This Is Framingham

This Is Framingham
Life in the ‘ham

Civic League moving out

December 17th, 2008


I have to say I am pretty sick of things leaving downtown.  It started with Ebenezer’s going out and has been on a downward spiral since then: Daisy’s consignment shop, the one Thai restaurant in town, Friendly’s, the Farmer’s Exchange and of course Fabric Place.  Now the Civic League is going to close at the end of the month.
Believe me, I want to be optimistic about downtown because I own a home here but sometimes it’s hard when the things you lake are dropping like flies.  It was so great to have a place nearby that would have everything from artist lectures to Japanese-Mexican wrestling.
The one good thing is that is will not become the the 30-somethingth church (I’m not joking, look in the yellow pages)  in downtown, but will become part of Mass Bay Community College’s facilities and I think they will do a decent job at up-keeping and usefully occupying the space.
The Civic League will continue to exist as an organization, just not in this space.

People:1 Trees:0

August 29th, 2008


Almost a year ago,  I posted about the Salvation Army placing potted trees outside it’s window base where people would sit.  It seemed like a great way to make the corner look nice and obviously Salvation Army wanted to discourage people from sitting there.
Months later, I noticed people were sharing the pots with the trees and sitting in them.  Also, the condition of the trees was deteriorating.  Mid-summer, I noticed the trees were completely dead and anything that was green was a dry rusty orange.  Finally last week I noticed that they just got rid of the trees and people are sitting on the pots. So the progression was like this:
1.   :/
 
2.  🙂

3.  :/

4.  🙁

I hope the Salvation Army tries again to make it’s entrance look nice.  They chose to put those trees there in the first place so they must have wanted it to look nice.   I know someone will say I’m anti-helping people or something but I thought it looked nice with the trees there and think picture 2 looks better than picture 1 (or 3 or 4).  I’m not saying there shouldn’t be organizations that help people who need it, but I thought it was nice that such an organization was trying to improve it’s appearance in an area that could use a facelift.
 

Watch your step

August 22nd, 2008


Last May I was all excited at Town Meeting that we approved funds for repairing the crumbling steps in front of Town Hall/Memorial Building.  As the months went by I figured there must be some plan in action but then a whole year went by and still here in August 08 nothing seems to have changed except the arrangements of the cones and the deteriation of the steps.
I’m sure other people have noticed too since it is such a visable structure representing the town and they have done such a nice job with the landscaping and brickwork in front of the building, it’s a shame the steps remain neglected.
I went to the Christmas tree lighting ceremony in December ’06 where everyone crowded around on the frontsteps and people had to watch where they were standing and make sure they weren’t on a piece of crumble.  I can’t imagine the challenge of what that was like last year or what it will be like this year if they are still not repaired.
I’m starting to investigate and will post any information about progress on this I can find out if anyone is interested.

Seavers Flowers

June 17th, 2008


I was a little reluctant to make this post because I like to support local business but I felt it might be helpful to anyone who is considering ordering flowers or gift baskets in the area.
My sister who lives on the west coast  was shopping online to have a gift basket delivered to Ethan and me for our anniversary a couple of weeks a go.  She picked Seavers Flowers on Concord St. and ordered a “Gourmet” food basket and although it said all orders placed by 1pm will be delivered that day, she went ahead and ordered a few days before just to be safe and received conformation via email when she placed her order.
From their site:

My sister called me Saturday morning and said she didn’t want ruin the surprise so she wouldn’t say what it was but wanted to make sure someone would be home Saturday to recieve a delivery.  So I waited until Ethan woke up to run some errands and then came home and later in the afternoon had to go out again and checked with Ethan to see if he was planning on going out so that one of us would be home. 
I got home around 5 and still no delivery.  My sister called and was surprised that we had not received anything- she tried calling but  Seaver’s closes at 5 and does not have voicemail, they’re closed on Sundays, so she called Monday.

When she got someone on the phone she explained what happened and that it was for an anniversary and she had recived confirmation of the order and it’s delivery date but it never arrived .  She told me the guy just responded with “ok”.   So she said “Well I’d like to cancel the order and have my card credited the amount since it never arrived and he just said “okay, I’ll look it up and cancel it”.    The guy told her he’d call her that afternoon to let her know that her card was credited but he never did so she had to call the next day and got confirmation.

The guy at Seaver’s wasn’t obnoxiously rude, but he never apologized or made any effort to somehow make her want to use  their flower shop again- she just got the feeling they didn’t care.  As a customer she trusted that they knew how to follow through on what they offer.   Maybe they just had an off day, but this was my sister’s experience and I thought this might be helpful to share it.

Potted trees no match for people who want to sit

June 7th, 2008

 
In September I posted about the placement of potted trees the Salvation Army put by the front door to keep people from sitting on the little ledge under the window and possibly keep people from loitering so much.

There were some comments on that post about how the trees made the corner look nicer and I agree, it was a great way to keep that corner less congested and also make it look nice.

I’m sure this happened a lot sooner than yesterday, but that’s when I was walking by and noticed that people were actually sitting in the pots.

One tree looks pretty worn from being a backrest too:

There must be some happy medium but I’m guessing Salvation Army doesn’t want people hanging out at the corner because they would have put a bench or some sort of seating in that area instead of potted trees.  But at the same time people are clearly going to sit at the corner no matter what – unless they screen/fence off that area but I think that would make the corner look aesthetically worse .
Anyway, people sitting in the pots kind of defeats the purpose of putting them there, so I wonder if the Salvation Army will think of something else.

No!

March 22nd, 2008


A source has informed me that White Hardware in the Franklin St. (sad) Plaza is going out of business (after 80 frickin years!).
As I mentioned in my previous post about this store, I enjoyed having it near my house and it’s pleasantly simple shopping experience.  I’m sad to see a small business close and also add to the sadness of sad plaza.
I hope something useful will move into this space but I won’t be surprised if the building remains vacant for years either.
We will miss ye, White Hardware.  Thanks for being there when we needed you!

Bickford’s

June 17th, 2007


We haven’t been to Bickford’s in years and thought we’d try them for breakfast.  I wasn’t expecting a gourmet breakfast but thought it might be good to catch up on the local chain and see how it’s doing.
We started off with a fruit cup, which was pretty good.  The fruit actually seemed fresh, not sitting in syrup.

Ethan got strawberry pancakes and I got an apple and cinnamon waffle.  We both asked for real maple syrup which was brought in warmed individual serving bottles.

Ethan’s pancakes were bland with a mushy pile of thawed frozen strawberries.  My waffle was also bland with surprisingly tasteless apple wedges.  Maybe they boiled them or they’re canned, I don’t know what sucks the flavor out of an apple.  the waffle was slightly crisp on the outside but complete mush on the inside.  With enough maple syrup they were both ok though.

We shared a side of homes fries and sausage too. The home fries were moist and room temperature, like they had been microwave and sitting around.  I don’t remember anything about the sausage at this point, I think they were just ok.

Our waitress seemed ok as far as friendliness, maybe her section was too big, it was kind of busy and we didn’t see her again after the food was served until the end of the meal.  I don’t hold it against her for not coming over sooner though, I get the feeling not much could have been done anyway.  Maybe heat up the home fries but it’s most likely they’d just pop them in the microwave and it wasn’t worth flagging her down.

It wasn’t a non-edible meal but we won’t be rushing back for breakfast any time soon.  Although, for some reason I feel like they would have good burgers or something non-breakfast.  So maybe we’ll try them again after noon sometime.

Long story short: Stick with the fruit cup for breakfast.

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