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TICKET TO PARADISE Winter-weary CorningElmira flyers escape in record numbers to the Florida sun By Matt Connor

Maple, Maple, Maple

Paula Poundstone in Williamsport

God’s Country Carpenter

MARCH 2011




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Volume 6 Issue 3

6

Mountain Chatter

8

South Bound

14

Shear Delight

32

Hard Wood

By the Mountain Home Staff Good deeds at Slate Run; Dennis James, man of glass; an Eagle cancer benefit.

13

Heart of the Mountain

16

Reading Nature

Keny Meyer

By Patricia Brown Davis A local photo gallery exhibition brings forth memories of newspapers past.

By Matt Connor Need a break from the cruel bite of winter? Vast numbers of area residents are taking flight to Florida via Corning Elmira Regional Airport’s hot new route to the Sunshine State.

By Tom Murphy Sweet secrets revealed in The Maple Sugar Book.

18

Yogamama Says

By Kathleen Thompson Always an inprobable love affair, Yogamama’s relationship with winter finally falls apart.

By Dave Milano The fleece produced at Arvgården farm appeals to a very discerning clientele.

20

By John & Lynn Diamond-Nigh He cussed. He used the F word. He was the toughest kid on the playground. And he was a child of uncommon decency.

Dave Milano

The Better World

24

Twister

Top: A (largely unused) baggage carousel at the Corning Elmira airport, where passengers fly to Florida in record numbers. Center: Hilma and Keith Cooper of Arvgården farm. Bottom: The Carpenter’s Shop’s Calvin Horning. Cover image by Ken Meyer Cover art by Tucker Worthington

Georgiana DeCarlo

By Evan James Bochetto A Poconos tale: original fiction by a new young writer.

By Georgiana DeCarlo After a quarter century, The Carpenter’s Shop in Ulysses is still the go-to place for custom millwork.




Contents continued

28 Creatively Sappy

By the Mountain Home staff Maple, maple everywhere—and what to do about it.

31 Finger Lakes Wine Review

By Holly Howell American cheddar was born in the Empire State, and has found a perfect match in Cabernet Franc, another New York specialty.

36 Sticky Bucket Maple

By Dawn Bilder If you were raised on Aunt Jemima, it’s time to come to the table for a sweet upgrade.

38 Back of the Mountain By the Curtiss Museum A beauty of a biplane.

Publisher Michael Capuzzo Editor-in-Chief Teresa Banik Capuzzo Associate Publisher George Bochetto, Esq. Managing Editor Matt Connor Copy Editor Pete Boal Staff Writer Dawn Bilder Cover Artist Tucker Worthington P r o d u c t i o n M a n a g e r / G r ap h i c D e s i g n e r Amanda Doan-Butler Contributing Writers Sarah Bull, Angela Cannon-Crothers, Jennifer Cline, Barbara Coyle, Georgiana DeCarlo, John & Lynne Diamond-Nigh, Patricia Brown Davis, Lori Duffy Foster, Donald Gilliland, Steve Hainsworth, Martha Horton, Holly Howell, David Ira Kagan, Roberta McCulloch-Dews, Cindy Davis Meixel, Suzanne Meredith, Fred Metarko, Karen Meyers, Dave Milano, Tom Murphy, Mary Myers, Jim Obleski, Cornelius O’Donnell, Audrey Patterson, Gary Ranck, Kathleen Thompson, Joyce M. Tice, Linda Williams, Carol Youngs C o n t r i b u t i n g P h o t o g r ap h e r s Mia Lisa Anderson, Bill Crowell, Anne Davenport-Leete, Ann Kamzelski , Ken Meyer Advertising Director Todd Hill Sales Representatives Christopher Banik, Michele Duffy, Richard Widmeier Subscriptions Claire Lafferty Beagle Cosmo

Mountain Home is published monthly by Beagle Media LLC, 39 Water St., Wellsboro, Pennsylvania, 16901. Copyright 2010 Beagle Media LLC. All rights reserved. To advertise or subscribe e-mail info@mountainhomemag.com. To provide story ideas email editor@mountainhomemag.com. Reach us by phone at 570-724-3838. Each month copies of Mountain Home are available for free at hundreds of locations in Tioga, Potter, Bradford, Lycoming, Union, and Clinton counties in Pennsylvania; Steuben, Chemung, Schuyler, Yates, Seneca, Tioga, and Ontario counties in New York. Visit us at www.mountainhomemag.com. Get Mountain Home at home. For a one-year subscription to Mountain Home (12 issues), send $24.95, payable to Beagle Media LLC, to 39 Water St., Wellsboro, PA 16901. Look for Home & Real Estate magazine wherever Mountain Home magazine is found.




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MOU N TA I N C h atter Fishing for Victory in Slate Run Want to get a brand new rod and reel this fishing season—and also do your good deed for the day? Tom and Debbie Finkbiner, owners of the Slate Run Tackle Shop and Wolfe’s General Store in Slate Run, Pennsylvania, give you the perfect opportunity all through the month of March with their Camp Victory-March Trade-In. Just bring in a blister-packed, closedface spinning outfit (from a big box store), and they’ll give you twenty percent off the real thing—rods, reels, and lines. All of the toy fishing outfits go to children at Camp Victory. Camp Victory in Millville, Pennsylvania, offers a unique and joyful

Helping Matt

When he was 44 years old, Mountain Home managing editor Matt Connor was told by doctors who diagnosed his colorectal cancer that he might have as little as two years to live. Two years later, on his 46th birthday, this April 2, Lock Haven’s Fraternal Order of Eagles will hold a benefit on Connor’s behalf. For a $5 admission fee, attendees will enjoy the comedy stylings of stand-up comic Joey Callahan. Raffle tickets sold prior to the event will give purchasers eighteen chances to win cash prizes and provide a discount at the door to the comedy night event. Raffle and event tickets are available by calling (570) 748-1771. 

experience for children with chronic and catastrophic health problems. The Finkbiners got involved with donating to them twenty-three years ago. “It’s an amazing camp,” says Debbie. “The first time we went down to see it, I think it was spina bifida week there, and all the kids were smiling on the porch, singing and waving in their wheelchairs. I thought about the problems those kids faced in their everyday lives, and it filled my heart to see them happy.” “I remember that time,” adds Tom. “I couldn’t find the camp, and I was getting all stressed out and mad. Finally, I found it, and as I approached, I saw this young man in a wheelchair, happily welcoming

me with a full arm wave, and I thought, ‘Here I am, my business is prosperous, my health is great, and I’m getting mad at being lost. And there he is in a wheelchair happy as can be. Every time I get stressed out now, I think of that, and I calm down. They’ve changed me.’” Come get a great deal at the tackle shop and be a part of the magic of making a disabled child happy. ~Dawn Bilder

Touch of Glass If there’s such a thing as a glass instrumentalist for the ages, it’s Dennis James. In fact, the title of his 2002 Linda Ronstadt-produced CD was Cristal: Glass Music Through the Ages, upon which Ronstadt also leant her considerable vocal talents. James, a happy new resident of Addison, New York, recently moved from Seattle, Washington, and spent the last forty years building an impressive musical career. Indeed, he’s currently performing at the Metropolitan Opera at Lincoln Center, where he’s playing the rarely heard original glass armonica part in the pit for the Mad Scene in Lucia di Lammermoor, composed by Donizetti in 1819 and featuring, for the first time, a genuine historical replica instrument of the type in use when the part was written. It’s a multiple engagement. Opening night was February 28th, and there are two performances a week through March 19.

The last performance will be simulcast theatrically worldwide on the Met’s Live in HD broadcast series. As an international touring and recording professional glass armonicist, he began his performing career touring his first version of Franklin’s musical invention at the Museum of Glass in Corning, New York, back in the early 1980’s. Now, with his renewed closeness to Corning, he has come full circle. ~Dawn Bilder


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Up, up and

Away (from winter)

Discount flights to Florida from the Elmira Corning Regional Airport have snowbirds chirping

Ken Meyer

By Matt Connor 

AJ Fratarcangelo


courtesy Alligant Airlines

T

he bitter wind slices through your overcoat like the teeth of some vicious animal. Your back cries out in agony as you lift the next in an endless series of shovelfuls of snow from the icy sidewalk. Inside the gauge on the thermostat spins recklessly, the basement furnace churns like a stormy sea and yet the temperature inside rarely seems to reach that desired level of comfort. In other words, it’s cold. Formidably, abusively, even dangerously cold. What you wouldn’t give for one small reprieve, perhaps a weekend away in some sunnier clime. The white sandy beaches of Fort Lauderdale. The luxury hotels and theme parks of Orlando. But in this recessionary economy who can possibly afford to fly off in the middle of the winter for a threeor four-day vacation getaway? Well, you can. If you can manage $100 in round trip air fare, there is probably an Allegiant Air flight out of Elmira Corning Regional Airport (ELM) that will get you to the Sunshine State this weekend on a nonstop, two-and-a- half hour flight, a fact that has caused a virtual run on Florida excursions through ELM this winter. “There has probably been about a twenty percent increase in passengers using the airport this winter,” says Ann Crook, manager of ELM. “That’s including passengers going to Orlando and passengers going to Fort Lauderdale. They started Fort Lauderdale flights in November. “The appeal is that they’re direct flights. Most people like that. And often they can get very reasonable fares to sunny, wonderful vacation destinations. Prior to this, passengers would fly out on US Airways or Delta, or drive all the way to Florida or drive to another airport like Buffalo, Rochester or Syracuse, or simply not go,” Crook says. “I think what

Allegiant has done is make it possible for many of those people to go through Elmira.” Andrew Levy, the president of Allegiant since 2009, says the “value proposition” is a magnet for middle-income snowbirds desperately seeking relief from the winter doldrums. “We’re going to fly you nonstop to a place you want to go to and do it at a very low fare on a full size airplane,” he said during a telephone interview from his company’s balmy offices in Las Vegas. “At the same time we’re going to try to sell you hotel and rental cars and other things where we make some more money but we allow you to save some more money by bundling them. “It’s a very compelling value proposition,” he continues. “I think people in general want to travel and if travel is extremely affordable people are very likely to take advantage of that. I think it’s just something people like doing. They like to go to places like Florida, especially at this time of year.”

One of those people is AJ Fratarcangelo, owner of AJ’s Hair and Makeup in Corning. He’s taken weekend excursions to Florida twice so far this winter, and likely will have made at least one more trip down South by the time this issue of Mountain Home goes to press. “I actually heard about this at a chamber of commerce meet-and-greet at the airport in September or October,” A.J. says. “They announced that Allegiant was going to have the new route to Fort Lauderdale. “It really struck my fancy because they had a contest and I won two free round trip tickets!” he says. “In getting the tickets I went on the Web site and saw some incredibly low fares. So instead of wasting my freebie, I jumped at a flight that cost $23.99. That was excluding taxes and add-ons that make the trip a little more pleasurable. But that’s how I first became familiar with it.” For business owner A.J., the flights fit perfectly into his winter lifestyle. He works at the salon on alternating 


Florida travelers (L to R) Pat Place, Shamus Kennedy, AJ Fratarcangelo, and airport manager Ann Crook.

Saturdays, but on those weekends when he has a Saturday off, he heads home to pick up his luggage on occasional Friday nights and drives straight to the airport to catch a 7 p.m. flight. He’s on the ground in Fort Lauderdale by 10:30 p.m., at which point he drops his bags at the home of a friend who resides there. He still has time to pick up a late dinner and go out for cocktails. On Monday the return flight leaves Fort Lauderdale at 4:10 p.m. and arrives at E/C Airport at 7 p.m. “We’ve all jumped at it,” he says. “You’d think it was a shuttle bus to the mall, or like one of those party buses to a football game. The flight attendants are always in great humor, very accommodating; they talk about the Northern weather and how they’re personally partial to Southern temperatures. It’s very comforting to know that when you get on board you’re on a nonstop and all of your things will be there when you get off. You don’t have to worry about a layover in Philadelphia, where they might lose your baggage. And I’m fortunate enough to stay with friends down there, but the airline does piggyback, though, some great deals for hotels and car rentals.” That’s a point repeatedly made by Allegiant president Levy: “We are trying to sell a vacation, so a big part of what we sell is, we don’t just want to get you where you want to go, we want to sell you a hotel, rent you a car,

10


Ken Meyer

get you tickets to a theme park, so we do try to extend the product beyond transportation.” Rick Maxa, branch manager and partner in Corning’s Bottles & Corks wine store, said he’s not particularly “a Florida person,” but he likes the idea of getting on a plane at 7 p.m. in Elmira, landing at 10:30 in Fort Lauderdale, and, after a forty-five-minute drive to Palm Beach, spending a weekend with extended family. “The roundtrip ticket for my wife and I, with checked bags, was four hundred bucks roundtrip. You don’t see that much anymore,” Rick says. “It gets you down there for a long weekend and you head back Monday. It worked out well the first time we did it, and we’ll do it again since my father-in-law lives down there.” “There are a lot of people doing the weekend, which surprises me,” says AJ, who encountered Maxa by chance on one of the flights recently. “There are families, a couple of neighbors. And they all have this delightful weekend. The way the schedule goes is either Friday to Monday or Monday through Friday. Those are the excursions. The Friday through Monday works perfectly for me. It’s broken up a bitter cold winter and really has made it quite pleasurable.” Additionally, Maxa suspects there are wider positive impacts to the local economy as a result of the popularity of Allegiant’s Florida

11


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flights out of E/C Airport. “I know several people from Binghamton who drive to Corning to take an Allegiant flight, so now we’re pulling ridership—or whatever they call it—from other areas, and that’s good business for us if we’re capturing market share,” he says. “So while they’re here they’re maybe picking up dinner or buying gasoline. It’s absolutely good for the local economy.” Airport manager Crook agrees: “What’s happening is that people who haven’t flown before, or not often, are flying to Florida now. They’re also traveling to our airport from greater distances because this is where they can get on an inexpensive Allegiant flight.” “This is really for everybody,” Fratarcangelo says. “A lot of people that I was talking to while going down there are investigating real estate because the market is so low right now. I went down with three friends, and the three of us did not stay together but we all did a lot of different things while we were there. Then we would collect ourselves and meet up for a drink or dinner. It was just a great way to spend the weekend.” Echoing Fratarcangelo’s comments describing the Florida flights as a kind of “party” excursion, Crook says the flight crews often do their best to enhance the festive mood of the travelers in their charge. “They really make the flights fun,” she says. “They do contests and prize drawings and do their best to make it fun, so it’s almost like your vacation starts as soon as you board the plane.” We haven’t done a lot to consciously promote that, but I think it just happens,” says Allegiant president Levy with a chuckle. “Our offer is not tailored to a business passenger, as most airlines do. We’re very consciously focused on vacationers. So I think what you end up with is a plane full of people who are largely going on vacation, and this happens because it’s the common reason for these people to be traveling. On the way down it’s pretty lively.” Lively, it should be said, for reasons other than vacation-engendered enthusiasm, perhaps. “We also do our best to help out the local economy,” says Fratarcangelo with a laugh, “by supporting the airport bar.”


Heart of the Mountain

Agitation and Apathy Patricia Brown Davis

courtesy Nancy McCaughey

I

t was a monochromatic journey and feast for the eyes and senses at the Gmeiner Art & Cultural Center last month. Walking through the Wellsboro gallery’s amazing exhibit, Reflections in Black and White by the Photo Keller group, I was drawn to stop, look and listen with my heart. All along the walls, there was a veritable smorgasbord of visions, textures, and subject matter! One such photo, by Nancy McCaughey, took me back years to my carefree childhood and to the days of traipsing along with my dad to the Agitator newspaper office and to Al Weeks’s photo studio, which always had an abundant number of great photos ready for the local newspapers and people, alike. It was just this past winter the Deane Center for Performing Arts tore off the Davis Furniture storefront to reveal what the building had looked like a hundred years ago and more. Housed in the same area had been the old Deane Photography Studio, where some of the documentation of our town’s early history took place in form of portraits and landscape photography. There on the front of the building was, as Nancy suggested, the ghosts of the black lettering of the name of the newspaper. Originally the moniker had been surrounded with a rectangle of white paint to make the letters stand out. Then at some point in our history, the paint had been removed. However, the stain from the black paint had been absorbed by the old bricks and mortar, and can still be seen by the willing observer. As beautiful as the photo was, I was just as taken with Nancy’s posted words: “Walking along Main Street my eyes were drawn up to the ghosts of letters on the former offices of a newspaper whose motto was ‘The agitation of thought is the beginning of wisdom.’ The dictionary lists agitation as an antidote for apathy. Both can be good things.” I’ve always been taken with visual artists who wed words to their work. Art exists in many forms and we are sometimes caught in trying to express our feelings. Sometimes we must go from one art form to another to bring it to full completion. As an observer, I can’t help but transform the art into how it speaks to me. And most often it kick-starts my memory into action. I recall as a child my parents talking about both the Agitator and the Wellsboro Gazette as our town’s newspapers. That’s where we got to read about and see—through photographs—what our community did throughout the years. [Those papers now house our history and can be read by going to the Green Free Library website and researching the newspaper archives.] One can observe we had a host of newspapers in the 1800s—

and, as Scott Gitchell of the Tioga County Historical Society said—“They were all about politics.” Many were short-lived, dying when their owners or a movement died (like the Wellsboro Advertiser, the Whig newspaper,) or moving to another town (like the Tioga Eagle,) or being bought out by someone else. Such happened when the Wellsboro Gazette bought out the Agitator and got rid of its competition. However, the real early newspapers, like the Democrat, the Banner and the Pioneer, had more national news in them and articles written by other newspapers—the main way people heard the news of the day. What’s interesting to note is The Agitator began as a Republican paper and the Gazette began as Democratic (perhaps an ‘agitator’ to the Agitator). However, along its history, the Gazette switched party affiliations (same family, differing generations). If you go back and read some of those early writers, you’ll find some fine writing. And you’ll find great names in publishing history, like the Agitator’s original editor and writer, Mark H. Cobb, and, later, the Roys of the Agitator, and the Camerons and Coneverys of the Wellsboro Gazette. So, when you’re walking past the Deane Center, look for those ghost letters. And, when you see them, ever so faintly—those letters that worked so hard to stay here, think about agitation as the beginning of wisdom and an antidote for apathy. It may change your way of thinking for the better. As Nancy said, “Both are good things.” Patricia Brown Davis is a professional musician and memoirist seeking stories about the Wellsboro glass factory. Contact her at patd@ mountainhomemag.com. 13


14


O U tdo O rs

Here’s To Ewe

Hilma and Keith Cooper are wool-gatherers for a fussy market Story and Photos By Dave Milano

H

ilma and Keith Cooper produce blue-ribbon fleece for a very narrow, and very fussy, market of hand-spinners, weavers, and knitters. Their customers are a meticulous group— the sort who freely fret over wool “crimp” and “staple,” and are pleased to know that the wool they are working was donated by Gertrude, or Elsa, or Ingrid. (“Nobody wants to spin a number,” explains Hilma.) The Coopers happily cater to this discerning bunch with painstaking attention to husbandry, and by applying exacting quality standards to every aspect

of production. In so doing they have carved for themselves a unique shepherd’s niche, serving a discriminating clientele who in turn create with their wool some of the finest handcrafts anywhere. The Cooper’s farm, called Arvgården (pronounced “Arv-gor-den”), sits on a broad, breezy plateau in the farm village of Welsh Settlement, smack in the middle of Tioga County, Pennsylvania. It is a handsome 118 acres of spacious hayfields fringed by tall woods, with an ample corner dedicated to raising what the Coopers consider the ideal sheep, Corriedales. At

Arvgården the sheep are fat and round, the buildings tidy, and the fencing orderly. The whole place in fact is trim and shipshape— it is an odd day indeed when the lawn is unmowed or the garden not weeded. And that helps attract a different sort of customer to Arvgården—to the Cooper’s Bed & Breakfast, which brings visitors up close and personal with Arvgården’s Corriedales, and to the gentle rhythm of farming through the seasons… Dave Milano is a former suburbanite turned parttime Tioga County farmer.

From Sheep to Sweater. Left: Professional sheep shearer, Todd Kreger, brings his skills to Arvgården. Middle: Hilma “skirts” each fleece by hand, carefully picking out seeds, burrs, and other debris that has managed to evade the sheep’s cover. Right: Wool is graded or “classed” based on many factors: color, staple, diameter and strength, and crimp (the fibers’ distinctive bends).

15


Outdoors

READING NATURE

The Sweet Life Tom Murphy

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16

new copy the Helen and Scott Nearing’s The Maple Sugar Book, Together with Remarks on Pioneering as a Way of Living in the Twentieth Century (1950, White River Junction: 2000, Chelsea Green) won’t look like the one pictured here. I like to think the stains on it are splashes from when I finally got around to tapping some of our sugar maple trees, but most likely they’re tea. I like this cover too because the galvanized bucket with its peaked lid resembles the oldfashioned equipment I used rather than the more efficient and practical plastic tubing. The book is full of ruminations on how to tend to and harvest from a sugar bush, the term for a grove of sugar maples. The Nearings take immense joy in the work and explain it with such vivid detail that the hubbub and activity of maple sugaring come alive on the page. The tapper and the spout driver set out into the softening snow. The tapper chooses where to drill—the Nearings suggest some taps on the south and west sides for cool days and some on the north and east for warm ones—and the spout driver with spouts and hammer (an apron works better than a bucket because both hands are free) drives the spout in “gently� until it “responds with a solid thud.� This task begins the work. “Tapping out,� they exult, “is one of the most thrilling and exciting of farm occupations. Winter is over.� And Scott knew about winters right from the beginning since he was born in Morris Run, Pennsylvania, near Blossburg.

The book is informative, but saying it is a how-to book for maple sugaring is like saying Walden is a manual for building sheds. The Maple Sugar Book has 385 endnotes, and with them the Nearings place themselves and their experience in a larger historical context. So what weather conditions are needed for a good sap run? “That maple sap might run in abundance, there should be much snow on the ground—that it freeze the night before—that the heavens be serene—and that it should not be too cold during the day.� That is what M. l’Abbe de la Porte, a French voyageur, said in 1749, one of the many voices with something to say about the how and why of maple sugaring. The book’s subtitle puts the Nearings in a larger philosophical and economic context. They tell their story to illustrate their belief in what the good life is, to explain their values and illustrate the living out of them. “In short what we have been developing is a source of livelihood from the earth—from maple, as it happens, for any one of many household crafts would have served the same purpose. It is hardly possible to overemphasize the importance of this relationship with the earth, its rhythms, seasons and cycles.� So maple sugaring season is about more than just syrup; it is about hearing that solid thud that tells us we are in contact with the solid earth.

Tom Murphy teaches nature writing at Mansfield University. You can contact him at readingnature@mountainhomemag.com.


Outdoors

17


B ody

&

S oul

Yogamama Says

An Open Letter to Winter Kathleen Thompson

I

t’s over. I’m breaking up with you. I thought I could build a relationship when you first came on the scene back in November, but now I see that our core values simply do not align. You promised long days and nights of introspection, deep couches, cozy fires, red wine and chocolate. You said I wouldn’t miss the outdoors; wouldn’t miss my friends. But you were wrong. I have discovered that I don’t need cold and blustery to be introspective. I have discovered that a swaying hammock under a shady tree is far better for me than a deep couch. If I want a fire, I can light the chiminea as dusk falls, and sip a little Riesling as I scan the sky for the first star. You said it wouldn’t be so bad, but it is. My skin feels three times too small for my face, my eczematous ears itch nonstop no matter how much I swab them with oil. The humidifiers run day and night but make no dent in the dry heated air of the house. It takes me five minutes to gear up for any foray into the outdoors: coat, hat, scarf, gloves, boots, ChapStick, tissues. I spend the whole walk calculating how far I am from home

18

rather than enjoying the day. Every morning I twist the slats of the blinds open and look out into another gray day. It’s the same every day. The birds come to the feeder, but they do not sing. They just eat. Their life, like mine, is a matter of survival, not joy. I am sick of you, winter. You are an owl and I am a lark. Our biorhythms do not match. I am sick of soups and stews and root vegetables. I want a crunchy salad of fresh greens. I want to see a perfect cherry tomato fresh-picked, gleaming in a pool of vinaigrette on a salad. I want to end the day eating tapas on the deck, sipping wine, wearing shorts. I am sick, sick, sick of shoes. And more than shoes, I am sick of socks. You said I could sit and read all day without the siren song of the garden and its endless demands for weeding and watering, but I need to do those things. I find that after a few hours of reading and writing I need an active diversion. But you make it so uncomfortable to be outside. All you give me is snow to shovel. It was cute the first few times, but now it’s not cute any more. I love long sunny days, hot sidewalks, the sounds of birds, the softness of an evening walk. I love to lie on the beach, or walk the shore in the early morning and hear the waves. I miss an ice cream cone after a long day working in the yard. I miss flowers–Oh, how I miss flowers! And hummingbirds, and being able to walk the yard

each morning with my coffee and see what has bloomed overnight, what is new. I want to put the space heaters away, ditch the humidifiers, eat watermelon, itch a mosquito bite, float around in the kayak, read in the Lafuma chair. I am tired of armoring against you, winter. I am tired of your moodiness, your grumpiness, your bad humor. I don’t appreciate your sense of humor. I don’t like your sloth and torpor. I don’t like how you make me want to put on my pajamas at 4:30 in the afternoon and never get out of them until noon the next day. I hate how you make me watch the weather channel every time I want to do something. I have to put up with you for at least one more month and then I am free of you. I don’t know how I am going to endure you for even these next few weeks. I really hate you, and I hate the person I am when I am with you. You bring out the worst in me. All I want to do is complain, and every time I open my mouth to do so, I have to check myself because complaining goes against all my core values; it’s just not me. You have made me into something I am not. I have put up with you for too long. I will be finished with you sooner rather than later, I know, but then you will try to ingratiate yourself into my life again next year, and I will probably be forced to take you in, but God, I will not want to. We need to find an amicable way to separate, winter. I cannot change you, and you cannot change me. But I really need you out of my life. No true happiness is possible for me until you’re gone.


Body & soul

19


Body & soul

The Better World

Sin and Nobility John & Lynne Diamond-Nigh

F “A GRIPPING PAGE-TURNER” -- bestselling crime novelist Michael Connelly

The Murder Room (Gotham Books/Penguin Books) goes on sale in stores August 10. It can be ordered or pre-ordered on Amazon (www.Amazon.com) Barnes & Noble (www.bn.com), and Borders (www.borders. com). The Murder Room Audiobook on CD, read by Broadway actor Adam Grupper, is available from Simon & Schuster (www.simonandschuster.com). 20

irst day of school. Scared stiff. During lunch the boy beside me asked if I’d swap my bologna sandwich for his peanut butter and jam. It became the custom. Your name is John and mine is Wayne, he said one morning. That’s a famous actor in Westerns. I knew nothing of movies, nothing of Westerns. We had no TV. Wayne cussed. He used the F word, the N word, the JC words. A few of us came from middle-class homes. Most came from Skunk Hollow, a shantytown a mile or so away. They were rough, rabblesome and often cruel. They dismembered frogs and grasshoppers at recess. They crushed smaller boys’ scrotums for fun. John, don’t you never cuss? I shrugged. Sometimes I got angry, maybe I wanted to cuss, but the weight of everlasting damnation deterred me. Anyway, in fierce emergencies Christians had more pasteurized synonyms. Like jeepers. John, why don’t you never fight? You never fight. We were Mennonites. Nonviolence was a matter of solemn honor. Not that Wayne liked to fight. He rarely did. By grade six he was the strongest kid on the playground. At the occasional bicep exhibition, Wayne’s rose in a vivid iron cantaloupe, bigger even than Sandy Flowers’s, whose dad had been a pro boxer in Buffalo. One day Wayne didn’t come to school. At recess I was buffaloed by Judd Preyr. My head hit the ice as Preyr leapt on my chest, his knee in my crotch. Two others pinned my hands as a brick fist clubbed my cheek.

I was in for a Skunk Hollow drubbing. Then two hands appeared in the blue air above me. In a wink my assailant was screaming and rolling in the snow. The other two had vamoosed. Dumb f***s, Wayne muttered. One evening my mother said, I met Wayne today. I was at your school, bringing things for the fair, when a boy came up to me and said, ‘Hello, I’m Wayne, I’m a friend of John.’ He put out his hand to shake mine, then offered to carry the box upstairs. Perplexing, his blend of sin and nobility. So alike sometimes it was hard to tell which was which. Once I just said, Wayne, stop the N word. He looked doubtful. Okay, but you gotta say the F word. There are more ways than one to utter an obscenity. I’ve seen the most sanctimonious ‘politically correct’ speak them in actions that fell far short of the instinctive decency of my young friend. John writes about art and design at serialboxx. blogspot.com. Lynne’s website, aciviltongue. com, is dedicated to civility studies.


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A rts & L eisure Comedy and Kitty Litter

Paula Poundstone expounds on hay fever, felines, and life on the road By Matt Connor

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adopted kids she’s raising (ages twelve, sixteen, and twenty) along with her umpteen cats. Area residents will have a chance to experience some of this comedy when Poundstone makes an appearance at the Community Arts Center in Williamsport on Saturday, March 12. “I don’t go out with a busload of equipment, thank goodness, and therefore I’m in and out,” Poundstone says of life on the road. “It’s an endless tour but it’s not the type that will be on the back of some sweatshirt. This year I might be doing close to ninety dates, which is a lot for me. I probably did closer to the lower eighties last year. “I have three children and sixteen cats,” she continues, “and none of those goddam children do the litter box the way I like them to, so if I don’t come home for a while, I just come home to the biggest disaster. I’m generally only gone a couple of nights. Through some strange alchemy I’ve found that three nights is exponentially longer than two nights. That third night has nothing to do with the normal passage of time.” Unlike some live performers—Joan Rivers springs immediately to mind—who become neurotic messes if their calendars aren’t constantly filled with paid engagements, Poundstone says she prefers to balance life on the road (and regular gigs like the popular NPR program Wait, Wait...Don’t Tell Me) with the steady comforts of home. “I love being in front of the audience and I miss them when I’m not around them,” she says. “And I miss my kids when I’m not around them. I’m lucky enough in that I get to do both, I courtesy Pau

la Poundston

e

aula Poundstone sniffles. She coughs. She wheezes into the phone from the bedroom of her home in Santa Monica, California. The sound of her voice is nasally and congested, enough so that you finally ask her if she has a cold or the flu. “I have terrible allergies. I always do,” she says with a sneeze, a real blasto one. “I’m Felix Unger. I make terrible noises. I always do. I don’t know how my children stand it. Even though my son is twelve, I still love to have him sit on my lap, but the second he does, I start to cough. I don’t know if I’m allergic to him, but it’s been since well before he was twelve. I don’t know if it’s the smell of his head or that he’s crushing my lungs or what. “ButI’msurethat’s very comforting for a child.” Much of her act, she says, is built around her home life; the three

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Performer: Paula Poundstone Venue: Community Arts Center Address: 220 West Fourth St, Williamsport, Pennsylvania Date: Saturday, March 12 Showtime: 7:30 p.m. Tickets: $15–$30 Phone: 800-432-9382 Web site: www.caclive.com

get to go back and forth. “I love audience interaction,” she continues. “That’s the fun part. When I was young I would try too hard to memorize everything I would say in my five minutes before I went out there. And then I’d be on my way to the stage and something would distract me and within two minutes I would forget what I was supposed to say and I would be forced to turn to the audience and do the time-honored thing of saying, ‘Where are you from?’ to some guy in the front row. At first I used to think that was unprofessional and somehow wrong but then I realized that was the fun part. That was the really good part. “I know a good deal about the people in the places where I go, just from talking to them,” she says. “I talk to them during the show, which is where a lot of the jokes come from, and I also talk to them after the show. I also follow thousands of people and do goofy Facebook stuff so I have an interesting knowledge of people who come to see me. “I don’t have to hire somebody to do my demographics because I think I’ve met every last one of ’em.” And with that, and a Felix Ungerish snort, she returns to her three kids, her Santa Monica home, and her myriad felines. At least for the next few days.


arts & leisure

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arts & leisure

Twister A Short Story

By Evan James Bochetto

E

This is a work of fiction, one in an occasional series.

lizabeth revels in the luxury of the living room, in the luxury of her new mansion, and she sinks into the delicious silk pillows as she talks on the phone with a friend about her extravagant honeymoon fantasies, “I really wanna get a cute little house in the Poconos and just ski every day. But I don’t think Jacky wants to… You’re right, I will just tell him…Okay talk later, love ya.” Emboldened by her friend’s confidence, she picks up her puppy, Twister, and heads for her new husband’s office. Jack, a well-kept man in his fifties, sits behind his desk fixated on one of his three desktop computer screens. His young wife sets the dog on the floor, sits in a chair directly in front of his desk, and begins the conversation without uttering a syllable. She crosses her legs, revealing her svelte, artificially tanned body, while giving her husband a promiscuous eye. Jack, an intelligent man, takes one glance and knows what she is after: “We cannot go to the Poconos. The Aruba airfare is already paid for. And the dog is staying home.” Elizabeth is taken aback: she has had no chance to work her magic, so she decides to up the ante. She slides onto Jack’s desk and puts her long legs in plain sight. “But we can’t bring Twister to Aruba.”

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“That is exactly the point,” responds Jack, looking cooly at the five-month-old beagle/ lab puppy at Elizabeth’s feet. “Fine then, mother says she will be coming as well.” At this Jack’s face twitches, for Jack dislikes Elizabeth’s mother. And vise versa. Elizabeth’s mother has been set on dismantling the couple ever since she learned of Jack’s age. She would take the utmost pleasure in accompanying the two of them on their honeymoon. He decides having the dog in the Poconos rather than his mother-in-law in Aruba is the best way to go. “You know what, the Poconos might not be so bad,” admits Jack with a smirk, after a moment of weighing his new option. “I love you, I love you, I love you,” replies Elizabeth, as she showers him in kisses. “I’m gonna go pack right now.” The Range Rover plows toward their Pocono retreat, and Twister squirms in Elizabeth’s lap. “Does he have to sit on your lap the entire car ride?” “Oh come on, he’s just a little doggy. Aren’t you, Twister? Look, it’s a pond! Honey, we can go tubing on it,” Elizabeth exclaims, though Jack appears not even the slightest bit partial to the idea. “No way I’m going on the ice. You know what happened to my Aunt Sofie all those years ago.” Just then a large log cabin, half covered with snow, appears on the horizon. “Look, Twister, that’s our new house,” Elizabeth exclaims.

As the Range Rover wends its way up the hill, Twister barks with excitement. When they reach the top of the driveway, Elizabeth opens her door and is nearly trampled by Twister, who has never played in nor even seen snow before. Twister, mad with excitement, jumps in, rolls around, and begins licking the snow. “Babe, can you give me a hand with this?” asks Jack as he begins unloading luggage. “Okay, Jacky,” replies Elizabeth and she picks up a Louis Vuitton suitcase. Jack lugs the other two Louis Vuittons to the front door and opens the entrance on a Pocono palace. The inside of the lodge is expansive and lavish, as Jack rarely spares any expense, with all of the most up-to-date luxuries, ranging from the Iron Chef kitchen to the sunken living room to the Jacuzzi on the back deck. “Jacky, it’s gorgeous,” Elizabeth says with glee. “Yeah, it’s something else,” Jack replies as he struggles to carry the suitcases into the bedroom. Elizabeth drops the suitcase in the entryway and proceeds to explore the house with Twister. “What-da-ya think, baby?” Elizabeth asks Twister, to which Twister responds by barking. “Does someone need to go potty?” Twister barks again. “I think that’s a yes. Jacky, I’m taking Twister for a walk. Be back soon,” yells Elizabeth. “Don’t go on the pond,” replies Jack, as the door slams shut behind her. They head down towards the frozen pond, where a sign on shore warns “DANGER THIN ICE KEEP OFF.” Elizabeth, heedless of ordinary cautions, disregards both Jack’s and the sign’s warnings and heads out onto the ice. After a couple of feelers, Elizabeth deems it safe to go further and she and Twister begin to run on the ice. After building momentum, Elizabeth hops down on her derriere and begins to slide across the frozen ice. After twenty minutes or so, the cold sends them back towards the lodge. She finds Jack napping. Perfect. She sets about her romantic plans for the evening, a candlelight dinner. When Jack wakes, he finds the table set and his favorite meal—filet mignon—nearly


arts & leisure

finished. He walks into the kitchen in his boxers and gives Elizabeth a kiss on the cheek, “mmmm, smells delicious.” Elizabeth beams at her new husband, proud to be fulfilling his desires. “Everything will be done in five minutes, so by the time you’re dressed it’ll be ready.” Jack disappears and reappears in a button-down polo shirt and a pair of jeans. They conspire over dinner, planning for the following day. They will wake up early to go skiing, then have a drink at home in the Jacuzzi. Elizabeth warms at the realization that she is now married and part of a wealthy family. Ever since she was a young girl, she had wanted to be married to the perfect man, someone who would treat her right and pamper her like a princess. Elizabeth disappears into the bedroom, as Jack turns on the TV and begins to watch a sports show. Ten minutes later, Elizabeth calls out, “Jacky, can you come in here for a minute?” Jack turns up the TV volume, in order to hear it from the bedroom, and reluctantly rises and walks over to the bedroom doorway where he sees his wife in nothing but a lacy piece of lingerie. Jack whistles in delight. Elizabeth slowly rises and voluptuously walks over to Jack. “Hi, husband,” she whispers into

Jack’s ear before kissing it. Elizabeth then leads Jack, still whistling, to the bed, shutting the door behind her. The next morning, Jack reads a newspaper article titled, “Airport Snowed In” as he sips on a cup of coffee. Elizabeth exits the bedroom already dressed in her skiing gear, “Reading anything good?” “Yeah, it is a good thing we came here. Our airport was snowed in—all flights cancelled.” Elizabeth smiles at the irony, “See, it’s a good thing we had Twister to take up here.” It’s a good day of skiing, as Elizabeth leads the couple down a black diamond slope with ease. Skilled skiers both, have little trouble conquering the trails of the mountain. But returning home that afternoon, they find the havoc Twister caused in their absence. Jack angrily grabs Twister’s snout and yells, “Bad dog” over and over again. “He’s just a puppy,” Elizabeth tells Jack in defense. “I don’t care!” Elizabeth, knowing Jack calms down with fresh air, suggests that he take Twister for a walk while she cleans up the house. “Go with Jacky,” She says. Twister instantly recognizes Jack’s nickname, and rushes over to him. Jack holds a tight grip on Twister’s leash as he heads toward the frozen pond with the hopes

that Twister will simply go to the bathroom and allow him to return to the warmth of the lodge. Instead, Jack finds Twister pulling and barking in the direction of the ice. Jack realizes Elizabeth must have brought Twister out onto the frozen pond, and turns back. He opens the door to the lodge to find Elizabeth still at work cleaning Twister’s mess. “Did you let Twister go on the ice?” he asks. She replies with a straight face, “Of course not, honey,” and continues her cleaning. The next day, Elizabeth leads them to the trick section of the mountain. Jack stands by as he watches Elizabeth wildly flying off one jump after another, five feet in the air at each jump. As Jack carefully skies around the jumps in order to keep up with her, he sees her being more and more reckless. When the two reach the foot of the trail, Jack screams at Elizabeth, “What are you, nuts? You could have killed yourself.” “Sorry, Jacky, I didn’t know it was so upsetting to you,” Elizabeth replies, but for the remainder of the afternoon and well into the evening, Jack remains upset about her recklessness. The next morning Elizabeth takes Twister on a walk down to the pond. Twister, excited as ever, runs out onto the pond, stopping only

25


arts & leisure

when he realizes Elizabeth has not followed. Now in the middle of the pond, Twister turns around and whimpers to Elizabeth, showing her that he wants her to play with him. She hesitates, but she cannot say no to Twister, especially when he whimpers. Elizabeth takes off running, and, now on the frozen pond, hops down and slides across the ice, closing in on Twister. Twister jumps on Elizabeth with excitement as she arrives in the middle of the pond. Just then Elizabeth hears a crack from underneath, and thoughts of her love for Jack as well as his warnings rush through her head. Another crackling sound is followed by breaking ice, and she plunges through, up to her waist in the freezing water. Her body immediately submits to hypothermia. Elizabeth begins to hyperventilate as she desperately grabs hold of an ice ledge. Twister, still skittering on the ice’s surface, begins to bark frantically at her. Elizabeth, shaking and starting to lose her grip, begins to scream, “HELP ME, PLEASE, HELP ME!” but her voice is nothing more than a whisper in the woods. “Twister, go get Jack,” she says to Twister, who merely tilts his head with confusion. “Go get Jack.” Elizabeth says again. Elizabeth gathers all her energy and

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yells, “GO GET JACKY.” Jacky! A name Twister is familiar with! He runs off the frozen pond, racing at full speed all the way back to the lodge, and begins to bark and scratch at the front door. Inside the lodge, Jack is in his usual place, watching sports on TV, when he hears Twister. “I’m busy” Jack yells to what he thinks is Elizabeth being too lazy to take out her keys. But the barking continues and intensifies, and Jack reluctantly gets up and opens the door. He looks at the dog, startled, as Twister runs in the direction of the frozen pond. The dog stops, then turns around and barks at him again. Stunned, Jack’s worst nightmare engulfs him, and he runs into the house, reemerging wearing his boots and holding a length of rope. Sprinting to the pond, he sees Elizabeth, now submerged up to her shoulders, clinging to the edge of the ice. Jack’s panic causes a flashback. The memory of his lost aunt has prevented him from even approaching ice since he was a child. “Help me,” murmurs Elizabeth. Jack shakes himself out of his trance. Slowly and cautiously he makes his way onto the ice and to within ten feet of Elizabeth. Keeping his distance to ensure that he too does not fall

in, he tosses Elizabeth the rope. “Grab onto the rope, honey.” Mustering a last boost of energy, she grabs the end of the rope. Jack begins to pull and Elizabeth slowly begins to emerge out of the frozen water. Back on solid ground, Jack notices how much Elizabeth is shaking and begins to hug her to warm her up. Her skin is blue, and her lips quiver. In the warmth of the hospital, Twister sits on Jack’s lap as the two watch over Elizabeth, who sits in bed, her legs still shaking, sipping on a cup of specially ordered ginger tea. “You sure you are alright?” asks Jack. “Yes, I’m fine. Just a good thing Twister was there to get you,” Elizabeth replies as she looks at Twister, who again tilts his head in confusion. Elizabeth hands Jack her cup of tea, “I’m gonna try and get some sleep.” Jack looks over at her to ensure she is truly asleep. He begins to rub Twister behind his ear. “You know you saved her, don’t you?” Twister offers up his head for more petting. “Yeah, you’re a good boy.” Evan James Bochetto is a senior at the University of Arizona. This is his first work of fiction.


arts & leisure

“On the cutting edge of tradition”

Highland Chocolates carries a full line of Easter chocolates, including:

Peanut butter eggs Coconut eggs Foil wrapped bite size chocolate eggs. Enjoy the bunnies of all shapes and sizes just waiting to hop into your baskets. 800-371-1082 or locally 570-724-9334

11724 Rte 6, east of Wellsboro. Open weekdays 8-5 and Saturdays 10-2.

Seriously good wine for those relaxed wine times. Tasting & sales year ‘round: Mon-Sat 10am-5pm Sun noon-5pm 4 miles north of Watkins Glen on Route 14

www.lakewoodvineyards.com. 27


F ood

&

D rink

Pour It On

Think Maple Syrup is just for Pancakes? Think again. And again. And again . . .

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othing says spring quite so sweetly as the rising of the sap in a maple tree. Florida may have its oranges, and Hawaii its pineapples, but they don’t have maple syrup except for what they buy from the northern woods. Sugar shacks all over the region will throw open their doors in March for our annual rite of spring, with its world of sweet possibilites. Jennifer Butler, from the Tioga-Potter Maple Association, came up with a quick list of seventy-five uses for this golden goodness, just to whet your appetite, and we’ve included a few recipes from local sugar shacks to satisfy it. 1. Maple whipped cream 2. Maple on vanilla ice cream 3. Maple peanut butter ice cream topping 4. Maple walnut ice cream topping 5. Maple ice cream 6. Maple-sweetened baked beans 7. Maple-sweetened chili 8. Maple-sweetened spaghetti sauce 9. Maple-glazed ham or pork 10. Maple-glazed chicken or turkey 11. Maple meat marinade 12. Maple no-bake cookies 13. Maple-glazed nuts 14. Maple-sweetened hot and cold cereals 15. Maple whipped butter 16. Hot dogs cooked in maple 17. Bacon cooked in maple 18. Maple cake 19. Maple angelfood cake 20. Maple cookies 21. Maple oatmeal 28

22. Maple cream on toast 23. Maple mustard 24. Maple popcorn 25. Maple pepper 26. Maple cream on English muffins 27. Maple cream cheese icing 28. Maple cream cheese dip for fruit 29. Maple gingerbread 30. Maple bread 31. Maple breadsticks 32. Maple cotton candy 33. Maple barbeque sauce 34. Maple salad dressing 35. Maple syrup pie 36. Maple pecan pie 37. Maple apple pie 38. Maple crumb topping for pies 39. Maple bread pudding 40. Maple candied sweet potatoes 41. Maple granola 42. Maple meringue 43. Maple pudding 44. Maple milk shakes 45. Maple fudge 46. Maple syrup on squash 47. Maple stickybuns 48. Maple-glazed carrots 49. Maple baked apples 50. Maple candy 51. Maple coffeecake 52. Maple donuts 53. Maple dumplings 54. Maple biscuits 55. Maple toffee 56. Maple sauerkraut 57. Maple chocolate chip cookies 58. Maple shortbread

59. Maple dip 60. Maple cocktails 61. Maple beer 62. Maple-sweetened coffee 63. Maple-sweetened warm milk 64. Maple-spread sandwiches 65. Maple eggnog 66. Maple-sweetened fruit salad 67. Maple sugar in place of white or brown sugar 68. Maple syrup on French toast 69. Maple syrup on waffles 70. Maple syrup on pancakes 71. Maple yogurt 72. Maple ice cubes 73. Maple lemonade 74. Maple-pecan cornbread 75. Maple cheesecake See Maple on page 30


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Food & Drink

Maple continued from page 28

Maple Salmon From Sticky Bucket Maple 2 salmon steaks 2 thin slices prosciutto ham 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard ¼ cup maple syrup 1 teaspoon dill Pinch salt and pepper Wash and pat dry salmon in a small bowl, mix mustard, syrup, salt, and pepper. Pour over salmon. Wrap slices of prosciutto around each salmon steak. Sprinkle with dill. Grill until thoroughly cooked. Serve warm. No-Bake Maple Oatmeal Cookies From Hamilton Maple Products 2 cups maple sugar ½ cup milk ½ cup shortening ½ tsp salt 1 Tbsp vanilla 3 cups quick oats 6 Tbsp peanut butter Combine maple sugar, milk, shortening, salt and vanilla in pan and heat to full rolling boil, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Stir in oats and peanut butter. Drop on waxed paper by the spoonful. Let set about 1 hour or until firm.

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Maple Pecan Cornbread From Hamilton Maple Products 1/3 cup maple syrup 1 cup all-purpose flour 1 cup yellow cornmeal 1 tsp baking powder 1 tsp baking soda 1 tsp salt 2 tbsp brown sugar 2 eggs 3/4 cup buttermilk 3/4 cup chopped pecans 3 tbsp butter or margarine, softened Additional maple syrup, optional Combine flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda and salt; set aside. In a mixing bowl, combine butter, sugar and eggs; mix well. Add syrup and buttermilk. Stir in dry ingredients just until moistened. Stir in pecans. Pour into a greased 8 1/2-in. x 4 1/2-in. x 2 1/2-in. loaf pan. Bake at 350 for 35-40 minutes or until bread tests done. Cool for 10 minutes in pan. Serve warm with syrup or allow to cool. Mexican Ice Cream From Sticky Bucket Maple 2 cups vanilla ice cream ½ cup frosted cornflakes, crushed ¼ cup sugar ¼ cup maple syrup 1 tsp. ground cinnamon

Place four ½ cup scoops of ice cream on a waxed paperlined baking sheet. Freeze for 1 hour, or until firm. In a shallow bowl, combine the cornflake crumbs, sugar, and cinnamon. Roll ice cream in crumb mixture to coat. Drizzle each serving with one tablespoon warmed maple syrup. Makes four servings. Maple-Glazed Sausage with MapleMustard Dipping Sauce From Sticky Bucket Maple For the dipping sauce: ½ cup spicy brown mustard ¼ cup yellow mustard ¼ cup maple syrup Combine the ingredients in a small bowl. Let sit at room temperature while you grill the sausages. For the sausages: 1 lb. spiral sweet Italian sausage (or a ring of kielbasa) 3 Tbsp maple syrup Preheat gas grill on medium heat for 7 minutes, top closed. Lay sausage over direct heat and cook, turning until cooked through. Brush on maple syrup and continue to grill for 2 minutes, turning until syrup turns to a golden glaze. Remove to a platter and slice into serving pieces. Serve with dipping sauce.


Food & Drink

Finger Lakes Wine Review

One Fun Pairing By Holly Howell

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he first cheddar cheeses originated in the county of Somerset, England, sometime in the twelfth century. The process of making this style of cheese became known as “cheddaring.” (Go figure.) This cheddaring effect involves the additional steps of salting the cheese curd, and then cutting the curd into very small cubes to drain the whey (water content). The curds are then stacked, pressed and turned on a regular basis, resulting in cheeses that can be firm-textured, complex and rich. The very first American cheddar was produced in New York around 1840, and it is no surprise that it is still one of our favorite signature products. New York State cheddar cheeses are worshipped by many cheese connoisseurs. Thanks to the fertile upstate grazing pastures, the prized local cow’s milk, and the cool season production, our region’s cheddars are without a doubt some of America’s best. Kutter’s Cheese (www.kuttercheese.com) is a traditional cheese factory located in Corfu, New York, approximately forty miles east of Buffalo. Founded in 1923, Kutter’s continues to produce excellent cheddars. The classic Kutter’s New York State Sharp Cheddar Cheese has a tangy, nutty flavor that screams for a nice red wine. Cabernet Franc is a red wine that has also found a signature spot in the Finger Lakes of New York State. Although it is a relative of the more popular Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc is a bit lighter in body and a touch more elegant on the palate. Hunt Country Vineyards Cabernet Franc is the perfect example of how much this grape loves New York. Made on the western shores of Keuka Lake, this wine smells of cherry and raspberry fruit, followed by hints of violet and black pepper. (www.huntwines.com) The real magic occurs when you combine

a sip of Cabernet Franc with a bite of sharp cheddar. The tannins in the wine (the stuff that makes your mouth feel dry), literally disappear once you have coated your tongue with that good cheddar protein. This allows the fruit of the wine to explode in your mouth, bringing a beautiful balance to the flavors. In return, the acidity (tartness) of the wine cuts through the richness of the cheese to allow those layers of cheddar complexity to have their moment. In simpler words, it is just plain good stuff… You’ll find that many of the Finger Lakes wineries are carrying a nice selection of New York State cheeses right in their tasting rooms for you to purchase along the wine trail. This allows you a nice opportunity to pick up some fun pairings while you are visiting the region. Coincidentally, Hunt Country Vineyards happens to be a satellite store for the amazing Kutter’s Cheddars. Now that’s what I call a perfect partnership. Holly is a CSW (Certified Specialist of Wine) through the Society of Wine Educators and a CS (Certified Sommelier) through the Master Court of Sommeliers in England; Contact her at wineanddine@mountainhomemag.com.

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Home & real estate

Calvin Horning

If I Were a Carpenter

Remarkable architectural millwork is the hallmark of Potter County’s Carpenter’s Shop

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Story and Photography by Georgiana DeCarlo

he olfactory effect of stepping through the door of The Carpenter’s Shop is similar to that of stepping into a forest on a warm, balmy day. The fragrance of various hardwoods on the floor, walls, and ceiling inspires a deep appreciation for the natural beauty of one of Pennsylvania’s prides: its rich hardwoods. This small office is a testimony to the craftsmanship turned out in the woodshop next door. The Carpenter’s Shop is thriving: its expansive customer base led proprietor Calvin Horning to construct a large warehouse on the site years ago, and this year yet another addition is slated. The bandsaw, table saw and jointer that Horning first purchased in 1978 when he started his woodworking venture are still in use alongside current top-of-the-line 32

woodworking equipment. Horning said the business is bursting at the seams and he doesn’t foresee it slowing down any time soon. He honed his business methods years ago, and two and a half decades later his standard of doing business still hasn’t changed: he provides the best architectural millwork available, with a focus on customer satisfaction. But now his business is nationwide in scope. The grandson of a woodcrafter, Horning shares his love for woodworking with his family, who he said is invaluable to his life and work. His wife, Mabel, and daughter Shalee manage the office. Son Shawn handles the lumber side of the business. “I am very blessed,” he said, “I have my family here and a great group of guys.” He has plenty of reasons to be proud. The Carpenter’s Shop’s creations have ended

up in some the most prestigious homes in America, though because the business creates items ordered by furniture outlets, contractors and other businesses, it’s often hard to tell just where they’ll turn up. Of a few bragging points Horning can be sure, however. His shop created the woodwork for an educational clock featured on a network television show. And parts of a trolley ended up in a gift for a former President of the U.S. An order of 20,000 soap dishes were filled for the home shopping channel QVC and an upscale outdoor lifestyle catalogue. Today most of Horning’s business is still generated via word of mouth, though he still uses brokerage firms, sales representatives and operates a website to promote the shop. See Carpenter on page 34


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Carpetnter continued from page 32

Top: Examples of Millwook. Above: Front (l to r): Shawn Horning, Kaden Dart, Calvin Horning, Mabel Horning. Middle (l to r): Shalee Dart, Ron Hamilton, Ryan Gooch, Clay Gooch. Back (l to r): Mike Sewell, Rod Doran, Sam Hamilton, Cliff Diehl, Don Vought.

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Homeowners, contractors, or businesses searching for a unique look or attempting to replicate an old one know they can find what they want at The Carpenter’s Shop, even if it’s an item that doesn’t currently exist. Horning said all a customer has to do is give him their idea and he’ll handle the rest. Shop supervisor and master craftsman Ryan Gooch, for example, recently finished a pair of massive, eight-foot-tall white pine doors that were hand-hewn to achieve the texture the customer wanted. This unique job took about three weeks to finish, per door. Now he’s moved on to the addition of hinges and the construction of exterior screen doors. They’ll all go into a local home and are part of a larger order that includes hardwood flooring, trim, and a staircase. Among the current works in various stages of completion is a cabinet ordered by a custom furniture store in Ephrata (the second one Horning and company have created for that particular store.) Conveniently, that Lancaster County retailer is located along the weekly route for Carpenter Shop deliveries to the Philadelphia area.

And then there is the work of master craftsman Mike Sewell. He duplicates elaborate mouldings for some of the most distinctive historic homes in the region. Moulding profiles and millwork can be seen at thecarpentersshopinc.com. Next year is the shop’s 25th anniversary, and administrators and employees think they have a good shot at taking home another Signature Custom Cabinetry, Inc., Board of Excellence Award for the year. And why not? They’ve earned the prestigious honor for the last six consecutive award seasons. So along with all of the other custom work Horning, his family, and employees take pride in creating every year, there may be one other job still left to do, and this one for the shop itself: the construction of a suitably elegant trophy case. Shop: The Carpenter’s Shop Address: 2228 SR 49 West, Ulysses, Pennsylvania Phone: 888-889-2998 Web site: www.thecarpentersshopinc.com

Georgiana DeCarlo is a writer living in Coudersport. This is her first article for Mountain Home.


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M arket P lace Shop Around the Corner

Tapping Into a Dream By Dawn Bilder

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Brian and Wanda Warwick, with pooches Hannah and Callie

courtesy Sticky Bucket maple

I

n Sabinsville, Pennsylvania, snow covers the 285-acre farm like a down blanket, as the sun beams from all directions from the pure white of it. Cornstalk stubble peeks out from the snowy covering, conjuring lost days of high summer, and young Christmas trees thriving in the cold bring to mind holidays—past and future. Long stretches of uninterrupted white hide the next crop of hay. There is a beautiful symmetry in the groves of maple trees, heightened by the light cobalt-blue tubing connecting them all and heading down the lightly sloping hills to the 1,800-square-foot sugar shack, where Sticky Bucket Maple products are made and sold. This is the farm that Norman Rockwell and Ernest Hemingway would have built together. Brian Warwick, co-owner of the farm with his wife, Wanda, is in some ways an unlikely owner. He bought the property in 2002, having no previous farming experience, after moving from downstate where he worked in heating and air conditioning. In the most important way, however, Brian is well qualified: this is his dream. “When I was ten years old,” he says, “I would come up to this area to visit my uncle every chance I could. I remember this one time, walking along a log road in autumn, with the leaves in full color and the serenity everywhere. And I thought, ‘I’ve got to have a piece of this.’” Although he has prospered at producing corn, Christmas trees, and hay, his favorite aspect of this reinvented life is making the maple products, which he and his wife started three years ago. “When I began doing it,” says Brian with a smile, “it flicked a switch in me.” He is the architect behind the huge wooden sugar shack, and he exudes childlike enthusiasm as he expertly gives a tour of the equipment and recounts the procedure of making the syrup: “This is the releaser, where all of the tubes on the trees bring the sap. Over there,” he says, pointing to an open loft above, “is the reverse osmosis, which takes most of the water out of the sap. And there,” indicating the middle of the building, “are the concentrate tanks and permeate tanks, where, on their end, you see the rear pan and the finishing pan, which holds the final product.” Wanda, who is the mastermind behind the accounting and marketing for Sticky Bucket Maple, smiles proudly at her husband. “Making syrup is like his second, younger wife,” she says jokingly, and Brian and she smile at each other in a way that reveals a happy marriage.

Shop: Sticky Bucket Maple Phone: 814-628-2230 Address: 1145 Parker Hill Road, Sabinsville, PA 16943 Web site: www.stickybucketmaple.com Email: bwarwick3@verizon.net

Three years ago they started with 400 taps on the trees, and this year they’ll have between 3,000 and 3,500 taps. Neatly lined on shelves in the sugar shack are the rewards of their effort: etched glass maple leaf bottles and jugs of maple syrup, jars of maple sugar—which melts in your mouth like maple fudge—and lovely gift baskets, which include maple syrup, maple coffee, blueberry or buttermilk pancake mix, and maple candy. “There are many health benefits to real maple syrup,” Brian says. “There are no additives—like you see on a bottle of Aunt Jemima—or fat, and, because less of it sweetens more than the same amount of most sweeteners, you can use less in recipes.” On their website, www. stickybucketmaple.com, they list great recipes to back up this claim, (several of which you can try on page 30). You may be surprised to see the many unexpected ways in cooking you can use maple syrup, including dressings, dipping sauces, breads, spicing fruits, and marinades for meat and salmon. Brian has certainly found his piece of this beautiful area as he once dreamed as a child, and now you can get the sweetest part of it for yourself by enjoying Sticky Bucket Maple’s many delights.


Marketplace marketplace

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B ack of t h e M ountain

Curtiss F Boat over Keuka Lake, ca. 1914 Photograph courtesy the Curtiss Museum, www.glennhcurtissmuseum.org

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March 2011