The word Lena "with a squiggle over the n" means "firewood" in Spanish, explains Dan Catania, and it stands for Lumber Extracters of North America.

That's the name Catania has given his new sideline. This weekend he'll take a small crew to the mountains of West Virginia to cut and load his first 10 cords of wood.

Firewood is an ideal opportunity for the minority businessman, says Catania, who works for the American Savings and Loan League, the trade organization for minority-owned S & L's.

Although demand for firewood is soaring, the big energy companies aren't interested. That's because there are limited economies of scale in the firewood business, Catania contends.

A big corporation has no advantage over a small crew with a chainsaw and a truck. The chainsaw and truck even can be rented, so the cost of getting into the business can be very low.

Initially Catania and company, located at 3135 Lee Highway, Arlington, will cut and load downed trees, hauling the cut and split firewood back to the Washington area for distribution.

The second phase of his plan is to train crews to top and cut trees. Eventually he hopes the venture can be expanded into contract land clearing removing trees for developers or farmers.