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December 5, 2014     Post-Gazette
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Page 2 POST-GAZETTE, DECEMBER 5, 2014 b ProfEdmund Nostra Turiello A weekly column highlighting some of the more interesting aspects of our ancestr)'.., our lineage.., our roots. HADES Readers are reminded that the.family tree of mythology started with Chaos, the yawning abyss which marked the beginning of all things. Out of Chaos came the Primeval Beings called Night, Day, Upper Atmo- sphere, and Heavens. Then came: the Titans, those giant deities who were the fore- runners of the gods. The Titans were overthrown and their power seized by the Olympia.n gods (Zeus, his brothers, his sisters, and seven of h{s children). Dur- ing recent issues we exam- ined the legends of Zeus, chief and most powerful of those gods. We also learned about Jupiter, Hera (wife of Zeus), and Juno (wife of Jupiter). Our attention is now directed to Hades, a mytho- Iogicalname which identi- fies both a person and a place. As a person, Hades was brother to Zeus, He became the ruler of the lower world after he and the other gods overthrew the Titans. To- gether with his queen Persephone, he ruled over the infemal regions and over the ghosts of the dead. Mytho- logical stories change from time to time, however. Hades was originally thought to be the one who conducted the souls of the dead to the lower world in his chariot. Those who were reluctant to disem- bark were beaten off with his staff. Hades was considered to be the enemy of all life, heartless and relentless in his assigned tasks, and hated, accordingly by gods and men. In works of-art, this god was represented as resembling his brothers Zeus and Posei- don, but with gloomy features, the key to the gates of the lower world in his hand, and his watchful dog Cerberus at his side. The most celebrated of the myths about Hades was known as "The Rape of Persephone." This legend told of the beautiful Perse- phone, daughter of the god- dess Demeter, playing with her companions, gathering lilies and violets when Hades saw her. It was love at first sight; he immediately car- . ried her off as she screamed for help, but hercries were in vain. When Hades and his "captive reached the River Cyane, it opposed his pas- sage, so he struck the river bank with his trident and the earth opened to provide his passage to the lower world. This kidnapping of Perse- phone, together with the nine year search by her mother, Demeter, form the most popular aspects of her legend. It also explains why Demeter, the goddess of agriculture, punished earth, causing it to remain unpro- ductive during a portion of the year. Regarding the abduction of this goddess, I must remind our readers, who are also art lovers, about the beautiful Bernini statues that are now standing in Rome's Borghese Gallery. Attention is specifi- cally directed toward the one entitled "The Rape of Prosper- ine" (the Roman name for Persephone} which shows Pluto (Hades) in the act of abducting the young goddess. For those persons who are not familiar with the works of Lorenzo Bernirti, may I remind you that he was the fourteenth architect to be employed in t'he construction of St. Peter's Basilica in Rome. He is credited with the design of that church's entrance plaza, one of the exterior fountains, the "Baldacchino" (canopy) over the high altar and the black marble twisted columns that support the 700 ton canopy. NEXT WEEK: Hades, the Place RUNNING OUT OF GIFT IDEAS? HOWABOUTA COPY OF... My cookbook makes a great gift for the person who has everything. I have several easy holiday recipes. Dedicated to my Nonna who inspired me to cook. Mangial! Mangia!! Buon Natale!/ Now expanded and enhanced in its 11th printing with 10,000 copies sold, SEND $12 to FRANCENA. 125 Boyce Road, Centerville, OH 45458 937-433-7313 - fslyd@aol.com i Real Estate Matt6o Gallo Appraisals Sales & Rentals 376 North Street * Boston, MA 02113 (617) 523-2100 * Fax (617) 523-3530 Res Put)iica by David Trumbull A year ago in this space I wrote about the Taxi Con- sultant. Report commis- sioned by the City of Boston and prepared by independent consultants. The report found poor performance in response to trip requests, unmet demand during peak hours, and confusion about the fares. It was, in other words, a recitation of the same problems with taxi ser- vice in Boston that residents have been subject to for de- cades. The taxi industry is one of the most heavily regulated industries in the City of Bos- ton, yet in spite of {or be- cause of?) all that regula- tion, the chronic problem of poor service persists. Well, what the city cannot, or will not, do with regulation and enforcement --get decent car service for the people of Boston -- the private sector is doing. It's called Uber and Lyft. These services, which respond promptly to a re- quest with a clean comfort- able car, a friendly and help- ful driver; and the conve- nience of paying the modest fee with a credit card, are threats to the taxi industry. Taxi drivers fear that Uber and Lyft will' take away busi- ness, but even more at risk are the owners of taxi me- dallions, the permits to op- erate as a taxi in Boston. Medallions were instituted in the 1930s and capped at 1,525 and not increased in number until the late 1990s. The number now is 1,825. According to a story in the Washington Post, a Boston taxi medallion can cost as much as 8700.000. Obvi- ously, medallion owners have a major investment and they don't want to see that diluted by alternative ride programs. Competition Uber Alles This past Monday there was a hearing on the mat- ter at the City Council. I was pleased to see in the Boston Globe's report of the hearing, that Councilor Bal LaMattina said he has of- ten encountered cab drivers who refuse to drive him to East Boston, a problem he said affects the entire neighborhood. The Globe story further quoted him as saying: "It's not right, and I hear it from a .lot of my con- stituents." LaMattina had a large stack of e-mails he had received from Uber supp0rt- ers. Other councilors ex- pressed a perceived need to introduce some regulation of Uber and Lyft. Medallion owners are, what we call in economic terms, "rent,seekers," who have invested millions of dollars in the existing taxi industry, an industry that consumers dislike. They are I DIAMONDS i ROLEX ESTATE JEWELRY Bought & Sold Jewelers Exch. Bldg. Jim (617) 263-7766 ST, JUDE AND ST. ANTHONYNOVENA May the Sacred Heart of Jesus be adored, glorified, loved and preserved throughout the world now and for- ever. Sacred Heart of Jesus pray for us. St. Jude, worker of miracles, pray for us. St. Jude, help of the hopeless, pray for us. St. Anthony most loving protector and wonder worker, pray for us. Say this prayer 9 times a day and by the8th day your prayer will be answered. It has never been known to fail. Publication must be promised. My prayers have been answered. Favor received. F.M.V. PRAYER TO ST. JUDE May the Sacred Heart of Jesus be adored, glorified, loved and pre- sewed throughout the world now and forever. Sacred Heart of Jesus pray for us. St. Jude, worker of miracles, pray for us. St. Jude, help of the hopeless, pray for us. Say this prayer 9 times a day and by the 8th day your prayers will be answered. It has never been known to fail. Publication must be premised. My prayers have been answered. A.T.P. not a sympathetic lot in this fight. Taxi drivers complain- ing about Uber and Lyft are free to go drive for Uber and Lyft. That is if they can pass the minimum requirements of those services, which are stricter than those for being a Boston cab driver. It is hard to feel much sympathy for them. Politicians may try to save the existing taxi indus- try, but the people -- young and old, liberal and conser- vative, black and white -- are demanding services like Uber and Lyft. Ultimately rent-seekers, drivers who are unsuited for a service industry, and politicians seeking to preserve the sta- tus quo will not be able to re- sist the will of the people. Uber and Lyft are here to stay, at least until some- thing better comes along We are not going back to the old taxi industry monopoly of door-to-door trans ortation. # LUCIA RISTORANTE & BAR Traditional Italian Cuisine 415 Hanover Street, Boston 617,367,2353 11 MountVernon Street, Winchester 781.729.0515 PPivo|e func|ion J00ooms fo, ant/C)ccosion Ckristeninq . B,d00l SGwe, BoI00. B00dMou. B000000ov00me.t, Etc. Donato Fraffaroli donato@ luciaboston.com www.luciaristorante.com Look who just arrived into your neighborhood 00Bud9e t LOCATED AT" 270 ATLANTIC AVENUE, BOSTON PHONE 617.227.0279 617.227.0784 FAX 617.227.0641 PLEASE EMAIL US AT digiacomoofboston@gmail, com to receive our weekly special Contact and ask for our NEW NORTH END NEIGHBORHOOD SPECIAL