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Joe McQuaid's Publisher's Notebook: Leaf peeping at the State House

By JOE McQUAID
October 01. 2017 9:42PM


IMPORTANT EVENTS occurred in New Hampshire last week.

At the State House, considerable angst was raised when a lady Democrat discovered that the portrait of the state’s first elected female governor was being blocked by a tree.

Clearly this was a direct snub against women by none other than Gov. Chris Sununu, even though the latter is married to a woman, has several sisters, and claims kinship to his mom, Nancy Sununu.

It was probably done, the theory went, because Gov. Jeanne Shaheen had defeated Gov. Sununu’s big brother, John, for the U.S. Senate. Oh, and because the portraits of the most recent governors are displayed in the reception room adjacent to the governor’s office, they are under his control.

The governor’s office claimed, rather lamely, that the tree (a young birch) was a gift and it could only be displayed in that exact spot and it happened to be in front of the Shaheen portrait because, chronologically, that’s where she falls. Only that was untrue. Besides, she is much better looking than any of her male counterparts.

Her fans are said to have told the governor, “get that son of a birch out of here.” It was done, inspiring the late poet Joyce Kilmer to submit the following.



I think that I shall never see,

a poem lovely as a tree.

Except but one. It caused the scene

that hid the portrait of Jeanne Shaheen.



Meanwhile, the Deerfield Fair, which ended Sunday, survived a huge uproar having to do with scrambled pigs.

Now unless your pig’s name is Wilbur, it is most likely going to end up with scrambled eggs. This is life.

Life at the fair includes a pig scramble, in which kids are allowed to chase little piggies around a fenced-in area. If kid catches pig, kid gets to keep said pig and raise it, probably for bacon.

That’s what my oldest sister did. She raised two pigs, which she kept across the road from our house. She named them after me and another sister.

A woman from Chester dislikes the pig scramble. She said it was bad for the pigs.

I know of no studies that validate her claim, but the woman may have a point that they don’t like it. I have it on good authority that when our national anthem was played during the fair’s opening, three little piggies all took a knee in the paddock.

Write to Joe McQuaid at Publisher@unionleader.com or on Twitter at @deucecrew.


Publisher's Notebook