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Sunday, November 23, 2008

11/23/08 READER SUBMITTED COMMENTS: Mr. Robben's itty bitty view




Editor Greenwich Roundup:


Maybe Ex Greenwich Time Photographer John Ferris Robben should stop playing amature pet photographer and start doing his job!!! In order to EDIT NEWS, he might want to try FINDING NEWS . Then he might want to SKIP NEWS which is already printed here, there, and everywhere bcause by the time he prints it, its OLD NEWS. Somehow, LAST WEEKS NEWS, doesn't have the draw that TODAY'S NEWS does.

Mr. Robben, the secret of a successful newspaper is the same as a successful web site. It is NEWSSSSSS.

NOT SOME NEWS half true, or MOSTLY NEWS FROM OTHER TOWNS. Ignore the old expression, "NO NEWS IS GOOD NEWS," bc it doesn't apply to the press.

And finally, why don't you form a Greenwich Photography Club.

Maybe take photos of EVERYTHING you and your incompetent staff fail to report on. Maybe capture some news in pictures for people who can't read, or who don't understand English, or for our Pre School aged Greenwich Children.

You getting any of this?

Maybe buy a decent camera too. And unglue your eye from the lens-you are missing the big picture, sir.

Bill D.
Riverside
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11/23/08 Greenwich Time News Links For Sunday



There's no one way to tell a good story. Just take it from Christ Church members Marijane Marks and Kay Langan.

Greenwich residents loaned their cr ches to Christ Church, 254 E. Putnam Ave., for the new exhibit, titled "Follow the Star," which drew an estimated 500 people Thursday through Saturday at the church's parish hall. Money from ticket sales will benefit the parish gift shop.
Ecumenical collectibles on display over the weekend hailed from five continents and dozens of countries, including Mexico, China, France, Germany, Italy and Israel, said Marks, co-manager of the gift shop who helped organized the three-day show.

"It really provides you with a study in cross-cultural anthropology," said Langan, a fellow parishioner and co-organizer. "You get to see how different cultures personalized the (nativity) scene and made it relevant to their own lives, in their own way."



Town merchants try to entice consumers to shop locally
Sonia Malloy has added baby clothes. Joe Flynn has offered free delivery for orders made before Dec. 1 and Elizabeth Hoffman has mailed her loyal customers a $50 gift card.

Facing a critical holiday shopping season, Greenwich merchants are doing everything they can think of to lure customers into their stores.

"Take everything you knew and throw it out the window in this economy," said Joe Flynn of Patsy Crucitti & Sons Inc. Florist and Greenhouses at 1381 E. Putnam Ave., which has suffered low everyday sales since last year.

Like it or loathe it, the holidays mean spending money. Local retailers rely on holiday sales for as much as 40 percent of their annual revenue, great in a good year and terrible in a bad one like 2008 is expected to be.

So Flynn is hoping to defy predictions through innovative sales practices and good-old-fashioned customer service, targeting niche markets such as houses of worship with a relatively inexpensive flyer campaign, offering discounts on new products and promising free delivery for early orders.

"I just thought I'd offer people some incentives," he said. "Ideas are cheap. You gotta put it in motion."

Sonia Malloy of Splurge, a new gift boutique closer to Greenwich Avenue at 19 E. Putnam Ave., has done the same.

"I'm very cognizant of price-point value," she said. Most of her holiday advertising reads, "Many gifts under $50."

Malloy has added baby gifts to her selection -always a happy purchase, she said - and.......

With the epilogue already starting to be written on the Bush presidency, Greenwich, the town with a storied Republican tradition and close familial ties to the current White House occupants, finds itself starting a new chapter of its own.

But will the town continue to be a player in national politics under a Barack Obama administration?

Are Greenwich's days as fundraising mecca numbered?

Despite losing its pipeline to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. through its Bush family connections and the waning GOP influence in the Northeast, several top local Republicans and Democrats agreed that Greenwich will continue to be heard.

"I think, first of all, money is the mother's milk of politics. I think Greenwich will always have influence," said Ned Lamont, a member of the Obama campaign's national finance committee from town who garnered national recognition two summers ago with his upset of Joe Lieberman in Connecticut's Democratic Senate primary.

Others acknowledged that the changing political landscape might not favor Greenwich, however, including L. Scott Frantz, a top GOP fundraiser from Riverside who produced one of the few bright moments for Republicans in this past election with his resounding victory over Stamford Democrat Mark Diamond in the state's 36th District Senate race.

"My guess is (the town's political influence) will be significantly less after the new president takes office, but I do see that as temporary," Frantz said. "Although the voters have spoken......

'On Stage Family Day' at Bruce Museum

The Bruce Museum presents "On Stage Family Day" from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. today at the Bruce Museum, 1 Museum Drive.

Family activities take place all afternoon with a special musical performance at 3 p.m. by the Connecticut Opera Express, which will present "The Three Little Pigs." All activities are suitable for people of all abilities, ages 5 and up, and are free with museum admission.
Admission is $7 for adults, $6 for seniors and students and free for children under 5 and members.

For more information, call the museum at 869-0376 or visit www.brucemuseum.org.
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Thanksgiving feast at Boys & Girls Club

The Boys & Girls Club of Greenwich will host its annual Thanksgiving feast for children in the club's after-school program at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday in the Club Game Room, 4 Horseneck Lane.

These 300 children will dine on turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, vegetables, rolls and pies. Serving the children that day will be club board members and staff, local dignitaries and school principals.

For more information, contact Don Palmer at 869-3224, ext. 102, or dpalmer@bgcg.org.
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St. Catherine church offers interfaith service

The public is invited to the annual Interfaith Communal Thanksgiving Service at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at St. Catherine of Siena Church, 4 Riverside Ave.

Attendees are asked to bring non-perishable food items that will be donated to Neighbor to Neighbor.

For more information, call Rabbi Mitchell M. Hurvitz at 542-7150 or e-mail rabbimitch@templesholom.com.
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SPLURGE hosts food drive through Nov. 30
SPLURGE Unique Gifts, Home DŽcor and Jewelry, 19A East Putnam Ave., is collecting canned and dry food donations through Nov. 30 to support Neighbor to Neighbor in Greenwich.

The following foods are requested: dried and canned beans, boxed milk, canned fruits and vegetables, cereal, 100 percent fruit juice, and peanut butter and jelly. Donors may pick up a shopping bag and list of requested items at SPLURGE, which will offer 10 percent off purchases made by a donor on the day of their donation.

Neighbor to Neighbor provides free food to families in Greenwich and receives no government assistance.

SPLURGE is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m.

For more information, call Sonia Sotire Malloy at 869-7600.
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Holiday morning swim
at Boys & Girls Club

The Boys & Girls Club of Greenwich, 4 Horseneck Lane, will hold a Thanksgiving-morning swim from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. Thursday.

For more information, call Bob DeAngelo or Don Palmer at 869-3224.
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United Way legislative breakfast set for Dec. 9

The United Way of Greenwich Community Planning Council will host its annual Legislative Breakfast from 8 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. Dec. 9 in the first-floor Cone Room at Town Hall, 101 Field Point Road.

Sign-in is at 7:45 a.m.

For more information or to RSVP, call 869-2221 or e-mail csmit@unitedway-greenwich.com.

Schools may slash holidays
The Veterans Day and Columbus Day holidays could become mandatory school days for Greenwich public school students under a proposal being considered by the Board of Education.

School officials are asking the board to revise the school calendar so that classes are held on one or both of the national holidays starting in the 2010-11 school year in hopes of minimizing what they call routine disruptions to the learning process.

Those two months are "so filled with holidays, it is disruptive to teachers," said the district's director of human resources, Ellen Flanagan, adding that teachers often must contend with a three-day week followed by a four-day week.

The reasons: Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur, which the state requires school districts to reserve as holidays, often fall in October and November. Thanksgiving knocks another two days off the calendar in late November, already a shorter month at 30 days, Flanagan noted.

Schools are typically closed for Election Day in early November, when many of the campuses are used as polling places. In addition, district officials usually schedule two staff development days in those two months.

By eliminating the Columbus and Veterans day holidays, school officials would create a more front-loaded calendar that would provide more flexibility for scheduling make-up snow days in the summer, said Cathy Delehanty, president of the Greenwich Education Association.Connecticut school districts are required to make up those days .......
Move over, hybrid cars. Electric bicycles may soon gain momentum as the next big thing in eco-friendly travel.


Greenwich water polo teams enjoy success at Speedo Cup
The Greenwich middle school water polo teams found success at the 2008 Speedo Cup earlier this month at the University of Michigan


There's a small ray of economic sunshine peeking through the fiscal gloom that now shrouds Connecticut.

Amid a rapidly increasing number of housing foreclosures, rising unemployment and declining revenues on the state and local levels, Connecticut's export economy continues to grow.
In fact, new data from the World Institute for Strategic Economic Research at Holyoke Community College indicate that Connecticut's exports abroad increased by 12.6 percent in September from one year ago for the same month.

That increase falls in line with a similar report from the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston that shows Connecticut exports up 12.2 percent for the second quarter of this year.

Connecticut is the second-largest exporting state in New England, surpassed only by Massachusetts.

These latest increases in exports are part of a trend that began earlier this decade for Connecticut, which annually has posted growth in exports, chiefly to Canada, Mexico and several Western European countries including France, Germany and the United Kingdom. ...... Blah ...... Blah ..... Blah ...... Blah ....... Blah ,,,,,,,,


Firing someone has never been easy

Massive firings in the staggering business and banking fields have reached tragic proportions, and the worst part is that it probably isn't anywhere near over.

While our sympathy, naturally, is with the victims, I also think of the burden put on the bosses who have to give the employees the heart-breaking news. Only a sadist could relish that task.
I first encountered the challenge while working as deputy director of the Foreign Operations Administration's information section during the Eisenhower administration.


When an order to cut staff came out, I heard for the first time the dread acronym RIF, which stood for reduction in force. It was a word that sent cold shivers through the ranks of the old-time civil service staffers.


It came down to my office to eliminate one position. Under the rules, this would be the last entry on the staff, a gent with limited but passable qualifications. But he was a decent fellow, married with two kids. I really couldn't bring myself to swing the ax.


Finally, I consulted the civil service rep in my department and asked her what, if anything, I could do. The tough old bureaucrat, who had been quite hostile when I first joined up as a political appointee, said she would handle it if I wish. I wished.


A few days later she sauntered into my office and announced it was taken care of. Sign the separation papers, she advised. I looked perplexed. She smiled. "I got him transferred to Commerce," she said in a matter-of-fact manner.

I realized this maneuver hardly fulfilled the mandate to reduce staff, but I confess I was relieved with the rescue. I also realized it proved, which I'd always suspected, I'd never really make a good executive.

COMMENT;

It is clear that Mr. Yudoan And Mr. Pisani never really made a good executives.

That is why the Greenwich Time was such a poor preforming product over the years.

When Ex-Greenwich Time Editor Joe Pisani And A Few Of His Sidekicks Were Fired Last May The Greenwich Time's Online Traffic And Ciculation Shot Up 22%.

In Fact, "Our Greenwich" The Team Blog Staffed By Ex-Low Performing Media Types Is One Of The Poorest Perfrming Blogs In Greenwich.

There Are 13 Year Old Girls In Greenwich Who Have My Space Pages That Get More Readers And Web Traffic Than Ex-Greenwich Time Editor Joe Pisani.


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11/23/08 READER SUBMITTED COMMENTS: Web visitors


Brian - I may have to ditch that damn web counter. Sitemeter doesn't work on Wordpress despite what they say and I had to discontinue it - it was showing, (with URL addresses to prove it) an average of 550 unique visitors a day, 1400 page views. Wordpress's own stats, available to me as administrator, only counts page views but is showing the same 1500-1600 daily page views, so what gives with "global Search"? I don't know.

Anyway, this link in today's NYT won't hurt.




--
Chris Fountain
Riverside CT
(203) 249-4394
http://www.christopherfountain.com/


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11/22/08 Today's Hot Investment Tips Via Greenwich Roundup


Hot stock tip: Invest in green ink!


Here's Another Tip:


REIT Insiders Buy Shares Despite Market Turmoil


Hotels

Janet Morrissey

If actions speak louder than words, then the stock-buying activity of certain real estate investment trust executives may be sending a message that certain REITs have been oversold.....



... anytime you see insider buying, when they're not just exercising options,'' said Lou Taylor, an analyst in the Greenwich, Conn., office of Deutsche Bank Securities Inc. of New York. ``There are some incredibly cheap stocks, which have covered ...

.....Angela Thomson, a certified financial planner and principal at Coastal Financial Planning Inc. in Lincoln, R.I., is cautious about REITs despite the insider-buying activity.

``At this point, with my clients, it doesn't make a difference to me,'' she said. ``You don't know that management isn't making a mistake.''

Still, Ms. Thomson said that the insider buying at Public Storage, a self-storage REIT in Glendale, Calif., is the exception. ``People are still moving out of their houses fast and furious because of foreclosures, so I would say Public Storage would probably be a good [buying] opportunity right now,'' she said.

E-mail Janet Morrissey at jmorrissey@investmentnews.com



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11/22/08 And Now A Business Report From Greenwich Roundup's South African Office



Business Day


BY TONY LEON

Washington DC (or the northwestern section of it, at any rate) is not the place to find it. It is virtually recession-proof, given the high numbers around here who work for government or are involved in lobbying it.....


.....But Greenwich, Connecticut seemed to be a better place to take the weakening pulse of the wealth creators (and latterly destroyers) of the American and world financial markets. One of the wealthiest enclaves in the US, it headquarters the major hedge fund companies and financial service corporations, and is home to some of America’s richest people.


Last Saturday, we approached this gleaming citadel of American capitalism . A friend pointed out two imposing and shiny structures that house UBS Investment Bank’s American trading operations — which boasts the largest trading floor in the world — and the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS).


Both stand today as monuments to the subprime crisis which has caused them to write down, and write off, tens of billions of dollars of dodgy mortgages and credit default swaps.


RBS has become a state-owned asset of Gordon Brown, and UBS’s fate is even worse: last week a US federal grand jury indicted its head of global wealth management on a slew of charges relating to tax evasion .


Our walk along the main street of Greenwich was even more instructive of what Paul Krugman, winner of this year’s Nobel Prize for Economics, recently termed “the long-feared capitulation of American consumers”.


On this crisp autumnal morning, there were hardly any shoppers around in the chic boutiques and luxury store fronts. We were the only visitors at a luggage store. The shop assistant said the dearth of customers was “soul- destroying”. Greenwich might be the high end of American retail, but the desertion of its stores is now reflected across the board.....


.....The marvel of the US economy is that 60% of its citizens own shares , from Warren Buffett to Joe Six-Pack. But it is now demonstrating the defects of this quality: like its wealth, the misery is now spread about, by no means equally.


“The sage of Nebraska”, as Buffett, America’s wealthiest man, is known, has suffered paper losses of $15,9bn due to the stock market plunge. But he’s still worth an estimated $45,8bn. For most Americans, however, the cushion is far less stuffed and their prosperity far more imperilled.


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