Friday, May 08, 2009

The Chestnut Hill Residents Association (formerly CHNU) Goes Public

The Chestnut Hill Residents Association held its inaugural meeting at the Chestnut Hill Library on May 6. It was great! Originally called Chestnut Hill Neighbors United, the 50 or so folks who assembled voted to change the name after initially laughing at well known Hiller George Spaeth's objection to the name as sounding "radical.'

George is funny in so many ways, the reason for so many doctor-as-God jokes, you hear one on George any time you have lunch with a Hiller over Sixty.

But the assembled, being a tolerant lot, decided to change the name anyway. Tolerant? A Hill organization being Tolerant? This is Already Radical.

The Proposed Organizational guidelines will be published on the CHRA website soon. Only a page and a half. Proposed, because members can propose changes or additions. Sounds weirdly democratic-easy even. Unlike the piloting of the Titanic-like CHCA, PEOPLE will actually be involved in the decision making process of the CHRA.

Wednesday Nights' meeting had a vibrancy rarely seen or heard in 19118, possibly due to the fact that NO gavels were present, and all the folks, with two notible exceptions, displayed a conspicuous LACK of that pervasive Hill quality, Entitlement. And everyone got to talk.
The two unsurprising exceptions were CHCA board members, Tom Hemphill, member of the Richard Snowden Financed Positively Chestnut Hill Slate, and Mark Keintz, the Uniquely Financially Unqualified CHCA treasurer.

These two seemed to be dropped into this meeting from a completely different movie, one where the CHCA mattered. They spent their time defending the CHCA, saying it had done GOOD THINGS.

Mark even continued his attack on the Local by saying it lost money last year. That Mark is a computer progammer by trade is a perfect analogy for his actions, for his personal programming is evident each time he speaks. His bytes are all aligned to continually grease the rails for a complete takeover of the Local's editorial department by detailing its financial woes. Doesn't make sense, does it? Their justifications never do. Remember Dina's "feminine intuition"? The reason she gave for ballot destruction? Minerva made her do it.

But in the middle of a meeting concentrating on organizing a viable organization for the betterment of Chestnut Hill run by people who LIVE THERE (more radicalism), Mark was still attacking the Local.

Mark, (for I know you read this), nobody cared what you had to say. You may as well been blaming the Spanish for blowing up the Battleship Maine. Because the people in that room, and the thousands who will join the free-to-join CHRA have, in the parlance used so often by the CHCA board when their hands were caught in cookie jar after cookie jar and were then unwilling to confront their own crimes, MOVED ON.

Tom and Mark may have sensed that by their presence. They both certainly have a record for hitching their political wagons to any group that might help them get into a position of what passes for power in 19118.

Yet for someone as Realpolitik as Tom, who pledged at the meeting that Pete would be fired over "My dead body," he was certainly willing to have his candidacy financed by Lord Snowden, who is known by my dead Cat as one who sees Pete's departure as job one for the "Positively Richard" slate. My guess is that Tom's role model in his political life is Arlen Spector. He's so busy checking which way the wind is blowing he never looks into anyone's eyes.

He did however, during his defense of the CHCA at a meeting where everyone knew better, rarely take his eyes off me. I guess I'm just that magnetic.

Tom, it's too late for you and me, just like it's too late for anyone to defend that group of power freaks. Besides, you've got enough problems within the board. I welcome tales of the Dina psycho faction and how they interact with the CHBA-Snowden Zoning Bulldozer.

In the only instance on record of me agreeing with the Lady-who-Munch was in the Matter of Snowden. Dina actually agreed with me on the Boy Kinks degree of despicability, and she blocked a vote on his apology once, with Carol (Lithium-isn't strong-enough) Cope's help.
It was our last civil conversation. But Greg Welsh used to say how insane Richard was, often, at his Bar, and that sure changed.

But Tom and Mark have not. After they had their say at the CHRA meeting, the new members simply moved on, with plans to organize a free-to-join, open Association with NO telephone Book of By-Laws to be selectively followed, No standing-interlocking-excuse-for-a-power-base-committees, No officers, No Suburban Busy Bodies trying to run a neighborhood they don't live in, No Corporate-Model-Question-Stifling-Meetings, and No Gavels. I can't even join, but I got to have my say, and so did Everyone Else.

The CHRA website will be set up soon to take residents' information and issue memberships.
There will be tables and sign up sheets at the Jenks School Flea Market on Saturday May 16.
There will be multiple sign up tables at the Garden Festival on the Avenue, Sunday, May 17.
Members can comment, propose action, and even vote by secured email or at the free and open monthly meetings

The residents of Chestnut Village, whose existence has been so conspicuously ignored by the CHCA for so long have shown great interest in joining the CHRA.

When I tell them what has been said about them by CHCA board members they will be even more interested.

9600 people live in 19118. The CHCA has 2046 members. No one will tell me how many live outside of Chestnut Hill.

If everyone fed up with the CHCA, the CHBA (which is now the same thing), Snowden, Sanjiv, Dina, and Some people being more equal than other people, would join the CHRA, its numbers would be so large that the City would not listen to CHCA on Zoning and on many other matters.
Just join and win. Democracy is always worth a try.

I hereby apologize to everyone at the CHRA meeting for not bringing cookies and punch. This will Never Happen Again. You were a nice group of people and you deseved refreshments. I'll do better next time.

Ed (I can't join but I like cookies and punch) Feldman

PS: My next Posts will be thematic: Good byes to all outgoing CHCA board members with previously unpublished factual tales of malfeasance and pathos. Ned, Stewie, Marie, Carol, all the usual suspects — I got a million of 'em.

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3 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds like a resounding success. Here's hoping that dividing off into a more homegenous group redirects energies toward more productive pursuits.

Fri May 08, 05:32:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Jeremiade said...

And compliments to Dr. Joseph Pizanno and Dr. Susan Pizanno for their part in getting this started.

Sat May 09, 12:00:00 PM EDT  
Blogger reverend chris said...

At an unofficial meeting the idea of a Chestnut Hill Business Owners Group was tossed around. Much like this group there would no dues and they already have some elected officials interested in backing them.

I was not at this meeting but heard about it Saturday evening. So it's just hearsay for now.

Wed May 13, 11:23:00 AM EDT  

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