I don’t want to jinx the weather by saying what a wonderful winter we’re having. I also don’t like to blow my own horn (oh, yes I do!), but an item was recently faxed to me mentioning how the Gazette won top honors at the New England Newspaper & Press Association awards ceremony. First place went to the staff of our paper. Some of the judges’ comments were “an outstanding, fascinating weekly newspaper. Superb newspaper writing. It should be studied in journalism classes in community newspapers . . . very good selection of consistently significant news and interesting features . . . expertly developed local angles of national issues . . . the humor is there, too, as in the Rupert the Rooster story.” Well, good for us, but I still don’t see any humor in my poor Rupert’s story. While he is well and in a safe house I cannot reveal how much I miss him greatly in the ’hood. But I’ll take the bad with the good. Most of the anti-Rupert contingent are also gone from our ’hood this time of year. I’m expecting the usual division of cocktail parties again next summer as we have had throughout the Rupert issue.

As you know, I read widely and eclectically. I happened to pick up one of the few books in my home I never read, Oliver Wiswell by Kenneth Roberts. It is a fascinating novelization of the Revolutionary War. I quote from page 117: “George Leonard with his fleet of seven vessels had gone to Martha’s Vineyard and presented the British case so successfully that some of the towns of the island, particularly Edgartown and Chilmark, had unanimously voted to furnish the British with fresh provisions and fuel . . . ” Hmm. Tory pockets among us.

You might still be able to reserve a place setting for tomorrow night’s annual NAACP dinner at the Grill in Edgartown. Cocktails and a silent auction begin at 5:30 p.m., followed by dinner, awards and the usual fun. Call 508-696-5785.

The Vineyard Haven Public Library is pleased to present mime Robert Rivest on Thursday, Feb. 23 at 3:30 p.m. The comedic performance is free, of course, and focuses on “Literacy Alive.” It’s suitable for kids ages five and up. I’ll see you there.

The Martha’s Vineyard Center for Living hosts discounted taxi rides for seniors who need to go to Woods Hole to make appointments in Falmouth, Sandwich, Hyannis and Mashpee. Call director Leslie Clapp at the Center to book your spot.

Our condolences to the family and friends of Marilyn O’Callaghan, who has left us much too soon.

Anniversary bouquets go out to Lizanne Donegan and Brian Doherty on Feb. 19.

The birthday bandwagon pulls along Jill LaPiana and Colin Kennedy today. Feb. 18 shines on Charlotte Strople, Paul Howes and AJ Ewart. Feb. 19 is a party for Noreen Bettencourt, Chris Paffendorf, Michael James Moore, Bobby Gordineer and Justin Keough. Feb. 20 honors Laura Artru, Ben Davey and Michael Dowling. Feb. 21 is for Marie Boas, Nisa Kontje, Michael Cecilio and James Holenko. Thomas Dommerich Dunn shares Feb. 22 with George Washington. And on Feb. 23 David Gardella and Reid MacPherson take the cake. Many happy returns.