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Once Again, Mark Twain's House Disappears

Twain houseThomas Reigstad, Buff State professor and author of "Scribblin' For a Livin': Mark Twain's Pivotal Period in Buffalo," gave a talk about Twain in Elmira on Nov. 30, Mark Twain's birthday. It was sponsored by the, ahem, Elmira College Center For Mark Twain Studies.

Present were two huge sheet cakes from Wegmans, which Reigstad reports were decorated with the gold and purple colors of Elmira College. 

One cake was frosted with the words "Happy 168th Birthday Olivia." Twain's wife was born November 27, 1845.

The other said "Happy 178th Birthday Mark Twain." It also had a huge picture of the house, pictured at left, that the Twains received as a wedding gift, at 472 Delaware Ave. in Buffalo.

Olivia's cake was cut up and went fast. However, Reigstad observed ...

Continue reading "Once Again, Mark Twain's House Disappears" »

A Victorian Ode Upon the Buffalo Bills


Lynn Shaftic-Averill, of Kaisertown, has a scholarly interest in both British poetry and the Buffalo Bills. And never the twain shall meet, you ask? How little you know Buffalo.

Shaftic-Averill, caught up in Sunday's game against the New York Jets, posted a poem. She began: "With apologies to Elizabeth Barrett Browning, I am compelled to write..."

That is Elizabeth Barrett Browning pictured above. Ahem:

How do I love the Bills?

Let me check the score. 

I love the pass defense, the coaching calls, Byrd's interceptions 

The Jets' defense breach'd when field goals the wild winds do tame, 

And to the Jets, we put the screws and pains.

New York Times Praises Actress' Buffalo Accent


Love this New York Times review of a 2012 production of Tom Dudzick's "Miracle on South Division Street." A Buffalo production of the play opens Friday at the Kavinoky Theatre.

The Times reviewer writes in the last paragraph: "The players are all very comfortable in their roles — Ms. Cosgrave gets the most laughs — though only Ms. Zazzi has the hard A of the Buffalo accent nailed."

The Buffalo "A" is a most elusive talent!

Alas, the rest of the cast gets an "A" only for effort.

Shakespeare, Unleaded

Bidwell etc 025

This sign at Elmwood and Amherst was fun to puzzle over whilst waiting at a red light.

To gas up or not to gas up, that is the question.

The quality of ethanol is not strained.

It is the East, and Juliet is the Sun-oco!

OK, mercifully, the light is changing.

Gallop apace, ye fiery-footed Ford!

Public Artists Make Powerful Statement At Amvets

Scrawled on the walls of the ahem, fitting rooms of the Dick Road Amvets is, let us be honest, a lot of dreck. In its midst, though, we admired an oasis of high-minded ideals.

Amvets 003

Got to love, especially, the Tolkien-quoting nerd, taking time out from Middle Earth, or whatever it is called.

We hope he scored a good haul!

The BPO and Bigfoot

Reinhold Gliere -- whose massively romantic Symphony No. 3 the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra is playing tonight at Kleinhans Music Hall and Wednesday at Carnegie Hall -- is a great composer.

But he is a great-great-great-great uncle!

And his great-great-great-great grandniece, Jennifer Gliere ...


...  is going to be at the BPO's performance on Wednesday in New York City. Jennifer Gliere is a soprano and originally thought she could not be there because she had a rehearsal of Bach's B Minor Mass. But she has been sprung from the rehearsal -- alleluia! -- and so will be able to go.

Buzz caught up with Miss Gliere while she was sitting in traffic, which is what you do when you live in New York.

One thing we asked her about was the folk hero Ilya Muromets, the legend that inspired Gliere to write his outrageous, rarely performed symphony. Ilya Muromets is a warrior who chalks up all kinds of victories before -- fatal error! -- he defies God and is defeated by the heavenly hosts.

Jennifer Gliere said Russian kids grow up knowing all about this mythical figure.

"What would be our equivalent?" we asked. "Would he be like Robin Hood?"

She laughed.

"More like Bigfoot," she said. "Only not as nefarious."

Dyngus Day news from the front


In the continuing saga of Anderson Cooper dissing Dyngus Day, we love how festival organizer "Airborne Eddy" Dobosiewicz fights on, like a hero out of a ballad by Adam Mickiewicz, pictured above.

Most recently, Eddy was greviously insulted by Cooper's dodging out of this year's Dyngus Day festivities. Cooper gave some excuse, something about "60 Minutes," but Eddy will have none of it, not that we blame him.

In today's Buffalo News Eddy is quoted on the op-ed page  page A8, at the top. He is one of two quotes! The other is by Douglas J. Sarno, representing the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, discussing a funding threat to nuclear waste cleanup in Niagara County.

"We're going to make his life miserable," Eddy is quoted as saying, about Anderson Cooper.

Eddy says he was quoted out of context.

He said what he really said was:

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Newly exhumed Richard III was no stranger to Buzz


Buzz loves the story of how they have found the bones of England's Richard III. Right now the king is lying there in England with a Catholic priest watching over him and reporters filing past him. Questions are being raised. Did Shakespeare gave Richard III a bad rap? Perhaps he was not the villain he is often made out to be. It will be interesting now that there is DNA involved, and other sophisticated methods of investigation. Perhaps we will get some surprises.

It is most exciting! And personally we are pulling for the king, pictured above.

Because Richard III was no stranger to the Buzz column!

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Hey, ho, the wind and the car parts

Who has seen the wind?
Neither I nor you.
But when your quarter panel flies by
The wind is passing through!

With apologies to poet Christina Rossetti ...


... such were the experiences of a friend of Buzz's as she drove into work today.

"I tore up a lower side panel in the front of my car when I got stuck in my driveway last week," our friend confides. "I was waiting for the January thaw next week to use my new roll of Buffalo Bills logo duct tape to do a fix until summer."

Ha, ha! We, the proud drivers of Buffalo cars, all know what happens next!

"Today .... thunk!! And past my window sails my beleaguered quarter panel!

"The alert driver behind me astutely dodged the flying object. When last seen, my quarter panel was heading for Canada.

"Bon voyage et Bien Venue."