BOYS HAVE BRAINS! That’s the hot news that can be extracted (at a stretch) from the facts about this year’s Catskill High School graduates. Seven of the top ten seniors, led by valedictorian Ivi Demi (headed for Cornell University) and salutatorian Vasyl Hereha (Union College) are guys. That ratio marks a big change from recent years, and a contrast with other schools. Ivi Demi is CHS's first male valedictorian since 2001. In the past 11 years, eight CHS valedictorians and seven salutatorians have been female. This year's result is all the more remarkable in light of the numerical superiority, by a margin of about 3 to 2, of girls in the graduating class. In general, near and far, boys out-number girls in bonehead English classes, in Special Education, in drop-out rates. In the realm of higher education, 58 per cent of degrees go to females. (Some of the foregoing information was inserted 6/21, thanks to information supplied by Supt Kathleen Farrell's office).
TOP CATTER. The “Kenny Rich” who fashioned five first-class fiberglass felines that were sponsored for the Cat’n Around featival—COPurr, Country Farm Cat, Blue Jean Cat, Kit-Cat, Star Café--is Kenneth Richards of Catskill, ace air-brush artist (e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org ), former Long Islander, avid drummer, and owner of the ’55 Chevy pickup which is covered in denim. Coating that material, along with Mr Richards’s cats (and those of Cynthia Mulvaney, another Cat ‘n Around superstar) is a water-based material put out by Paverpol North America. For excellent pictures of Catskill’s cats, with brief profiles of the makers: http://cat-n-around.com/artists.html
BETTER YET: attend the Cat Show at the Catskill Community Center, on Saturday (6/21) from 6pm, to see original cat figure designs, a photographic history by Rob Shannon of the making of 'Katzenjammer Kittens,' Flat Cats fashioned by Catskill students, ceramic Kittis designed by youngsters and fired by Imagine That! proprietor Lillian Johnson....
BRIDGE COMMUTER. Peter Markou, elected last spring as Catskill Town Supervisor, has accepted appointment to serve, on a part-time basis, as executive director of Hudson’s Development Corporation and of its Community Development and Planning Agency. He confronted and pondered the possibility of a conflict of interest, and ruled it out. He is returning to a job previously held, happily, under Mayor Rick Scalera.
IN PROSPECT for the mid-Hudson region is restoration, for pedestrian use, of a river-spanning bridge that once was the world’s longest. First opened in 1888, the 1.25-mile bridge connected Poughkeepsie (Dutchess County) to Lloyd (Ulster County). Rechristened “Walkway Over the Hudson,” the restored span, having been closed for many years, will open (all being well) in late 2009, in conjunction with the Quadricentennial celebrations. It will then be the world’s longest elevated park. For more details, click www.walkway.com or (better yet) a comprehensive, illustrated account, click http://thedailygreen.com and then click News and scroll down. (Steering you to The Daily Green is the best thing we’ve done this week).
DOCENTS who guide visitors around the Thomas Cole National Historic Site in Catskill include a lawyer who also is a historian, a magazine columnist who too is a historian, a psychological test designer, a free-lance writer, professional painters (especially of landscapes), an art historian, , interpreters at other historic sites, a historical episode re-enactor, retired teachers and college students. Among these volunteers, the newest ones underwent a two-month training program of lectures and workshops, followed by partnerings with experienced docents. Final step in the process consists of conducting Education Coordinator Gregory Rosenthal on a tour of the site
HONORED recently, with a Medal of Merit bestowed by New York State Commissioner of Corrections, in recognition of her determination in rescuing passengers who had been trapped inside a vehicle that was involved in a crash on the Thruway: Jody Slater, a guard at the Coxsackie Correctional Facility.
AND SPEAKING of that institution, doe anybody know the whereabouts of Denise Robin-Hawkins? Her husband, Michael Charles Hawkins, now of Georgetown SC, would like to know, and he bought a small display advertisement in a Sunday New York Times to broadcast that query. He wants a divorce. The couple were married on April 25, 1987, at Coxsackie Correctional Facility. No information is given about where the couple spent their honeymoon.
UNSUITED. A State Supreme Court judge has dismissed a lawsuit brought by Jared Paul Stern, a part-time Oak Hill resident, against Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton and other defendants. Mr Stern, a former supplier of gossip to The New York Post, accused the Clintons, The Daily News, supermarket mogul Ronald Burkle and other people of conspiring to ruin his reputation. As reported in The New York Times (6/18) Judge Walter B. Tolub dismissed Mr Stern’s complaint in sharp terms, characterizing it as a “political diatribe” which failed to specify the defendants’ the allegedly defamatory deeds. The case’s origins go back to events that gave rise to the accusation that Mr Stern tried to extract a bribe in return for keeping nasty stuff about Mr Burkle, a major Clinton supporter, out of the Post’s gossip columns.
AMONG HOSTS greeting participants in the Greene County Historical Society’s recent organized tour of choice places in Palenville--each one a treat--was Maira Kalman, who is one of New York’s, and hence the world’s, foremost illustrators. Covers on The New Yorker and other magazines. A dozen vividly illustrated books for children. Set designs, handbag designs. Deft, understated illustrations for the pre-eminent book on good writing: The Elements of Style by William Strunk Jr and E.B.White.
DAILY MAUL DEPT. “Nothing gets the old heart pumping like the thoughts of a large, scaly Denison of the deep waters leaping into the air trying in vain to shake my hook…. Then, reality rears it’s ugly head and I remember that most of the fish I catch don’t jump out of the water, their mother’s won’t allow them to….” “There is a $5 suggested donation fee for all classes….” “Alumni duers of $5 are also due at this time which helps to support expenses and alumni mailings.” “The Catskill Town Board has proposed an amendment…which they hope will allow better enforcement of violations.” “Pedal to the mettle.” “In about seven months…it will be the 500th anniversary—the quadricentennial—of Henry Hudson’s 1609 discovery and exploration of the river.” “…Judge George L. Pulver Jr. sentenced Maceo Jones to three and a half to seven years in state prison Tuesday after being convicted of robbery….”
THE WEEKEND. For a rich assortment of choices among activities, click www.greenetourism.com, www.welcometocatskill.com and/or www.allartsmatter.org and www.catskillmtn.org. You’ll find a farmers’ market or two, a “Cat Show,” a Bavarian summerfest, dogs on trial, a play, movies, gallery exhibits, a watercolor painting class, a talk about photography as art. Moreover, bass fishing season opens on Saturday, and so does a new branch (in Coxsackie) of GNH Lumber.
QUERY: Has a code enforcement officer for a GreeneLand town been suspended without pay?
QUEERIES (via Frank Rush). Why did kamikaze pilots wear helmets? Can you cry under water? Why do you have to "put your two cents in" when it's only a "penny for your thoughts"? Once you're in heaven, do you get stuck wearing the clothes you were buried in for eternity? What disease did cured ham actually have? Why is it that people say they "slept like a baby" when babies wake up like every two hours? If a deaf person has to go to court, is the session still a hearing? Why is "bra" singular and while "panties" is (sic) plural? Can a hearse carrying a corpse be driven in the carpool lane? If corn oil is made from corn, and vegetable oil is made from vegetables, what is baby oil made from?