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Friday, June 22, 2012

Honors to Bud Caulfield

Martha and I went to the "Appreciation Night In Honor Of Edward 'Bud' Caulfield", at Lenzi's this evening.  Contributions went to the benefit of the Salvation Army Radiothon.

First off, the food was good.  Basically cheeseburgers and potato salad and cole slaw.  One thing I noted was that in addition to mustard, ketchup and mayo, there was relish.  Not something I see in lots of restaurants.

Lots of folks were there, including GLTHS School Committee member Michael Lenzi.  The current and previous state senators were there, along with David Nangle and Tom Golden.  State Senator Panagiotakos put in a plug for David Nangle's run for reëlection.  You don't think they thought I might jump in, a decade later?  Former City Manager John Cox recalled for someone when I had stopped by for a courtesy call on him when I ran ten years ago.

Our table included some City Life folks, including George Anthes (and his wife, Bev) and Linda Bown.  John McDonough and his wife Ellen stopped by before heading out to a wedding in New Hampshire.  Former Mayor Rita Mercier was at our table, along with a woman I didn't meet, with a yellow t-shirt with a green dragon fly.  Also at our table was Deb Forgione, from one of our neighborhood groups (Pawtucketville, as I recall).  I thought that Ms Forgione had some good points, including that, compared to Lynne, with a strong mayor, Lowell was lucky to have a City Manager form of Government and she noted the difference in the trajectories of the two cities (Deb had lived in Lynne at one point).  She also spent time out in California, where my middle brother lives, in the Sunnyvale/Cupertino area, which I think of as a high tech/space faring area.  So, while Ms Forgione is a "blow in" she noted that those who have been here their whole lives bring some wisdom to the discussion.  She noted how there was an effort to clean up an overgrown cemetery and how that then lead to vandals going in and damaging the cemetery.  The overgrown vegetation was, in fact, a deterrent to vandalism.

Back to the party as a whole, Councillors Rita Mercier and Marty Lorrey presented former Mayor Caulfield with a Proclamation from the City.  Rep Nangle said that the Proclamation from Beacon Hill was being held up by the budget battle.  There was a band, lead by Leo Sheridan and with Paul Belley as the singer.

And, as an editorial note, I saw the Editor of The Sun and asked him if it was Campi or Campy and he told Campy.  Bloggers take note.

Regards  —  Cliff


Jack Mitchell said...

The Editor should know, the writer gets to choose the brand.

When the name appears on the birth certificate, honor the wishes documented.

Besides, neither Campi or Pangi have a "y" in thier names. For ethnofidelity sakes, I refuse to anglicize folks for the benefit of readers that choke on vowels.

The New Englander said...

The beauty of the CM model is that you're distancing the executive #1 decision-maker from the politics of the decision, whatever it may be.

Yes, the CM's position is inherently a political one; and yes, he is subject to the collective whims of any five Councilors. BUT they also provide a layer between him and the people he serves.

That's how you can get truly difficult things done. If something is politically difficult, but if people who really *get* the issue would admit in private that it should happen, the executive can go ahead with it, take all the barbs (and even the faux outrage from the 'Board of Directors' who get quoted in the paper) but his job remains safe.

Strong mayor has its advantages, of course, but you've got a more difficult, and more political, decision-making process there. The decision-making calculus is happening on a shorter timeline, and short-term pandering may start mattering more than what's best in the long-term.