All posts by admin

Web-zilla!!!!! (or:The Big “Mack” Attack!)

Mack Fairbanks
Mack Fairbanks

My dear readers, if there’s anything you’ve learned about InCity Times these past seven-plus years, is that we are ambitious – and a wee-bit technophobic, which makes for really interesting newspapering. Yes, yes, we have heard it all before: Rose, all the newspapers have websites!; Rose, ICT needs to be in cyberspace; Rose, think how great this will be for your writers and advertisers! So for four or so years, we’ve been on the fence about an ICT website – vascilating like crazy! To build an InCity Times website – or not to build an InCity Times website? That was the question!

Continue reading Web-zilla!!!!! (or:The Big “Mack” Attack!)

Life with Tyler, a retired racing greyhound

Tyler relaxing by the fireplace!
Tyler relaxing by the fireplace!

By Vanessa Costa

I have to give all the credit to my husband, Bill, for adopting Tyler, our retired racing greyhound, seven years ago. We wanted to get a dog, but with both of us working, I was concerned about how much time we could devote to a pet. Greyhound Friends in Hopkinton was having their semi-annual Open House and before hand my husband visited their website (www.greyhound.org) and immediately fell for one red brindle greyhound named Tyler.

Continue reading Life with Tyler, a retired racing greyhound

Francis J. McGrath versus the Worcester mafia

By Steven Maher

It was the type of press Worcester Mafia boss Frank Iaconi abhorred.

Iaconi’s picture appeared on page one of the November 5, 1946 Worcester Telegram under a headline, “Three sued for $57,300 as a Result of Horse Bet Losses”. There was also a photograph of Ward 3 councilman Philip F. Sullivan.

Jules Vohlgemuth was a Belgian immigrant who had saved $19,000 from stock market investments and his wages as a diesinker. George Trudell had gotten Vohlgemuth to lend him the money under false pretenses, and then lost it betting on horses in an Iaconi Franklin Street gambling den. Vohlgemuth sued Iaconi, Sullivan, and Irving Zabarsky under a state law that allowed for the recovery of triple damages for gambling losses.

Continue reading Francis J. McGrath versus the Worcester mafia

Worcester mafia boss Frank Iaconi’s war with the Providence mob

by Steven R. Maher

Nicholas D. Braniff of Webster Massachusetts had a dog named Rowdy. One night in February 1938 Rowdy began living up to his name, barking loudly, furiously and incessantly. It was the beginning of an incredible chain of events that would destroy the political career of Massachusetts Governor Charles F. Hurley, lead to the impeachment of Governors’ Councilor Daniel H. Coakley, and spark an internecine Mafia gang war.

Braniff was convinced that Rowdy’s nonstop barking was being provoked by burglars inside the next door United Optical plant, which manufactured gold eyeglass frames, and where $8,000 in gold was stored. Braniff summoned patrolman Armand Tourangeau, and headquarters was contacted for reinforcements.

Continue reading Worcester mafia boss Frank Iaconi’s war with the Providence mob

Brief History of Greyhound Friends Inc.

On May 8, 1983, Louise Coleman, a rehabilitation counselor for the United States Department of Labor, visited Wonderland Race Track in Revere, Massachusetts, at the urging of an acquaintance who knew that a discarded racer was due to be killed shortly. With no previous experience with greyhounds, Louise adopted Boston Boy, who received a new name Shadow and another chance. Shortly after the adoption of Shadow, Louise Coleman, with the help of several volunteers, started the work of Greyhound Friends, a small non-profit organization dedicated to saving racing greyhounds, The organization was incorporated in Boston, Massachusetts two years later, and since that time more than 7,000 retired racers have found good and caring homes. The dogs were originally housed in Louise’S home and at the Brookline Animal Hospital, but in 1987 the organization received funding from the Ahimsa Foundation to rent a kennel in Hopkinton, Massachusetts. This remains the main adoption center of Greyhound Friends, and it is here that the dogs are prepared for their new lives.When they are received, they are groomed, treated medically, nourished with high quality food, waled and reassured, and outfitted with as new collar an leash. They respond almost immediately to kind treatment and most dogs are readied for adoption in just a few days.Greyhound Friends has many volunteers who help with all aspects of the work.

Continue reading Brief History of Greyhound Friends Inc.

Senator, have you no shame?

By Jack Hoffman

It’s about the second week of September: It didn’t take long for the post convention Pailin balloon to begin loosing some air – Two interviews on ABC and Katy Couric and we now understand why the McCain campaign is keeping her away from the press. The polls are beginning to turn the Mc Cain convention bounce around almost 4- 5 points -Obama once again regains the lead.

Continue reading Senator, have you no shame?

Worcester not only city without air service

By Steven R. Maher

Worcester critics often point to a lack of airline service at Worcester Airport as unique to the city. Yet it’s a problem other municipalities are facing as well.

“Financially strapped airlines are cutting service, and nearly 30 cities across the United States have seen their scheduled service disappear in the last year,” the New York Times reported in a May 21, 2008 article entitled ‘Airline’s Cuts Making Cities No-Fly Zones’. “And the service cuts are far from over, as jet fuel prices rise, airlines shut down and companies consider mergers, like the Delta-Northwest deal.”

Continue reading Worcester not only city without air service

Talk about flip flopping

By Jack Hoffman

Almost five years has past since Rose Tirella, the publisher and editor, first approached me with the proposition of doing a political column. Make no mistake I was excited about the challenge since the closest I came to an op-ed was several pieces I had done on local politics here in Framingham. But I wanted to be sure I would be working with those that espoused the same progressive politics that I had over the years. I wanted to work with a true alternative progressive paper.

Throughout the years Rose and I had some differences of opinion. We never disagreed on the progressive ideals of the Democratic Party. Rose was not so happy with my support for Obama. But she never put me in a corner, or chopped and channeled some of my more inflammatory columns.

I always believed Hillary would be a lot of baggage for the party. Something that was evident from the conservative haters of the airways and press who fought her at every campaign stop- it was a clear and present danger signal that her winning would be great fodder for the Republicans and the big enchilada that awaited the Democrats if she was the nominee. But more importantly she ran a poor campaignwith lots of harm from papa Bill. When Obama was sure to be the nominee she began to show me a side I could not believe. If it wasn’t the nasty press and that bastard Chris Mathews etc, “It was the liberals who out of guilt voted for a black person.” I sought of let that last comment sit for awhile. After all it’s not so easy to digest that kind of comment coming from someone who has always shown support for whoever the democratic candidate was. She even admitted she might consider McCain. I figured that was enough for the time being -I went back to my Apple.

Continue reading Talk about flip flopping

Jesse Pack: a boy finds himself (Part 1)

By Rosalie Tirella

In honor of Worcester’s annual Get Your Pride on Celebration, InCity Times interviews Jeese Pack of AIDS Project Worcester. Jesse made the courageous (he’d say natural) decision to “transition” from a young woman to a young man at the age of 19. Here’s his story.

Rose: Let’s talk about the event [the Get Your Pride On celebration – see our “ad”] on Water Street, Worcester Pride and the role your group is going to play.

Jesse: First, it’s going to be a lot of fun. I encourage anyone who’s going to be in Worcester to come to it. … There is going to be a pretty strong transgendered presence there. … Gunner Scott, who is the current director of the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition, is going to speak during the political rally. There’s going to be a Mass Trans Political Coalition booth and table at the event, and they’re going to be passing out information about legal rights and needs of trans people. AIDS Project Worcester, as usual, is going to be a very strong presence there, with outreach workers. We’re gonna have our own table.…

Continue reading Jesse Pack: a boy finds himself (Part 1)

By Steven R. Maher

The question of civil service protection for local police departments has emerged as a sleeper issue in the state senate race between Douglas A. Belanger and Michael O. Moore. Belanger in 2004 proposed removing civil service protection for the Leicester police chief. Moore is a steadfast supporter of civil service.

Removing civil protection requires a charter change, or home rule petition to the state legislature. Generally, the legislature does not approve home rule petitions if they are opposed by the local state representative or state senator. If elected, Belanger or Moore would be in a position to kill any proposal to remove civil service in their districts by home rule petition.

Continue reading