After an awkward, 15-second period of silence, Winters thankfully moved away from the podium, only to be replaced by 32-year-old Laurel Hale, who seemed eager to prove to every citizen of New Bedford that she had the brainpower of an autistic dog.

"I'm just going to say one thing because I don't want to take up too much of anyone's time," said Hale as her 6-month-old daughter pawed at the microphone. Hale then somehow managed to link the synthetic-turf issue to the lack of places to sit in public areas, her inability to get the buttons at the crosswalk to work, and the apparent overabundance of cable television channels.

Added Hale: "Also, Councilman Reed, you need to get us out of Iraq. Now."