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SEE, A GREAT BRIDGE CAN BE BUILT

IF THE CONTROVERSY over the new Peace Bridge leaves you feeling that Western New York can't get its act together to build an award-winning bridge, you're wrong.

A little span in Franklinville that straddles Ischua Creek on Coal Chute's Road won a Prize Bridge Award from the Steel Alliance as one of the nation's best new steel bridges.

"By using high-strength galvanized steel, the weight of the bridge was minimized and protected against corrosion for many years to come," said the citation from the steel trade group. "The bridge was constructed at 67 percent fo the cost of prestressed concrete alternatives with little estimated maintenance expense, reducing future financial burdens to the county government and its taxpayers." The bridge replaced one that had been built in 1941 and had to be closed in 1993 due to deterioration.

A public service announcement

THE FLATULENCE Filter isn't a $39.95 joke, it just seems like one.

The device is a one-inch-thick charcoal-lined seat cushion covered in gray tweed (very dignified) that supposedly traps 90 percent of the hydrogen sulfide gas that is the main cause of the stink from expelled flatus.

It was invented by a guy whose employees threatened to quit if he didn't do something about his gas problem caused by medicines to control his diabetes.

He originally named it the "TooT TrappeR" but that was just too silly for a product that people were already making fun of, such as the newspaper columnist who called it a "catalytic converter for your butt."

It's for sale by UltraTech Products Inc. of Houston at (800) 316-8668.

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