Pandering to illegals

The following letter was sent to Council Member Elizabeth Crowley in which the Juniper Berry was copied.

Dear Councilwoman Crowley,
As a retired NYS parole officer I found your defense of (co-sponsoring and) voting for Intro 656 protecting illegal criminals insulting. I can’t imagine what qualifies you to chair a Criminal Justice Committee.

Justifying releasing illegals back to the community after they leave Rikers instead of holding them on federal immigration detainers is really tantamount to your turning your back on the quality of life of your constituents. It puts you in the league of a hack doing anything to assure reelection by pandering to immigrant communities.

No, I’m not in your district, I live in Howard Beach. But as a regular contributor of “Letters to the Editor” my writings are viewed by YOUR constituents. COMET and JPCA have criticized you on the aforementioned issue. You exhibit no insight into crime, criminality or human behavior as it relates to crime. Your feigned concern on the cost of incarceration of these people hasn’t been lost on what we spend on their medical care, has it?
I will remind you and your voters every time an illegal released from custody is engaged in criminal behavior, and how you voted to facilitate that happening.

John T. Urban
Howard Beach

no way to treat heroes

To the Editor:
Twice a month, volunteers from the Southeast District Veterans’ Committee of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks join me at the St Albans V.A. Hospital (officially known as the New York Harbor Health Care System) to provide the Disabled Veterans at the Community Living Center with two different events: a Breakfast Social one Thursday morning each month and a Bingo Social one Monday evening per month.

Several elevators at the St Albans V.A. Hospital have been broken for many months so that some of the wheelchair-bound Veterans are unable to attend our socials or other community events. Additionally, it has been three years since the auditorium was closed down due to the electrical wiring needing replacement and structural damage to one of the walls requiring repair.

Not a very fair way to treat our Heroes, some of whom have literally given an arm, a leg, and even more for their country.
This, at a time when our government recently spent $750,000 to build a soccer field made of synthetic turf to provide recreation for the prisoners at the Guantanamo Bay (GTMO) Detention Camp, many of whom have openly vowed to destroy the United States and its citizens.

If you have a chance, please go to visit the Veterans at St Albans. Take a look at the conditions there. I’m sure you will find that the atmosphere at St Albans is a far cry from the country- club-like accommodations at GTMO.

After your visit, please let your elected officials know that your tax dollars need to be spent more prudently, to provide at least a modicum of care and comfort for our Honored Disabled Veterans, who sacrificed so much in order to preserve our right to live in freedom and peace.
In the meantime, the Elks’ Motto remains in force: “So long as there are Veterans in our hospitals, the Benevolent and Protective Order of the Elks will never forget them.”

Respectfully submitted,
Richard Muniak
Southeast District Veterans’ Committee of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks

Bites around the Big Apple

Dear Lorraine Sciulli
We spoke on Eliot Avenue recently about my newly published book, “Bites Around the Big Apple.” I just wanted to drop this letter off to you so you might mention my book in the Juniper Berry sometime since I was your neighbor for 40 years and once was published in your publication (1992) under “letters.”
My text is about surf fishing for striped bass, bluefish and weakfish with fishing lures at night around the five boroughs' beaches, jetties, inlets, back bays and off bridges in NYC. Details in my book like fishing places and what reels/rods to use, come from 45 years of fishing experience around places that are still safe to fish at during the night from March to December. I enclose the back cover of my book for further information about my text.

My book is obtainable by computer from Dorrance/my Publisher to area residents who read the Juniper Berry like I do regularly. Keep up the great work, Lorraine. I'll be watching.

Sincerely yours,
Vincent Badame

PS – Book price is $16.00/Electronic book price is $11.00. Anyone interested in pursuing information about “Bites Around the Big Apple,” can call Vincent Badame at 718 779 6860 after 4pm.


Dear Editor:
Some people plant ground cover in their tree pit thereby keeping the tree pit neat and avoiding the need to weed the area. Fences are installed around their tree pits to prevent dogs from urinating and defecating around the tree thereby preventing health hazards and damage to any ground cover. If dog walkers would curb their dogs fences would not be necessary.

Elizabeth Moss

Berry Huge

To Robert Holden:
Re: Biondo Racing
Nice article you did on us. It came out great, I've been getting a ton of calls and e-mails. The (Juniper Berry) has a huge following.

Sal Biondo
Middle Village

House of Horrors

To the Editor:
I am trying to reach out for help with a solution to the contaminated house next door to me which is deserted, and infested with rats and garbage. The owners of the house, who no longer live there, are a senior mother who has been in a nursing home for over 6 years and the son she left behind who is mentally disturbed and disabled and who has disappeared since the end of 2010.

We believe there is a guardian lawyer who is handling the welfare of the son who refuses to return my calls and the calls of all the neighbors who try to reach him. Please, I need your help. My neighbors and I have our homes attached on both sides of the house and we can no longer sit on our porches or open our windows because there are rats running across the yard. The exterminator service which we pay for cannot solve the problem due to this locked deserted filthy house next door to us. We tried to reach the Health Dept the Sanitation the Social Services and Ms. Crowley's office. No one responded or was able to solve our problem. I write to you hoping for a response and I appreciate your assistance and involvement in this situation. Thank you,

Nesrein Megally
Middle Village


To the Editor:
This is a message to the people in the vicinity of 77 Place between Eliot Ave and Caldwell Ave. It would be in your best interest and the interest of other people in the area to learn how to park your cars with CONSIDERATION for other people. Here are a few suggestions (and be advised, a suggestion is a subtle DIRECTION!)
A) If you have a driveway, USE it (Or move out)
B) Make sure and take the time to park in a way that allows, comfortably, for as many cars to fit.
C) If you are parking to take the Manhattan buses, move closer to the area, or find another way to get to work. Why should people who live here lose spots from 8:30 in the morning till 6:00 at night?
D) Any questions about A, B, C please refer to the “COMMON SENSE AND CONSIDERATION” handbook. You can find it in your upbringing and if not, MOVE AWAY from here.

James Phelan
Middle Village

Aircraft Noise

To the Editor,
It is an unfortunate and strange coincidence that as I read William Powers excellent and eye opening article on living with airplanes that within hours of finishing it I was again reminded of how incredibly noisy it's getting here in Middle Village. I've been living here many years and lately it does seem that every 90 seconds an enormous jet flies so low and close to us it’s difficult to carry on a conversation, hear or even concentrate. The flights are seemingly endless and the risks to our health and quality of life great. One of the remarkable things about living in Middle Village is the serenity and peace one can experience even while living a few miles from one of the most populated and loud cities on the planet. This too seems under siege, yet we have been living in the jet age for many years so why has the noise increased and grown at such an alarming rate lately? I don't see or understand why we as residents of this area should have to be subservient to the wants or needs of the airline industry or the FAA. I am unaware of the person or committee that has steered these large jets over our precious space lately but I'd sure like to know who they are. As you are aware, we pay some of the highest property taxes for relatively small homes and we do so for the privilege of living here in relative peace and quiet, in addition to which we have some of the highest income and sales taxes in the nation and yet jets are descending on us seemingly closer to our roofs each week with their incredible noise and pollution like a plague of locusts.

It is time to put our collective minds together and focus on this problem now, not later, it may be too late then, better to determine who is responsible for the flight path changes and challenge this low flying scourge immediately and make sure the powers that collect our hard earned taxes and supposedly speak for us send these jets' flight paths back over the ocean where they belong. Their present flight path this close to us is simply unacceptable and we must let our elected officials know this. If we do nothing, shrug our shoulders and accept it I guarantee it will get worse until it seems we are living in an extension of LaGuardia Airport. I have no idea why this seemingly new airplane flight path and the corresponding noise and pollution seems to have happened so quickly but I can tell you it is the biggest impediment to peace and quiet I have ever experienced here in Middle Village and now my most relevant complaint.

Mark Grille
Middle Village

Metro Ave. Mess

To the Editor:
I read on the TOPIX site, an article titled “Middle Village event this Saturday.” Wondered if anyone read it. It is interesting and thought if anyone can address these issues it would be Bob Holden for sure.

I do agree with the article though, the Avenue is a mess especially on the weekends. The garbage pails on Friday night are filled, and by Saturday morning they are all overfilled with some areas full of garbage on the ground. It is not a nice site for the Community and I agree with that. The other item mentioned in the article is the ongoing and growing vandalism, graffiti, dropping of garbage on lawns of properties on the corner of 74 Street and Juniper Boulevard South going up to Metropolitan Avenue.

The park & improvements are nice but out of area people dump garbage, show no respect for people’s properties, steal things in front of the houses and from their yards. Please do something. I know you all are busy but if I do not read, see, or hear anything being done, within 30 days, then I will go to Crowley, and Addabbo's offices.
Thank you!

Vincent Batyr
Middle Village

fairyland memories

To the Editor:
Fairyland – In the 50's my Dad took my Cousin and me to Fairyland. I found your article and, as you can imagine, I hadn't even remembered where Fairyland was. It was probably around 1953 or so when we went there. I was born in 1948. I have photos of us at Fairyland – would you like me to send them? I posted your article and my photos on my facebook page as well. Great memories and a great story that I knew nothing of. I even lived in Queens in Rego Park right near the Queens mall for years and never knew it was the original site of Fairyland!!! Small world. Oh – we lived in Brooklyn back in the day so going to Queens was a real “trip”. Thanks again and if you have photos I'd love to see them, or if you know where to find photos please let me know.

Joy Obade

Dear Lorraine:
Thank you ever so much for mailing a copy of the Juniper Berry featuring the article on “Fairyland.” These memories are “priceless!” God bless.

Gratefully yours,
Carol A. Marano

School Days

Dear Editor:
You have a great publication here. Keep it as it is!
Thank Mr. Henry for all the memories from Anna Marie to “73.” I attended JHS 73 about seven years before Mr. Henry. I can attest to the negative “learning environment” he experienced. It was already entrenched when I graduated in 1960. His reminiscences connected with me on a number of levels. The dentist, ice cream man, baseball cards, Halloween and sledding on a city street to name just a few. I was surprised that corporal punishment was still being condoned in the public schools as late as 1970. Yes, JHS 73 was a challenge, but we survived it.

William Thom
Woodbridge, Virginia

Bummed out by Close out

Dear Editor:
Hello, I am a true Middle Village person. I was born and raised on the Eliot Avenue side of Middle Village. Then I married my husband who was born and raised on the Metropolitan Avenue side of Middle Village. I love my community and my neighbors. I frequent Metropolitan Ave. stores every day. I go to Metropolitan Avenue every day to pick up groceries from C Town and fruits & vegetables from Columbo. Everyone knows me. I stop into Close Out Paradise. BIG MISTAKE!

My first mistake was buying anything electronic from Close Out Paradise. Anything I buy from the store is broken or defective. I keep my receipts and boxes, because I wasn't born yesterday. I know sometimes things need to be returned. In this store, the manager does not offer money back even if you have your receipt in hand, and the original box for the product. After a few too many times, I learned my lesson, and I will not shop there. The manager is the son of the owner, and is always disrespectful to his elders. He is the age of my daughters, I could be his mother, but he has zero respect for me. I consider my purchases (A light-up Christmas tree that when plugged in the store worked, but stopped lighting up a day later, and Christmas lights that worked in the store, but not more than a day after bringing them home) a loss, the manager allows me to exchange for other purchases, so I chose paper products hoping they won't disappoint. Needless to say, I do not shop in Close Out Paradise for anything other than lifesaver candies. Let it be known that there are cashiers that are nice in there, but the manager is obnoxious.

Last week, I saw an elderly woman in the bank (Chase) and she explained to the tellers and me that she fell in front of Close Out Paradise, because they left rope on the floor. She said she is 83 years old and needed to sit down. The people in Chase, as usual, were so attentive and kind to her. I spoke with her while she sat. She is also a Middle Village person.

She decided to go into Close Out Paradise to talk to tell them that they need to be more careful with things they leave out on the street. As she explained to the cashier (I joined her) the manager came over and sarcastically asked “What do you want me to do, kiss your boo-boo?” I was APPALLED! This Middle Village neighbor of mine who is 83 years old and told me her name is Lucy did not get treated with respect. I do not know who to tell this to, so I am coming to you Juniper Berry. I have also witnessed this manager tell women who were passing our neighborhood that he wouldn't honor their receipts and they had to do an exchange.

This store is giving our neighborhood a bad name. Something needs to be done. Next time you walk into Close Out Paradise and think you are making a nice purchase, remember that keeping your receipt means NOTHING and that if you need to speak to the manager he will berate you.

Ella Parnell
Middle Village

Storm Story

Dear Editor
On 9/16/10 our house on 84th Street received a direct hit from that horrendous storm. We lost half our roof, received much water damage and had to relocate for almost 6 months while the house was being repaired. The heavy copper gutter (along with some roofing) was ripped from the back of our house. It landed in the tree in front of our property and the rest of the roof landed on our neighbors front lawns across the street.

Prior to the storm, the tree was already having root issues. Although the tree is still standing, the storm exacerbated the problem with the sidewalk. Other sidewalks in the area were repaired (some not even caused by the storm), but not ours.

After numerous visits and letters to Elizabeth Crowley's office, the sidewalk was finally repaired today (5/24/12).

I always look forward to my copy of the Berry. Keep up the good work for our community and keeping it a wonderful place to live and be proud of.

June Mooney
Middle Village