A month-by-month projection of what could happen in Montgomery, as seen through the eyes of Post reporters who are well-acquainted with the issues and personalities that dominate the news....
JANUARY: Montgomery County Council vice president Esther Gelman signs a multi-year contract with the county's new cable television franchise to become host of a 24-hour talk show with no guests.
FEBRUARY: Former state Del. Robin Ficker, launching a new crusade to attract smokeless industry to the county, asks the White House to consider basing its MX missile system along the I-270 corridor. In response to Ficker's proposed "dunce-pack," Reagan names Ficker U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of the Transkei.
MARCH: Good news! The long-awaited metro Red Line stop opens at Shady Grove Road. A one-way trip downtown costs $43.50.
APRIL: Montgomery County police chief Bernard Crooke officially changes his name to Bernard Cop. Worried that he might be confused with State Del. Nancy Kopp, Cop proposes that she change her name to Krook.
JUNE: The city of Takoma Park secedes from the Union and declares war on Montgomery and Prince George's counties. Mayor Sam Abbott is named leader of the Takoma Park Liberation Army and begins holding courses for his followers in guerrilla sign-carrying tactics.
JULY: Montgomery School Superintendent Edward Andrews keeps his promise to resign from his job on July 1. On July 2, after an intensive 24-hour search for a replacement, school board president Blair Ewing names non-voting student board member Kurt Hirsch to the $250,000-a-year post.
AUGUST: County Executive Charles Gilchrist travels to Tokyo for three weeks to try to persuade officials of the Sony Corp. to make Montgomery an international headquarters for production of Sony's new computerized digital readout disposable razors. Gilchrist sweetens the deal by promising Sony that Montgomery's 18,000 public employes will wear Walkmans during all work hours.
SEPTEMBER: Angry Potomac residents demand that county leaders attend a neighborhood chablis-and-brie party to hear complaints about malfunctioning trash compactors in their homes. County Council president David Scull, in response to the citizen uproar, cites the efficiency of trash compactors as a means of waste disposal and proposes a "trash tax break" and special trash pickup day for Potomac residents who own them.
OCTOBER: The County Council approves a controversial measure that will allow Montgomery to ship 5,000 pounds of sludge by rail each day to dump sites in West Virginia.In return, West Virginia officials send thousands of hill-dwelling coal miners, laden with coal tailings, to new permanent residences in Wheaton.
NOVEMBER: The Montgomery County school board unanimously approves a performing arts "magnet" program for Montgomery Blair High School in Silver Spring. The school is renamed the Marian Greenblatt School for Kinetic Arts and Leisure Studies.
DECEMBER: Former State Del. Luiz Simmons joins a field of eight Democratic candidates running for president in 1984. Simmons names former Lt. Gov. Samuel Bogley III as his running mate and says he hopes to capture the Kennedy constituency.