Jack TenneyExtra Point

by Jack Tenney, Publisher

April 2014

How many streets can you name?

In the little city I grew up in, the north-south streets on the west side were named for presidents. It’s probably grown a lot since I left. The last paved street was Taft, I think. The east-west streets north of Broadway were named for trees: Maple, Elm, Oak, Cypress, Pine and like that. Apparently cities on the flat plains could be quite logical naming a grid of streets; not so easy other places.

Burlington has some pretty straight streets. Logical names, too: Church, College, Bank.

There are lots of famous streets: Wall, Bourbon, Beacon, and 42nd to name a few. Park, Commonwealth, and 5th are famous avenues.

Then there are boulevards — Sunset, Wilshire, and Santa Monica; roads — Shelburne, Williston and Tobacco; and lanes, places, parkways, circles, and probably more.

Vermont towns often have a School Street and maybe a Dump  Road. A few still have a Poor Farm Road. I like the sound of Shunpike or maybe the thought of it.

Main Street is often used in contrast to Wall Street. Just about everywhere will you find a Main but never, I bet, will there be a Maine and a Main Street in same city or town.

The job of gazetteers or GPS mapping providers is to keep up with all the additions, deletions, and changes to automobile routes. 

Finally, I get to the point — the extra point. To celebrate April Fool’s throughout the year, rely exclusively on your GPS to get you where you’re going even if you know how to get there. You will discover that the whole idea was invented by the fictional Vermont farmer who said, “You can’t get there from here.”