07.01.08

What makes a pond great? How does a pond earn such a coveted superlative? How does one recognize greatness? An oyster, an oystercatcher, and an oysterman would probably all agree on the greatness of a particular pond, and I think we all know “great” when we see it. An expanse of blue water teeming with fish and fowl certainly qualifies, while the algae-covered tarn across from the 7-11 in my hometown is clearly a little sketchy. But how does one separate great from pretty good?

By Jim Miller

07.01.08

Back in the seventeenth century, long before the advent of student loans and their attendant FAFSA forms, you could pay your Harvard tuition in wampum. In fact, you could pay your taxes to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in beads as well. So what was to prevent someone from going down to the beach with a burlap sack and amassing a fortune? As Don Widdiss, Chilmark resident and wampum artisan, says, “If anyone saw how much work I put into creating a bracelet, they’d think I was crazy.”

By Geoff Currier

07.01.08

It’s the kind of thing you would never expect to happen twice. One day in September, after Labor Day, my friend Jules and I went for a little R and R at South Beach. At lunchtime, Jules pulled out a perfectly constructed Italian hoagy. Having just taken a second delicious bite, out of the blue – or rather, over his left shoulder – a seagull swooped in and grabbed Jules’s sandwich. You would think this a once in a lifetime event, no? Well, actually, no. It happened again in the spring.

By Carolyn O'Daly

07.01.08

On an Island full of coincidences and interesting interplay, brothers Wesley and Garrett Brown are a prime example of both. Raised in a Methodist clergy family, the preacher’s kids have each traveled separate circuitous routes to end up doing what may seem like the same thing: playing the organ at either end of Kennebec Avenue in Oak Bluffs each summer.

By Mary-Jean Miner

07.01.08

We’ve had house guests leave everything from a bottle of wine to a box of designer chocolates to a card as a thank-you. I’ve been fine with all of these.

By Kate Feiffer

07.01.08

Scully didn’t like to chase cars. He preferred to get out front and lead them like a dog-track hare, ears pinned back, jowls flapping, legs pumping like pistons in an old flathead Ford. He was a big dog but he could motor.

By Geoff Currier

07.01.08

I don’t remember my first time on a boat; it seems as if it’s been forever. I also don’t recall learning to sail; it seems so natural to roll with the waves. I never consciously think about boats being beautiful; I just know it.

By Louisa Gould

05.01.08

I do not ask for much in life (and friends of mine say that sometimes it shows), but this springtime I do ask why the Vineyard staged Jaws Fest, the all-Island hullabaloo over the thirtieth anniversary of the release of Jaws three summers ago, but – at press time anyway – shows no sign whatsoever that it’s going to hold a Jaws 2 Fest to honor the 1978 release of the first of the three sequels to follow it.

By Tom Dunlop

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