Monday, December 31, 2007

End Of Year Post Countdown

As most like to do at the ending of of another year (beside plan resolutions) is to look back on the the year that is about to end.

I thought I would count down the top 9 posts that I have had the most fun writing over the past year. Of course there were more than 9 posts that I enjoyed writing, but I though 9 was a nice odd number to choose from.

and away they go...

9-Truck Crashes Into Wall

8-Another Great Opening Day Pitch

7-What was BET Thinking?

6-Quills Up For Qualls

5-Mother of a Teenage Boy Accused of Having Sex With Her Son's Classmate

4-Jazz In Covington

3-Are Black Youth Charged As Adults More Often Than White Youth?

2-4th Year of the War....and what have we accomplished?

1-Pride Is Alive In The Nati!


Thursday, December 27, 2007

Another Christmas Come And Gone

This year was the very first time that I hosted our family's Christmas party...

I made my famed garlic cheese mashed potatoes and tried my hand at my grandmother's sage and onion stuffing. A number of other family members chipped in by bringing a dish or two.

Here are some pics from that happy occasion.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Happy Holiday's From The NAMjA

I hope that you and yours are spending a very Happy Holiday. Here are some not so normal views of Downtown Cincinnati that I snapped while I was walking home for the gym. 20 cool points goes to the person who can identify them...

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Business Venture For 2008

As most of you know, I have been playing with the idea of running my own business. I began BookMark Enterprises a few years ago not really knowing what type of service I was going to provide.

Last year, I started developing a business model to open a resume/cover letter writing service and the end product has evolved into ION Consultants.

In addition to ION, I have been working on another project. The result is 15 West Publishing which will launch Jan 2008. I am in the process of finishing the website and it will launch in January as well.

The following is the press release I fashioned to announce BookMark Enterprises' latest venture.

Publishing Group Becomes Bookmark's New Page In 2008
Saturday, December 15, 2007,

Bookmark Enterprises, ION Consultants' parent company is announcing its plans to try its hand in books.

15 West Publishing is scheduled to launch the beginning of 2008. In addition to publishing fiction and non-fiction titles, 15 West will provide proofreading and editing services, replacing those offered by ION Consultants.

With several titles already "ear marked" for
publication, 15 West will remain in the realm of BookMark's mission and
strive to bring quality publishing services to both the new and experienced

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Saturday Night Fever

Another snowfall hit the city yesterday morning. I love Cincinnati to death, but the city holds some o the worst drivers in the nation. I am so glad that this winter storm hit on a weekend.

When I woke up yesterday morning and saw the ground all covered with snow, my first impulse was to run out and start playing in it. Then I realized that I had no snoot boots not did I have a winter coat suitable for "playing" in the snow.

I am such a grown up.

Instead, I took these pics on my walk to breakfast at Coffee Emporium.

Later on in the afternoon, I met my college fraternity brothers at Universal Grille for a holiday get together. Yes, the NAMjA was in a fraternity. Long live Delta Lambda Phi!

Afterwards, I attended a Davis Sadaris play entitled "The Santaland Diaries". The play was put on by The New Edgecliff Threatre in Columbia Tusculum.

I have never read anything by David Sadaris. In fact, the only thing I know about him was that he has a sister named Amy who was in a little show called Strangers with Candy, and a movie of the same name. Needless to say, I really did not know what I was getting into.

I loved the show!

Russell Ihrig played David in the Santaland Diaries and Joyce Dunbar in the second play called Season's Greetings. Both plays was a 1 man show and Russell did a great job holding every one's attention throughout the entire production.

Its a great chance to support local talent. The show runs through Dec 22 so get out and see it.

Dinner at Bella Luna capped off the night. I suggest trying the spaghetti alla Norma when you go!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

NADA....Worth the trip

I could find NADA wrong with David Falk's new restaurant that took over Bella's space next to the Aronoff.

Last night, after a whirl wind shopping spree for Pendleton's annual Children's Holiday Party, I decided to wind down for the evening at one of downtown Cincinnati's newest eateries, NADA.

Stepping through the doors, I was immediately transported from the cold rainy streets of Cincinnati into a hip, metropolitan oasis, more commonly found in downtown Chicago or uptown Manhattan rather than on the backs of the Ohio.

With no wait, and feeling a bit under dressed for the establishment, I was whisked away to the main dinning area, which appeal is added to by its elevation from the rest of the down stairs space. Which, incidentally, is broken up nicely by a railed staircase that swirls from the second floor, cascading down to the first.

After an appetizer of chips, salsa and guacamole, and half way completing my meal of chicken tacos, I noticed that the all of the wait-staff were sporting tops that I saw being sold at Park & Vine. But the shirts that I saw expressed love for "the nati" and the shirts that I saw last night expressed its love for "the nada".


Nada, being a Mexican restaurant, the real test of its longevity can only be found in the quality of its margarita...

I think this place is going to do just fine....

Monday, December 10, 2007

Backward Glance

This weekend was a dismal one.

After the snow we experienced last week, the weather was not cold enough to turn the torrential down pour that we experienced all weekend into snow.

I tried to make the most of it though.

Saturday, I taught my first Microsoft Excel class since I added this service to my business. It went well. i used to teach an entire host of Microsoft classes to the general public at a local library here in town, but it has been years since I have conducted 1-on-1 training, which is much easier.

later on that night, I attended a dinner party in Northside, where some of the other attendees were selling some of their wares. From eclectic jewelery to an assorted group of hand made purses and hats and artwork.

I had forgotten that this dinner party was doubling as a "selling" party and neglected to bring cash with me.

Check out one of the artist's who was selling her wares at this party. She is one of the most talented jewelery makers here in town and has been a featured artist at the Hyde Park Art Show and will be selling some items on Dec 15th at the Contemporary Arts Center.

Sunday was a a very low key day. I spent most of my day doing research at two local libraries. I was searching for pictures of my grandmother's elementary and high schools that she attended, Lincoln Grant and South Street schools, historically African American schools in Newport and Covington KY. I was only able to find a few shots of Lincoln Grant so I will have to travel across the river again to take a few pictures of South Street school.

While I was at the Covington Branch of the Kenton County Public Library, I stopped to take a few shots of the their annual train display.

That was my weekend in a was yours?

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Ol' Man Winter Strikes

Today was the first accumulating snow fall of the winter season, and of course, the weather forecaster made it into a larger deal than it turned out to be.

The way that they were taking last night, i was hunkering down and preparing to hibernate in my apartment for the next several days.

This morning, as it turned out, there was minimal traffic problems. Most of the the trouble came from drivers being extra cautious.

I guess that s a good thing, but I was 15mins late getting to work this morning.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Korean Night Went Off Without A Hitch

Well, Saturday night was big hit!

As I mentioned in my last post, Saturday night I had a bunch of friends over to have Korean food. It was the second of our annual themed dinners, this one being the theme of Korea.

The night started off around 7pm.

The dish that I was supposed to make was bibimbap, which literally means "mixed rice dish". Basically its meat and vegetables, sauteed with sesame seed oil and served in a hot stone bowl with one egg cracked on topped just before it is served.

The funny thing is, I did not get to serve it because there was so much food that had already been served. So I will be having bibimbap for dinner for the next couple of days.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Korean Night Frenzy

Tomorrow will be the second monthly themed dinner party that my group of friends through. Each month, whoever is picked to host that month's dinner also gets to choose the type of cuisine.

Last month, I was chosen to host this month's dinner and, of course, I choose Korean.

Also, each guest is supposed to bring a portion of the meal. I am slated to prepare Bibbimbap.

I'll let you know how it goes.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Procter and Gamble....You Have Come A Long Way ...Baby!

It was back in 1837 that the international giant Procter & Gamble began here in Cincinnati. More specifically, it was when candle maker William Procter and soap maker James Gamble married the Norris sisters (Olivia and Elizabeth) and, at the behest of their mutual father-in-law, merged their separate fledgling businesses to create what many around the world now know as P&G.

If the the two entrepreneurs only could have imagined that one day their company, who began to see the fruits of its labor when the company secured a lucrative contract with the US military during the Civil War, would open centers all across the world. Including its newest one in Geneva.

They sure have come a long!

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Downtown Cincinnati "Lights Up The Square"

I am so glad that I took off work yesterday.

I made a valiant effort to work the day after Thanksgiving, but with family and friends coming into town, it got a bit too over whelming, so Wednesday afternoon I informed my supervisor that I would be taking Friday off.

I spent the Friday with family and found some great bargains at some of the stores that we hit up. The best one being the 4 GB flash drive that I found at Staples. Usually this mega memory stick runs for a cool $80, but Friday morning I was able to pick it up for only $20!

Can't beat that.

In the evening, I took in the Light Up The Square Celebration that officially rings in the Holiday season here in the Queen City. The following are a few pics for the evening.

It was great to see Fountain Square so packed with people, but the proceeding of events could have been changed up a bit.
It took abit longer than expected for Santa to arrive and when he did, the crowd was so ready to leave that they began to chant "Light-The-Tree!"
Once the tree was lit, the crowd started to immediately head out. I guess they forgot that there was a fire works display scheduled immediately following the tree lighting.
After the events, I was able to stick my head into Nada, which will be opening next week. It looks amazing! I can't wait to partake. I then grabbed a cocktail and a light dinner at Sung, the new Korean place downtown. I have to say, its good but Riverside still had my vote.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Global Warming...Now Do You Believe Us

Talk about Global Warming. Today temperature here in Cincinnati is supposed to reach 70 degrees. Its two days before Thanksgiving and I woke up this morning contemplating if I should wear a light jacket to work or no jacket at all.

There have been many credible scientist who have tried to disqualify the fact that human consumption is leading to the rise in temperatures world wide, some stating that spikes in temperatures are nothing new. I agree, there definitely is a pattern of warming than cooling over the millions of years that earth has been in existence, but tell me when was the last time it hit 70 degrees here in the Queen City days before Turkey Day?

Since this green thing is taking hold around the county, I thought I would give a little insight as to what I am trying to do (although small) to decrease my footprint in the world.

Having a car is sooo suburban...
I live downtown so there is not too many spaces to park. I have decided to forgo having a car and take public transportation to and from work. I don't suggest this to those who already have a 40 min + commute to and from work, but for those downtowner who live and work in the city should look into getting rid of the gas guzzler. If not completely doing away with it, just drive it on the weekends.

Paper is as paper does...
When at restaurants or other public places, I opt to letting my hands air dry instead of using one or two pieces of those paper towels after I wash my hands. There is nothing more wasteful than using something for less than a second or two and having the remnants last considerably longer.

and last but not least,


Those are just a few things that I have opted for....look for more to come.

Anyone else have any ideas?

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Well, This NAMjA Is Back In "Da Nati"

I am back from my whirl wind trip to Philadelphia.

Some may be asking of all the places to visit for the weekend, why would I choose Philly?

Well, despite the vibrant night life, cultural history and fabulous shopping, I was there for a job interview.

So this Cincinnati NAMjA may become Philadelphia NAMjA

I have to say, I did enjoy the four days that I spent in the city. Though I stayed at a hotel near the airport (not my first choice), via public transportation I was only a few short minutes from downtown. The city's layout was very easy to follow, causing me only to get lost once, which is not bad.

Unfortunately, I was not able to see historical Philadelphia. On the day that I planned to sight see that part, it rained.

Well, if I get the position, I will have all the time in the world to see it.

Monday, November 12, 2007

This Goes Out To Those Who Serve(d)

I am still in Philly and got to see what morning commuting is like here in this town. Honestly, I did not think it was that bad. Of course, this is a National Holiday.

I would like to thank the men and women how stood, and still continue to stand, in harms way to protect our right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.


Sunday, November 11, 2007

Truck Crashes Into Wall

I have been in Philadelphia for the past few days. I left early Saturday minoring to drive to Columbus, OH only to fly back through Cincinnati, heading to Philly.

Anyway....I digress

I was sitting in my hotel room waiting for the Bengals game when I saw this story on CNN's Headline news.

I tell you, I go out of town for one weekend and hell breaks loose.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

The Morning After

Well, another election day has come and gone. A bit smoother than I had expected. Don't expect next year's election day to be as calm.

I have decided to give my commentary (albeit a bit bias) about some of the ramifications of the election results.

Verdict #1: Cincinnati City Council (I guess no change is good)
In yesterday's election, all 9 incumbent city council members were re-elected. This seemed to be a good idea. All incumbent council members have had a great record on working together and tyring to get things accomplished (such as cutting down on crime and moving along The Banks Project).

Verdict #2: Issue 27 (The Jail Tax gets stuffed, for the second time)
For the second consecutive election year, the tax that would allow for a larger, better equipped rehabilitation facility that would replace several of the outdated facilities here in Hamilton county was defeated. Not unlike last year, approval seemed to be based on racial lines, meaning, the only districts where the tax was approved were predominately white.

It seems to me to be a bunch of lip service on the part of constituents here in Greater Cincinnati. There is an over whelming support of more police patrols in order to cut down on crime, but when it comes time for the citizens to actually pay for it, everyone runs and hides. Case, in point, the non-approval of The Jail Tax.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Crossing The River...Part 2

After the Kid's Bowl event, I took in some sights of the old neighborhood. On the corner of Madison and 7th you can find a series of mosaic benches like the one pictured here.

Crossing The River

Today I striated the Ohio River and spent an afternoon in Covington, Ky, the city that I grew up. Thought it is just across the river, I seldom get a chance to make it back over here.

At Baker Hunt, located in Covington, the Clay Alliance held an event benefiting children where each of their members are asked to make 10 clay bowls. We pay $25 and we get one of the bowls and a bowl of soup. During the day, you can watch several people throwing clay.

It was a wonderful afternoon for this event. Here is a picture of the second clay thrower that I snapped on my way out.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Random Shots of Downtown Cincinnati

On my way yo the Gym At Carew this morning, I thought I would take a few shots of the city.

Here is a pic of the American Building on the corner of Central and Walnut.

Just across the street is this beautiful building, The Emory building. The basement is where you can find my favorite coffee shop, Coffee Emporium.

Here is a pic of the new restaurant, Cadillac Ranch. I was not too impressed with the food when I went, but the facade is great for the city. You can find this view from the corner of Walnut and 6th. The last time I walked by here, Nick Lachey was enjoying a drink on the patio.
The next few pics are of Fountain Square between Main and Walnut on 5th. You can see that preparations are underway for the ice skating rink.

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