As promised, it’s all about humans interacting with other humans at the top of this week’s column. And what says humanity more clearly than a parade? Especially the annual St. Patrick’s Day parade in Westhampton Beach, which this year steps off at noon on Saturday, March 9.
Depending on how you count, from 1968 or ’69, this year’s parade is either the 50th or 51st; the parade website, whbstpats.com, offers little clarification with the statistic that there have been 52 Grand Marshals to date. This year’s Grand Marshal will be Aram Terchunian, chosen through a time honored protocol established by the parade committee and all the surviving past Grand Marshals. In honor of his late wife—the beloved art teacher Lise Frielinghaus, whose license plate read ARTDAWG—Aram has decided on a theme for this year’s parade of “Dawg Days of Summer.”
As always, the parade will start in front of the WHB Elementary School on Mill Road, proceed down to Main Street and then swing west to end at the reviewing stand near Sunset Avenue. Remember to wear some green, and dress warmly. Although the forecast is more promising than some of the more brutal weather conditions of past years, the high is still only expected to be 40 F. Éirinn (and Aram … and the Coneheads) go Brách!
Fire Department Volunteers Race to the Rescue after Accident
Thanks to a report from Fire Chief Chris Osborne, At Quaquanantuck has learned that on Sunday, February 24, at 5:30 a.m. (before first light) the Quogue Fire Department responded to what is known formally as a “motor vehicle accident with entrapment.”
First arriving chiefs, Chief Osborne wrote, observed a single vehicle that had collided with a large oak tree on Montauk Highway across from the old White Horse antiques. The vehicle had spun back into the middle of Montauk Highway, with a passenger in the front seat in need of extrication. Battery operated Hurst Heavy Rescue Tools were employed (using several different methods) to safely remove the passenger door at the site of impact.
Westhampton War Memorial Ambulance personnel transported the passenger to a local hospital. As Chief Osborne pointed out: “Our firefighters respond 24/7/365, and not just to fire calls. That’s why we like to use the term ‘fire rescue.’”
Theatrical Scavenger Hunt Returns to Wildlife Refuge
The immersive, theatrical, scavenger hunt known as “Zima!” (titled after the Polish word for “winter”) returns to the Quogue Wildlife Refuge on Sunday, March 10, at 1 p.m. The imaginative and inventive hunt is an interactive winter journey combining mystery, poetry, theater and exploration created by the Neo-Political Cowgirls.
Founded in 2007 by Kate Mueth, the not-for-profit Neo-Political Cowgirls dance theater company is dedicated to exploring and celebrating the female voice. Held outdoors against the beautiful natural backdrop of the Quogue Wildlife Refuge, “Zima!” asks audience members to seek out the wild characters hidden on the path in search of clues to solve a riddle of mysterious origin.
Participants will set off between 1 and 2 p.m. in search of the hidden scenes in the forest; the goal is to stop, watch, listen and try to solve the riddle. Warm drinks and cookies will be served in the Nature Center after the adventure. Adults 18 and older, $25; kids, $15. Proceeds are shared between the Neo-Political Cowgirls and QWR.
A Natural Pairing: French Cooking and “Sin in the Big Easy” at Firehouse
On Thursday, March 14, at 6 p.m. at the Firehouse, everyone’s invited to hear a story of booze, lies, and mystery and then enjoy fine French cuisine, all in one evening.
The fun begins with writer Elizabeth McCourt shares some excerpts from her book, “Sin in the Big Easy,” a family drama that navigates the sordid underworld of New Orleans. Whet your appetite for mystery—with the question of why girls keep showing up dead in Louis Armstrong Park—and take advantage of the opportunity to meet the author.
After the reading and some Q&A, cheffe Colette will prepare some French cuisine in the Parisian style for all to enjoy. Books will be available for purchase. Cost of the dinner is $15 per person; register as soon as possible by calling 631-653-4224.
Next Installment of Library’s “Green” Storytime Saturday at Midland Avenue
The next family “Green” storytime sponsored by the Quogue Library will be “Florette: A Story about a Little Gardener,” offered at the Midland Avenue library outpost on Saturday, March 9, at 1 p.m.
When Mae’s family moves to a new home, she wishes she could bring her garden with her. But there’s no room for a garden in the city. Or is there? Everyone will receive a little plant to take home and care for. Register by calling the library at 631-653-4224.
Quogue Gallery Taking Work of Nine Artists to Art on Paper Fair
As this column is posted, Quogue Gallery has returned to the New York Art on Paper fair, running from Thursday, March 7, through Sunday, March 10, at Pier 36 located at 299 South Street in lower Manhattan.
The gallery will be featuring the figurative and abstract expressionist work of Sally King Benedict, Harry Bertschmann, Paige Kalena Follman, Raymond Hendler, Fay Lansner, Vincent Pepi, George Read, Joan Thorne, and Melinda Zox. For information, visit quoguegallery.com/news.
Cuisine of Singapore This Week at Inn Spot on the Bay
At the Inn Spot on the Bay, cheffes Colette and Pam will be preparing a menu of dishes from Singapore for Friday and Saturday evening. Visit www.theinnspot.com/internationaldiningseries to find out more.
Artificially Intelligent or Authentically Uninformed?
Several readers very kindly offered sympathy and support after reading At Quaquanantuck’s tale of woe last week, in which it was revealed that the Siri in my smartphone is either incapable of learning or changing behavior, or just plain willful.
The lovely and insightful Carol Carroll not only commiserated, but also shared a theory she worked out about the Southern background of Siri’s coder, suggesting that Siri was adopting the Southern strategy of “killing with kindness” when she, er, I mean it, attempted to flatter me by saying “you’re so chill.” Thanks, Carol. I’m going to try to give Siri the benefit of the doubt.
Especially because the last time I pressed the button and said, “Thank you, Siri,” it came up with a response I hadn’t heard before: “Sure thing.”
Meanwhile, as the ripples of A.I. coverage in national forums and media outlets gather into a tidal wave, At Quaquanantuck would like to recommend a few recent items that might help readers become better informed. First, a New York Times piece by Cade Metz headlined: “Is Ethical A.I. Even Possible?” Another NY Times piece in coverage of the New Work Summit, by Talya Minsberg, has this compelling headline: “Read This. Then Put Away Your Phone.”
We can leave the topic this week with this very sobering excerpt from the Minsberg piece, quoting from a slide show prepared by Tristan Harris, a former Google employee who is now at the Center for Humane Technology:
“‘Never before in history have the decisions of a handful of designers (mostly men, white, living in SF, aged 25-35) working at 3 companies (Google, Apple, Facebook) had so much impact on how millions of people around the world spend their attention,’ the slide show read.
“‘Think about that for a second,’ he wrote. ‘We should feel an enormous responsibility to get this right.’
“Seven years later, worries about the addictive nature of technology have multiplied.”
Meg Carbone Remembered
Our village lost a much loved teacher, mother and friend this week with the passing of Meg Carbone, whose funeral was held on Wednesday, March 6. Along with extending condolences to the Carbone family and all of Meg’s many friends, At Quaquanantuck would like to share here a beautiful remembrance written by her son, Bradley:
“Meg Carbone, an educator, an example, and an inspiration, passed away at Long Island Jewish Hospital on Friday morning, March 1st, from complications surrounding her longtime battle with CLL, a type of leukemia. She was 63. Her relationship with the disease over recent years placed her in intensive care several times, and while these bouts weakened her, they also prepared her. Meg drew on inner light and spent her periods of good health communicating her feelings and intentions, and celebrating the accomplishments of her family and extended network of friends.
“Meg’s light came from a purity of spirit, an inherently good energy, that she used as a starting point in daily life throughout her years. Whether teaching the young children that she loved, directing summer camps, working as a professional ski instructor, or as a wife and mother, she started from a place of honesty and intention, and made her world from there.
“Together with her husband Tim, she built a life within means that they balanced to maximize time as a united pair, and later as a cohesive family unit. As school teachers, Meg and Tim lived by a schedule that allowed them to split time between Quogue, New York, where they met, and Okemo, Vermont, where they spent weekends. In addition to her husband, she is survived by her two sons Kurt and Bradley, whom Meg and Tim raised in this seasonal lifestyle, at the beach in the Hamptons during the summer, and outdoors on the snow in the winter.
“Meg loved her family, and understood the importance of communicating this love. She learned openness growing up with three brothers in Yonkers, New York, and through her extended network of cousins. Always open to welcoming new people into her light, she added to this family throughout her life as she shared her love with friends, with families that she taught in school and on the slopes, and with the families and friends of her sons.
“She had a passion for aesthetics. In her youth Meg channeled energy into an arts education and worked in advertising graphic design. Over time, this energy evolved into an attention to detail that she used to construct her personal style, her approach to work, the organization of her home, and her decorative celebration of the seasons and holidays. She loved the creativity and stimulus that came from attending shows, traveling, and being with new people. Meg was an accomplished home cook, and carried her aesthetic sensibility into the preparation of simple, wonderful meals that ranged in size to serve from 2 to 20.
“Meg was proud of Tim, and promoted him as an example of hard work, honesty, and integrity. Together, they taught these values to their sons and community. Kurt and Bradley, as all of us, will carry this legacy forward in interpretation of her spirit.
“Meg, you are missed. Rest in peace.”
Donations can be made in Meg’s name to The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research — https://support.northwell.edu/donate-feinstein—and all are welcome to contact the family at firstname.lastname@example.org.
At Quaquanantuck encourages readers to send in news and notes and photos of interest to Quogue residents, even if the items are being sent from winter addresses or other parts of the country. Friends and family who enjoy all things Quogue are encouraged to email AtQuaq@gmail.com and ask to be put on the mailing list.