If you live or walk or get lost near a wooded area at this time of year, you’re bound to hear the distant (or worse, not so distant) blam! of gunfire. This is especially disconcerting when you realize you’re wearing earth-tone clothes, and you recall that a blazing orange polypro jacket — maybe not your normal fashion statement — could stop a hunter from mistaking you for the venison meatballs he plans to freeze and serve with cold Rolling Rock for the next Super Bowl game.
I totally get it that we’ve got to cull the ranks of the Island’s deer. Even though I’m an on-again, off-again vegetarian, a lifelong animal lover, and if you made me watch Bambi again, I’d cry just as hard when his mother gets shot as I did when I was five years old, still I get it about the hazards of a deer surplus: deer pick up ticks dosed with Lyme bacilli (or squigglies or cooties or whatchamallums), and too many Vineyarders have been infected with this awful disease for us not to take it seriously.
So we need the hunters. We just hope they need us — in other words, as they squint down their barrels, we pray they’re making sure they’re targeting a species of wildlife and not a human being in a brown suede jacket and tan corduroy pants. We’d also be thrilled to know that hunters are allowing themselves an extra contemplative moment to ascertain that they’re not about to exterminate someone’s pet.
So here’s a plea to hunters from us nonhunters whose startle reflex goes into spasm every time we hear a pop! bang! splat! from the forest. Before you venture out each morning to bag your share, please take care that you’ve enjoyed a good night’s sleep, have awakened without a hangover, that you’ve helped yourself to an ample breakfast, and you’re feeling at one with your fellow man or woman or his or her pets.
Otherwise, beloved hunters, thank you for helping us to stamp out the Lyme menace, a disease first developed in that site of all scourges, Connecticut. (I like to kid Connecticut).
Some things you absolutely must know: The holiday bazaar this Saturday, Dec. 6, at the Senior Center, to have been hosted by the Friends of the Oak Bluffs Library, has been cancelled! Don’t go there: you’ll be disappointed.
Hospice of Martha’s Vineyard will host its annual Handmade From the Heart Sale, with crafts, homemade goods, sweets, coffee, and all things sugar-plummy, on Dec. 13 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Dr. Daniel Fisher House in Edgartown.
Bouquets of red cyber roses go out to all the Oak Bluffs folk dancing in the 11th Annual Nutcracker Gala, to be held tomorrow and Sunday, each performance at 2 p.m. at the regional high school Performing Arts Center. The Oak Bluffs children who’ll be dancing are Avalon Weiland, Ava McGee, Annabelle Shevelin, Makenzie Luce, Elizabeth O’Brien and Courtney Minnehan. The participating adults are Betsi Convery-Luce, Mark Luce, and Brian Weiland. The event is brought to us by the Atlantic Coast Ballet Company, formerly known as Cape Cod Ballet, and the Martha’s Vineyard School of Ballet.
And don’t forget the Christmas Bazaar at the Oak Bluffs School, to take place tomorrow — Saturday, Dec. 6, starting at 10 a.m. See you there!