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  • In the weeks since a dead tree outside my office window was taken down I have become aware of how many near-misses there are on Main Street on any given day.
  • What passes as a positive sign on the national front is when the headlines in the morning and the terrible thing that led the news when you went to bed are the same. Risk and scandal have seemed to come quickly in the last few months, with a fresh outrage presenting itself at almost every turn of the clock.
  • Up before dawn, I heard a spade-foot toad calling from the small swamp just west of my house. Spring mornings can be loud down here alongside Gardiner’s Bay, but on Wednesday, after a thunderstorm that came through during the night, the toad and a few birds whose songs I did not recognize were the only voices I heard.
  • Montauk’s venerable Keeshan Real Estate will join Compass, an emerging powerhouse in the home-sales market, the companies announced this week.
  • I did not get around to gathering a few surf clams to freeze for bait when thousands of them washed up along the ocean last week. Those who did could have put away enough to last the entire porgy season.
  • March storms are hard on the ocean beach. The month was also hard on ships in the long age of sail, many of which ran aground on the shore here on their way to and from the Port of New York.
  • It is a cliché for travelers to return from abroad marveling about rail transportation in another country. But, having just gotten back from Japan, where the trains, as they say, run on time, I must indulge.
  • People used to be surprised when I said that the beach along the southern reach of Gardiner’s Bay has eroded at about a foot a year since about the time I was born. When my parents had a small house moved to the property in the early 1960s, there were just over 400 feet between Cranberry Hole Road and the high tide line. One of these days, I’ll go look at a neighbor’s recent survey on file at East Hampton Town Hall to know for sure, but I’d say the distance is no more than 360 feet today.
  • Leo the pig does not do much in the winter. Actually, Leo, a house pet of unusual size, never does much at all. It’s just that on these early mornings, when I sit at the kitchen table thinking about what to write as he stands idly by, his easy ways are more obvious.

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