Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 425

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Welcome to the last edition of OITS. To celebrate the occasion, there is a little more this time.

Although I’ve been proclaiming the end is coming for months, the fact that it is actually approaching is a weird sensation. I spent so much time cleaning out the blog closet, I thought the closet was more like a bottomless pit.

With 425 posts, Opinions in the Shorts is (by far) my longest running series. It’s been fun to do.

With this series having different sections, it has been interesting to notice reader preferences. But I get the biggest thrill when someone reads one of the Interesting Reads and then comments about it. 😀

Over the years, I’ve tried to showcase Cincinnati and the surrounding area. Here’s an article about 10 lesser known historical sites in the area. Some may surprise you.

This is from five year ago, but just saw it for the first time.

 

Remember Fiona, the premature hippo born at the Cincinnati Zoo. This post is perfect timing with her birthday. Happy 3rd Birthday, Fiona – which is this Friday, 24 January. Here’s the latest local article about her celebrating her birthday.

We saw Ford v Ferrari. Very good movie. A tad long, but tense from early on to the end. FYI: Being a racing is NOT a requirement to enjoy the film.  Click here to see the trailer.

As per the previous published agenda, the two posts (parties) this weekend are designed to be fun – so I hope you participate!

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Instead of leaders promoting the feat they associate with the other side, America needs leaders who are fearless in attacking today’s problems – not to return to a time that has passed – and not to get us stuck in today – but fearless to address today’s issues with an eye on a positive tomorrow.

My thoughts on my Elite 8 states to watch in the 2020 election: Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Michigan, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. Which also means I’m hoping Ohioans will see fewer ads than in the last 2 presidential elections.

I have long believed that Washington has two main problems: Democrats and Republicans. Both are selfish organizations favoring self-serving over governing. Because of their preference of shoving ideals down our throats, I hope that the 2020 election results deliver divided government. We need more, but given the environment, unfortunately divided government is the best answer. Today’s environment lacks the attitude of intentionally gathering to collectively pursue a goal – and then achieve it. But maybe that attitude is only an ideal because politics has always been a selfish nasty fight of us versus them.

For the record, the Senate phase of impeachment is unfortunately a joke and an embarrassment. Then again, they are following the precedent of past impeachments … and the Republican stance is weak, sad, and aimed at the blind faith of partisan hacks. Also, given the precedents, if the Founding Fathers would have seen impeachment playout, I wonder if they would switched the jury responsibility from the Senate to the US Supreme Court.

President Trump is a pathetic person, an even worse leader, and one who brings most of his problems on himself. He’ll take credit for anything and avoid taking responsibility. America deserves better. Unfortunately, a high percentage of Americans don’t believe that, and that’s a problem that is bigger than him.

Given’s President Trump’s normal behavior and high chances of election, odds are very high that he will become the first president to be impeached more than once.

I’m tired of partisan-hack Republicans who continually claim that anti-Trump people don’t feel he was dutifully elected. Hey Jackwagons, I hate to tell you, but most anti-Trumpians would disagree with your statement. You sound like the anti-evolutionists who say, “Evolution says humans came from apes.” Interestingly, I’ve never heard an evolutionist say that.

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Weekly Headlines from The Onion (combos welcome)

Couple decides there are better off as siblings
Financial expert recommends waiting until chaos is law of the land
New cable bundle includes 24/7 live-in tech support
New sip-and-weld studio provides opportunity to drink wine and create own masterpiece with blowtorch
Amazon reviewer posts selfie with toaster
Man afraid he’ll seem vulnerable if he reaches out to fire department for help
30-minute silence in car broken with “We are making good time”
Report: Clicking this link will add you to FBI Watch List

My Combo: Man decides wine, toaster, and blowtorch make chaos better until expert recommends Amazon to silence siblings for help

Interesting Reads

James Bond music – the hits and the misses
A universe with no end?
The F-14 Tomcat
Rise and fall of the Hummer
Impacts of America’s slow-growing population
A discovery that may treat all cancer
Bismarck: The battleship
Where to eat in 2020
Land Use in America
(Photos) Volcanic eruption in the Philippines
(Photos) Contest winners of photo contest involving boulders
(Photos) Ocean Photo Contest winners
(Graphic) China’s global influence
(Graphic) The true size of countries

Selecting a song to send you into the weekend for the last time wasn’t an easy task, but once I heard a podcast that reminded me of this song, I knew it was it. Thanks for reading. In the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 423

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The final Weekend Concert was unbelievable! Thanks to all, and an extra thanks from the bottom of my heart to Dale for her energy and kindness.

Looking at the remaining posts, I finally started charting my departure. I will say that if all goes as planned, I will be around into early February.

Obligations this past week have put me behind – but I’m trying to catch up.

Cincinnati was named after Roman leader Lucius Quinctius Cincinnatus was known for good governance. Because he saw himself as a modern day Cincinnatus, Benito Mussolini donated a statue (in 1931) to Cincinnati (as well as Rome, New Year and Rome, Georgia). That statue has resided in a city park ever since. A Cincinnati council member is considering the statue’s removal. Like any place, the city has its share of issues – but sorry – that is not worth the time and effort.

Although young by European standards, the Cincinnati Symphony will celebrate its 125th year at next weekend’s concert.

The Ohio Medical Board received a submission that being a Browns or Bengals fan in Ohio is a condition that should qualify for medical marijuana treatment.

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The January 5th Meet the Press episode was (for me) one of the best ever. After the opening segment about Iraq, most of the show focused on lies, fake news, biases, and more.

Forgot to mention this last week. I observed this in one home I visited during the holidays. These items were clearly visible: Trump – Make America Great sticker on the outside front door, Trump wall calendar, Trump bobblehead, Trump ashtrays, framed pic of the First Couple, and Trump stickers for holiday cards.

The killing of an Iranian general was significant news. It was also a prime example of how can one believe a president who routinely lies and distorts? If there was a national disaster/event that requires the president to make a national address, who would the listener know if they are receiving the truth?

Until the impeachment proceedings, I have never heard of Rep. Doug Collins (R-GA). The man is a piece of work. Whew. Now he states Democrats “in love with terrorists” and they “mourn Soleimani more than they mourn our Gold Star families who are the ones who suffered under Soleimani.” I yield to a great American orator for my brief response.

I seldom read the columnists from the left or the right, but a recent one by Mark Thiessen (conservative, Washington Post) caught my attention. Personally, it gave me new-found respect for him and provided a faint glimmer of hope. If you are interested, click here.

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Weekly Headlines from The Onion (combos welcome)

Man still can’t believe he’s not a virgin
Report: Only 2% of internet worth sitting through 15-second ad
Man doesn’t want to put too much effort into fixing up house he just going to burn down
Study finds comparing yourself to others actually a pretty good way to gauge success
Woman ties reading shampoo bottle directions in French first to test if she’s secretly smart
Las Vegas residents worried that proposed construction of new casino will bring in riff-raff

Interesting Reads

Advertisers tracking people
The first humans to the Americas
Who was Buddah?
Art of decision making
Differences in snowflakes
Wines around the world
(Graphic) Changing demographics of China and India
(Pictures) An ice festival in China
(Pictures) Culturally important sites in Iran

To send you into the weekend, here’s a Van Morrison song I’ve always enjoyed. In the words of Garrison Keillor, Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.

On Paris in Cincinnati

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This post is one that I’ve wanted to do for many years. As part of my cleaning out the blog closet project, I had to remove the thought from my mind. Although I’ve taken the Paris-Cincinnati flight several times, I’ve never visited the City of Lights. Surely I have to get there someday.

Meanwhile, this will have to do because Paris is alive and well in Cincinnati. In no way am I comparing the two cities, but a touch of Paris is in my area – and some close to my residence. To rid this blog idea from my mind, I got images from elsewhere, but I have visited these locations.

Paris 1900: City of Entertainment was a temporary exhibit at the Cincinnati Art Museum in early 2019. For whatever reason, I didn’t attend, but you can see the exhibit by clicking here. Meanwhile, onto the tour.

 

Kings Island is an amusement park located away from the city center northeast of downtown Cincinnati. Opening in 1971, its Eiffel Tower (one-third of the size of the original) serves as an iconic landmark that is easily visible by motorists driving by on I-71. When I first came to the area, I could see the tower and the nightly fireworks from my balcony. Today, I can still hear them in the distance. Kings Island is also a popular destination for roller coaster enthusiasts.

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Chateau Laroche is also known as Loveland Castle. Don’t you think it has a French look? This unique structure is built on the banks of the Little Miami River. Amazingly, one person (Harry Andrews) built it from stones he carried from the river over 50+ years to create this place based on a castle in southern France. Upon his death, Andrews donated the castle to his Boy Scout troop – Knights of the Golden Trail. Of course, the castle is open to the public. Here’s the website.

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St. Mary’s Cathedral Basilica of the Assumption in Covington, Kentucky (directly across the Ohio River from downtown Cincinnati) is a stunning must-see for visitors to the area. I’ve never been to the famed Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris (and given the fire, I may never). However, the Covington Basilica gives me the feel of what it may be like, but on a much smaller scale.

Dedicated in 1901, the outer west face is an exact copy of the famed Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris and the inside is stunning. Below are two resources to learn and see more

Hope you enjoyed this Paris-Cincinnati connection.

On Local Cubans

Marc (@Sorryless) loves Cuban sandwiches so much, he’s on infinite quest to find his favorite Cuban. As part of his mission, he is willing to travel miles and miles – and even posts about his ventures.

Whether I suggested or it, he was interested in my thoughts about his beloved sandwich in my area, I decided to jump into the fray. Locating nearby establishments was easy – so was trying them – but getting around to writing a post about them was difficult.  With all due respect to Marc, I had to do something!

I present the candidates.

Sharonville Depot Deli

Grilled Cuban – Ham & smoked grilled pork with bread and butter pickles, Muenster cheese, and Dijon mustard on Ciabatta

Lyle’s Trailside

Lyle’s BBQ Cuban – Pulled pork topped with shaved ham, melted provolone, mustard and pickles

Oasis Golf & Conference Center

Cuban Panini – Shaved ham and sliced pork loin with  brown mustard, pickles & pepper jack  cheese. Served in a grilled panini

 

Final Word

Each of the Cubans have positives and negatives, so it comes down to personal preferences

  • The most-fresh tasting – Depot Deli
  • The most hearty – Oasis
  • Most BBQ tasting – Lyle’s Trailside
  • Best presentation – Depot Deli
  • Best accompanying side – Lyle’s Trailside
  • Most surprising – Oasis
  • If I had to pick just one – Depot Deli

For me, given the range of flavors in a Cuban, it’s about balance. One has to be able to taste all the flavors without one particular flavor being too dominant.

On Local Intrigue

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One never knows what encounters lie ahead when strolling through the city.

Batsakes is one of the few custom hat makers remaining in the US (for those who want to know more about this local treasure, here’s a short video)

 

Because of Larry Flynt’s (of Hustler Magazine fame) love affair with local law enforcement, there is a Hustler Store … Did you see the movie?

 

This is what happens to old location of a major department store … What has happened to old department store buildings in your area?

 

The Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County (with its main location in city center) dates back to 1853

 

For those who watch Shark Tank, these guys won … but have since sold off

 

Cincinnati had Kings Records back in the days of vinyl recordings, but I didn’t know about this studio

 

Cincinnati has a minor league hockey team (Cyclones) and a love for pigs … meet Puck Chop …

 

… but in Cincinnati, baseball is king.

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Meet John Roebling and his bridge – The Roebling Bridge – the prototype for the Brooklyn Bridge

 

What do you think this is?

 

 

On a Bit of Cincinnati

Located on the Ohio River, Cincinnati was a center for westward expansion – and it embraces its river heritage

 

Win or lose, Cincinnati embraces it’s baseball team … and we’ve lost a lot in recent years

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Fountain Square is the center of city center … and the place where people gather to celebrate and commemorate

 

Cincinnati love its art deco … these are in the Carew Tower

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The city shines during the day …

 

…. and at night …

 

… and it has quiet places in the city center

 

On the Cincinnati’s Merry-Go-Round, (Carol Ann’s Carousel) riders can choose from 44 handmade Cincinnati-centered characters. Do you have any ideas for these characters? To see all the characters, click here for a video.

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On Extra Murals

Before riding into the blog sunset, I’ve enjoyed cleaning out my blog closet. Whether pictures sitting in folders waiting for the words, notes waiting for expansion, or ideas waiting to be made real – I smile each time when I finally use something in a post.

Cincinnati’s murals have always caught my eye – but Resa is the one who motivated me to create posts about them. Resa, thank you for your encouragement. There are many murals that I’ve wanted to visit, but never got there. On the other hand, I have a hodge-podge collection of unused photos to share. Well – I don’t think I’ve used any of these.

Some of these are creations by ArtWorks – others not. Any favorites?

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To see more of my posts about the murals of Cincinnati, click here.

Thanks to Resa (Toronto’s leading lady) whose posts about street art in Toronto and Winnipeg, got me interested in outdoor art in my area. I invite readers to visit Resa’s blog (but tell her I sent you).