Many of the names and some of the descriptions in this blog have been changed to protect the guilty.

Friday, July 1, 2016

Miscellaneous Shit

OK, you know how superstitious I am: when I reached 12 “Shitting to All Fields” posts, I refused to add an unlucky 13th, so I changed the posts without one central theme to “Bullshitting to All Fields.” Now that I’ve reached the 12th of the latter, I’ve changed the posts with assorted stuff to “Miscellaneous Shit.”

Doesn’t work for you? Oh well. Come up with another title and leave a comment at the end of the blog!

The Algonquin Freezer on Riverdale Road became Pete’s Drive-in, which was run by Pete Platanitis. That place turned into Pete’s Hickory Hearth in the early 1960s, but it went bankrupt in 1972 and the Laurel House efficiency apartments were there for years.

The Algonquin Freezer was next to the Wayside Food Shop and Terrace Gardens, a popular restaurant that had its run on Riverdale from 1932 to 1967. 

The Wayside hosted orchestra performances and  “New York floor shows” that included striptease acts. The building, torn down in 1968, was in the general area of this psychic readings place, a little south and across the street from the Dominican nuns’ monastery: 

From the Facebook group You Knew You Grew Up in Springfield, Massachusetts if: Jethro Tull, Dave Mason, and The Jacksons at the Civic Center, and Donovan at the Julia Sanderson (Paramount) Theatre.

This poster was from 1970:

At the Paramount in 1988:

I wonder how that Air Supply show was? LMFAO!

Here’s another gem from that same Facebook site. Remember Gas Land in The Acres after Jumbo market burned down? The place looks closed in this photo.

And yet another from that site. It had a faded photo of Morganetta the elephant that the photographer restored. Looks good—although I wish he Photoshopped the chain off her leg.

They finally tore down the Agawam Motel, a subject of one of my Bullshitting to All Fields posts.

It doesn’t look like they bothered saving the neon “MOTEL” sign on the side of the building, but I’d like to think they saved the arrow-shaped one in front. It didn’t work 100 percent, but it was worth preserving!

Well, I did some research, and it looks like the “MOTEL” sign bit the dust, according to The Reminder newspaper: “The bright red letters that read, “motel,” crumbled as the force of an excavator demolition truck’s claw-like arm pummeled the west side of the Agawam Motor Lodge to rubble.” But what about the other sign?

If anyone knows the fate of that sign, leave a comment!

Yes, it’s the one and only “Larry the Jogger” or Larry Saex, minus the radio. The 66-year-old has been running 14.5 miles a day—every day—for the past 43 years.

The following is a brutally honest obituary of Thom Lincoln (pictured above and below), a guy from Ware who died last spring of a heroin overdose at 32:

“Our dearest son Thom entered eternal peace on Wednesday April 13th due to a heroin overdose after a courageous struggle with addiction. He found a wrong path in life, and once he was on that path it took hold. He knew he was better than his addiction. Thom was a bright, talented, loving, hilarious and beautiful human. He was also a fiercely loyal friend to those he cared about. We tried everything. We exhausted every avenue. We tried counseling, we tried rehab. We tried rehab yet again. We prayed so much throughout the years, I wonder if God was simply tired of listening. Thom pretended to be happy but he could see all the things that he had lost. Drugs made him feel different, pain-free. He made a choice. We don’t think he chose to die, but he made choices that killed him. In my heart of hearts, I think he just knew he didn’t have another recovery in him. Thom had lots of family and friends who loved him, interacted with him, supported him and cared for him, but still couldn’t show him a way that could cure his addiction. He had all that advantages a kid could want and this still happened. So if you have a friend or relative who is fighting the fight against addiction please do everything you can to be supportive. We don’t want this to happen to another child or another mom and dad. There can’t be anything worse. We have suffered losses before. But now, it’s different. I didn’t know that I’d never hold my son again, I didn’t know I wouldn’t hear him call me mom again. When you think of him, hopefully the “bad things” never surface and you will remember the laughs, the love and the memories you shared. Because there was so much GOOD. Please hold and cherish those times forever. Thom is survived by his parents Michael and Diane, and his brother Ted. Services for Thom will be private. In lieu of flowers gifts may be made in the name of Thom Lincoln to The Herren Project, PO Box 131, Portsmouth RI.”

It kind of reminds me of the 2011 obituary of the brother of a guy and a girl I went to grammar school with. It doesn’t say how he died at 52, but it concludes with “He struggled with alcoholism for most of his adult life.” Most families wouldn’t put this kind of information in an obit. It takes courage. Bravo to them.

Well, the Thunderbirds is the name of the new Springfield AHL team. Here is the logo: 

Whoops, that’s not it. Here it is:

The ownership invited fans to make name suggestions online, and of course the Indians was the most popular. But, at a press conference, Paul Picknelly said they scotched it because of the PC police. The new logo, however, is a nod to the Indians team past—the Native Americans’ mythic thunderbird on top of totem poles—as well as the Falcons. In fact, the bird looks JUST LIKE A FALCON.

The new team promo is pretty good, though. It even has a photo of Coliseum Charlie!

Oh well, at least they didn’t name it something like the Armor, Springfield’s now-defunct basketball D-league team. It was a dumb name and a dumber logo.

You know what name got a lot votes? The Springfield Isotopes. I bullshit you not.

All right, I can live with the Thunderbirds, I guess. 

And to all you people who would have put up a stink if they had named them the Indians, I have this to say:

Lick my plate you dog dick!

Okay. That’s all, folks


TD said...

I went to the 1974 Donovan show for free on a press pass I had as co-Editor of The Ram, the Springfield Technical Community College newspaper. Since I could go to any show for free, I went to everything. I even used it once to attend a Jefferson Starship concert in Boston, which also got me into a press conference the afternoon of the show with Paul Kantner and Grace Slick. Grace just sat there looking very hungover and Paul did all the talking. Donovan, by the time he came to Springfield, was surviving on the last gasps of the nostalgia fumes left over from his 60's hey-day, but as I recall it was a performance full of good pop music and a better show than I expected.

Hell's Acres said...

That must have been quite the Donovan show, despite him being past his prime.

I saw a Jefferson Starship show in the Springfield Civic Center in '83. It was not well-attended and it was easy to get up near the stage. It wasn't their classic Marty Balin-era lineup, but I thought Grace was really "with it" and sounded great. So did Mickey Thomas. One of my friends, who worked in the kitchen in a bar downtown (Tilly's?), said that after the show some roadies were trying to score some coke for the band. Don't know how true that story is (it was probably for themselves) but Grace did party a lot!

Anonymous said...

I was researching facts about West Springfield having just moved to the area and stumbled onto your blog. Great stuff! As a younger guy I really appreciate someone taking the time to lay out history and pictures to show off these awesome places and facts. ANYWAY I know the fate of the Agawam Motel sign!! 4 days ago I saw it against the wall in a lot behind a house on the same street Frigos in Springfield is on! We stopped and looked at it and it looked to be in great shape. Across the street was a church that they are doing major construction work too. GO take a look and find it!

Hell's Acres said...

I'll have to take a pic of that sign! What street?

Anonymous said...

i was at the UB40 show at the paramount. they asked us to stop dancing in the balcony because it was going to collapse... STOP DANCING TO UB40?!!!!