Why Dan is Wrong
The presenter was very authoritative, but some of the board comments were not audible due to the ambient noise from a clanging radiator, which recalled the winter sound track of my childhood home in the 1940s. The harsh light, the hard chair and the struggle to hear, plus the length of the agenda, made me think I should have just stayed home.
Dan strolled in a little after 7 p.m. and schmoozed with the councilwomen briefly before they left. I still didn't have the name of the presenter and was wondering how late I would have to stay to get it. Mark Spivey arrived, and looking around, I could see a couple other bloggers.
It wasn't until about 8:30 p.m. that board president Lenny Cathcart went to the stage and picked up a microphone, which he brought to the table for speakers to use. By then, I was convinced that I was not going to get a story. I decided to leave it up to the others to report on the policy committee meeting.
Dan, the aggregating man, apparently stayed long enough to take attendance and assign homework: "Bernice Paglia can be expected to put up her report ..."
Well, this aggregatee bailed, but was able to get a scoop on the way home when Mayor SRB returned my call about the status of a cabinet member. So there.
Readers know all too well what I think of aggregators who make cameo appearances at meetings, then opine on the work of those who stayed the course. Sorry it didn't work out Tuesday, Dan.
The genesis of my surly attitude can be seen in the long right-hand teaser column on Dan's blog. All six entries for January, and many more in the archives, start out with "Bernice: ..." Over the years since June 2005, some people formed the impression that I work for Dan, due to his heavy reliance on my content. No, I do not take orders from Dan.
My experience Tuesday sort of reconfirms why I decided that school board meetings are just out of reach for me. Dan can probably still assume that if he sees me at a council meeting, he will have content the next day to aggregate. Those sessions meet my "walkability" requirements. So do Planning Board, Zoning Board of Adjustment and Historic Preservation Commission meetings that take place in City Hall Library. But unless I take up driving again, you won't see me at 1200 Myrtle Avenue.
Meanwhile, are Dan and Bernice the Fred Allen and Jack Benny of the Plainfield blogosphere?