Bishop Richard J. Malone will be installed as the 14th bishop of Buffalo on Friday, Aug. 10. We welcome him to Western New York and look forward to seeing him explore the many towns and villages in the diocese.
He is New England born and bred, so I thought it would be helpful to give him some insight into what makes our area so special.
No one really calls our two major east-west expressways by their formal names. The Kensington Expressway is known simply as “The 33.” The Scajaquada Expressway is best known as “The 198,” possibly because no one can spell it.
Corpus Christi Church, built in 1907, is one of the great Polish-American parishes in the nation. It’s easy to find for two reasons. One, it has two towering steeples that dominate our East Side. Two, it is near the corner of Clark and Kent streets, otherwise known as “Superman Corner.”
One of Buffalo’s most famous bands is the Goo Goo Dolls. Its leader, Johnny Rzeznik, lived only eight houses from the corner of Clark and Kent. He uses the “corner of Clark and Kent” as the name under which the Goo Goo Dolls publish their music, according to the website forgottenbuffalo.com.
A great choice for a bite to eat after a hockey game is a little place on Seneca Street near the boundary between Buffalo and West Seneca. Many people call its signature hot dogs “slime dogs” because of the abundance of meat sauce ladled over them. If you buy five, you get the sixth one free.
That doesn’t happen just anywhere.
It’s “pop.” Never “soda.” Never.
Being from New England, Bishop Malone is likely a Red Sox fan. He will run into a buzz saw of New York Yankee fans here, so be prepared. He might want to start following the Detroit Tigers.
They’re pretty safe.
Do I dare bring up the age-old rivalry between the New England Patriots and the Buffalo Bills? They play Sept. 30 at Ralph Wilson Stadium and on Nov. 11 in Gillette Stadium. All I ask is that Bishop Malone not enter into any of those corny challenges with representatives from the rival city.
We have seen plenty of events where a local representative wagers a bucket of chicken wings against the favorite food of the opposing city. We never seem to win when it comes to crab cakes.
We have a blast teasing our friends in Canada.
To listen to some of them talk, they sound, well, like they’re from a foreign country. But thousands of them live just a stone’s throw across the river, making the journey to shop at the Walden Galleria or attend a Sabres game.
You’ll be able to pick them out readily when the Montreal Canadiens are in town.
They are the hundreds of ticket holders wearing the classic red sweater. (It’s not called a jersey in Canada, but that’s the topic of another column.)
It doesn’t help that they call their one dollar coin a “loonie.”
If he has time to get to the Erie County Fair before it winds up on Aug. 19,
Bishop Malone should take note that it is one of the few summer festivals to offer chocolate as a topping for fried dough. He’ll probably get a stomachache from it, but he’ll have 12 months to recover.
Speaking of festivals, there are still many to attend this summer. If he misses the Labor Day ox roast in East Aurora or the chowder at the Clarence Center Labor Day picnic, he can check community newspapers for information on where to sample a slice of Greater Buffalo.
On a far more serious level, I hope it is Bishop Malone who gets the telephone call from the Vatican telling him that Father Nelson Baker has been canonized as a saint by Pope Benedict XVI. The legacy of the humble
hometown priest known as the “Padre of the Poor” is known worldwide.
(David F. Sherman a columnist for the Weekly Independent Newspapers of Western New York, a group of community newspapers with a combined circulation of approximately 75,000 homes. Opinions expressed here are those of the author. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)