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Cheers & Jeers

Bill and Susan Guiney know all about what mental-health issues can do to the lives of friends and loved ones.
Bill and Susan Guiney know all about what mental-health issues can do to the lives of friends and loved ones. — Sam McNeish/The Telegram

Cheers: to trimming the tree. Susan and Bill Guiney have a great idea for raising awareness of the fact that many people are grappling with mental health issues during what can be an extra-stressful season — the Christmas holidays. The Guineys, whose family has seen its own share of struggles, is spearheading the decoration of a rugged spruce tree on Highway 10 on the Southern Shore. Members of the public are encouraged to add ornaments. Surely the sight of a decorated tree on the side of the highway will buoy the spirits of anyone who drives by. The road to mental wellness can be a lonely road, but as the Guineys have set out to prove, it doesn’t have to be.


Jeers: to the annual arguments over “Merry Christmas” vs. “Happy Holidays” or “Seasons Greetings.” You’re probably familiar with this debate, with one side complaining about more secular holiday greetings being a deliberate attempt to take Christ out of Christmas, while the other side argues for the right to use the seasonal salutation of their choice. This one’s getting old. If someone wishes you the best of the season, or words to that effect, smile and say, “Right back at ya!”


Jeers: to bad gift ideas. Good Housekeeping, that font of knowledge about products, décor and general good taste, has issued a list of 31 Christmas presents you should never give. Among the most obvious picks? Calendars for a year that’s already passed, cleaning supplies, and donations to a charity the recipient doesn’t support.


Jeers: to life imitating art. Seems the goings-on at the Satin Dolls strip club in New Jersey were a little too close for comfort to the activities made famous in the Bada Bing club of “Sopranos” fame, authorities have concluded. Scenes at Bada Bing were shot inside Satin Dolls. Last week, the Associated Press reported that the New Jersey attorney general is trying to shut Satin Dolls down. Apparently, there are reports of lewd activity involving “audience participation,” and large amounts of cash regularly moving in and out of the club that cannot be accounted for. “Illegal activity was glorified at the ‘Bada Bing’ in the fictional world of Tony Soprano, but it has no place in modern-day New Jersey,” Attorney General Christopher Porrino said.


Jeers: to cost creep. Having a lot of baggage will cost you more if you book one of the economy seats on Delta Air Lines. As if there were few enough perks to flying economy, Delta has hiked the cost of checked luggage on flights to Europe or North Africa that originate in the United States or Canada. One checked bag will now cost you $60, and a second one, $100. One thing’s for certain, the airline’s fees are in step with its motto: “Keep climbing.”

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