Living in Berlin MD 2012 – Some plusses and minuses viewed from West Street!

I’m pretty sure that Mike and I are responsible for this warmish winter!  Just before Christmas I abandoned my normally frugal habits and purchased a beautiful, designer winter coat; Mike purchased a pair of stout winter boots.  Neither of these ‘winter preparedness’ purchases has seen the light of day since delivery.  Aghhhh!  Do I rue these purchases – really, not at all!  Instead, we’ve all enjoyed a most unusual, warmish winter with far less spent in seasonal heating costs compared to the cold years.  A good thing!

Rather than begin the New Year with ‘resolutions’, I’ve chosen instead this year to have ‘intentions’.  For instance:  I’ve spent most every day in January intending to eliminate SPAM in my email inbox.  Each SPAM/Junk mail ‘should’ be accompanied by an ‘unsubscribe’ link to an unsubscribe ‘box’.  After weeks of clicking and carefully inserting my email address (one of several) in that box it looks as if I’m winning the battle.  An intention, carried out for which there is an almost immediate and ultimately, long-term reward in lessening daily frustrations!  Another plus!

I’ve been reading a lot about the ‘intentions’ of others too these days.  A quick read of the Minutes of the recent January 23rd Town of Berlin Maryland Mayor and Council meeting revealed a request from the Berlin Chamber of Commerce to be permitted to sell alcohol – beer and wine, at five Berlin annual events.  Of course these beverage refreshment sales are to take place within certain street boundaries.  What?  What are ‘we’ thinking?  Has it come to the point where a Town/Chamber sponsored, ‘family friendly’ event, lasting but several hours, street-side activity cannot be ‘enjoyed’ by the attendees without alcohol?   Are there not already several privately owned, bars and restaurants in Berlin who serve alcohol that no longer need the support and benefit that our events offer with increased crowds?  Are the Berlin Police to be asked to ignore individuals tottering to cars, post-event, preparing to take to the highways heading home?  Is it really fine that alcohol be readily available to event attendees but the traditional (and very popular) ‘Pig Races’ of Spring Celebration be discontinued due to concerns by the PETA folks?  Are we desperate for Chamber funding?  Are we hypocrites?  Are we nuts?

 

I’m no teetotaler – yet I believe this action puts the Town of Berlin MD upon the wrong path.  Ironically, shortly after the Octoberfest event I was conversing with two folks; one from Ocean City MD – one from Fenwick DE (who had attended Octoberfest and the Berlin Christmas Parade).  When asked where I was from – and answering, “Berlin” – each commented,  “Berlin is following Salisbury with the street event alcohol idea – a bad move” and further spoke about the high crime rate in Salisbury MD and that town’s deteriorating reputation.

 

I consider the Chamber’s intention a minus…with our Town crowing about substantially increased revenues due to our apportionment from nearby Casino Ocean Downs – perhaps  a few dollar could be siphoned off to what appears to be, our needy Chamber of Commerce?