Last Word on bicycle safety, Sept. 6

Bicycle safety

I am distressed by the number of bare-headed bike riders I encounter on the Virginia Capital Trail. As the survivor of a low-speed spill on a quiet country road that cracked my helmet and left me unconscious for more than an hour, I can testify that neither speed nor the presence of motor vehicles is necessary for a bike rider to suffer severe injury to an unprotected head. I realize that, unlike seat belts for motor vehicle drivers, wearing a helmet is optional for adult bicycle riders, but I cannot urge more strongly that those riders opt to do so.

Looking for …

I am an elementary teacher in need of LEGOs to be used in my classroom. If you have LEGOs you no longer want or use, I would love to have them for my students. We will put them to good use. Please call 564-0868. If no answer, please leave a message. Thank you for your generosity.

Looking for American Girl Doll clothing and accessories as a new collector. Has anyone's child outgrown the use of hers? Thank you. My number is 253-2550.

I have recently acquired several documents from my Czech and Romanian ancestors written in one of those languages, probably Czech. A couple of letters, some birth certificates, etc. Would like to find someone willing to translate these for me. If interested, please contact me at 258-7740. Thank you.

Does anybody know where Loan has gone? She was at New York Nails. Does anybody know where she’s working now? Thank you.

Reply to the person asking who will take a collection of records. Try American Oldies, 14333 Warwick Blvd., Newport News, 757-877-6877.

I lost a silver bracelet at the Harris Teeter in Lightfoot on Aug. 30. Quite sentimental. Please call me at 757-225-2694 if you find it. Thank you.

I’m trying to find out if there are any Parkour/Freerunning areas/gyms around Williamsburg, or anyone out there that does this sport, as I need someone to train with/find a place to train. Please contact me at 757-903-1219. Thank you.

In response to the person looking for someone to do motorcycle servicing in Williamsburg: Call or text 757-592-9039. I am a certified mechanic. Leave your name, number, year/make/model of your bike and what you want done. Thank you.

To the lady seeking current contact information for Dr. Miles-Thomas: She can be reached at 757-457-5100. She is now affiliated with Urology of Virginia over at the Geddy Center at Sentara Hospital complex, and I understand is in Williamsburg certain days.

I’m looking for somebody in the Williamsburg area who does facials. I have a problem with blackheads. Please leave your number in the paper. Thank you.

Medical marijuana

My sister is undergoing chemotherapy and experiencing the debilitating side effects of extreme nausea and vomiting. I am heartbroken that medical marijuana is not available for her. Please support legislators who will vote for the controlled use of marijuana to alleviate suffering.

Freebies

Regarding the last issue, “No free feebies,” the bag of toothpaste, toothbrush, dental floss and mouthwash received at the end of your dental appointment is actually free. I worked for a dentist for a number of years and the manufacturers of these items send large boxes of these items free to the dentists. This is the best source of advertising for the manufacturers. Thank you.

To the commentor who submitted an article in the Last Word that the dentist pays for the sample toothpaste and toothbrushes and dental floss: They are 100 percent wrong. These are promotional items put out by companies who manufacture those items, to get you to buy that kind of toothpaste or dental floss or toothbrush. Good day.

After Harvey

A lesson to be learned from coastal Texas and Harvey for Tidewater Virginians: Don’t allow developers to have their way.

Someone once said there aren't any atheists in a foxhole. There aren't any climate change deniers sitting on their roofs in Houston, either. Houston has the worst air pollution in North America and God cleansed it in seven days.

It would be wonderful if someone in Williamsburg has a large truck so supplies could be taken to the Houston area, such as plenty of water and canned goods for those in need. If someone out there has a truck and is willing to do it, perhaps parking it at Monticello Marketplace or near the Walmart grocery store, I’m sure the community would fill the truck up in no time at all. Thank you.

Saving nature

While driving on Ironbound Road Monday, I witnessed something very heartwarming. A woman stopped her vehicle in the oncoming lane and a teenage girl got out to lift and carry a turtle to safety from in front of their car to the side of the road. The turtle was saved because of their quick thinking and compassion. Well done, ladies!

Williamsburg taxes

A reader had an idea to only tip on the cost of the meal rather than the entire bill. Wonderful, let's stiff the hard working servers hoping they will quit in hopes of getting the owners more vocal in opposing the tax. Worst idea ever.

Catching air

To the person catching air on the Ford's Colony Speed bumps: Me too, and it was awesome.

Food trucks

In a recent article, Readers Digest insists that for summer enjoyment, folks should have the relaxed fun of dining from the current iteration of food trucks and their eclectic fare. Try a few. You may be pleasantly surprised. I cruise most Saturday afternoons to find favorites as well as new treats. It's fun meandering with occasional “gourmet” surprises. One recently offered duck confit — more elevated fare than any served by any brick-and-mortar joint around here.

School lunch help

As parents of young children just headed back to school, don't forget about lunch preparations as well. A few tips for helping your little ones as they eat their packed lunches: partially or totally peel oranges or tangerines, snip the corner of cracker packs and granola bars for easier opening, cut the stem off bananas, pack a napkin, spoon, straw (if needed) — this cuts down on having to wait in the lunch lines to get these items. Lunch rooms always have adult monitors, but some children are shy about asking for help and the ratio of children to monitors is pretty high, so it might take a while to get to everyone who needs help. Thanks for the many things you do to make life a little simpler for your children — they will appreciate your efforts.

Building monuments

Many claim that most Civil War monuments were erected during two peak periods (1910-1915 and 1960-1965) to bolster Jim Crow laws and counter the Civil Rights movement. But, simple arithmetic shows that those periods correspond with the 50th and 100th anniversaries of Civil War battles. Remembrances that might naturally lead to building monuments and memorials. I don't claim to know for certain, but I'd bet that most were built for this reason and not the former.

Retiring smile

Here we go again. It’s obviously the same person complaining about “Retired in Williamsburg” for the umpteenth time. Please don’t drop that feature from The Gazette just because one person has no sense of humor. “Retired in Williamsburg” usually puts a smile on my face, but the complainer probably doesn’t know what it feels like to smile.

Recommended

Kudos to Charles White of James Pest Control (229-3370) who came to our home yesterday to spray for ants. He was very thorough and helpful, even moving our stove and refrigerator to spray behind them. He left them pulled out when he went to spray outside, and I was able to clean the very dirty floor behind the stove and refrigerator. Thank you, Charles. I so appreciated your kindness.

We have a wonderful service here in Williamsburg. Someone who can transfer treasured family pictures and movies to DVD or flash drive. I had important family movies on 8mm film and VHS tape. With his knowledge and talents, he organized and added music by my requests. I really tested his talents. He understands how important these memories are and takes extra care with them. His name is Tom Bigford, tbigford@cox.net, 757 645-7004.

Road worries

On Monticello Avenue where Big Lots used to be, they have that light on, blink yellow and red coming out of the lot. You cannot get out of that lot to go left toward Richmond Road. The traffic won’t let you out and you have to go down the other way. Why did they change the light from green to red? You got one side that’s still operating. I know they don’t want you to worry about the parking lot, but it’s a mistake. They’re impeding traffic instead of helping it.

Disappointing finale

For those of us who love the Merchant Square concerts, the final one was a big disappointment. We made sure we attended the Brass Ensemble because of the sound and talent. But not this time. Too low key for a finale performance. And for the parents of the kids who jump around in front of the bandstand: if you think your kids are cute, you are the only ones.

Thank you

Many thanks to Cathy at the Monticello Post Office for making an extra effort to help a Chinese student here on a H1-J work visa in resolving a mail order delivery problem. The student had ordered online, which resulted in a big problem locating it, as the Williamsburg Post Office could not help the student. Cathy took time to call the W&M post office to finally locate the package. We helped drive the student to W&M Student Center, get her package and back to her hotel room. The student, here for the summer, uses WATA to go to work, having to transfer once, and also works a second job near her hotel to defray living expenses.

I want to extend my heartfelt thanks to the person who found my lost credit card and turned it in to the front desk at Home Depot.

On a rainy, miserably wet Tuesday, my grandson (age 11) and I pulled into the drive thru at Taco Bell on John Tyler Highway. After waiting for several cars ahead of us, we ordered and proceeded to pay. “You owe nothing,” the window worker said. “The car ahead of you paid your bill.” I was stunned. Thanks to the red car ahead of us. You practiced “paying it forward,” you brightened our day and you taught my grandson a valuable lesson. We then “passed it on” to the car behind us — and we left smiling and feeling good that hospitality and unexpected good will still exists.

Outdoors help

Can someone tell me what to do with Iris’ after they bloom and how to get them ready for fall/winter. Can you split them? Should you? Do you cut the leaves or not?

Who is responsible for clearing overhanging trees and cutting the grass on the sidewalk on Hubbard Lane in York County from Colonial Avenue to the cut-through road to James York Plaza? It looks awful. Not sure if it is the county or VDOT.

Local history

Tidewater Virginia Historical Society: I'm really looking forward to this year's lectures and trips to historic sites in our area. Find out what you're missing at www.TV-HS.org.

Check-out lines

To those complaining about long check-out lines and self-service machines: It’s not because of stores being cheap, it’s because they can’t find people who are willing to work. Also, it doesn’t help when customers feel they need to have a conversation with the cashiers. Food shopping isn’t a social event.

Up in Washington

Network news reports the Secret Service is overwhelmed financially due to protecting President Trump's extended family and his extensive travel and may not be able to pay overtime required. Trump was very critical of previous presidents for frequent vacations and golf games. In his first eight months in office, he has traveled abroad several times and has spent virtually every weekend at his New Jersey golf club or Palm Beach resort in Florida. Why not stay at the White House, a historic American treasure, some weekends even if he considers it "a real dump"? Just imagine what he thinks of Camp David.

I'm not sure anyone on Fox News is aware that everyone who served in the allied forces in World War II was Antifa, or anti-fascist and anti-Nazi.

Given that the president we have in the White House today despises everything that President Barack Obama did, if President Obama had issued a decree praising heterosexual marriage, Donald Trump would issue a presidential edict banning it.

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