air known as a ‘microburst’.

In old mill building just off Lyman Street that had a large section of one of its brick walls chewed out by the winds of Tuesday’s storm, will soon be demolished. The Paper city’s Acting building inspector said Wednesday that the remaining shell of the   building  housing the James A. Curran General Contractors Inc, is to be slated for demolition and was already in frail condition leading up to the storm.

In South Hadley, the Offices for the town’s Departments of Recreation and Veterans remain closed due to damage from the storms.

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July 27, 2011

Storm updates

   The Western Massachusetts Electric Company (WEMCO) said many without power will have electricity again by dusk tonight writing on their Facebook page:
   ‎110+ line and tree crews are working hard to restore power to WMECo customers. Much progress was made overnight to restore outages that affected 14,000 at the peak. A complete restoration is expected by 6pm today.Call 413-781-4300 within the Springfield area, or 877-OK-WMECO (877-659-6326) to report an outage.
Fifty-nine communities in the Pioneer Valley are customers of WMECO, several of which are plagued by outages. All customers they say, will have power back on by Friday night.
July 27, 2011

Dispatches from hours after the storm

       The following writing comes from notes and links compiled in the first few hours after the storm.

A chain of thunderstorms, accompanied by hail and fierce winds pounded Western Massachusetts late Tuesday afternoon; resulting in at least one fatality, heavy property damage, flooded streets, and downed wires.

An 85-year-old who crashed into a toppled tree ensnared in live electrical wires while riding his motorcycle, is so far the only known casualty.

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July 26, 2011

Pleasant Street Video: The way it was in Pictures

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July 15, 2011

‘Pleasent Street Video’ shuts down, efforts continue to preserve its movies for the Forbes Library

'Pleasant Street Video' clerk Bill Dwight (left) alongside store co-owner and Manager Dana Gentes (right).


 End credits rolled and like an old cowboy drenched in Technicolor, ‘Pleasant Street Video’ metaphorically rode off into the sunset of local memory at 6pm last night, closing  its doors for the final time.

    The  announcement that the small independent movie rental store that has animated the corner of Pleasant and Armory streets in downtown Northampton for the past twenty-five years would be closing in July; came last month after five years of declining revenue.

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July 2, 2011

‘Pleasent Street Video’ to close its doors; Sunday will be last day for rentals and renewals

Pleasant Street Video (Pic courtesy of:

Sobering news for cinefanatics in the Pioneer Valley, especially Northampton. As many already know Pleasant Street Video, the old-fashioned video rental store on the corner of Armory street and Pleasant Street in the downtown area, will forever close its doors two weeks from today. Its shelves were stocked with hard to find titles, foreign films from just about every country on the map, and experimental films. The close comes as the old video store business that first came about in the early to mid eighties is dying out with the birth of the internet, Netflix, and red box services.

This Sunday will be the last chance to rent out or renew any rentals, though the store will remain open until Saturday July 16 to collect movies that need to be returned, accept donations for their effort to sell their film collection to the Forbes Library, and for what will no doubt be a multitude of heartfelt goodbyes. My computer isn’t set up yet (hopefully the needed part will come today and my brother’s friend will be able to service the computer as needed); so a further article and photographs should be posted on this by the end of next week.