P.O. Box 636
Totowa, New Jersey
November 7, 1998
Albert Marotta (#1018)
Our POINTers In Person - Chapter held our last meeting of the year 1998 at the Housing Authority Community Room in Garfield, NJ on November 7, 1998. Thirty people attended, including many new faces. Illness accounted for at least one absence.
Annita Zalenski(#39) began by giving the new people an overview about POINT and PIP and offered them materials about the organization. She also spoke about the National POINT Conference in Las Vegas and future conferences to be held in Austin, Texas and Salt Lake City, Utah. Perhaps a few members with top organizational skills will one day plan a conference to be located in the central states and along the east coast. It was also announced that The Northern NJ PIP Directory/Database, prepared by Maria Carparelli (#2100), has now been completed and is available at a nominal cost. Annita has begun a News You Can Use newsletter for members, which will include timely information about local events concerning italy, Italian culture, genealogy, etc. It will also be available via e-mail.
Bob Scussel (#2437) introduced our guest speaker, Salvatore Amico M. Buttaci. Mr. Buttaci is a teacher at a local public school, a member of the New Jersey Poetry Society, and an editor of various poetry anthologies. He is also a songwriter, music publisher, a certified questioned document examiner and handwriting expert. Finally, he is a published poet and writer of many articles and books including, A Family of Sicilians: Stories and Poems. The cover of this book is graced with photos of Sicilian towns taken and provided by Bob Scussel (#2437). These towns include Mistretta, Scoglitti, Marineo, Cefalu, Bolognetta, Acquaviva Platani, Taormini and Mussomeli. Mr. Buttaci has also written two bilingual volumes of Sicilian proverbs entitled, Comu Dissi Iddu.
Mr. Buttaci's theme was, The Pride of Being an Italian-American. His presentation included a brief history of Italian immigration, a discussion about Sicily, as Italy's least favorite son, Sicilian values, memories of growing up Sicilian, the negative portrayal of Sicilians, his deep affection toward Sicily, and his ideas on how to keep Italian cultures vibrant. These topics were interspersed with Mr. Buttaci's reading of his poems (some in English and others in the original Sicilian) at appropriate intervals. Weeping for Sicily and Chiantu pi La Sicilia were especially touching.
Our next meeting will be the annual business meeting, when we will try to review our mission, continue to fine-tune our enjoyable and informative get-togethers, exchange ideas, etc. It will be held on Saturday, February 6, 1999 at 10 AM in Garfield.
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