Finally, a hack for the “four-foot rule”; April 31 eyed for opening of Wellesley’s newest eatery; study of rotary to go round in circles?

Latest essential Wellesley driving accessory—four feet

Heads up, all you cyclists, pedestrians, and motorists—Massachusetts House Bill #5103, otherwise known as Mass DOT’s “Four-Foot Rule”—is marking one full year in effect in Swellesley (and other places).  If you’ve been otherwise distracted while driving— whether by phone-focused pedestrians, wildly wandering turkeys, or the visual cacophony of signage around the Great Plain Ave./Wellesley Ave. rotary—we remind you that motorists are legally required to ensure a distance of four feet between their vehicle and “vulnerable road users.”  Really? On our narrow, curvy roads?  Where, you ask, are we supposed to find this “four feet”?

We found the answer—and the four feet—at the Wellesley Police Department. Available to every resident who presents a valid license, these re-useable sets of four feet, made of compostable plastic, provide a convenient way to ensure the safety of our vulnerable road users while providing an airtight alibi for law-abiding drivers. Because many of our scenic roadways are both narrow and lacking shoulders, the WPD also offers multi-use prosthetic shoulders suitable for all locations.

This program is funded through a grant from the Preservation of Community Members Committee.


New restaurant to open at RDF

We love the RDF—especially when the Give and Take Area opens in Spring. We de-accession our museum-quality home goods, survey the merch brought by fellow residents, and catch up with our neighbors while enjoying the sunshine and (mostly) fresh air. We browse for books at the Book Exchange, perhaps taking a seat on a bench to preview a chapter as we await a fresh carload of trade paperbacks.

April Fool Wellesley, 2024

After all this family-friendly activity—and after separating our recyclables and tossing our trash—who wouldn’t crave a tasty bite or a refreshing beverage? Inspired by the classic cookbook Quick and Easy Dump Dinners, long-time Wellesley residents Ima Hunkri and Yura Hamm plan to open the high-concept “Dump Stir Diner,” at the RDF (in the unused space above the Book Exchange), on April 31st, Daily specials will be served with a side of Cabbage Patch Kidslaw and a cup of There’s-a-Fly-in-My soup. Enjoy a signature Walktail as you stroll the grounds.


Distracted driving, distracting roadways

The most reviled driving venue in the history of Swellesley, the Great Plain Avenue rotary, will soon be the subject of a study co-conducted by Babson College and Wellesley College professors. Combining theoretical and granular scholarship in the fields of Commuter Science, Speed Literacy, and Remedial Marketing, researchers will focus on devising the means to measure the effect of distracted driving on a pre-existing combination of questionable design, cryptic signage, and Driver Education Memory Loss Syndrome.

Rte. 135 rotary construction
Great Plain/Wellesley Ave. rotary, under construction, 2020

In order to ramp up distraction levels, a series of meticulously calibrated activities will take place on the grassy center portion of the rotary from 8am to 6pm during the last week of April.  Professional sound engineers will ensure maximum din. As per The Babson/Wellesley Consortium, the schedule will include:

Monday: Irish Step-Dancing Relay Teams
Tuesday: Multi-lingual Poetry Slam-O-Rama
Wednesday: The Bagpipers of Bahookie
Thursday: The Leaf-Blower Brigade plays “Brigadoon”
Friday: Karaoke Opera

We hope you enjoyed this satirical post by Carolyn Faye Fox. A cast member of  “SaysYou!” since the inception of NPR’s nationally-syndicated word game quiz show (which aired for over 25 years and is still available as a podcast) and former Contributing Editor at The Improper Bostonian. Carolyn is a food and travel writer whose work has appeared in formats ranging from hard-copy magazines to online platforms.


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