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In These Otsego Hills

March 7, 2013

'This is Your Brain on Music'


“The following thoughts on how to maintain a strong local economy appeared in the Freeman’s Journal in 1928 and were reprinted there in 1978. ‘A thriving community, regardless of its size is always at its best...when it is practically self supporting...Thus, Cooperstown has tried to keep her citizenry supplied. There is little that is obtainable in the largest cities that one is not able to procure here...A good citizen is usually interested in his community and will try to patronize his own town. He tries to back up his own merchants, because he knows they are deserving of such backing...Back up your merchants and you prosper with them. By boosting the ‘Buy-at-home’ movement you will help put your community on the map?’ Some food for thought perhaps.”

As we read this, we could not help but think of the village’s current Economic Sustainability Committee, which is trying to find ways to improve the economy of the village. However, we rather doubt that the committee will find a way to return the village to 1928, but we do think the concept of self-supporting community no doubt had an impact on the viability of the village in the past. Unfortunately, it is a concept that would not seem terribly suited to the way the economy seems to work today. Not only would it not seem possible for Cooperstown to be self-supporting, we are not even certain it is possible for New York state, or even the United States, to be self-supporting in the current global economy.

And while on the subject of the village, we also found what we think is a rather interesting discussion of the village’s official seal. On this subject, we wrote, on Jan. 31, 1990:

“Not long ago Hugh MacDougall of Elm Street asked if we had ever taken careful note of the official seal of the Village of Cooperstown. Indeed we had examined this seal closely several years ago. On the seal one sees an assortment of tools some of which are easily identified and at least one of which is rather difficult to recognize. One can discern a shovel, a rake, a pitchfork with two prongs instead of three and a scythe. One can also see a hammer or mallet and a sickle which tend to impart a somewhat communistic look to the seal. There is also a tool which resembles two milk bottles connected to a rod. No one seems to know from whence came this seal or when it was first used. Someone suggested that the implements displayed thereon were all farming tools and therefore most appropriate for a village in an agricultural area.”

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In These Otsego Hills
  • Thoughts on traffic and roads We recently enjoyed a brief visit from Jon Battle, one of our late husband's college buddies, who always enjoys visiting Cooperstown and passing howdy on the front porch. And while the front porch is not as welcoming as it used to be since there are no chairs on it, we were able to pass howdy from the comfort of our family room. And during the many subjects that we covered in our conversation, the topic of potholes came up.

    July 17, 2014

  • Potholes and oversights bring bumps We have received a number of comments regarding our discussion on potholes in last week’s column. And most of them were in agreement that the potholes are indeed a problem.

    July 10, 2014

  • Potholes need place on village agenda We have long thought that the concepts of perspective and priorities have the ability to present problems for people. As we are inclined to say, getting one's ducks all in a row is often difficult. And as we have learned about issues currently under consideration by the Village of Coopertown it does make us wonder about their ducks.

    July 3, 2014

  • Summer unofficially begins with ice cream Although summer officially arrived this past weekend, we have long thought that the kick off event for the summer season in Cooperstown is the annual Ice Cream Social sponsored by the First Presbyterian Church on Pioneer Street.

    June 26, 2014

  • Splitting logs gives splitting headache We are happy to report that Woodside Hall is continuing with its presentation of programs which are open to the public. This evening at 6:30 p.m., they are hosting Glimmerglass Festival designers Troy Hourie and Erik Teague who will discuss their role in the company's summer production of Strauss' opera, "Ariadne in Naxos: Unplugged."

    June 19, 2014

  • Summer right for driving in the streets We have realized, having consulted our trusty calendar, that next Sunday is Father's Day. And thus this past weekend we were online looking for an appropriate printable Father's Day greeting card which we might send to the wee-we. Since we have been somewhat housebound this year, we have discovered the convenience of printable holiday cards. We used them rather successfully, we thought, when we sent them to the granddaughters for both Valentine's Day and Easter.

    June 12, 2014

  • June musings XXXXXXXX Difficult as it is to believe, it seems we have made it to June which always seems to be a fairly busy month. And this year is no different. In fact when we turned to our calendar to June we were stunned. We always hope to find we are entering a month in which we have little, if anything, planned. But when we turned to June, we quickly realized we were faced immediately with three meeting as well as four follow-up appointments with four different doctors at Bassett. And much as we would have liked to simply move right on to July, we decided that was really not an option. So we are plowing ahead with June.

    June 5, 2014

  • Presidential reading replaces viewing ince we knew we were not in a position to take in any of the festivities surrounding the president's recent visit to the Hall of Fame, we decided we needed to celebrate in another way. And, as luck would have it, we are currently reading the recently released biography, "James Madison: A Life Reconsidered." What better way, we thought, to mark the current president's visit by reading about a former president's life. It seemed perfect. Besides, it gave us a reason to spend the day with our nose in a book.

    May 29, 2014

  • Best not to push luck on spring This week we note that the Literary Discussion Group meeting, originally scheduled for today, May 22, has been postponed until Thursday, May 29 at 2:30 p.m. in the Village of Cooperstown Library. William Shakespeare's "The Taming of the Shrew" will be the topic of discussion at the rescheduled meeting.

    May 22, 2014

  • Thoughts on the upcoming votes Next week, on Tuesday, May 20 voters in the Cooperstown Central School District will head to the polls to vote on three important issues, the CCS 2014-2015 budget, the election of members of the school board and a resolution for changing the funding of the two pubic libraries located within the school district, namely the Village of Cooperstown Library and the Kinney Memorial Library in Hartwick.

    May 15, 2014