Thoughts From The Publisher’s Desk

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Some calendars said it. Most computers acknowledged it. There was reason to be confused about when Daylights Savings Time actually expired. For the record, it’s Sunday at 2 a.m., meaning you will gain an hour of sleep (or drinking at your favorite watering hole for some). A friend of mine was truly thrown by the time change because his alarm clock reverted back an hour. He sports one of those high-tech alarm clocks by his bed that has all the cool features (the best being it resets itself in the middle of the night if power is lost). Nonetheless, he went most of the day an hour behind. It was not until the 4:15 p.m. Redskins game that he realized something was not right. Technology is a wonderful thing, but, in this case, it was not so helpful. That being said, it was a bit strange he did not realize he was living one hour behind everyone else in our time zone until late in the afternoon. Good thing it was not Monday morning.

Some people just don’t like trees. That’s difficult to imagine, but it’s a fact of life, and the Berlin Mayor and Council is trying to encourage property owners to preserve them. Some Berlin residents were recently appalled when a William Street property owner removed some large trees and that may have led to Councilwoman Paula Lynch’s request to get the word out to property owners about the importance of trees. Berlin is the home of the big trees, including a 30-foot tall walnut tree in my backyard. While it’s messy and the dogs don’t seem to enjoy nuts falling on their heads, it will never be torn down, although it may be trimmed from time to time. At the risk of sounding like a tree hugger, that beautiful tree is a part of the property’s heritage. It was there long before me and will likely be around long after I am gone. However, others do not feel the same way and will cut down anything if it makes the property look (sell) better. Nonetheless, the town’s effort to reach out to citizens is worthwhile, although the success of the awareness initiative will be difficult to measure.

It was a family affair at a wet and windy Seaside 10 last Saturday, as the Zimak siblings of Washington, Pa. stole the show in the 5K (3.1-mile) race. Donald Zimak, 14, was first overall to cross the finish line with a time of 19:37 (a 6:20-mile pace). This was the fifth Seaside race for the eighth grader. His sister, Jessica, 15, was the first female to finish in 20:18 (a 6:33-mile pace). It’s not surprising the siblings are both members of their school’s cross country teams. Congratulations to them both.

Once again it has been proven that residents take much umbrage when something is changed involving the television. Over the last couple weeks, there has been some outrage over some cable programming being blocked. For instance, as local resident Paul Day pointed out this week in a short letter, Seinfeld is blacked out at 7:30 p.m. Oprah is another favorite that’s reportedly been shut out. In a letter posted on its website, WBOC Vice President/General Manager addresses the issue. “When you add up the costs associated with acquiring and airing the programs that attract the most viewers, you are now well over the million-dollar mark. The bottom line (pun intended) is that programming costs over the last 10 years have gone from a source of income to our stations to becoming a huge, and rapidly growing expense. As a small, locally-owned business, we have had to make the tough decision to begin enforcing our exclusive rights to these programs in our viewing area. Out-of-market television stations (i.e. Baltimore, Washington D.C, Philadelphia) purchase the exclusive rights for these same programs for their local viewing areas, and they would not permit their local cable companies to start carrying WBOC and FOX21 as an alternate outlet for these programs in the areas in which they have exclusive rights. We have reached the point where we can no longer allow local cable companies to provide duplication of this programming at our expense.”

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