Category Archives: Animal Issues

Don’t let what happened to this cat happen to yours!

But first 🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸 …

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Cece, like all of Rose’s cats (going back 25+ years!), is an INDOOR KITTY!💗 Here she is with her best buddy! pic: R.T.

By Teresa Chagrin

The Humane Society of Utah called it “one of the most extreme cases of animal torture we’ve seen.” A cat named Sage managed to drag himself home after being beaten and tortured by an unknown assailant. His ribs were broken, his toes were smashed, his body was covered with hot glue burns, his eyes were swollen shut and he was suffering from brain swelling as a result of head trauma. Despite emergency treatment by a veterinarian, he succumbed to his injuries the next day.

I wish I could tell you that what happened to Sage was an awful anomaly — that psychopaths don’t lurk in plain sight, in “good” neighborhoods and “bad,” just waiting for defenseless victims to happen along.

But they do.

And we only make it easier for them to commit their horrific crimes when we let our beloved feline companions walk out the door and right into their clutches.

Terrible things happen to free-roaming cats with depressing frequency. In the past few months alone, more than a dozen cats were reportedly shot in California, Florida, Kentucky, New Jersey, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and West Virginia. In Mississippi, a video posted online showed that a woman doused a caged cat with a hot liquid as the animal howled in agony. The cat was later found dead, curled in a fetal position and covered with burns. In New York, a cat was found suffering from infected chemical burns so severe that some went all the way to the bone.

I’m telling you these things not to make you lose sleep but to make clear that there is nowhere safe for cats outdoors, not even a “paradise” like Hawaii, where three were shot in a single month. Two died and a third survived after being found on someone’s doorstep with an arrow piercing her body.

It may be hard for those of us who share our homes with cats to comprehend, but not everyone loves them. People get annoyed when cats climb on their cars, dig in their gardens, antagonize their indoor cats and dogs, and pick off songbirds at the bird feeder. A man in Florida admitted to shooting a neighbor’s cat because the animal had defecated in his yard.

While there’s never any excuse for harming a cat, those who don’t want them prowling in their yards have a valid grievance. Cats can spread diseases to each other, to wildlife and to humans, including toxoplasmosis, bubonic plague, typhus and rabies. Endangered Florida panthers have died after contracting feline leukemia from domesticated cats, while endangered monk seals and spinner dolphins in Hawaii have perished after toxoplasmosis from infected cat feces contaminated the water.

In fact, a recent report named domesticated cats the deadliest invasive species in the world, responsible or partly responsible for the extinctions of over 60 species. They are estimated to be culpable in the deaths of up to 24 billion birds, chipmunks, salamanders and other wild animals in the U.S. alone every year.

There’s no question about it: It’s best for everyone when cats live indoors. In addition to being protected from cruel people, they are safe from threats posed by wildlife, dogs, traffic, parasites and deadly contagious diseases such as feline AIDS, leukemia and distemper.

That’s why the average life span of an indoor cat is 12 to 15 years, versus just 2 to 5 years for those who roam outdoors.

Sage’s family is keeping its surviving animals indoors and urging others to do the same. “We don’t want other families to have to go through this, to suffer the way we’ve had to suffer,” said his brokenhearted guardian.

Wall Street Journal praises Worcester for downtown approach

But first …

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By Steven R. Maher

Worcester received high praise from the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) this past Tuesday, March 21, 2017. The city’s success in tearing down the old Worcester Center Galleria and replacing it with offices, apartments and a hotel is seen as an example other struggling cities should follow.

The WSJ reported this in a page 3 article, showing a 2008 photograph of Worcester’s downtown which showed a deserted city with rust-colored ground in older industrial parcels. More favorable for the city was a recent photo showing larger patches of bright, white concrete in a city center bustling with activity and development.

“A hotel and an apartment complex are rising on a street here that was buried by a shopping mall for four decades,” began the article. “A new office building also opened nearby, replacing a structure that failed to resuscitate this New England city’s core.” The WSJ quoted City Manager Edward M. Augustus Jr. of the old Galleria: “We don’t want these big dead walls.”

“You can’t put lipstick on a pig,” former Mayor Tim Murray told the newspaper of the old mall. “It was a design disaster.”

$300 Million Private Investment

The Journal reported that the city spent $90 million to demolish and rebuild city streets. The report stated: “The investment set the table for $300 million in private development, thus far, which the city said would generate higher taxes. The downtown in Worcester’s second largest is enjoying a broader rebound from years of postindustrial malaise. The population is growing, and apartments and restaurants have also popped up in refurbished older buildings around the city core.”

“It’s critical for cities to not just wring their hands about mistakes of an earlier era, but to find solutions,” August was quoted as saying.

The journal went on to review other urban cities which built new malls in their downtowns, while shoppers fled to the suburbs. As the malls lost their tenants, real estate values around the malls plummeted.

“Demolition [of the Galleria] finally started in 2010,” continued the WSJ. “Insurer Unum Group built an office building there, opened in 2013, and a cancer center is also open. What will eventually be 365 apartment units by developer Roseland Residential Trust are rising nearby, as is a 168-room hotel. Trains to Boston are a short walk away on a rebuilt downtown street.”

How the Boys & Girls Club of Worcester and After School Programs Across the Country are Helping Kids, 10 Million at a Time

Dear Friend,

Did you know 10.2 million children in the US participate in after-school activities?

And that for every youth enrolled, two more are waiting to join? The Boys & Girls Club of Worcester serves 6,000 youth a year, but more need our help.

We advocate to secure the support necessary to accept every child who walks through our doors. It’s challenging to raise the funds necessary to provide our programs, but our kids are worth it.

Our programs, and that of Boys & Girls Clubs across the nation, have proven results:

93% of Club members abstained from alcohol use

83% of Club members are on track to graduate high school

100% of our 2016 graduating high school seniors were accepted to college

90% of youth who participate in homework help improve their grades by at least one letter grade

54% of alumni say the Club saved their life

* 2016 Boys & Girls Club of America and Boys & Girls Club of Worcester Statistics

Our academic, athletic, recreational, and therapeutic programs are curriculum-based and implemented by qualified, youth development professionals who strive to change the lives of our kids.

Our after-school offerings are crucial to the youth of our community. The Club saves lives. The statistics speak for themselves, but our parents and members have something to say as well. Please join us and be an ambassador for our youth by donating, volunteering, or advocating on their behalf today.

In partnership,

Liz Hamilton, executive director
Boys & Girls Club of Worcester

*****

Don’t take our word for it, listen to a Club parent…

I am a proud parent of a 13-year-old Club kid. My daughter, Rowan, has been going to the Club more than half her life. I remember bringing her to the Harrington Clubhouse for the first time, when she was 6. She went to look around, and I started to call after her, “Stay where I can see you!” but then I realized that it was a safe space, where she could be free to explore. What a relief (for both of us)! Rowan started out in the School Age Child Care soon after. She blossomed – getting attention from the Club teens who worked there was especially helpful in beginning to overcome her shyness. She learned to swim in the weekly pool session, and the dance program’s once-a-week hip hop class kindled her (so far, lifelong) interest in all forms of dance. The staff nurtured Rowan’s love for storytelling, and had her read her “books” to the class. Even so, she was counting the days until her 8th birthday, so she could be a “real” member, and have the run of the Club.

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As soon as Rowan was a full member, she joined Girls Voice, a family of girls-only programs that lets girls cultivate their leadership abilities, discuss issues that are important to them, and learn what it means to be a friend. Rowan came into her own in the program. She rose to the staff’s trust in her, and began to coordinate the activities, even working with other programs to organize Club clean-ups and other volunteer projects.

She also found a talent as a peacemaker, helping squabbling Club-mates to find common ground and start acting like friends again. The timid little girl who started at the Club would never have thought she could take charge like that. Rowan tried out, and was one of the few 8-year-olds chosen for In DA Zone, the Club’s award-winning dance team. She kept her spot for the next five years.
Rowan is a very articulate kid, with the vocabulary of someone twice her age.

She is a gifted student, and usually knows the answers in the classroom. This, combined with her “artiness” and her Club-nurtured confidence, made her an oddball in elementary school. She thought nothing of practicing a dance routine on the playground at recess, debating the finer points of Harry Potter with a teacher, or spending a free period writing a play. The kids in her class thought she was weird, and she was bullied fairly severely in 5th and 6th grades. Even though she suffered, she refused to “give up herself,” as she put it, by conforming. “I don’t want to act like them,” she said,” If I do it’s admitting that being like them is better, and my real self is bad.” Even so, I’m not sure she could have kept to her principles if she hadn’t been a Club kid. Having the Club as an outlet, a place where she knew she would be accepted and encouraged and have friends, made all the difference for Rowan.

She is now at Burncoat Middle School, in the dance program – where she has found her “tribe” among all the other arty kids. Rowan came out the other side: Because of the Club’s afterschool programs, she now knows that she is strong as well as capable. Due to afterschool commitments, Rowan doesn’t come to the Club every day anymore, but I know that those lessons will last a lifetime. – Malory

… and from our new Youth of the Year

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Anthony Soares began his Club experience when he was seven years old at our Ionic Ave Clubhouse with a swim class taught by Aquatic Director, Ian Witt.

Thirteen years later, Anthony is in his second year as captain of the Worcester Public High School Swim Team, a nationally-ranked athlete, and a certified lifeguard employed at the Club. When he’s not training or working, Anthony is a dedicated volunteer who teaches younger members how to swim.

“Over the past ten years, I’ve had a very enjoyable Club experience. I love being able to go to the Club every day with my friends and have a great time. The Club has given me a safe environment to enjoy the sport I love and help other kids learn how to pursue it. With the help of the Club, I was able to strengthen my swimming skills which led me to the National Swim Meet in Florida 10 years in a row. I wouldn’t have been able to experience these opportunities without the Club,” says Anthony.

When he was in the eighth grade, Anthony took the Boys Scouts’ oath and began working towards his Eagle Scout badge, a goal he hopes to accomplish this spring with the help of the Club.

How Can You Help?

There are several ways to help our organization reach more youth:

Make a financial contribution

Donate items such as clothing, athletic equipment, school and art supplies, etc.

Purchase an annual membership for a child for $25

Attend one of our upcoming events

Volunteer at our Club

Our goal is to serve any child who wants to join our Club.

In order to do so, we need your help.

Assisting our Club in any of the ways listed above makes a big impact. Without the varied support of our friends, we wouldn’t be able to offer our life-saving programs.

THANK YOU!

Boys & Girls Club of Worcester
65 Tainter St.
www.bgcworcester.org

He’s our gonzo City Council candidate!😝💚🇺🇸

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Ron O’Clair – terrific writer💚! Interesting inner-city political candidate.🇺🇸

Why Vote for Me?

By Ron O’Clair

As we head down the road to the preliminary election in September, you have to ask yourself, of all the people running in this election cycle, who am I going to vote for? And why?

A fair question! And one that I hope to give you an answer to here:

I have been working for the last 30 years on behalf of the residents of my beloved City of Worcester, and most never knew what I was doing, nor why I was convinced beyond a shadow of a doubt that it needed to be done.

Someone had to make the sacrifices required to see the job through to its completion.

That someone happened to be me.

All these years I have been cataloging abuses made in various guises by those who are being paid a handsome salary on the back of the average working stiff in the form of – trap of – high taxes$$$. We hoi polloi foot the bills that keep them in clover!

I have nothing against paying our Worcester Police Law Enforcement Personnel a living wage, plus benefits, lest they be tempted to work against us – and for the drug cartels. There have already been cases here in Worcester of that happening – Operation Tune-up!

What I do have a problem with is when the people put in positions of trust and authority over “the people” abuse that trust or authority to deprive the least of us of our inalienable rights to be free and unmolested as we go about our legal and lawful business. I am against those who target certain people based on wrong assumptions.

When these abuses and usurpations of power happen, there is a process in place meant to provide relief for those who are unjustly persecuted, and even maliciously prosecuted, for crimes that either never happened or were blown out of proportion into something bigger for more sentence.

When that process itself is corrupted by malfeasance, ineptitude, cronyism, nepotism and outright favoritism, what is a citizen supposed to do?

Pack his toothbrush as he heads off to do time to satisfy the lust of some jerk putting him or her in jail just because they CAN – and not because a crime was in fact committed!

Well, when the victim happens to be a dual citizen / soldier like me – in service to the United States Government on a Federal Level, there is only one thing to do: INVESTIGATE.

I had the Constitutional authority granted to me as a non-commissioned officer in the rank of E/5 to back my play, and the corrupted County of Worcester had not a freaking clue as to the deep pile of doo doo they stepped into when they attempted to, and succeeded in, covering up for a corrupted Court officer who attempted to murder a prisoner – me! – in restraints, and in custody of the Trial Court of the Commonwealth at 50 Harvard Street that 30th day of September, 1986. A fateful day indeed.

I was nearly killed that day. And the Court Officer was in fact 100% disabled by me so that I could have the ability to breathe back when he let go of my throat after I put his lower left leg bones out the back of his leg with my Air Force low quarter dress shoes that I was wearing at the time of the assault on my person there on my charge of “Disturbing the Peace”!

I want to bring honesty and accountability to our City of Worcester Government, and to do that I need a chair on the Worcester City Council Floor.

Vote Ron O’Clair for City Council and “RULE OUT CORRUPTION” in the City of Worcester.

Ronald O’Clair
ronaldoclair@hotmail.com
(774) 242-1468 for donations of volunteer time or money for the Campaign for Worcester City Council. All donations will go for a worthy cause. Guaranteed.

From Clark U …

Martin, Atyia
Dr. Atyia S. Martin

Clark University
950 Main St.

FREE!

March 21 at Clark U: Boston’s first Chief Resilience Officer to give lecture on ‘environmental racism’

Clark University will host “Environmental Racism: Identifying and Combating Injustice in our Communities and Beyond,” a talk by emergency preparedness expert Dr. Atyia S. Martin and community organizer Rushelle Frazier at 7 p.m., Tuesday, March 21, in the Higgins Lounge, Dana Commons, Clark University campus.

Mayor Martin J. Walsh appointed Dr. Martin as Boston’s first Chief Resilience Officer in August 2015. The goal of Dr. Martin’s two-year position, which is funded by the Rockefeller Foundation’s 100 Resilient Cities program, is to look at how ongoing issues like income inequality, a lack of affordable housing, poverty and racism could play a role in recovery from a disaster.

She is developing a resilience strategy for Boston and leading a city-wide effort to help Boston prepare for, withstand and recover from disasters such as floods, infrastructure failure and terrorism in addition to her focus on addressing social and economic issues.

Dr. Martin previously served as the director of the Office of Public Health Preparedness at the Boston Public Health Commission. She is a veteran of the U.S. Air Force and has worked for the FBI and National Security Agency.

She has also taught in the Master of Homeland Security program at Northeastern University.

Rushelle Frazier is a queer black feminist writer, permaculture educator, urban farmer, counselor and organizer. She is a member of the 2015 Worcester Slam Team and co-coordinator of Choice Words Poetry Series. Frazier uses her passion for poetry and writing as a vehicle for justice and education, and has organized the Worcester Youth Spoken Word since 2015 and is the co-originator of the Dirty Gerund Poetry Show. She is also founder of Neighborhood Botanicals, a Worcester-based company that provides herbal education and related products and services.

This free, public talk is sponsored by the Clark Sustainability Collaborative and Black Student Union.

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Dr. Richard A. Freund

Clark U. to host lecture by archaeologist who discovered hidden Holocaust escape tunnel in Lithuania, March 30

Clark University will host “Escape from the Holocaust: Geoscience and Archaeology,” a lecture by esteemed American archaeologist Dr. Richard A. Freund, at 7 p.m., Thursday, March 30, in the Grace Conference Room, first floor of the Higgins University Center, 950 Main Street, Worcester.

This free, public lecture is sponsored by the The David H. ’65 and Edith Chaifetz Endowed Fund for Jewish Studies.

In this talk, Professor Freund will discuss his recent work in Vilna, Lithuania, where he and an excavation team used electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) technology to uncover an escape tunnel which had been hidden for 70 years. The 100-foot tunnel, which was found between five and nine feet below the surface, had been dug over the course of 76 days by 80 prisoners using spoons and other small tools. On the last night of Passover in 1944, the prisoners attempted the escape the tunnel; only 11 survived. Professor Freund’s team also uncovered a previously unknown mass burial pit next to the tunnel which may hold the remains of thousands of people.

Professor Freund is the Maurice Greenberg Professor of Jewish History and the director of the Maurice Greenberg Center for Judaic Studies at the University of Hartford. His books “Digging Through the Bible” (2009) and “Digging Through History” (2016) have unearthed questions about the past, including the Bible, the lost island of Atlantis, and the Holocaust.

Freund’s discovery made international headlines last year. Professor Freund and his colleagues worked on a “Nova” documentary on this discovery, “Holocaust Escape Tunnel,” which will premiere on PBS on April 19.

🍀🍀St. Patrick’s Day Yum Yums and March Musings by Chef Joey

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Chef Joey!🍀🍀🍀🍀💚

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Papa Joey and some of his family!

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Gigi celebrates her birthday in March. This fab cake was not baked by Chef Joey, but by a neighbor who adores Gigi! WE ALL DO!❤ Happy Birthday, pretty Lil’ One!!

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Go, little girl, go!!!🌸🌻🌹🌺💐

It’s March!

Text, photos and recipes by Chef Joey

Can you even believe it is March?! And March 1 was the first day of Lent – kicking off my “Plan B” of the New Year Resolutions for the 40 days of Lent. I gave up giving up for my Lenten resolution!😉 February was such a tease – brilliant snow storms and record heat … Welcome to New England! So as commences our Lent and what Christianity taught us leading up to “Fat Tuesday” or Mardi Gras, we are done with the fats and in with the lean!

This year is odd because the entire month of March is during Lent, except March 17 – the one meat-eating “sin day” allowed by the Catholic church because, after all, St. Patrick saved Ireland in the 1600s, and it would be a shame to forget him!

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meat …

Lent also reminds me of LENTils! Lentils are wonderful! They are so nutritious and inexpensive and HEALTHY, it is not even funny! The protein and fiber alone in lentils should make them a weekly staple in your diet. So instead of making corned beef this St. Patrick’s Day, you can eschew animal suffering and make a tasty dinner with the same ingredients – minus the meat. You will save yourself money – and your waistline!

So instead of a corned beef and cabbage soup – try a Barley and Legume Soup …

It’s easy to make, oh so healthy and it costs less that $10 to feed 8 people!

You will need:

9 cups (basically a ½ gallon of stock) or water with Bouillon.

You can buy “better than Bouillon” – a jar of paste that has no MSG, and it will last you a few recipes. Knorr has individual ones, as well. You can go the extra mile and boil any kind of veggies, onions, garlic and fennel down to make stock.

Also, this recipe calls for beans. If you buy dried beans, they go a very long way! A ½ cup soaked beans turns into 1 cup of regular beans after expansion.

What’s in the soup? Here is a list:

4 tbsp olive oil

1 onion chopped small (the smaller the pieces the faster they cook)

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Garlic!💚💜💙💛❤😄

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 cup cannelli beans (presoaked or canned)

1 cup soya beans (presoaked or canned)

½ cup chic peas (presoaked or canned) – also called garbanzo beans

¼ cup lentils

½ cup barley

salt and pepper

In a sauté pan, add 2 tbsp oil and the garlic and onion.

While doing this, in a soup or stock pot, bring your stock to a boil.

Sauté the onions and garlic about 10 minutes on a low heat until they start to turn brown.

Add the barley and lentils and coat them with the mixture.

Add all the ingredients to the stock and bring to a boil, lower the heat and let it simmer for a good hour.

Just before serving add the 2 remaining tbsp of oil to the soup and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Enjoy!

*****

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Chef Joey makes the dog food for all his pups! How cool is that?!

Another Quick Lentil Dish … “Puré de Lenticchie” – or Lentil Puree

It is very simple and costs less that $5 to make and serves 4 people. Its called Puré de Lenticchie, or Lentil Puree. You do not have to mash the lentils, but it is a great base if topped with fish or meat. Or you can enjoy it as is.

You will need:

1 ½ cups lentils soaked for 3 hours then drained

1 celery stalk

1 carrot

2 tbsp butter

1 cup heavy cream

salt and pepper to taste

Add the soaked lentils to a pan and cover with water.

Add chopped celery and carrot and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer for an hour.

Drain and pass through a food mill or a blender.

Use the same pan and heat the cream. Stir in the lentils, and when mixed, add the butter.

Season to taste and enjoy!

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Yummy yummy in kitty’s tummy! (Joey doesn’t make his cats their cat food – but he does make them homemade kitty treats!)

Worcester news you can use!

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WORCESTER STORM INFO:

Parking ban in effect early Tuesday, City offices closed, trash collection delayed

Worcester prepares for 18+inch storm!

In anticipation of Tuesday’s snow storm, predicted to drop 18-plus inches on Worcester, City Manager Edward M. Augustus, Jr. on Monday made the following announcements:

CITY STORM RESPONSE

· Public works crews began pretreating the city’s streets at noon Monday and will continue through the evening. Morning crews will be ready to go starting at 4 a.m. Tuesday, with more than 350 pieces of equipment ready to plow, salt and sand.

· The city’s Customer Service line, 508-929-1300, will be staffed starting at 6:30 a.m. through the end of the storm.

· The City’s Emergency Operations Center at the new Regional Emergency Communications Center will open Tuesday morning and stay open throughout the storm, to allow representatives from various City departments, public utilities and the Worcester Public Schools to coordinate their response.

PARKING BAN

· A declared winter parking ban will go into effect at 2 a.m. Tuesday. Residents can check the city’s website to find out where to park on their street. The parking ban is an essential part of keeping the city’s streets clear in a snow emergency, and the Worcester Police Department teams will be enforcing the ban as soon as it begins, with tickets and tows where necessary.

· All municipal garages will be open and free to the public starting at 6:30 p.m. Monday, through the duration of the storm, until 8 a.m. Wednesday.

TRASH/RECYCLING COLLECTION

· Trash and recycling collection will be postponed for Tuesday. Collection across the City will be delayed by one day. Tuesday’s collection areas will be picked up on Wednesday; Wednesday areas will be collected on Thursday, and so on. This will allow for all available resources to be put towards plowing and clearing the roads.

SCHOOLS

· The Worcester Public Schools have canceled classes for Tuesday.

CITY OFFICES CLOSED

· City Manager Augustus has ordered all municipal offices closed on Tuesday, in keeping with Gov. Charlie Baker’s call to keep as many people as possible off the roads. City Hall, the Worcester Public Library, the Worcester Senior Center will all be closed to the public, and to all non-essential city employees.

· All City Hall meetings, including City Council, will be postponed.

· City Manager Augustus also urged all Worcester businesses to consider closing if possible on Tuesday, or to encourage employees whose jobs allow to work from home.

SHELTERS

St. John’s [Church on Temple Street] will again open its emergency overflow homeless shelter Monday evening.

The St. John’s food pantry will remain open throughout the day Tuesday.

The city’s emergency shelter at Worcester Technical High School will be ready if needed for large-scale power outages or other emergencies requiring the sheltering of a large number of people.

*****

Fred Astaire called her “beautiful dynamite” …

Dogs hate crates!

The Free and Easy crowd:

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Lilac! pics: R.T.

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Jett!

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Cece is growing up every day and looking oh so elegant!

By Lindsay Pollard-Post

If there were ever any doubt that dogs hate crates, a clever pup in China cleared that up last month. Security camera footage shows the determined dog unlatching the door to his crate using his tongue and teeth. After freeing himself, he used the same technique to release two other dogs who were confined to crates in the same room. News headlines referred to his escape as a “prison break” — and they were right.

Some people will retort, “My dog loves his crate!” But that’s about as absurd as claiming that inmates enjoy being put in solitary confinement. Sure, some dogs may like napping in a crate — as long as the door is open and they can come and go as they please. No animal “loves” to be locked up with no escape.

People sometimes mistakenly assume that their dogs “love” their crate because they keep returning to it, but what they may really be witnessing is a kind of Stockholm syndrome. Dogs who’ve spent much of their lives trapped in extreme confinement and isolation (i.e., crated) often develop an affinity for their crate instead of bonding with their human family.

Outside the crate, they lack confidence and are sometimes even terrified. This is because dogs can only learn how to get along in their world by interacting with their environment. Every hour spent crated is an hour of life in a kind of “suspended animation” in which their social development is stunted.

It’s not uncommon for people who crate their dogs to keep them locked up for 18 hours or more every day: Nine or so hours while at work (including commute time), another eight hours overnight, plus whenever they go out in the evening or on the weekend and leave the dog alone. All that confinement has disastrous effects on dogs’ health and happiness.

Crating prevents dogs from fulfilling their most basic needs, including walking around, relieving themselves and stretching. According to veterinarian Dr. Michael W. Fox, dogs who are crated are at risk for “multiple health issues related to retention of urine and feces and lack of exercise.”

Muscle atrophy is a concern, too. “In extreme cases, resulting from being caged from puppyhood,” he writes, “dogs can have limb deformities and become permanently crippled.”

And don’t be misled. Crating does not speed up the housetraining process. It can actually prolong it, because puppies can’t “hold it” for long (generally, only one hour for each month of age), and being forced to sit in the inevitable puddles that result can make puppies lose their instinct to keep their surroundings clean.

Crating also frustrates dogs’ innate need for companionship. Dogs are highly social animals; when kept in solitary confinement, many become severely depressed and withdrawn and can suffer from separation anxiety. As Dr. Nicholas Dodman, a veterinary behaviorist at Tufts University, explains, “For [some dogs with separation anxiety] crates are an imposition, a misery, and an obstacle to be overcome at the expense of broken teeth and fractured claws. Owners return home to find these dogs bug-eyed, in a frenzy, and salivating profusely, and may even come home to find the crate splattered with urine, feces, and/or blood.”

Hyperactivity and behavioral issues are other common consequences of crating. Driven to despair and near-madness from constant confinement, some dogs self-mutilate, chewing or licking themselves compulsively. Others wear down or break their teeth by chewing on their cage bars. Some bark and cry incessantly; others slump dejectedly, resigning themselves to their helpless state. And of course, crated dogs have no hope of escape if the house catches on fire or a natural disaster strikes while no one else is home—some have been burned to death or drowned, trapped inside their cages.

Dogs don’t love being locked up. They love their guardians, and they want to be a part of the family, which is why storing them away like a pair of old shoes is especially cruel. As Dr. Fox says, “People who claim to love their dogs and cage or crate them all day may not fully understand the nature of love or the love of dogs. Perhaps they should not have gotten a dog in the first place.”

Chef Joey parked in Speaking Out: Irish “Soda Bread”!🍀🍻🍀

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Chef Joey!🍀🍀🍀

Text and photos by Chef Joey

We have a few things to look forward to this month – we get to change the clocks this weekend and gain more daylight! The days have been waxing right along and now a whole extra hour to adjust to. Then, of course, we have a parade to honor the city’s Irish population for good ol’ Saint Patrick.

Little is known of Patrick’s lifeline, but it is sort of narrowed down to the second half of the 5th century – that’s a long time ago, for sure. What is known about this Saint is that he was born in what is now called Great Britain. His first name was Sucat and he was kidnapped by pirates when he was about 16 years of age. He was a slave to these Irish pirates for about six years, and he managed to escape and get back to his family.

He became a cleric and took the name Patrick, which means “nobleman” and decided to return to northern and western Ireland. Following the path, he eventually became an ordained Bishop. Unfortunately, not much is known about the places he worked – he does get credited for Christianizing the island and for being the first Bishop of Armagh, which is the of ALL of Ireland versus being the Bishop of Dublin.

So Patrick is known as the “Apostle of Ireland” and is the patron saint of Ireland, out showing poor Brigit and Columbia.

What makes his day so special?

It is actually the day of his death. Indecently, Patrick was so sacred it took two centuries to celebrate because it was a sacrilege to mention his name! Well, the real reason I believe is that it falls during Lent, and Catholics lifted the restrictions on eating and drinking alcohol for the day. This religious miracle has promoted and encouraged the tradition of over consumption!

There’s more to the holiday than drinking – eating is a big part of the celebrations. And what meal goes without bread?

So here is an Irish “Soda Bread” to whet yer whistle!

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It is actually a quick bread and its roots go back far by mixing cake or pastry flour, baking soda and buttermilk, causing a chemical reaction to make bubbles in the bread.

INGREDIENTS:

4 cups all-purpose flour

4 tablespoons white sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 tablespoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup butter softened

1 cup buttermilk

1 egg

1/4 cup butter, melted

1/4 cup buttermilk

Optional: 1 cup Soaked Raisins

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and lightly grease a large baking sheet.

In a large bowl, mix together flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt and butter.

Stir in 1 cup of buttermilk and egg.

Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead slightly.

Soak the raisins in warm water for a half hour and drain them and add to the mixture, if desired.

Form dough into a round and place on prepared baking sheet.

In a small bowl, combine melted butter with 1/4 cup buttermilk.

Brush loaf with this mixture. Use a sharp knife to cut an ‘X’ into the top of the loaf.

Bake in preheated oven until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean, 45 to 50 minutes.

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Check for doneness after 30 minutes.

You may continue to brush the loaf with the butter mixture while it bakes.

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Chef Joey’s Irish “Soda Bread🍀: Yum Yum!

InCity Satire😄😄🇺🇸

But first …

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Time to Make Britain the 51st American State!

By Steven R. Maher

With the United Kingdom threatened with a break up due to the Brexit vote, the United States should consider taking back, like an enfeebled parent in need of care from an adult child, a truncated Britain as the 51st state. There would be many advantages for both countries and their citizenry. The politicians in each country would find voter-rich opportunities for political posturing in an enlarged American union.

Last year the British voted to exit the European community, a move now seen as a bellwether for the American election of Donald J. Trump. Scotland wants to secede from the United Kingdom, and the Irish Republic wants back the six counties of Northern Ireland. With a UK breakup imminent, the U.S. should offer the olive branch of reunification to our English cousins.

What would Britain gain?

• All of Britain’s Brexit problems would be solved. Britain would have free access to all 50 American state markets. Financially, the British would fare much better off as a member of the American Union than as a splintered land mass collapsing into independent sovereigns.

• Britain would have to accept the American legal system. This offers numerous positive changes to England (besides judges being banned from wearing those stupid wigs!). This means that British cops (known as “Bobbies”) would have to read suspects their 5th Amendment rights and be subject to civil rights lawsuits whenever they kicked down someone’s front door without a search warrant. Newspapers could print the truth about public figures without being sued out of business. There were good reasons our forebears started a revolution in 1776.

• The British could let the U.S. Congress force a shotgun marriage between the Irish Republic and Northern Ireland. American Congressmen could haul in a rich catch of Irish Catholic votes by bringing about the reunification of Ireland into a 32-country Republic. English Protestant politicians could vote against the deal, knowing it would pass (this would earn them the votes of traditionalists and monarchists.) The truth is, most mainland British politicians don’t want anything to do with the Ulster Unionists, whom they privately regard as an embarrassment. They would secretly delight at being rid of the Unionists and at the same time acting indignantly while voting against Congressional majorities giving Northern Ireland back to the Irish. Like those Massachusetts legislators who recently voted three times against pay raises, and then accepted the pay raises, they could have their cake and eat it too.

• Britain would once again be part of a great country, instead of the piss-ant, third rate nonentity it has evolved into since World War II.

No longer a country with a great past and no future, Britain would once again be part of the pre-eminent world power.

What would the U.S. gain?

• By itself, Britain alone is one of the largest economies in the world. The U.S. could significantly grow its economy overnight by the reunion.

• Britain would have to accept the American system of taxation. This would partly be reparation for British over-taxation of the U.S. prior to the American Revolution and partly to recompense Americans for the British burning the White House during the War of 1812.

• The British health system would be extended to cover the U.S. This would end the American debate over health care. The reunification treaty would specify that Congress would not be able to discuss health care for at least one decade.

• Americans would graciously accept the British monarchy as the head of the American state, with the provision that America remains a Republic. Let Prince Charles represent the U.S. at official functions, such as state dinners and other social events. This will leave President Trump more time for his one true love, sending out messages over his Twitter account.

Populace gains

The populations of each country would gain from reunification.

• The English wouldn’t have to learn English. They could teach us how to use the language. Think of how much George W. Bush or Donald Trump would have gained from elocution lessons in the proper use of the English language!! The British will acclimate to our economy and laws quickly. After all, the British started our economy, and English common law is the basis of American legal doctrine.

• Congress would have to adopt a weekly “President’s Question Time” similar to the prime minister’s questions from Parliament. Trump would love this, answering Democrats’ questions with insults and disparagement. We could watch the two parties hoot and howl at each other like the audiences at a football game. This would probably be a good psychological release for the two parties and Trump. If we did this on Friday afternoons, Trump could watch replays all weekend long.

• Americans could be knighted and become dukes, earls and lords. The Kardashian women could be made princesses, or Brad Pitt a duke (“Duke Brad Pitt” sounds good, like the name of a new fight club movie). We could make Barron Trump a Baron; henceforth he would be known as “Baron Barron Trump.” Nothing less than a Lordship would suffice for Donald Trump; “Lord Trump of Twitter” would fit him nicely.

• American tabloids would be delighted to have new royals to write about. Americans would quickly desire a thirst for stories about royals like “Randy Andy” and “Champagne Charlie.” That’s certainly more entertaining than reading about how Ted Cruz’s father was part of the plot to kill JFK.

• In deference to London sensibilities, the capitol of the state of England would be Liverpool.

• The British parliament would have to take oaths of allegiance to the U.S. Constitution, to protect the Republic against all enemies, both foreign and domestic.

• Finally, the British would give up their ridiculous coinage system. The current system – pounds, shillings, half pennies – never made much sense and is about as useful as the metric system, which should also be discarded.

Britain and the U.S. were allies in two World Wars, the Cold War, and now the war against terror. The Brits have been our closest allies. It’s time we end the divorce and allow Britain to rejoin our country as the 51st state!