3/05/2008

Big Hole in the Road

Well I see Lisa Sprague's cry for fiscal responsibility fell on deaf ears as usual. I guess those "upstate" folks just had to spend all that money to fix something that was not broken. True, it will be nice for the front street all the way to the BIG to have nice sidewalks on both sides of the road, but all that dough spent on the Bridgegate Square renovation could have better spent by finishing out the sidewalk from in front of the City Drug down to the Old Harbor dock. Now there is a section that is in terrible shape! While out riding around on my "ped" and sticking my nose in other peoples business, I have seen three people take a dive to the ground between Ernies and the next building up the street. Can't remember what it is called this week.

The rains last night, and the ones to come later this week have already worked its relentless, continuing havoc on more of the Neck Road right beside the Trustum Dodge monument. Well I guess we have to wait for the waves to actually begin to break over the road before anyone will behoove themselves to get moving on some sort of preservation of what is left of the dunes there.

Actually, the dunes that used to be there are long gone!! Go down there at low tide and sit on the one remaining seat. As you look out to sea, you will see three large rocks sticking up from the seabed. They are almost in a straight line from the beach outward. See that one the furthest out? When I was between 1 year old and 10-11 yrs. old, that was where the edge of the water was located! My Mom had a big-assed old Packard touring car, about 20 years old at the time, that she used to park right where the monument is now. It would sit there pulled well off the road and perpendicular to it! That thing was about 24 feet long! We would gather up all the beach paraphenalia and make a mad dash to climb over two dunes of black sand, and then three lesser ones made up of white and black sand before even reaching the beach proper! Then it was another few yards the waters edge. Now in my lifetime, I'm now tripping over 70, the beach has totally disappeared. How much longer do you think it will be before those destructive waves will be crashing on the road ?

An alternative to building up next too the road would be to put a nice big long new breakwater from the Old Harbor all the way to Mansion Beach or further. That would stop the big waves, and make one hell of a nice protected harbor for all those yachtsmen who spend no money , TIC, to drop anchor! Wha chu 'tink?? TIFN

43 comments:

Old NFO said...

Nah Ev, that would mean someone would actually have to DO something productive! sigh... Being an Island sometimes is NOT the best thing that can happen, especially with road issues. Hope things work out!

Everett said...

Damn! I'm sure that this little missive had nothing to do with it, but as I took a trip downtown this AM, I noticed that the road in the self same area I was moaning about earlier, has been prepped to receive a new sidewalk! This came two days after they had finished all the other cuts and moved the big-assed machine to another location. Guess they must have just forgotten about it on the original pass down that street.

Anonymous said...

That sidewalk fix in town by Ernie's has been in the plan all along - it just took a couple of law suits from the injured parties to get their attention

Sam said...

I'm curious about Ev's comments about low-lying roads washing out, like along Cork Neck. They say some of the big old hurricanes tried to cut Block Island in half in places.

Where exactly is the Dodge Monument?
-sam

Anonymous said...
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Everett said...

Okay, a few answers as I know them. The Dodge monument is on the right hand side of the road going into the Neck and is about 100yds from The Yellow Kittens.

Yes couple of hurricanes, the '38 and Carol of '54 did cause the water to rise high enough to temporarily divide the Island in two, but only till the tide went out again.

Don't know if there are any lawsuits in effect right down, but can't imagine there aren't considering the number of people I have personally seen take a dive in that area.

The sidewalk in front of Les Slates house didn't collapse of its own accord. It was helped along by a new driver for Arnold's Lumber who put one of the hydraulic lift legs right in the center of the grating and tried unloading a few lifts of lumber!
It is called 'maintenance'.

Anonymous said...

Who would you sue?

Anonymous said...
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Everett said...

Hey ! Its anonyasshole come crawling out from under his rock again. I guess you don't go in much for the new texting language or you might have known that "TIC" as used in the post means "Tongue In Cheek" You DO KNOW what that means I probably mistakenly believe? Being such a "narrow minded islander who knows 'ever'thing and does nothing", I strive mightly to up hold and continue those actions so that you, and you alone, will have an absolutely bountiful box of ammunition from which to extract your slings and arrows to use against me! Oh Damn! I think I feel another barb about to penetrate my oh so delicate phsyce!(sp)

Anonymous said...

Oh, thanks for the laugh! Even I know what TIC is supposed to mean, and I'm not even that well-versed in text message abbreviations.
I don't know, maybe some people aren't either, but I do recall a saying that was so popular some years ago... something about what you could do if you couldn't take a joke.
Also, I'm sorry Ev, I seem to have missed where you were complaining? You do know everything, that seems to be pretty true. Or, if not everything, certainly more than most.

Anonymous said...
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Everett said...

Well, real quick now before they die, go talk to Merril Slate, Arthur Rose, Bill Murray, Dubby Barrows, Allan Hall and Wife Barbara and any other of the "Old original Islanders" you can find an see what they have to say. Even having been only ten or twelve at the time I'm talking about, I think I might just have comprehended the difference between rolling off the side of the road and into the water the way it is now, and having to haul ass as fast as you could over a couple of dunes barefoot to keep your feet from burning up! I know I don't know too much, but I know that much!! I also have pictures of that era, and when I can find them, I'll put a couple up here.

Anonymous said...

So we are talking about 1948, right

Sam said...

It is amazing how islands change every day and every year. I seem to remember some more dunes in that area in the 70's but it looked flatter in 2004.

Every year the winter takes the beach sand away and every summer it washes back. I remember that black sand full or iron, too, but can't recall any for our last 2004 trip. I remember my dad gave me a big ole magnet for my 14th birthday and I farmed those iron filings like a little devil. Somehow I mixed some stuff together and got something to explode ... don't tell nobody OK?

Everett said...

You are right Sam, those dunes on our beach and virtually everywhere else in the world, "travel"! John Brotherhood , a really nice guy who lived here for years, had a couple of film documentaries that some one had made over a sixty year period, and on them you could see dunes being worn away during one time period and then miraculously being rebuilt in the ensuing period. They are "something" that is constantly in flux. Fred Benson another old Islander, 100yrs., used to tell me of how far the water was from the road when he came here as a child, and how much closer it is to the road now! So too mr. annonymouse, who knows I am absolutely full of shit know this, as every other thinking person can deduce, All those beaches, change form on a daily basis! Sometimes it is big changes and at other times it is miniscule. And finally as to how much I really know about anything at all. I watch Jeopardy every night and have since it's inception back in the 50's/60's. I have NEVER, NOT ONCE, been able to get more than 96% of the questions right in any one year! Sad to say also that my lowest percentage for any one year is a paltry 94.86%. Sorry to ruin your day dude!LOLROTFLMAO with my TIC!!! What up Sam!!!

Anonymous said...
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Sam said...

You think the problem dude is none other than the Cyber Sniper? "Hearsay evidence from a dead guy is not allowed, try again": this sounds like a new clone (yipes!) or some teenage melodrama queen.

Erosion rates are thought to be 2-4 feet per year in the Rhode Island area although higher in places. Curiously, there were few online erosion maps such as for other states that show 5-10 feet of erosion "hotspots" and what the shoreline looked like 50 or 100 years ago.

But there is a reason why the Southeast Lighthouse was moved back 300 feet from the bluffs. There is a reason why certain areas of Corn Neck Road are so close to the Atlantic they might eventually fail is a large storm. If people choose not to believe it, that is their business and I won't make fun of the poor, silly devils. /sam

Everett said...

Okay, How about hearsay from a real live person? This guy just happened to mention too me today that he turned on his computer for the first time in months and that this blog came right up. So as I talked to him I asked if he read this post. He said no, so I clued him in as to what has been said and I specifically mentioned mr. snipers remarks about how I have no idea what I'm talking about in regard to the beach. Well this just lit a fire under him and said to tell mr. sniper thqat he is full of shi-, err,sand! He then told me that back in 1949 and 1950, his family rented the building across the street for those two summers. He also recalls that you had to go over one black sand dune, and a couple others before getting to the beach.Why would he remember this in such detail and so clearly? Because the day he turned 11 years old o June 26th 1950 was the day we got into the Korean war!! So this is how he remembers it as well from 58 years ago. Just how long have you domociled here on BI mr. sniper? Anywhere near that number?
You are right Sam, it doesn't sound like the old sniper of yore, unless he has been going to night school! This one sounds almost literate!! Bye now

Everett said...

mr.sniper, I didn't put the guys name up here because of the way you talk to/about people. Send me an email at: elittle@verizon.net and I'll tell you who is was. But I would be careful of how I talk to him as he is just as likely to rip your head off and defecate down your neck!!

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

You really should do some research, but then again why? North Korea invaded the South on 6/25/50. A UN resolution calling for them to withdraw north of the 38th parallel was passed the same day, on 6/27 the UN voted to aid South Korea. Our first action was on 7/5/50,we were soundly defeated and forced to retreat south to Pusan. Here endth the lesson

Sam said...

Wow this is getting fun. Rather than admitting defeat, the Newly Invigorated Sniper-Snot-Wiper says the exact time frame of the "big dunes with black sands" might have been off my a few months or even a year!

Aww, so cute to go down in flames with such a convenient a triviality for you. And a quick check in my history references and the grammar shows that The Sniper ... well what on Earth was he trying to say? Gosh, beats me!

Don't tell anyone but some of the dunes used to be pretty tall (perhaps we were small kids) and we'd get those shipping boxes from the hotels and old New London Ferry and ride those dunes like a toboggan, once flattened right. Hey, a 30-foot ride was better than nothing.

The real on never to tell mom and dad was skidding on our britches down the SE bluffs. We soon realized you had to wear underwear and two denim britches after some road rash. Gosh we made a nice trail. Now that was like 200 feet of fun and a double-dare.

One year some kid or older person died doing that so we stopped. I forget, maybe 1971-1972. Flipped off our nice course and ended up on the cobbles on a deep drop, he did. Didn't he know you're supposed to use your feet as brakes in the turns?

For Island Rescue this was a very big deal and underscored the massive erosion losses where entire sections of Mohegan Bluff were literally falling into the ocean, which is what happened. I have no idea if Everett was on call then or not, other than his family delivered propane to the restaurants I worked illegally. People seemed so like me OK because my name was Sam like Sam Mott, so nobody cared. I remembered them propanes deliveries quite well, and we all snuck cigs when they were playing with the valves and sech.

It seems every 5 years or so I go to BI and it really is getting smaller ... not just because of time and perception but erosion and the constant march of sand towards Sandy Point, and thence out to sea.

Everett said...

Damn mr.snot, that poor 11 year old kid was off by either one day or nine days!No quarter eh? I notice there was a one hour or so time lag between your two posts, just time enough to go do some "research"?
And as you look down your oh so haughty nose we lesser mortals, before you lecture others on history, grammar, spelling etc, you might want to open your Funk and Wagnalls to "coincidence", three "c's", no "s"!

I'll talk to my 'convenient coincidence' today and see if I can put his name up here. Will that alleviate your anxieties?

Anonymous said...
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Sam said...

Why, I'm smoking some hot-dogs right now! Texas BBQ style. Got a nice spread of mustard, ketchup, relish, and kraut. Want a hit?

Anonymous said...

I always knew Sam was tube-steak smoker.

Everett said...

"I" did not use the historical date to validate my point. That was done by the guy who told me the story of that date. I did no more than pass it along as part of HIS narrative! Next time you see VJ McAloon ask him when his birthday is. On to another post!

Anonymous said...
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Everett said...

Well at the behest of someone else a lot smarter than either Cyber Sniper or myself, and in the interests of my continued good mental health,I am going to cut that guy off at the knees! I am getting to old to continue to fight with someone who wields only a seriously damaged weapon when he enters the fray. So from now on whenever he drops a comment, I shall remove it as soon as I know it is there! WHY? Because I can!! So if you want to catch anymore of his misguided ramblings, you should check in here every day, five or six times, before I get too it first!

Anonymous said...
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Sam said...

Aaargggh, you ole pirate you! Going after Frenchie sailors with little white berets and blue tassels, huh?

Hey I got a question ... did Block Island ever have a big old cannon on it? Nothing like a big boom to clear the mind.

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

you should check out the book "Block Island The Sea" by Bob Downie. LOok at page 12, top picture,the dedication of the Trustum Dodge monument 1944. It looks very much like today ,no dunes, no place to park a 24' packard. Bottom picture circa 1950 pretty much the same ,no dunes,the ocean very close.

Everett said...

I also have found a picture from circa 1948. It shows the spot about 50-60 feet to the north of the T. Dodge monument. In it you can clearly see that there are four cars, one being a Packard nosed in to the edge of the "cliff". It also shows that the edge of the water was one hell of a long distance from where it is now, either at high or low tide. The picture is in a word document, and was scanned into it a long time ago. As yet I have been unable to get it out of the word document and into the "blogger" system. I cannot even get it into the 'pictures' folder in My Documents so therefore Blogger cannot 'find' it anywhere 'cause it is ONLY in that word document. Anybody got any ideas how I can move this thing? Failing that, come on over and I'll show you the page in the book. It is there and as they on Judge Judy,"The picture is REAL"!

Anonymous said...

That's not what you said the the post. You said she parked well off the road right where the monument is now, not 50-60 feet north. Make up your mind.

gentle reader said...

To Anonymous:
The economy is in a recession.
Gasoline prices are steadily increasing.
We're marking the fifth year of our nation's involvement in Iraq.
Genocidal hatred still runs deep in some people's hearts.
And you're fixated on the size of dunes around 50 years ago?
Seriously?
Perhaps you should consider creating your own blog for showcasing your thoughts and inspirations? Noting the tenor of your comments I have to wonder as to why you are so jealous of Everett and his blog? I've enjoyed his stories and musing about island life and remain puzzled by your jealousy.
Cheer up! The internet is a vast universe. You, too, can author a blog. Let us know when you do and how to find it when you chose to put the "pen to paper"-- so to speak.
Until then---
maybe you can give your dune fixation a rest?

Everett said...

To Anony: I guess I must have had one of those "brain farts" old people are famous, or infamous for. I mean that not recalling exactly to the inch where I was 60 some years ago! Perhaps you will be able to tell me where you were every day of your life when we meet again in that 'place' reserved for folks like you and me. Oh! Don't want to be equated with me? Oh well, I'll see you in hell anyway and we can fight it out with pitchforks for eternity, if I really believed all that stuff! See! I'm an atheist too!!

Anonymous said...

You make such a big deal of being right. You just can't man up when you are wrong. Your own words sink you. Now you claim old age, Iguess Vin had a brain fart also.

gentle reader said...

To Anonymous:
Once again I raise the question:
Why are you so jealous of Everett? It is so evident in all your posts?

Anonymous said...

Trust me, I'm not jealous of Everett or his blog.

Anonymous said...

Ev have you made it to the libary to check out pg. 12 of Downie's book?

gentle reader said...

To Anonymous:
For real?
Are you still on the Dunes topic?
All of the beauty the island offers.
All of the concerns that the island must address as it daily besieged more and more by twenty-first century cares and demands.

And you're still fixated on the sand dunes.

Dude-you evidently need some help and evidently are jealous of Ev.

Everett said...

Nope, haven't gone down there "cause I have one each ob Bob's books, but am damned if I can find any of them! Must have lent them to someone of the kids and they haven't come home yet. If I could get my picture out of that word document, you could see from the angle it was taken, that the edge of the water was one hell of a long way from the edge of the cliffs/bank, and no where near as close as it is today at either high or low tide. And it does clearly show the cars, big assed-ones parked nose in too the bank edge, and although you cannot see the back end of the cars and the edge of the road, I'm sure that my Mom didn't leave half or more of that ark sticking out into the road. There was SOME traffic back then but minor as compared to these days.