Road rage, candidate forums and everything in between

August 13, 1998

Bob MaginnisOf all the entries in our latest letter-writing contest, two stand out. The first came from Donna Mongan, who complained about a driver who pulled out in front of her in a shopping center parking lot, then stopped, sat in his truck and shook his head. She gave him the "no-harm, no-foul" wave, then was surprised as he made a U-turn, blew his horn and made an obscene gesture at her.

"I don't know if he wanted me to know his I.Q. or his mental age, but he was holding up one finger. To me this was blown out of proportion, because it was "no big deal."

The other came from Mary Ellen Pryor, who admitted that she had indeed had been guilty of road rage, but "as a pedestrian, not a motorist." Her rage has been directed at those motorists who refuse to slow down for her when she's crossing East Oak Ridge Drive to get her mail.


"I suppose they all refer to me at that 'crazy lady' who lives there, but when you feel threatened by a several-ton vehicle, she cares?" she asks.

I care and I don't think you're crazy, so I declare you the $20 winner, with my only regret that I can't give the same to everyone who wrote.

Deborah Hunt of the Long Meadow Merchants Association called to say that this Saturday's "Meet the Candidates" event at her shopping center on Md. 60 has attracted more than 50 candidates for Washington County Commissioner, the school board and a variety of party central committee and Maryland General Assembly positions.

The event will be held from noon to 3 p.m., with the candidates setting up tables on the center's sidewalks. If you're confused by the number of candidates and want to know more about them than the names that appear on the ballot, consider coming out this Saturday.

Other meet-the-candidate events I'm aware of include:

- the Women At The Table Event tonight from 5:30 to 9 p.m. at the Elks' Picnic Grounds on Md. 63. It's $15 per person. For more information, call (301) 733-2537.

- the Washington County Republican Club will hold a forum for GOP candidates for county commissioner and central committee Tuesday, August 18 at 7:30 p.m. in room C-11 of Hagerstown Community College. It's free and open to the public.

- the Washington County Chamber of Commerce will hold two forums. The first, for county commissioner candidates, will be held Sept. 22 at 7 a.m. at the Hagerstown Four Points Hotel. A second, for state-level candidates, will be held at the same location, also at 7 a.m., on Oct. 1.

Barring the arrival of Donald Trump, the Hagerstown Roundhouse seems doomed, but it would be a mistake to blame the administration of Mayor Bob Bruchey. Previous administrations had nine years to explore all the ins and outs of this deal, and had it been a priority with them, it wouldn't be facing the wrecking ball now.

On the up side, downtown Hagerstown is looking much better than it did two years ago. With the completion of the Clock Building, the northeast corner of Public Square has gone from the worst to the best quadrant of that intersection.

As I admire that progress, however, I must note that the council is still befuddled by the problem of trash on the streets. I have hope, however, because no doubt a consultant will soon tell the city that two city workers in a pick-up truck could handle the problem, and then it will happen.

Are you irritated by some of the things you read on this page? Would you like to see me get my comeuppance, and be humiliated while others laugh?

You'll have a chance to see that this Friday night at Hagerstown's Municipal Stadium at 7 p.m., when I get into the dunk booth to raise money for Newspaper in Education, a program to bring newspapers and other current events materials into classrooms all over the region.

It's a two-for-one special - dunk me and help the kids. See you at the stadium.

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