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Off Main Street (Aug. 20): Not-so-great expectorations

Salivating for justice

It’s not unusual for folks in the midst of a domestic dispute to vent and, often, cops (or their vehicles) wind up on the receiving end.

But there is at least one form of expression, even in moments of outrage, that Lancaster Town Justice Jeremy A. Colby finds unacceptable – spitting on a police car.

Earlier this month, a man accused of just such an act walked out of Colby’s court with an adjournment in contemplation of dismissal, but with one condition.

He had to wash, not one, but two police cars.

The judge declined comment on the case, but acknowledged his preference for penalties that, whenever possible, compensate people for damages or injuries.

“I’m a big restitution guy,” said Colby.

Suitable promotion

Officer Michael J. Striejewske has been promoted as the Cheektowaga Police Department’s newest detective, but he was missing just one thing: the requisite plainclothes wardrobe.

At a recent Town Board meeting, Chief David J. Zack outlined Striejewske’s accomplishments since joining the force, then added, “I think the only knock on Mike is that he only owns one suit. Is this the suit?”

The audience in Council Chambers laughed, and Striejewske acknowledged it was.

But don’t expect to see a rumpled Columbo-type around town.

“We’re going to get him over to Men’s Wearhouse,” Zack said.

Case closed.

Hawking black market wings

Did you know there’s a black market for chicken wings?

We didn’t, until we saw a pair of fascinating articles on about a father and son who stole wings from a Syracuse restaurant, where they worked as cooks.

The father, Paul Rojek, and his son, Joshua, billed about $41,000 in wing orders to the Twin Trees Too’s business account between February 2015 and November 2015, the Onondaga County Sheriff’s Office told the website, under an article headlined “Hot wings.”

The Rojeks then resold the wings on the street, or to other restaurants, at a reduced price, from a warehouse or from the back of a pickup truck, the website reported.

Sounds appetizing, right?

The senior Rojek pleaded guilty and was sentenced last week to one to three years in prison, during which County Judge Anthony Aloi observed:

“Expensive chicken wings.”

The younger Rojek pleaded guilty this week to his role in the fowl crimes – and will be sentenced in October.

A hot message

Church signs have become hot spaces for religious sanctuaries to self-advertise or convey a pithy message, an inspirational verse from the Bible or to make a colorful observation about the state of humankind.

Of course, sometimes it’s just an observation about the weather.

That, too, can be as witty as a message about metaphysics.

A sign outside St. Paul’s Catholic Church in Kenmore this week attests to how clever they can be, given the oppressive heat that has overtaken the region recently.

“Too hot to keep changing sign. Sin bad. Jesus good. Details inside,” the sign outside the church at 33 Victoria Blvd. reads.

The phrases that wind up on the St. Paul’s church sign – which is usually changed once a week – are consensus efforts of the church secretary, business manager for the church, his son and Father Joseph Vetter, pastor of St. Paul’s parish.

“We had a coffee hour once a month ... and they put up: ‘Have a cup of joe with Father Joe,’” said Vetter.

“It’s always different, but usually it’s a little humorous,” he added.

The Diocese of Buffalo apparently found the sign humorous enough to post a photograph of it on the diocese’s Facebook page.

Off Main Street is written by Harold McNeil, with contributions by Phil Fairbanks, Joseph Popiolkowski and Stephen T. Watson. email:

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