Slapping Myself Silly!

anne mikolay 2012 120Summer is winding down. I can’t say I’m sorry to see it go. It hasn’t been a very good season for me. I didn’t visit half the places I intended to, nor did I accomplish much of anything meaningful this summer. In fact, I spent quite a lot of time slapping myself silly. Why? Because apparently the word has spread among the insect population that this Irish gal offers an all-you-can-eat buffet. Despite my sizable backyard, mosquitoes have an annoying ability of zeroing in on me, and they always have.

When I was a little girl, mosquitoes feasted on me. I recall waking up more than once with bitten, swollen lips so large I looked as though I had received an overdose of Botox. It was painful, unsightly, and scary. For a time, I was so afraid to go to bed at night that my father hung a preventative No-Pest strip from my bedroom ceiling. It didn’t work. I remained dinner for mosquitoes. My mother had a variety of home remedies for itchy bug bites and suggested applying a mixture of salt and baking soda or squeezing vitamin E oil from a vitamin capsule onto the itchy spot. Both worked – for about ten minutes. For me, the only real cure for itchy insect bites is calamine lotion, so I go about my daily errands with pink-streaked legs. Hey, if the younger generation can dye their hair purple and blue, a middle aged lady like myself can walk around with pink-striped skin!

So why do those nasty gallnippers find me so tasty? According to Scienceline.org, I possess the ingredients that comprise an attractive mosquito meal. Mosquitoes are drawn to people who emit large amounts of carbon dioxide (yes, I’ve been told I’m full of hot air) and have a warm body temperature (no, I’ve never been told I’m “hot”). The biggest reason mosquitoes bite me is my blood. Mosquitoes are attracted to certain odorent markers in human blood; blood type O (yours truly) emits more of these markers than any other blood type. Apparently, in the insect world, I’m special. I can’t hide from mosquitoes; they can smell dinner up to fifty meters away. All things considered, I really am an all-you-can-eat buffet for these annoying pests.

I’ve tried spray-on insect repellents, repellent wristbands, and Avon Skin-So-Soft to no avail, so I continue to slap myself silly whenever I feel the familiar, summer sting. But fall is around the corner! The mosquitoes’ days are numbered!

So, farewell, bloodsuckers! As summer dies down,

I look forward to days when you won’t be around.

So long, gallnippers! You’ll soon die away!

I’ll no longer be dinner to nourish your day.

Adios, buggers! The buffet will soon close.

You shant feast upon me as I quietly doze.

Mosquito! Mosquito! I squish you down flat.

Music to my ears: splat, splat, splat!

Slapping Myself Silly!

anne mikolay 2012 120Summer is winding down. I can’t say I’m sorry to see it go. It hasn’t been a very good season for me. I didn’t visit half the places I intended to, nor did I accomplish much of anything meaningful this summer. In fact, I spent quite a lot of time slapping myself silly. Why? Because apparently the word has spread among the insect population that this Irish gal offers an all-you-can-eat buffet. Despite my sizable backyard, mosquitoes have an annoying ability of zeroing in on me, and they always have.

When I was a little girl, mosquitoes feasted on me. I recall waking up more than once with bitten, swollen lips so large I looked as though I had received an overdose of Botox. It was painful, unsightly, and scary. For a time, I was so afraid to go to bed at night that my father hung a preventative No-Pest strip from my bedroom ceiling. It didn’t work. I remained dinner for mosquitoes. My mother had a variety of home remedies for itchy bug bites and suggested applying a mixture of salt and baking soda or squeezing vitamin E oil from a vitamin capsule onto the itchy spot. Both worked – for about ten minutes. For me, the only real cure for itchy insect bites is calamine lotion, so I go about my daily errands with pink-streaked legs. Hey, if the younger generation can dye their hair purple and blue, a middle aged lady like myself can walk around with pink-striped skin!

So why do those nasty gallnippers find me so tasty? According to Scienceline.org, I possess the ingredients that comprise an attractive mosquito meal. Mosquitoes are drawn to people who emit large amounts of carbon dioxide (yes, I’ve been told I’m full of hot air) and have a warm body temperature (no, I’ve never been told I’m “hot”). The biggest reason mosquitoes bite me is my blood. Mosquitoes are attracted to certain odorent markers in human blood; blood type O (yours truly) emits more of these markers than any other blood type. Apparently, in the insect world, I’m special. I can’t hide from mosquitoes; they can smell dinner up to fifty meters away. All things considered, I really am an all-you-can-eat buffet for these annoying pests.

I’ve tried spray-on insect repellents, repellent wristbands, and Avon Skin-So-Soft to no avail, so I continue to slap myself silly whenever I feel the familiar, summer sting. But fall is around the corner! The mosquitoes’ days are numbered!

So, farewell, bloodsuckers! As summer dies down,

I look forward to days when you won’t be around.

So long, gallnippers! You’ll soon die away!

I’ll no longer be dinner to nourish your day.

Adios, buggers! The buffet will soon close.

You shant feast upon me as I quietly doze.

Mosquito! Mosquito! I squish you down flat.

Music to my ears: splat, splat, splat!

Sea Walls Do Not Work

Seawalls do not work, they give false hope, and leaving people vulnerable for the next storm.

History has shown us that sea walls like the one in Sea Bright fail. Every time there is a major storm the water goes over the wall, or the wall itself gets knocked down by the storm causing more flooding.

The river keeps trying to meet the ocean in the middle of town.

We are better off with a holistic approach that moves people out of harms way, mitigates for sea level rise and restores natural systems like dunes. Gov. Christie does not believe in climate change and denies that sea level rise are real threats.

New Jersey is doing nothing to mitigate for sea level rise climate impacts. Instead we take millions of dollars, wasting those funds on walls that will not work and will not protect people or property.

The definition of insanity is to do the same thing over and over again and expect a different outcome. Sea Bright sea wall is not very bright!

Jeff Tittel
Director, NJ Sierra Club

Sea Walls Do Not Work

Seawalls do not work, they give false hope, and leaving people vulnerable for the next storm.

History has shown us that sea walls like the one in Sea Bright fail. Every time there is a major storm the water goes over the wall, or the wall itself gets knocked down by the storm causing more flooding.

The river keeps trying to meet the ocean in the middle of town.

We are better off with a holistic approach that moves people out of harms way, mitigates for sea level rise and restores natural systems like dunes. Gov. Christie does not believe in climate change and denies that sea level rise are real threats.

New Jersey is doing nothing to mitigate for sea level rise climate impacts. Instead we take millions of dollars, wasting those funds on walls that will not work and will not protect people or property.

The definition of insanity is to do the same thing over and over again and expect a different outcome. Sea Bright sea wall is not very bright!

Jeff Tittel
Director, NJ Sierra Club

Snyder Drive Garage Fire is Extinquished in Middletown

MIDDLETOWN, NJ – At 5:10 AM on Saturday August 30th, 2014, the Middletown Township Fire Department was dispatched to a “possible structure fire in the area of 9 Snyder Drive”. Approximately 35 firefighters from 3 companies of the Middletown Township Fire Department (East Keansburg, Port Monmouth, and Old Village Fire Companies), under the command of Department Deputy Chief Rick Hibell, responded to the scene.

Arriving fire units observed smoke coming from the attached garage of a two and a half story residential structure at 7 Snyder Drive. Crews form East Keansburg Fire Company deployed hose lines to attack a fire in the garage. Chief Hibell declared the fire under control by 5:30 AM. The last units left the scene by 6:15 AM.

The fire was contained to the garage area. The residential portion of the structure sustained minor smoke damage.

Also assisting at the scene were the Middletown Township First Aid Squads and the MTFD Air Unit.

There were no reported injuries during the incident.

The fire is being investigated by the Middletown Township Fire Prevention office.

Snyder Drive Garage Fire is Extinquished in Middletown

MIDDLETOWN, NJ – At 5:10 AM on Saturday August 30th, 2014, the Middletown Township Fire Department was dispatched to a “possible structure fire in the area of 9 Snyder Drive”. Approximately 35 firefighters from 3 companies of the Middletown Township Fire Department (East Keansburg, Port Monmouth, and Old Village Fire Companies), under the command of Department Deputy Chief Rick Hibell, responded to the scene.

Arriving fire units observed smoke coming from the attached garage of a two and a half story residential structure at 7 Snyder Drive. Crews form East Keansburg Fire Company deployed hose lines to attack a fire in the garage. Chief Hibell declared the fire under control by 5:30 AM. The last units left the scene by 6:15 AM.

The fire was contained to the garage area. The residential portion of the structure sustained minor smoke damage.

Also assisting at the scene were the Middletown Township First Aid Squads and the MTFD Air Unit.

There were no reported injuries during the incident.

The fire is being investigated by the Middletown Township Fire Prevention office.

Freeholders Promote 2014 Hunger Action Month

hunger action orangeUrge residents to help and “wear orange” Sept. 4

FREEHOLD, NJ – The Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders is promoting Hunger Action Month for the month of September and urging everyone to “wear orange” on Sept. 4.

“The Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders is proud to support this national effort to raise public awareness to the needs of the hungry,” Freeholder John P. Curley said. “The sad fact is more than 80,000 people in MonmouthCounty face hunger every day, many of whom are formerly working, middle class families who lost their jobs or are underemployed.”

Hunger Action Month is a national campaign by Feeding America, the country’s leading domestic hunger-relief charity. The organization feeds America’s hungry through a nationwide network of member food banks, including the FoodBank of Monmouth and OceanCounties.

During the entire month of September, five orange banners will hang on the Monmouth County Hall of Records to further raise awareness for the cause.

The County’s public awareness support comes on the heels of the Hope for the Hungry Concert held in the Hall of Records Plaza on Aug. 27. The concert was held in memory of Bill Heine, the County’s spokesman who passed away suddenly in 2012, who had been a supporter of the FoodBank and efforts to reduce hunger in the County.

MonmouthCounty employees also conduct a month-long countywide food drive each spring that has already put provided more than 30 tons of food for the FoodBank.

“Residents of MonmouthCounty have been extremely generous in their support of food drives,” said Curley. “But fighting hunger is a constant battle. I encourage everyone to continue their support of the FoodBank by visiting their website at www.foodbankmoc.org to find out how they can help the hungry this month and throughout the year.”

The FoodBank is located at 3300 State Highway 66 in Neptune Township, NJ07753. The telephone number is 732-918-2600. 

Freeholders Promote 2014 Hunger Action Month

hunger action orangeUrge residents to help and “wear orange” Sept. 4

FREEHOLD, NJ – The Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders is promoting Hunger Action Month for the month of September and urging everyone to “wear orange” on Sept. 4.

“The Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders is proud to support this national effort to raise public awareness to the needs of the hungry,” Freeholder John P. Curley said. “The sad fact is more than 80,000 people in MonmouthCounty face hunger every day, many of whom are formerly working, middle class families who lost their jobs or are underemployed.”

Hunger Action Month is a national campaign by Feeding America, the country’s leading domestic hunger-relief charity. The organization feeds America’s hungry through a nationwide network of member food banks, including the FoodBank of Monmouth and OceanCounties.

During the entire month of September, five orange banners will hang on the Monmouth County Hall of Records to further raise awareness for the cause.

The County’s public awareness support comes on the heels of the Hope for the Hungry Concert held in the Hall of Records Plaza on Aug. 27. The concert was held in memory of Bill Heine, the County’s spokesman who passed away suddenly in 2012, who had been a supporter of the FoodBank and efforts to reduce hunger in the County.

MonmouthCounty employees also conduct a month-long countywide food drive each spring that has already put provided more than 30 tons of food for the FoodBank.

“Residents of MonmouthCounty have been extremely generous in their support of food drives,” said Curley. “But fighting hunger is a constant battle. I encourage everyone to continue their support of the FoodBank by visiting their website at www.foodbankmoc.org to find out how they can help the hungry this month and throughout the year.”

The FoodBank is located at 3300 State Highway 66 in Neptune Township, NJ07753. The telephone number is 732-918-2600. 

Four Gallery Exhibitions Opening in September at Monmouth University

mu ca exhib lowlands

IMAGE: Mavis Smith, Lowlands, 2013, egg tempera on panel, 37″ x 24″

WEST LONG BRANCH, NJ – Monmouth University’s Center for the Arts is pleased to announce four new gallery exhibitions opening in September in three on-campus galleries.

Mavis Smith’s exhibition, “Think Again,” will be on display on the first floor of the DiMattio Gallery in the new Joan and Robert Rechnitz Hall. The exhibit will include the Bucks County, PA, artist’s paintings and works on paper, as well as recent sculptural works incorporating eggshells. Smith’s works, which are often done in egg tempera, bring an almost surreal aesthetic to her paintings that suggest the dislocation of appearances and realities.  Imagining the hidden realities of other people’s existences is a continuing theme in her work. Smith explains, “it’s not so much specific people or events, but the general sense of unknown depths that intrigues me.” Having studied at the Pratt Institute in the 1970’s, Smith has exhibited her work in Holland and Switzerland as well as Santa Fe, New York City, and several venues in NJ and PA including a solo show in 2012 at the Michener Art Museum in Doylestown, PA. The opening reception for this exhibition will be on Friday, September 19 from 7– 9 pm and the exhibition will run until October 17.

Continue reading Four Gallery Exhibitions Opening in September at Monmouth University

Four Gallery Exhibitions Opening in September at Monmouth University

mu ca exhib lowlands

IMAGE: Mavis Smith, Lowlands, 2013, egg tempera on panel, 37″ x 24″

WEST LONG BRANCH, NJ – Monmouth University’s Center for the Arts is pleased to announce four new gallery exhibitions opening in September in three on-campus galleries.

Mavis Smith’s exhibition, “Think Again,” will be on display on the first floor of the DiMattio Gallery in the new Joan and Robert Rechnitz Hall. The exhibit will include the Bucks County, PA, artist’s paintings and works on paper, as well as recent sculptural works incorporating eggshells. Smith’s works, which are often done in egg tempera, bring an almost surreal aesthetic to her paintings that suggest the dislocation of appearances and realities.  Imagining the hidden realities of other people’s existences is a continuing theme in her work. Smith explains, “it’s not so much specific people or events, but the general sense of unknown depths that intrigues me.” Having studied at the Pratt Institute in the 1970’s, Smith has exhibited her work in Holland and Switzerland as well as Santa Fe, New York City, and several venues in NJ and PA including a solo show in 2012 at the Michener Art Museum in Doylestown, PA. The opening reception for this exhibition will be on Friday, September 19 from 7– 9 pm and the exhibition will run until October 17.

Continue reading Four Gallery Exhibitions Opening in September at Monmouth University