Directed by former Wakefield resident Nancy Curran Willis
St. Patrick’s Day is coming up, and as much as we’d like to, most of us can’t just drop everything and go off to celebrate in Ireland. Fortunately, the Arlington Friends of the Drama are offering a very attractive alternative that will whisk you off to Ireland for two charming hours. And you won’t even need a carry-on.
The Mai (pronounced “May”) is Irish playwright Marina Carr’s lyrical and allegorical tragicomedy about love, tradition, heritage and family, told through a mix of Irish storytelling, Greek mythology and feminine politics.
Continue reading ‘‘The Mai’ Brings Irish Humor & Tragedy to Arlington Friends of the Drama’
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Tags: Anne Sullivan, Antione Malfroy-Carmine, Arlington Friends of the Drama, Demetra Tseckares-Restuccia, Iain Bason, Ireland, Irish, Jenna Lourenco, Jennifer Soucy, Katie Higgins, Marina Carr, Mark Sardella, Massachusetts, Nancy Curran Willis, Nellie Farrington, play, The Mai, theater, theatre, Tricia Akowicz, Wakefield Daily Item, Wakefield MA
Whenever the government says it is taking steps to make life easier for me, my BS detector goes off.
The latest example is the Massachusetts Legislature’s effort to “reform” elections and voting. The House and Senate bills are currently in conference committee where they are negotiating a version that both branches can agree upon.
The bills include such provisions as online voter registration, election-day registration, early voting, “pre-registration” for those as young as 16 and “permanent registration.”
Advocates say that these reforms are needed in order to increase participation by making voting easier.
In order to fully appreciate the need for these reforms, let’s examine the punishingly arduous process that voters are currently forced to endure.
Continue reading ‘Voting Made Easy’
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Tags: ballot, early voting, elections, MA, Mark Sardella, Massachusetts, polls, reform, registration, vote, voter, voting, Wakefield Daily Item
“I’ve been very lucky to do 10 of Mr. Sondheim’s works,” says Leigh Barrett, a 1983 Wakefield High School graduate who has gone on to an award-winning professional career as one of the top leading ladies of Boston’s musical theater scene.
Barrett has won two Elliot Norton Awards for Outstanding Actress (in 2004 and 2007), a 2004 Independent Reviewers of New England (INRE) Award for Best Supporting Actress and a 2006 INRE Award for Outstanding Actress.
Set in Manhattan, Company revolves around the handsome and successful Bobby and his social circle of married and soon-to-be married couples. As his 35th birthday celebration approaches, his three very different girlfriends join the rest of his inner circle in wondering why Bobby hasn’t yet settled into one serious relationship. What emerges is a touching and often hilarious meditation on love, marriage and the role of “company” in our lives.
Continue reading ‘For Leigh Barrett, Sondheim is good “Company”’
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Tags: actor, actress, Boston, Company, Leigh Barrett, Massachusetts, Moonbox Productions, stage, Stephen Sondheim, theater, theatre, Wakefield MA
Early in 2014, Massachusetts issued its first 20 “Medical Marijuana Licenses.” By summer, as you’re out driving with your kids, you’ll be seeing signs for such establishments as Garden Remedies of Newton, Greeneway Wellness Foundation in Cambridge, Green Heart Holistic Health & Pharmaceuticals of Boston and Good Chemistry of Worcester.
Because they’re just getting established at this point, they all have semi-respectable sounding names in order to perpetuate the scam. But in a couple of years, after the charade ends and we have legal recreational pot stores like they do in Colorado and Washington, we’ll be seeing more creative, and accurate, signage for places like “Herb’s Haven,” “Bud’s Bakery” “The Pot Hole” and “Wasted Management.”
And why even talk about legalizing pot “for recreational purposes?” Because let’s face it – there are no other purposes. The term is redundant. This whole “medical” marijuana movement is little more than a smokescreen for the real endgame, which is full legalization of weed. So why insult our intelligence with the interim step of medical marijuana?
Voters across the state, including right here in Wakefield, bought the whole snake oil scheme – that it was about compassion for sick people who needed marijuana to ease their suffering and were unable or afraid to buy it illegally. (Who can forget those nightly news stories of Parkinson’s patients being hauled out of their homes in cuffs for possessing a couple of joints?)
In any case, Massachusetts voters approved medical marijuana when it was on the statewide ballot a couple of years ago. That left municipal officials, who actually have to think things through, to deal with the fallout.
If “medical marijuana” were truly about medicine, why then are cities and towns across the state are scrambling to create rules to keep these pot “dispensaries” as far away from schools as possible? Yet right here in Wakefield, we recently permitted CVS Pharmacy to locate practically next door to the Galvin Middle School. That’s because, unlike Garden Remedies, CVS deals in actual medicine.
A real pharmacist, quoted last year in the Boston Globe, put it best. “Medicine is not smoked and it is not compounded into food or candies. If you want it to be called medicine, treat it as medicine.”
Perhaps most puzzling of all, no one ever seems to address the gigantic elephant in the room: the fact that there is universal agreement that inhaling the filtered smoke of one burning plant, tobacco, is deadly. Yet medical pot advocates would have us believe that inhaling the unfiltered smoke of another burning plant is not only harmless, but good for you!
Indeed, by legalizing medical marijuana, we’ve told children that pot is medicine. And even kids know that medicine, when taken as directed, is safe, right? Except that there are no “directions” or dosage guidelines for marijuana. It’s up to each individual “patient.”
Meanwhile, Governor Deval Patrick’s FY 2015 state budget proposal includes new taxes on candy and soda. I’m sure it’s just a lucky coincidence. Our governor has never needed any extra incentive to raise taxes or create new ones. Still, if the tax on candies and soda goes through, it will likely be a gateway tax to a full-blown munchies tax, including the likes of Doritos and Cheez-Its.
Just imagine the devastating effect that will have on medical marijuana “patients.”
[This column originally appeared in the February 6, 2014 Wakefield Daily Item.]
Filed under: Columns & Essays, Opinion, Politics, Wakefield | 2 Comments
Tags: cannabis, CVS, drugs, herb, marijuana, Mark Sardella, Massachusetts, medical marijuana, medicine, pot, Wakefield Daily Item, Wakefield MA, weed
In formally announcing his candidacy yesterday for the 6th Congressional District seat currently held by Rep. John F. Tierney, Wakefield, MA resident Richard Tisei promised the crowd that packed the Heritage Room at the Americal Center two things.
“I will work hard for the people of this district,” Tisei vowed, “and I won’t disappoint you.”
Republican Tisei narrowly lost a 2012 bid to unseat longtime Democratic incumbent Tierney. Tisei said yesterday that he decided to run again due to the encouragement of people in the district and because “our country is in even worse shape and in greater danger at this moment than it was just two years ago.”
Continue reading ‘Tisei Vows to Be an Independent Congressman’
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Tags: Americal Civic Center, campaign, Congress, election, Erin Calvo-Bacci, John Tierney, Mark Sardella, Massachusetts, Mike Buetow, Richard Tisei, Wakefield Daily Item, Wakefield MA
Court OKs defense request for mental evaluation of accused child sexual abuser
By Mark Sardella (Wakefield Daily Item 1/7/2014)
A date has been set for the much-anticipated trial of John Burbine, the Wakefield,Massachusetts man accused of over 100 counts raping and sexually abusing more than a dozen children.
In a status hearing yesterday before Judge Kimberly Budd at Middlesex Superior Court in Woburn, a date of Thursday, May 1 has been set for the start of jury selection with opening arguments anticipated to begin as soon as Monday, May 5. The court also set a date of April 17 for a pre-trial conference to finalize such issues as juror questions and for the court to rule on any motions to eliminate evidence.
Continue reading ‘Date Set for Burbine Trial’
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Tags: attorney, child abuse, child sex abuse, children, crime, Distric Attorney, John Burbine, Judge Kimberly Budd, Katherine Folger, Mark Sardella, Middlesex Superior Court, Wakefield Daily Item, Wakefield MA, Wakefield Massachusetts, William Barabino
As we enter the New Year, the time has come to make some bold predictions for 2014. So let’s dust off the old crystal ball, shall we? Come to think of it, the whole house could use a good dusting. I’ll begin by predicting that that will not happen in 2014.
People ask how I am able to foresee the future with such uncanny accuracy. I can only say that it is a gift.
So let us begin. Here are my 10 predictions for 2014.
• I predict that a new educational facility will open in Wakefield, Massachusetts in 2014 and it will bear the name of a great military leader.
• I foresee that former State Senator Richard Tisei will challenge Congressman See-No-Evil John Tierney. The Tierney campaign will insist that pro-choice, pro-gay marriage Tisei is nothing but a Tea Party Republican out to advance an extreme GOP agenda.
Continue reading ‘Ten Bold Predictions for 2014’
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Tags: 2014, forecast, Galvin Middle School, Independence Day Parade, John Tierney, July 4th, Lake Quannapowitt, Mark Sardella, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, parking, Politics, predictions, Richard Tisei, Scott Brown, Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, Wakefield Daily Item, Wakefield MA