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Off Main Street / The offbeat side of the news

A league of her own

Rep. Kathy Hochul didn't have much time to prepare for Thursday night's highly anticipated softball game between female members of Congress and members of the media in Washington.

So the newly elected Hamburg Democrat turned to her husband, U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul Jr., and took in a minor-league Batavia Muckdogs game to get some pointers.

Hochul, who said she's only played in two softball games prior to this, wore a jersey with "26" on the back to reflect her House district.

She played some center field for the bipartisan politicos, who won 5-4 in seven innings.

The congressional rookie rapped two singles in two plate appearances, and had collisions with the media team's first basewoman both times.

"I don't let anyone stand in my way," Hochul said, displaying a scrappiness that will serve her well in politics.


Move over, Monica

"Clinton intern" is a title that lost some of its luster a while back, and this certainly won't help restore it.

Internet news and gossip sites this week gleefully reported that a former intern in then-Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's Buffalo district office is now a porn actress.

The woman, known professionally as Sammie Spades, told TMZ she interned in the former senator's office here in summer 2006.

Numerous outlets reported her real name is Samantha Kogelman, and a source confirmed this to Off Main Street.

The Williamsville schools alumna told the Daily Caller, a news website, that she worked as a paralegal and took summer classes while interning for Clinton.

Two professors from Niagara County Community College lavishly praised Kogelman in letters of recommendation to the senator's office obtained by TMZ.

Kogelman didn't enter the adult-film industry until after moving to Las Vegas and running into financial struggles. The names of her movies aren't family-newspaper friendly.

Not surprisingly, an NCCC rep declined to comment and the press office of the State Department, where Clinton now serves as secretary of state, did not respond to a request for comment.


Life of pie

Maria Whyte doesn't want second place.

That's true when the Erie County Legislature majority leader and candidate for county clerk is running for political office -- and it's especially true when she's baking a pie.

Whyte was a two-time winner of the annual Best Pie in Black Rock Contest, but she was the runner-up in last year's competition.

"I was determined to reclaim the title," said Whyte, who baked a number of test pies before entering two varieties in last Saturday's contest -- an apple pie and a blueberry pie.

Whyte was confident going into the culinary competition, which drew more than 30 entries, and she was thrilled when the judges called her later to tell her she had won with her blueberry pie.

What's her secret? Whyte was reluctant to reveal it publicly, before a little coaxing drew out the answer: A hint of cinnamon in the filling.

"And, of course, you can't have a fruit pie without a perfect crust," she said.


Pot put

It wasn't the most well-thought-out plan for escaping trouble.

A trooper patroling the northbound Niagara Thruway at about 10:15 p.m. Monday saw someone's upper body sticking out of the sunroof as a vehicle passed by at the Porter Avenue exit, according to State Police Sgt. Gregory R. Peron.

After the trooper turned on his emergency lights to pull over the vehicle, this passenger threw a bag of marijuana out of the sunroof -- and onto the hood of the trooper's car.

Probably not where he was aiming.

Sean M. Schmidt, 20, of Buffalo, was arrested for unlawful possession of marijuana and not wearing a seat belt, Peron said.

Written by Stephen T. Watson