Saturday, October 23, 2010

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We here at PPE or looking for a new contributor.

If you think you would like to write articles for this blog please contact us with your resume'

We are looking for someone that can write articles about something that they like themselves for example; you like to take walks and take pictures and you can write about it, or you have a hobby that you'd like to write about, or maybe you like to review movies or talk about politics here's your chance. See just about anything that's interesting  and you're in.

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The History Of Pocomoke By Murray James (20)

CHAPTER XXIV. S ( ) C I A L A S P E C T ( C O NT] N U E D . ) Again, the dance was a favorite source of social enter- tainment in the early history of New Town. There were three classes of characters, which I shall describe, partici- pating in this amusement. First, the first citizens ot the town engaged in it. Sometimes it was the result of a wedding, a cotton picking, quilting, or it may have been a special dancing part v. I am not now describing the balls held at hotels where a gentleman and lady could enter by paying the entrance fee, but social dances held at private houses for amusement.

The host and hostess would pro- vide such - things as wines, liquors, candies, cake and tropical fruit to make the entertainment as enjoyable as possible. The invited guests would assemble after candle light. They were composed chiefly of single persons, but sometimes there would be a small sprinkling of married ones also. An expert fiddler would be engaged. All things being ready and the parties on the floor, the fiddler having his fiddle well tuned, would draw his bow at full length, when a feeling of exhilaration would go through the room like electricity. The parties now engaged in a four or eight-handed reel. Oh! what a tine time there was.

Formerly New Town. 157

 The cotillions, waltzing, capering, parties passing each other on the floor, crossing and around the room, cutting the pigeon wing, etc. After that reel was over the hat would be passed around to take a collection for the fiddler, for that was the way he was paid for his services. Then another party would be made up and after the dance the hat was passed around again, and so the night was spent till or near the break of day. When they would get weary and laint they would keep their spirits up by pouring spirits down. At such places of hilarity many a young lady's heart and hand has been wooed in marriage. Secondly.

The lower class of society in the country, both of men and women, would attend the holidays in New Town. On those occasions they assembled at the hotels and engaged in the dance, and some of the same order of men in New Town would participate with them. It would be a novel sight at the present day to see such a gathering ol men and women at a hotel engaged in a regular hoe down, such as was practiced then. Thirdly.

This class would be the colored people. They would assemble in town from all the surrounding country. They would construct booths on the hill or public square, in which they would have for sale cakes, candies, cider, beer and tropical fruits. They would have all sorts of jollity, boxing, wrestling, pitching quoits, dancing after the riddle and pattywhack. This word pattywhack of itself is unmeaning, hence I shall be under the necessity of explaining the process of the dance in this way.

The 15S History of Pocomoke City,

company would be in the open air on the hill. The leader in this amusement would pat with his hands and stamp with his foot while the rest would dance. The leader would use some outlandish expression in song, such as the following : "Juber up and Juber down, Juber all around de town. 7 ' And when they would reach the climax, he would sing- out with an extended voice ■ " Jump over double trouble Juber." Then such antics and gymnastics as the dancers would perform with their hands and feet, keeping time with the leader, as would be truly diverting to the reader could he behold such a performance now.

Another song which they would sing in their dances was : "Possum up de gum bush, Raccoon in de holler. Saddle on de gray marc, Martingil and collar." I have endeavored to spell their words as the}- would pronounce them, Late in the afternoon, they would be seen with their little bundle of cakes, getting ready to start for home. Thus the day closed with them.

The social aspect of New Town, now Pocomoke City, has undergone a change for the better. Whereas in the description already given of social life, in the early history of New Town, as contributing to the pleasures and passions of the animal, now it is seen in the improvement of the intellec-tual and religious part of man.

Formerly Nevj Town. 151)

Sociability seems to have .left the lower walks of our fallen nature and is aspiring to a higher sphere of our manhood, as may be seen in the following instances, namely : in the formation of literary and beneficial societies, in the mingling together in the pursuit of knowledge. Indeed, the free public school system, in the Pocomoke City High School, has contri- buted largely to, and has acted a very important part in the social status of Pocomoke City.

Here mind is pre- eminent, and the scholars who possess superior intellect are honored for their talent, and their society is appreciated whether they be rich or poor. Again, the various picnics and festivals gotten up for the promotion of education, churches, sabbath schools missionary and other benevolent societies, in which all have an interest, and all mingle.

Although the different churches may in one sense be considered distinct commu- nities, yet when contemplated in their great work oi doing good they are one grand whole, emulating each other in elevating society and promoting the social and religious bearing of Pocomoke City. Again the improvement of the musical talent, by the young folks, has contributed largely to social life in Pocomoke City. Whereas instead •of listening to the old timey songs, in the days of yore, by uncultivated voices, now it is simply fascinating to listen to the select pieces of music as sung either in the choir, .at concerts, or in social gatherings by those who have cultivated voices, and who are well educated in the science

160 History of Pocomofa City,

of music. The query may be agitated, what has produced such a change in the social condition? Answer. It may be the increase of the population, a higher grade of schooling and the influence of the churches.

Formerly New Town. 161 CHAPTER XXV. MORAL ASPECT.

The moral aspect of New Town in its early history. Although there were some good and holy people in New Town, whose lives stood out as burning and shining lights, and although the gospel was making successful attacks on the fortifications of sin and wickedness, and winning" many jewels from the rank ;md file of sinners, and presenting them as trophies to the Saviour of men ; yet the morals of the people, as a whole were compara- tively at a low ebb. In order to see more clearly the debased state of morals, I will give you some few specifi- cations for illustration, for instance : the habit of drunken- ness, though it was always condemned by the good and true, yet it was winked at, and the votaries of the practice moved along in society as though nothing very serious had hapened.

Again, the habit of swearing was very common. When men would meet in New Town, on Saturdays, on business or for social interview, for that was the public day, he that could swear the keenest, sharpest oaths, attracted the greatest attention, especially from the boys.

162 History of Pocomoke City,

If there was a fray on hand, lie that could use the most awful asseverations and foul-mouth imprecations as though he were commissioned from the bottomless pit, serpent like to infect his poison, was the greatest man of the crowd. Again, gambling was much in vogue, gambling socially and for money, and many were the times that men would lengthen out the midnight taper till the dawn of coming day, using all their ingenuity to get each others money.

Again conjuration, fortune-telling, witchcraft and super- stition were all 'believed to be as true as preaching, by the lowest class of society. But while conjuration and witchcraft have long since disappeared from society, fortune-telling and superstition have lingered longer, and there may be some of the old folks now living, particularly among the fair sex, who have had their fortunes told by the cutting of cards or the grounds of a coffee cup, in order to learn who their future husbands would be.

Perhaps there may be some of those already spoken of who have showed the new moon a piece ot silver in order to have good luck that moon, or who believed in sowing certain seeds on certain states of the moon as sure, only then of vegetating, or who have their pork butchered on the increase of the moon in order for it to swell, believing if the moon is on the decrease the pork would shrink. But these practices, to some extent, have gone into the shades and the people have already learned that the only road to success in any enterprise is application ; that the diligent hand maketh rich, while laziness and idleness paves the way to poverty and ruin.


The temperance cause as a distinct organization was unknown in the early history of New Town. The only thing- bordering on temperance was the denunciations against drunkenness from the sacred desk, which declared that " drunkards shall not inherit the kingdom of God." Notwithstanding this first out-beaming ol the temperance cause from the pulpit, professed Christians would some- times be seen with flushed cheeks and tongues unbridled, as the result of the too frequent use of the glass. Indeed, the habit of drinking spirituous liquors, with the exception of a very few. was quite common in families, in social gatherings and in business life.

In all these relations the social glass was indulged in freely. I have already stated in another part of this history that to be successful in merchandising it was considered absolutely necessary to sell liquor. Hence all who engaged in the sale oi goods, without an exception, sold spirituous liquors. In view of this state of things it cannot be wondered at that there should be drunkards and a plenty of them too.

While the vender would fatten upon his ill-gotten gains, 164 History of Pocomoke City, his victims with their families and children would be left destitute, in want and clothed in rags, and sometimes it was the case that the wives and little ones would be sitting over a lew coals of fire contemplating their wretched condition, with scarcely a ray of hope for the future, with no refuge to fly to except to Him who heareth in secret.

Oh ! how many broken-hearted wives have poured forth their bitter cries for help in His Almighty ear and told their tale of sorrow and inquired of Him, " How long, O Lord, how long shall this state of things last?" Well, their prayers have been answered, but not in stopping the vender from his wholesale ruin of men, women and chil- dren ; not in restoring to her former condition of happiness rand joy that mother who was being murdered by piece meal; not in restoring to hope and cheerfulness the forlorn condition of the little children.

But their prayers have been answered in another way. Time rolled on and brought its changes. The vender with his victims have passed away to a future reckoning, and to that tribunal whose decisions are in righteousness. If I could, I would call the vender back and inquire of him who they are that accuse him before the throne, for their name is legion. There was no material change in society upon the subject of temperance until 1835, when the Rev. Mr. Dorsey of the Baltimore conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church came down here and lectured upon that subject, and organized a temperance society. That society only forbade the use of spirituous

Formerly New Town. 165

liquors as a beverage. Up to this time all the stores sold spirituous liquors. The first one to break ground and give up the sale of it was Rev. John D. Long who was at that time but a youth not having arrived to his majority. He had but recently joined the Methodist Episcopal Church and listening to the lecture became convinced that the sale of it was wrong and determined to give up the practice forthwith.

It is true that Mr. Long sold goods at the ferry, now the bridge, on the identical spot where the phospate factory now stands, but I associate him, in this instance, with New Town, because he was a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church here, because his associations were here, and because he was identified with the temperance movement in New Town.

He was telling a veteran Methodist of his determination to quit selling liquor, when the old soldier said to him "Brother Long if it is wTong for you to sell it, it is wrong for me to distil it." Forthwith they abandoned the manufacture and sale of it. The temperance cause now began to be agitated in New Town. In 1836, Wm. Townsend opened the first store for the sale of goods, without spirituous liquors, in new Town.

After awhile the old Washingtonian club of reformed drunkards, which was organized in the City of Baltimore, began to create a stir in favor of temperance. Some of their number came down here and lectured. Thus the temperance cause progressed until the organization of the Sons of Temperance, in 1847. The Sons of Temperance

166 History of Pocomoke City,

was also a beneficial society, it prospered for a while and seemed to be well adapted to the circumstances of the times. During its palmy days, the society built a fine temperance hall, which at present is owned by C. C. Lloyd, Esq., and has been occupied by him, as a drug store, for several years past.

The upper story was in one entire room, and was occupied by the society. The lower room was fitted for store purposes, and was first occupied by Irving Merrill, Esq., who sold goods on strictly temper- ance principles. The society had placed in the gable end of the building a marble slab, with the iollowing carved upon it : " New Town Division, Number 43, Sons of Tem- perance, instituted March 29th, 1847 ; ' which still exists as a monument of the prosperity of the temperance cause at that day. This society existed, however, but a few years, when it was dissolved and the beautiful temple was sold, and went into other hands. In 1870, another temperance society was organized in New Town, with the name of Good Templars.

This society was also of short duration, it existed about two years, when it also became extinct. From 1872 to 1881, there has been no regular temper- ance society in New Town, now Pocomoke City. During 1 88 1, a society was organized in the place, in support of Local Option Reform, and the friends of temperance are mustering their forces for victory. But while temperance societies have been organized and dissolved, it only shows that the war. for the extirpation of spirituous liquors, in

Formerly New Town. 167

Pocomoke City, has been going on without any com- promise. The churches also have kept up the war cry and are pressing hard upon this demon ot de- struction, and they are forcing him, by the power of the Gospel, to surrender. If the question should be asked by a stranger, what are the signs of complete victory for the cause of temperance in Pocomoke City ? This question will be answered in the following way : whereas, in 1836, every store in New Town sold spirituous liquors, now in 1882, there are thirty-two business houses in Pocomoke City, and not one of them sells it except the apothecaries who sell it as a medicine.

So thorough has been the revolution in society, upon the subject of temperance, that I might venture the prediction that there is no one who could, now, succeed in merchandising, in Pocomoke City, who would also sell liquor. It is true that there are two places in Pocomoke City where spirituous liquors are sold as a beverage, one is a saloon the other is the hotel bar, but the friends of temperance, I am apprehensive, will not cease their efforts until these places will be so restricted by legislation that it will not pay to sell it.

NEXT: 168 History of Pocomoke City, CHAPTER XXVII. SCHOOLS.

Previous Chapters by reader request



















Punishment For Robbers............

Tehran – Iranian authorities have cut off a hand of a man found guilty of two robberies in the northeastern holy city of Mashhad, the ISNA news agency reported on Tuesday.

"This man took part in two robberies along with another man," Mohammad Zoghi, prosecutor general of Mashhad, was quoted as saying without naming him.

"We asked the judges to focus on amputations because we are responsible for protecting life and property of people," he said, adding that "there will be other cases (of amputations) in the future".

ISNA said the hand was cut off in front of other prisoners.

Last July, Iran amputated the hands of five other people charged with theft in the northwestern city of Hamedan.

Islamic sharia law in Iran allows amputation as a punishment for those accused of repeated thefts.

In recent years, cases of amputation have increased due to a rise in robberies on the back of rising poverty in the country.

Worcester County District Court Cases

The following cases were heard in Worcester County District Court in Snow Hill by Judge R. Patrick Hayman on Oct. 8 and Oct. 12, 2010.

Cheryl Courtney Magee, 36, of no fixed address, was charged with peace order: failure to comply, harass: a course of conduct and telephone misuse: repeat calls. The verdict was guilty for the first charge. Nol pros was entered for the other charges.

Blair Lynn Wallace, 20, of the 10000 block of Germantown Road, Berlin, was charged with possession of controlled dangerous substance paraphernalia. The verdict was probation before judgment.

Russell Bailey, 18, of the 700 block of Ninth Street, Pocomoke City, was charged with trespassing on posted property. Nol pros was entered.

Frank Anthony Gerlando Jr., 46, of the 300 block of Seventh Street, Ocean City, was charged with two counts of assault second degree, animal cruelty and sex offense fourth degree. All charges were placed on the stet docket.

Michele L. Wilkerson, 29, of the 6000 block of Willing Drive, Salisbury, was charged with bad check/utter/non-sufficient funds/under $500 and theft of less than $1,000 value. Nol pros was entered for both charges.

Dorothy Sturgis, 36, of the 1000 block of Ellis Street, Greenbackville, Va., was charged with vehicle/rented: failure to return. Nol pros was entered.

Orval Whaley, 32, of the 500 block of Bay Street, Berlin, was charged with assault second degree. The charge was placed on the stet docket.

Derek John Wood, 27, of Bloomington, N.Y., was charged with dangerous weapon -- conceal. The charge was placed on the stet docket.

Jessica Paige Therres, 20, of the 10000 block of Adkins Road, Berlin, was charged with possession of alcoholic beverage under 21. The verdict was probation before judgment.

Jessica Paige Therres, 20, of the 10000 block of Adkins Road, Berlin, was charged with malicious destruction of less than $500. Nol pros was entered.

Lakeisha Faye Salaam, 24, of the 800 block of Lynnhaven Drive, Pocomoke City, was charged with theft of less than $100. The verdict was not guilty.

Douglas Eugene Lesher Jr., 21, of the 700 block of Walnut Street, Columbia, Pa., was charged with possession of marijuana and possession of controlled dangerous substance paraphernalia. Nol pros was entered for both charges.

Jorma John Wilson, 25, of the 1000 block of Adams Avenue, Salisbury, was charged with assault second degree. Nol pros was entered.

Randy Antonio Torres-Quinones, 19, of the 1000 block of Madison Road, Stockton, was charged with theft of less than $1,000 value and burglary fourth degree theft. Nol pros was entered for both charges.

Randy Antonio Torres-Quinones, 19, of the 1000 block of Madison Road, Stockton, was charged with theft of less than $1,000 value and unauthorized removal of property. Nol pros was entered for both charges.

Keshawn Jermaine McNeil, 26, of the 5000 block of Onley Road, Girdletree, was charged with possession of marijuana. Nol pros was entered.

Jessica Rose Weinberg, 23, of Samaritan Ministries, 800 block of Fourth Street, Pocomoke City, was charged with theft of less than $100. The verdict was probation before judgment.

Lakesha Faye Salaam, 24, of the 800 block of Lynnhaven Road, Pocomoke City, was charged with trespassing on private property. The verdict was guilty.

Zachary Alex White, 20, of the 600 block of 142nd Street, Ocean City, was charged with possession of alcoholic beverage under 21. The verdict was probation before judgment.

Arthur Lee Hemmeain, 59, of the 900 block of Clarke Avenue, Pocomoke City, was charged with alcoholic beverage/prohibited place drink. Nol pros was entered.

Marion Levstek, 73, of the 800 block of Cedar Street, Pocomoke City, was charged with theft of less than $100. Nol pros was entered.

Breon Odale Ayres, 19, of the 500 block of Bonneville Avenue, Pocomoke City, was charged with trespassing on posted property. The verdict was not guilty.

Alexander Michael Rettig, 25, of the 60 block of Cresthaven, Berlin, was charged with willfully acting in disorderly way. The verdict was not guilty.

Donovan Michael Lange, 18, of the 100 block of Louis Se Terrace, Glen Burnie, Md., was charged with possessing fictitious license. Nol pros was entered.

Delegate Candidates Speak At Forum

BERLIN – During a candidate forum last week, the four District 38B House of Delegates candidates were asked about their collective economic backgrounds in managing budgets, experiences that will likely serve the eventual winners well when they get to Annapolis.

A diverse filed of candidates are vying for two District 38B House of Delegates seats including two Democrats and two Republicans, although the top two vote getters will emerge victorious regardless of party affiliation. With the state’s economy still stalled in a lingering recession, budgets and finances are at the heart of the issue in the upcoming election, and each of the candidates was asked during last week’s forum about his or her economic backgrounds.

“I have a checkbook and I have to balance it every month,” said Republican candidate and Pocomoke Mayor Mike McDermott. “I’m also the chief of police in Snow Hill and have to get by on what you can imagine is a very meager budget, so I understand living inside my means. This is where Maryland has gotten so far off track.”
Democratic challenger and Berlin Mayor Gee Williams said he would draw on his collective life experiences in the private and public sectors if and when it came time to deal with the state’s finances.

“I’ve owned and operated newspapers in the private sector, I’ve worked for the state of Maryland with the State Highway Administration and I now work in the non-profit community,” he said. “In addition, I’m the mayor of a municipality, so my unique experiences have prepared me for this challenge. The one thing I’ve learned is that life is too costly and too complicated for government to be the answer for all things.”

Like Williams, Republican challenger Marty Pusey has a wealth of experience in managing budgets from which to draw from should she be elected. Pusey said reigning in spending is imperative with the state budget continuing to swell.

“In my capacity with the health department, I oversee about 20 different budgets, and I also own my own business, so I have practical experience,” she said. “Maryland is looking at a $2 billion deficit this year that could swell to $8 billion in five years. We need to get our house in order and we need to see pork spending come to a halt.”

As the lone incumbent in the field, Democrat Norm Conway said state lawmakers have worked in earnest to curb spending while maintaining programs for those who need them the most.
“In the General Assembly, we have reduced spending and we have been extremely careful to maintain fiscal prudence and social responsibility,” he said.

The state’s economic recovery is largely dependent on a robust business climate, but Maryland has a growing reputation for becoming increasingly unfriendly to new business with an onerous tax structure and increased regulation. The candidates were asked what they thought could be done to relax the rules in Maryland. Conway said over-regulation and hefty fines were at the heart of the issue.

“I’m aware businesses come in and talk about Maryland’s regulatory process,” he said. “The fines are out of control and unreasonable and we have to work toward modification, but there has to be a process.”

Pusey said over-regulation in Maryland was stifling the state’s economy.

“Every time we pass another regulation, we take away choices,” she said. “There is an obvious place for regulations, but they have to be based on real science. The current assault on poultry and agriculture in general is unreasonable.”

Pusey said state lawmakers need to curb their collective zeal for new regulations.
“For every new law that’s passed, we should have to eliminate two older ones,” she said. “The number of new laws and regulations is out of hand.”

Williams said while the intent of many state regulations is founded in common sense, the focus is often changed in the implementation.

“In many cases, they take a good law but put in place regulations that hurt the towns,” he said.

“When applied to the private sector, the results can be devastating. In most cases, the law is good, but the application is unreasonable.”

McDermott echoed Pusey’s sentiment about over-regulation in Maryland, although his remarks took on a decidedly harsher tone. He pointed out the impacts of increased state regulations on agriculture, for example.

“Over 1,500 bills carried forward in Annapolis,” he said. “That’s an outrage and we’re not going to tolerate it. We’re myopic in Maryland. It’s a one-party system and you’re not getting Eastern Shore values heard in Annapolis. They’re tone deaf to what’s going on down here and if we don’t change this, we’re going to lose a way of life forever. If we don’t stand up for our farmers now, when are we going to do it.”

At the end of the forum, each of the four District 38B candidates was allowed to sum up their bids with a brief closing statement. Williams urged voters to look at his record as mayor of Berlin when heading to the polls in November.

“If you want a better future for the Lower Shore, you need somebody who knows the difference between spending and investing public dollars,” he said. “My record is creating jobs, supporting the environment and creating business relationships.”

For Pusey, the election boils down to satisfaction with the status quo or an opportunity to affect real change in Maryland. She referred to the current tax and spend attitude in the state as an addiction.

“I bring a unique combination of experiences and skills to the table,” she said. “We need a change of attitude. We have an addiction of taxing and spending and we need to change that culture.”

McDermott, for his part, went beyond calling for change in the upcoming election. The Pocomoke mayor said there might never be a greater opportunity to dramatically change the culture in Annapolis then November 2.

“It’s the election of our lifetime,” he said. “The issue tonight is about wholesale change and how this state will survive. Philosophically, we need to change how this state is run. If we don’t make this state more business friendly, we’re going to get bigger government and more taxes.”

McDermott also took the opportunity to call out the district’s current representation in Annapolis, essentially accusing them of paying lip service to conservative Eastern Shore values.

“They get to that bridge with their conservative Eastern Shore values, but they leave them in a bucket on the bridge and pick up their liberal values on the other side,” he said.
For his part, Conway took exception to McDermott’s pigeon-holing the district’s representatives into neat and tidy partisan definitions.

“I don’t consider myself a liberal or a conservative,” he said. “I believe in paying my way with fiscal prudence and social responsibility.”

McDermott called out Conway and fellow District 38B Delegate Jim Mathias for voting for a tax increase package during a special session two years ago. However, while Conway acknowledged voting for the tax hikes, he reminded those attending the forum much of the revenue was dedicated to important projects in the district.

“I voted for those taxes, but only because one half of one penny on the tax rate was dedicated to restoring the Transportation Trust Fund,” he said. “That one half of one penny kept Route 113 going and that same half of one penny will improve Route 589.”
News Editor, Shawn J. Soper

Monster Display Too Scary And Is Shut Down


They're creepy, and maybe a bit kooky. But for some, Georgette Gaynor's monsters were too spooky.

After several complaints and a few screams from startled customers, Gaynor had to take down her 78 life -size monsters that populated the Greenbrier Dodge showroom at 1717 S. Military Hwy.

Gaynor said she was told that some people objected to the display.

"They were so real-looking," said Tom Robertson, Greenbrier Dodge general sales manager. "More than one person would walk in the door, and not paying attention, would look up and be startled by one of the monsters in front of them."

One was so scared she screamed and fell, Robertson said.

Gaynor, of Virginia Beach, spent six days hauling her monsters, fashioned out of spray foam, plastic netting and wire-mounted on PVC pipe, to the dealership, along with 700 pounds of weighted bases and iron poles to display the creatures. It took three days to set them up. The display was to be open to the public, and all were for sale for $150 to $250.

Two years ago, she displayed her monsters at The Gallery at Military Circle as part of an effort to collect non-perishable foods for the Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia.

In 2007 her creatures were exhibited to help raise money for the Kempsville Middle School drama club. About five years ago, she also created a haunted hall at Norfolk State University.

Her displays include a foursome of werewolves playing Texas Hold 'e m and Frankenstein's monster, along with a gallery of ghouls with names like Johnny Eyeballs, Crowbar Pete, Cruell Krull and Gruesome Guntar.

While scaring people was one thing, losing sales was another. One customer called the display demonic, Robertson said.

"Some people take the holiday of Halloween in a different way," Robertson said. "They'll plan out costumes and decorations three to four months in advance. But others consider it satanism."

The final straw was when one potential customer refused to walk through the showroom.

"He told us he loved his salesperson, but he couldn't buy a car in this environment," Robertson said.

The dealership offered to bring a car to the customer's home, but the potential customer refused, citing the company's business environment and beliefs.

"It was the hardest thing I've ever had to do," Robertson said. "But I run a business here. Two to three percent of the people who saw the display didn't get the right feeling about the message we were trying to have with Halloween, and once they go out and tell five others, then it can cause more problems."

Gaynor was paid a bonus for quickly dispatching the display and to make up for some loss in sales of her creatures.

"This broke my heart," Robertson said. "But for some, Halloween is devil-worshipping."

Friday, October 22, 2010

'Bog Hog' Flips At Gumboro

The spectators always love to see Aaron Ellis and the 'Bog Hog'.

Big Tire Modified- Bog Hog time was 4.151 seconds

Last race day of 2010 -- 10.09.10

This roll over, once again, could have turned out to be something horrible.

The people that you see running to the truck after it came to a rest were in the pits. The jumped the chain fence to get to Aaron. It wasn't until AFTER three drivers from the pits had arrived on the scene that only ONE from the Gumboro crew came to his aid! Slowly, yes I mean slowly, they trickled in. What's the problem here? What in the heck were they waiting for?

Again, there was NO ambulance on the site. Suppose this driver had suffered a neck injury? How long would it take to get paramedics to the scene.......after all, it was a beautiful Saturday afternoon and I am sure under those conditions it would have taken a while.

This is crucial. This is ridiculous! Will a horrible accident have to occur before those that own the Gumboro Mudbog get the complete picture?

Thank goodness the drivers are agile and quick thinking enough to get there! Boohoo on the comedy caper guys that go only as fast as the vehicles they ride in. Either put bigger motors in their carts or make their behinds run! Don't leave it to the drivers.........USE SOME RESPONSIBILITY!

'No Drama' For Maryland Winter This Year- NOAA Says

If you hated last winter's record snowstorms in Maryland, you should be a lot happier with the winter weather predictions rolled out Thursday by government and private forecasters.

The best news is that federal forecasters see no compelling reasons to think we'll stray far from the long-term averages for precipitation and temperatures this winter. Snow totals should look more like Baltimore's 18-inch norm than last year's record 77 inches.

On the other hand, forecasters at expect an early start to the cold weather in the Mid-Atlantic states this fall. Later in the winter, said's forecasting operations director, Ken Reeves, "you're going to find yourself with … warm air pushing against cold air in the region." That means more "mixy-type storms instead of colder snowstorms."

He guessed 20 inches to 25 inches in all at Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport. But he said "the bust potential is down rather than up this time," meaning that his estimate is more likely too high than too low.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Climate Prediction Center said the worst of the snow and cold this winter will fall across the northern tier of states, from the Pacific Northwest through the Great Lakes to New England.

Warmer- and drier-than-normal weather is expected across the South, with growing worries about drought conditions developing from Texas to Florida.

The forecast is driven mostly by a strengthening La Nina — a cooling of surface waters in the eastern and central tropical Pacific Ocean.

That has replaced last winter's moderate El Nino, the pattern of above-average sea-surface temperatures that drove winter storms across the southern U.S. and up the East Coast, helping fuel the storms that dropped a staggering 77 inches of snow at BWI.

"In a La Nina, storms track to the west of [the Mid-Atlantic], and history has shown we often do not see a whole lot of snow," said Mike Halpert, deputy director of the Climate Prediction Center. "If I were a betting man, I would be betting against a very snowy winter."

Last winter was 2 degrees lower than the long-term pattern because of sharply colder weather in February. A more nearly "average" winter in the Baltimore region would feel warmer by comparison.
Area consumers could receive a double benefit — milder temperatures and cheaper natural gas. Baltimore Gas and Electric Co. officials said Wednesday that lower natural gas prices this winter should alone save consumers 5 percent on the gas portion of their bills. That works out to about $30 over the five-month heating season.

If's forecast proves correct, the snow we get would come early in the season. Joe Bastardi, its chief long-range forecaster, said he expects temperatures in November and December to be near or below normal.

Reeves said that would come with an expected southward dip in the jet stream, down through the Great Lakes into the Mid-Atlantic.

"If we get that kind of flow going, it probably means access to colder air and a chance for … not Snowmageddon 3, but smaller batches of snow moving from west to east," he said.

If nor'easters do form, he said, they would tend to spin up off the Carolina coast without first sweeping up moisture from the Gulf of Mexico. And until we're deep into December, the odds will favor rain over snow.

Come January, the dip in the jet stream will flatten out, Reeves said. And that will mean milder weather. And when such temperatures collide with colder air to the north, Maryland can expect "wintry mix" storms that can slicken roads and bring down power lines without delivering much snow.

If you'd rather have a snowfest this winter, stick with the 2011 Old Farmer's Almanac. Its seers, using sunspot cycles and a strengthening La Nina as their guide, forecast a "cold, snowy" winter for the Mid-Atlantic, with the flakiest times in early January and mid- and late-February.

How reliable are NOAA's Winter Outlooks? The Climate Prediction Center measures its performance with a statistical tool called the "Heidike Skill Score." Negative scores are worse than random guessing. A score of 100 percent is a perfect forecast.

"Our average skill score is somewhere around 20 to 25 percent better than random chance," said Michelle L'Heureux, an El Nino and La Nina expert at NOAA.

Last year's Winter Outlook, once it was measured against the actual weather, got a score of 15 percent to 20 percent.

"While we did better than random chance, we didn't do as well as one would have hoped," she said. And that was because of a very strong negative Arctic Oscillation, a fast-changing atmospheric factor that contributed the cold air for Maryland's heavy snows. It's "always a wild card in our seasonal outlooks."

"This year's forecast is based on the expectation of a strong La Nina pattern, so as long as we don't see extreme AO values, then we should do reasonably well," L'Heureux said.

Wisconsin Pumpkin Is World's Heaviest

World's heaviest pumpkin but not the most attractive........can't have everything, even in the pumpkin patch.

NEW RICHMOND, Wis. (AP) - Guinness World Records has confirmed that a massive pumpkin grown in Wisconsin is officially the world's heaviest.

The gourd grown this year by Chris Stevens of New Richmond tips the scales at 1,810.5 pounds. That's 85 pounds heavier than the previous record, a 1,725-pound pumpkin grown last year in Ohio.

Stevens' pumpkin has a circumference of 186.5 inches, or more than 15 feet. When turned on its side, the pumpkin is more than waist-high to an average-size person.
Stevens unveiled his pumpkin earlier this month at the Stillwater Harvest Fest in Minnesota. He said at the time his secret is a precise mixture of sunshine, rain, cow manure, fish emulsion and seaweed.

18th Annual 'Between The Waters' Bike Tour


Citizens For a Better Eastern Shore is sponsoring the 18th annual Between the Waters Bike Tour. This year's start/finish will be out of Onancock from the Historic Onancock School, according to the Event's Manager Phyllis S. Tyndall.

Approximately 750-800 riders will be traveling north up Seaside and will be in the areas of Locustville, Accomac, Modesttown, New Church, Saxis and on Bayside Rd. back into Onancock from approximately 7:30 AM until about 5:00 PM on Saturday.

"We are asking our local residents who travel these areas, to be aware that they will be sharing the road with bicycles this weekend," explained Tyndall.

The bikers will cross US Rte. 13 at Melfa, Onley, at the VDOT intersection, Johnson Rd. Intersection and at New Church during the course of the day.

Rabies Vacinations For Your Pet

The Worcester County Health Department and Worcester County Animal Control will hold a clinic to give rabies vaccinations to pets from 6-7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 26, at the Pocomoke City Fire Station, 1410 Market St.

Another clinic, sponsored by the Health Department, Worcester County Animal Control and Ocean City Police Department/Animal Control, will be held from 6-7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 3, at the Ocean City Fire Station, 12925 Coastal Highway.

The cost is $5 per pet for Worcester County residents and $10 per pet for non-Worcester County residents. You will need proof of residency or address is required.

Bring your driver's license, utility bill or previous vaccination certificate showing your name and current address.
Remember: If this is not your pet's first rabies vaccination, bring the previous vaccination certificate so your pet may receive a three-year booster shot. Otherwise, the shot will expire in one year.

Thursday, October 21, 2010


(This is just too funny! This could only be true; you simply can't make this stuff up!) 

Clutching their Kohl's shopping bags, Ellen and Kay woefully gazed down at a dead cat in the mall parking lot.
Obviously a recent flies, no smell.. What business could that poor kitty have had here?' murmured Ellen..'

'Come on, Ellen, let's just go...'

But Ellen had already grabbed her shopping bag and was explaining, 'I'll just put my things in your bag, and then I'll use this tissue....'

She dumped her purchases into Kay's bag and then used the tissue paper to cradle and lower the former feline into her own Kohl's bag and cover it.

They continued the short trek to the car in silence, stashing their goods in the trunk. But it occurred to both of them that if they left Ellen's burial bag in the trunk, warmed by the Texas sunshine while they ate, Kay's Lumina would soon lose that new-car smell.

They decided to leave the bag on top of the trunk, and they headed over to K & W Cafeteria.

They went through the serving line and sat down at a window table. They had a view of Kay's Chevy with the Kohl's bag still on the trunk.

BUT not for long! As they ate, they noticed a big woman in a red gingham shirt stroll by their car.. She looked quickly this way and that, and then took the Kohl's bag without breaking stride. She quickly walked out of their line of vision. Kay and Ellen shot each other a wide-eyed look of amazement.

It all happened so fast that neither of them could think how to respond. 'Can you imagine?' finally sputtered Ellen.. 'The nerve of that woman!' Kay sympathized with Ellen, but inwardly a laugh was building as she thought about the grand surprise awaiting the female thief.

Just when she thought she'd have to giggle into her napkin, she noticed Ellen's eyes freeze in the direction of the serving line. Following her gaze, Kay recognized the big woman in the red gingham shirt with the Kohl's bag hanging from her arm. She was brazenly pushing her tray toward the cashier.

Helplessly they watched the scene unfold:

After leaving the register, the woman settled at a table across from theirs, put the bag on an empty chair and began to eat.

After a few bites of baked whitefish and green beans, she casually lifted the bag into her lap to survey her treasure. Looking from side to side, but not far enough to notice her rapt audience three tables over, she pulled out the tissue paper and peered into the bag.

Her eyes widened, and she began to make a sort of gasping noise. The noise grew. The bag slid from her lap as she sank to the floor, wheezing and clutching her upper chest. The beverage cart attendant quickly recognized a customer in trouble and sent the busboy to call 911, while she administered the Heimlich maneuver.

A crowd quickly gathered that did not include Ellen and Kay, who remained riveted to their chairs for seven whole minutes until the ambulance arrived. In a matter of minutes, the big woman with the red gingham shirt emerged, still gasping, and securely strapped on a gurney.

Two well-trained EMT volunteers steered her to the waiting ambulance, while a third scooped up her belongings. The last they saw of the distressed cat-burglar was as she disappeared behind the ambulance doors................the Kohl's Bag perched on her stomach!!


God does take care of those who do bad things! AND once in a while...He allows us to witness!

Two In The Running For District 1 Seat

POCOMOKE CITY -- Two men whose backgrounds share military service, but little else, are contending to represent District 1, Worcester's southernmost region, as a Worcester County Commissioner.

Merrill Lockfaw Jr., a Republican, won his primary against three other contenders while Jimmy Schoolfield, a Democrat, advanced to the general election unopposed.

The seat represents Pocomoke City and surrounding areas. It is currently held by Bobby Cowger, who did not seek re-election.

Both Lockfaw and Schoolfield have served in the armed forces. Lockfaw spent four years in the Air Force, while Schoolfield spent six years in the Army.

Lockfaw worked for Worcester County government as a road superintendent for 19 years, retiring in June.

"I thought with my business experience as well as working with large budgets and county government would make me a good candidate," said Lockfaw.

Schoolfield has been a minister at Georgetown Baptist Church in Pocomoke for the past 14 years, in addition to being vice president of the NAACP for Worcester County. He resigned his NAACP role when he decided to run for the County Commission seat.

His life path wasn't a smooth one. In the early 1990s, between the ages of 29 and 32, Schoolfield was charged with 12 separate crimes in Maryland courts, including assault, theft and malicious destruction of property.

"A lot of those extended from when I was out in the world drinking," said Schoolfield. "I watched what alcohol and drugs did to me, and that has given me a lot of things I can talk with youth about.

"I can say from experience there are other things we can do besides hanging on the street and drink."

He has not been charged with a crime since 1995, although he does have three active cases in the civil court system, including one in which his wages were ordered to be garnished by $13,622. Schoolfield said he and his wife took out a loan to start a fashion store, before she had to undergo heart surgery. As a result, they closed the store and incurred the debt.

He was also taken to court for a $632 bill owed to Sharp Energy, which he says was an outstanding energy bill for his daughter's house that she was unable to pay.

If elected, Lockfaw says he wants to be able to provide citizens with the services they need, such as police officers and firefighters.

"While protecting ourselves, we can't over-regulate ourselves to the point it would drive businesses away," said Lockfaw.

Schoolfield says he wants to focus on ways to improve the housing situation, build the community and reach out to youth.

"I want to be a force for the lower district," says Schoolfield. "I would like to work with the youth and on education issues. Crime is also an important issue, especially in downtown Pocomoke."

When asked about legislation requiring all homes built after Jan. 1 to contain residential sprinkler systems, both men said they would like to tweak the law as it would apply to Worcester.

Lockfaw says he opposes mandating them, while Schoolfield would be satisfied with an amendment restricting the requirement to homes on a municipal water supply.

Unwanted Publicity For Delinquent Taxpayers Of Accomack County

Delinquent taxpayers may be getting more unwanted publicity if Supervisor Donald Hart's wishes are fulfilled. Hart called to take a page out of a local business owners book regarding those who owe money.

Referring to Doughty's Market in Melfa, Hart wishes that Accomack County would put up a sign on the County property listing the top delinquent taxpayers.

"People see that sign on Route 13," explained Hart "and those names don't stay up there long."

Supervisor Ron Wolff agreed with the idea saying businesses who owed money to the County would lose business if such a policy was adopted and therefore would be leveraged into paying.

County Attorney Mark Taylor did say during the discussion the County had a legal right to place such a sign. A motion was made and passed by the Supervisors to look into such a sign.

Hart also added he wanted County Treasurer Dana Bundick to go after the assets of delinquent taxpayers who owe balances on properties on Cedar Island that are now under water.

"If my house was under moving land and I didn't pay taxes, I would not be allowed to get away with it," argued Hart. "There was sand under their houses when the tax bills were issued and we should go after any assets they have to collect the debt."

Northampton County Court

Korey Dantaye Taylor, 31 of Eastville, was sentenced to 5 years imprisonment with all but 12 months suspended and supervised probation for proposing sex with a child under 15 years of age.

Levar Devon Myrick, 20 of Cheriton, was sentenced to 5 years imprisonment with all time suspended but time served and upon successful completion of a diversion program for grand larceny, obstruction and destruction of property.

Roy Lamont Savage, 27 of Seaford, DE, was sentenced for 2 years imprisonment and supervised probation for possession with intent to distribute cocaine, possession of a firearm while in possession of cocaine and possession of marijuana.

Herbert Burton Lane, 20 of Exmore, was sentenced to 20 years imprisonment with all buy 4 years suspended conditioned on entry into and successful completion of the Youthful Offender Program for robbery and breaking and entering.

Lynette Dainelle Hope-Smith, 46 of Birdsnest, pled guilty to charges of embezzlement.

Barry Kevin Simpson, 47 of Exmore, pled guilty to possession of cocaine.

Protestors Oppose Virginia Immigration Law

Protestors gathered outside of Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli's regional office in Norfolk Monday to voice their disapproval of the McDonnell Administration's recent actions on immigration.

The group protested for about a half an hour before attempting to enter the building to demand a meeting to drop off informational materials on the effects of anti-immigrant laws on the state. The group was unable to get inside the building so they're going to mail a letter voicing their opposition instead.

Last week, Governor McDonnell set forth to put into place the 287g program throughout the entire state of Virginia. The new law would give state troopers the authority to check people's immigration status when stopped for any reason.

Those organizing the protest, a statewide grassroots organization called Virginia Organizing , say McDonnell and Cuccinelli are "out of touch and reckless on the immigration issue."

Protestors are using this opportunity to encourage the McDonnell Administration to ask Congress to pass Comprehensive Immigration Reform instead of attempting to pass anti-immigrant legislation that will infringe on Virginian's rights.

One of the group's organizers told tax dollars are better spent on other issues than deputizing police officers.

Dave Gorak, with the Midwest Coalition to Reduce Immigration, disagrees with the protesters. He told, "Our immigration laws were created for the main purpose of protecting American workers. The Bureau of Labor Statistics says 21 million citizens and legal residents, many of them with no more than a high school education, are unable to find full-time jobs." Gorak continued, "Does Virginia Organizing think it fair that, according to the Pew Hispanic Center, the 7 million illegal aliens working in the construction, manufacturing, transportation and the service and hospitality industries be permitted to keep their jobs? If the Obama administration is serious when it says jobs for Americans are a "top priority," why hasn't he ordered their removal from our workforce?"

Parksley Vol. Fire Dept. Has Halloween Dance


Parksley Volunteer Fire Company
Saturday October 23, 2010

9:00 PM

$15.00 per couple or $10.00 stag


Music by: Nuthin' Fancy

Constume Contest
$300 first prize
$200 second prize
$100 third prize

For more information call: 757-665-6977
The last house on Holland Island, a once-thriving fishing community, has fallen, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation says.

Photos from the organization show the delapidated house crumpled amid the bay waters, chimneys gone and sides collapsed. Water reached to the second floor of the house.

The foundation says strong winds over the weekend brought down the house on the lower Eastern Shore island north of Crisfield.

The last time I saw the house, it was perched on kind of a brick pier, and water was washing underneath," said Donald Baugh, the bay foundation's vice president for education. "We knew its time was coming." Reportedly settled in the late 17th century, the island was once five miles long. It was home to a fishing community of 250 to 360 people, with more than 60 homes, a church and other buildings. But erosion forced the residents to leave — with the last fleeing in 1922 — and for decades now only one abandoned home has remained, increasingly threatened by the bay.

A minister and former waterman, Stephen L. White, bought the island in the 1990s and attempted to preserve it from further erosion. But wind and waves from Tropical Storm Isabel in 2003 severely damaged the house and undercut the sand beneath it.

"It's really heartbreaking," said Tom White, 50, Stephen White's son. "He gave it his best shot."

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Local Campaign Rhetoric Moves from Nasty to Libelous

Maybe I’ve missed it up to now.  Perhaps I just wanted to ignore this foolishness until after the election.  Sadly, when you come across a LIE that is so blatant you just have to respond.
What am I talking about?  This headline from local blogger Jonathan Taylor:
McDermott To Stand Trial December 7th
Taylor claims that District 38-B candidate Mike McDermott “will have to answer for the "handgun" incident he is hoping everyone has forgotten.”

Unlike Taylor, I did a little checking.  McDermott has been neither charged with a crime nor indicted.  He won’t be standing trial for anything on December 7th.  Hopefully, if the voters of 38-B see fit, both he and Marty Pusey will be preparing for the trial of serving in the Maryland House of Delegates.

Taylor falls flat in the credibility game, so I’m not particularly concerned with his libelous ways tarnishing a good man like Mike McDermott.  Unfortunately, in addition to pimping for poor candidates like Worcester County State’s Attorney Joel Todd, he has also been hawking the candidacies of a few first rate folk, like Pusey and Wicomico State’s Attorney candidate Matt Maciarello.  I wouldn’t want Taylor’s lying ways to diminish the reputations of two such sterling individuals.

In anticipation of a venomous (and typically illiterate) reply, the onus is not on me (or anyone else) to prove a negative.  Any remarks regarding “attacks” on a certain former Maryland House candidate will be answered with a repeat of the candidate’s own writings.  I can’t help it if certain candidates insist on making foolish statements – in writing.

It didn’t take long.  Taylor has now “re-worded” his post to state that McDermott is scheduled for a “Disciplinary Hearing” on December 7th.  Is this true?  I couldn’t say.  The only thing I do know is that McDermott had not been notified of any such hearing as of 9PM Wednesday night (when I spoke with him).

Should we be surprised?  Of course not!  Harken back to early August.  In what was an obviously political act, McDermott was placed on suspension by Sheriff Chuck Martin.  In that post, we noted that rumors emanating from Snow Hill about the action were circulating at least a full day before McDermott was even notified.
It’s not the usual occurrence when I agree with the Daily Times on political matters.  However, on this matter we were in agreement.  This whole affair smelled then of political retribution.  I maintain that this current matter is nothing more than a ham-handed attempt at an October surprise.
As Parker noted in her op-ed:
… the bottom line is this: McDermott’s reputation before the electorate might be damaged by a sheriff whose twin interests — running a smooth police department and helping his political allies get elected — are in conflict.
As we noted Wednesday:
If McDermott is returned to duty (per the review board), the matter dropped or a formal complaint filed, and promptly investigated (if a formal complaint is filed), then the entire affair could simply be chocked up to a misunderstanding.  Each day that this affair continues without an objective conclusion in sight makes the matter appear more and more sordid.  This does not bode well for either Conway’s candidacy or the last few months of Sheriff Martin’s distinguished career.
Given the probable route of this “news”:  Martin to Worcester State’s Attorney Joel Todd to Taylor, and the low credibility of the whole crew, the voters District 38-B shouldn’t be too concerned about the man they are about to elect as one of their Delegates.

Unfortunately, the lack of a swift, independent investigation into charges that appear to be baseless is ending Sheriff Martin’s career on a bitter note.  Is attempting to protect his pal, incumbent delegate Norm Conway, worth it?  Using Taylor as their drum beater only makes Martin, Todd, and Conway look more petty, and pathetic, than they seem to be.

from Delmarva Dealings

Local Campaign Rhetoric Moves from Nasty to Libelous


This Weekend At the MarVa Theater

Friday, Oct 22nd Sat, Oct 23rd
Time: 7 p.m.
Tickets: $5


Starring Kristen Bell, Jamie Lee Curtis, Sigourney Weaver, Odette Yustman, Kristin Chenoweth and Betty White, YOU AGAIN is an outrageous comedy about a successful PR pro who discovers that her brother is marrying her high school arch nemesis.
Rated PG-13

Northampton County Court

Northampton County Commonwealth's Attorney Bruce Jones reports that on Monday, October 18, the following cases were heard in Northampton County's Circuit Court:

William Marcel Custis, 26 of Onancock, had probation revoked on the original charges of stealing a firearm. Custis will serve out an 18 month prison sentence that was suspended.

Christopher J. Barcroft, 21 of Nassawadox, had probation revoked on the original charges of stealing a firearm. Barcroft will serve the 5 year prison sentence that was suspended.

Milton Darnell Faison, who was arrested in connection with 3 robberies, was sentenced to 55 years imprisonment for robberies at Rene's Exxon, La Hacienda and B&B Market. He was convicted of breaking and entering while armed with a deadly weapon, robbery, use of a sawed off shotgun and use of a firearm during the commission of a robbery.

Davon Lamar Davis, 21 of Painter, was sentenced to 30 years imprisonment with all suspended but 4 years conditioned on entry into and successful completion of the Youthful Offender Program. Davis was convicted of 2 counts of robbery, use of a sawed-off shotgun and breaking and entering while armed with a deadly weapon.

Sherri Parks, 33 of Willis Wharf, was sentenced to 5 years imprisonment with all suspended but time served for breaking and entering, grand larceny and petit larceny.

Ashley Nicole Cummings, 20 of Painter, was sentenced to 3 years imprisonment suspended but time served and restitution for breaking and entering, grand larceny and petit larceny.

County Laptop Stolen- County Employee Responsible Resigns

ACCOMAC -- Accomack residents who may have had personal information compromised when a government-owned laptop computer was stolen Oct. 7 should receive official notice from the county this week.

"The notice is being provided by Accomack County as quickly as possible following the theft, given the totality of the circumstances," said county attorney Mark Taylor in an e-mail.

County Administrator Steve Miner said as many as 35,000 names and Social Security numbers, and some resident addresses, were on a computer stolen from a Las Vegas hotel room.

The computer had been taken there by county employee Joshua Taylor on a personal vacation; Miner said it was taken there without permission.

The letter states that the county has no proof that the recipient's personal information has been accessed "by any unauthorized person." It asks recipients to review account statements and monitor credit reports by providing websites and phone numbers.

It asks recipients to call the county office if they feel personal information has been accessed or misused.

It also suggests a change in how county computers are used "by ensuring that no other computers are permitted to leave county facilities containing such data."

Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department spokesman Marcus Martin said Taylor reported missing a Dell laptop valued at $1,300 and a backpack.

Taylor resigned shortly after 1 p.m. Tuesday, according to a news release issued by the county.

The theft took place at the Mandalay Bay Hotel Casino. He said there are two periods of time in which the electronically monitored room lock wasn't fully latched.

"Who did that is still up for the detective to determine," Martin said. "Was it a maid? Was it engineered? Was it the visitor's carelessness? We can't say."

While the county waited seven days before notifying the media of the computer's theft, Miner said last week that the county had to determine what exactly was on the laptop.

"Any suggestion that Accomack County has 'waited' to take action is simply wrong," said Mark Taylor, county attorney. "Responding to this computer theft has been the county staff's top priority since the theft was reported."

Wife Of Justice Clarence Thomas Leaves Voice Message For Husband's Accuser

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas was narrowly appointed to the bench almost 19 years ago to the day after a notoriously bitter confirmation process in which he was accused, but never found guilty, of sexual harassment by a former colleague named Anita Hill. His wife, Virginia Thomas, has never quite gotten past that ugly episode, it seems.

Just this weekend, she reportedly left a voice mail on Hill's answering machine to the following effect, according to an ABC News investigative report:

"Good morning, Anita Hill, it's Ginny Thomas," said the voice, "I just wanted to reach across the airwaves and the years and ask you to consider something. I would love you to consider an apology sometime and some full explanation of why you did what you did with my husband. So give it some thought and certainly pray about this and come to understand why you did what you did. Okay have a good day."

Hill, who is now a professor at Brandeis University in Massachusetts, said she "initially thought" the message was a "prank," but went ahead and forwarded it to campus police, who passed it along to the FBI, The New York Times reports.
When contacted by reporters, Virginia Thomas responded: "I did place a call to Ms. Hill at her office extending an olive branch to her after all these years, in hopes that we could ultimately get past what happened so long ago." When told of the response, Hill said that she would not apologize since she had testified to the truth of her experience so many years ago.

In the confirmation hearings, Hill told the Senate that back when Thomas was her boss at the Department of Education, she repeatedly declined his invitations for the two of them to go out socially before he began "to use work situations to discuss sex" of a graphic and sadistic nature in vivid detail. At the time of the alleged harassment, Thomas was married to another woman, Kathy Ambush, whom he later divorced.

Thomas steadfastly denied all of Hill's accusations and countered that she was just a minor part of the larger plot against him, which he characterized as a "high-tech lynching for uppity blacks," though it's worth noting that Hill herself is African-American.

Hill's testimony was a political bombshell in what had already been a fairly contentious confirmation process: Even before her words went public, many black-activist and liberal groups opposed Thomas, a noted conservative-leaning judge and the second black nominee in U.S. history. After she spoke, a number of women's groups, including congresswomen, also joined their voices in opposition. Still, Thomas ended up getting appointed by a slim majority vote, 52-48.
For her part, the second Mrs. Thomas, nee Lamp, has also courted controversy of her own: Last year, she launched Liberty Central Inc., a nonprofit tea party activist group that opposes President Barack Obama's "hard-left agenda," a move that many liberals denounce as a clear conflict of interest when it comes to her husband's role as a Supreme Court justice (though it is technically legal).

She gave no indication to reporters why she was "reaching out" to Hill on this occasion, after so much time.

A New "Eyeball" For the Science Museum

The Science Museum of Virginia is getting its eyeball back.

Eighteen days after thieves stole an eyeball cover that sheathed the museum’s Grand Kugel, a replacement eyeball is set to be unveiled Wednesday at noon.

“When our eyeball was stolen a few weeks ago, there was so much community support that we had to replace it,” Richard Conti, the museum’s director, said in a statement.

The eyeball’s vendor replaced the cover at a “considerably reduced price,” Conti said, because “of all the incredible news coverage around the world.” The original cover cost $4,000.

During the early morning hours of Oct. 2, thieves cut away the eyeball that tightly wrapped the 8½ foot diameter, 29-ton ball. The decoration had been installed just 12 hours earlier to promote a new exhibit — “Goose Bumps! The Science of Fear” — at the museum.

The thieves have yet to be caught and the eyeball remains missing. Virginia’s Capitol Police, who have jurisdiction over the Science Museum Property, continue to investigate.

To celebrate the replacement eye, the museum staff “is asking for eye-deas on how to keep an eye on our eye,” Conti said. Suggestions can be posted on the Science Museum of Virginia’s Facebook page.

All ideas will be entered into a random drawing for an “eye-pod” and a free family museum membership, Conti said. The winner will be announced at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday.

FirstGiving - Baltimore Animal Rescue and Care Shelter Inc - Sprout and Pickles Page

Fundraising Page Image

Hello Everyone.....
As an animal lover and owner I am raising money during a fundraiser for BARCS (Baltimore Animal Rescue And Care Shelter). I volunteer my time as often as I can at this shelter and since I have known about BARCS I have become the owner of the best pets ever! Animals that live at BARCS are animals that the city has cast out for one reason or another.

A few months ago I fostered a dog whose family had to give him up due to job loss and could no longer care for him. He came to me a very sad dog and missed his previous owners so much and the small children that once played with him. He wasn't the prettiest dog in the world and had some severe skin issues. I took him in, changed his food, treated his skin and changed him back into a happy dog. A few weeks ago he was adopted and the last I heard he was going camping on the weekends and going to work daily with his new owner.

Currently I have a cat named Billy Ripkin. Billy came from BARCS and every day he sees me off to work and is waiting on the sidewalk when I return home. He walks too, beside me, when I walk the dog.

Pickles is the a cat that no one wanted because his fur looked as if he had gone through shock. Today as a grown and has beautiful long fur with a fluffy tail.

Then there is Sprout, the silly dog, that I have had for over a year. She had not been given the love puppies need nor discipline and was mildly abused This year she has attended obedience school and I am now able to schedule "doggy play dates".

All these animals came from BARCS and otherwise would have gone to a shelter that would have put them to sleep after a waiting period.

BARCS needs your donations so they can continue to take care of the animals that have fallen upon hard times. All of the wonderful people that care for these unfortunate animals are volunteers, including myself, that understand that even animals need out constant care and love.

And that's what Sprout, Billy Ripken, Pickles and I are trying to do.

You will find the link below that will take you the BARCS donation site. You don't have to give alot. The smallest amount will be so appreciated. My fundraiser goal has not been met yet and I did not set it high because I know these are hard times for most of us.

If I meet my fundraising target Sprout will get to parade around in his Shark costume and Pickles dressed as a Pumpkin for Halloween.

I thank you from the bottom of my heart for you kind donation and all the animals at BARCS thank you too.

Deborah Northam

FirstGiving - Baltimore Animal Rescue and Care Shelter Inc - Sprout and Pickles Page
Donating through this website is simple, fast and totally secure. It is also the most efficient way to support my fundraising efforts.

Many thanks for your support -- and don't forget to forward this to anyone who you think might want to donate too!

If you have any questions please feel free to email jmmb.
And if you are a frequent reader of this site you have seen some of my pets.

Hampton Man Gets Life Sentence And Rambles On For 100 Minutes

HAMPTON — Just before defendants are about to be sentenced, the judge asks them if they want to say anything.

Most times, defendants opt to say nothing. But sometimes, what follows is perhaps a brief plea for mercy, an apology to the family, or an assertion of innocence.

But John Anya-Onwuka — being sentenced in Hampton Circuit Court Monday for murder in the slaying of his ex-wife — rambled for more than an hour and a half. The hand-written statement began with being in his mother's womb.

A court reporter had difficulty transcribing Anya-Onwuka's words, due to his low tone and thick Nigerian accent. Judge Wilford Taylor Jr. even took a short recess to "stretch."

But after the statement — which lasted from about 4:20 p.m. to just before 6 p.m. — Taylor sentenced Anya-Onwuka, 50, to life in prison in the murder, plus three years for using a knife in a felony in the slashing death of his ex-wife, Gloria Anya-Onwuka, in 2006. The couple was divorced, but lived together in the upscale Farmington subdivision.

"It's the first time I had a defendant give his entire life story at that point in the case," said Anya-Onwuka's court-appointed lawyer, Stephen J. Weisbrod. Then again, he was also the first client who ever pleaded guilty to first-degree murder without a plea agreement.

Deputy Commonwealth's Attorney Anton Bell twice objected to the statement while Anya-Onwuka was reading it. But Taylor declined to stop him.

The Daily Press reporter could not hear much of the statement, but Bell said the gist was: "Everybody was bad, and he was a saint." Bell said Anya-Onwuka never apologized to his ex-wife's family, including her mother who traveled from Nigeria for the hearing.

Weisbrod said he apologized "in a roundabout way."

During Monday's testimony, the victim's brother, Emeka Renner, glared at Anya-Onwuka in court, saying: "I want to know why you did what you did. That was a defenseless woman."

Weisbrod said the statement tends to show Anya-Onwuka is mentally ill. Taylor denied Weisbrod's motion before the sentencing to have Anya-Onwuka evaluated for a third time.