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Off Main Street / The offbeat side of the news

The lovin' forkful

Really want to give that special someone a Valentine's Day gift to get the heart racing?

Forget roses. Try carrot ginger soup with basil foam.

That's the sage advice from Sample Restaurant, which is telling romantics how to spice up their love life.

In a news release, the Allen Street restaurant says it is offering a $45 aphrodisiac-laden dinner for its Valentine's Day weekend menu. (The italicized items are those designed to put diners in the mood for love.)

"Cayenne and passion fruit margarita; an hors d'oeuvres trio of: carrot ginger soup with basil foam, arugula salad with roasted pistachios and raspberry vinaigrette and savory caramelized onion and leek custard; followed by a small plate entree of: seared petit filet mignon with Parisian potatoes, fennel marmalade, almond tempura fried asparagus and red wine jus; and finished with a rose and strawberry pavlova for dessert."

If you're not in a serious relationship before dinner, you will be once the check comes.


Light reading

Suspended Buffalo Detective Dennis A. Delano, the budding co-author of an upcoming book, "Bike Path Rapist," proved at his disciplinary hearing he is no speed reader.

Hearing Officer Thomas N. Rinaldo kept taking recesses to allow Delano time to plod through a 46-page transcript of two interviews he did with WBEN Radio last year before answering a question about a statement he made on Page 37.

But when it became apparent that the entire hearing might be spent waiting for Delano to finish reading the transcript, a member of the audience offered Rinaldo a suggestion on how to avoid wasting more time.

And it wasn't just any member of the peanut gallery. It was Lynn M. DeJac, who spent more than 13 years in state prison before being exonerated of charges she murdered her daughter.

Perturbed, DeJac suggested that the city lawyer, Diane T. O'Gorman, direct Delano to the page in question, read that page alone and answer the question.

Rinaldo halted the recess, and Delano answered the question.


Power grab in Clarence?

Clarence Councilman Joseph Weiss has a cost-cutting idea that would save taxpayers plenty: Have the Town Board take over the school district.


Weiss said the Town Board, which comprises an attorney, a successful businessman, a CPA and the manager of a development company, is a bevy of talent that would work at bargain-basement prices to run the schools.

"We've got a great skill set," said Weiss, who has a doctorate in educational management.

Supervisor Scott Bylewski said neither yea nor nay to the idea, instead offering only that he is open to any suggestions that improve both the schools and the board's relationship with the district.

School Superintendent Thomas Coseo points out that the idea is not permitted under state law. Aside from that, barely suppressing a laugh, he said: "No comment. No comment."


Independence Day

Speaking of ideas not going anywhere . . .

The Town of Aurora always has its hands full cleaning up after its popular July 3 fireworks event each year.

So, when officials were discussing ways to help clean up the mess in Hamlin Park the following day, East Aurora Trustee Ernest Scheer had an idea.

"Have inmates from the Collins Correctional Facility come out . . . ," Scheer said, figuring it also would save on the town payroll end of things. "They're not doing anything on the Fourth of July, unless they're having a barbecue."

As debate went on during the meeting, Scheer insisted he was serious about his idea.

But village and town staff pointed out that that couldn't be done, because government workers could file a grievance under their union contract.
Written by Bruce Andriatch, with contributions from Niki Cervantes, Karen Robinson and Lou Michel.


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