Category: Uncategorized

Why oh why oh, did I ever leave Ohio? A songlist to vote by

Ohio, you’re so fun, especially during election time. I know I’m in the minority, but I have been enjoying the flurry of mostly local campaign ads and direct mailers in this final gasp of the election season.

I can contribute this euphoria to three personal and selfish items:

  1. I’ve been able to avoid all robo-calls…so far.
  2. My volunteer project with the Cincy League of Women Voters’, (the production of the printed and electronic versions of the candidate/issues guides) is complete. I do love the sound of 100,000 copies of the Who & What hitting the pavement around town.
  3. My absentee ballot has returned to its mother ship at the Board of Elections.

So for me, its all over but the shoutin’ and the countin’. In celebration, I’ve created an Ohio playlist to inspire during this final week of election mania (Listed by song, artist and website to listen).

  • Carmen Ohio by Ohio State Marching Band (OSU Mp3)
  • Ohio by Crosby Stills Nash & Young (YouTube with history clips )
  • Down on the Banks of the Ohio by Blue Sky Boys (YouTube)
  • Look at Miss Ohio by Gillian Welch (
  • Cincinnati, Ohio by Connie Smith (YouTube. Ain’t she cute?)
  • South of Cincinnati by Dwight Yoakam (YouTube. This is really about Kentucky but I love any song with Cincinnati in it)
  • Ohio by Over the Rhine (YouTube)
  • Hang On Sloopy by Ohio State Marching Band (OSU Mp3)
  • Ohio from “Wonderful Town” (Passionato)

Any other suggestions?

Over-the-Rhine Community Housing

Poverty is the focus of Blog Action Day this year. And since I serve on the board of Over-the-Rhine Community Housing, I wanted to let you know more about this nonprofit community development corporation in Cincinnati.

OTRCH’s mission is to stop homelessness by providing affordable housing. According to the Greater Cincinnati Coalition for the Homeless, the loss of income and lack of affordable housing are the top reasons for homelessness in our area, and, in the past 15 years, homelessness in Cincinnati has increased by 150 percent.

OTRCH uses countless hours of volunteer time to turn buildings into affordable housing. This ‘sweat equity’ helps keeps costs low and rents affordable. Groups (schools, churches or businesses) and individuals are welcome to volunteer. OTRCH also has a wonderful internship program–which I can recommend being a former intern myself.

If you want to know more or get involved, OTRCH is hosting its annual fund raising event this week on Thursday, October, 16 at Music Hall (PDF of invitation). Historian and newscaster Dan Hurley is scheduled to speak about It’s About People: The History and Future of Over-the-Rhine.”

I hope to see you there.


We’ve been dealing with the after-effects of Hurricane Ike in Cincinnati this week. The wind damage knocked out power to most of the region for a few days, and some people are still without service. It was such a strange event and demonstrated just how vulnerable we all are.

On a lighter note, I had the perfect song stuck in my head for the event: The folk song “Electricity” by Paul Burch.

“I’ve got fire in a wire…”

Kid mislearnin’

I giggled like a little boy while I was listening to this week’s This American Life and their segment on kids who misinterpret things and continue to believe them into adulthood. My favorite was the woman who passionately defended the addition of unicorns to the endangered species list at a dinner party.

Oh, the stories I could on myself. Directions on toothpaste confounded me for years. “For best results, squeeze tube from the bottom.” Why would toothpaste would clean better if squeezed from the bottom? I thought maybe it needed to be shaken up like salad dressing or excess gases from the toothpaste factory should be separated from the paste. I’m proud to report I figured out the toothpaste is just easier to get OUT of the tube when squeezed from the bottom… All by myself… By the time i was 25.

Another classic was junk mail. It always came in our mailbox addressed either to our household “or Current Resident.” But when your family name is Currence and you are learning the rules of grammar, such as plural vs. singular, you start to wonder why the backup plan for a catalog would go to just one of us. It wasn’t until I was a teenager that I realized, as a Curren(ce) Resident, i personally was entitled to read everyone’s junk mail. A right I still invoke.

My iPhone bling: Web apps I use

I wish I could join those of you who are getting the 3G iPhone tomorrow. Alas, I’ve only had my iPhone for 6 months, so I’m not planning to upgrade for a while. The 3G will be great, but EDGE has taught me great patience. How else am I going to hear the sounds of nature if my YouTube videos don’t take 5 minutes to load?

I am a PC iPhone user, which can be a challenge since I don’t have iCal. After 2 weeks of research, I went with the (free) system of using Google Calendar with Plaxo to manually sync with my home computer’s Outlook and iPhone.

The only mishap I had was installing Google sync for Microsoft Outlook when it first launched, thinking it would be great to cut out the Plaxo step. The little bugger wiped my whole calendar–history and future–within 60 seconds. I immediately deleted the app and cried.

(BTW, in case of a future data wipe, I now archive my past months on Google calendar by creating PDFs, using Google Docs, to file away in Gmail.)

I also use Remember the Milk for my to-do list with the iPhone upgrade, and absolutely love Jott to create voice-to-text reminders.

I’ll be keeping my eye on MobileMe from Apple once it’s launched.

And just think, I was actually using a paper planner this time last year. Pfft.

Crosswalks are where it’s at

So many pedestrians lately have been waving me to pass them while they’re standing in crosswalks. Is this the new power trip? Today, I refused to turn into crosswalk where a guy was standing there in the street, 5 feet from the curb. It was like the Titanic leaving port: He waved, I waved. He waved, I waved and cursed. Finally, he scampered across the street like he should have 45 seconds before.

It felt good fighting back. The pedestrians are out of control.