The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, April 20, 2001

Letters to the Editor

Thanks on an unlucky day

To the Editor:
This is a note to thank the fire department for their prompt response to my call on Friday the 13th.

Waking up to the smell of something burning, and my husband away on a business trip, left me a lot of anxiety, and their attention, expert analysis (our humidifier in the main heating duct burned itself out), and courteous service was so much appreciated. Thank you, thank you.
Joan Parker
Girl Scout leaders are appreciated
To the Editor:
April 22 is Girl Scout Leader Appreciation Day. We would like to thank all the leaders for taking time from their busy schedules to plan fun-filled meetings where the girls learn new crafts, participate in community service projects and find out how important it is for them to work together and be there as sister Girl Scouts for each level of Scouting.

This year has been an exceptional year so far, with leaders and volunteers coordinating extra outdoor activities for the girls and their families, besides planning troop field trips and meetings. The girls have had a great time cross-country skiing, hiking, canoeing and camping. They have gone on some field trips such as the Haunted Tour of Salem, an overnight at the Hammond Castle, and visiting Gore Place to name a few.

Thank you again, leaders, for your support to Girl Scouting and for being there for the girls. You are truly appreciated.
Linda Fabrizio and Jill Khederian, co-coordinators of Carlisle Girl Scouts
Russell Street
Newspaper should have warning label
To the Editor:
The next time someone declares open season on new home owners, could you please print a public service announcement somewhere on the front page? The one-two punch by Greg Wayland and Susan D. Granger on page two, like alcohol and cigarettes, should come with ample warning (Forum and letter, March 30). Maybe something like “Caution: gross generalizations, assumptions and personal prejudices ahead.”

Contrary to the opinions of Mr. Wayland and Ms. Granger, I did not build a home to satisfy my “untrammeled need to make a conspicuous display of wealth” or because I am a “status hungry newcomer.” (Two abhorrent charges to level at anyone, much less complete strangers.) I built a home that meets my family’s needs, both present and future. I do not intend to move when my family grows or an aging parent needs care. I can accommodate them here. My husband and I have overcome many obstacles to get here, as have other families we know, and feel this misdirected anger is unfair and inappropriate. If my house looks a little different from yours, so what? Diversity is a positive thing and in very short supply in this town.

As for “monster mansion,” “tasteless, ill-constructed enormity” and any other clever little epithet making the rounds, everyone has an opinion. Please keep yours to yourself.

Wait for due process
To the Editor:
Once again, the sidewalk issue raises its confusing head. From the article in last week’s Mosquito (“School Loop pathway begins to take shape,” April 13th), are we to understand that the (long-awaited) plan will be presented at Town Meeting, or that part of the construction will proceed as soon as possible, without discussion of the plan and the cost?

How does an item on the school committee’s agenda turn into approval for construction? I admit that I missed the item, but, as a parent, I am quite concerned with safety and security issues. Was that aspect fully advertised as a topic? Public access to school property is a concern to many parents, and should not have been brushed off by the school committee. I do not agree with the assessment that this part of the school loop will be used by “people in the know.” Just how will that be accomplished? (Someone better tell that guy seen relieving himself on the corner last year.)

The bike and pedestrian safety committee serves in an advisory capacity to the selectmen. Have they now been empowered to authorize construction at an unspecified cost, without bringing the matter before the selectmen? Notwithstanding Gary Davis’ plan to do “much of the work himself,” that doesn’t make it free.

Contrary to the constantly quoted statement, the town did not vote to give the bike committee $30,000. The vote allowed the selectmen to accept the entire amount of Chapter 90 funds, of which they announced their intention to earmark $30,000 for the design of the project. A “no” vote would have meant that no state money for any roadwork could be obtained. Subsequently it was reported that, due to budget cuts, only $13,100 might be available. I have yet to understand how much money is available for what purpose, and whether or how it has been spent.
We shouldn’t be surprised if homeowners disregard town bylaws and do what they want on their land. The message coming through loud and clear is that if you want something badly enough, just do it — don’t wait for due process.
Jane Prats
River Road

Developers should show some restraint
To the Editor:
On April 7, I came to the magazine section of The Boston Globe where the headline caught my eye: “When Less is More: great new houses that focus on quality and style, not size, to define them.” In the cover article, architect Sarah Susanka writes about building only the rooms that one needs and uses. In another article a family tears down their split level because it cannot be restructured for their new needs. They plan carefully with sensitivity so that the new house will “fit into the neighborhood, yet still meet (their) goals” and their dreams.

I have read with interest the responses to my letter of March 30. All of them missed the point. I did not say that the other houses in the neighborhood “were” sharecropper’s shacks, I said they “will look like” shacks compared to the size of the new building. ( I include my house in that category). I did not say that people should not take care of their houses, but implied why bother if they are just going to be torn down to put up mega-houses built on spec by developers who have no one waiting, with dreams or money in hand, to buy them. It is these developers who are making the decision as to what houses new buyers will buy. What family needs or dreams of a house so large that it divides them rather than brings them together, and requires an intercom system to locate and communicate with each other?

Carlisle, on the one hand, professes to be a community concerned about conservation, saving the environment and preserving undeveloped open space; on the other hand, it wants the freedom to lay waste to the land and to squander resources that supply lumber, heat and electricity to these unnecessarily large houses with “all the bells and whistles.” Conservation begins at home. I would ask that the developers let the people decide what size house they want. And I ask the people to show some restraint, build only what you need and put your money to better use saving the planet before you have nothing left to preserve for future generations.