You can find him behind the meat case at Marco’s Deli, watching the news and making chicken sandwiches ($4.00/chicken cutlet, American, mayo, lettuce and tomato on a roll). His name is Mark Sbona– and that’s “zzBona” — but most people call him Marco.

Mark is the first feature of “Outside In,” a weekly Q&A to familiarize Wesleyan with the local Middletown community.

Outside In: What’s your real name Marco?

Marco: Mark, and I’ll spell my last name for you. That’s “S-B-O-N-A.”

O: So it’s —

Marco: –the “s” is pronounced like a “z”

O: “zzBona”

M: Right.

O: You mind me asking when you were born?

M: 1957

O: And how long have you been in Middletown?

M: I’m a lifer.

O: And when did you open up Marco’s?

M: Summer of ’94.

O: Red Sox or Yankees?

M: Yankees. I’ve been a Yankee fan since I was a kid. And they stunk when I was a kid so I’m no bandwagon jumper.

O: Greatest Yankee ever to live?

M: Oh boy, ever lived or I’ve ever seen?

O: Seen.

M: Mantle, he was around. I am little too young but I remember going to the old Yankee stadium with my father. It must have been the early 60s. He would have to be the best.

O: So what’s your best seller around here?

M: This probably sounds weird but your basic ham sandwich would have to be the best.

O: Now, I noticed you always have the news on here. What’s the deal?

M: Yeah, I like to keep up on current events so I can carry on the conversation if someone asks. But I’m about to turn on golf. Tiger Woods is back on tour.

O: What time you usually get here in the morning?

M: Usually 6, open at 8.

O: And you have the news on all day?

M: Yeah, nightly I watch NBC but CBS, CNN, FOX, I watch all ’em of really. I try to get all sides of the story. Each of these news channels has their slant.

O: How much does a cup of coffee go for around here?

M: One dollar.

O: One dollar! That’s pretty good. Sure beats Pi Cafe.

M: Yup, trying to keep coffee reasonable.

O: I know you didn’t think too much of Hillary Clinton. How do you feel about the new administration? Is Barack living up to your expectations?

M: Well you know, you got to give the guy a shot.

O: How about the Bail Out?

M: Don’t like it. I don’t think people should be rewarded for making stupid moves and running around on corporate jets. The first $350 Billion went right out the window. If I did that they’d be saying I deserve to go out of business.

O: Ok, well I’m running out of space on this envelope I’m using to take notes, so do you have anything you’d like to say to Wesleyan students?

M: Eat at Marco’s!

O: Anything for the graduating seniors?

M: Goodluck! I hope things pick up for you because it doesn’t look like the job market is very good right now.

About Andrew Dermont

Andrew Dermont organized the overhaul of the Argus website. He is now the Blargus Editor and oversees the publication of all online-specific content.

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