Thursday, April 17, 2008

First Post

Hello. This is my first blog post. Welcome! If there actually is anyone out there who stumbles across my blog - wow!

I decided to start a blog because I've found that the things that are important to me seem to be inconsequential to most other people. I've started feeling like a non-entity, so in order not to go crazy, I decided to start a blog. Here I can write about things and if someone happens to stumble across it and likes it, well hey, then maybe I'm not alone after all.

The picture below is my dog heading towards home between two ball fields in the park next to our house. The tallest tree in the distance to the left of the dog is in my backyard. This picture was taken a month or so ago.

Okay. First off, I'd like to tell you about something that happened the other night. I live right next to a very nice park (see above). Half of it consists of numerous soccer fields. The other half consists of little league baseball fields and a pond. The parks department in my nice little city is planning on putting in lighting for the two baseball fields furthest from the houses that abut the park (those fields would be located behind the picture-taker in the above photo). My neighbor and I don't really want this to happen because we think that it will adversely impact the enjoyment of our yards on a summer evening.

We went before the planning board when the issue came up the other night to voice our concerns with the project. My house lies 560 feet from the closest ball field that will be lit. They assured us that spill-out light from the field will reach acceptable levels 425 feet from the field, so they are well within regulations. Wow! A cushion of 135 feet!

That's fine, I know that the lights won't be shining directly into my yard or windows, I'm really just concerned with the general glow and light pollution which will wash the stars from the night sky. I like the stars, but lots of other people don't really care about them, so it's not really something that was looked into. I will miss them terribly. Terribly.

The noise, too, that will come along with the games, which will last until 11:00 pm, six to seven nights a week during the season, was a concern. That and the fact that right now the park closes at dusk. With the advent of the lights, people will be able to roam around, right by the houses, after dark. That's a little creepy, but I guess not creepy enough to be of concern to the parks people, or the planning board.

I also enjoy the wildlife in the park. I asked if they knew what kind of an impact the artificial nighttime lighting would have on the migratory red-winged blackbirds which nest all along one side of the ball fields, and the killdeer which nest in an open field on another side. And what, if any, the effect would be on the other night denizens of the park. I tried to bring up the fact that the wildlife that could be found in, over, and around our park was on par with what could be found in a neighboring National Park - including bald eagles - and so we shouldn't ignore any impact to the habitat that the lights may incur. But I was interrupted and asked if I had any data about all of that. No I didn't, but I reiterated that maybe these things should be looked into.

I know that these things aren't as important to other people as they are to me, but it was worth a try. I guess. But really I just feel pretty foolish about the whole thing. Maybe I came off as nutty. I don't know.

The lighting was approved. My neighbor is putting her house up for sale.


Q said...

Welcome to blogland!
So glad I found you, No you are not nutty or alone. I too love the stars and light pollution is terrible.
People can be so foolish....
Will be reading and catching up.
so glad I met you.

ICQB said...

Thanks for the welcome to blogland, q. I visited your blog and I really like it. The pictures and the things you write are beautiful. I found you through Hedgewitch's blog. There's something so comforting about beautiful pictures and wonderful things written by interesting people - which is what makes blogging great, because you come to find that everyone has something interesting inside them.