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REPORTERS' NOTEBOOK

OLAF FUB SEZ: According to German writer Thomas Mann (1875-1955), "Time cools, time clarifies; no mood can be maintained quite unaltered through the course of hours." . . .

ON THIS DAY -- In 1066, William the Conqueror invaded England to claim the English throne . . . In 1542, Portuguese navigator Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo arrived at present-day San Diego . . . In 1781, American forces in the Revolutionary War began their siege of Yorktown Heights, Va. . . . In 1850, flogging was abolished as a form of punishment in the U.S. Navy . . . In 1939, during World War II, Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union agreed on a plan to partition Poland . . . In 1994, more than 900 people died when an Estonian ferry capsized and sank in the Baltic Sea. . . .

No Ear For Music
I wished I could play an instrument,

A fiddle, a banjo or just a drum.

Alas, such was my musical talent,

All I could do was kazoo or hum.

-- Walter S. Slon
GOOD CAUSE -- Salvatore's Italian Gardens in Depew will be the site Sunday for a dinner gala to benefit Villa Maria College. The event, held annually by the President's Council of the college, will begin with cocktails at 5:30 p.m.

Jean Rogowski and Michael Biedny are in charge of the evening. Tickets, at $200 a couple, may be purchased by calling Villa Maria's development office. . . .

SIGNING -- The Niagara Frontier Center for Independent Living at 1522 Main St. in Niagara Falls will be offering American sign language classes at all levels beginning next Monday and continuing through the week of Dec. 6.

The Beginner A class will be held from 3:30 to 5 p.m. Mondays. The Intermediate A class will be held from 3:30 to 5 p.m. Wednesdays. Advance 2 class will meet from 1:30 to 3 p.m. Fridays and the Advance 2 class from 3 to 4:30 p.m. the same day. The class fee is $15, with $35 needed for two required texts, which can be used for all levels. For more information or to register, call 284-2452. . . .

HE'S STILL AROUND -- George Bailey, who retired last week as director of communications for the Niagara Parks Commission in Niagara Falls, Ont., was a good friend to reporters in need.

Bailey was infinitely knowledgeable on just about any goings-on in Niagara Falls, Ont., especially as they related to tourism, development and local history, as well as the extensive parks system. Bailey also was generously available and accessible with his time, expertise and home phone number. He was never known to not return a phone call promptly, even up to and including a phone call asking for a comment about his retirement. He was even known to take reporters' calls on his cell phone while eating dinner in a local restaurant.

He rarely had to look up an answer. He always had it on the tip of his tongue. And, for stories outside of his vast sphere of knowledge, he always had a pretty good suggestion of whom to contact.

Friends are wishing Bailey well with his new public relations, television/video production company named in typical Bailey style, "It's a Wonderful Life Productions." The title is borrowed from the 1947 Frank Capra movie in which the lead character named George Bailey finds out how important his life is to his home town. . . .

HAPPY BIRTHDAY -- Bruce Wawrzyniak, Phyllis Panek, Joe Kremblas Jr., Suzanne Tiranno, Kelly Liesel Kaczor, Michael Boehringer, Edward Urbank, Philip Fenwick, Rita Houseknecht, Raymond Braun, Dr. Laura C. Prendergast, Irma Spaulding, Terry McMullen, Kirstie Marie Dlugosz, Sabrina Hudson, Jean Wickett, David Storck, Adam Hudyniak, Michelle Gwodz, Judi Oleksy, Matthew Orzechowski, Edward Taton III.

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