Monday 3 p.m. at Mocha Mott’s, Hamburger is seated at the table southeast of the door. Normally Hamburger is the town’s unofficial mayor, greeting one and all, and directing tourists, from various benches in Post Office Square. His real name is cloaked under the utmost secrecy; it’s even possible he’s in the Witness Protection Program, although if that’s the case, his handlers must despair that their ward keeps so high a profile. It’s not that Hamburger wears flamboyant clothes; he’s usually outfitted in relaxed-fit sweat togs, earth-toned sweaters and a scarf. But his charm and unflagging interest in fellow citizens keeps him at the center of town social life. Come to think of it, you rarely venture outdoors, in any season in Oak Bluffs, without bumping into him.

Last year Hamburger told everyone he would furthermore be known as Ice. Cool name, no pun intended, but Hamburger didn’t take the action of enforcing it. I’ve always noticed that those making name changes need to jump on people the first twelve or eighteen times they blab the old name. “I’ll try to call you Owen, Tommy,” I remember telling my brother some 30 years ago.

As I gab with Icy Burger, my friend, Warren Gosson arrives. “Do you know Hamburger?” I ask, which in Oak Bluffs is like saying “Have you seen the Pope?” in St. Peter’s Square.

“Of course!” Warren says, “But now he’s the Iceman!”

I apologize to Hamburger: “I’m too old to register a new name.”

He nods with sad understanding. “I was nicknamed Hamburger because I once said, ‘What am I? Chopped meat?’ and I think I’m just going to be stuck with the name forever.”

Warren, who has long worked in law enforcement, slips me an aged paperback book about American cults and communes, a subject we’d taken up on Facebook. This is a man, having worked for local law and even FBI cases over the years, clearly knows where all the drugs have been stashed and all the bodies buried. He may even be aware of Hamburger’s real name.

It feels more dramatic running into people at this time of year when it’s just us and we can wax nostalgic. On Tuesday afternoon at the post office, I encounter an old friend, Dr. Jason Lew, deliverer of thousands of Island babies, recently retired, world-traveler and third world medical volunteer, husband of Paris-bred Injy, and father of three impressive young women, Olivia, Isabel and Sophie. Jason is also a Red Sox fan of the pathological variety; don’t get him started, you’ll have to hear all about Big Papi and that Japanese pitcher.

I tell Jason I recently visited a friend at the hospital and experienced a pang of long-ago memory, an à la recherche du temps perdu, if you’ll allow me, as I bicycled past the three-sided wing of the old plant that once housed Jason’s OB/gyn practice. All women are sappy about their memories of pregnancy, and surely we all share that with him. It occurs to me that maybe he should hand out chocolate lollipops — or Prada bracelets? — to all his sentimental mothers.

So some 20 minutes later, I encounter Jason again outside the back door of Reliable. This time he’s deep in conversation with a woman who looks to be about my age. I gesture at Jason and ask the woman, “Did you have a baby with this man too?”

Thank goodness there’s no one around to misinterpret this question!

The woman turns out to be Barbara Bassett, who lives in Aquinnah, is Jason’s cousin and is responsible for bringing him to the Island back in the early 80s! He hugs her gratefully.

Listen, if you and your sweetie want a romantic weekend, and you’re heading up to Chilmark Chocolates, treat yourselves to another Valentine’s jaunt, and stop at the Chilmark Bank where my sistah soul mate from the western end of the island, Lisa Vanderhoop, will be selling her funny doggy cards (she does the smashing Sea Dogs Calendar), also love-themed cards with Marilyn Monroe, Elvis, and women’s porn, e.g. photos of cute young men vacuuming.

Calling all artists: Friends of the Oak Bluffs Library have organized a contest to submit your drawing for a new Friends logo. Deadline is March 5, and the winner will be announced on April 1. The winning logo will be used on the library Web site and on the future Friends Web site. To find out more, log on to libraryfriendsof@gmail.com or stop in at the library.

Two more adult education classes have been added to the roster, both to occur on Thursday, Feb. 16 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., each priced at $35. The first is Brazilian/Portuguese cooking taught by Elton Nascimento, the second Understanding Medicare given by Mary Leddy. To find out more and to register, log on to acemv.org or email director Lynn Ditchfield at lynn@acemv.org. You may also call the ever-helpful Lynn at 774 310-1131.