Part II: The Fall Guys

The Plotters Northampton is a small town, and there is very little you can get away with without people noticing, and talking about it. The commercial and legal and political world is pretty well focused in about four or five city blocks in the downtown area. You can’t have an affair in Northampton, or if … Continue reading Part II: The Fall Guys

Not their finest hour: Questions raised by neighbors in the Shepherd’s Hollow blaze.

A wake-up call for western Northampton? This story began for me about six weeks ago when I ran into Garson Fields, owner of Berkshire Electrical Cable, coming out of Foster Farrar. “Did you hear about that fire up on Shepherds Hollow?” he says, “Did you hear that the house burnt to the ground, and the … Continue reading Not their finest hour: Questions raised by neighbors in the Shepherd’s Hollow blaze.

The Meadowbrook Chronicles: Part One

For some time, a number of tenants and former tenants of Meadowbrook have been after me to write something about the housing complex and the agency that runs it. As you may remember, a 2004 agreement preserved the development as affordable. Brokered by the Mayor, this deal sold the development to the Boston-based nonprofit, Preservation … Continue reading The Meadowbrook Chronicles: Part One

Power in a Small Town

A month or so ago, I was sitting there in the fortified intake room at the police station. Behind dark aquarium glass, officers were working on dispatch and intake work. They will talk to you if you lift up the phone. On the wall is a bulletin board with a clipboard listing all the Level … Continue reading Power in a Small Town

Not Their Finest Hour

This story began when I ran into Garson Fields coming out of Foster Farrar. “Did you hear about that fire up on Shepherds Hollow?” he says, “Did you hear that the house burnt to the ground, and the fire department never pumped from the swimming pool in back of the house? I heard it had … Continue reading Not Their Finest Hour