For every decade added to their neighborhood's age, women's risk of obesity decreased 8 percent and men's obesity risk fell 13 percent. Researchers found that people with old homes are slimmer because old neighborhoods are more walkable. "The data show that how and where we live can greatly affect our health," said Ken Smith, a professor of family and consumer studies at the University of Utah. His study examined height and weight data from driver's licenses of 453,927 residents in Utah and compared them with census data on median housing age.
Sunday, August 31, 2008
There is an entire site, TheUpTake, reporting how the police in The Twin Cities are raiding homes and arresting citizens who are protesting the Republican National Convention.
Check it out. It's kind of scary what big brother is capable of. And to think this comes from the party that claims to want small Government...
Friday, August 29, 2008
This article sums up why I still have no interest in supporting the GOP:
Hopefully you can see that once John "No Regulation" McCain dies in office, we'd be left with someone who has only the experience of managing a village, not a country. That would be bad. Very bad.
"Today, John McCain put the former mayor of a town of 9,000 with zero foreign policy experience a heartbeat away from the presidency," Obama spokesman Bill Burton said in a statement. [emphasis mine]
Burton also criticized Palin as a vice presidential pick for her support of oil drilling in the Alaskan wilderness and her anti-abortion stance, referring to the 1973 Supreme Court decision that made abortion legal in the United States.
"Governor Palin shares John McCain's commitment to overturning Roe v. Wade, the agenda of Big Oil and continuing George Bush's failed economic policies. That's not the change we need, it's just more of the same," he said.
The choice of Palin was seen as a bold effort by McCain to attract disgruntled Democratic and independent supporters of Senator Hillary Clinton, who was defeated by Obama in the race to be the Democratic Party's presidential nominee.
Palin, a telegenic conservative, has led the oil-producing northwestern US state since December 2006 and was the first woman and youngest person to hold that state's top job.
I cannot wait for the debate between zero-experience Governor Palin and well-tested veteran Senator Biden. That will be one slaughtering I will not want to miss.
"My electric went out right before I could switch the laundry from the washer to the dryer!"
"My boyfriend broke up with me and moved out right before rent was due!"
I hear people say it all the time. "Go Figure". You've probably said it. Hell, I know I've probably said it. But, really...what does it mean? Literally, the definitions are as follows:
- Go: travel: change location; move, travel, or proceed, also metaphorically
- Figure:a diagram or picture illustrating textual material
So traveling picture? Proceeding diagram? An illustrated change in location? THAT DOESN'T MAKE SENSE PEOPLE! "Go figure" is always used as a response to a dilemma or disturbing event, yet the words have almost nothing to do with, well...anything! It's almost a knee-jerk response. "I really have no idea how to respond to your shitty life, so I'll just spew out some silly words that I don't even know what they mean. Go figure!"
I'm pretty sure this was found somewhere in The South...Alabama? Arkansas? Either way, I'd be willing to bet money this came from some numskull who wants a law requiring English to be designated as the *official* language of The United States and that anyone who doesn't speak English be kicked outta dis' here country!
What bothers me about that is this--it's limiting. While it's not uncommon for Europeans to speak fluently two or three languages, here in the US it's considered unique if you've mastered two languages, and genius if you're accomplished three. By forcing anyone who comes to this country to abandon who they are and learn "our ways" would be anathema to what this country stands for. We are a country of immigrants, a stewpot of people, values, beliefs, morals and opinions. But we are united under the cause and fundamental belief that tomorrow can be better than it is today. I don't ever want to change that cause. I don't want to ever imagine my country as limiting.
I'll take this time to say that I'll be blogging from Chicago and possibly Milwaukee the week of September 15th - 19th. I'm really excited because I am trying to do the cheapest vacation I've ever done. First off, I'm using the Megabus to travel between Columbus and Chicago. The cost? $30.50 roundtrip. From there, I'll be staying with friends, and the train between Milwaukee and Chicago is only $18 each way for students with Student Advantage. On top of that, I'll be checking out free museums, hanging with friends in coffee shops and utilizing the El to get around. My goal is to spend under $200 for the entire trip....think it's doable?
I'll be writing about the whole experience, and I'll see if cheap vacations are just as fun as regular vacations! Expect a full review of the Megabus, too, since if it's good it may be something you want to consider. I mean, a $30 ticket to one of the greatest cities in the world is already something to holler about!
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Via Google Reader and Columbus Underground, someone posted that a window just fell out of the Huntington building! I'm hoping everyone is alright...but, try to avoid driving down High Street! It's shut down at the square!
:collective children's voice: "YAY!!!"
"Open your bibles to 2 Kings 2:24...the story of the children and the bears! We even have a picture to share with you..."
"And thus we now know that God is love and His Word is love! He loves ALL the children!"
:uncontrollable amounts of children screaming:
"What's the matter children? Why can't you see how much God loves you?"
...the most disturbing book ever. Period.
(Via Friendly Atheist)
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
The interior is beautiful yet lacking that haughty ostentation that is suddenly becoming popular among quaint cafes. (This is a good thing). The Italian influenced menu features an assortment of traditional entrees, from pizzas to lasanga, salads to paninis (even in 'mini' size!) and of course a great selection of gelato and sorbet. I selected the Enzo Panini ($6.50) and absolutely loved it. (I mean, who would complain with a marriage of prosciutto, sopressata and a light white cheese served with a dash of an italian blend dressing? Just writing about it I'm getting hungry again!) The ciabatta bread itself was so soft it had to have been baked within a few hours of me devouring it. It was delicious!
The rest of menu was certainly tempting, though I could only eat so much! However, I'll just note that the prices were extremely reasonable, especially considering the fresh ingredients, satisfying portions and the comfortable ambiance. On top of that, the staff was beyond friendly; I was asked no less than three times if I was enjoying my meal! Simply across the board, I was very impressed and will have to extend my biking limits to 161 in order to fit in more Caffe Daniela!
Caffe Daniela is located at 650 N. High Street in Worthington, Ohio. You can contact them at (614) 436-0139. (Will Shilling Photo courtesy of Columbus Alive!)
Monday, August 25, 2008
Hooray! Only an 8-year war!!!
Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki says the United States has agreed in negotiations to withdraw all its troops from Iraq by 2011.
But U.S. officials insist no deal has been reached.
Mr. Maliki Monday said his government has reached an agreement with Washington that any foreign presence on Iraqi soil will end by 2011. He did not offer any further details.
Meanwhile, a spokesman for U.S. President George Bush said there has not been any final security deal with Iraq.
It doesn't surprise me that after the Iraqi Government has begged the US leave "no matter the condition of Iraq", The Bush Administration still won't take the hint. Even now when Iraq says, "Fine, if you won't immediately get out, please just leave within 3 years!", Mr. Bush still wants to stay longer!
Interesting, in another article, the Government spokesman for Iraq, Ali al-Dabbagh, is quoted as saying, "When the date is expired, they cannot stay even one more day in the country, for they have no more pretexts to do so then".
After a comment like that, do you really think they even want us there now?
It just irks me.
Sunday, August 24, 2008
Well, that's interesting. Why is it that almost none of McCain's videos talk about him? Is it because he's just that lacking? I know they exist, but for every positive video about about John McCain, there are three campaign videos that are attacking Barack Obama. (Check his main page. Ten videos; 7 negative solely about Barack Obama, 3 positive about John McCain).
Saturday, August 23, 2008
- First, there was this new bar opening next to the High Beck! I can't remember the name, but it was something like Bole'. It had the tag line "Ultra Lounge", which is something that usually perks my interest (pending it's casual, relaxed). Should be interesting! :-)
- The Grange Insurance building is coming along real nicely! They had this beautiful (yet incomplete) bridge from the parking lot to the building itself. It reminded me of the skyways in Minneapolis (or our own in the Nationwide Headquarters). Although I doubt it will be a part of the Columbus Skyline (too short, too far away from the square), it's still a nice addition to High Street. And anything that brings more people from the suburbs to the city makes me happy!
- Although still barely even started, the new courthouse downtown has its first pillars up!
- Note to self: Don't bike south on Third! Trying to fight with commuters coming onto/leaving the Highway is never a good idea!
- Whatever it is they're building across from The High Five (an old laundry mat was there) is looking pretty good! They still have a ton more to do, but I'm certainly curious what will end up being there.
- The new Student Union looks GREAT! Too bad it's still well over a year away...
- As a side note, it still irks me that as a student at The Ohio State University, I will never have been able to utilize a main library nor a student union.
"More than 100 years ago, a new statue standing tall in New York Harbor gave our nation its greatest symbol of freedom," he told the audience in Las Vegas. "In this century, that freedom is being undermined by dependence on foreign oil. So I think it would be a thing of beauty if, when Lady Liberty looks out on the horizon, she not only welcomes new immigrants, but lights their way with a torch powered by an ocean wind farm."He's a good guy. He's a good mayor. But this is a weird idea. Windmills on top of skyscrapers? I don't know if I'd be down with that.
Mr. Bloomberg, thought by some to be a potential presidential candidate, is pinning much of his political legacy on green initiatives. He tried, but failed, this spring to introduce a congestion fee on Manhattan drivers in a bid to reduce traffic and encourage more reliance on public transportation.
Undeterred by that setback, he recently introduced a $2.3-billion (U.S.) plan to cut emissions from city agencies by 30 per cent within the next 10 years - an effort he hopes will "embarrass" the federal government, and force it to make energy conservation a priority.
Now he has solicited responses from companies on how the city can derive more power from wind turbines, tidal currents, solar panels and geothermal energy.
Josh Magee, research director at Emerging Energy Research in Cambridge, Mass., said some of these proposals, like the offshore farms, are more viable than others, because of the city's coastal positioning and the prevailing wind currents. Although this power can be expensive, it would provide the city with a natural hedge against volatile price swings in the natural-gas market, on which New York relies heavily for its power needs.
The notion of affixing windmills on the top of skyscrapers, however, appears to be far-fetched, given the turbulence and wind shear they would face at this altitude.
"Quite simply put," said, Mr. Magee "the current wind turbine technology is not designed for installation at those heights."
Goodness people, would you cry a river, build a bridge and get over it? I was checking out what bloggers are saying about Obama's VP selection--great choice, it's exactly who he needed--and over at this site here there is a thread that begins with this comment:
what do you think about the Obama campaign sending out the text messages beginning at 3AM (confirmed by CNN). Am I crazy in seeing this as a politically tone deaf dig at Hillary [?]
Oh come on! SHE LOST! Stop trying to turn everything he does as some jab at Hillary Clinton. He doesn't care about her. America doesn't care about her. NO ONE CARES ABOUT HER! Get off your silly PUMA bandwagon and step in line--we have an election to win! Do you really think the Obama campaign is that concerned with the person they defeated months ago?
They sent the text message out at 3 AM because Barack promised his supporters that he would let them know, via text, who was his VP selection. (It's how I got the news.) However, word began leaking around 1 AM on Foxnews.com and other sources, and thus they got that "3 AM call" and made the decision to send out the message at that time--in order to stick to their promise. They also sent out the message at 3 AM in order to let the news hit the media before the morning.I doubt it made it into the papers (I haven't checked mine yet), but the world is waking up to the news of Obama's VP selection. I think that's smart, not vindictive.
Here are a few other choice comments...
"there is one and only one reason to send those messages at 3am. they thought it would be funny to kick Hillary in the teeth. plain and simple."
"How many times do people have to see Barack Obama doing petty vengeful things toward Hillary Clinton to get the message? This "3 a.m." text message was clearly deliberate."
"You know, I think they hate the Clintons far more than any republicans ever did. They want to crush her so badly they can taste it."
"All the Hillary whiners should go cry in the corner and let everyone else get on with the election process."
That last one is my personal favorite!
Friday, August 22, 2008
Oh, sometimes it just hurts to read what John McCain says.
In a recent 12,000-word statement about his "torture"* in North Vietnam, John McCain had the following to say about his treatment on the other side of the world:
"Some guards would just come in and do their job. When they were told to beat you they would come in and do it. Some seemed to get a big bang out of it. A lot of them were homosexual, although never toward us. Some, who were pretty damned sadistic, seemed to get a big thrill out of the beatings."
So, there you have it. The gays tortured him. Those silly homos! Is that why they call everything "fierce"?
*(Now, I say "tortured", because according to John McCain himself, his torture methods included sleep deprivation, beatings, stress positions, long-time standing and the refusal for medical care. According to The United States and how we treat our prisoners, John McCain was not tortured. We do this on a daily basis to our prisoners, and we actually use worse tactics in certain situations. The Bush Administration continues to claim that we do not torture our prisoners. And thus, if that is true, John McCain was never tortured.)
I almost never write fiction, but this was one piece that I actually liked enough to finish. It's completely different from how I usually write, so it was sort of fun.
Also, to RSS Subscribers...I don't know how it works, but if you ended up getting the whole thing in your feed...sorry! I was trying to avoid that from happening, so I posted the story at a earlier date, thus keeping it off the main page.
Anyway, hope you enjoy! :-)
Thursday, August 21, 2008
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Young people do not drink Scotch. It's a sad fact, but it comes from the irrefutable truth: Scotch is harsh. When you sip Laphroaig, a Scotch made on the island of Islay (pronounced "eye-luh"), you may think you're drinking a concoction made for medicinal purposes. It is not pleasant. But thankfully the world of Scotch is not limited just to the burning flavors of Talisker or the peppery notes of Caol Illa. With the work of great blenders such as Johnie Walker, the world of Scotch has been transformed into one of Scotland's greatest production as well as one of their major economical resource.
Scotch, first off, is a whisky made exclusively in Scotland. Notice that Americans write whisky, such as Bourbon whiskey, with a letter E: "whiskey". Not important, but still a fun fact. There are a few legal requirements in order to be considered and marketed as a Scotch: it must be distilled from water and Barley, it must be no more than 94% alcohol, and it must be in oak casks for a minimum of three years, although typically Scotch sits anywhere from 10-25 years in oak. From here, there are four types of Scotch: Single-Malt, Vatted Malt, Blended and Single-Grain. Each is entirely different and produces noticeable distinctions.
Single-Malts are made exclusively from one distiller, in the same way that most wines are harvested from a single vineyard. An example of this would be Glenfiddich or Glenlivet. This is the purest form of Scotch; you are not bombarded with an array of flavors, but rather a somewhat aggressive and toasty spirit. Single-grain is just how the name implies--Scotch distilled from a single grain, such as 100% barley or rye Scotch. Vatted-malts, a more uncommon Scotch, are made entirely with malt whiskey. You will never find a grain whiskey used in vatted-malts.
Blended Scotches are what I would recommend to any young person interested in learning more about Scotch. In even the most basic of Blended Scotches, you will see anywhere between 20-40 different scotches blended to reach a unique and perfect appeal. Since Johnnie Walker is the number one selling Scotch (and spirit) in the world, that's what I have decided to highlight: the Five Labels of J.W. But first, a brief history.
Johnnie Walker was an actual person, a Scottish man who bought a grocery store in 1820 that specialized in distilling Scotch. The history of J.W. is very interesting, as the major reason for its success and global acceptance is the downfall of others. In the early 20th century France had a catastrophe to their treasured vineyards, leaving the drinkers of the time lonely and looking for something new. The Scotches of Johnnie Walker (now deceased) filled this gap. As well, with prohibition in United States, JW was smuggled into the country through both Canada and Latin America--and now you almost immediately have a world-wide known spirit. They are best known for the 5 major blended scotches, which use Scotch from both the highlands and the lowlands (two vital parts of Scotland, but I guess that will have to wait), as well as many different islands.
Johnnie Walker Red
The simplest way to remember this is by the color: red, the color of fire. This Scotch is a burning and smoky one with plenty of character. It is not easy to drink straight, so it's best on the rocks with a splash of water. Even though it is notably coarse, it still is the best selling Scotch in the world. It is important to know that there really isn't an age associated with it, since the blend has 35 different Scotches with anywhere from 3-10 years of aging in oak casks.
Johnnie Walker Black
Black is the color of elegance, and what a perfect descriptor for JW Black Label. This recipe has been around since 1909 and has the round texture of smooth ice. It can be sipped neat or on the rocks, but I enjoy it with a bit of orange. The blend contains a minimum of 12 year-old Scotch, although there are a few single-malts included in this blend that are aged longer. Tasting note wise, the texture is the main observation. As previously described, it is as smooth as ice and as subtle as a breeze. It also does have a hint of orange. A fun fact, this was the choice of drink for Winston Churchill.
Johnnie Walker Green
A blended Scotch with a minimum of 15 years of aging. This beautiful Scotch has a bouquet of floral and herbal flavors, mint being the dominant. Drinks easy, though the texture is not as elegant as the JW Black. It's interesting that the red has a blend of 35 single-malts, while the green only contains four: Caol Illa, Talisker, Craggan Moore and Linkwood.
Johnnie Walker Gold
My personal affordable favorite! Being that the blue is around $200 a bottle, I'm quite satisfied with Gold, which is around $70. It is a Scotch Blend that is aged for a minimum of 18 years, displaying a bold conglomeration of palatable flavors. The most apparent flavor is dark chocolate, a unique flavor for a Scotch. It also has hints of vanilla and pineapple, leaving the drinker with a feeling redolent of a dessert course. Personally I think a splash of Godiva Dark Chocolate Liquor does wonders to this, accentuating the decadent qualities in this luscious Scotch. (Though purists would scream at even the suggestion.)
Johnnie Walker Blue
The magnum opus of Blended Scotches, Johnnie Walker Blue Label has a variety of Scotches between 40 and 60 years of aging in oak. When you sip this masterpiece, you are sipping Scotch that began development in the 1930's and 1940's. A major reason I am such a wine and spirit fan is the fact that when I drink a collectible such as a 1909 Georges D'Latour, I'm not only drinking a craft nearly 100 years in the making...I'm drinking a piece of history. I wonder, "What was going on as these grapes were being cultivated?" The development of a new nation, the battle for acceptance of slaves now as free people, the debate over if women can vote or not, the division between the North and South parts of America...that was all going on as these grapes were planted!
The same concept applies to this Scotch, and it only further multiples the beauty of it. The tasting notes I read once stated that, "Johnnie Walker Blue is an unparalleled symphony of notes including smoke, dried fruit, cream, polished floors and lanolin." I agree. This Scotch has been around since 1888 and it seems it will not be going away. At around $200 a 750 mL, this is only to be saved for the most rare and celebratory occasions.
After this brief lesson you should at least know to identify the major components of Single-Malts and Blended Scotch. Remember, when tasting Scotch, it's first best to swirl the Scotch in a snifter to coat all edges of the glass, giving the most noticable aromas. Now nose the Scotch (not too close, unlike wine, since this has a higher alcohol percentage and that can mute your senses), but do so keeping your mouth open! (Robert Sickler, the only Master of Whisky in the state of Ohio, pointed this out to me, and it's amazing how many more flavors you can sense when your mouth is left open! Try this for wine and food, too!). After experiencing the aroma, sip a small portion and make sure to allow the liquid to hit all corners of your mouth. Remember that your mouth has different taste buds that sense different things, so if you immediately swallow you will miss out on a good portion of the flavors. Then, after allowing the Scotch to rest in your palate for a moment, swallow and enjoy the burning rush that Scotch gives. And now, you will have properly tasted a Scotch.
Delta Goodrem broke into the American market a fews month ago with her self-titled album, Delta. It is an absolutely incredible album that showcases both her vocal talent and her mastery of the ivory keys. Her songs are unique, her voice is stunning, her lyrics are compelling...it's pretty much everything you'd want in a singer.
Anyway, here are a few of my favorite songs:
(Also note not all of these are music videos, more like fan vids. It's all I could find, sorry!)
Sorry I know that's a lot of YouTube videos...but she's just so good! Ok ok ok...just one more...I promise! This one is my absolute favorite. I literally have already listened to it over 100 times on my iPod! (Ok, call me a 12 year-old girl, I don't care. DON'T JUDGE ME! I LOVE DELTA GOODREM)
The world will experience a serious oil supply crunch within five to ten years unless there is a collapse in oil demand. This is the conclusion of a new Chatham House report, The Coming Oil Supply Crunch, which predicts a resulting oil price spike that could exceed $200 a barrel.
Professor Paul Stevens, the report's author, explains the dynamics of current high prices in comparison with past oil shocks. The report argues that not enough money and expertise were invested in the 1990s to maintain excess capacity to produce crude oil if consumption continues along present trends. History shows us that whenever such excess capacity is run down, the oil price rises sharply.
All the more reason to sell your car and move to the city.
Sen. Joe Lieberman, completing a dramatic political transformation over the last eight years, is now scheduled to speak at the Republican National Convention next month, according to GOP sources.
The Connecticut senator, who calls himself an "independent Democrat" and attends some Democratic meetings on Capitol Hill, has become one of the McCain's closet allies, campaigning with him everywhere and rumored to be on his list of potential running mates.
So he lost as a Democrat, won as an Independent, and sold out as a Republican. It's Washington, it's politics, it figures.
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
According to research at UCLA -- Law, San Francisco remains the gay mecca it's generally been heralded. Here is the list of the largest gay populations in America per capita:
(% of total population/estimated total GLBT population)
- San Francisco :
- 8.2% / 256,311
- 6.5% / 154,835
- 6.2% / 201,344
- 6.1% / 94,027
- 5.9% / 119,044
- 5.9% / 61,732
- 5.8% / 99,626
- 5.7% / 130,472
- 5.7% / 81,272
- 5.6% / 49,000
- 5.5% / 81,759
- 5.5% / 66,300
When you look at that list, that's really the whole gamut. You've got coast-to-coast(Seattle-Hartford), South (Austin), Midwestern (Columbus), Northeastern (Boston), Northern-Midwest (Minneapolis), West (Denver)...it really shows the spectrum of gays in this country. Looks like what they say is really true--gays are people, too! They're not just an illusion nor a media creation!
What hit the rock bottom of the gay city list? Pittsburgh. 2.8% of their population is estimated to be gay. I guess they don't call it "The Rust Belt" for nothing, right?
Monday, August 18, 2008
Sunday, August 17, 2008
I'm in Cleveland right now, my grandfather is in the hospital. Also, I have finals this upcoming week. I'm now broke, exhausted, stressed and worried...all at the same time!
In the end, I always find that the worst of times turn out to be the best of times. I'll get through it just fine. Hopefully I'll be back ready to update more tomorrow.
Thursday, August 14, 2008
Do you ever get annoyed hearing those words ring over and over in your head? My Chinchilla is in the hospital. He's sick. And I keep telling myself everything is going to be alright. But what if it's not true? What am I going to do if everything doesn't turn out alright?
It's hard for him to breathe. The Vet has him in a small cage and he's huddled in a corner, resting on a blanket. He's hunched over because he's trying to find comfort in his predicament--gas has collected in his intestines and only medicine can help relieve it.
Everything is going to be alright...
Earlier he rested on my shoulder. I was wearing a collared shirt and he stuck his little Chinchilla head under one of the collars to help shield himself from the light. It's hard for him to be around loud noises and bright lights right now. I just take my hand and hold him close to me.
The Vets don't know what to do so they're keeping him overnight. They'll take good care of him, I say to myself. He's been X-Rayed, shot-up with meds, given plenty of love and certainly a ton of attention. I keep holding him expecting him to burst back to his usual bouncy self.
Everything is going to be alright...
When I first adopted him he was sitting in my car when I said,"Theodore, you're going to grow old with me! You know you chinchillas live like 15 years, right?" I remember taking him home and telling him, "Theodore, I hope you like cold weather, because in just a few years we'll be going to grad school up north!" I dreamed about how he would be with me for all of it--undergrad, grad school and then my grand life living and working in the city. I remember telling him, "Theodore, no matter what guys I meet, no matter who comes and goes along the way...I'll always have you".
Everything is going to be alright...
Usually he scampers all over the place, exploring every little inch he can get his little paws on. Normally he sniffs my hand searching it out for a treat. But today he's lifeless, lethargic, reluctant, motionless...just laying in my arms. He normally likes snuggling up to me.
But why not anymore? Why is he just laying there? Can't he wake up? Why won't he wake up?
Everything is going to be alright...everything is going to be alright...
Theodore died this evening. He was such a good Chinchilla.
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Mozilla Firefox recently launched in Japan, and to market to the Japanese they have reworked their mascot. Meet...Foxkeh!
Foxkeh may just be the cutest thing I've ever seen...and he has a blog! He dreams of one day being a real internet browser, and someday maybe even being the very best! How adorable!
Hailing from my home, PG County, Maryland--an area so ghetto there is actually a YahooAsk article about the crime levels--Isis says she is a "woman born physically male". She will be the first transgender to compete on the hit reality TV show, America's Next Top Model.
I have to admit, she looks pretty good. I'm just certain the wingnuts are going to shit a brick over this one.
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
Summit Beach Park was the short-lived home of the monorail, as just a few years after building the ride, Summit Beach Park fumbled and the monorail was inevitably shut down.
Hope wasn't lost though. Workers of the Mechanical Handling Co. deconstructed the monorail and moved it to Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio. At the time, the park was nothing special--yet this new attraction suddenly grew to be the most exciting ride at the park, carrying as many as 13,000 riders per day.
Then came Disney. That very same year they also introduced a monorail system, yet they had the effrontery to say it was "the first of its kind in America".
Eventually the monorail was scrapped. But, props to Ohioans for yet again leading the frontier on transportation experiments, good and bad.
Monday, August 11, 2008
"Despite the efforts of Bikes Belong to bring 1,000 free "rental" bicycles to Denver for the Democratic National Convention this month, there will be no bike parking at either the Pepsi Center or Invesco Field during the events. The Secret Service has declared that bicycles are a security risk bringing back images of the police crackdown on NYC Critical Mass in August of 2004."
Because if I wanted to cause mass hysteria, I wouldn't use a bomb, a machine gun or an airplane. I'd use a bike.
2008 DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL CONVENTION HEADLINE SPEAKERS
- Monday August 25th’s headline prime-time speaker will be Michelle Obama.
- Senator Hillary Clinton, who is a champion for working families and one of the most effective and empathetic voices in the country today, will be the headline prime-time speaker on Tuesday August 26th.
- The headline prime-time speaker on Wednesday August 27th will be Barack Obama’s Vice Presidential nominee.
- On Thursday, August 28th, the DNCC will throw open the doors of the Convention and move to INVESCO Field at Mile High so that more Americans can take part in the fourth night of the Convention as Barack Obama accepts the Democratic nomination.
Sunday, August 10, 2008
Friday, August 8, 2008
Obama recently spoke here in Ohio, and from Youngstown this is what he had to say about High-Speed Rail throughout Ohio and The Midwest:
Luckily help is on the way. As I wrote in the article, The Race America Doesn't Want to Win, Washington is finally working to bring back rail in the United States. Here in Ohio we will see part of the largest impact as the Three C's will finally be connected via high-speed rail. However, although the Passenger Rail Act passed with a veto-proof majority in the senate and congress, it still will not be a promising future if our next President does not support AMTRAK or any other form of public transportation.
“If you think about the Midwest, think about right here, what we’ve got is all kind of towns that we could connect,” Obama said. “All of these cities are, they basically take in the air about 45 minutes to an hour to fly.”
“But by the time you get to the airport,” Obama continued, “take off your shoes, get to the terminal, realize that your flight’s been delayed two hours, go pay $10 for a cup of coffee, and a sandwich for another $10, come back, you get on the plane, you’re sitting on the tarmac for another 25 minutes, you finally take off, you’re circling above the city for another half hour, when you land they can’t find your luggage, and then you get to where you’re going — by the time it’s all done it’s a five-hour trip! …So the time is right now for us to start thinking about high-speed rail as an alternative to air transportation, connecting all these cities and think about what a great project that would be in terms of rebuilding America.”
Thursday, August 7, 2008
Interesting, in nearly every metropolitan throughout the United States, families in the suburbs are always paying greater than 48% of their total incomes on just housing and transportation, while those who live in the city always are spending less, sometimes even less than 30% of their incomes. I guess this shouldn't be surprising, but at the same time it's interesting to note that the data is ubiquitous in almost of every major metropolitan area from coast-to-coast.
Basically, if you don't live in the city, you will be spending far more money to live away from it.
Well, don't throw in that towel quite yet, friend. Thanks to a new social experiment in Tel-Aviv, you just may be able to drive down your neighborhood's property value and thus make your rent as cheap as a bag of old potatoes. What is this great program I speak of? Well, it's quite simple and one which the whole community can get involved! Just order these cardboard Hookers and litter them all over your neighborhood! Scatter them at every corner that is visible! Make it known--whores own this town!
Tell your friends! Tell your family! Tell everyone you can--Hookers have taken over your neighborhood! Scare the people away and watch your rent plummet like it's the stock price of Enron. It will be mere hours before you live in a ghost town and your landlord is begging you to keep paying his salary. And once word is out that prostitutes infest your neck-of-the-woods, just head back out and tally up those cardboard whores! And then suddenly...voila! You yet again have a clean neighborhood, your rent has dropped and you scared away any potential new neighbors. Does it get any better than this?
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
ABC News reports that although Hillary Clinton fully supports Barack Obama, she is trying to find a "strategy" that would put her name on the DNC nomination ballot so that her supporters "feel their voices were heard".
The conundrum is that if her name appears on the ballot, the Obama-Clinton soap opera will return full force, with the media eating it up. Second, if her name appears on the ballot, the battle lines will be drawn and the unity that has taken form since June may begin to crumble.
However, if she doesn't have her name on the ballot, the 18 million people who voted for her will feel a backhanded slap to the face, with the cool sting of demanded party unity as a consolation prize.
As of now the story is the New York Senator will not submit her name to be on the ballot. But who knows? A lot can change in a New York Minute, especially when it's a difficult situation. My take? She might as well put her name on the ballot. It'd be better to appease her supporters, make them feel like their voices were heard, and give them the closure that was never justly offered to them.
I live on a one way street, and while walking along this narrow road, a crusty old van dashed by and ran a stop sign. The driver who was cut off, a rather large black woman with a red bow in her hair, didn't take well to this. I saw the expression on her face, and then watched in amazement as she proceeded to roll down her window to shout at the perpetrator. "YOU NO-GOOD #@^#%#@$!!! I OUTTA KILL YOU, YOU @*&^%$!!!"
Yeah. Something like that.
Suddenly the guilty driver, also a big black girl (sans the red bow), slammed on her breaks, rolled down her window and began shouting back at her.
That's when it got crazy.
Still sitting in the comfort of their own car, the two girls screamed every slanderous word you could imagine at each other. (I quickly learned that "fuck" can be used as any part of speech.) The two bitches were shouting so many obscenities that even I felt violated.
BUT THAT'S WHEN IT GOT REAL CRAZY.
The bitch sans the red bow who ran the stop sign put her van into reverse and began to spin the Dodge Caravan around IN THE MIDDLE OF A ONE WAY STREET. She was going back and fourth between drive and reverse every 4 seconds so she could pull her van RIGHT UP BESIDE THE BITCH SHE WAS SCREAMING AT. Nope, neither of them were going to get out of their cars. They were just fine verbally mutilating each other while the A/C blew on them and the radio lingered in the background.
I don't think I've ever been more proud to be an American.
Well, that was easy. BOMB THE SUCKER!
Lord Hall and Brown Hall are on the list of buildings to get axed, and I just received an e-mail saying they are headed for the guillotine right after summer quarter ends. The 100 year-old buildings are being canned to fit in exactly what makes a college campus even more beautiful--another parking lot!
(How many times have you graced the serene fields of knowledge and thought, "Why, this campus would be nothing without all of these fine parking lots! Nothing!"?)
Yup, those walls that have heard enough lectures they could probably teach one or two are being sliced up and shipped off so that even more students can continue in the subtle crime of driving from their suburban apartments to their inconveniently located college campus. (What? You mean we have to actually walk across The Oval? Why can't they provide us with Segways?)
On the one hand, I understand. Brown Hall is vacant. But at the same time, if you're going to pull the plug on two Historic buildings, give us something better than a parking lot and some green space!
Say goodbye while you can. They buildings will be shut down by September.
I just spoke with Kristin Poldemann, the Project Manager for these two buildings, and she confirmed that both are being deconstructed this month. She said that Brown Hall has been vacated and has already begun the process, with Lord Hall finishing by the end of the month (maybe early next month, she said). She also said that anywhere between 80-90% of the buildings will be recycled.
She also told me that in place of Lord Hall will not be a massive eye-sore of a parking lot like The Lantern reported back in February. Instead, it will be a small parking area with metered parking and parking for special needs students. She said they are looking to have about 16 spaces for ADA students and a few metered spaces for visitors.
The claim is a far different cry from what The Lantern seemed to suggest. She also said that a new building will eventually be built, though that would be many, many years away.
To respond to the backhanded reference, Paris Hilton has released her own campaign ad:
As pointed out by PZ Meyers, McCain is in serious trouble when Paris Hilton runs intellectual circles around him.
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
Although the magazine hasn't hit the stands yet, there is a preview available at the Harper's Bazaar website which states precisely why they chose Tyra to stand as the possible future First lady. "Tyra represents so many wonderful things--she is powerful, she is smart, she is fierce. What else would you want in a First Lady?" said Laura Brown, the Articles Special Project Director.
Tyra's best line? Direct Quote: "Michelle and Barack Obama, y'all just may be going to the White House, but I'm going to The White Castle! I'M STARVING!"
...hmph. Powerful, smart and fierce, huh?
Monday, August 4, 2008
"My neighbor did what?!" You'll be screaming something like that. Eventually.
A new site has been launched that allows you to check the criminal history of just about anyone--for free! Criminal Searches is in its Beta test run, but the interface is quite easy. You simply type in a name and a state, and if there is any dirt on them, it'll show right up.
Is that new boyfriend a pedophile? Is that friendly old man a thief? Is your priest a back alley drunk? Is your boss a wife beater? Hester Prynne, bring out that color in your A, you're gonna start looking like part of the crowd!
I really don't approve of this at all, but for the record, I searched three random people. One of them has a record.
The jaws of life had to be used to remove him from the vehicle, though he was conscious and coherent at the time of removal. The only word from the press is he is still in "serious condition".
Anyway, some small flames erupted in trash cans by the church, which the Church claims was "result of arson". (I would never advocate setting a church on fire, but I won't necessarily say WBC should act surprised). They've posted a video in response:
Hmph. Charming. They blame "Fags and fag sympathizers", though as of yet there is no evidence of arson.
True to form, as the firefighters fought to put out the flames at the Church, the members of the congregation brought out signs and began picketing them screaming, "You will all go to hell! Every last one of you!"
As noted by Good As You, "No stones left uncast!"
I don't know how I missed it, but did anyone else catch this story?
An evangelical preacher killed his wife several years ago and stuffed her body in a freezer after she caught him abusing their daughter, according to police and court documents.
He faces charges including murder, rape, sodomy, sexual abuse and incest.
Hopkins was denied bail Thursday when he appeared before Mobile County District Judge George Hardesty. The case is set for arraignment next week, Hardesty's clerk said.
The case began Monday, when the daughter, now 19, went to the Mobile Police Department's Child Advocacy Center and reported that she had been sexually abused by Hopkins since she was 11 years old, according to an affidavit filed in support of a search warrant of the preacher's home in Mobile.
Oh, wow, the love of Christ is so...compelling. As gruesome and heinous as the crime--or, well, crimes--what really boggles my mind is this:
Police allowed Hopkins to finish his sermon before arresting him, [Pastor Beverly] Jackson said. She said she asked police why they were arresting him and was told, "he murdered his wife."
She said Hopkins had told her his wife died four years ago while giving birth to their youngest son.
So a man sexually abuses his own children, murders his wife, stuffs her in a freezer for four years, threatens his children if they speak out, lies to his congregation, lies to the police, lies to everyone he can speak to...and yet the popo wouldn't arrest the son of a bitch?! What is going on here?! Are people so fearful of being irreverent that they'd allow one of the sickest fucks imaginable to continue to stand on the podium while preaching love and forgiveness, all the while never exhibiting even a morsel or a shred of it himself? Puh-lease. This man has ruined countless lives: his wife, the children, the congregation, and the church will never be the same. His actions were vile, his character is indisputably shameful and therefore his pulpit did not deserve a moment of veneration.
Aretha Hopkins didn't get an extra twenty minutes, so why did this guy? I cannot fit it through my mind why this murderer, rapist and child molester deserved respect just because he was preaching. Would the police allow me to finish waiting on my tables if I were a murderer? Nope. Would the police let me finish my morning run if I had stuffed a body in the freezer? Nope. Would the police permit me one extra cocktail if I had been lying to them for four years? Not for a second, and I wouldn't deserve these luxuries either.
I hate to pull the line, I know I sound like a housewife...but what about the children?
Your place finder results:You should probably leave Columbus, Ohiofinal score: 53 (below the average  score)You should definitely consider moving to Minneapolis, Minnesotafinal score: 96 (amongst the highest scores)You should probably move to New York, New Yorkfinal score: 84 (above the average  score)You should probably move to Chicago, Illinoisfinal score: 77 (above the average  score)
You should probably not move to Boston, Massachusettsfinal score: 70 (below the average  score)
Well that's nothing surprising. I adore Columbus and I think so highly of it. I am a Buckeye through and through. I'd recommend it to anyone who wants to raise a family, is looking for a new city to experience or a young professional recently out of college. This city is incredible. But at the same time, after four years, I'm ready for the next move. And hopefully it will be Minneapolis! :-)
The site itself is about author Richard Florida who wrote the book, Who's Your City?, and although I haven't read it I've already ordered my copy! (There is an excerpt here if you'd like to sample it). It seems to describe exactly my take on city life--where you choose to live is one of the most important decisions you can make. People have been saying that in the digital age where you live is irrelevant since you can easily have a conference call while sitting on the shores of Hawaii. I argue the contrary--that suburban sprawl is devastating to this country--and I do so relentlessly. Seems like Richard Florida and I agree on this.
(Thanks to joev for the link!)
Sunday, August 3, 2008
So here's the skinny--the drinks are banging. Although the drinks are priced similarly to the name of the bar (how kind of them to provide a warning!), Eleven is calling their brand of cocktails "molecular mixology" (which seems redundant and unnecessary, but whatever). As tacky as the brand name is, from what my friend says, I'll soon be getting over it once I see just how good the drinks are.
The cocktail menu includes some familiar favorites, but also some unique drinks such as the Dulce de Leche Martini, which is as thick as cheesecake and as filling as a ribeye, The Green Fairy, featuring recently-legal Absinthe, and The Deconstructed Martini, which is Hangar One Vodka with green olive caviar. Lastly the drink garnishes sound innovative and creative, and I'm dying to see what the hell "citrus foam" is like. It sounds ostentatious, vicious and delicious...everything I like in a drink!
The biggest thing that was confirmed was they will have a $4 happy hour which will feature many of the drinks from the menu, most Martinis using high-end vodkas like Belvedere and Greygoose. (Hopefully they won't pull a Smith and Wollensky on us!) This happy hour list has plenty of molecularly mixed cocktails, including the French 75, a rather subtle twist on the standard French cocktail. It's shaken with Tanqueray and lemon juice, finished with a Champaign float on top. Sounds good enough for me! (Especially @ $4!)
The wine list is simply awe-inspiring, so I'm told. They'll feature over 100 glass pours from all over the world--and all over the price range, too.
As far as the food goes, we'll just have to wait and see!
The restaurant itself is gorgeous and will be the place to be in The Short North. It boasts both a large bar terrace as well as multiple fireplaces to cozy up with. From the limited information I have, though, it won't take much to assume that Hyde Park will yet again wow us with a beautiful restaurant interior.
Eleven opens August 7th, and I'm sure all of us will be able to grab ourselves a first-hand review of the place. Hopefully this preview will at least caress your senses, appease your appetite and get you excited for the new comer to The Short North!
It's citrus foam, not caviar form, so scratch the pretension (but keep the ostentation!). It's also lemon juice, not lime juice, in the French 75.
Saturday, August 2, 2008
Today I was at The North Market, standing in line behind two big guys: 6'3, 300 pounds and scraggly hair 10 inches past the shoulder. They were wearing OSU Buckeyes shirts (naturally), they had tattoos up and down every arm, and they were wearing Cowboy hats. (Yes, cowboy hats.) In my mind I could hear my snarky little voice say, "These guys must be in for the fair".
The line was rather long, and I assumed the duo would take up all the cashier's time asking questions like, "Hair-o-cot Ferts? Is that how you say them things 'haricot verts' there?" But, to my bewilderment, it was nothing of the sort. One of the cowboys politely ordered the Portobello Salad, to which the cashier replied that they had sold out of that item. With such eager propriety, he then responded, "Oh, it's of no concern to me! Not at all! Instead, may I please have the Turchini Chicken? I'd also prefer onions over my shawarma, if that's alright. If it's not inconvenient, may I also have green tea with my meal please? And lastly, my good friend here would love to try your hummus--we hear it's just absolutely to die for!"
Wide-eyed. Astonished. Thunderstruck. I felt such a sense of humiliation, too. Here I am passing judgment on these two potbellied cowboys--you two must be lost and looking for the fair--and yet they turn out to be polite, knowledgeable and completely destructive towards stereotypes and conventions. I've never seen anything like it.
I ate on the outside patio, and when I saw them walk out to their car, they no doubt hopped into a large SUV, Built Ford Tough. I'm really not sure the lesson in this story, but I'm certainly walking away from it proud of my city for its ability to amalgamate the most bizarre unions in world. I'm also walking away learning not to be so quick to judge.
Can we just lay it out there--what the hell are they thinking? First off, this isn't even a good campaign ad! It insinuates that millions and millions of people are excited about the other candidate. I'm no marketer, but I would think that praising your opponent is not a strategy to consider, much less embrace. But with the past two campaign videos, the prior calling Obama a celebrity, it seems like the McCain campaign is actually helping Obama!
And did anyone catch the statement, "They will call him The One"? I'm a little curious which 'they' the McCain campaign is referencing, because it doesn't sound like they're referring to Americans. Perhaps the ad is suggesting that 'they' over in the Middle East will call him The One? Another stab at his Muslim name?
Geez, crazy loons.
Friday, August 1, 2008
I'm frightened. Not because it's anti-liberal or anti-Barack, I'm deeply fearful since this is the future of our nation. This is what people are bred to believe. This drivel is so painful that I'm worried for our tomorrow.
And now, the list...
10 Reasons Not to Like Obama
1. He wants to tax the rich 50% on their income tax.
2. He wants to give money to the poorer people who have done nothing to earn it while the rich deserve every penny they get.
3. He wants to pull troops out of Iraq and embarrass America.
4. "Hope" and "change" are the only words in his dictionary.
5. He fully supports abortion, which is the deliberate and heinous murder of a baby.
6. He is against the death penalty. It is a fact that it costs less to kill someone rather than keep them in jail.
7. He was recently voted the most liberal senator in the Senate, while Hillary was voted 16th and McCain in the fifties. He is so far left-wing that even Hillary doesn't sound too bad to true conservatives like me.
8. He has three years of real experience. He has never really had much experience, being that the last two years he has campaigned for the presidency. He has no leadership skill as well.
9. He cannot control his wife Michelle, who recently said that "This is the first time I have ever been proud of America." At least other candidates can keep their wives out of the spotlight.
10.He has no military experience. In order to run for the Presidency of the United States, you need to be involved with the military. The USMC is the reason that this country is, indeed, a country. Barack does not know what it is like to be in the field of war and therefore does not need the presidency to add to his blank resume.
Oh God...number one is just too funny! "...tax them 50% on their income tax!" That was the kicker for me. If Barack Obama were to tax them "50% on their income tax" he'd in effect being taxing them double, since he'd be taxing their tax! The sentence should have read: "He wants to tax the rich an income tax of 50%". Semantic, I know, but none the less it shows a little trail of lunacy.
Number two is just...weird. I mean, I'm a full capitalist and all, but it sounds like this guy hates the poor people or something!
Number three is making me twitch it's so funny! "Don't worry folks, never in the history of the world has America been embarrased! NEVER! NOT ONCE! That is.....unless that evil Muslim-atheist-blackman-homosexual-druglord BARACK OBAMA gets into office. Then, for the first time America will be embarrassed."
"...what's that? Are you saying America should have been embarrased when she went antithetical to the world's largest peace rally, begging us not to go to war with Iraq? Oh, and are you saying we should have been embarrassed when the United Nations begged us not to go to war too? And are you saying America should have been embarrassed when she re-elected the worst President in the history of the nation?"
Number four doesn't even really make sense. Who cares if he uses those words a lot--they're his campaign slogans for Christ sake!
When I read number five I began giggling...murder of baby? Who is this nutcase? I'm not debating when life begins, I'm just saying it's almost as funny as the creepy baby cake I posted previously! This dude is WEIRD.
Number six just isn't true. And it's kind of cute, isn't it? "Save the fetuses, their life is precious and cannot be destroyed. BUT KILL THE CRIMINALS! They aren't human." What nefarious lunatic would say that human life comes down to cost? I myself am entirely lacking of a heart--wait, not true, I have a heart: it's black, cold and only beats three times a year--but even in this case I would never say, "Kill em' all so we can save the money to go kill more people in Iraq. BUT SAVE THE BABIES!!!" When I found out this list wasn't a joke, this number right here was the one that riled me up.
Seven is just so awkward since they don't even mention who voted them in those positions. I mean, shouldn't they mention a source? Or where they heard it from? Or who they heard may or may not have written about it? I mean, I may as well say "John McCain was voted the most conservative Republican" and leave it at that! Dude, if you're reading this, listen: You can't just make a claim and say "they" said it. You have to say who "they" are, you blind baffoon!
Eight is what really made me think this was a joke. If he has "no leadership skill"...how did he get 200,000 people in Berlin to come see him? Was it just a coincidence? "Black man happens to get on large stage and 200,000 pedestrians happened to stop and listen." No, you dimwitted fool! He is where he is today because he has leadership skill. (And not "leadership skills". No no no, we can't get all caught up with that "grammar" horse shit).
Nine was the one. After reading this one, I was absolutely and utterly convinced that this list was satire. To begin, the quote is egregiously wrong.
"This is the first time I have ever been proud of America." -Their quote
"For the first time in my adult lifetime, I am really proud of my country." -Actual quote
Now, you may say I'm being nitpicky. "Same difference, man!" No, not really. They omit the "..in my adult life" and the adverb "really". Those are key. Why? Because their quote changes it to "I've never been proud of Amurikkka!" when in reality, she is saying, "Look, things haven't been very good in the past few years...but, finally, America is coming back." Ladies and gentlemen, that is a huge difference. As a sidenote, in all honesty, in my adult life I have yet to be proud of my country. I've only been an adult for 5 years, and they've been shitty under this current administration. We've seen America plummet from the country that challenged the world to the joke-of-a-nation that won't even bother caring for its own citizens. And I'm supposed to be proud of that? Fuck blind obediance. I'll never step in line, chant some dilapidated and over-used words while staring at a flag, all in some collective mean of "country pride". No. I love my country, and I'll be proud of her when she gets back on her feet and realizes what it really means to be the land of the free.
Oh, and if you're talking about keeping candidates out the spotlight, can we talk pill-popping Cindy McCain? Yeah, I said it.
Ok, back to the list. The list ends with such lunacy that I was *literally* laughing out loud. "The USMC is the reason that this country is, indeed, a country." Folks, there you have it. Our country is not about our hard working men and women. It is not about the inventions we create, the buildings we erect, the books we write nor the movies we film. Our country has nothing to do with global finance, international fashion nor our feats in engineering and technology. We exist simply to flex our biceps and make small nations whimper in fear. We exist only to take a breathe and leave the rest of the world gasping to watch our next move. The USMC is the only reason we are even a country, so pick up your goddamn guns and start shooting up a high school or a church. Why, those are the only real patriots in this country! They know the true meaning of what is it to be an Amurikan. Apparently, the only true Americans are those who rich old white men who make over 7 digits a year, have a rifle collection, savor every penny they can scrounge up and keep their wives locked silenced in closet. The only real Americans are those who have no heart and would sooner kill off a deviant than bother having to fix them. The only true Americans are those who straighten up and fly right by putting on bricks for sunglasses and saying, "Nope! Nothing is wrong with America. She's never been embarrassed, no one has ever hated her, the economy has never been better and George Dubya Bush is the best President that ever existed!!! God Bless America (but not the other countries!)!"
I wonder what's it like to be one of those, oh, 14 people in this country. The other 299,999,986 need to get the hell outta this country, them hatin' lie-barals!!! Them ain't AMURIKANS!!!