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December 28, 2012

Parsing the events of the season


Tonawanda News — Except for a cloud on the horizon, brought to you by those Keystone Kops in better suits. I refer to the United States Congress, offering us tax increases and a gallon of milk for $7, not because we deserve it but for a certain intransigence in making a deal. 

By the time these thoughts turn into ink there will be additional downward twists and turns, but presently the problem is Mr. Boehner’s inability to get his hard-line colleagues on the same page as the other Republicans. When the Tea Party finally collapses under the weight of its own dudgeon and joins the bone yard of political splinter groups, will historians consider any of them heroes?

My hometown of Kenmore will offer a New Year’s Eve celebration this year, a public five-course feast in a Delaware Avenue banquet hall ($65 per person). There is something attractive about the main drag of this village on a night like that: lampposts lit and decorated like Christmas trees, the tree on the Village Green lit like the Christmas tree it actually is, cars pulling over to unload spangled revelers entering the party. And if you’re not doing that, there’s the Delaware Pub and Grill or the volunteer firemen’s party up the street, and durable Mike’s Subs a little south. Happy, shiny people everywhere.

I make the occasional joke that where I once ran into friends in bars and at Sabres games, I now see them in doctor’s office waiting rooms. Except at this time of year: it’s in liquor stores, and they’re stocking up for one thing or another, purchasing by the box and not by the bag, inviting me over or at least offering lukewarm promises to get together. Even if it never happens, the good wishes beat the strident insistence on “Merry Christmas.”

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