Sunday, January 31, 2010

Joan Jett 1987

yeah, late again.....
As I previously posted, I hadn't been able to wrangle anybody into going to a Joan Jett show. I tirelessly told everybody how great she was & my haranguing paid off. Not well for me, however.
I got Bunny to go. Phil came down from Frogtown. So far - so good. Then this drooling idiot from work decided he would tag along, too. With a friend. Bunny & Phil quickly picked up on Larry's goofyness & proceeded to leave me to his antics & enjoy a nice evening themselves. With friends like these.....
As usual, Jett rocked out. I ignored the whole crew during the show. After, we went down the street to Daniels for midnight nachos. Again I was abandoned to entertain Larry & his friend. His friend seemed a bit more rational & a little less brain damaged than Larry, but he was strictly the follower to Larry's lead. It explains a lot about how we choose our politicians in America.
We went back to our cars & encountered some girls with a flat tire. Larry & his pal rushed to their rescue & promptly started to jack the car up on University Ave. I begged them to roll down to a flat bit of road, but no go. I expected to see severed hands any minute. The jack did slip a bit & the chivalrous goonballs, relented & moved the car to a flat piece of road.
We parted ways, everybody went home & as I drifted off to sleep, I wondered what crazy stories Larry would be telling my co-workers come Monday. Never again....

Thursday, January 28, 2010

...only in Northside

A video thrown together by the folks at ...only in Northside (FaceBook).

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Outlawing Style

The Swiss vote to outlaw minarets & now the French are talking about outlawing burqas. I am no fan of Islam but this just seems kinda nuts. Forcing people to wear burqas is sick but forcing them to not wear them?
I don't know where to start on minarets. Seems like they are just a kind of tower. If the Swiss Christians are anything like the Americans, they are probably discarding their traditionally designed churches & moving into abandoned movie theaters & hardware stores or just building concrete & metal "garages". The skylines of cities and villages are no longer punctuated with little steeples poking their heads up over the rest of the rooftops silently declaring themselves as havens of faith & sanctuary. But who is to blame for that? If there are still religious groups doing that kind of thing, more power to 'em.
As far as the burqas go, if they seem to pose a security risk, make the women de-cloak & identify themselves when entering buildings and such. Gotta admit, there are some loopy Muslims out there & if you are identifying as one and hiding your identity, you are going to face some extra scrutiny. Well, unless you reign in on the radical jihadist crowd.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Neighborhood Festivals

Cincinnati has festivals out the wazoo. There are large festivals downtown & smaller festivals in the neighborhoods throughout the year. It's amazing Cincinnatians aren't the fattest, drunkest people on the face of the planet. The thing is, the neighborhood festivals that bring in people from outside the city are few and far between. This is a shame because people that just see the downtown don't get to see what a great place this is to live. Driving everybody to the central business district is not likely going to procure any new residents.
One of the festivals that did bring people from the region into the neighborhoods was the Gay Pride Celebration. It was kind of unique in that it was held in two neighboring neighborhoods, Northside and Clifton and tied them together with a parade over the Ludlow Viaduct (that always seemed like it would be fun). It will be moving downtown this summer as well as moving from June to July 4. This has some Northsidians upset but I doubt the Pride crowd accounted for much of the Rock-n-Roll Carnival & 4th of July Parade crowds. It still sucks in promoting the neighborhood, tho.
I doubt the Harvest Home parade brings in many out-of-towners except for ex-residents. Hyde Park used to host a huge flower show that moved out to Coney Island & has now moved out to the middle of nowhere. Hyde Park is definitely a neighborhood the city should be promoting.
The Pagan Pride celebrations that brought people in from throughout the region used to be in Covington's Goebel Park but had to move for fire and late hours. They operate out of friggin' Batavia, now. That demographic isn't too strong on home buying, tho.
While it's great to bring people to the CBD, it's been discussed ad nauseum about how the sports facilities bring people in but they tend to just shoot right out again after the event. They might spend some money at a bar or restaurant or maybe even stay at a hotel, but I doubt they do much to lure new residents. Showing off our neighborhoods is important to growing the city in a way downtown events just can't.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Addressing a Haggis in the 21st Century

I think I need to re-assess my Scottish heritage.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Miles Davis Music Hall 1987

Davis had been playing professionally for, what, about 45 years? In 1986 he split with Columbia & signed on with Warner Bros and promptly recorded an album with all the latest electronic gadgetry, Tutu.
I was driving a Sentra at the time & the daggone door locks would freeze at about 35°. The temperature took a turn a good bit lower than that the week of the concert. Fortunately, the gf's dad decided he would go to listen to Mr Davis play all his old classic songs from the 40s & 50s. heehee We snagged a ride with him & went on a double date with the gf's rents.
Parking was easy. He was a pastor at a church right across Washington Park, so he had a reserved parking spot. When we got out of the car & commenced heading to Music Hall, the guys made a bee line through the park while the frails veered north to circumvent the park & avoid the drunks in the park. We all stopped & looked at one another. As is their nature, the frails acquiesced.
Had great seats near the center. Since it was an older jazz crowd & we were on a double date with the old folks, I dressed a little better than usual. Through the course of the show, however, I think everyone in our aisle got up & left & came back at least twice & every damn one of those people stepped on my python boots. grrrrrr
The concert was good. Great, actually. In fact it was probably one of the best shows I have ever seen. Noticed one guy sitting there weeping. Dunno if it was the music or something personal, but it was some good music.
Apparently it affected the pastor who preached about it the following Sunday. He had expected to hear more of an oldies show, but Miles Davis doesn't tend to "look back". The pastor was delightfully surprised and enjoyed the "new" stuff quite a bit.
Although this double date went a lot better than the one where we went to the Toledo Art Museum, we never did it again....

Friday, January 22, 2010

Jefferson Airplane 1972

The Airplane had gone through it's innocent folk days, trippy drug phase, modern sodio-political phase and, by 1972, was coming apart at the seams as Kantner was going off on his sci-fi political utopian stuff and Kaukonen & Casady were going off on a blues/rock tangent. The former was experimenting with The Jefferson Starship - the latter with Hot Tuna. Creech just seemed to want to play & Grace Slick was, well, Grace Slick. I believe Joey Covington played drums.
Hell, Slick, with the voice that launched a thousand trips, was now a mom.
The folks in the band were no longer the naive yunguns with a band. They were a professional group that, when pulled together, put on a helluva show. Casady's Yggdrasil bass shook Hara arena that night.
I remember sitting up on the side and enjoying the Heavy Water Light Show.

from the Sunfighter album

My friend Doyle who was on the floor near the front commented later, "There was a light show?"

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Can You Spot the Difference ?

Awhile back, the Bodies folks came through Cincinnati with their troupe of plasticized corpses for a show at the Cincinnati Museum Center. The exhibit displays preserved corpses without skin & in various poses and degrees of dissection in an effort to entertainingly educate people as to the workings of their bodies.
There was an uproar over the exhibit. People claimed the cadavers on display had not consented to having their bodies displayed and might have been prisoners who might have been brutalized or murdered/executed.
Today we have an exhibit, Without Sanctuary, at the NURFC displaying photographs of people who were detained, tortured, mutilated and murdered. I am assuming none of these people consented to having the images of their desecrated bodies put on display.
So what's the difference? Where is the outrage?
Is the lynching exhibit ok because it is just photographs? Is it the age of the photography? Would 70 year old porn be ok?
With the Bodies show, the history of the people was questionable. In the Lynching show, there might be some question, but for the most part the focus is people who definitely suffered what Bodies folks might have suffered. With the Bodies show, the people were faceless literally. In the Lynching show, people are, mostly recognizable if not identified.
I could postulate on why people are viewing the exhibits differently, but I won't bother here. I think it is a double standard, tho. Ultimately the chore of respecting the dead lies in the individual. If you are confronted with a skinned plasticized corpse or an image of mutilated, tortured lynching victim - that person led a life & now they are being used for entertainment/human interest purposes by people who think they are operating in society's best interest, so remember the golden rule.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Emerson Lake & Palmer 1976

This concert was at an odd venue, The Columbus Fairgrounds Coliseum. This, of course, was the same arena where the Springfield Wildcats defeated the Akron South Cavaliers to take the 1950 state basketball championship.
You usually go to fairgrounds in the late summer in the daytime. It's usually hot & humid, generally nasty & full of family types with plenty of screaming maggots. It was kinda surreal to be out in the silent, dark, cold in a stark abandoned fairgrounds huddled amongst a bunch of 70s something rejects outside a decrepit hall. Columbus is flat. The fairgrounds were flatter. It was friggin' cold, man. Naturally the management decided to leave us outside even after the gate opening time came & went.
The band hadn't released any albums for awhile. They toured with an orchestra at some point & lost their shirts. This show was just the trio. I remember it being a good show. All three were excellent musicians. I am really puzzled as to why they seem to have just disappeared. Disco, New wave & punk were emerging & ELP's classical jazz thing was passe. Thing was, tho, these guys rocked out really hard in concerts.
The Columbus Fairgrounds Coliseum sucked as a venue. It made Cincinnati Gardens look like a palace. Apparently it was recently renovated. Lipstick on a pig.....

Monday, January 18, 2010

PacMan Sighted in Greece

NASA Astro Picture of the day

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Nobody Wants to Deal With Your Fat Dead Ass

or, Live fast, die young, and leave a beautiful corpse.....

A fella at Littleton & Rue Funeral Home in Springfield, OH, has taken to evangelizing the virtues of a healthy lifestyle through his Live Now initiative. Does he just not want to work on big heavy corpses? Actually, he just sees the effects of sedentary lifestyles every day & wants to do something about it. He knows he's gonna get ya sooner or later but would just as soon let it be later.
Some statistics from The Healthy Ohio Program that led to the LiveNow idea.
35 % of Clark County adults are obese.
24.5 % of Hamilton County residents are obese.
Heart disease, cancer, stroke, lower respiratory disease, diabetes and unintentional injuries accounted for 69.7 % of the resident deaths from 2004-2006.
Hamilton County is slightly better at 64.5 %.
In Ohio, 33 percent of children — more than the national average — are considered overweight or obese.
The LiveNow website lists ideas, events and resources to getting started on that more active lifestyle you vowed to live on January 1 & forgot about January 3. The organization is planning on partnering with other groups involved in fitness & health like the Y.
It seems kinda counter intuitive but Cincinnati, although larger than Springfield, is really a better town for walking and biking with all the little neighborhoods that offer many of the amenities of a small town.
Maybe the funeral director should try resurrecting non-motorized funerals with mourners walking behind a horse drawn hearse.
Noose Son story here.

Saturday, January 16, 2010


WHUM, over there in sunny Columbus, Hoosierland promises alternative, reggae, new age, inca, classic country, medieval, Irish, bluegrass, folk, oldies, celtic, adult standards, classic rock & adult contemporary.
"But, Quimbob, how do we pick up stations in far off Indiana on our crappy little crystal sets?" you ask.
Dust off your computer & open this address in your trusty copy of VLC.
Use File>Open Network
MMS is a proprietary protocol from the fine folks at M$oft, so, if you are on a Mac, you will need one of those fancy plug-ins called Flip4Mac. It's FREE!
No clue about on listening on Linux.
Listening in iTunes is kinda nuts.
Here are instructions. It requires Quicktime Pro which is not free.

Sail On

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Hey, Pat !

hey Pat! The "Haitians" who were "under the heel" of the French didn't make a pact with "the devil". They were Africans who reaffirmed their own native faith in a war with people who worshipped your god! You know, the one that apparently gave them the green light on trafficking in human flesh? Their poverty came from good Christian Europeans & Americans not recognizing and not trading with their new country. Hispanola is not the natural resource cow like the U.S. is. Their unstable government came out of an ostracized & desperate society in poverty. Their condition was due to the fine Christian folks of your home state, Virginia. It's not magic, Pat. It's racist politics justified by your religion, our fine banking system and a paranoid monied elite that you are part of - thanks to your swindling people in the name of your god.

Video via Media Matters
Haiti Earthquake Registers 7.0

Haiti, our Caribbean neighbor to the south suffered a tremendous earthquake yesterday. Haiti's denuded hilly terrain makes the impoverished country particularly susceptible to damage from hurricanes & earthquakes. They get hurricanes all the time. Now they have had the worst earthquake in their nation's history.
Ways to help the country that should have been a U.S. ally from their beginning:
Red Cross International Response Fund
The U.S. State Dept. recommends Center for International Disaster Information
Partners in Health
Locally, Matthew 25 Ministries
Also, Vodou Aid altho I could find no listing of these guys on the sits that rate charities. They might just be too small.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Driving Safety

Advocates for Highway Safety gave Ohio one of it's lowest grades. Why? Because Ohio doesn't see not wearing a seatbelt as a primary offense. You have to be stopped for something else like speeding to be punished for violating the mandatory seatbelt law. Ohio also doesn't have a law banning texting while driving. While Ohio communities lay off police and Sheriff deputies this coalition of insurance companies want them to start poking around & seeing what people are doing inside their cars.
Meanwhile, over in scenic Holland, traffic engineers are trying out using fewer signs, lights and regulations to improve driving safety. Their theory is that drivers are lulled into a sense of safety by all the signage & crap cluttering up the side of the road. They have found that drivers frequently give bicyclists a wider berth when there is no designated lane than when there is one. That is - keeping the driver on his toes, he is more likely to pay attention to what he is doing.
If the driver needs to pay attention one could presume he would be less likely to engage in other activities like texting. If one is more concerned with the total driving experience he will more likely buckle up before starting out.
The ranking is probably hogwash & is just an excuse for the insurance companies to justify raising rates on Ohio drivers - real safety be damned.

Noose Son story here.

Examiner story here
No! It's Johnson! Or...

In the first Tremont City council meeting of 2010, councilwoman Paula Johnson presided as mayor. Defeated mayoral candidate Tony Flood was appointed to Johnson's vacant seat. Dunno why he wasn't made mayor. Johnson, a 12 year veteran of the council, is Tremont City's first female mayor. Maybe...
David Shaw, who might be a resident of the city, still believes he is the actual mayor but did not attend the meeting. Maybe it's just his wife who thinks he is mayor.
Stay tuned - there has got to be a twin, separated at birth and raised in Mechaicsburg, somewhere.

Noose Son story here.

Saturday, January 09, 2010

RIP John Ferritto

The Springfield Symphony Orchestra Maestro led the symphony, a veritable band of gypsies, from Springfield Memorial Hall (condemned) to Springfield North High (demolished) to Kuss Auditorium in his 30 years with the orchestra.

Noose Son story here

Friday, January 08, 2010

Because it's Friday

A long time ago in a Frogtown far far away, I remember fiddling with the TV late one night. The planets must have been in some strange configuration as a staticy, snowy image appeared on the screen. Some old guy standing behind a bar rambling in a loud, shrill sort of way. A giant stuffed spider came swinging down at him from the rafters. He ducked only to come up yelling and beating a rubber chicken on the bar as he and the producer exchanged in looney conversation. I sat - blinking, my fragile eggshell mind reeling.
Later, after moving to Cincinnati, where, for some time I had no TV, I learned of the late night movie host, Bob Shreve. I think about the guy from time to time. There used to be a lot of these local hosts. Elvira got started as one. Dayton had Dr Creep and Cincinnat had The Cool Ghoul for horror movies but Shreve hosted all manner of movies with his Past Prime Playhouse.
The above clip seems to capture a time long past in Cincinnati. There was a local culture that was kind of institutionalized in a top down sort of way. That has faded away in banal corporate homogenization & been replaced with a more bottom up culture. The clip above kind of captures that old local personality.
For a more modern local institution, I suggest Art Damage, the founders of which really got the whole old-school live local thing.
There is also, WAIF & Media Bridges, altho these guys are young amateurs and lack the experience and, dare I say, depth of Shreve.

Bob Shreve website which looks fairly abandoned. Most of what you find on YouTube is ads for the show & not the actual show, unfortunately.

UPDATE: There are 3 episodes for sale on DVD from Jeff Kidwell who can also be reached at 859-655-3330 in historic Newport, Kentucky !

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

With the imminent White Death approaching, it is important, of course, to stock up on milk & bread. It is also important to recognize your responsibility to help keep things moving & this includes facilitating your mail carrier & keeping pedestrian vermin out of the road. You can do your part by shoveling your damn sidewalk.
Like living in a nice walkable neighborhood? Make sure it stays that way.
The idea that you can be sued for someone falling down on your sidewalk after you shovel is an urban myth. It is expected of an Ohio resident to know the natural hazards inherent in living in Ohio. You can be held liable if you go out and hose down your sidewalk when you know it is going to freeze.
Cincinnati ordinance on snow removal:
Sec. 723-57. Removal of Snow.
The owner, occupant or other person having the care of any building premises or unimproved lot of land abutting any street where there is a graded sidewalk or a sidewalk graded and paved, shall, within the first four hours after daylight after the ceasing to fall of any snow, cause the same to be removed from the paved or traveled part of such sidewalk. The provisions of this section shall also apply to the falling of snow or ice from any building onto a sidewalk.
Snow or ice shall not be moved into the gutter when the gutter has been previously cleaned, and in no event shall snow or ice from any area other than the pedestrian walk be moved into the gutter.
(C.O. 702-33; renumbered to C.M.C. 723-57, eff. Jan. 1, 1972)
Cross references: Penalty, § 723-99-I.

Sunday, January 03, 2010

The Fishwrap was pondering the political future of failed mayoral candidate Brad Wenstrup. Or, should I say failed first time candidate? While the last mayoral campaign was lame, to say the least, Wensttrup held his own ok, even if a significant portion of his votes might have been anti-Mallory votes.
Now HamCoGOP chair, Alex Triantafilou, wants to run his boy again. He's just not sure where.
Wenstrup appears to be into the whole public service thing & his work in the military bears that out. His first elective try being for an executive office was pretty far fetched. The HamCoGOP seems to not have a problem with this, tho. They like the idea of putting out a pretty face for the votes & then running the show from behind.
"Brad is not the kind of guy who sits around thinking about his next move on the chess board,'' said Hamilton County Republican Party (chair) Alex Triantafilou. "Frankly, I'm the one doing it for him. I want to see him run for office, and sooner rather than later."
While I doubt Wenstrup is the type to shoot from the hip, like presidential puppet George W Bush, his background in medicine & the military probably have him conditioned to be able to make quick & considered decisions. Triantafilou might want to ride his horse to the White House but I am thinking Wenstrup's background might make him a better candidate for Sheriff. He would need to find some law enforcement support for the position. Replacing the current chief deputy with a younger, more aggressive law enforcement wonk would be a good move for Wenstrup and the county as well. His medical and management experience would be good in managing jails. His military medical experience would lend itself to securing the courthouse. The more I think about it, the more the guy seems like the best candidate to replace Leis than I have seen for some time. It might not be the glory post Triantafilou might like, but from what I have heard of Wenstrup, he is not likely to want to be a pretty mouthpiece for a second rate Rovian-wannabe GOP puppet master. Maybe the local GOP should try to do what's best for the county than try to foil Democrats at every turn.
But he (Triantafilou), like others in Cincinnati political circles, are convinced that if suburban Hamilton County voters had somehow been able to vote on Cincinnati mayor this year, Wenstrup would be sitting in the mayor's ground-floor office at City Hall right now.
Can't argue with logic like that. Maybe if, somehow, Centaurs could vote.....
Why is the local GOP so pointless ?

Fishwrap story here.

Saturday, January 02, 2010


2010 Is looking up !