The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports

Columns

April 22, 2013

Catching a whiff of 'Vermont Vapor'

We just came back from a weekend in Manchester, Vt., and my wife insists that something “magical” happens when you pass the state sign. “I think they spray ‘Vermont Vapor’ out of the sign or something,” she opined, “something that actually changes us.”

I think she’s on to something.

The minute you enter the Green Mountain State, you start to feel different. You have different desires — hankerings for things that you, well, never have hankered for before.

Like aged cheese, wind chimes, plaid hats, hand-hewn lawn ornaments, and maple-flavored everything. And moose.

Vermont is a snow-globe mixture of the best of Thomas Kinkade, Norman Rockwell, The Old Farmer and his Almanac, and Jerry Garcia. I throw Garcia into the mix because there is a decidedly twisted edginess to the whole state that is undeniable.

Our first stop was at an “original” “Ye Olde Tyme Country Store.” (They do that a lot here — add an “e” to old and refer to time as “tyme.”) They also refer to places as barns and shoppes — places that are neither barns nor shoppes. Like The Suspender Barn. Or Maggie’s Peanut Brittle Barn. Or Plunkett’s Down Home Bargain Barn. None of these businesses were in barns, of course. Instead they were all in shops, or shoppes. Oh well, you get the idea.

Although this store looked “original,” I guessed that every little town and hamlet in Vermont has one. They have to have it. It is the state’s currency. It is why we come here. Whether original or fabricated, we don’t care. This is Vermont and we want olde and tyme, darn it. This store had a creaky, old front porch, high-backed rocking chairs and a “Don’t Tread On Me” flag flapping in the breeze.

Text Only
Big Chuck D'Imperio

Cary Brunswick

Chuck Pinkey
Guest Column
Lisa Miller

Mark Simonson

Rick Brockway
Sam Pollak
William Masters
  • Schreibman tops Chris Gibson on women's issues

    As the time to vote draws near, we need to remember how money can run politics more than we can. Raising funds is a prominent (if not the dominant) task of getting elected. Raising issues is also crucial, but those efforts are subject to distortion and fear-mongering.

    September 18, 2012

  • Republicans feelentitled to allthey can garner

    An entitlement is a legal benefit available from the government to individuals who are within a defined category of recipients, such as needing insurance for unemployment or health services.

    September 4, 2012

  • Romney focuses on self; Obama emphasizes unity

    Mitt Romney criticizes President Obama for saying a person's success is rooted in his community, and is not all his alone. Romney belittles this with his belief in individual initiative. He is better at the put-down than the push-up.

    August 21, 2012

  • Romney shows little regard for common man

    The Republicans in Congress have voted over and over, 33 times, redundantly and uselessly, to rescind what they call Obamacare.

    August 7, 2012

  • Scouts' gay ban creates problem where none exists

    The Boy Scouts of America's "emphatic reaffirmation" of its vow to exclude any and all homosexuals from its hallowed ranks is ill-considered and pathetic, especially in view of its having reviewed the matter for two years.

    July 24, 2012

Additional Content
Join the Debate
Helium
Additional Resources
CNHI News Service
Poll

Are your taxes going to be done on time?

Yes, they're all finished
I should make it in under the wire
No, I'm late
No, I'm filing an extension
I'm not filing a tax return
     View Results