EXPLAINING THE SNOW: Its Tuesday
morning (1/25) with 4"of snow on the ground; more expected.
I can explain; its sort of my fault.
It was the early 90s. Four years in a row I had to brave it in
heavy snow from home to the office a normal half an hour trip. The snow doubled,
tripled and occasionally increased the time by incredible multiples. I was once on the
road traveling for seven hours to go the 15 miles to my home. Insane!
In 91 I drove a Q45, which slipped and slid on ice on the
slightest of inclines causing me on several occasions to turn around and seek less hilly
paths out of my neighborhood. That was the worst.
Ive driven them all. VW Bugs and Rabbits, a Chevy, a Mazda RX7, a
Porsche 924S, the Jaguar was wonderful. Drove em all; loved em all . . . but
the snow always caused problems. I made the sensible decision and in the middle 96,
I got myself a Jeep a 4-wheel drive Grand Cherokee workhorse.
It worked! Since owning the Jeep, there has not been a significant snow
accumulation in the area. I never had problems in the winter while driving the Jeep. There
was just no real snow for the past 3 winters.
The Jeep really worked and I was really happy.
This past weekend, in celebration of my sons 21st birthday and
the fact that he was in college in cold and snowy Keene, New Hampshire, I gave my
invincible Jeep to him Happy Birthday Lee. (Actually his birthday is Feb. 7 and you
can email him wishes at QuicLee@AOL.com).
Last night, Monday after the most pleasant automobile purchase
experience one can imagine maybe more on that in a future column (thanx, JoAnn at
BMW of Bayside) I picked up a brand sparkling new BMW X5. Now, like a Jeep,
its a 4-wheel drive SUV (only BMW insists on SAV Sports Activity Vehicle
instead of Utility). As a matter of fact, it is a dream car (or truck if you want to be
more accurate). It can go anywhere on road; off road; in the snow; on the ice.
Its fast, powerful, super luxurious and handles like a car and has cargo space that
appears to be slightly larger than the Jeep. Its got amenities Ill never even
use. You can have air conditioned air on your face, a heated car and seat, with hot air on
your feet while the passenger has a different combination of temperatures on each part of
the their body. Cool? Its hot! And remember, it has 4-wheel drive too.
Who could ask for anything more?
It seems to lack only one amazing attribute that the Jeep had. It
doesnt stop the snow. Tuesday was the first time since I got the Jeep in 96
that there was a real snow accumulation in the metro area. Tuesday was the first day I was
driving the X5.
Now Lee will be driving it in New Hampshire. I have a feeling that they
maybe in for some real bad ski seasons.
Happy Birthday Lee!
2000 POLITICS: Anticipate another humdrum year for local politics.
One, maybe two races in the Primary season and little to speak of in a General election
where the Senate race will not only out-shadow the local contests, but the Presidential
race as well. Hmmmm!
McCAFFREY: A bit of clarity may be coming to the most hotly
contested local political race of the year 2000 election cycle. Ever since Tom Manton
handed his Congressional seat to Joe Crowley by timing his withdrawal from the race so as
to avoid any contest, youve been hearing about potential challenges to frosh
Crowley. The center of the opposition rests with a threesome of elected officials:
Councilmen John Sabini, Walter McCaffrey and Assmeblywoman Kathy Nolan. The troika has
agreed to combine forces and back one of them in a primary challenge against Crowley (and
We hear the speculation is over. Walter McCaffrey has hired a
fundraiser, interviewed media consultants and lined up staff to make a run for Congress.
Sources inside the McCaffrey camp have confirmed the meetings,
interviews and plans of the politically astute McCaffrey. Although no announcement is
expected at this time, we anticipate an immediate launch of a professional fundraising
In order for McCaffrey to be competiutive against an incumbent Crowley,
hell need to raise and spend more than a half a million dollars. Our sources tell us
the fundraising consultant will begin immediately as McCaffrey for Congress 2000 makes
ready to launch.
THOUGHT: If pro is opposite of con, then what is the opposite of
CROWLEY: We breakfasted with the amiable freshman Congressman at
our office last week.
The towering Crowley was not eating bread another victim of a
low carb diet. It seems Crowley, his brother, his chief of staff Frank Bols, Tom Manton,
and Dem attorneys Mike Reich, and Gerry Sweeny are all involved in an extended
weight loss wager. At a recent event we broke bread with Manton and Sweeny. Only neither
of them did; didnt drink either. As a matter of fact, Manton was as thin as
weve ever seen him and Sweeny, still wanting to lose weight had wasted away to half
the man he used to be picking up significant money by losing the most and winning.
Mantons secret: soup for lunch.
Back to Crowley. He seemed unfazed as the target of the west Queens
threesome and avoided speculation as to who if any he would have to face in a primary. Joe
it seems is prepared to fight it out at the voting booth but is put off by the personal
and distasteful treatment he has received by one of his potential opponents. Crowley was
confident, prepared and acted unbeatable.
In our judgement, his assessment at this time sems to be accurate.
Crowley biggest fight will likely come when he struggles to survive a
reapportionment election with new lines and one less downstate seat.
For now, take Crowley over McCaffrey by 8 points (54% to 46%).
YOGI BERRA: "Its tough to make predictions, especially about
MARSHALL: Remember where you read it. Helen Marshall, who is term
limited out of the Council in 2001 is about to join the packed field of candidates in a
quest for the Queens Borough Presidency.
We remember Helen from the 60s when she was PTA President at PS
143 in Corona (my dad was the school principal). The senior Dem District Leader, served in
the Assembly and the Council and appears to be the consensus candidate of the African
American community. Marshall expects the support of most of the Boroughs black
district leaders and southeast Queens powerhouse, former Congressman, Reverend Floyd
Marshall is a credible candidate whose chances will be greatly
bolstered with multiple white candidates in the race. To date the following Dems are
mentioned: Carol Gresser, Karen Koslowitz, Sheldon Leffler, Anthony Seminario, Audrey
Pfeffer, Melinda Katz.
By any math, in a Democratic Primary with two or three whites
candidates, Helen can be considered a favorite.
MILLIONMOMMARCH.COM: Look out Washington, the moms are
coming. Mothers Day, May 14, 2000, a nonpartisan gang of grandmothers, mothers,
aunts and sisters will decend on the nations Capital to mobilize for common sense
gun control. To get lend support or get involved: www.millionmommarch.com.
Toll free: 888-989-MOMS; email: email@example.com.
LIPP SERVICE: Former Tribune editor Marty Lipp writes in
reaction to our piece on one of his Trib predessors, Mitch Albom and his super best
selling book "Tuesdays With Morrie." We indicated that even though Marty Lipp
was a better writer, and others equally or more gifted, Alboms was able to build his
success on hard work and commitment.
Lipp writes: "Thanks for the kind words, though Id rather
his royalty checks.....why didnt any of my old teachers develop debilitating
diseases?! I certainly wished it upon them often enough."
OLYMPIC TARNISH: Remember Canadian Ben Johnson and his 1988 Olympic
100 meter dash disqualification after a banned substance was revealed by a blood test? You
know, the guy that put Carl Lewis on the map big time. Ben Johnsons appeal to
compete again was denied in August 1999 by the IAAF. Then, at the end of last year, he
again tested positive for a banned substance. Johnson was recently hired as a personal
trainer to Libyan president Moahmar Khadaffis son.
CLASSFIED AD: The phone rang in the obituary department of the
"How much does it cost to have an obituary printed"? asked a
"Its five dollars a word, maam," the clerk replied politely.
"Fine," said the woman after a moment. "Got a pencil?"
"Got some paper?"
"Okay, write this down: Cohen dead."
"Thats all?" asked the clerk disbelievingly.
"Im sorry maam, I should have told you - theres a five word
"Yes, you shouldve," snapped the woman. Now let me think a minute... okay,
got a pencil?"
"Got some paper?"
Okay, here goes: Cohen dead. Cadillac for Sale."
Michael Nussbaum contributed to this column.