As I was driving to the Simon of Cyrene Society breakfast this morning, I decided to call much loved Dorchester stalwart Maria Rosetti Polvere Tuffo. Maria is in her 80's and is a delight and inspiration to all, she has received many awards for being a concert pianist, has been her Parish's Person of the Year, used to play the piano in City Hall where the mayor would send a car to pick her up, etc., etc.
I met her for the first time earlier this year at a senior's event with her charming but straight talking second husband Joe. They invited my fiance Clara and I over for dinner, an invitation we accepted, saying to ourselves "we'll only stay for an hour". Well, we ended up cancelling all our other events that night, talked for hours and were the recepients of a lovely recital.
I hadn't talked to them in quite some time so I just thought it a friendly gesture to say hi while I was going to the breakfast. Joe answered, we exchanged pleasantries, and he said:
Joe "Do you know that woman running for city council, what's her name?
Kevin "you mean patricia white?"
Joe "yeah, that's her. Well we only met her one time down at the parish and I woke up and she had a sign in our yard. We never gave her permission, I don't even know the lady.....what do you think I should do?"
Kevin "hey, its your yard. No one has the right to put a sign in your yard. If you don't want it take it down."
Joe " yeah, I think I'll take it down"
Again, (read my previous blog about flaherty and o'malley sticking signs in people's yards) I'm amazed that these people do this. The tone Joe used in talking to me was one of fear of being in trouble from the politicians if he took it down. This is really messed up. When the people are afraid of politicians who aren't even elected, our system is out of whack.
This is especially despicable with the elderly. Many of them are tired, poor, afraid and amazingly I often hear that they don't want to get in trouble or upset anyone. Joe is not tired, poor or afraid and he still is hesitant.
I had heard that politicians do things like ask for people's names and addresses and then take that as acceptance for putting a sign in their yard. The lattice of coincidence is that last night I was at the Marion Manor and Patricia was there with her staff and she spoke to an elderly woman at my table, they exchanged pleasantries, and then Patricia had her staff write down that person's name and address. I didn't think anything of it, we are all taking down people's information to send them stuff and get them on our phone lists. But after what I heard this morning, I'm wondering if they will get an unwanted sign in their garden as well?