Dishing with Dee: Malba Market still going despite its bumpy history

By Dee Richard

There were three more inaugurations this week. The first was City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer’s at 6 p.m. Saturday evening at the Frank Sinatra School of the Arts High School in Astoria. The second was Councilman Danny Dromm’s Sunday at 1 p.m. at Queens Theater in the Park. The third was Councilman Peter Koo’s, also on Sunday, at 2 p.m. at Flushing Town Hall.

I couldn’t help but notice what appeared to be a common denominator in the Council’s newly elected candidates. First, they were all male, but similar in that they were all young, clean-cut examples of the typical all-American boy next door types. Councilmen Eric Ulrich, Dan Halloran, Koo, Van Bramer and Dromm are all from Queens.

While we are not in the Age of Aquarius, we seem to be in the Age of Youth Orientation, which to a large extent is what it should be, as the young have the energy, endurance and innovation to enact what is happening now. The older, smarter folks being well-aware of their lack of comfort in this electronic era will have hired the best and brightest to help keep them abreast of what’s necessary to survive in this new age.

As an example, Texas U.S. Rep. Ron Paul’s successful and innovative fund-raising in small amounts via the Internet as well as his ability to attract young voters and get them interested enough to become involved in his campaign. As we all know, attracting young voters has been a problem with most political organizations.

We as citizens have much to look forward to just from our selection of the people we have chosen to represent us. I’m not against older electeds. The younger group is composed mainly of older heads on young shoulders. There will always be a need for older heads on old shoulders — the voices of experience. It’s necessary to have a good mix of the two and that is what seems to be happening now.

For a change of pace as well as developing a human interest story, I spent part of Friday afternoon with 94-year-old Frank Orzo and his 93-year-old wife Mary. The Orzos celebrated their 68th wedding anniversary Jan. 3. Mary was a registered nurse at Lenox Hill Hospital and likes to tell everyone she gave birth to all five of her children there due to the employee discount.

In 1946, Frank was honorably discharged from the U.S. Army Air Corps after serving on active duty in World War II. When he retuned home, he bought the Malba Market and renamed it the “Malba Deli,” but now it’s back to the “Malba Market. It is on the corner of 14th Avenue and 145th Place.

After many years of running a successful business, they decided it was time to retire and subsequently sold the business to two partners. Apparently the partners did not get along well or their other interests took up too much of their time. As a result the business was not successful. In the process of renovating the store in order to rent it to a new tenant, the family had a conference and decided to keep it in the family and give it another try, much to the delight of the neighborhood as well as the Orzos.

Their sons, Tom and Bob, are actively involved in the day-by-day operations with the help of two young local men. If you are ever in the area, check it out. Their German potato salad is the greatest.

While there Joan Vogt of College Point stopped in and said she was so glad to see the family had decided to continue the business, as she has been a loyal customer for years.

On Sunday, around 1 p.m., I met up with Dr. James Cervino of the Restoration and Conservation Advisory Group and members of the North Queens Alliance Group at Little Bay Park. They were starting to collect soil samples for chemical testing for toxic levels of lead, mercury and PCBs. They were concerned with the areas of Throgs Neck Park, Cryders Point, Le Harve, Fort Totten Park, Douglaston Bay and sections of the Whitestone coast line.

To prevent any appearance of bias, they hired an independent laboratory, York Analytical Labs, which will conduct all the testing and pick up the samples. Beside Cervino, some of the folks involved are Paul Graziano, Gary Bonelli, Robert Bonelli, Sal Bacarella, Paul Bergin, a science research student from St. Francis Prep, and our favorite good guys, the North East Queens Alliance Group.

That’s it for this week.

I look forward to hearing from you with information on people, parties and politics or gossip.

I like receiving your voice mails at 718-767-6484, faxes at 718-746-0066 and e-mails at [email protected].

Till next week, Dee.

More from Around New York