Forum, Nov. 14: Thanks, Lebanon Coaches

Monday, November 13, 2017
Thanks, Coaches of my Youth

This is a belated message to Lebanon coaches: Thank you! As a full-time teacher, part-time coach and occasional volunteer, I know what it means to give your time and energy. I know about opportunity costs and sunk costs, wasted time and I-should-have-dones. I know what it means to deal with obnoxious kids and ungrateful parents, and the know-it-alls and finger-pointers and you-should-have-dones. I remember what it felt like to be an ungrateful, obnoxious kid. So thank you.

 I love sports.  I love the excitement that builds before a game, even a rec league game no one’s watching and no one cares about. I love huddling up, cheering, running onto the field. I love supporting (or, sometimes, making fun of) my teammates when they mess up and high-fiving them when they do something awesome. I love chasing balls and Frisbees: running, pumping, trying and not even thinking if I can actually get there.

You, dear coaches of Lebanon, from the schools to the old CCB, grew that. Despite any flaws, you are wonderful people and have done wonderful things. You gave me a space to play and people to play with. The best of you gave it with the right mix of competitiveness, mentoring, nurturing and joy; but you all gave it. I love sports more because of you.

We recently had a “Dress Like an Athlete Day” at my school.  I didn’t wear pro gear or a local Frisbee jerseys. I was really excited to wear my Lebanon soccer warmups, my Lebanon hockey jersey and my LJHS basketball shirt. Those clothes warmed me. So thank you.

And, P.S., thank you refs, too. I did that once and yeah, thanks.

Corey Nunlist

Olympia, Wash.

Prayer Is the Answer

I felt an instant need to reply to Dena Romero’s excellent letter (“Go Beyond Thoughts and Prayers,” Nov. 10). We currently have more than enough gun laws on the books, and instituting more will have no effect on further gun violence, which is indeed sad. She commented about prayer, as well.

Her letter inspired me to write this, for prayer is exactly what we need more of. More specifically, this nation as a whole needs to get God involved a lot more than he is. For way too many years, this nation has gotten deeper into the social behavior pattern of “if it feels good, do it,” no matter what the moral consequences are. This is where this nation is now, and what we really need is a nationwide teaching of a return to God’s way, and away from Satan’s way. These mass shootings are provoked by Satan — period. Anyone who disbelieves this is not in touch with reality.

No, we don’t need more gun laws followed, we need more of God’s laws followed. All this behavior is prophesied in the Bible, in Revelation, and it will come down exactly as God has predetermined, before the Rapture.

W. B. Fisk Sr.

Post Mills

Newbury Town Forest a Good Deal

At a special Town Meeting Nov. 28, Newbury voters will decide whether to create a Newbury town forest on Tucker Mountain. In late September, voters supported the proposal by a solid 135 to 83 majority. Yet questions of cost and management remain.

The direct cost to the town of purchasing the 635 acres is $25,000. The town’s share is supplemented by grants, contributions and pledges from other parties, currently totaling $365,000. Every “Newbury dollar” will generate more than $18 from other donors, public and private. The town is working closely with the Vermont Land Trust, whose expertise in land conservation and management is widely respected.

In an effort to keep costs down, the Interim Management Committee is recommending that the costs of managing the area remain within the levels of funds raised specifically for that purpose. This would leave the town’s operating budget largely unaffected. Expenditures on the forest would be limited by actual income from or for the forest — for example, from logging and maple syrup concessions or the sale of other town lands — which would offset the loss in tax revenues when the property is taken off the tax rolls. This “pay as you go” approach would allow the town to have its cake and eat it, too. The forest is a bargain!

But why a forest at all? The major forces are recreational, educational and economic. Balancing various interests, the town would devise ground rules for access to and use of the area. All categories of users — from hikers and cross-country skiers to four-wheel-drive trucks — would be required to conduct themselves in ways that respect the beauty and long-term ecological health of the area. Having the town assert its interest in this land also limits the possibility that it could be sold to a private party that could prohibit all forms of public access.

I urge Newbury voters to vote yes on Nov. 28.

Larry Minear

West Newbury