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Around the Town with Lou - February 12, 2010

Slander and libel were my topics as I spoke to the Leisure Club having been invited by Gerri Solosky, the program chairperson. Her husband Ed is the president. There were 117 people at the meeting. Among those I had a chance to talk to were Bill and Ann Doyle, Charles and Marjorie Bedell, Mary Creegan, Joe McCarthy, Hilda Nagler, Helen Melvin, Josephine Musico, Margaret Rooney, Mary O’Boyle, Mary Clarkin, Patricia Haddock, Mary Ann Plaia, Jeanne Scisci, Electra Gaglia, Greta Benkert, Jean Gallo, Simon and Marilyn Lemli, Anges Delaportas, Arline Cavanaugh, Lillian Barnola, Trude and Harold Pfleghardt, Leslie Kerzner, Sonia Rechcigl, Jean Cerruti, Agostina Giambalvo, Ann Hull, Enes Morello, Dorothy Rehman, Helen Minchella, Dorothy Cmielowski, Helen McCarthy, and Eileen Ferguson. The threat of slander was the reason that Mayor Martins changed the speaking format at the televised village board meetings. There was a personal attack against an unelected person that could have led to legal action. Now the mayor requires written subject matter from people wanting to address the board.

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A special agent with Homeland Security will be the guest speaker at the Mineola Chamber of Commerce meeting of Feb. 16 at the Piccola Bussola restaurant. Deborah Dorenfest is with the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Department that will help businesses guard against hiring illegal aliens and to develop a stable workforce. The meeting starts at 7 p.m.

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What a great sign on the wall of Pyramid Jewelers. “To the world you may be just one person but to one person you may be the world.”

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Peter Smith of Elderberry Road is back from a business trip to Hong Kong and Singapore. Pete is an architect. His wife, Karen, is the president of the Corpus Christi School Board and is heartbroken about the decision to close the school after 87 years. The Smiths have two children attending the school - Connor and Nicole.

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It was tough to hear of the retirement of Barbara Mattina after 35 years of service to the village. Barbara is the daughter of the late former village trustee Tony Bellissimo and Marian Bellissimo.

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Dennis Lynn is that colorful guy pumping gas at Yopps Service Station. He is a big booster of the Irish Cause and is one of the few people like me still hoping for a United Ireland. Dennis lives just a couple of blocks away from Yopps on Mineola Blvd. Yes girls, he is still single.

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Mike McCarey used to own Massaro’s restaurant. He and his wife Kathleen live on Andrews Road.

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John Czaka was visiting Mineola Bicycle where he worked for 50 years. While there, he put on his work clothes and helped out for a couple of days. John used to live in the village. Now he and his wife Ann live in Florida.

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Bob Redmond was in the office. He has been president of the PAL for 32 years. Bob and his wife live on Elm Place.

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Sal Cataldo is quite ill. We wish him a speedy recovery.

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While at the Whistle Stop, owner Mary Ann Fearon introduced me to Alan Reardon, the Village Justice of Williston Park. Alan is challenging Mayor Lud Odierna in the next election.

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Business seems to be improving whether it is due to President Obama’s stimulus programs or not I don’t know. But on a Saturday morning I found five people ahead of me at Pyramid Jewelers. I encountered another four people at the Whistle Stop, had to wait a bit at Bix’s Furniture Restoration, no less than six persons in front of me at Randi Cleaners and 12 customers ahead of me at Creative Lighting.

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In the 18th century sailors had little to eat on long voyages. Salt pork was one of the few foods available. There was no refrigeration. Sailors would sit around talking and chewing the meat. Hence the expression “chewing the fat.” They were probably complaining about the lousy chow.