Let’s Crash Mario’s Party

I don’t know about you, but I’m thinking (that’s always a troubling thing) it’s time for an OIB party!

Summertime, the warm sun, cool breeze caressing a little juniper spirits. What could be better than that?  Plus, we can settle all this heated action going on between Joel Speedy Gonzalez and Town Committee aka Andy Fardy who (with Ann Barney) is challenging the endorsed candidates in the 138th City Council District.

And then in this corner from Parts Unknown, weighing in at the heft of an eyelash, Local Eyes; and in that corner that verbose guitar slinger and songwriter The Bridgeport Kid.

Forget the mud wrestling match I’ve been dreaming about between Auden Grogins, the Blonde Banshee from Black Rock and the dude she dethroned last August Bullet Bob Keeley, the longest serving legislator in the city’s history. We can have one giant mud wrestling extravaganza with Up On Bridgeport as special guest referee, but we might need Bridgeport’s Finest around just in case to keep the peace.

And then, my ultimate dream match–Yahooy versus Anna, now that’s a beauty. If we can just pull Envoy5 out of retirement that would make my summer. Come on back, Envoy, you’re free to pluck my eyes out.

Where to have a party? I’m open to suggestions. But, hey, we could all crash the Democratic Town Committee fundraiser hosted by Town Chair Mario Testa at his good eats on Madison Avenue June 25. Wouldn’t that be a hoot?

Mario, get ready for a blogger’s boat of RSVPs and no I’m not contributing. I gave enough. But we’ll gladly load up on some free sausage and peppers and a few of your special Super Tuscans. Plus, OIB has a whole bunch of new friends that have come over from the Connecticut Post. Yeah, baby, we have a voter base here.

Why in the world are the Dems throwing a fundraiser anyway? So far this is a death valley cycle with only one City Council primary. (There’s still time.) But it’s a good excuse to load up the bank account for the future and maybe grease a few political paupers who haven’t landed on the payroll because there’re no freaking jobs left!

See, that’s the old trick. No jobs, okay, let’s bulge the treasury to throw the workers a little election day dough.

Maybe we should call a seance and ask Bridgeport Hall of Famer Jim O’Rourke to settle this. News release from Mayor Bill Finch below:

Mayor Finch to Announce Key Contribution to Erect O’Rourke Statue

Steelpointe Harbor Developer to Donate $50,000

BRIDGEPORT, CT (June 9, 2009) – A little bit of baseball history will be played out at home plate at the Ballpark at Harbor Yard Wednesday night when Steelpointe Harbor developer Bob Christoph Sr., presents Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch with a key contribution to kick-off a fund-raising campaign to erect a statue in honor of Baseball Hall of Famer James “Orator Jim” O’Rourke.

Christoph, principal of Bridgeport Landing Development LLC, is donating $50,000 to open the fund-raising drive to complete the statue, which is expected to cost about $75,000. The announcement will be made during pre-game ceremonies at 6:40 p.m. Wednesday just prior to the Bridgeport Bluefish game. A scale model of the proposed statue, created by noted sculptor Susan Clinard, also will be unveiled during the announcement

A Yale Law School graduate, O’Rourke was born in Bridgeport, and was the first player to make a base hit in the National League, and at age 54, the oldest player ever to appear and hit safely in the League. During his lengthy career, he amassed a .311 batting average and was the first man to have played Major League ball in four different decades – from the 1870s into the early years of the 1900s.

“We are extremely happy that Bob Christoph and his team took this project to heart and made this very generous donation to open the fund-raising drive,” said Mayor Finch. “James O’Rourke was a fine baseball player, a scholar and a gentleman, and it is only fitting that his hometown should recognize his achievements by erecting a statue in his honor. We hope that generations of young athletes will learn from Mr. O’Rourke’s achievements and follow in his footsteps both on and off the field. I made a commitment that Mr. O’Rourke’s house wouldn’t be demolished until we had a way to preserve his memory, and thanks to Bob Christoph’s generosity we’re able to move forward.”

Bob Christoph adds, “Bridgeport Landing Development LLC, as the designated developer for the Steelpointe Harbor project is proud to join Mayor Finch in the quest to permanently honor and memorialize the life of this City’s Baseball Hall of Famer, James Henry “Orator Jim” O’Rourke, who had raised his family in a home located in what is now Steelpointe. Setting this statue at the entrance to the Bridgeport Bluefish Baseball Stadium will be a great reminder and inspiration to each stadium attendee for years to come, of this native son and how his integrity, honesty, determination and dedication made him a Hall of Famer both on the field and in life.”

O’Rourke, was the first of 243 major leaguers who attended an Ivy League school. He practiced law in the off-season, while continuing to play baseball until he was in his 50s and beyond. He was known around the League as “Orator Jim” for his vocabulary and distinct speaking style.

First Hit, Inc., a nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving the memory of James O’Rourke, has engaged sculptor Susan Clinard of West Haven to create the statue. As a young sculptor in Chicago, Susan worked on statues of baseball greats like Al Kaline and Ty Cobb, under the Rotblatt-Amrany Studios. She also was commissioned by the city of Chicago to sculpt a statue of Samuel Gompers. Ms. Clinard will be in attendance on Wednesday evening.

Also in attendance for the announcement will be descendants of James O’Rourke; members of the Irish-American community; First Hit, Inc., leadership, and Paul Timpanelli, chief executive of the Bridgeport Regional Business Council, which is administering the fund-raising through the Bridgeport Regional Business Foundation.

 New Gallery Exhibit

Please Join us for:
Greetings from Ghostland

Michael Raleigh shows his mixed media art work
Artist Reception, Thursday June 11th 2009
6pm till 9pm
Show runs through July 11th

100 percent of the proceeds of the Painting “Wait No More”will be donated to the Black Rock Food Pantry

The Gallery at Black Rock
2861 Fairfield Ave.
Bridgeport CT.06605




  1. As mentioned today on Lennie’s blog, my solo artist show Greetings From Ghostland opens tomorrow, June 11th at the Gallery at Black Rock, 2861 Fairfield Avenue. The opening reception is from 6-9PM.
    21 of my large painted works and over 40 smaller, more affordable works are included in this show.
    For the opening night only, there will be a video installation of five of my photographic slideshows. Included videos are of Pleasure Beach and St. Margaret’s Shrine.

    I’m pleased to announce that The Gallery at Black Rock and I will be donating the entire $500 sale price of my painting “Wait No More” to The Black Rock Food Pantry. We’re taking this opportunity to give back to our community in these harsh economic times.
    What’s in it for you? Your purchase of this original work of art by me is a tax-deductible $500 contribution to The Black Rock Food Pantry. You get art, you get a tax deduction, and people get to eat.
    For those who think that the arts don’t contribute to the community, take a bite of that!

    Here’s a link to the painting:
    www .facebook.com/home.php?#/photo.php?pid=30361725&op=1&o=all&view=all&subj=87717128258&aid=-1&oid=87717128258&id=1454675548

    We expect the opening to be well attended and a great time. Hope to see you all there.

    Oh, and this isn’t my first post on this blog. I’m not prepared to reveal my secret indomitable identity at this time.

    Greetings From Ghostland
    Michael Raleigh

  2. *** It seems that those who criticize Bpt. in general the most may work or visit Bpt. quite often; however “don’t” really live in the city or pay Bpts. auto & real-estate taxes either! *** Thus giving the impression of living in a glass house & routinely talking the talk but not walking the walk! *** This of course is “only” an OIB personal opinion, without the stamp of approval (#666) from the Federal Government or the powers that be, so you have the right to “Forget about it”! ***

  3. Mojo; You hit the nail on the head with this latest post. Just to take it a step further, most of the people making the decisions that got us into the mess we are in don’t even live in Bridgeport.
    These power brokers do not have to live with the decisions they make; we do. Even the decision makers that do live here or moved here will be gone when their man leaves office.
    The one person I know that moved here was Nancy Hadley. She lives downtown and has remained even after she was forced to leave her job.

  4. Old Fancy Nancy moved here after the city put the brakes on the take-home vehicle she was driving back and forth to Newington every day.
    I have always said that everyone in the Planning and Economic Development office (with the exception of Steve T) moved out of the city once we paid them enough so that they could afford to live elsewhere.
    And they all have such a negative opinion of the city that the only way they can sell it is to try to shove tax breaks down people pockets.
    Off with their heads!!!

    1. *** Nancy’s car came along with her contract; legally she didn’t have to give it back to the city; however she was a team player, always trying to go the extra mile for the city & agreed. She was ten times better than what they have running the show now! If most of the city’s individual employees were as dedicated to the city & their job as Nancy was, many things would be running much better in general. *** However, those on the outside looking in that get their info. from the local papers or rumor mills & disgruntled employees probably would disagree but that’s nothing new in Bpt. ***

  5. Just a thought but I was asked this question today and really did not have an answer. Maybe Bob the Troll Walsh can help out.
    Has anyone at any time done an audit on the city books? I mean at one point we are told the finances are great and we have a large rainy-day fund. The next minute we are one step away from the poor house.
    We are laying off people who dedicated their worklife to Bridgeport and we are told there is no money. The next thing you know we are hiring politically connected people or friends of connected people.
    Maybe it’s time for an audit and time to do away with the Sherwood accounting system.

    1. *** The name of the legal firm slips my mind @ the moment but the answer is yes, every year as a matter of fact an operational audit is done on the city. It’s reviewed with the firm representatives, the city finance office & the co-chairs of the B&A committee, with copies of the report given to the members of the B&A committee, council pres. and Mayor’s Admin. ***


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