Massachusetts real estate transactions for Hampden Hampshire and Franklin counties Jan. 9, 2022 edition. Ask Amy: Husband and wife having difficulty remembering correct pronouns for daughter’s non-binary mate. Some examples: We stopped at a rest stop on the interstate and he let his dog out of the vehicle to run around loose while he used the restroom, although there is a leash law at the rest stop and a designated area for dogs.
When we were camping, he let his dog run loose without supervision, and it urinated on the mat our friends had placed in front of their motorhome.
His dog greets me by jumping on me. I feel that this behavior is too rough, especially when sometimes the dog’s toenails scratch me and break the skin.
When I try to walk, the dog stays right in front of me, touching me. My boyfriend says that the dog will move along with me as I move, but it makes me feel off-balance and I worry I will trip.
I’ve voiced my concerns to my boyfriend, but he doesn’t see a problem. He says that dogs will be dogs, and that he likes dogs better than people.
I look forward to your advice.
– Canine Questions
Dear Questions: You say you have some experience with animals, and yet I maintain that any human being with a shred of human-sense (regardless of animal experience) would realize that a loose dog can get hit by a car, can attack another human or animal, can be taken, injured, or simply choose to leave with a better-suited and more responsible family.
Every scenario you present exemplifies a complete lack of regard for you – your comfort and your safety – as well as for the dog, which is obviously undisciplined and at risk.
You have been handed an extremely clear lens through which to view this man.
If you ignore what you see, your life will quite literally go to the dogs.
My immediate advice is that you should set both man and dog loose to wander along the interstate rest stop of life.
Dear Amy: Our adult daughter and her partner have been together since college. They live together in another city.
There has been some talk of marriage over the years.
Several months ago, they video-called us to let us know that he no longer identifies as male, but as gender non-binary. He has adopted the pronouns they/them/their.
They are not to be referred to as a “man” or her boyfriend.
When/if she and they marry, they will not be her husband, but a gender-neutral term.
My wife and I have concerns, but are ultimately tolerant of their choice.
However, she and I have been using the English language for a collective 100-plus years and are having a hard time making this linguistic transition.
Our daughter (not them) gently corrects us, and there seems to be an indeterminate grace period for us to get it right consistently.
On a recent visit, I was corrected, and yet made the same mistake within a minute.
I don’t think I’ll ever get the hang of this language-bending.
I found myself (normally chatty and jokey) shutting down and saying less out of concern I’ll use the wrong pronoun again.
I am trying but feel burdened by constant awareness of one person’s gender identity and having to choose my words so carefully.
– Struggling with Them
Dear Struggling: You both love your daughter, and she loves all of you. Always start with that.
You will adjust.
One way to do this is to use the person’s chosen name, versus referring to them by a pronoun, certainly, if they are present, i.e.: “Chas, what’s your take on that?”
You have known this person for a long time. That person is still there – carrying the same memories and shared experiences from before this transition. So, make an effort to see them for who they are, and as more than just a source of some awkwardness or confusion for you.
Keep your sense of humor, don’t become defensive, let them know that you’re a work-in-progress, and that you’re hoping for their continued patience while you adjust.
A Massachusetts liquor store is happy to be reopened after an individual drove through its front doors Saturday morning before helping themselves to drinks and food inside.
Rapid Liquors in Stoneham delayed its opening Saturday after an individual drove through the store’s front doors around 1 a.m. After crashing, the driver of the car walked around the store and drank beer, smoked a cigar and ate a bag of chips before the Stoneham Police Department arrived and arrested them, the store wrote on Facebook.
“We’re happy to be back open for business and happy that it occurred overnight while there was no one in the store so my family and staff are all safe,” owner Doug Shahian told MassLive. “The Stoneham Police Department did a tremendous job safely apprehending the individual and our local businesses like Boston Board Up and the local Service Master got us up and running almost at normal time.”
As of Saturday, the Stoneham Police Department has not provided information in connection with the crash.
NASA’s new space telescope opened its huge, gold-plated, flower-shaped mirror Saturday, the final step in the observatory’s dramatic unfurling.
The last portion of the 21-foot mirror swung into place at flight controllers’ command, completing the unfolding of the James Webb Space Telescope.
“I’m emotional about it. What an amazing milestone. We see that beautiful pattern out there in the sky now,” said Thomas Zurbuchen, chief of NASA’s science missions.
More powerful than the Hubble Space Telescope or any other predecessor, the $10-billion Webb will scan the cosmos for light streaming from the first stars and galaxies formed 13.7 billion years ago. To accomplish this, NASA had to outfit Webb with the largest and most sensitive mirror ever launched — its “golden eye,” as scientists call it.
Webb is so big that it had to be folded orgami-style to fit in the rocket that soared from its South America launch site two weeks ago. The riskiest operation occurred earlier in the week, when the tennis-court-size sun shield unfurled, providing subzero shade for the mirror and infrared detectors.
Flight controllers in Baltimore began opening the primary mirror Friday, unfolding the left side like a drop-leaf table. The mood was even more upbeat Saturday, with peppy music filling the control room as the right side snapped into place. After applauding, the controllers immediately got back to work, latching everything down. They jumped to their feet, exchanged high-fives and cheered from behind masks when the operation was finally complete 2 ½ hours later, doing their best to remain socially distanced because of the global surge in COVID-19 cases.
“We have a deployed telescope on orbit, a magnificent telescope the likes of which the world has never seen,” Zurbuchen said, congratulating the team. “So how does it feel to make history, everybody? You just did it.”
His counterpart at the European Space Agency, astronomer Antonella Nota, noted that after years of preparation, the team made everything look “so amazingly easy.”
“This is the moment we have been waiting for, for so long,” she said.
Webb’s main mirror is made of beryllium, a lightweight yet sturdy and cold-resistant metal. Each of its 18 segments is coated with an ultra-thin layer of gold, highly reflective of infrared light. The hexagonal, coffee table-size segments must be adjusted in the weeks ahead so they can focus as one on stars, galaxies and alien worlds that might hold atmospheric signs of life.
“It’s like we have 18 mirrors that are right now little prima donnas all doing their own thing, singing their own tune in whatever key they’re in, and we have to make them work like a chorus, and that is a methodical, laborious process,” operations project scientist Jane Rigby told reporters.