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Off Main: Bible returned to Mychajliw

Belly up to a Bible

It took him two years and a visit to a Ukrainian bar, but Erie County Comptroller Stefan Mychajliw finally found his Bible.

“I’m glad to have it back,” Mychajliw said. “There’s an honest Ukrainian somewhere in Buffalo.”

The Bible used to belong to the library at the Dnipro Ukrainian Cultural Center in Buffalo. Mychajliw, who is of Ukrainian descent, asked to use it for his swearing in when he first took office in 2012 to fill an unexpired term. The Ukrainian Cultural Center let him keep it as a gift.

After Mychajliw won election to a full four-year term in 2013, he once again used it for his swearing in at the center. But a lot of Obolon – Ukrainian beer – was flowing as part of the post-swearing-in festivities, and during the revelry, the Bible was misplaced.

Mychajliw returned to the cultural center on Saturday to participate in a post-Christmas Malanka celebration and went to get a drink at the bar.

“Oh, I think I have something of yours,” the bartender told him, and handed over the book that had been stashed behind the bar for years.

Mychajliw said he’s now keeping the Bible in a safer, beer-free location.

Punch in the gut

When RJ and Lindsey Marvin decided to make a “gut shot” drink from the leftover kimchi brine at their new shop, they envisioned the $4 bottles of the concoction would be perfect for the health-conscious consumers at their new West Side shop.

The couple recently opened Barrel + Brine at 257 Carolina St. and are making pickles, sauerkraut, Kombucha, kimchi and other fermented foods.

The kimchi drink includes a reddish brine, garlic and ginger. It’s packed with vitamin C and D, as well as probiotics.

“You don’t have to take a pill. You can drink this,” Lindsey Marvin said.

Since the shop opened in December, several customers have told them they’ve put the gut shot to a different use.

“We had no intention of making hangover cures,” Lindsey Marvin said, “but that’s what some people are using them for.”

Added her husband, “If you want to pour a little bit of vodka in there, it’s up to you. We don’t judge.”

Past-due dinner

Buffalo Teachers Federation President Philip Rumore is tenacious seeking payment for the debts he believes are owed, whether it’s back pay for teachers or dinner.

Now, there’s one person he feels owes him both – Buffalo School Board Member Carl Paladino.

The two usual foes famously shared a meal together at Sinatra’s, flipping a coin for the tab. Rumore lost, but Paladino promised to pick up the check another time.

Following an exchange between the two at this week’s School Board meeting, Paladino indicated they could continue the debate following the meeting.

Rumore seemed amenable.

“You owe me dinner anyway,” he said.

It was all an act

One Buffalonian watched ABC’s “Madoff” miniseries, which aired last week with Richard Dreyfuss in the title role, with particular interest.

Lionel Lewis, a retired University at Buffalo sociology professor, has written two books on Bernard Madoff’s financial fraud, in which Madoff lost $17 billion of investors’ money in a Ponzi scheme.

Madoff was sentenced in 2009 to 150 years in prison. The case retains a hold on the public mind. In fact, the ABC series is one of two Madoff treatments airing this year. So what did Lewis think of the ABC miniseries?

“They were not trying to make a documentary,” he said. “This is not Ken Burns.”

But he did find the two-part series entertaining. As for Dreyfuss’ acting? Lewis said Dreyfuss played him like he played Dick Cheney in the movie “W.,” as “determined, forceful – a real S.O.B.”

Lewis’ second book, “Bernard Madoff and His Accomplices,” comes out in March.

He assures us it’s a good investment.

Off Main Street is written by Tiffany Lankes with contributions from Sandra Tan, Scott Scanlon and Stephen T. Watson. email: