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Local Author's Book Debut

What’s in your couch cushions? Spare change? Forgotten toys? The other matching sock? What if the things you found deep down within the couch had the power to change the course of history? That’s the fantastical idea behind Bethpage resident, Henry Clark’s debut young adult novel, What We Found in the Sofa and How It Saved the World.

The book centers on three 12-year-old children who find a discarded sofa on the side of the road near their bus stop. As they begin to search between the cushions, they find a zucchini colored crayon, a double six domino, a mysterious coin, and a fishhook. These seemingly commonplace items soon thrust the friends into an adventure as they try to thwart an evil mastermind’s plan to conquer the world.

“It’s the kind of book I enjoyed back when I was 12 years old,” Clark says. “I’ve always liked stories that start in a very normal situation and then totally spin into directions you never expected.”

Clark has always had a penchant for crazy stories. As a young boy growing up in Connecticut and later Bethpage, he loved writing anecdotes of kids having wacky adventures. He was an avid reader and would ride his bicycle around the neighborhood while simultaneously reading books such as The Hardy Boys and Tom Swift.

He stopped writing in middle school, and worked for Old Bethpage Village Restoration as a supervisor for 30 years, writing intermittently for science fiction magazines and MAD magazine. In 2011, he started writing longer manuscripts aimed for adult audiences. However, the eight manuscripts he wrote never garnered any interest from literary agents.

One day, he was driving around in Suffolk County when he saw a sofa sitting on a curb. He had recently read an article about a big coal seam fire in Pennsylvania and began to wonder what would happen if the sofa had been sitting close to the edge of the underground perpetually burning fire. This sparked the idea for his children’s novel.

Clark initially sent the manuscript out to five literary agents and unlike with his adult pieces, got a response for What We Found In The Sofa very quickly.

“No one was interested in the books for adults, but with my first attempt at a children’s book several people got back to me. Obviously I was meant to write for kids,” Clark says.

Clark recently read excerpts from his book at the Barnes and Noble in Carle Place. The 61-year-old author has already written a sequel.

What We Found In The Sofa is available at bookstores and on amazon.com.

News

Commuting to work via train is exasperating and expensive—add on the stress of parking and the threat of tickets, and it becomes madness.

At the Hicksville Long Island Railroad (LIRR) station, there are 2,603 total spots, which includes 1,440 in the town parking garage. Of the total spots, 1,531 are permit spots and 618 are unrestricted, according to the Town of Oyster Bay public information office. Though that sounds like plenty, the sheer volume of passengers commuting from the station makes every morning a mad dash for parking.

John Busto, a 6th Degree Black Belt in American Kempo Karate and lifelong Hicksville resident, was inspired to begin the rigorous path of martial arts at the young age of nine after watching the old David Carradine television show “Kung-Fu.”

“I saw that show and I thought, ‘I have to do this.’ It was just something that was interesting to me; the mystique of martial arts,” he said. “So my parents brought me to a local school called Tracy’s Karate. Back then there weren’t many schools like there are today, and I was lucky enough to have one in my town.”


Sports

Football was Mike Torrellas’ heart and soul. He also liked a good Turkey Bowl.  

Unfortunately, the Hicksville Crusaders co-founder wasn’t able to witness the program’s inaugural event, which took place Saturday, Nov. 8.

Torrellas passed away suddenly last December due to a blood clot, but the spirit and drive of the man who wore the number 53 and tragically passed at that age still surrounds the Crusaders football program.

The Long Island Fight for Charity will be hosting its 11th annual Charity Boxing Event on Nov. 24 at the Hilton in Melville. Among the 20 volunteers putting up their fists for funds will be Hicksville business owner Mell Goldman, who will be fighting under the nickname “The Kid.”  

Goldman is the President of All Boro Cleaning Services. He stated that he was enticed at the opportunity and wanted to contribute to charity.


Calendar

Fall Drama Production

November 20-22

Blood Drive

November 24

Christmas Holiday Fair

November 24



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com