29 January 2009

Local Graffiti

Best Fried Chicken & Coffee Cake


I found out about this great fried chicken via my buddy Jack. He kept talking about how he went to the Hitchin' Post and how they make fried chicken the REAL way, by frying it in lard, and how the health police should stop complaining about the fat and just eat somewhere else and let the rest of us enjoy it and work off the calories by working on our farms which brings up another point which is that the problem isn't that we eat bad food but that we are too sedentary.

(That's the short version)

So one day I went driving along Kellog Ave looking for The Hitchin' Post, hoping that there would be only one place with that name. After not finding it, I turned around and found it.

Yes, their fried chicken is a true winner: tender and moist on the inside, crispy and salty on the outside. I've gone back three times.

If you see the Four Season's Marina, you've gone a little too far. You probably missed it because you were looking at the piles of cars in the junkyard across the street.

Sign Museum already has dibs


A while back I unexpectedly found myself at a local uber-bakery. I was hungry and had some time to kill so I got a piece of coffee cake and a cup of coffee to go with it.

I am confident that this will be the biggest and most delicious coffee cake you have tried:

Eat me at the Bonbonerie

22 January 2009

Australian Open

I have not watched any Australian Open matches yet. Maybe I'll catch up this weekend.

I'll be keeping a close watch on Andy Murray this year. The way he beat Nadal at the last U.S. Open was very impressive. If I were coaching a young player I would make him/her watch that match over and over. It was a textbook example of executing a game plan. Murray may look like a dorky teenager but he's one of the best thinkers out there.

Nadal and Murray are in the same side of the draw and could meet once again in the semis. That could be pretty interesting.

"This is probably the best I've felt coming into a Grand Slam," Murray was quoted in CBSsports.com. He was runner-up in the last Grand Slam so if he feels better this time, he could definitely be in position to contend.

Venus Williams already lost. Serena is still in it. Speaking of Serena, here is one artist's funny-'cause-it's-true rendering of her:

sans bling

If Federer wins, he will tie Pete's record of 14 Slams. It took Pete 14 years to do that, starting with his first U.S. Open title at age 19 and his last U.S. Open (his fifth) at the age of 31. By contrast, Federer has taken 10 years to amass his 13 Slams by age 27. If it doesn't seem that long it's because Federer turned pro in 1998 but didn't win a Slam until 2003. And we all know the story since then.

19 January 2009

End of an Error

(Detail from a Todd James painting)

Good-bye and good riddance to George W. Bush, the man who educed the ugly truth that America's churches and boardrooms often harbor an insidious and bizarre headspace, one where reality is twisted, contorted and misinterpreted so that it can conform to an implacable a priori ignorance rather than the other way around, in which evolved minds bend and stretch in an attempt to understand bizarre and horrific events in the external world.

I suppose in a sense it is fitting that, in the age of virtual reality, we got an administration that defined it. I look forward to seeing that visor come off tomorrow.

Most Presidents leave office and write their memoirs. It's hard to imagine a man who can barely read, write or speak put together a memoir but in the end nobody really cares what Bush does as long as he has no legal authority while he does it. But in the spirit of healing, here are some suggestions on what to title his memoirs:

X-Files in Courage
All I Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten
Heckuva Job: The Presidency of George W. Bush
Jesus Christ Superstar
Semper Fi

Good luck, Barack Obama. You will need it more than anyone realizes. For one thing, you will have to deal with black Americans. Believe me, they will be a thorn in your side for the duration of your Presidency. More on this later. For now let's focus on the positive: George W. Bush is outta here.

Like a Phoenix rising out of the graffiti

17 January 2009

Smart Car, Dumb Driver -- Part Deux

Unbelievable. I saw her again, almost a month after the first time.

Heading north, away from the inauguration

15 January 2009

Anatomy of a Bad Decision

So I was in California for a wedding last weekend. My sister and her fiancee almost canceled their trip because he was very sick with the flu. But in the end they went.

I met my sister in the hotel lobby as she was waiting for the fiancee. I advised that he should NOT attend since he would just spread the flu.

Yes, says the sister, but he "came all this way" and wants to attend.

I understand, and that is nice, but not if it means other people will get sick and pay the price. Unfortunately I got nowhere with this line of reason. The sister has always had a problem comprehending how her actions affect others. She understands if it is explained to her but seldom otherwise. There is probably a psychological term for it.

Long story short, I now have the flu. And so does probably everyone else who sat at our table.

That, my friends, is a textbook example of a bad decision.

And now here is an interesting doorway:

13 January 2009

I Love the Smell of Palm Trees in the Morning

I woke up at 4:30 a.m. on Saturday to drive to the Dayton airport. If you recall, there was freezing rain that day. As a result, the plane was delayed on the tarmac (after boarding, of course). We were stuck on the tarmac for about 30 minutes while the de-icing trucks treated planes and runways. Then the de-icing truck broke down and had to be fixed. That was about 45 minutes more.

Here is a shot of the icy airplane window and the [now fixed] de-icing truck:

Something green on the wing

Finally the plane took off. Of course, our connecting flight in Minneapolis took off before we even left the ground in Dayton. So we had to find a new connection to our ultimate destination, San Jose.

The next connection was SIX hours later. Luckily we got one to a nearby airport, San Francisco, that was just 90 minutes later. So we walked through the Minneapolis airport which was apparently built by a mall developer. I have never seen so many shops & restaurants in an airport. I saw this store for the first time:

We sell, you buy

Fifteen hours after waking up to freezing rain, we landed in 65 degree weather in San Francisco. The SFO airport is HUGE. Here is the tram we took to the rental car site:

What are those things on the trees... leaves?

Then we got in our rented PT Cruiser and drove to San Ramon. Actually, before we did that I had to take the tram back to baggage claim and return Mr. Khan's bag which I inadvertently picked up because it looked exactly the same as mine. Luckily, he wasn't there to ask me why I picked up a bag that had his name on it in two places.

Anyway, we got on the road and crossed this very long bridge across the bay.

It's 3 times longer than what you see here

So eventually we made it and had a great time. At the hotel I saw a guy playing tennis outside... IN JANUARY.

The wedding was a blast and had some touching moments as well. I've been to a lot of weddings but I don't think I'll ever hear a toast better than the one given by the groom's brother. It was the toast of all toasts.

My family is crazy but they're a lot of fun. We live all over the country and I wish we could get together more often. We always say it but it never happens. I'm going to do something about that.

09 January 2009

I Got Nothin'

Nothing to post this week. I had a rant about Roland Burris and Bobby Rush but I decided not to post it. But I will say this: I thought of that silly painting where bulldogs are sitting at a card table playing poker. In my mind I replaced the bulldogs with Roland, Bobby, Al and Jesse and added the caption "Who will play the race card next?"

This weekend I will be in San Francisco for a wedding. I hope the freezing rain back in Cincy isn't too bad but at least it might keep this dude and his cargo off the road:

03 January 2009

Jesus' Best Friend

Just before noon I went to Shadeau Breads hoping to find something sweet. The early birds cleaned the shelf so I struck out. But I did see a cute little girl, probably about 18 months old, bundled up in her pink coat and hood. She looked like a little pink marshmallow with big, blue eyes and chubby cheeks. Maybe she was hiding my chocolate croissant in those cheeks.

En route to Shadeau I passed Washington Park and saw a pizza van and a line of people. I think this was the weekly chow line set up by that suburban church (can't remember the name) that makes weekly jaunts from blessed suburbia into cursed Sodom. That's what Jesus would do, right?

The bumper sticker would indicate so:

It reads "Jesus is my Best Friend."

And here she is!

And yes, that is a no-parking zone.