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As Niagara Falls / Tales of the strange but true

Busting chops 101

While the tenor of any school board meeting is normally serious, they are not totally devoid of humor.

At a recent Niagara Falls School Board meeting, Angelo Massaro, the district's lawyer, drew quite a few laughs while quizzing Kathleen A. Brooks on what personal information would be contained about each of the city's public high school graduates in her company's proposed compiling of a Niagara Falls High School directory.

The directory would include the names of surviving graduates of all classes.

Massaro, the city's Urban Reneal Agency director in the 1970s, asked what information would be included about him "as an '83 graduate?"

That prompted Lawrence Martinez, an administrator on special assignment, to ask Massaro: "Was that the 1800s or 1900s?"

Later in the meeting, when Martinez got a figure wrong while making a presentation on grants the district will receive this year, Massaro got him back, uttering an incredulous, "You're the math person?"


Hail to the chief

While the United States is weeks away from choosing a new president, Niagara University students who live in Varsity Village have made their decision on the person to lead them on campus.

Jessica Prinzing, a junior from Webster, has been elected mayor of the village, located on the Lewiston campus.

Voting was open to residents who live in the six houses that comprise Varsity Village. Prinzing faced competition from four others: Adam Harris, Kevin Jennings, Natalie Titerence and Franklin Moore. Turnout was good, with votes cast by 56 of the 90 students who live in the village.

The election is a return of an old tradition at NU, said Sheila Hausrath, vice president of student life. The last time Varsity Village had a mayoral election was in the 1960s.

Local celebs who showed up for the victory celebration included the Rev. Joseph Levesque, president of Niagara University; Sister Nora Gatto, executive director of mission and ministry; and Mayor Paul A. Dyster of Niagara Falls.

And there was never even a hint of a hanging chad.


What's the holdup?

Give a guy a little time.

Peter F. Kay, the new economic development director for the City of Niagara Falls, has a big job ahead. The City Council was quick to remind him of that on his first day on the job last week.

When introduced to the public during a Council meeting, Kay had just wrapped up his first eight hours as a city employee.

"Tell us what he's done so far," Councilman Chris Robins joked. "I was hoping to see a big change downtown, and nothing yet."


Return of the dead

If you liked the television series "Wonderfalls" -- and there weren't very many of you -- In Touch magazine's senior lifestyle editor has some reasonably good news for you.

A couple of its characters are back from TV's dead.

"Wonderfalls" aired on Fox four years ago and was about Jaye Tyler, a Niagara Falls gift store clerk who could speak with inanimate objects.

"Actually they'd talk to her -- and make her do good deeds. She loathed the burden," Jarett Wieselman wrote in a brief piece posted online Monday. "It was one of the wittiest shows I've ever loved. Naturally, it was canceled."

The good news is that the show's creator, Bryan Fuller, is having more success with his latest project, "Pushing Daisies," on ABC. Wieselman reports that Lee Pace, who plays the piemaker on the show, was Jaye's brother Aaron on "Wonderfalls," and Diana Scarwid, Mother Superior on the new show, was Jaye's mom, Karen.

We're not sure, but it seems Fuller must have spent a bit too much time in the wax museums on Clifton Hill.

With contributions from Paul Westmoore, Denise Jewell Gee, Bill Michelmore and Scott Scanlon of the News Niagara Bureau.

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