By Josh Resnek
When the Leader Herald hits the stands on Wednesday, there will be exactly six days until Christmas.
If you are like me, you haven’t yet bought a single present.
I don’t know what I want to buy.
I’m not even sure this year if I want to buy anyone anything.
You see, I’m still mourning the death of my mother in July. She won’t be around this Christmas, the first time in my life ado I don’t feel myself wanting to celebrate and frankly, I would feel guilty celebrating.
I still can’t look at a photograph of my mother without getting real emotional – that’s short hand for crying.
In fact, I was rummaging through photographs the other day and started gazing at photographs off my father.
I idolized my father. I adored my mother, always.
Now that they are both gone, there is neither my mother or my father to sit at the dinner table with us on Christmas Day. In terms of what this means, let’s just say that it make for a very, very empty table.
Another dynamic has taken place since my mother died. My two older sons have disappeared from my table. They also came because Granny, as my mother was called, kind of held the family together.
But then my sons are probably still coming to terms with Granny’s death as she was their very good and close friend. So celebrating anything without Granny for them is a celebration without the real heart and soul of the family seated at the table.
For my 19-year-old daughter the holiday without Granny is tough to take. I won’t hear a word of this because she is incapable of publicly dealing with her loss.
She is the type that keeps things like the death of a loved one deep inside.
She cares and she cares deeply but she says not a word about it.
Some people say this is a problem. I’m not sure. Everyone grieves in their own way in this world, don’t they?
No two people deal with loss the same way.
Back to Christmas coming…it is still coming even though my mother is no longer here.
Preparations have been made by my wife inside our home which now smells like a pine forest lit up with tiny white lights everywhere. I love the white lights. There is something about brilliant small white lights lighting up so many corners of my home. There are white lights strung along the bannister leading down from the second floor. White lights all over the tree are also brilliant.
When I come home these days I light a fire.
I’ve got a pretty big replace and the thing really roars when I get it going., It is in the living room where the tree is by the window. The warmth from the replace is so special, as those of you who have replaces can all attest to.
Christmas in six days and then another six days and this year is history.
It was the best of times.
It was the worst of times.
It was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness. It was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity. It was the season of light. It was the season of darkness. It was the spring of hope. It was the winter of despair.
That was how Charles Dickens put it white brilliantly at the start of his great novel, “A Tale of Two Cities.”
It is a quite often used famous quote that I wanted to share without readers.
Read it again and again and it gets better every time.
Merry Christmas to you all and thank you for your support.
Your support means everything to us. Baruch Hashem.
Gaming Revenues at Springfield MGM Dip
Speaking of the Spring eld casino, the Gaming Commission’s figures reports that MGM Springfield, which opened in August, saw its gaming revenues dip to $21.2 million in November, down $1 million from October and down even more from September. Nothing to worry about per se. Though their revenues bear watching. Keep in mind: Encore Boston Harbor opens next year in Everett, in our city, on our turf, and what a thing that will be. That’s when the monthly revenue numbers will get really interesting. But is Encore going to open on time? That is the question, as Shakespeare might be prone to write.
Of course it is going to open on time. Why wouldn’t it open on time? Only if the Steve Wynn law suit against the Massachusetts Gaming Commission and its chief investigator succeeds in Las Vegas, where a Nevada Superior Court judge is hearing the case again this week. Wynn prevailed last week in court. If his suit ties things up, as it already has for several weeks, everything gets pushed back, including the long awaited MGC finding Encore suitable to own the casino license which is its right to exist.
The chances of the MGC voting to take away the license is as likely as getting hit by lightning inside South Station. The x is in is the thinking – and I tend to think that’s the right way to look at this. The fix, as I see it, is the coming together in a criminal enterprise many different forces – governors, former governor, powerful law firms, the chairman of the Gaming Commission, a bunch of Boston style felons and goofball near do wells, a small city mayor and the Wynn crew, extremely ambitious eager beavers all working together with tons of money tossed everywhere to gain the lost lane end into heaven.
Everything about the deal is tainted from its beginning. Is it possible for the land to be about bad karma just because hundreds of people likely died of cancer after working for Monsanto inside its chemical death chamber over the years? There are those who believe the site where the casino is going is not simply contaminated with arsenic. They say it is a site cursed the by the Sagamore Indians who lived on that land for probably 500 years before the white man arrived in the early 1600’s. Is it hard to imagine a casino hotel project of that immensity being put on a cursed Indian site? If this isn’t inviting bad luck, what is?
As the project rushes to completion, we just want the doors to open and for the money to start pouring in and for our mayor to figure out ways to enrich himself as he spends all of it down. Maybe the MGC will fine Encore. One big time businessman I know told me the MGC will ne Encore $100 million and tell them if that is paid then everything is OK. When you think about it, why shouldn’t it be OK? No one but the law was murdered in Massachusetts because of the flawed casino land deal parading around as a big tent, over the top circus style fraud from day one.
Can you imagine, there was a MGC Commission chairman who had a business partner in the land deal who he owed several million dollars to if information from a source can be trusted. There were several felons, two who I know fairly well – great guys, probably a bit difficult to do business with or to have a partnership with who might tend to get a bit testy if you owed them money and you hadn’t paid.
On the other hand, there those among them who might do a deal with a handshake, like another of the landowners, Anthony Gattineri. He alleges he did a handshake deal with big time Wynn Resorts/Encore official Rob DiSalvio for $18 million – and Gattineri wants his money, as promised to him. He’s led suit to get his money. Wynn Resorts says his claim is a fairytale and that DiSalvio would never make such a deal.
Oh really? As much as it might sound like a ridiculous story, I believe Gattineri over DiSalvio. I mean, can you imagine owing a business associate $18 million and shaking hands on it? That’s a contract in the state of Massachusetts. Many state laws or the laws of the Gaming Commission are applied or said to have meaning only when they need to be applied.
The suitability issue for the Encore folks/ Wynn Resorts should be an open and shut case. The big shots at Wynn Resorts all knew the secrets about Wynn and the company and they all lied to the Gaming Commission and to the State Police. They lied to everyone all the time. No lie was too big to cover up as long as they got the gaming license. If law ruled, Encore/ Wynn Resorts can’t be granted this license in 1000 years. This is Massachusetts, however, where the casino is just too big to fail.
Wynn Resorts touts itself as a new company now.
The investigation is all about when the license was granted and what came before.
Let’s see what happens.