I am pissed off

The title is no joke.

Nothing witty to come or a play on words.

Yes, this is a gardening blog, but I need the outlet for something different today.

I had originally intended to piece together a nice long post about my recent visit to the High Line in New York City. I was casually reviewing the 300+ photos I had taken when my wife called. I immediately could sense the uneasiness and stress in her voice.

High Line post on hold.

Since October we have been fighting the planned natural gas pipeline that is intended to cut through our quiet little country town. It literally came out of nowhere and caught us all off guard. Up until that point, I was vaguely aware of the fact that pipelines of all sorts run underneath us in our daily lives. But living in the “country” with propane gas, a well and septic, you tend to be a little oblivious about these things.

But not anymore.

For now, I won’t get into the arguments against the need for this pipeline or fracking as a whole. I am generally “middle of the road” when it comes to these types of debates. I like to think I weigh both sides evenly in  a logical manner. If you want to call me wishy-washy, go right ahead. That is who I am and I won’t apologize for it.

But this is different.

The pipeline will be a topic I will cover in this blog quite often over the next few weeks/months/years. And with this one, there will be no middle ground. I am fucking pissed (pardon my French).

Because as of today, the PennEast pipeline is now set to completely envelop my property.

We haven’t actually been notified by anyone of this change.  My wife discovered it 2015 style, on Facebook. The map of the pipeline route was recently amended and only because we belong to a private group on Facebook were we made aware of the alterations. Why the route was changed, we still don’t know.

It’s one thing to fight against something when you are only indirectly affected. But damn it is a whole lot different when you are directly impacted. I’m already feeling guilt over not fighting longer and harder before today for all those in the path of this unnecessary 36 inch behemoth. It is not about “not in my yard” but “not at all”. For that I feel regret and will do my best to urge others to look at this the same way.

If you are interested in the specifics of this proposed pipeline, read this.

I am pissed because you are destroying pristene land that so many fought for over the years.

I am pissed because I remember the explosion in Edison, NJ like it was yesterday.

I am pissed because of your shady practices.

I am pissed because the township gets nothing out of this other than a nice scar that will live on for eternity.

I am pissed because if you wipe out my garden or even damage it a bit, you are wiping out a huge part of me.

I am pissed because I still play baseball/softball with my kids in the backyard. I’m not ready for that to end.

I am pissed because you will be messing with my water supply.

I am pissed because money always wins.

I am pissed because I have no idea what the future holds. Can they take my house/property if it goes that far? Even if not, will it ever be the same?

I am pissed because you have put my wife and kids into a panic. How do you explain this to a 9 year old? Her response to hearing about it, “Can we call the police?”

But I will tell you this. I will fight like hell until the very end. I want my kids to know that you never give up, that you never stop fighting for what you believe in.

Game fucking on.

















10 thoughts on “I am pissed off

  1. Tina

    This is appalling. It’s heart-wrenching to have your property invaded and have it’s aesthetics destroyed or altered, after you have put your heart and soul into creating a beautiful space. Your situation has so many negatives attached, including some that have potential to be life threatening (explosion). I can empathize with your situation to an extent, because many years ago my family’s property was taken by “eminent domain” when the powers that be put an interstate highway through it. Our property was totally destroyed in the process. Best wishes to you and your family in this struggle.

    1. jmarkowski Post author

      Thank you Tina! Still trying to sort it all out in my brain. A long ways to go still so we’ll have to just take it day by day and fight the cause like mad.

  2. Michaele Anderson

    Without a doubt, my world would be seriously rattled if such news came to me about my property. I’m so sorry this is going to be happening in your community and, more specifically, to your acreage. Hope some citizen activism on the part of you and your neighbors can make a difference.
    I remember how offended and angry I was in principle by the Supreme Court Kelo decision …where the concept of eminent domain got to be applied to private business getting other people’s land because the result might produce more tax revenue. People lost their homes and, as it turned out, the private business never ended up doing its project after all.

    1. jmarkowski Post author

      That is what kills me. This is a private company. Makes no sense but we are fighting it real well as a community so we will continue to hold out hope.

  3. Kris P

    I’m so sorry to hear this! That “eminent domain” can be applied in ways that destroy people’s beloved homes and properties always comes as a surprise, like a slap in the face, whenever I hear of it. I know there’s a community to the east of us that’s been fighting a freeway extension quite literally for decades. The planned bullet train from LA to SF is under fire too. I hope you and your community are able to work out a solution that doesn’t leave you living under a cloud.

    1. jmarkowski Post author

      Thanks Kris! We will fight the good fight until the bitter end. The concept of eminent domain has really hit home after failing to grasp how it is fair for so many years.

  4. Rose

    Too, too, too familiar. I live in the same kind of circumstances – rural, well, septic & LP, usually grow most of my own food, all organic and heirloom, raise chickens and herbs as well. Found out on Facebook about Kinder Morgan’s plans for our area – the 400+ mile “Northeast Energy Direct”. Some people want to flee, but there’s nowhere to flee to – these monsters are popping up everywhere.
    For over a year and a half we’ve been fighting like hell and the momentum is pushing their plans around. Fight hard, fight long, don’t lose sight of what you’re fighting for!

  5. Kimberly Thomas

    That sucks! I don’t know if it will help but you are vocal and savvy with your blog and you have other bloggers here, so make a big stink, post it everywhere, involve everyone and ask us here and on Facebook and even Pinterest to spread the word, get it in the paper show them your beautiful yard & kids playing ball and make someone cry. This is the kind of thing that could go viral.

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