Tonawanda News


December 20, 2013

ADAMCZYK: Not a fit night out for man nor beast

Tonawanda News — It’s getting discouraging and predictable. It’s snowing. Whatever time it is, whatever day it is, it’s snowing. When it’s not raining, it’s snowing. 

Siberia must be like this (similarly, San Diego and its meteorological blandness, but without the snow). Whatever you do these days is done against a backdrop of snow, snow as metaphor, snow as obstacle, snow as constant counterpoint to eating, sleeping, breathing. Dostoevsky and Pasternak explained it better than I ever will, but snow is what you walk through, what you shovel, what you avoid when you go inside.

The theater that is your life, short-term, has a stage made of snow (and we are merely players).

The recent wave of you-know-what has blown a massive hole in a pet theory of mine, that Western New York winters are essentially 90-day endurance tests. Make it through January, February and March and you’ve made it through winter. Indeed, it can snow before and after those months, but it can be balmy as well. Winter now is whenever winter chooses to force itself in.

Walking around this snow globe of a village, several evenings ago on my way to some of Kenmore’s fine cuisine (Mike’s Subs on Delaware Avenue) — silent, crunch crunch crunch, a vortex of snowflakes in the air, and incredibly cold, I neglected to mention — the weather was an agent of heightened senses. Looking at neighbors’ outdoor Christmas lights and displays, televisions on and visible through windows, and me the only one outside, I felt like it was a movie, a nature film and I was a black rabbit being chased by a polar bear across the Arctic.

I pondered why more horror films do not use snowstorms, or winter, as backdrops to their plots. “The Shining,” of course, wherein a guy overdoses on his own imagination as he spends a winter marooned in an empty resort hotel. A haunted house of the mind.

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  • adamczyk, ed.jpg ADAMCZYK: And now for something completely different... Last weekend I attended a local movie theater (a plushy, posh experience; they design these places now to get you out of your living room and away from your home electronics) to watch the sun set on the British Empire.

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  • wallace, amy.jpg WALLACE: Too much information? Is there such a thing as TMI or too much information anymore? Some might say yes.

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  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: On reading and the lack thereof It was surprising to me a few weeks ago when a friend asked a group of us to estimate how many books we have each read over the last five years. The English teacher said 200 and he far and away led the pack. I was probably the median and my number was 20-25.

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  • confer, bob.jpg CONFER: A Con-Con would be a con game

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  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: Conflict in Ukraine now a concern of global proportions It seems increasingly clear Ukrainian separatists, with the help from the Russian military, are responsible for the tragedy. They, of course, have denied it. They've also denied access to the crash site to international investigators seeking to recover the dead and determine what happened. That's not something the innocent party does.

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  • ADAMCZYK: Personal development, rendered in steel Accepting the premise that everyone needs to fill the same amount of time every day (24 hours, every day), some people use theirs rebuilding things, tangible things, and thus fulfill a few intangible goals.

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  • WALLACE: Festival season is underway Summer is the season of fairs and festivals. From Canal Fest in the Tonawandas to the Allentown Art Festival and Italian Heritage Festival in Buffalo to the Erie County Fair in Hamburg, the Western New York area has no shortage of things to do with the family over the summer.

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  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: King George's abdication leaves many questions I've covered Niagara County politics for 10 years and it's been a fascinating -- and often infuriating -- experience. With the news the man known with equal parts respect and cynicism as "King George" is walking away it's about to get more interesting.

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