Friday, September 29, 2006

Way Too Funny

Sometime I forget how funny the Dailey Show really is. When I saw this, it hit home. While I served my country in the US, there were several of my friends whe were asked to leave the military because the chose to love and care for someone of the same sex. The following segment from the Dailey Show exeplifies the ignorance of the military policy.

Scary But Good

In a small high school in a rural Northern Kentucky town, two dozen or so high school students and middle school met in the early morning hours, before school started to sing Christian songs around the school’s flag pole. Why you may ask? This was an even planned to commemorate "See You at the Pole", an annual, global event that happens at public school flag poles on the fourth Wednesday of September. During this ‘celebration’ the students proceeded to ask God to send “moral and spiritual awakening” to their small campus and to other high school campuses around the county.

With the uproar that has been given to religion at public school (ohh, did I mention that it was a public school that this prayer service was conducted at?), I am surprised that there was not more of an outcry of dis approval and anger.

It funny for me to say, but I say good for them. Though I think that its is a bit weird to depart your yellow school morning and to see a group of students chanting outside of your school doors, circling a flagpole, since we live in a country where free speech is king, I say go for it. The same thing that lets them celebrate this way is the same thing that keeps me writing this blog.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Another One For The Bengals

This title may be a bit misleading title.

Yes it is true that the Bengals reclaimed their dignity in a major way with the comback victory against the Pittsburgh Steelers. We all here in Cincinnati remember Cincinnati's final game of last years season when a player form the Steelers 'accidental' took Palmer out on one of their defensive plays. Many thought it was the single act that kept Cincinnati from going on to win the AFC championship and the SuperBowl.

But one would never know.

The title of this blog could also remark about yet another black spot on the pride of Bengals and their fans with the arrest of Odell Thurman for driving under the influence after the aforementioned Bengals win. Thurman, who is already suspended for infractions against the National Football League's Substance Abuse policy, was stopped on Kellogg Ave in the East End at a sobriety check point , after he a a few other team mates celebrated their comback win at the popular night club, Annie's. It did not help that Chris Henry, one of the shinnig stars of last Sunday's victory, was also in the car and preceeded to vomit during the altercation with the police.

Today, Marvin Lewis, Head Coach of the Cincinnati Bengals said that Thurman was done for the 2006 football season. I guess that was the correct thing to do. We do not want to give the impression that the Bengals are above the law or anything like that.

I think that it is a shame that Thurman got caught by the police on this matter. I think that if it was kept internally, Thurman would have had a shot in playing sometime this year. Thurman is a large guy and it seems to me that the .17 that he blew in the breath-alizer did not adequately show how inebriated he was. Buy of course I am no scientist or doctor so I could be totally off base here. Lewis hit it on the head when the only thing that he said about Henry is that it was 'bad timing'. I is not against any rules for Henry to drink. Thank God he was not driving.

But of course that's just my thoughts

Monday, September 25, 2006

What Writing Block?

Have you ever wanted to read a story that you wished exemplified your life, or an experience that you wanted to experience? I would assume that you have and even if you haven't, there are many who read and purchase novels just for this very reason. This is the reason why I am in the process of writing the novel entitled Ten to One. I have looked longingly for a novel where the stories centered on someone that I could completly relate. Coming to terms with the fact that those novels are far and few between, I decided to create the novel myself.

Ten to One follows the life of Jacob Taylor, a new college graduate living in Cincinnati, OH. Shortly after graduation from the University of Cincinnati, Jacob lands an unwanted job at the Midnite Starr, a tabloid based in Cincinnati. While on assignment with his cigar smoking, quick lipped and tight assed partner, Franky Simpson, who spends more time trying to put Jacob down rather than help him become acquainted with his new job, stumbles on a murder plot that has been more than twenty years in the making. The novel takes you through the process of trying to find the murderer. His long time friend, and fag hag, Gi-Gi helps Jacob with his personal life, especially with the fact of Jacob's love life. The story also chronicles Jacob's quest in trying to come 'out' to his ultra-conservative relatives in the midst of a family tragedy.

Can't wait until I am finished with it!

Friday, September 22, 2006

A Comeback To OTR

Over-the-Rhine (OTR) may seem an odd name for a neighbor's but to us downtown dwellers it is common place. To non-downtown dwellers, OTR may bring a connotation of filth, poverty, crime and unsafe feeling. To us who live here know that the cramp living quarters and close proximity to jobs and transit hubs brings some who are poor which draws criminals, but we also know that OTR is more than that and definitely has more to offer.

The University of Cincinnati launched a major revitalization project in OTR in 2002 and yesterday, they invited the community and its organizations to Memorial Hall at 1229 Elm to give a presentation of how far they have come. The former OTR Community Council president spoke after a few invigorating and thought provoking prose by one of InkTank;s writers. Brian Tiffany, president of the OTR Chamber of Commerce then gave a laundry list of their efforts in trying to stimulate economic growth in the area.

After UC gave their presentation updating their project in OTR, Milton R. Dohoney, Jr., gave a rousing speech chronicleing his experience in Lexington and Louisville and his vision for this area. He was candidly honest in saying that the National Underground Freedom Center may not have been the best idea for this area, not to say it was a bad idea, just not the BEST idea. He also claimed that we, as a city, can be abit more cleaner.

I was surprised that their were not any bo's or hisses that emanated from the crowd at his surprisingly honest approach. I think that it may be he gave more enlightenment than gloom. His speech was capped off with a resounding cry for investment in our neighborhood.

Monday, September 18, 2006

The 'Final Friday' Name Is Mine

The ‘Final Friday’ (FF) event that has been taking place in the Pendleton neighborhood has been a staple of downtown living for the past two decades and I have attended on and off for the last 10 years. Over the years, this monthly exhibition of artesian expression has spread to other parts of downtown and Over-the-Rhine (OTR) areas to include the downtown business districts and Main Street. This event occurs (as you may know from the name) on the last Friday of every month, from 8pm to 10pm, where art galleries and shops in the downtown keep their doors open later than normal, seducing patrons with free wine, appetizers with jovial conversation.

I fell in love with this event my first year of college when the parent’s of a high-school friend opened an art studio in this area and invited me to my first FF event.

Recently, I was driving through the neighborhood of Oakley and noticed a banner hanging across its main thoroughfare which boasted ‘Oakley’s Final Friday’.

I could not believe it. The swanky, slightly more affluent northern neighbor was trying to steal a downtown tradition that had been very successful over the years.

I was glad to see that residents of the downtown area were not taking this lying down. This was apparent after reading “Feuding Over Friday’s" in last Friday’s Cincinnati Enquirer. Brian Tiffany, president of the Over—the-Rhine Chamber of Commerce stated, "We just really felt that we had some incredible momentum going," he said. "For this to be just scooped up and taken away at what we consider a critical time - I mean, can't you pick another day? Can't you pick 'Final Thursday?' or 'Last Saturday?'”

Oakley could have been more original with its event’s name and was un provoked in its blatant attempt to try and draw crowds form downtown’s FF event. OTR chamber will not be hard pressed to legally get Oakley to change the name. The Enquirer stated that the Final Friday name was trademarked by Thirteen Ten Pendleton Corp., a subsidiary of the Verdin Bell Co. Company president Jim Verdin registered it in 2004 to describe the "arranging and conducting exhibitions of art and artists." which is still the case for downtown’s FF and has also morphed to include commerce and other commercial venues.

Bottom line is that if Oakley had created an innovative and ORIGINAL slogan to promote the events occurring on the last Friday of the month in their neighborhood, myself, and a considerable number of other downtown residents, would have had a little more respect for their efforts. If Oakley decides to continue this outlandish display of rivalry, bridges may be burned and the efforts of both downtown and Oakley may be at risk.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

I Remember Where I Was

We have all been bombarded with remberances of terrible day when several sub human beings thought that they would smart enough to destroy the infastructure of our nation.

Of course I am talking about the the events that accord on 9/11/01.

I had been off active duty from the US Army for seven months and had almost adjusted to being a civilian again. I was a full time student attending the University of Cincinnati's Economics program and an active member on Pi Kappa Alpha.

Though mostly adjusted to not wearing BDU's every day from dusk till dawn, the military life had not completely left my routine. I was enrolled in R.O.T.C. classes at UC and was in the Ohio National Guard.

the day that will be permantly engraved in my mind's eye, I was working as a student employee in UC's Veterans Affairs office. A co-worker came in just after 9am and said to me the following, "A plane just flew into the World Trade Center."

No bells or whistles went off in my had at that time. I had immediately shrugged him off and thought him to be kidding. I retorted mockingly with "How can that be?" I rolled my eyes and sucked my teeth and continued with, "There is not a run-way in the middle of New York."

After a brief explanation, all in the office were immediately glued to the big screen television on the first floor of One Edwards Place.