09/23/17 6:01am
09/23/2017 6:01 AM

A colleague of mine at this newspaper used to refer to the North Fork’s easternmost hamlet as The People’s Republic of Orient. The implication was that residents of Orient considered themselves and their hamlet separate and apart from the rest of Southold Town — a humorous suggestion that was, at the very least, partially reality-based. READ

08/22/15 6:00am
08/22/2015 6:00 AM

With the passing of “Focus on Nature” columnist Paul Stoutenburgh, the recent retirement of Louisa Hargrave’s “The Oeno Files” wine column and the previous semi-retirement of my own “The Observer” column, there’s just one columnist left standing when it comes to continuous longevity of service to this newspaper. (more…)

07/03/15 6:00am
07/03/2015 6:00 AM
John Williams. (Credit: Marty Heitner)

John Williams. (Credit: Marty Heitner)

If you’ve lived on the North Fork for a while, you probably have driven past it numerous times. It’s at the southwest corner of Front and Fourth streets in Greenport, and it’s currently known as The Captain’s Cottage in its most recent iteration as a rental cottage. But before that the little white frame building was the home of Williams & Company, the advertising and public relations firm, and, concurrently and somewhat improbably, the headquarters of the National SCRABBLE ® Association.  (more…)

05/20/15 7:00am
05/20/2015 7:00 AM
Lucharitos in Greenport. (Credit: Vera Chinese)

Lucharitos in Greenport. (Credit: Vera Chinese)

The premise was a simple one, I thought. A group of old (and getting older) friends would meet for dinner at the grand reopening of Lucharitos, the trendy Tex-Mex joint on Greenport’s lower Main Street, and then we’d go on a good, old-fashioned pub crawl around the village. You know: a cocktail here, a cocktail there, just like the old days. (more…)

04/25/15 12:00pm
04/25/2015 12:00 PM
Eastern Long Island Hospital's Paul Connor, president and CEO  and Dr. Anthony Mitarotondo, chief of radiology at the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro. (Credit: Courtesy Photo)

Eastern Long Island Hospital’s Paul Connor, president and CEO and Dr. Anthony Mitarotondo, chief of radiology at the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro. (Credit: Courtesy Photo)

This is to announce the periodic return, at least for the foreseeable future, of this column, along with the news that the former Joan Giger Walker and I hereby accept Eastern Long Island Hospital’s Fitness Challenge.

If you haven’t heard about it, the Challenge is an effort by the best little hospital in the land “to get people moving while using social media to encourage donations,” according to a recent article in this newspaper. “I am asking everyone to pledge to walk 10,000 steps (a day) in honor of the hospital’s 110-year anniversary,” ELIH CEO Paul Connor was quoted as saying in a press release. (more…)

03/15/15 10:00am
03/15/2015 10:00 AM

A confession: I have not been ice boating even once this winter on either Great Pond or Hallocks Bay. And that’s because I’ve been on the North Fork for less than a week between Christmas and today. And therein lies the challenge of writing this column every other week. How can I keep it local and relevant if the former Joan Giger Walker and I, in our so-called retirement years, are away from the North Fork for nearly half the year?

Short answer: I can’t.  (more…)

02/14/15 10:00am
02/14/2015 10:00 AM
George and John Giannaris at the renovated bar last year. (Credit: Carrie Miller, file)

George and John Giannaris at the renovated bar last year. (Credit: Carrie Miller, file)

Friday, Jan. 30, was an important date in the life of the North Fork. No, it wasn’t Groundhog Day, and it wasn’t the date of another Big Snow Storm. It was the seasonal reopening of the Hellenic Snack Bar in East Marion, and the former Joan Giger Walker and I were privileged to be there for the occasion.

(more…)

01/17/15 8:00am
01/17/2015 8:00 AM

This is an open letter to the person responsible for throwing empty Budweiser can after empty Budweiser can on the side of the otherwise pristine Narrow River Road in Orient. We will find you, my friend, if it is the last thing we do. In fact, we have a pretty good idea who you are, based on preliminary DNA samples taken from your saliva on the multitude of empty cans. We also have a blurry, motion-activated game camera image of the last three digits of your license plate. Your pickup truck appears to be blue. Or is it gray? (more…)