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The Mast Head: No Second-Rate Turkeys Here

Wed, 05/17/2023 - 17:59

If spring could be boiled down to a single word, it would be optimism. Why else would the second-rate tom turkeys, the ones with tattered feathers and a limp, fan their tails and try to strut in confident circles around a few uninterested hens?

In human terms, spring’s forward-looking ways are evident, too. The massive increase in the trade parade of work trucks coming east to properly feather our summer residents’ nests is one. Second-rate lawns and landscapes just will not spark the struts of the fancy people or the turkeys alike. Someone told me recently that the company he works for had signed its first million-dollar annual landscape contract.

The spring rush can be seen in the letters to the editor of this paper, I think. After a sunny and dry weekend, few come in by the Monday deadline; one can envision their would-be writers instead outside in the garden or perhaps getting the houses ready for renters. Conversely, rain and foul weather over a weekend yield a spike in the commentary. It is as if our correspondents, stuck inside yet chafing to get things done, let their frustrations sprout like weeds.

Few among the people who send us letters do so by hand anymore; most appear to compose them right in an email, which we prefer. There are others, though, who are faithful to pen and paper. I tend to keep the ones that arrive from an occasional letter writer from Boston whose points generally escape me, but the documents themselves I consider works of genius. As my mother, who ran this paper for many years, would say, “Who are we to judge? The letters mean something to the people who write them.”

The then-wife of a famous actor who used to write to us often told me some years ago that when her husband would pull out a yellow-lined pad and begin, “Dear Editor,” she knew it was time to move to another part of the house. We probably should have saved those drafts; they might have been valuable one day.

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