April is the cruelest…

Too easy

The sun was warm but the wind was chill.
You know how it is with an April day
When the sun is out and the wind is still,
You’re one month on, in the middle of May.
But if you so much as dare to speak,
A cloud comes over the sunlit arch,
A wind comes off a frozen peak,
And you’re two months back, in the middle of March.


Robert Frost
from Two Tramps in Mud Time (1926)

The first of April is the day we remember what we are the other 364 days of the year.


Mark Twain

April is here, after March flew by. It started with some snow that stuck around for a day or so. As I write this, it’s five days later and 77 degrees Fahrenheit. 

April is a month of renewal and growth. The crocuses are fading away, but the daffodils are up and the forsythia is blooming. For the gardeners among you, I note that Calvary UM Church is having its annual plant sale. They have both ornamental and vegetable plants for sale, but you must order by April 18. Delivery is in May, right around Mother’s Day (which I’m told is the magic date for safe planting). The sale flyer is being distributed in one of our e-Newsletters, courtesy of Linda Ehrlich. I believe Emmanuel Episcopal Church also has an annual plant sale, and as soon as I get details on that, I’ll spread the word like fine manure.

Speaking of which, the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy just held its “What the Muck” cleanup event for Lake Elizabeth in the Allegheny Commons. As most of you know, that area has been be-fowled by the flock of geese that congregate there like politicians around your e-mail inbox in election season. Walking through the sidewalks near Lake Elizabeth is like dancing between the raindrops, but with a lot more downside. To combat this menace, the Allegheny Commons Initiative (chaired by our own Mariana Whitmer), along with the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy, Northside Leadership Conference, and the City of Pittsburgh, is hiring a crew from the US Department of Agriculture. I’m sure we’ll get an update on the geese situation at the next AWCC membership meeting. Until then, stay vigilant and wipe your feet.

By the way, that next AWCC virtual membership meeting will be at 7:30 pm on Tuesday, April 13. It will be an exciting evening of geese stories from the PPC’s Erin Tobin, true crime reports from Zone One’s Officer Michael Burford, and general civic engagement on a scale not seen since last month. I hope to see you then. Zoom meeting details are published in this very issue of the Gazette.

One last note before I go: April is also the time of year when we take nominations for Allegheny West’s Neighbor of the Year. I’m sure you know a neighbor who has gone to great lengths to make Allegheny West a better place to live and work. I’ll be soliciting names at the membership meeting, but please don’t be shy about sending an e-mail or slipping a note through the mail slot at 806 Western Avenue.

I hope you have a wonderful April.

Bob Griewahn
President, AWCC