Wireless Deadzones

The annual August arrival of the President on Martha’s Vineyard brings with it a couple plane-loads of black SUVs, burly Secret Service agents, and — according to the New York Times — portable cell phone “towers” to insure the Commander In Chief has four bars on his Blackberry at all times.

Ironic that suddenly the little village of Chilmark has cell phone service when the place is famed for being one of those rare spots where one can take a vacation and never have to worry about what mayhem is unfolding in one’s inbox for the simple truth that you can’t connect. There are no excuses for being unplugged on the western end of MV during the summer — you just can’t get connected there. No wonder I love my annual fly fishing vacation in late September in Menemsha — I can spend six hours baking in the sun waiting for a school of bonito to explode in the channel and not once will the phone ring.

Except of course unless the President is in the area, in which case paradise is temporarily lost to the invasion of the always-on/always-connected tyranny of life in the Blackberry lane:

“But others — especially those who live or vacation in Chilmark because it is remote — rolled their eyes when asked about the improved connection with the outside world.

“A lot of the people who vote here, who live here year-round, couldn’t care less if the people who invade them in the summer get to talk to their Hollywood producers in the middle of the Chilmark store,” Ms. Fox said.

Ms. LoRusso said the lack of cell service “keeps things up-island and rural.” Mr. Ford, who has spent the summer working on a farm here, said: “Personally, I like being disconnected. I like the privacy.”

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