Showing posts with label Ohio. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Ohio. Show all posts

Columbus, OH - Main Street Bridge - video and fun facts

I've received a few e-mails for details on the bridge:
1.7 miles in length
3200 feet above the river
Only single arch, wire suspension bridge in the tri-county area
First "living" bridge; interior is wheat, grasses and microbes for strength
The bridge lifts 75 feet to allow the heavy boat traffic to pass
Once open, the toll will only be $1.00 heading west and $5.00 east
Bono, from U2, described the bridge as "A 22nd century accomplishment; I dig the dangle."
The bridge can hold over 18 cargo containers of mayonnaise (NOT Miracle Whip.)
The Bridge is named after Sylvia T. Main, a Columbus inventor and markswoman

Editorial Fail

I'm pissed.

Some intern from Texas wrote an editorial in our local paper about how Ohio sucks and how great Texas is. I know Ohio sucks, but you can't come marching into my town and shit in my coffee. So I decided to write a letter to this jerk and let him know how I feel. I made the letter really nice!

Nice, right? Almost makes you feel warm inside.

That would be all well and good, except the secret to Ohio pride is that I inserted a secret message as to how I really feel about this guy. The problem is that the editorial staff decided to edit my letter, just slightly to make it fit their format, which ruined my message. Check out the first letter of each sentence. Here's a cheat:

It spells out: TOUCHEBAI

They changed my first letter D (from Dear into To) and they changed the last sentence from a G (I started it out "Good Luck").


That's the secret to Ohio pride, asshole. Don't come up here to go to my school and then dump on my state, douchebag. I mean, touchebai.


Ohio is all about waiting: waiting for the first snow and then waiting for it to go away. Waiting for the first hint of spring and then waiting for it to stop raining. Waiting for school to be out and vacation. Waiting for football season. Waiting for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Waiting for the ball to drop and waiting to wait. But I like it.

Ohio has four distinct seasons. In between each of those seasons are two perfect days. You almost don’t notice them because they are so pleasant. You have to look over your shoulder to realize they were there. I look out for them and I wait.

Most people who move to Ohio become acclimated pretty quickly. They might miss their brand of coffee or their bakery or deli. But they fall into line and march in step with the rest of us. People that leave Ohio never really do. You carry the Midwest in your back pocket along with your manners and self esteem. You can see them in the subway making eye contact and you can hear them in line at the grocery saying, “Thanks!”

I don’t think I’m leaving here anytime soon. More than likely, you’ll be coming here. We’ll show you around and buy you a cup of so-so coffee. You’ll find yourself wishing you had brought your jacket to the high school football game, but not needing it by the end of the night. You’ll find people waving at you for no reason and realize it was because you waved first. You’ll put down mulch and actually fertilize the roses. You’ll notice that the second lowest branch on the tree would be perfect for a swing and in fact there are two parallel scars in the bark where someone had that same idea fifteen years ago.

Ohio’s not perfect, but it’s good. And that’s perfect.

The Kramer Triplets do the O-H-I-O

Triplets? Yeah, I know, there's four of them. I had to take Jenn and shop her in as that fourth letter.

Elementary School Teaching American Children English… With a British Accent!

LANCASTER, OH - Tallmadge Elementary in Lancaster, Ohio is a very normal Midwestern grade school: there's a flag pole, kids running around on the playground, a cafeteria that smells a little like Johnny-Marzetti and a whole generation of children learning the Queen's English. And when I say Queen's English, I mean with the British accent, right-o!

Harken Stackmore is the 3rd grade English teacher and teaches the children Received Pronunciation or as you and I might call it, British Accent English. (Read Mr. Stackmore's quotes with a British accent for full effect.) "The children are marvelous pupils and have accepted learning proper English not only in a grammatical sense, but with a British flair as well." When asked why teach and enforce a British accent, Mr. Stackmore was very clear, "A British accent sounds more intelligent that the standard American accent. These Midwesterns run their e's and o's together and add extra syllables where none should exist. I'm not only making them smarter… I'm making them sound smarter."

Principal Harvey Rogers agrees with Harken Stackmore, "When I watch an infomercial on the T.V., I tend to think the British people sound smarter. I'm more likely to buy from one or vote on American Idol for whoever the British person says to." When the program started, Principal Rogers was a bit doubtful, "I didn't think it was gonna work, but when I heard a nine year old girl talking in an accent about her 'pleats and whatnot' I was sold."

Local parents are still a little unsure. Marion Rents' son, Bill, is in the fourth grade and into his second year of British English, "Bill says stuff and I can't understand him sometimes. Of course, before the class, he said a lot of stuff I didn't understand much neither." Her husband was a little less critical, "He sounds like a military officer from the movies. I think it's cool." Bill did not have much to say except, "I like it. I like it a lot."

Mr. Stackmore teaches his style of Queen's English in three parts. He explained, "Part one involves re-learning pronunciation of the alphabet. This is accomplished by watching the film 'Mary Poppins' over and again. Part two is sub-divided into common British phrases and learning how to be embarrassed easily. Part three is comprised of slang, cockney insults and talking about how much better we British are than the rest of the world."

While Mr. Stackmore continues his classes and guiding the other teachers on British pronunciation and gestures, he hopes that someday his methods will spread throughout Ohio and the United States, "The colonies could use a good verbal scrubbing. And I've got the oratory brush to do it. Look, I have no choice but to acknowledge Britain's diminished status in the world. But, I'm trying to do my part for Queen and country. While we Brits can no longer say 'The Sun Never Sets on the British Empire,' I'm hoping that we can at least say that 'The Sun Never Sets on the British Accent.' Cheerio, Governor."

Ohio BMV to allow emoticons on license plates

COLUMBUS, OH- The Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles is allowing Ohio motorists to communicate their feelings on their license plates through something you might have seen on the internet or in your e-mail. Marcy Lance, OBMV spokesperson explains, “They’re called emoticons and drivers are going to love them!”

Emoticons are punctuation and letters that when lined up in a certain pattern, can resemble facial expressions. A colon and right parenthesis can make a smiley face :) while a semi-colon and a right parenthesis makes a winking smiling face ;).

Lance calculates that, “…with the addition of sixteen characters, we can add 23,493,332 different license plates to the system. This could bring in an additional $1.5 million per year to the BMV.”

Ohio State Highway Patrol Sergeant Brian Beekey is not as thrilled. “It is very difficult to relay a colon or a semi colon back to HQ. When I am running a plate, I need to know what the letters and numbers are without saying, ‘smiley face’ or ‘disappointed.’ I can't tell the difference between 'flirt' and 'bored!'"

Cheri Bascone, personalized plate owner, was also unhappy, “I waited eighteen years to get the ‘JESUS’ license plate and tomorrow someone will be able to get a ‘JESUS:-P’ tongue sticking out plate? That just ain’t Christian.”

There will be some restrictions to the emoticons. “We will only allow positive expressions,” stressed Marcy Lance. “Sadness, shocked or crying emoticons will not be allowed. We are still up in the air about using asterisks."

I am from Columbus

Don’t do it. You always do. I did too, but as of today, I am quitting.

Columbus is a big boy now. Bigger and better than Cleveland or Cincinnati (no offense.) Our pro teams might suck and we all might be a little over the top for Ohio State, but Columbus has a lot of character and we’ve made a name for ourselves as a growing technology Mecca. We’ve got awesome restaurants, an interesting art community, fantastic museums and CD 101, one of the best radio stations in the country.

So why is it that most of you (including me) feel like you have to say Ohio right after you say Columbus? No one says Los Angeles, California unless they are the governor of said state or New York, New York unless they are singing. Columbus is a city unto itself and needs no additional explanation. If you are from Springfield, you might want to tack on an OH afterward. If you are from Lancaster, you’ll get blank stares until you elaborate with the state. By my count, there are 18 other Columbuses in the United States and none of them even come close to being as profound as Columbus.

From this point on, Columbus is Columbus. If the person you are speaking with asks “which Columbus?” you should curtly reply with one of the following suggested phrases:

- Is there another Columbus?
- You are kidding, right?
- Don’t even say you think I’m talking about Columbus, New Jersey
- Christopher Columbus, jerky
- (stare at them until they walk away or if it is over the phone, let out an extended “Duuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuh,” until they hang up)

The only way this will work is if we all stand up and make our voices (or lack of voice) be heard (or not heard when choosing not to say Ohio.) Where are you from? Columbus!

I am from Columbus. And now, so are you.

Darwin Robinette

Darwin Lee Robinette, 82, a longtime Rushville resident, died at 6:30 a.m. Thursday, May 10, 2007, at his home.

Darwin was the son of the late Orville and Gladys (Roebuck) Robinette.

He served in the U.S. Army during World War II and graduated from The Ohio State University with a bachelor's degree in aeronautical engineering.

He was recruited by North American Aviation as a flight test engineer working on the Vigilante, OV10A Bronco and the B1 Bomber.

Darwin was very involved with the Boy Scouts of America and was Troop Master of Troop 278 for 10 years.

He and his wife, Thelma, were the owners and operators of the Baskin Robbins Ice Cream Store in Lancaster for 30 years.

Surviving are his wife of 59 years, Thelma (Bliss) Robinette; three sons, Michael, Paul and Jon (Lauren) Robinette; three daughters, Peggy (James) DeJarnatt, Nan (Ralph) VanGundy and Jill (Kelly) Adams; 14 grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; a brother, Nolan Robinette; and a sister, Margaret (Richard) Hamilton.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his brother, Howard Dale Robinette.

A celebration of life will be from 3 to 5 p.m. Saturday at the residence of Jill and Kelly Adams, 758 Schadel Drive N.W., Lancaster, OH 43130.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Alzheimer's Research in honor of Darwin Robinette, The Ohio State Medical Center of Develop-Ment, Fund 305835, P.O. Box 183112, Columbus, OH 43218-3112.

The family would like to express their heartfelt thanks to the AlternaCare and FairHoPe Hospice and Palliative Care, Inc. of Lancaster.

Bope-Thomas Funeral Home in Somerset is in charge of arrangements.

{Author's note: I worked at Baskin Robbins in Lancaster, OH in 1988 through 1991. Darwin (“D”) and his wife Thelma (“T”) were the owners of the store. Because I was 17 and didn’t know any better, I just thought he was just an old guy.

Looking back, I remember a very kind man with a terrific sense of humor. He was very patient with his hormone infused staff. He’d raise his voice when we did stupid stuff, but most the time he’d just roll his eyes.

One of Darwin's well known sayings was, "You've got time to lean, you've time to clean.}

I’m not scarred

Like many of you, I went through the fourth grade. That was when I had my traumatic childhood experience. Everyone has the traumatic childhood experience. If you don’t remember yours, it’s because it was REALLY traumatic and you should seek counseling. Mine wasn’t that traumatic, but it’s really my only one, so I have to pin the brown and black ribbon on it.

Ms. Rice was a fourth grade teacher at Tallmadge Elementary School. She was not my homeroom teacher, so I only saw her for one period a day. I think it was for science. Now I remember it was science, because she gave me a C for my report on the planets that was copied directly out of the encyclopedia. I hate to think that my parents paid thousands of dollars for a set of books that only got me a C.

One day in science class, Ms. Rice asked everyone to be quiet. Everyone got quite. Which made it a lot easier for Ms. Rice to hear me ask the kid next to me for their scissors. She had just about enough. Ms. Rice told me to come to the front of the room. She instructed the other students, “Get out a piece of paper and write something you hate about Doug.”

They did.

“Now stand up and form a line in front of Doug and read what you wrote.”

Doug stinks.
Doug is ugly.
Doug is stupid.
Doug talks in class. (You got me there.)
Doug is smelly.

I don’t remember a lot of what they wrote. I definitely remember the Doug stinks. At first I tried to laugh it off. And then I cried. Come on, I was in the 4th grade.

The last person read their paper. I was sent back to my seat and we finished what ever we were doing. Everyone was told to throw their papers away. I went home and didn’t say a word.

Andy Friesner was a friend of mine at the time and he felt bad about it. Bad enough that he took several notes out of the trash and took them home to his parents. His parents called mine. Mine questioned me and then called the school. There was a too do.

I would have to call my mom to remind me of what happened after that. I’m sure she’d love to talk about it and get all fired up again. I seem to recall that the next day all the kids wrote nice things about me and I was to take the nice pieces of paper home and show them to my parents. Jamie Barnes (upon a proofread, I’m realizing that this might be a good point to preface that Jamie is a girl) asked me to be her square dance partner in Gym class. That might have all been worth it.

I’m not scarred. Thinking about it makes me sad. But mainly because I’m now remembering these people from my past. I haven’t talked to Andy in years. He is a great guy. And that my long lost love Jamie Barnes hasn’t thought about me in years.

Ms. Rice? My understanding is that she is now an educational administrator somewhere. I searched the internet for “Ms. Rice is a stinking filthy whore” but did not get any search results. I’m not scarred.

Fat Cats Pizza is dead to me

“The only way to hurt a man who has lost everything is to give him back something broken." – Thomas Covenant

There was a survey on FARK a few days ago about where readers thought the best pizza in the world was. Everyone had their hometown favorite. My hometown favorite was Fat Cat Pizza in Lancaster, OH. “Was” is the word that puts the anchovies in that sentence.

We started picking up Fat Cat Pizza around 1979. They wouldn’t deliver out to our house out in the country so we had to drive through the bad side of town, the West Side, to get it. They had the BEST freaking pizza. The crust was thin and crisp. The sauce…(Here’s where I realize I am not a food critic nor am I keen to taste adjectives. Let’s just say it was great pizza.)

There was a Fat Cat’s West and a Fat Cat’s East. Rumor had it that a happily married pizza business couple became unhappy and split the family business, as well as the town of Lancaster, in half. The wife took Fat Cat’s West and hubby, Fat Cat’s East. I can’t remember the woman’s name, but she had a dog named Bear.

My brother started working at Fat Cat around 1983. My sister in 1985. I started in 1986. It was a family affair. You’d go in at either 4 or 5 and work until midnight. The dough was made in the morning and allowed to rise in wheeled, Rubbermaid trash cans. You would grab a ball of it and throw it in the flattening machine. A toss here and there and then on to the pie pan. There was some hand held, mid-evil torture device made from plastic that put dents in the dough. Add sauce, cheese and toppings. Into the oven you witch! Ta da, magically a cooked pizza came out the other side. In the box and cut it into squares with the giant, stainless steel scythe. In between pizzas there was time to fold boxes and drink free pop out of flour coated mason jars. What a job.

Then three-a-days started with Coach Redmen in football and I pussied out. I couldn’t keep up with going from 6am practices through midnight making pizzas. So I quit Fat Cat Pizza.

I didn’t quit eating it though. In my opinion, nothing beats a pepperoni/mushroom. I dreamed of it in Alaska and wrote about it in my journal when Acton and I went to Europe. At family gatherings we would always get Fat Cat’s the night before turkey. If you were late, dad would heat up slices in the oven. If you were really late, the microwave.

Now I live in Columbus and Fat Cat’s is still within reach. If I drive down, I can order it from the car and pick it up right as it comes out of the oven. It would still be warm when I got it home, but half of it would get devoured in the car. Corners first and eat inward.

Greg had a party recently. We went out to the Lancaster bars. I left my credit card at one. The perfect excuse to go back to Lancaster and get Fat Cat’s. The following Monday I drove down. I ordered. Picked-up. I was eating a corner within three minutes on the way back to Columbus…

And something was horribly, horribly wrong. The crust was different. Some kind of French bread crap. It was slightly thicker and had a taste that was not Fat Cat’s. The sauce was the same as well as the pepperoni and the mushrooms, but the combination of flavors was not Fat Cat’s. I kept eating squares, hoping that something would change. Nothing did. Doug wept.

I immediately called a few friends. I finally tracked down one that corroborated my taste buds. He had it a few weeks ago and it tasted different to him too. It was true. And an era was over.

Farewell Fat Cat’s.

Author’s note: I haven’t done it yet, but please feel free to call Fat Cat’s at 740-687-1966 and voice my displeasure. Tell them HolyJuan is pissed.