Autumn in the North Cemetery.

Sixty miles west of Boston, Massachusetts there is the small New England town of Sturbridge. Located at the junction of I-90 (The Mass Pike), and I-84 it has become known as the "Crossroads of New England". The town was first settled over 300 years ago, and like other small New England towns it has grown just enough over the years to be in a difficult place today. How do we embrace the future without forgetting how we got to our present? How do we attract the right kind of growth, and maintain who we are? And, what about our culture out here in Central Massachusetts?

These pages will cause one to think about how to protect what we have, our future direction, and how to move on in the very best way.

Those thoughts, and other ramblings, will hopefully inspire more thought, conversation, action, and occasionally a smile...

...seems to be working so far

Sunday, July 20, 2008

"OK, Rocky, C'mon out! We Got Ya Surrounded By Selectmen!"

Caught in the act!

These boys were caught in the act of playing with fireworks by the Minnesotan police in this 1934 press photo.

This what the police do. They keep the peace, and keep us safe, and both duties were captured by this old photo. The photo was probably staged for the newspaper, but the point it makes is still important: This is what police do.

Now, if those officers from 74 years ago investigated some noise, or fireworks and found nobody there, they'd probably do what would be done today: make a note, add it to the shift report, and keep an eye peeled. If they caught the rascals then I am sure they would give them a stern lecture and then turn them over to their Ma and Pa. It would be like sitting on Death Row for those kids as they rode home in the cruiser to their unsuspecting parents. Now, if there was something more that had happened, like a rocket sailing through Ol' lady Feebis's window and blowing her canary to Kingdom Come, then I imagine there would be an investigation. Same as today.

That's what police do, they investigate stuff. It's part of keeping the peace, and keeping us safe. They do it very well.

Investigating things is something the milkman doesn't do very well, or the alderman, or the mayor for that matter.

Here in town we are fortunate to have a top shelf police department. They know how to investigate things. And, we also have a State Police Barracks right smack in the middle of town. They know all about this investigation thing, and how it works, too.

Still, some folks would rather have the Fence Viewer, or a selectman be responsible for investigations.

Kinda silly, really. Ain't a selectman's job. In fact, if a selectman did stick their nose into an active investigation above and beyond what would be considered his duties, I am sure the police may want to review their job descriptions with that selectman.

Nope. Ain't a selectman's job at all.

Maybe, if one was worried that an investigation was slow in moving, or not yielding the information one would expect, then maybe, one would ask those in charge of investigations, the police.

Comments are now closed on this post. They can still be viewed--ed.


  1. Does someone in this town actually believe the selectmen should be investigating crimes? Seriously? Chief Ford and his crew aren't doing there job? Such comments from an individual are a slap in the face to our paid police force. Don't tell me - the person spreading those are on a board themselves! Nice code of ethics we have!

  2. Dear Mr. Out Loud:

    Thank you for posting this common sense piece.

    The other blogmaster is doing what he does best: paying lip service to his anti-balance cronies, while promoting a smear campaign using far-reaching stretches of the imagination to place fault and blame where it doesn't exist.

    Of course it's the responsibility of the police to take care of this issue and a report should be provided to Selectmen through the Town Administrator, but said blogmaster at SPW can't find anything to pick on, so he makes it up!

    If someone wants to blame someone for irresponsibility, let's look at the lazy Planning Board who do nothing, PUBLICLY that is, except try to find fault with their colleagues on other town boards and committees.

  3. Here's a thought: the Selectmen have been accused by the SPW blogmaster in the past, of micromanaging the various town boards and committees.

    Yet today, they are expected to do the work of the police?

    I completely agree with you Mr. Out Loud; and Abby T seems to know what the proper protocol is: investigation by police with report to Town Administrator and Selectmen.

  4. Question- if it was your kid involved, would you want to know who was responsible? Wouldn't you want any bystander (selectman or not, official or not) to come forward with any information, accident or not? Withholding pertinent information is just as bad as committing a crime yourself.

  5. To: "Wondering",

    Of course the answer is yes, and that is what we have police for, to investigate just how the fireworks were obtained, and by whom. And, if warranted, charges pressed. Here's the thing, if we let vigilantes take matters into their own hands by demanding that officials other than the police do due diligence on a criminal investigations we will be in an awful mess. BFI picks up my trash, my mail comes to me delivered by a postman, and my taxes go to the town. They each have a duty and a job that we expect them to perform, just like we expect the police to follow through as well. And, they will until they can't go any further, or the case is resolved.

    If a bystander comes forward, then great!! But, I doubt it will happen. In the meantime, let the police do their duty, let the Rec. Department do theirs, and the DPW theirs, and above all, don't demand that a selectman, of all people, get involved in something out of his realm, job description, and jurisdiction.

    I also agree that withholding any information pertinent to an investigation is wrong, but I rely on the police to make the right calls.

    Never, ever support individuals whose purpose is to go around corners, circumvent proper authorities, and to take matters into their own hands. If you do, then you will contribute to just that freedom we loose on that day.

  6. Certain Selectmen were present, certain selectmen know who did it, this selectmaen has not been asked to investigate, he has been asked to do his job. Provide info to the police and lead by example. Even Forrest Gump knew right from wrong.

  7. F. Gump,
    What part of doing his job don't you understand? It is not his job to confront lawbreakers, it is the COPS that do that. Was this person there? How do you know he knows who was there? And if you are so sure, then why the heck haven't you come forward to the police with this "tip"? If you had, they would have investigated, right? It is probably because you don't want to report anything else to the cops here in town because they have you pegged as a trouble maker, and inciter, or a just a plain loon.

    And, who "asked" this selectman to do his "job", you, or that other loon on the planning board? It was most definitely not the police, the TM, or an other selectman, now was it?

    Leaves you.

  8. If you want to talk about leading by example, Forest Gump, then you should look in the mirror.

    There were many people there who lead by example. Parents, teachers, lawyers, doctors, nurses - a whole array of people. Why aren't you talking about some of the business owners who were there? Aren't they also responsible?

    Is your mind so twisted and black that you cannot see how off the mark you are here?

    It's high time you leave the Selectmen alone and stop finding reasons to rip them apart on a daily basis. Your brand of attack is cold, callous and heartless, because you either can't see, or miss the fact that it's not just them you attack: you affect their families - especially their kids who go to local schools and read and hear your crap, their friends, their co-workers, their CLIENTS and overall, this town has a negative feel about it, thanks in huge part to you.

    Talk about killing business opportunities! If I was a business owner and googled Sturbridge before coming here, no doubt your blog would come up, and I'd find somewhere else to bring my business. Empty storefronts? Yep, blame SPW.

  9. I was wondering why this blog had the topic it did. I couldn't believe what I watched tonight. I find it absolutely appalling that Tom Creamer tonight at the BOS meeting asked the chair what he was going to do about the investigation of illegal (not alleged according to Tom) fireworks. Why isn't he asking about the illegal fireworks on the other lakes - Cedar, Leadmine etc.? Does he truly care or is he targeting citizens? (The latter for sure) Why isn't he asking about other crimes in our town? I urge everyone who reads this to send a letter of support to our Chief of police for the professional and capable services they provide and our town and also how upsetting it is to know that a town official, Tom Creamer, is allowed to target our citizens because of his hatred towards them and now expects these untrained citizens to do police work. Is that what our Chief wants? I urge all to ask him and tell him Tom sent you!

  10. Thanks - good idea Barn EB!

    The chiefs email is:

    I agree that we need to say enough is enough!

  11. Obsessive compulsive disorder. In a nutshell that's it. Does he go out in the winter and toss rock salt on the walk in front of the senior center? Is he there when an accident happens because someone ran a stop sign? No. He is not there. Under the pretense of someone got hurt and others should have known better he attacks those that have a differnce in opinion from himself. He is unable to work together. His way, or the highway, or even worse, he'll try to ruin you, your reputation, and your standing in the community.
    Enough. the TM has watched this behavior and done nothing for too long. He is the one that has to end TRC's association with the town boards. the association throws a very bad light on all. I can't respect anything the Planning Board has to offer despite it has some very good people on it. He destroyed the credibility of the board, and is trying to destroy our town as well with his vengeful, hate filled spirit.

    The Amish have it right to some degree---he should be "shunned". Ignored. Unless you walk berside him and smile at his ways, you are a potential target. Time for everyone to wake up. Time for the TM to act.

  12. Just for the record, I am not TRC. Check the IP if you want.

  13. F. Gump you said “a certain selectman was there and a certain selectmen knows who did it” If you are so certain this is true then you should go to the police yourself with the tip. If you know this to be true you must have seen it with your own eyes and were there at the incident. You contradict yourself, shame on you for criticizing people then you do exactly what you accuse others of.

  14. Gump,

    Doesn't really matter. If it walks like a duck...

    And, if you are truly not TRC, then put down the "Creamer", you've already OD'd on SPW Kool-Aid. Get a honest, well thought out, thought of your own.

  15. I agree. If you know something that you are withholding, and have not gone to the cops you are an accessory to the fact. Stop bustin' them, and grow some.

  16. Barn EB Jones
    You took the words right out of my mouth. Who does T. Creamer think he is asking the selectman to investigate “a crime” not an alleged crime “a crime”. So T. C. must have inside information the police don’t. Has T.C. asked that all crimes be investigated, no, just one simply because of the address. He does not ask that the fireworks at Cedar Lake, Big Alum, or Leadmine be investigated. He is selective and has another motive.

  17. zfgoptOne of the differences, I believe, Walker Pond fireworks are done by the Association. The other lakes are not organized, they do it individually.

  18. Association, or individual, it is still illegal unless the permits and certifications for pyrotechnics are in place. Regardless, it is the police that must handle this, not individuals with a vendetta. Watch SPW, wath whose name comes up next, and then sit back and watch what allegations are brought up against that person eventually. witch hunt is too loose of a term. I can't think of the correct one, but egocentric comes to mind.

  19. Want no are mistaken. The WP association has never organized fireworks. They organize the picnic, but never the fireworks. From what I know, they just show up. Someone's uncle shows up from Tennessee with some and then someone's elses college friend from South Carolina brings some. Next thing you know, it is dark and fireworks start getting lit.

  20. Want no trouble,
    You are incorrect with your facts. From this web site you can go to both the Cedar Lake and Big Alum Lake Association web sites both have officers and or Trustees. So both do have Associations and fireworks. Walker Pond Association does not put on any fireworks.

  21. Thanks for the corrections, glad to hear WP does not sponsor the fireworks, but sounds like they condone them, sounds like its been going on for a few years. What is aiding and abetting?

  22. Trouble,

    How does it sound like it condones them? Because no one calls the police? Does everyone condone fireworks? Should everyone ALWAYS call the police when they see fireworks? They would need to quadruple their crew and still wouldn't get to every call! A little common sense and safety can go a long way! I'm sure lessons were learned at WP but what about the other fireworks that goes on on Leadmine, Cedar, S Pond, in backyards, at bbqs? How far should citizen policing go? Speeding cars? Traffic violations?

  23. Glad to see others chiming in on this issue, but I hope it doesn't stop here.

    Whenever there is a new post at SPW, it should be dissected to determine its content and factuality. Take the time to do it, and the truth of the matter will be revealed. SPW's tactic is to exclude important and relevant points.

    And here's one for you, Lollipop: how come I don't see any of your comments at SPW? You're intent on supporting such garbage at his site, and go to such lengths as to point out we're "attacking" SPW here?

    Pardon me, but you have not pointed out that SPW attacks people on his blog. So I've come to the conclusion that you ARE, TRC. No one in his or her right mind could possibly support such content as that which is written at SPW.

  24. Tom Creamer's hot on this issue because some residents who live in Walker Pond, are his targets, make no mistake about it. He stated that he didn't follow the Duck Prank at the High School. You better believe if children of the folks he has bullied, over this past year, had been involved in the Duck Prank, it would have been on his SPW blog within minutes.

  25. Daily Reader, guess you're of the opinion that you're either for me or against me, sorry but I don't see issues in black or white, there's gray in my world.
    If you want to think I'm TRC, go ahead but I'm not.
    You talk about attack, I want to stay with issues, not personalities

  26. Daily Reader, guess you're of the opinion that you're either for me or against me, sorry but I don't see issues in black or white, there's gray in my world.
    If you want to think I'm TRC, go ahead but I'm not.
    You talk about attack, I want to stay with issues, not personalities

  27. Well then Lollipop,

    If you're staying with issues, you need to investigate your facts, and keep an open mind. Only then can you say you're truly gray-minded.