Friday, September 22, 2023

Wildwood – 5-24-2006

By Rick Racela

Based on the salary increase numbers and ongoing dispute with the county for further wage increases that I read about in last week’s paper, I guess the folks from the County Prosecutors office must have read that item that appeared in the news last week about housewives being worth $134,000 a year and figured they were worth at least that much. ‘Overworked and underpaid’, they claim. Perhaps. But does their job description include washing windows and doing the laundry? If you think the costs of local and county government are getting out of control, consider how out of control the behavior of our federal government appears to be getting. I guess I’m in trouble with the feds now. Last week, I called a local landscaping outfit to get a price on some nature maintenance around the family homestead. In particular, I was concerned about a twirly bush that had somehow grown too big for its twirl and I wanted to get rid of it. I hate twirly bushes. You know the kind I mean. They’re the French poodles of the vegetable world. I didn’t plant mine. A previous owner did. I ignored the twirl for years, hoping it would grow out and become a real bush. Instead, it just kept twirling and twirling like a bush out of a Stephen King novel until now it threatens to undermine the foundation of the house. Hence, the call to the landscaper. The trouble I’m in comes from something I said to the landscaper during the course of our phone conversation. “I really want to kill that bush.” I said with emphasis. So now, the feds are probably after me since they’re monitoring everybody’s phone calls these days in order to catch the terrorists. Instead of nabbing Osama, the snoops are more likely learning how many Americans order take out Chinese on Thursday nights. I had a distrust of phones before the government took an interest in what I was talking about. In particular, I dislike the cell phones my kids at college have. I’m adamantly opposed to how much they’re costing me per month, sometimes tallying up to more than the monthly mortgage. When the cost of those phones escalates to the point where it matches my property taxes, I’m canceling the phones and sending the kids a couple of blankets and a copy of the book, “Smoke Signals for Dummies”. One really valuable service the government could perform, if they insist on monitoring our phone calls, would be to ask those parents stupid enough to actually pay for their kids cell phones (like me) what dollar limit they would put on their childrens’ phone usage and when that limit is reached, all calls would be interrupted by the following message: “This is the FBI, you have exceeded your parents’ budget for phone use this month, hang up immediately and start writing letters.” Since the federal government is utterly lacking in sense of humor these days, this task would likely be still another ‘unfunded mandate’ they pass on to the states and counties. So, if the County Prosecutor’s office would be willing to add this duty to their work load, maybe those numbers they’re tossing about wouldn’t seem so out of line to the average Joe. *** The Teenagers will appear at the Wildwood Convention Center, Burk Avenue and the boardwalk, on Thursday, June 1 at 9 p.m. The event is presented by the New Jersey State Elks Convention Committee. Also appearing will be the Shangri Las. Tickets cost $17.50 in advance. Children under ten pay $10. For ticket information, stop by the convention center box office on Saturday or Sunday from noon until 6 p.m. or Monday from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. *** Wildwood Crest Recreation Department is accepting applications for summer basketball leagues, open to children in grades 3-12. League breakdowns are pee wee for grades 3-5, grammar school girls and boys (separate leagues) for grades 6-8, and high school boys and girls (separate leagues) for grades 9-12. Players must register in person at the Recreation Center at 5800 Ocean Ave. Cost is $20 per player. Registration deadline is June 28. *** Reminder: North Wildwood’s 4th Annual Beach Writers Conference takes place June 6-8 at Montego Bay Hotel and Conference Center, 17th and the boardwalk. The seminars are free. Registration forms can be obtained by calling 522-7722. *** Congratulations to Margaret Mace School Students of the Month for April. Named by their teachers for “showing improvement” are: Kyle Henderson, Charles Patterson, Colin Wright (pre-school), Rebecca McCaughey, Jacob Swartz, David Tantaros (kindergarten), Jahquees Johnson, Lily Collier (1st grade), Morgan Markee, Connor Magee (2nd), Olivia Shelton, Mia Kostka, Matthew Donahue (3rd), Vincent DeRitis, Seamus McCloskey (4th), Sydney Pfeil, Sabrina McGrath, Michelle Loughran, Brittany Sheppard (5th). Named from the upper grades are: Richard Gavin, Ashli Estill, Reba Lewis (6th grade), Shawn Karge, Mario Rodia, Kelly Hansen, Brendon Laffey (7th), John Gavin, Rounding out the 8th grade are Tyler Carr, Christina Feather, and Michael Kutas. *** West Wildwood holds its American Family Festival on July 1. Vendors are encouraged to participate. For information, call Joan at 224-3168. *** Wildwood City Commission meets tonight at 7 p.m. on the second floor of City Hall, 4400 New Jersey Ave. Joint Construction Office of the Wildwoods meets Friday at 8:30 a.m. at JCOW’s office, 4004 Pacific Ave. *** Tai chi classes are held every Saturday at 10 a.m. at 1st United Methodist Church, 6700 Atlantic Ave. Wildwood Crest. Cost is $3 per class. Call 729-4265 for more information. *** Wildwood Recreation Center, at 243 E. Rio Grande Avenue, is organizing ceramics classes. For information on this and other programs, call 522-5837. *** Margaret Mace School holds its 49th annual Spring Evening tomorrow. The evening is a presentation of student efforts and achievements throughout the school year in such diverse areas as wood shop, technology, art, and the sciences. Exhibits will be on display at 7 p.m. There will also be a concert featuring the school band, choir and members of the various grades. The concert begins at 7:15 p.m. in the school auditorium. The public is encouraged to attend this free program.

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