Virginia Gazette Last Word for Aug. 23: Williamsburg charm; Sports jargon; Pull over!

Unsightly roadsides

"I notice in the Last Word that more residents and business owners are upset by VDOT's grass cutting practices. I agree that it's a mess all over James City County and surrounding areas, plus the entry roads. Some areas are maintained by James City, some by VDOT and some by York County, but all are generally a mess. For the amount of taxes we pay to James City and to the state, plus the focal point of the area being a destination for tourists, one would thing the grass on our roadways could be cut more often, especially in Summer. In addition, the trash and dead animals could be removed within one or two days. Whom do we contact to complain louder?"

Williamsburg charm

"The writer who made a blanket statement about small town education in Tennessee is sadly ignorant. We have two grown sons who graduated from schools in Hendersonville, Tennessee. Each has a masters degree from Kellogg in Chicago and are gainfully employed with Fortune 500 companies. Best to check facts before making such harsh assumptions. Those of us who relocated here from Tennessee find your stereotype beyond offensive."

"Williamsburg, including the Historic Area, is losing its charm. Times change, but all changes should be mindful of the historic character that draws many of us to the area. As a person from Maryland whose heart is in Williamsburg but cannot get my wife to move, we come down at least quarterly to visit. Over the years we have seen changes and most have not been positive. First, the Historic Area really looks to be suffering from a lack of maintenance and upkeep. It seems the foundation is much more attuned to adding additional buildings than they are in maintaining what they have. Richmond Road is also losing its allure. Frankly if one wants to eat at Applebee's or Chipotle you can do that in one's own backyard."

Blocking calls

"Several years ago I purchased a Digitone Call Blocker from an Internet site for about $75. It is a great device and also acts as a caller ID. You can manually block any calls by pressing one button at the time of the call, or you can key in using your phone to block all calls from Area codes such as 800,844,866, etc. You can also create a individual invite list of any 800 numbers you want to receive. Your phone will not ring as this device is plugged in between the phone jack and the phone. Best purchase I ever made."

"I know how to block my calls, but I have three that continue to come through. Can someone out there help me block them? I've even reported it to the Federal Trade Commission."

Sports jargon

"In the Aug: 20 sports section of The Virginia Gazette, an article refers to the 'new weapons' and 'serious firepower' when reporting on a recent Lafayette football scrimmage. I wonder what would happen to the students if they were overheard talking about 'new weapons' and 'some serious firepower?'"

Kingsmill

"Some would like to see Kingsmill become 'Hong Kong on the James', but many would say that enough is enough."

Pull over!

"I was driving eastbound on Monticello Avenue with a car behind me, and an ambulance behind her lights flashing, horn blowing. I pulled over around Braemar, but the young lady behind me keeps going. Passes me with an ambulance right on her tail. She finally pulls over in the right turn lane at Greensprings Plantation Road. What was she thinking, or did she not realize that you have to give way to emergency vehicles? Unbelievable!"

Honey or not

"To the person upset about being called 'honey' or 'sugar:' Be thankful, it's a compliment. Remember, you are in the south. Embrace it, you could be called worse things."

"To the person offended by being referred to as 'sugar:' You're living in the south now, so deal with it. To paraphrase what the late James City supervisor Stewart Taylor was fond of saying: 'I-95 goes in both directions. Look in the rearview mirror and we'll be waving goodbye.'"

"I don't understand. Someone is treating you kindly and using a friendly term or term of endearment to another human being and we complain. If the person had ignored you, you would have complained. I'm one that calls people 'Sweetie.' We just need to lighten up. Just be pleased that someone was treating you kindly."

Queen Anne's Lace

"Seeing the name of the wildflower Queen Anne's Lace in the Last Word, inspired me to submit the following: We were visiting friends in England and I commented on a field of 'Queen Anne's Lace' and received the retort, 'Queen Anne's Lace? Oh you Americans are so over romantic. That's just cow parsley.'"