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Editorial: It seems to us – The fans' favorite, tolling terrors, political stress and the Uritrottoir

There’s a cliche in football that the backup quarterback is the most popular guy in town. (All that untapped potential!) For now, the most popular guy in Buffalo might be the quarterback who starts for the Cincinnati Bengals.

That’s Andy Dalton, whose last-minute touchdown pass against Baltimore last Dec. 31 gave the Buffalo Bills a playoff berth.

The joke is that Dalton will never have to pay for anything here again. We’ll see when his team arrives next weekend for a preseason game. Here are three suggested gifts our region could bestow upon Dalton:

• An official key to the city (lightly used by its previous owner, Terrell Owens).

• A case of Flutie Flakes cereal (“best if sold by 2045”).

• A broken card table, christened by members of Bills Mafia.

If it seems like a crazy amount of money to be charged in fines, that’s because it is. But it’s also easy to avoid them.

John Oravec of Niagara falls crossed the Grand Island bridge 24 times one month, racking up tolls on the bridges’ new cashless tolling system. But he didn’t pay them.

When he finally got around to it – two months later – he had found a bill for $1,224, including onerous fines – $50 for each unpaid toll after a month’s nonpayment.

In the end, after much yelling and screaming, the penalties were waived. It would be wise for the Thruway Authority to rethink its fines, but here’s what’s also wise: Pay promptly. Better yet, given the convenience – and the possible break on tolls – get an E-ZPass.

It’s important to care about the direction of the country, but some people care so much they’re losing sleep over it.

A new survey, commissioned by Bankrate.com, found that 1 in 7 Americans are so riled about the nation’s politics that they have trouble sleeping. And there is a financial component: 16 percent of those who make $75,000 a year or more stress about politics, but only 7 percent of those making less than $30,000 say they stress.

Our suggestion: Focus on other interests, at least for a while. It’s better than making less money.

“I love Paris,” wrote Cole Porter, one of America’s most beloved and sophisticated songwriters. He might not have loved its new exposed, public urinals.

The Uritrottoir, now appearing around Paris, is basically a box with an opening in the front and a floral display on top, containing straw which transforms into compost. But as Reuters reports, it has produced a fount of opposition, including that it is sexist. We love our French fries and French toast and French wine, but this? Zip it.

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