Cheers and jeers

CHEERS – To the gift of life. On Sunday, we published the story of Johnstown resident and teacher Bonnie Miller, who received the gift of a new heart during the holiday season. If you missed this story in the hecticness that can engulf us during that time of the year, we encourage you to dig that edition of the paper out of the pile or go online and read it. What an incredible woman, husband, family and local community. When you finish reading, think about what you will do with the heartbeats you have been given for this day.

JEERS – To starting out on the wrong foot. Gloversville’s organizational meeting was not routine; it included tension and controversy. Some of it surrounded an issue brought up by 6th Ward Councilman Wrandy Siarkowski’s reading of a statement expressing concern and displeasure upon hearing “from the outside” that 16-year zoning board member Karen Smith was not going to be reappointed by the mayor. There is a history between Smith, president of the Gloversville Republican Committee, and Mayor Dayton King, and in the political world, it should come as no big surprise he would not consider her for this reappointment. Yet, this could have been averted by simple communication. Going into his second term, Mayor King more than once said he would work harder and smarter toward open communication. Perhaps if he had let all, or even some, members of the council know about his intentions, it would have taken away the element of surprise or the appearance of orchestration. Similarly, council members could have made a quick call to the mayor before the meeting. The mayor has the right to appoint whoever he believes is qualified; it is the right of the council to approve or not. George Bernard Shaw once said, “The single biggest problem with communication is the illusion that it had taken place.” We encourage Gloversville leaders to take away the illusion and make it a reality.

JEERS – To Hercules. No, not to the mythical Greek hero, but to winter storm Hercules and the need to now name winter storms. The Weather Channel began naming what it claimed would be noteworthy 2012-13 winter storms. The reason given: “Our goal is to better communicate the threat and the timing of the significant impacts that accompany these events. The fact is, a storm with a name is easier to follow, which will mean fewer surprises and more preparation.” Really? Before the need to name a winter storm, if a Nor’easter was headed our way with a foot of snow and high winds, was it ignored? Not at all, and the response was the same: Bread and milk were cleared from the shelves while shovels and salt sales soared. Is this a petty jeer? Yes, and now we will wait for the forecast of Ivan The Terrible.