OLAF FUB SEZ: It was Ronald Reagan who, during his first inaugural address on Jan. 20, 1981, observed: "Government is not the solution to our problem. Government is the problem." . . .
ON THIS DAY -- In 1777, the Marquis de Lafayette, a 19-year-old French nobleman, was made a major-general in the American Continental Army . . . In 1953, Sen. Robert A. Taft of Ohio, known as "Mr. Republican," died in New York at the age of 63. . . .
THE SECRET to living to be 100 years old, according to Dominic "The Duke" Scappechio, who reached the century mark today, is the Good Lord, good doctors and at least two glasses of good Italian red wine a day.
Scappechio, who was born in San Fele, near Naples, Italy, came to this country in 1906. Known for his great memory, he remembers sailing from the Bay of Naples as a boy of nine as Mount Vesuvius smoldered in the background. He also recalls arriving at Ellis Island on May 2 before coming to Buffalo's West Side, where he grew up.
He pursued a career as a sheet metal worker with Eastern Signs for many years until he retired at the age of 67. He designed and made many of the big store and other signs still in use today. Friends and relatives report that in addition to a keen memory, which enables him to remember every card and gin rummy play, he reads the newspaper from cover to cover, including the want ads, and loves to watch bowling and boxing events on television. He also enjoys walking.
Sixty relatives and friends surprised him Monday night with a birthday party at Mama Rose's Restaurant. In attendence were a daughter, Elizabeth "Betty" Isker, who came from Sun City, Calif., for the occasion, and his son, Anthony, of Buffalo. His wife, the former Mary Campanella, died in 1963. . . .
TASTE OF LANCASTER -- New items like fried bologna and onions, buffalo shrimp, clams and lobster dainties will be for sale along with some old favorites like souvlaki, pizza, wings, hot dogs and ice cream at the fourth annual Taste of Lancaster from 11:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday.
The festival, sponsored by the Village and Town of Lancaster, will be held on Central Avenue near Broadway. Food will be available at prices ranging from 50 cents to $2.50.
In addition, the Erie County Masons will conduct the Child ID Program, free to any child accompanied by an adult. Each child will receive a professional video tape, which takes about 15 minutes. Taping will take place from noon to 5 p.m. on the second floor of the Lancaster Municipal Building. The program is sponsored by Depew Lodge 823. For more event information, call Tammy Derkovitz at 684-4891. . . .
HELPING THE HOSTESS -- Aunt Millie's Restaurant, at Routes 5 and 20 in Irving, will hold a bakery sale of their famous pies and a chicken barbecue Sunday to help out Shirley "the hostess" Thurston who worked there for 10 years until she suffered a severe stroke four weeks ago. The bake sale will be from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and the barbecue starts at 11. Proceeds and donations will go toward her medical bills. She is now a patient at Great Lakes Rehabilitation in Erie, Pa. . . .
HAPPY BIRTHDAY -- Mary Lou Miller, Roger Heck, Stefanie Czopp, Valerie Arnone, Patrick Schweinsburg, Ron Smith, Irene Ruszaj, Edwin Sasiadek, Ryan Booth, Roberta Kuhn, Walter L. Rooth, Emanuel Martin, Marge Safe, Paul Farr, Michael Holewka, Patti Kelleher, Shirley Wortman, John Babiez, Esther Pringle, George A. Scherer, Kim Schueler, Shannon Kurzanski, Sue Faulise, Mary Schemm, Terry Sabia, Shawn Gaskill, Peter Scott Fisher, Joe Trimper, Audrey Jacobs, Jim Kaczmarek, Helen Szesel, Michael Joseph Barone, Vincent Abbarno, Alec Wodowski, Regina Marsealek, Rose Cannon, Alison Pace.