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OLAF FUB SEZ: According to singer-songwriter Ani DiFranco, born in Buffalo on this date in 1970, “Any tool is a weapon if you hold it right.”

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Autumn’s Queen

My crocuses (or should I say)

My croci really make my day.

And though they keep my neighbors cryin’,

I even dig the dandelion!

I love the fragrant hyacinth;

It makes me think of pepperminth.

I also like the narcissus;

It brings me such catharsisus.

An orchid? Lots of work; but still...

It SO improves my window sill!

A fly trap? I prefer it more

To bugs that sneak in through my door.

And marigold’s a joy, I think.

Olfactorily, though, they stink!

That’s why I so enjoy a rose

Whose essence penetrates my nose.

But none of these can quite compare,

Can make me gawk, can make me stare,

Can narrow my attention span

The same as Autumn’s flower can!

My passion is devotional!

It makes me wax promotional!

But why do mums create such zeal,

And make me feel the way I feel?

While I’ll admit, they lack much scent,

That’s hardly an impediment.

It’s how they look that matters most,

That keeps my eyeballs so engrossed.

A rose is red, a violet, blue,

A peony’s only pink, it’s true.

And lily’s whiteness gives me chills...

But mums bring technicolor thrills!

Their hues fulfill my every wish.

They’re purple, pink, and orange(ish),

Bright yellow, white, or daisy-like--

They make me go all crazy-like!

So when it comes to floral stuff,

There’s only one that’s good enough.

My heart cries out, “Chrysanthemum!”

It’s why I wrote this anthemum.

– Jim Howard

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IT’S ACADEMIC – All sixth-, seventh- and eighth-grade boys and their parents are invited to the annual open house at Bishop Timon-St. Jude High School, 601 McKinley Parkway, from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday.

Student ambassadors will lead tours and talk about their experiences at the school. Faculty, staff and coaches will be on hand to discuss sports, classes and extracurricular activities. Information also will be available about scholarships and financial aid.

At 7:45 p.m. each evening, three scholarships to the school will be awarded in the auditorium. Winners must be present. For more information, call Patrick Ellement at 826-3610, Ext. 237 or email pellement@bishoptimon.com.

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BAKERS’ CHALLENGE – The entry deadline has been extended to Friday for the baked pie contest, to be held Oct. 5 at the Burchfield Nature and Art Center, 2001 Union Road, West Seneca.

At 2:30 p.m. that day, three hungry judges will sample and give their impressions on the looks, taste and “crust-worthiness” of each pie. Entry forms are available at the center or online at www.BurchfieldNAC.org. For more information, call 677-4843.

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SAFEKEEPERS – The Western New York Land Conservancy, which is dedicated to protecting the most important meadows, farms and forests in the region for future generations to enjoy, is holding a drive for new members.

Executive Director Nancy Smith notes that the conservancy, founded in 1991, now oversees more than 60 protected properties comprising more than 5,000 acres.

“This year we celebrated the opening of the 112-acre Bryant Hill Preserve in Cattaraugus County,” Smith says. “We are now close to protecting the Mill Road Scenic Overlook in Aurora. We are also working to protect several properties along the Niagara Escarpment in Niagara County, our second historic farm in the Eden Valley, and a Clarence property that includes one of only four intact oak savannas in all of New York.”

For more information, call 687-1225 or email info@wnylc.org.

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BYGONE SUMMERS – The YWCA of WNY is seeking former campers with stories and pictures from their days at Camp Forty Acres, which is now Evangola State Park. Many of the buildings from the camp remain in the park, and officials want to install an exhibit commemorating the park’s history as a YWCA camp.

Digital copies can be made of items that cannot be donated. Video and audio stories from campers will be recorded. Call YWCA headquarters at 852-6120, Ext. 116.

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY – Emmett Gallagher O’Neill, Kenneth J. Turner, Tabotha McCabe, Debbie Merrifield, Sister Mary Gloria Lewandowski, Leann Guzzetta, Bridget Hall, Pam Gibbins, J.F. Karb III, Ellen Zelasko, Margaret Lechner, Sean Stablewski, Betsy O’Brien, Patricia A. Rosolowski, MaryPat Ramsey, Andrew Kuczmarski, Ashley Ganoe, Linda Maury, Nicole Dejoy, Norene Sporney and Stanley Kopiasz.

email: olaffub@buffnews.com