Newburyport–Go Along to Get Along

The “go along to a get along” thing, I’ve never been good at it. In fact, I suck at it, so much so that it seems sometimes to me to be deep within my genes. It is both oddly one of my major character defects and one of my major strengths.

To succeed in corporate America, “go along to get along” helps a great deal. As an artist, or an activist, not so much.

My father always tried to encourage the “go along” approach in life, economically, socially, on all sorts of levels, it helps immensely. But if I try the “go along to get along” thing for any length of time, it makes me itch.

And it’s one of the reasons I miss Tom Ryan and the Undertoad in Newburyport, MA. If ever there was someone who refused to do the “go along to get along” approach, it was Mr. Ryan.

Now in Newburyport, MA there are a blanket of blogs out there with a “go along to get along” approach. They are probably very smart. It makes me itch.

I was once asked by a local politician to be the blog voice that supported Newburyport/New England Development, to be a part of something really big. To “go along to get along” with the largest owners of downtown Newburyport and the folks that work so closely with them.

I declined, knowing that I probably would break out in a rash, it would be going so much against the grain of my innate nature.

It seemed to me that as a blogger it would be good for me to have a skeptical nature about our largest downtown landowner and the folks that work so closely with him. I doubted that whatever my input might be, the powers with millions of dollars probably had a pretty good idea already of what they felt would be the most expedient use of their resources to develop the property in question–I would most likely not change or mold anyone’s mind.

So in the political landscape that is shaping up for the 2009 local Newburyport election, I may wonder closely about any candidate that contemplates whether they might have the power of persuasion over the multi-million dollar project that will one day take place on the most expensive land in Newburyport, MA, along the mouth of the Merrimac River. Or think that they might be the person that is able to really “go along to get along” and bring all the powers that be, with all the inevitable conflicts of interest, to the table and shape the Newburyport to come. The fascinating and fractious history and spirit of our small New England city is witness to the difficulty of ever achieving this most ambitious point of view.