Letters to Globe Magazine

June 19, 2011

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Local ties

I’m sure Alyssa Giacobbe’s creative intent with her article on Newburyport’s Yankee Homecoming was to “stir the pot,” and she certainly achieved that (“Dubious Charm,” June 5). Let me give a different perspective, coming from one who grew up in a small city in Maine (ayuh) and who settled in Newburyport in 1980 as “the next best thing.” Newburyport, like most of Maine, is made up of two groups – natives and those who are “from away.” To some from Newburyport, including my wife, I will always be from away, even after living here for 31 years. You will find that blow-ins are not especially well tolerated in either Maine or Newburyport, unless we find ways to listen more than we talk, recognize that those who have been around longer are more knowledgeable about local customs, and in general not assume that we know more than they do. I found Giacobbe’s article borderline offensive and indicative of someone who probably should have considered staying in Cambridge.

Duncan LaBay / Newburyport

Sorry Giacobbe is not too happy with Newburyport people and the fun times they have. As a onetime resident for 25 years, I hope she finds some good in that great and growing city.

Ellen Thurlow / West Newbury

French lessons

After reading Miss Conduct’s response to T.L. whose friend “speaks a little French” and corrects her pronunciation (June 5), I came up with the following solution. Cher(e) ami(e)T.L.: While enjoying quiche, croissants, and pie a la mode with cafe au lait, I would like to note that your camarade is blase, not au courant, and doesn’t have any savoir-faire. C’est la vie! Or more appropriately: C’est la guerre! A tete-a-tete or preferably a rendezvous en personne with your friend, who I hear is a raconteur par excellence, is en ordre. Apres tout, she seems to think she is elite, and, entre nous, she is a nothing but a common bourgeoise. Au revoir, adieu, and touche.

Mel B. Yoken / Chancellor professor emeritus, French language and literature, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth

Romantic gestures

In his Coupling essay (June 5), Todd Segal Washburn describes the challenges of maintaining the intimacy shared as newlyweds in the romance-killing reality of everyday life in a growing family. I find the situation in my life to be very much the same. His solution involves quiet conversation with his wife as he irons, an activity he defends to the smug male reader. I also have discovered something new that, after 12 years, I can do to evoke a dreamy stare from my wife and that oh-so elusive twinkle in her eye . . . the laundry.

Javier Florez / North Reading

COMMENTS Write to or The Boston Globe Magazine/Letters, PO Box 55819, Boston, MA 02205-5819. Letters are subject to editing.

  • June 19, 2011 cover
  • June 19, 2011 cover
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