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Tom's Book in Progress
- My Orbiting Grandmother

 

Short North Gazette publisher Tom Thomson (right) with the late Maynard E. "Jack" Sensenbrenner,
Mayor of Columbus. His Honor the Mayor once said, "I guess what I'd like people to say about me later is,
"Here was a guy who saw life and helped lift the level of the age he lived in. He didn't just eat, burp and go home."

(December 2003)

Buckeye Blues

There were a lot of sad faces around town after Michigan trounced our beloved Buckeyes. The mood reminded me a lot of the disappointment expressed in that famous poem "Casey at the Bat" by Ernest L. Thayer. Remember how it ends?

Oh, somewhere in this favored land the sun is shining bright,

The band is playing somewhere, and somewhere hearts are light.

And, somewhere men are laughing, and little children shout,

But there is no joy in Mudville – Mighty Casey has struck out.

In our own case, it might alleviate our disappointment if we consider how many teams would love to have gone through two seasons with only a couple of losses.

Another thing to remember: It's just a game. You can't win them all. One more point. If we're as great as we claim to be, then it wouldn't hurt to show a little respect for a team that manages to beat us!

Dining Delight

R. J. Snapper's continues to be my favorite seafood restaurant in Columbus. The ambiance is fantastic &endash; like visiting a romantic seaside village, so magical I keep thinking I hear the mysterious bleating of foghorns in the distance.

And, the food? Scrumptious! My favorite is the salmon dinner with scallops running a close second. The house salad is also delicious and unique.

Also important: The folks who work there are thoroughly professional - and friendly. Brandy Roush is a great bartender, and Im always intrigued by Angie Lauer's upswept hair.

Hello Al!

Al Eichenlaub is a new nighttime chef at Zeno's, 384 West Third Avenue. Al comes to his new job with an impressive batch of credentials.

He was Sunday Brunch Chef at the long gone but not forgotten Once Nation Restaurant .

For a few Years he tried his hand at Hat and Sole Inc., a store that specialized in exclusive men's hats and Birkenstock and Naot sandals.

And, for a good many years and still counting, he has been a blue's entertainer and band leader. Under what name, you ask?

Why, Big Al & His Capital City Players, of course.

 

Nature Notes

Don't forget to put food out for the birds and squirrels. Yes, even squirrels have to eat, even though they can be a pain in the neck when they appropriate a bird feeder. Suet feeders are nifty too and are especially appreciated by woodpeckers and nuthatcjes among others. Keep a list of the birds seen in and from your yard. Keep a list. Put it on the fridge. Make a game of it.

 

Crime Clinic

You'll have to jolt your memory a bit to solve these questions that dwell on the macabre and grisly underside of life.

1. She gave her mother forty whacks and when she saw what she had done, she gave her father forty-one. Who are we talking about?

2. Who was betrayed by the Lady in Red?

3. Who kidnapped and murdered little Bobby Franks?

4. Who allegedly kidnapped and murdered the Lindbergh baby?

5. Who was the leader of the gang that killed Sharon Tate?

6. Who allegedly assassinated President Kennedy?

7. What OSU department head murdered his mistress?

 

Dis 'n Data

The gala Jan. 6 Holiday Hop features brass bands, carolers, and carriage rides, and lots more, in addition to great shopping, fine dining, and unexcelled people-watching. And keep an eye out for the Dooley Holiday Coaches!

Don't forget Winter Fair at the Ohio State Fairgrounds in the Bricker Multi-purpose Building, from Dec. 4 to 7.

The Short North Tavern's John Allen popped the question to Liz Blevins and she said yes. The couple haven't set a date yet.

A couple of months ago Bob Munley spotted a Great Blue Heron in the Goodale Park pond.

Joke: I say, "I just saw a human toe out on the sidewalk!"

You say, "What did you do?"

I say: "I called a tow truck."

 

Quiz Answers

Okay, sleths, here are the answers.

1. Lizzie Borden

2. John Dillinger

3. Richard loeb & Nathan Leopold

4. Bruno Haoptman

5. Charlie Manson

6. Lee Harvey Oswald

7. Dr. James Snook

 

Do good, be happy, stay out of jail, and I'll see you next month.

 

 

 

(From the Nov. '03 issue)

Lazarus Lament

What a shame the downtown Lazarus store will be shutting its doors next summer. And, yet, you could see it coming. In a way, it's amazing they held on as long as they did.

Ever since the trashing of downtown Columbus started in the '70s, there's been an exodus of first-class institutions from the central city. Previously, there had been numerous department stores and classy retail establishments. To name a few: the Union, the Fashion, Morehouse-Martins, and Dunn-Tafts. There were fashionable men's and women's clothiers, comfortable hotels, more ten-cent-stores than you could shake a stick at, and enjoyable restaurants and bars galore. Nothing much left now but corporate high-rise boxes and parking lots.

Thank goodness for the Short North!

Goodbye Greg

I was so saddened to learn of the death of James Greg Hill, a neighbor of mine for many years. For some reason, he preferred the name Greg over James. Be that as it may, he was a rare individual who was always pleasant, never com-plained, and was vitally interested in the natural world around him. He was someone you could talk to, never rushed through conversations, listened thought-fully to your every word, looked you directly in the eye with a knowing smile. He worked at The Ohio Company for 32 yrs. Goodbye, Greg, you'll be missed.

GI Gifts

The residents and staff at Heartland Victorian Village nursing facility and rehab center are raising funds to purchase holiday gifts for members of the 1485th Transportation Company, Ohio National Guard stationed in Iraq.

The 170 soldiers in the company were mobilized in February 2003. Anyone who is interested in contribut-ing to the fund should call 464-2273 and ask for Kris Dudley, Denise Dunn, Heidi Smith, or Autumn Hoover.

Nature Notes

What a glorious autumn we were privileged to enjoy this year. Coming after a rather hectic year of wind and rain storms, it was a welcome relief, believe me you.

I think the trees and many other plants were happy and relieved in their own way that the year wound down in such a pleasant fashion.

Maybe that's why they look so hale and hearty and the reason they treated us to a nice display of color.

Dis 'n Data

Dragonfly neo v cuisine, 247 King Avenue, has opened their own bakery &endash; and you wouldn't believe the fantastically delicious goodies that are popping out of their ovens! Cheesecakes, muffins, sweet rolls, bread of all descriptions.

Don't forget the International Festival, November 8 - 9, at Veteran's Memorial Hall, 300 West Broad Street. Hours on Saturday are 10 am to 9 pm; Sunday 11 am to 6 pm. Over 60 countries will be represented by 150 exhibitors. Don't miss this opportunity.

Design Group recently received a Gold Medal Award from the Ohio Chapter of the American Institute of Architects.

Welcome to David C. Cunningham, Investment Representative for the Edward Jones Company which opened an office at 850 North High Street last month.

Last month Bob Munley spotted a Great Blue Heron in the Goodale Park pond.

 

Quiz for Idiots

Okay, here it is by popular demand, our first annual Quiz for Idiots. Fasten your seat belts and here we go!

1. What is the capital of the U.S.A.?

2. What is the capital of Canada?

3. What century is this?

4. Who is the governor of Ohio?

5. Who are the two U.S. senators from Ohio?

6. What county is Columbus in?

7. What planet do we live on?

8. Who is the Vice-president of the United States?

9. Name five states that abut Ohio.

10. What is the capital of Mexico?

 

Quiz Answers

Okay, bubbleheads, here are the answers.

1. Washington, D.C.
2. Ottawa
3. Twenty-first
4. Robert Taft
5. George Voinovich, Mike DeWine
6. Franklin
7. Earth
8. Dick Cheney
9. Indiana, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, West Virginia
10. Mexico City

Do good, be happy, and I'll see you next month.

(From the Oct. '03 issue)

Halloween Hop

Booo! Clank, clank, clank of chains! Oooooo! Wailing of ghosts!

You guessed it. Halloween's around the corner -and here's an idea for the Short North Business Association, and everybody else.

Why not use Halloween as a theme for a Gallery Hop? Hold on, you say! "There's a little disparity here in calendar dates."

OK, I say. Let's bend the rules a tad. Every good rule deserves an exception. Let's move the November Gallery Hop a day or two forward and make it a Halloween Hop! It's a natural! And, think of all the fun to be had!

Folks would be encouraged to come to the Hop in costumes, tooting toy horns. Merchants could be costumed too. There might be a haunted storeroom someplace, contests, designated ghosts and goblins. Street venders could sell apple cider and doughnuts.

I'm sure many people would show up just to see the sensational spectacle of all the ghoulishly garbed gatherers!

And, do you wanna know something else? Columbus used to have a wonderful Halloween celebration right downtown.

It was like a festival. A regular masque-rade ball. People traveled from all over Central Ohio for this event.

So what happened? It was cancelled because of a penitentiary riot and never reinstituted.

Well, the pen has been torn down, so let's not be intimidated any longer.

 

Nature Notes

I haven't seen a nighthawk all year. This once common bird has all but disappeared from the local scene. I used to love watching them as they flew erratically about the evening sky, sometimes power diving to please their lady love.

Why have they suddenly become so rare? One theory is that crows were gobbling up the nighthawk eggs which

were laid out in the open on flat rooftops. Now crows are on the decline because of the West Nile Virus. Maybe the nighthawks will come back. I hope so.

 

Dining Donations

Project OpenHand invites everyone to DINE OUT for a great cause. Enjoy a meal at participating restaurants on Thursday, October 16 and a portion of

the proceeds will be used to meet the nutrition needs of persons living with HIV and AIDS. Some generous restaurants in our neighborhood that you might want to patronize are:

Betty's Fine Food & Spirits, 680 N. High; Dragon Fly neo-v cuisine, 247 King Ave.; Spinelli's Deli, 767 Neil Ave. at Thurber Center; Union Station Video Café, 630 N. High St.; Burgundy Room, 642 N. High; Strada World Cuisine, 106 W. Vine St., and Tapatio, 491 N. Park St.

For a complete list of participants email pohc@aol.com or call 298-8334.

 

Laptop Leisure

The Waiting Room Espresso Lounge at 874 N. High Street is one neat new place. Great coffee, pastries, fruit smoothies, bagels, deli sandwiches, and vegan options are offered. Also available, free computer hook-ups. Stop in and help them celebrate their Grand Opening during the October Hop.

Quickie Quiz

How many head football coaches has OSU had? Ok, see how many you can name. Answers are at the end of this column.

Dis 'n Data

Winged Migration, the breathtaking documentary about birds, is still playing at the Main Street Drexel. It's wonderful! By the way, if you have any interest in our feathered friends, catch WOSU-AM's Open Line Bird Watching program Thursday, October 16 at 6:30 pm. I'll be there along with Ralph Ramey, Lois Day, and the show's host, Tom Wiebell. We might have Don Burton to bring us up to date on the West Nile Virus.

Don't forget that Kimberly Ingram of Wild Plum is always ready to solve all of your floral needs. She recently celebrated her second anniversary at 938 Dennison Avenue. If you need innovative floral arrangements for your wedding, commitment ceremony, or any kind of gathering, call her at 298-0571.

Nobody seems to know what happened to Roadhouse Annie's. The cozy little eatery has been around for years, but now their doors are locked.

Caren Petersen of A Muse Gallery has opened up a trendy little shop, To Muse, right next door to the Drexel Theatre at 1245 Grandview Avenue.

One of my favorite magazines nowa-days is Vanity Fair. Too bad it has such a ritzy name because it's loaded with everything from celeb stuff to mysteries.

 

Quiz Answers

How soon we forget! OK, fans, here are the answers.

Head football coaches who have guided the gridiron destinies of OSU since it became big-time are: Jack Wilce, Sam Willaman, Francis Schmidt, Paul Brown, Carroll Widdoes, Paul Bixler, Wesley Fesler, Woody Hayes, Earle Bruce, John Cooper, and Jim Tressel. That's it. Eleven!

 

Do good, be happy, and I'll see you next month.

 

(From the Sept. '03 issue)

Fat Chance

Received a nice little invitation the other day inviting our editor Margaret to an informal gathering with Mayor Michael Coleman. The occasion? To celebrate "the reality of the mayor's vision of the Downtown Revitalization Program."

The upcoming get-together is spon-sored by Long & Wilcox, a real estate development company. All well and good, so far. But as I was scanning the invitation, the following phrase caught my eye: "enjoy cocktails and heavy 'hors d'oeuvres."

"Heavy hors' d'oeuvres?"

The deuce! We're not subjecting our editor to heavy hors' d'oeuvres! Not a chance. We like her waist size just the way it is!

Another thing. What the heck are heavy hors' d'oeuvres anyway? Biscuits that didn't make it? Failed omelets? A baked bean soufflé? Pound cake?

Well, they certainly got one thing right on the invitation: the tab for the affair is two hundred and fifty bucks. That's heavy!

Thus, it is with hesitant but heavy hearts that we decline the invitation. Thanks anyway and, say, it might be a good idea to have a supply of bicarbonate of soda on hand.

Just kidding, guys.

Have a great party for a worthwhile cause!

 

Viva! Via Colori!

Via Colori continues an old tradition of street painting.

Originally practiced by Italian war veterans of the early Renaissance, today

it is celebrated throughout the world &endash; and it's coming to the Short North

Arts District! Saturday and Sunday, September 13 and 14 are the big days. Mark your calendars !

The event will help celebrate the opening of the new I-670 and will take place right down there on the new highway just hours before it is opened to traffic. This, my friends, took careful planning, not to speak of precise timing!

Artists from all over Central Ohio will participate and create their own works of art. The Gazette is proud to have Paul Volker, who has done many a Gazette cover, create a work of art on the 10' x 10' square we are sponsoring. If you want to sponsor a square, call the Short North Business Association at 228-8050.

But whatever you do, come join the fun and help make history. There will be live entertainment, plenty of food, refresh-ments, and lots more!

 

Lit Bits

I am reading up a storm. Half a dozen or more books. Fact and fiction. I'm reading them all at the same time. The ones I've read before, I just dip into. A little bit here, a little bit there. Whatever mood strikes me. I'm obviously not reading for continuity or the main thrust of a particular volume. Instead, I consider it more like a literary smorgasbord.

Books I've never read before are a different matter. I read a chapter or so, then put them down and come back to them later. In other words, I take my time digesting what I've read.

Okay, here's what I'm into:

American Son, a new book by Richard Blow, the sad story of John Kennedy, Jr.

Tropic of Cancer, by Henry Miller. A return visit to this famous book and a rediscovery of what a fine writer the author was.

The Celestine Prophecy, by James Redfield. Sort of a spooky read.

The Book of Illusions, by Paul Auster. Another spooky story that I've just gotten into.

 

Quickie Quiz

In regard to last month's Quickie Quiz in which I asked my readers what three persons they would most like to have known.

This got a response from reader Procol J. Payer who reminisced about a game called "Scruples." He then recalled how he and his friends sometimes made up their own questions. One example was:

"Given no restrictions, who would you choose as your:

1. Dinner guest

2. Best friend

3. Lover

Before giving his own answers, Procol suggested we run for cover if any married couples are around taking the quiz. Oh, his answers were: 1. Norman Mailer, 2. Paul Simon, 3. Linda Ronstadt.

 

Dis 'n Data

Dozens of people have called and written to tell me where there are morning glories galore. Seems like I was looking in all the wrong places, plus it was too early in the season when I was out snooping around all the alleys in the neighborhood.

Fred Andrle, host of WOSU-AM Open Line, will be reading some of his poetry, along with Charlene Fix, at Scottie MacBean Roastery in Beechwold, 4675 N High Street, at 7 pm on Sunday, September 28. Fred definitely has a way with words. And he's a passionate guy, so who knows what you might hear!

Do good, be happy, and I'll see you next month.

 

 

 

 

(From the Aug. '03 issue)

Morning Glories

My editor asked me if I would find some morning glories and photograph them. She needed a picture to illustrate a little vignette in this issue by A Young.

"Sure," I cheerfully replied, thinking to myself that this photo assignment would be a snap. Ha Ha! Pun intended, but not only that, how wrong I was!

Well, here is what I found out about morning glories. They are wild, reclusive vines, preferring out-of-the-way back alleys, and long-forgotten fences.

Over a period of several days, I traveled up and down most of the alleys of Victorian and Italian Villages, Harrison West, and Grandview. Upper Arlington apparently doesn't believe in alleys. Well, that's their loss, because I discovered that back alleyways are usually more interesting than the more ostentatious streets out front.

My good friend Tom Barney who works at Boulevard Gardens helped me by locating a couple of plants there. Trouble is they weren't in full bloom, so I continued my search and, I'll tell you one thing: Morning glories are not common.

In my wanderings, I found plenty of purple cone flowers, black-eyed Susans, lilies of various persuasions, roses, iris, and chicory plants, but precious few morning glories!

I found my share of birds that hang out in such quiet and cloistered places.

There were plenty of mourning doves, house sparrows, starlings, robins, and cardinals. However, there were not as many of the little rosy-colored house finches as in previous years.

All in all, my morning glory mission failed. But the photo of the train by Marguerite Cox Molk that we ended up using with Young's vignette made us both happy and seems to follow the spirit of the piece.

New Name

The Short North Performing Arts Association has a nifty new name.

The organization is now calling itself CityMusic. Well-known for presenting folk and chamber music concerts in the Short North, the new title better reflects their diverse audience, according to Artistic Director Steve Rosenberg.

"Our impact now reaches beyond the Short North," Rosenberg said in a statement.

The Chamber series will continue to be held at the Elevator Brewery and Draught Haus, 161 N. High Street. The five-concert season will commence October 12 at 2 pm with the Vienna Mozart Trio from Austria. Meanwhile, the CityMusic Folk Sampler has a new home at the Brickyard, 165 Vine Street. Its three-concert season starts September 28 at 7 pm with the Holmes Brothers, a soul and gospel group.

For ticket information, call 228-6224.

 

Quickie Quiz

My old friend Emerson Burkhart had a little game he often trotted out for unsuspecting friends, waitresses, bar-tenders, whoever. It went like this: He would ask them to name the three people who ever lived they would most like to have known.

After he did this, the recipients of the question would wander around in half a daze as they pondered their answers, Another version would be to limit the answers to living people.

You would be surprised at how revealing of a person's beliefs this little game is.

 

Dis 'n Data

The beautiful mural on the wall facing Frezno's dining patio is reminiscent of a Van Gogh painting. Check it out.

Europia has a series of wine appreciation classes on the following dates:

• August 7

• September 11

• October 9

• November 6

Call them at 460-3000 to sign up.

Extra Terrestrial, the great Short North auto detailing place, has moved to 1167 Mt. Pleasant Avenue.

Dave McLaughlin recently sold his popular Pisa Pete's to John Bomack. After extensive remodeling, the new establishment will open as Basi Italia. Plans call for greatly increased seating.

Do good, be happy, and I'll see you next month!

 

(FROM THE JULY '03 ISSUE)

Life's Links

Life is what you make it, I guess. Or as Robert Frost implied in his memorable poem "The Road Not Taken," the choice is always ours.

I was in the Thurber Village Big Bear recently and decided I wanted a New York Times. Walking over to the service counter where they keep the newspapers, I ended up standing in line behind a silver-haired gentleman, impeccably dressed in a Palm Beach suit, shirt, and tie.

Acting on an impulse, I spoke up in a cheery voice and said, "You're so dressed up, I would guess you're going to a wedding!"

He turned to face me, smiled, and replied: "I'm a professional man so I dress like this every day."

"Oh?" What profession are you in?" I asked.

"I'm an attorney," he answered in a friendly manner.

"I'm a professional man, too," I said, knowing he would have a hard time believing it what with my scruffy jeans, a tee shirt, and my proverbial beat-up cap.

"And what would that be?" my new acquaintance asked with genuine interest.

"I publish a neighborhood newspaper, I replied. It's called the Short North Gazette." I looked under the service counter to see if any of our papers were still left, but they were all gone.

We introduced ourselves, exchanged business cards, and chatted for another minute or two or three. You know how slow the lines are at the Bear.

Anyhow, I found out that this pleasant man's name is Harold C. Meier, and his offices are in the old school building at 929 Harrison Avenue.

When I went out to my car, I grabbed a Gazette, went back into the store, found him still standing there, and handed it over.

A lot of extra trouble, you might say. But then I would say, "You never know when you might need a good lawyer!"

Dis 'n Data

Sorry to see the trendy little apparel store Atlantis at King and High sink out of sight. Also closing its doors recently, Plush, the upscale clothing store at 772 N. High Street. But, by the time you read this, Torso will have moved into the space from around the corner.

There are some beautiful yucca plants in front of the house on the northwest corner of Dennison and Wilbur Avenues.

Stop in at Cherry's Art Center sometime and take a look at Big Bertha, the humongous mat-cutting machine that's been installed there. They also have some interesting artwork on display. Cherry's is located at 59 E. Spring Street in downtown Columbus.

We got an e-mail recently from Linda Doersam Crosby, the daughter of Clyde Doersam, who owned Doersam's Restaurant. She's looking for stories and anecdotes about the one-time popular spot on the southwest corner of Broad and High, and has a few of her own to share. Her e-mail address is idcrosby@cox.net.

Quickie Quiz

Okay, here's an easy one. How many makes of automobiles were named after people? Some of the possible answers are at the end of the column.

Anna Lee

We will miss Anna Lee Barry who passed away recently. She was a school-teacher most of her life and an ardent birdwatcher and environmentalist. Anna attended my Continuing Education classes at OSU and loved the hikes our birding group would take in the Clear Creek Valley. She was a true nature lover. One other thing: Anna Lee was a dedicated Democrat, and proud of it!

Quiz Answers

So easy, it's ridiculous! OK, here are a few: Ford, Dodge, Edsel, Studebaker, Buick, Rolls-Royce, Packard, Hudson, Franklin, Rickenbacker …

Dear Margaret and Tom:

Just wanted to tell you that it's for real. My paintings have been accepted for exhibition in Barcelona, Spain at BCN Art Directe Espai d'Art Gallery in the old gothic Quarter and will show July 4 thru July 20, 2003. I am flying over by Swiss Air to attend the opening with my wife Soonja. When I get back to the USA, I'm sure I'll feel ornery and want to do some covers for you guys, if you'd like that. We are very excited about Barcelona; it's quite a distance from Dick's Den.

Best to you all,

W.C. Hemming, artist and painter

PS: Included some of the 15 paintings as jpegs to be shown. Adios and mucho gracias or as they say in Catalan, "moltes gracies." Want to thank you both for having faith in me and my work.

(From the June 1003 issue)

Linen Litany

Okay, here's the question you thought I would never ask, and you should be warned ahead of time this is explosive stuff. So, be forewarned. Ready! Get set! Go!

How often do you change your bed linen? In other words, how often do you change your sheets and pillowcases?

Answer this question truthfully with-out cheating and hedging or don't play at all.

You can make a parlor game out of this when you have company over - but I don't recommend it. And, remember. Absolutely no cheating.

Here we go. Check one of the following:

• Once a week
• Every ten days
• Every two weeks
• Every three weeks
• Monthly
• Every two months
• Quarterly
• Every six months
• Annually
• Every two or three years
• Every decade
• What are sheets and pillow cases?

Suggestions for further uses of this quiz: Send a copy to your in-laws, or maybe your boss. Never send a copy to your girlfriend or boyfriend.

Finally, under no circumstances are we ever going to ask how often you change your underwear. Got that? Never!

James Jive

Our very own staff writer, Elizabeth Ann James, will read with Ellen Seusy at Scottie MacBean Roastery, 4675 N. High Street in Beechwold at 7 pm Sunday June 23. Liz will read poems dedicated to her recently deceased mother, among other current works. An open reading will be offered after the featured readers.

Moon Modes

Northwood ARTSpace presents "Stick to the Moon," playful mixed media cruises from car to wall. Ramona Moon, the Art Car Woman, takes off with toys for her playful three-dimensional art-works, May 7 through June 28, 2003, 2231 N. High Street.

You might note that it's in the Meeting Room 100, which is not available when there are meetings.

If you didn't already know, Ramona Moon is really Christine Hayes, another of our talented staffers.

Petal Plethora

What a spring! Thunderstorms, rain and wind, unseasonable cold, more clouds and rain, rain, rain. I was reminded of what Mark Twain once said: "Everybody complains about the weather, but nobody does anything about it!"

For all of that, we were treated to one of the most glorious displays of spring blooming I've ever seen in my entire life.

From the first tentative maple blossoms to the glorious outpouring of Bradford pears, crab apples, and buckeye trees, it was a botanical fireworks display.

The shrubs, too, were magnificent: the forsythia, the lilac bushes, the honey-suckle, and even the spirea.

Now, in June, we are treated to the luxurious blooming of the catalpa trees.

Quickie Quiz

Here's another little game to keep you mentally alert. Ready? Ok, name at least five literary works that have a bird, animal, tree, or any other kind of plant in the title.

For double scores, name the authors. Answers are at the end of the column.

Dis 'n Data

Welcome to Cow Town Art, located at 668 North High Street. This nifty little gallery is managed by Jason Slagle. Stop in and say hello.

CATCO will host its 2nd Annual Summer Wine Auction on Wednesday, June 11 at Pierre's on Fourth, 590 N. Fourth Street. This is a major fund-raising event and will help keep Central Ohio's only professional resident theatre afloat. Wine and hors d'oeuvres at 6:30 pm, live auction at 8, and dessert at 9:15 pm. For reservations, call Patrick Roehrenbeck at 461-1382, extension 152.

The South Side Settlement is seeking nominations for the 3rd Annual Arts Freedom Awards to be granted to those whose work and life have elevated the human condition and promoted the social good. The deadline is June 27. Call 444-9868. The awards will be given at the Columbus Museum of Art in October.

The Cap is assuming heroic propor-tions! Straddling I-670, this architectural wizardry is going to be one more great attraction in the Short North.

There's a great new bar and restaurant at the old K2U location. It's called the Burgundy Room.

What wonderful guys they are over at the J.R. Body Shop. They're a bit hard to find at 576 W. Second Avenue, but you'll never regret searching for them if your car needs some work on it.

I'm writing a novel, and it's right on the Internet where you can check my progress. It's called The Bird Watcher, and it's mostly about a twenty-one year old young guy trying to find out what life's all about.

When you get on-line, you'll find it at: www.netwalk.com~vireo/boaf.html

Quiz Answers

The Raven, by Edgar Allen Poe; The Cherry Orchard, by Anton Chekoff; To Kill a Mockingbird, by Lee Harper; The Catcher in the Rye, by J. D. Salinger; Ode to a Skylark, by Shelly; One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, by Ken Kesey Ode to a Nightingale, by John Keats; Under Milk Wood, by Dylan Thomas, The Deer Slayer, James Fenimore Cooper; Desire Under the Elms, Eugene O'Neal.

Do good, be happy, and I'll see you next month.

(From the May '03 issue)

Parallel Parker

I'm as big a klutz as the next guy about a lot of things. Fumble and bumble much of the time, that's me. But wait! There's one thing I do superbly well. "What might that be?" you ask with raised eyebrows.

"Parallel parking," I eagerly respond.

If parallel parking were an organized sport, I would be a Gold Medal Olympian. If it were part of NASA's space program, I would be another Neil Armstrong walking on the moon. In the world of golf, Tiger Woods would take second place to my parking talent.

Like a fighter pilot coming in to the flight deck of his (or her) carrier, I bring my vehicle in with a cool and steady spin of the wheel.

With barely a glance over my shoulder, I manage to maneuver a rumbling mass of metal into the most perilous of parking places.

I am a Joe Louis, or Mohammed Ali, deftly delivering that one-two punch that does the job so beautifully.

In bedroom parlance, I would be considered a Don Juan, a lover of legendary prowess, in this case, slipping my vehicle into the allotted space with the greatest of ease.

Don't confuse me with James Thurber's Walter Mitty, the daffy dreamer. Believe me, I am King of the Parallel Parkers!

Damn!

Now, what did the little woman tell me to get at the store?

Survival Snack

In the food department here lately, I've been making an old-time favorite. I call it Survival Snack. A close associate of mine has another name for it. Basically, it's a salad. Get a nice big bowl and fill it with about a third of lettuce and Rotini pasta, add a bag of California style vegetables, cooked. Then throw in anything that strikes your fancy: seedless grapes, chunks of cheese, slices of apple, whatever. Top it off with your favorite salad dressing.

Quickie Quiz

Okay, here's another little game to keep you mentally alert. Ready? Ok, try to name as many celebrities as you can whose first and last names begin with the same letter.

If you want to, you can even include family members and friends. Here are a few examples to get you off to a good start: Marilyn Monroe, Danny DeVito, Ronald Reagan, Herbert Hoover, Betty Boop, Charlie Chaplin, and Helen Hayes.

How about Nick Nolte, Walt Whitman, and Hubert Humphrey? Or Howard Hughes? Or Mary Magdalene?

Cyber Dreams

Several times in the past, I've told you about my dreams. Well, here's another, and is it a doooozy! No. That's the wrong word. The type of dream I'm going to tell you about sucks. It's a nasty computer virus of the dream world. I wouldn't wish one of these on my worst enemy. I take that back: Yes, I would. It would be a fitting revenge for any slight - real or imagined. OK, are you ready for this?

Cyber-dreams are what I call them. In other words, they are computer-related anxiety dreams. A low-level nightmare is what they really are. Repetition dreams would describe them. Doing the same dreary task over and over and over again. Cutting, copying, pasting. Going from folder to folder, document to document. Maybe trying to finish what you were doing all day long. The tragic French poet Baudelaire would have appreciated the futile irony of such nocturnal nightmares.

Pocket Parks

The Short North Improvement District recently broke ground for a Pocket Park at 625 N. High Street. Named Millay Park, the area will feature a brick seatwall, brick piers, wrought-iron fencing, and innovative landscaping. Steve Thurston, Associate Professor of Ceramics at OSU, is producing blue paver bricks embedded with architectural details for a sidewalk that will meander through the park.

A second Pocket development, called Greenwood Park, just south of Fifth Avenue, will be built this summer.

"Pocket Parks are an exciting addition to the Short North because of the landscaping, seating, and public art," says Tim Wagner, Director of SID.

Festival Fun

Looking forward to the Short North Neighborhood Foundation's Art and Music Festival come Saturday, May 3. The music starts at noon and runs for

12 hours! There will be food and beverage booths featuring Short North restaurant specialty items as well as art and music. Expect continuous music from noon to midnight. Participating groups will include: X-rated Cowboys, Jive Turkeys, Two Cow Garage, The Plaster Saints, Shaun Booker, Teeny Tucker, Dave Chisolm Band, and Donna Magavero. Local and regional artists will be displaying and selling their wares. Call 262-0801 or check out the CD101 calendar at www.cd101.com for more information.

Dis 'n Data

The first of this month North Central Mental Health broke ground for a major addition to their facility at 1301 North High Street.

North Market's Gaelic Imports has a bonanza of good things to eat. If you should be longin' for anything from a Shepherd's Pie to a Mincemeat Tart, this is the place to go. Call 221-0989.

(From the April 2003 issue)

Bag O' Bread

Did you ever get hunger pangs gnawing away at your tummy when you were driving around, but you didn't have the time or inclination to pull into a fast food joint? Sometimes, I just don't want the greasy crap most of these places dish out. So what do I do?

I keep a loaf of bread tucked away on the driver's side floorboard, and when I get hungry, I just reach down, open up the bag and pull out a couple of slices. It's always there, and it's economical.

I'll be the first to admit that this is primitive dining, but it's healthy because I always get bread that is nutritious, like stone ground wheat, bran or rye. There's one brand I like that even has nuts in it.

So, I'll tear a piece in half and happily chew on it as I drive along. If I suddenly have to put both hands on the steering wheel, I might end up with a slice of bread dangling out of the side of my mouth for a few moments. Probably not a pretty sight, but as Willy Loman said, it goes with the territory.

Every now and then, when I stop for a light or maybe find myself in a parking lot, I'll see a hungry-looking crow or robin nearby. Then, like St. Francis of Assisi, I toss some slices of bread out the car window. One time I almost hit a lady pedestrian. She was just walking along and &endash; plop &endash; this slice of rye bread I had thrown came sailing through the air and landed at her feet. I'm lucky she didn't call the cops.

Celebrity Sights

B. Hampton's Cathy Capuano was in the Big Apple for the Grammy Awards, and did she ever meet a lot of famous people! Among them:

• Queen Latifah
• Christian Slater
• Ashley and Wyonna Judd
• Fred Durst, the Limp Bizkit

And, Cathy has the photos to prove she met every one of them!

Packed Pub

One afternoon last month I went into the Short North Tavern to drop off a few papers and I was amazed to find the place jam-packed with attractive women. Then, I heard a voice cry out, "Hey, Tom!"

It was an old friend, a regular patron of the tavern. He was sitting at the bar, and when I walked over to say hello, he said, "What do you think of this?

I said, "Who are all these people?"

He grinned and answered, Tommy, it's a Lesbian Pub Crawl, and from here they're going to Betty's and Mike's.

When I asked him what he was doing there in the Short North Tavern, he grinned and answered. "Tom, sometimes I think I'm a lesbian in a man's body!"

Love Links

What a wonderful wedding it's going to be! Suzanne Patricia Cotton and Joseph Edwin Theibert will be exchanging vows April 26 in the Griswold ballroom of the downtown YWCA. Rick Berunetto's Orchestra will provide music for the reception that follows. Way to go, Joe!

Quickie Quiz

Okay, here's a little quiz to keep you on your toes. This one's about famous literary works with colors in the titles. I'll give you the author's names, you give me the titles.

1. Alice Walker
2. Anthony Burgess
3. Stendhal
4. Edgar Allen Poe
5. Kathleen Winsor

Dis 'n Data

So long to Mary Elliott who resigned her position as Public Relations Director at the Columbus Art Museum. You did a great job while you were here, Mary, and we will miss you. Enjoy California!

Betty's, 680 N. High Street, is now open for breakfast at 5:30 am, seven days a week. And, get this! Starting in June, the popular restaurant will be open 24 hours a day. Awesome!

Hooray for the new Metropark on the zWhittier Street Peninsula! It's been one of my favorite birding places for years.

Looking forward to the Short North Neighborhood Foundation's Art and Music Festival come Saturday, May 3. The music starts at noon and runs for

12 hours! There will be food and beverage booths featuring Short North restaurant specialty items as well as art and music. Call 262-0801 or check out the CD101 calendar at www.cd101.com for more information.

As usual, the Irish Step-Dancers who gave a performance at Zeno's on St. Patrick's Day were sensa-tional! And, believe me, there was a big crowd on hand to enjoy them!

Find out how you can send a goat to a child-led household in Africa by stop-ping in at Four Winds International, importer of home furnishings, 921 N. High Street.

If you want to have a barrel of fun, stop in Yankee Trader at 463 N. High St. They have more novelties and party-related stuff than anybody in town.

&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;

Quiz Answers: (See Questions Above)

1. The Color Purple
2. Clockwork Orange
3. The Red and the Black
4. The Gold Bug
5. Forever Amber

(From the March 2003 issue)

Blond Beer

One day recently I was checking out the incredible variety of beer, ale, and wine at Viking Premium Beverage, located at 237 King Avenue.

All of a sudden, I did a double take. Did I see what I thought I saw?

Dead Guy Ale. I looked again. Yup. That's what it said on the bottle. That's sure a funny name to call a beverage, I thought. I hope it's good!

I started looking at some of the brand names a little more closely.

Oops! What's this?

Wicked Strawberry Blonde Beer?

Wow!

I wonder if you could perch her on your lap?

It seemed my roving eye was now discovering wild and wooly beer and ale appellations on every shelf.

Here's another one: Two Hearted Ale. That ought to go pretty well with that Strawberry Blond hussy.

Oh, no! What's this? Arrogant Bastard! I can't believe it! Who on earth would want to be caught with that in their hand? Well, maybe that dumb blonde.

Here's a bottle of Purple Haze. If I owned a brewery, I don't think I would call my product that. Maybe pink, but purple? Well, there's no accounting for taste.

Surely my eyes are deceiving me! Dirty Dick Beer? "Nuf said on that one. Arrgh!

Here's a funny one. Oatmeal Stout. And all this time I thought oatmeal was a breakfast cereal.

Another funny one: Flying Dog Beer. Have a couple of those and you might bark. Or wag your tail!

Art Park

I've written about this before, but it's worth repeating. A world-class sculpture trail in Goodale Park would make the Short North an international

destination point, and might even put Columbus, Ohio squarely on the map.

The project could be done leisurely, piece-by-piece with civic and corporate funding of all the attendant landscaping, installation of gardens, and contouring of the land.

Another thought! Would it ever be feasible to build a parking garage under Goodale Park?

Bed Head

The bed I sleep on faces to the east. What I mean is it's on an east-west axis. The head of the bed (also my head) is at the west end of this arrangement. (Sometimes these very simple things are hard to explain.) All of this is my inept way of saying that as the world rolls around the sun, my body is in the same axis, and my head is facing toward the east, where thus far, the sun makes its daily appearance.

So, one morning when I had nothing better to think about, I wondered how many people sleep west to east as I do, and how many sleep east to west, north to south, or south to north. And, as we all go whirling around the world together, I wondered if maybe one way was better than the others. More restful? Less gravitational friction? Whatever. Don't lose any sleep over it. I'm not!

Quickie Quiz

Okay, here's a little quiz to keep you on your toes. This one's about famous fictional ships' captains. In other words, name the captain of each of the following scows. For double scores, name the authors. The answers are at the end of this column. Anchors a-weigh!

1. The Pequod
2. The U. S. S. Caine
3. The H. M. S. Bounty
4. The Nautilus
5. The Ghost

Dis 'n Data

Alas! Alack! Brad Sutton's popular DooWac hair salon is closing up shop at King and High and moving to 2573 Indianola Avenue. What's going to happen to all the Ric Borg paintings? Don't ask me! Brad says he's gonna miss the old location, but times, they are a-changin'. One thing will remain the same though. The phone number: 291-4632.

If your pets could talk, they would tell you to get your bones over to Jo Johnson's Posh Pets. They have everything your cat or dog could possibly wish for.

The house on the southeast corner of West Sixth and Forsythe has a beautiful cupola. No, it's more of a minaret. Whatever, it's so groovy!

Randy Tarr's Great Things on High, 689 N. High Street, continues to carry an incredible variety of gifts &endash; including lots of angels, cherubs, and gargoyles.

The crows are back from wherever they went for the winter. And, they're as smart and sassy as ever!

Donna Silverman called recently and shared some old memories of the times she and Emerson Burkhart celebrated their birthdays. Donna is on January 27 and Burkhart's on the 30th. Donna said Emerson would take her out to lunch or dinner to celebrate, places like Benny Kleins, and Doersam's. Those were the good old days!

Quiz Answers (See Questions Above)

1. Captain Ahab (Herman Melville)
2. Captain Queeg (Herman Wouk)
3. Captain Bligh (Nordhoff / Hall)
4. Captain Nemo (Jules Verne)
5. Wolf Larson (Jack London)

(From the Feb. '03 issue)

Tootsie Trouble

One of my cherished and long-standing habits is running around my apartment in my stocking feet. "Born free!" That's what my toes sing in my honor, until &endash; Yipes! Oh, Lord! Ooooowww!

For the thousandth time I have just rammed one of my poor footsies into a chair or table leg. Oh! It's still hurting. Hopping about on one foot, I wonder if I've broken a toe. Probably not, but even if I did, there's nothing I can do about it. You can't put a splint on a broken toe. All you can do is grunt and groan and wobble around like a ruptured duck. Quack! Quack!

Oh sure, friends and family tell me to wear slippers. Well, let them wear their slippers. For me, I'll go on leading the dangerous life. Like a tiger stalking through a jungle of unexpected dangers, I'll take my chances.

My tootsies aren't as straight as West Point Cadets, but who cares? Like Elsie the lioness, they were born free, and they're eternally thankful. Owww! There I go again.

You know, one of these days they're going to turn on me!

Tasty Treat

A month or so back, I mentioned the terrific southwest chicken sandwiches at the new Cameron Mitchell Bread Company in the North Market. Sorry folks, no more sandwiches at that location. Seems like they didn't give 'em a fair try, huh? Anyway, their bad luck inspired me to make my own.

They're even better than the ones I'm talking about. Open faced &endash; and dee-licious! Here are the ingredients: sliced chicken breast, any wide loaf of bread (shepherd's loaf, for instance), Heinz' horseradish sauce, a dash of salsa, a bit of minced onion, and slices of avocado. All of this topped with Velveeta Mexican cheese. Pop into the toaster oven and prepare to be blessed!

Last Leap

In September 2002, the Gazette published a lovely poem titled "Portrait" by 90-year-old Laura Hank Hilton. In mid-December, my editor and I visited Laura at Lincoln Lodge Retirement Residence with news that we were going to publish another of her poems, "One Last Leap," in our January 2003 issue.

Margaret and I enjoyed our visit with Laura immensely. She was perky as a schoolgirl and regaled us with one interesting story after another.

Laura Hank Hilton was a native of Jackson, Ohio. Her first book of poetry was published when she was twelve years old. Subsequently, her works were widely published, and in high school, she won a prestigious prize in an Atlantic Monthly essay contest.

This past year, she was actively coordinating poetry and writing groups that were well attended, including one at a neighborhood library and another at her retirement residence.

Laura attended Ohio University in Athens, and obtained a B.A. degree in sociology and psychology at Concord College in West Virginia.

She taught at the State Industrial School for Girls in Delaware, Ohio, and later was a member of the Columbus Police Force. Laura returned to her Appalachian roots when she worked at the Women's Federal Prison in West Virginia, which housed such notables as Tokyo Rose and Axis Sally.

You can imagine our disappointment when we discovered that Laura was in critical condition at Mt. Carmel West when last month's paper came out. A few days later, on January 9, she passed away without ever seeing her last published work. It was titled "One Last Leap."

Coloring Kids

Under the direction of Spanish teacher Maria Phillips and art teacher Roxanne Holonitch, fourth graders at St. Joseph Montessori School researched, wrote, designed, and created seven different coloring books for children in Honduras. They are sending them 200 copies, according to Christy Clark, in addition to a hundred boxes of crayons &endash; just in case the local supply is low.

The school was established in 1968 and offers and educational program for children starting at age three and continuing through the eighth grade. SJMS is open to children of all faiths. Pre-school classes are conducted at 1077 N. High Street in the Short North. For information, call 777-7349.

Dis 'n Data

Am I getting old, cranky, unwilling to accept new ideas? I don't think so, even though I hate the new plastic dairy creamer containers with a passion. Give me back the neat little cardboard jobs.

Something's going on at the Thirsty Ear darn near every night, according to personable bartender Amy Ankrum. Especially fun is the Acoustic Open Stage every Wednesday night. And, I just recently discovered that the expression "Thirsty Ear" is in a poem by Emily Dickinson.

Who would ever think somebody would rob an art gallery and sneak away with armloads of paintings? Well, that's what some dumb dolts did at Studio 16, 431 West Third Avenue. Not only that, the thieves made off with a bunch of cold cuts and beverages that were on hand for a grand opening party. Co-owners Doug Fordyce and David Jones advise: If someone knocks on your door with a painting to sell, don't buy it! If you'd like to make a donation to help the guys regroup, you can do it at Betty's, 680 N. High Street.

One night last month our pal Joe Thiebert took a nasty fall on the ice that laid him up for about a month with a broken hip and a lot of wear and tear. I'm happy to say, he's home now and doing real well. Joe has about a million friends and, not only that, he's a Great American! Mend those bones, Joe. Don't forget you're supposed to get married in a couple of months!

Amiable Kenny Thompson of New Castle, England, made his second visit to the USA this winter to visit his son, Darren Thompson, an accomplished restorer of furniture. It didn't take Kenny long to discover that Zeno's isn't all that different from some of the cozy pubs back home. Good luck, Kenny, and come back to visit us again!

We archive darn near everything we print in the Gazette on our Web site. You'll find it at www.shortnorth.com. Don't forget to put a bookmark on it!

(From the Jan. 2003 issue)

Pack Rat

The eternal question: Pack rat or kangaroo with a small pouch? Advice on the subject is profuse. A famous person who should have known said, "Travel light." I forget who said that, Mark Twain or Osama bin Laden?

The problem is that even when you cast a judicious eye on, say, a piece of bric-a-brac, the urge to save it is dominant over the impulse to pitch it.

You know the feeling. We all do. And most of us are guilty of hanging onto useless and worthless stuff that just gathers dust or takes up all kinds of

space in our closets, basements, attics, boudoirs and bathrooms.

One of the most common alibis for this kind of possessive mania goes something like this: "If I keep it long enough, it'll be worth a lot of money. Look at the guys that kept the early editions of Superman Comics! And how about baseball cards? Or, surf around ebay and see all the guys that are cleaning up on this stuff. So will a roll of pennies be worth something if you keep them a thousand years?

The temptation to hang onto darn near every possession you own is especially strong when it comes to old clothing and favorite shoes. I'm sure that most of us have a thing about our seldom-if-ever worn old duds. Take my navy uniform, for instance. You'd have to strap me on the rack before I'd part with it. How about old tuxedoes, bridal gowns, favorite sport coats?

Trying to preserve one's own personal history plays a big role in all this. We never throw away legal records, ancient letters, old greeting cards, paid bills, newspaper clippings, and photographs of long-dead relatives - until our dresser drawers are overflowing - all in a desperate bid to halt the passage of time.

Add to the general melee, broken drugstore glasses, old combs with missing teeth, your kid's toys, keys for unremembered locks, prescriptions from the '70s, broken tools, old cans of paint.

I left books for last. They're a category unto themselves. Books! Books! Books! Tell me about it! They're in every room of my humble abode, overflowing from bookcases. But there is one great redeeming feature about hanging onto your books. (I didn't say your looks, but that's important, too) It's this: If a dog is man's best friend, a book can't be far behind - and they have tales, even though they can't wag them!

Postal Praise

Every once in a while I hear someone knock the U. S. Postal System and I try to set them straight. Here's what I tell them. For a lousy thirty-seven cents I can send a letter from Columbus, Ohio, to Anchorage, Alaska, and have it hand-delivered to the door.

Oh, sure, the system isn't perfect, but what is? Sometimes I get steamed up when my letter carrier is hours late. But, here's my question. I wonder how much a private company would charge to deliver my letter to Alaska? Maybe five dollars? And I'd probably have to be home to receive a letter and not have a little pink slip hanging on my door.

Crow Collapse

Where have all the crows gone? "Long time passing." I have heard or seen precious few of these boisterous critters for three or four months. Normally, they don't migrate, but they do gather together in big roosts at certain times of the year. A big flock of crows is called a murder of crows. But I'll betcha don't know what you call a bunch of crows that stick together. Give up? You call them vel-crows!

Famous Folks

Recently I got to thinking about some of the famous people who hail from Columbus. So I did a little research and here's the list I came up with.

• George Bellows, artist • Billy Southworth, baseball great • Eddie Rickenbacker, World War I ace • Elsie Janis, actress • Milton Caniff, cartoonist • Curtis LeMay, U.S. Air Force Chief of Staff • Emerson Burkhart, artist • Eileen Heckhart, actress • Ted Lewis, entertainer •Al G. Fields, minstrel • Ruth McKenney, playwright • Joel Sayre, writer • Jean Peters, actress • Warner Baxter, actor • Katherine Campbell, only two-time winner of Miss America crown • Grant Mitchell, film star • Herkie Styles, comic • James Thurber, humorist • Jon Whitcomb, Illustrator • Bob Newhart, humorist • Mauri Rose, auto racer • Roy Doty, cartoonist • Howard Thurston, magician •

Many others, no doubt. If you can think of someone, let me know. And, hopefully, there are a few in the making!

Car Care

With winter upon us, here are some tips to keep your jalopy in good running order:

¸ Get a tune-up
¸ Check your anti-freeze
¸ Change your wiper blades, if needed
¸ Make sure your defrosters are working properly
¸ Check your battery
¸ Check your tires
If taking a trip, it's not a bad idea to have a shovel, a de-icer, flares, flash-light, maps, extra gloves, blankets, and maybe a cell-phone aboard!

Dis 'n Data

SNBA Holiday Window Display Winners: Best Overall, Orbit Design. Best Theme: Urban Gardener. Most Entertaining: Torso. Best Holiday: Columbus Eyeworks and, finally, Best Bar/Restaurant: Betty's.

A new name at the old K2U location. More about that later.

Beautiful ambiance and peaceful would be a good beginning in describing the new Zen Cha Tea Salon at 982 North High Street Many kinds of tea, international and domestic, are yours to choose from. Also a daily dessert special.

Roadhouse Annie's opened up again last month, spruced up and good as new.

Cathy Capuano says B. Hampton's will soon have a new menu, probably by the time you read this.

And remember, eagles may soar, but weasels don't get sucked into jet engines.
Have a great New Year!

Quickie Quiz

Okay, here's a little quiz to keep you on your toes. This one's about famous fictional ships' captains. In other words, name the captain of each of the following scows. For double scores, name the authors. The answers are on page 12. Anchors a-weigh!

• The Pequod.
The U. S. S. Caine
• The H. M. S. Bounty
• The Nautilus
• The Ghost.

(from the Dec. '02 issue)

Dungaree Data

How many pairs of jeans is it normal for one fellow to own? Your guess is as good as mine, but a lady friend who was nosing around in the sanctity of my walk-in closet started counting a stack of newly washed, neatly folded blue jeans. Her eagle eye soon spotted several more pairs of dirty disheveled ones crammed on top of the laundry basket, and then she started counting.

Well, guess how many there were altogether? Clean and dirty. Eight? Ten? Twelve? You're getting close! Actually, there were 17 pairs, but a couple of those were cut-offs, so they should only count half as much. All right, all right, 17 pairs. Now, I ask you, is that an unreasonable number?

Some of them I almost never wear unless I have no other choice. They're the ones that are too baggy or so tight I can't even squeeze into them anymore. You know how it is. Those good folks out there on the Asiatic rim don't have the same system of numbering that we do. Either that or their bodies are made differently.

I mentioned the baggy ones, the sloppy, floppy ones. These are the pants that slither slowly down my backside until I give them another testy tug after which they slowly slither again and again. Well, if there are people out there who like that style, that's their problem. Me? I like the tight fit, streamlined ones (especially on women).

Anyway, what I'm trying to say is that I have my favorite ones, the ones that don't fall off or cut my circulation, and I wear those most of the time. That's about 11 pairs of jeans. Oops!

I forgot the ones I'm wearing. Make that 12. The others are there for that dreaded morning when my laundry holds 12 pairs of dirty dungarees &endash; and my last pair of underwear. Well, am I a jean jockey? Tell me I'm not. I'm sure the fine folks over at Target would say I'm okay with this.

Holiday Hop

What a happy time the December 7 Holiday Hop holds in store for those attending: Live music on the street corners, performers and vendors on the sidewalks, free photo-ops with Santa (Bring a toy or donate $5).

There will be free carriage rides around Goodale Park from 6:00 to 10:00 pm. Enjoy the beautifully decorated windows of the shops and galleries. And, as always, lots of good art to admire and good food to enjoy. And, wow, don't forget those arches!

Goodale Gala

The annual Friends of Goodale Park Holiday Gala will be held in what may be the largest house in Victorian Village!

Jim Schmelzer and Donna Byrom are hosting the gala in their beautiful home at 839 Neil Avenue. The house includes a theatre room, a game room with a pool table, and a grand piano which will be put to good use by pianist Jeff Hamm. Hors d'oeuvres, dessert, live music, door prizes and Village company are yours for $30 per person. Tickets can be purchased at the door Wednesday, December 11 from 6:00 to 8:30 pm. Everyone is welcome. Proceeds help preserve the beauty of gorgeous Goodale Park as well as finance projects like the recent Shelterhouse renovation. This year effort will be directed toward installation of a new fountain. Call 457-0929.

Art Alert

Columbus College of Art & Design's Annual Holiday Student Art Sale will offer the works of over 100 talented students. Unique paintings, drawings, photography, sculpture, prints, handmade paper, jewelry, and ceramic works should provide plenty of opportunity to make a dent in your holiday gift shopping. There is a $10 admission fee for the first hour (9-10 am) on Saturday, December 14 in the Canzani Center, at Cleveland Avenue and E. Gay Street. The sale ends at 2 pm. Proceeds benefit the CCAD Endowed Student Scholarship Fund. Call 224-9101.

In Grandview, Glass Axis will be holding its annual Holiday Glass Sale featuring work from local artists, demon-strations, and refreshments, beginning on Friday, December 15 from 5-9 pm and December 16 and 17 from 10 am &endash; 6 pm. Glass Axis is located at 1341B Norton Avenue, between 3rd and 5th. Call 228-4011 for more information.

Also remember that over 400 artists from across the nation will show juried work of original fine craft in every imaginable media, traditional and contemporary, at the Columbus Winter-fair held at the Ohio State Fairgrounds Bricker Multi-Purpose Building from Thursday, December 5 thru Sunday, December 8. The show will open every day at 11 am, except Sunday at noon. The Winterfair is brought to you by the Ohio Designer Craftsmen. For information, visit www.ohiocraft.org or call 486-7119.

Museum Mutts

If you don't treat yourself to anything else the rest of the year, at least do yourself this one favor and go see "A Thousand Hounds," at the Columbus Museum of Art.

Liz James wrote all about this sensational show in the November issue of the Gazette. One of the dogs was on our front cover.

This exhibit of many photographs featuring dogs from around the world, from many different eras, by many photographers, is really something to howl about. It's a real tail wager! It's ha-ha funny. It's boo-hoo sad. You'll fall all over yourself laughing and gasping in surprise. You'll bark your approval!

You'll even meet Andy Warhol and James Dean (with their dogs), among lots of other celebrities.

Take your kids, take your grandmother. Even if you're a cat lover, you'll say this show is the cat's meow.

Eyeglass Gift

Image Optical, 846 North High Street, operated by Dr. Todd Clark, will donate one pair of eyeglass frames to The Childhood League Center for every pair sold in their shop in December. The Childhood League was founded in 1945 to serve kids under the age of six with developmental delays and their families. A good pair of glasses for a good cause - that's what I like to see!

Dis 'n Data

Those Southwestern Chicken Panni sandwiches at the Cameron Mitchell Bread Company are really super!

A stretch limo pulled up in front of Jo Johnson's Posh Pets last Gallery Hop and a dozen fancy dogs hopped out! They went into the new digs to see what was what. Of course, they were on leashes!

Monkey's Retreat has retreated further north to 1202 N. High. Artist Chas Krider will be there signing his new book Motel Fetish, published by TASCHEN, December Hop night from 6- 11 pm.

Randy Tarr's Great Things on High continues to carry an incredible variety of gifts &endash; including lots of angels, cherubs, and gargoyles. More Christmas ideas: Yankee Trader is the perfect place to go for stocking stuffers.

Better Earth, located in the North market, has a unique selection of miniature Alaskan masks. Made of caribou skin. The Nunamiut Eskimo artifacts have been handcrafted by Lela Ahgook, one of the master mask makers in her village!

Happy Holidays!

(From the Nov. '02 issue)

Walky-Talky

More and more often I see people walking down the street busily talking to themselves, oblivious to the rest of the world. There seems to be no disparity between the sexes; sometimes it's a man, sometimes a woman. And these poor souls that find themselves so interesting that they can't refrain from talking to themselves come in all ages. The other day at the super-market, a woman was so busy blabbing to herself she almost ran into my cart - and she wasn't on a cell phone either.

Now, I admit to talking to myself once in a while when I'm alone, but it's never more than a word or two. Let's face it, I'm not that interesting - and I already know what I'm going to say. Oh, I'll cuss up a storm and let loose with a few choice words when I crack my knee or elbow on the old jalopy, but that's about the extent of it. What really concerns me: Is all this self-talk symptomatic of some greater malaise? Are these people retreating into themselves so much that they have lost connection with the outside world?

I just thought of another explanation. These hapless people are cell-phone users who have suffered the unthinkable. They have been deprived of their precious little chatterbox. Sob! Maybe they carelessly left it at home. Maybe they didn't pay their phone bill and were mercilessly cut off. Oh, Lord, what a fate!

Well, don't expect a passing smile or cheerful greeting from these busy folks. They've got more important matters in mind - and anyway, they can't see you!

BIV Board

ROY G BIV Director Melody Worsley recently announced the names of new board members: Matt Berry, David Charlowe, Jim Coleman, Jillian Farley, Jami Goldstein, Erica Hardesty, Kojo Kamau, Ric Petry, Judith Politi, Todd Rensi, Ben Rupp, Amy Thompson, Barbara Vogel, and Teresa Weidenbusch.

Space to Share

The office building at 27 Russell Street in the Short North was once a church, and like the charitable inhabitants of old, owner Jay Cheplowitz has decided to open his doors to the needy - in this case, needy artists. What he is proposing is to make portions of the common areas (and possibly vacant offices) in the building available to artists for exhibiting their work during Gallery Hops. He says the idea came to him only recently (as if from the heavens above), so the details are somewhat cloudy, but he would be delighted to discuss the possibilities with interested individuals. Jay can be reached at 464-4000 or by email at jay@Metro-Rentals.com

Spirit of '60s

Folk singer Bill Cohen's sentiment for the '60s has been strummin' strong since the 1980s. For the 17th year, Cohen will present a '60s show to hallmark this turbulent era. The Spirit of the Sixties Candlelit Coffeehouse will include live folksongs of poetic music-masters such as Peter, Paul & Mary, Dylan, Ochs, Mitchell and more. News of major events, memories of civil rights sit-ins, anti-war activists, and space flights will be reported. Trivia questions with prizes, fashion statements, and a display of historical relics will be there. A $10 donation benefits the Mid-Ohio Food Bank. Held Friday November 8 from 7:30 to 10:30 pm in the King Avenue Methodist Church, 299 W. King Avenue & Neil. Free parking, refreshments. Call 263-3851 for more. Send a letter describing your experience at the Cohen concert and we'll try to print it in the Gazette. Love to hear about it!

Evening Event

Over 25 local talented artists and some performers will share their creativity with the public during an evening fundraiser to be held at the Smith Brothers Building, 580 North Fourth Street on Saturday, November 9.

"Beyond the Canvas: An Evening of Art and Song" was a huge success last year, according to Paula Katz of Camp Sunrise. The Second Annual event has been expanded and partial proceeds from sales will once again be used to benefit Camp Sunrise and Project OpenHand, organizations helping those affected by HIV and AIDS. Tickets are $15 in advance or $20 at the door. Call 297-8404 or 298-8334 for more information.

Tasty Snacks

Last month I mentioned how I love refrigerator food! I went on to describe several of my favorite chips and dips. Here are a couple of other items I like.

• Small-curd cottage cheese with honey poured over it. For a real burst of energy, cut a banana up on top of the cottage cheese, then pour on the honey.

• In a salad bowl, I put in all the usual greens, add some small chunks of Monterey Jack cheese, scatter some chopped date bits around, add some halved seedless grapes a few cucumber slices, if you desire. Chopped nuts are good, too. Then I scoop out a nest in the center of the bowl and dump in a can of rinsed canned beet slices. Over the beets, I pour a little maple syrup. Finally, tomato quarters (canned or fresh) go around the edges. If you want to make a meal of it, slice some tender chicken breast on top of the whole thing!

• Or, how about this? Instant oatmeal, sliced bananas, vanilla yogurt on top.

Busy Builders

Joe Armeni recently reminded us that for the first time in 80 years, new construction is taking place east of Summit Street and north of East First Avenue. Projects include condos and single-family homes. The units are being built and developed by The New Victorians, a Short North Developer for over 20 years. Marketing is by Armeni's Company, ReMax City Center, realtors.

Deli Delight

Spinelli's Deli has taken over the former Manhattan Bagel spot over by Big Bear on Neil Avenue. Owners Joe Spinelli and Bill Ward opted out of franchiseland in favor of sweet and innovative independence. The new eatery features Deli-style sandwiches, including "Village Veggie" and "Beefy Buttles Avenue," hearty soup, sweet muffins, and more. They're hanging onto the bagels with all the flavored cream cheese goodies! In support of neighborhood artists, an entire wall will be used to exhibit local works.

Lit Bits

I recently came across an old copy of Dag Hammarskjold's Markings, a book of remarkable insight and inspiration.

The book was published in 1964 after the author's death in a 1961 airplane crash in Northern Rhodesia, while flying there to negotiate a cease-fire between United Nations and Katanga forces. He was Secretary-General of the UN.

Markings is a very beautifully written account of Hammarskjold's spiritual journey through life. He once described the manuscript as a "sort of white book concerning my negotiations with myself and with God." Reading the book is like reaching out and touching the soul of this sensitive and intellectual man.

Here are some excerpts:

Be grateful as your deeds become less and less associated with your name, as your feet ever more lightly tread the earth.

There is a profound casual relation between the height of a man's ambition and the depth of his possible fall.

Acts of violence - Whether on a large or small scale, the bitter paradox: the meaningfulness of death - and the meaninglessness of killing.

Is life so wretched? Isn't it rather your hands which are too small, your vision which is muddied? You are the one who must grow up.

What gives life its value you can find - and lose. But never possess. This holds good above all for "the Truth about Life."

Dis 'n' Data

Construction of the retail cap over I-670 will be completed by the spring of 2004. If developer John "Jack" Lucks, Jr. has his way, the ambitious project will have a Union Station motif. The city's picturesque train station was once located nearby.

Many of you will remember Tina Morgan. The latest news is that this talented artist is happily ensconced in Savannah, Georgia. What a beautiful place for an artist to live!

Jo Johnson has opened Posh Pets at 743 N. High Street (where Leaves of Grass used to be). This place will have your pet poodle or kitty standing on their tails. For more info, call 299-pets, or go to their informative and interesting Web site at: postpets@columbus.rr.com

What used to be Dagwoodz is now Bollo Bar and Pizzeria, according to owners Kevin and Lori Ames. Specialty will be thin-crust pizza, along with lasagna, subs, and other pasta dishes.

For the first time, Frezno's will be serving lunch and dinner on Sundays.

Recently, I sent a copy of the Gazette to J. D. Salinger, author of The Catcher in the Rye. As I mentioned in this column about a year ago, I had read two books about him, one by a former girlfriend, one by his daughter. I didn't have his address (nobody does), so I just mailed it to Cornish, New Hampshire. About a week later, I got it back. Of course. Crazy me.

(From the October, 2002 issue)

Points of View

I believe it was the ancient Greek philosopher Heraclitus who pro-claimed that almost everything in the world has its opposite. Boy, oh boy, was this ol' guy ever right! Hot and cold, up and down, love and hate. You know, all that kind of stuff.

I can extend his theory even further. Take tow trucks and tow truck drivers. With this example, you can love or hate the very same objects or persons - depending upon the circumstances.

If you're car breaks down and you're stranded, no matter where - your drive-way at home or somewhere miles out of town - the sight of an approaching tow truck is like watching Gabriel descending from Heaven.

Halleluiah! What a lovely sight that quaint, unlikely looking vehicle is. And what a prince of a guy the tow truck driver is, salt of the earth! Bless him, and may all his days on earth be happy ones.

Not long ago my car was uncere-moniously towed away (in my absence of a few minutes) to an impounding lot. When I came looking for my faithful ol' jalopy, it was gone. This, my friends, is a bad feeling! I now know full well the sentiment that prevailed in the old West when a man's horse was stolen.

And what of the tow trucks? Those wretched looking abominations should be banned from the streets! The drivers? They are predators, piranhas and pirates. How about scumbags and gangsters for good measure?

Now, I will grant you that there are some occasions when a car deserves to be towed. One case is when a business proprietor has a parking lot solely for the use of his customers, and it's promi-nently posted. Or at parking meters and "no parking zones" where folks ignore the posted warnings. However, it is quite common for folks to misinterpret some of these directions. Witness the frequent letters to the press from irate visitors and citizens alike.

Well, thank goodness I got that off my chest. Hi Ho Silver and away!

 

Dip Tips

Love refrigerator food! Fast food to feed the face. Dips and chips of various kinds are high on every-body's list of favorite munchies. Here are some of my favorites:

• Non-fat cream cheese with a dash of salsa slathered on a Graham cracker.

• Peanut butter mixed with honey on a graham cracker. Add a slice of banana and you've got the beginnings of a meal &endash; a dollop of ice cream; you've got a dessert.

• When the big avocados are in season, I make guacamole. I mash the avocado, then add salsa and vanilla yogurt.

• A perennial favorite is salmon or tuna salad. I make it with finely chopped onion, celery and vanilla yogurt Some-times I add a dash of salsa.

• About the Graham crackers. A few years ago, I rediscovered the joy of these crisp, tasty treats. Now I've grown to love them. They're low in sodium and high in nutrients. Delicious and nutritious!

 

Music and More

The Short North Performing Arts Association, which brings Chamber and Folk music to the Short North, as well as offering music programs for inner city youth, needs your support! The Elevator Brewery & Draught Haus, 161 N. High Street will be hosting the Second Annual SNPA Fundraiser on Sunday, October 27 from 2 to 5:15 pm. Look for an art auction of umbrella art - of all things! The MORE Choir (Musical Opportunities For Every-one), will be singing for your support. Trio Europa, featuring Richard Lopez will also perform. Call 228-0500 for more info.

 

Annual Arts Award

Roman Johnson and Mimi Chenfeld will be honored with the 2002 Arts Freedom Award given by the South Side Settlement House during a celebration on Saturday, October 19 at 7 pm in the Canzani Center of CCAD.

The career of nationally acclaimed artist Roman Johnson has spanned over 60 years. Four large oils on canvas, including a portrait of his brother, will be available for purchase, and one of his works will be auctioned to benefit the Settlement Endow-ment Fund. In addition, a silent auction of works by Robert Eickholt, Roger Williams, Smoky Brown, John Behling and others will be offered.

Mimi Chenfeld has been a model of inspiration to hundreds of creative people through her poetry, dance, teaching and advocacy and is well-suited to receive this award embracing "the power of the arts

to affect the human condition while promoting the social good."

All proceeds will benefit the Settlement House, supporting their economic and social programs for children, families and neighborhood development. Tickets are $100 for Sponsors, $250 for Patrons. Consideration will be given to others wishing to attend. For more information regarding the awards ceremony and recep-tion, call David Hetzler at 444-9868.

 

Dining Donations

Project OpenHand invites everyone to DINE OUT for a great cause. Enjoy a meal at participating restaurants on Thursday, October 17 and a portion of the proceeds will be used to meet the nutrition needs of persons living with HIV and AIDS. Some generous neighborhood restaurants that you might be interested in patronizing are Betty's Fine Food & Spirits, 680 N. High; Elevator Brewery and Draught House, 161 N. High; K2U Bar and Grill, 641 N. High, R.J. Snapper's, 700 N, High; Strada World Cuisine (lunch), 106 W. Vine; Tapatio, 491 N. Park; Union Station Video Café, 630 N. High and Wild Oats, 1555 W. Lane.

For a complete list of participating restaurants email pohc@aol.com or visit their web site at www.projectopenhand-columbus.org or call 298-8334.

 

St. Mark Music

The Illuminati Ensemble of The Columbus Gay Men's Chorus will sing in celebration of National Coming Out Day at St. Mark Lutheran Church during worship on Sunday, October 13 at 10:30 am. St Mark Church, located at 95 West Fifth Avenue, is a "Reconciling in Christ" congregation that is engaged in ministry inclusive of GLBT people. Call Pastor Gene Talley at 299-2514.

 

Goblin's Garb

How about an authentic Oddfellows robe for a Halloween costume? Or an orange-and-black "No Trespassing" sign for the curmudgeon in you? You'll find these at Antiques and Eccentricities, 190 W. 2nd Avenue. The purple velvet Independent Order of Oddfellows robe comes with certificates of membership dated 1915 and 1916. Yellow cording, a dickey of curious checkerboard colors, floral and fleur-de-lis patterns; it's a cos-tume that will not be duplicated! Look for the illuminated pumpkins in A&E's windows. Or call to order at 294-3159.

 

Wish List

Here's a wish list of businesses I would like to see located in the Short
North. Jim Hill and I were talking about this recently, and some of the ideas are his.

• A good used bookwstore

• A Chicago-style deli

• A magazine and newspaper store

• An old-fashioned hardware store

• A business supply store

• A traditional Italian restaurant

• A Starbuck's coffee shop

Just kidding about that last one, folks. But, seriously, if you have any suggestions, let us know.

 

Dis 'n' Data

Losing a parent is one of the tough rites of passage most of us go through. Here recently, our columnist Elizabeth Ann James had to say goodbye to her 90-year-old mother, Elizabeth Porter; and Dick Allen, of Zeno's, recently lost his mother, Lucille Allen. She was 89.

Starting at 7 pm on Hop Night this month, John Morgan will be strummin' his guitar at Four Winds, 921 N. High St. Stop in and take a listen, and while you're there, take a gander at the gorgeous furniture and accessories.

Ooops! Scully's beautiful new sign is 30 inches wide, not 30 feet wide as I reported last month.

Welcome to Zen Cha Tea Salon at 982 North High Street, joining two other oriental destinations in the Short North: Lemongrass and haiku.

We're blessed with two wonderful glass galleries in the Short North. The Thomas Riley Gallery, at 642 N. High Street, is like a museum full of incredi-bly beautiful art objects, which could be in your home or office. The Cameo Gallery, at 772 North High Street, is slightly smaller, but has a fantastic display of dazzling glass art to admire.

Speaking of things beautiful, the fish in the saltwater tank at B. Hampton's are out of this world, mysterious. awe-inspiring. Still more - things beautiful, that is, the paintings of Doug Fordyce at Michael Orr Gallery last month.

What a shame Newsworthy, the out-of-town newspaper and periodical store over in Grandview went belly-up. I woulda thought there were enough literati in the Tri-Village area to have kept it alive. Guess not.

Try the Cheese Raviolis at bustlin' Betty's Restaurant. They're made with homemade pesto, artichoke hearts, red onions, and mushrooms. Love 'em!

Author Nancy Zafris lives right here in the Short North area, and she just had a new book published. The title: The Metal Shredders. More later.

My friend Tim Middleditch is on the mend after taking a nasty fall at home. Hang in there fella!

So many great projects in and around the Short North to look forward to: The arches, the end of the construction of I-670, the Cap, the Campus Partners project, Concorde, the Jeffries project, etc., etc.

Until next time, enjoy the fall weather and, if you get the chance, turn over a new leaf.

 

 

(From the Sept. '02 issue)

Passing Parade

For the record, here's a list of enterprises in the Short North area that have gone out of business for one reason or another during my watch:

Lost Planet, Lava Java, C. Sneary Gallery, The Living Room, Daglio Tailoring, Poorboy's Antique Furniture, Columbus Business Machine Co., Planet Pet, Simply Suzanne's, Morbitzer's Deli, Transformations, Lanning Gallery, Basso Bean, Waterbeds and Stuff, Mauritz Gallery, Nonni's, Flying Fish, King Ave. Coffeehouse, Artful Gardener, Major Chord, Creative A Tee, Monkey's Uncle, Purple Haza, Hot Stuff Antiques, Short North Floral Co., and Chelsie's.

Modern Object, Ordinary Mysteries, Sakkara, Portraits by Jeni, Vintage Vogue, Putt'n on the Dog, Walter Paul, Inc., Fioriware Pottery, Candle Gallery, Delicacies Bakery, Ritchey's, Bermuda Onion, Maxwell Gallery, C & C Bike Shop, Vivid Woman's Apparel, Ohio Ethnographic Gallery, Six and Eights, Still Waters, Augies, M. J. Originals, Short North Pole, Jewelry Studio, 700 Club, Floral Originals, All the Rage, Patrick's, Workbench, Bicycle Hub, Joy Nesson's, Avant Garde, Import Doctor, Noodles, Moda Véritié, the Blue Cat, Cameron & Hyde, Antony for Men, Gianni for Men, and Costello's.

Victorian Village Deli, Danlyn Galleries, Leaves of Grass, Wallich Gallery, Niccolae Gallery, Short North Natural Foods, Raffensberger Gallery, Kenny's Pawn Shop, 972 Gallery, Aardvark Video, Matreoshk, a Russian

Tea Room, Fergus-Jean Gallery, Spirit Gallery, Artreach, Spangler Cummings Gallery, Hand Motion, Ace Gallery, and Valerian's Bistro au Vin.Augie's Pellington Gallery, Geoffrey Taber Gallery, Figaro, Health and Leisure Mart, First Impressions Printing, Dino Anderson's Dance Studio, UNICEF, Planet Studio, Ambrosia, Pane Bakery, Lollapalooza, Balloons on High, Maxx'd-Out, Jordanica, Roberta Kuhn Gallery, Groove Shack, Abraxas Studios, Sally Windell's, and Katz and Dawgs.

Terrestrial Treasures, Bellissimo Flowers, Bella Gallery, Destiny-Garner Gallery, Le Petite Fleur, Obetz Gallery, Stuart Pimsler Dance Studio, Cardinal Imprints, Benjamin Marcus Gallery, Stoneman Gallery, Silver Shadow Gallery, Treasures From Abroad, Box Lunch, D.J. Prophet's Pub, O'Brien's Deli, Tea 'n Things, Garnish, J. Crandol's Gallery, Reggae Cuisine, Luna Coffee House, Vagabond, Skankland, Windows in Your Mind, Legends Gallery, Ruppert's Gourmet Foods, and Never Ending Bookstore.

A lot of dreams here, all gone a-glimmering. A lot of bubbles burst. The reasons are as diverse as human nature is diverse. Death and sickness have taken their toll. Quitting while ahead figures in the equation. Going on to another opportunity or venue is another. Under- financing and inexperience in marketing have brought quite a few down. And, there might be some questions here for shark landlords that only they can answer.

As you might have noticed, I moan and groan all the time about what a great place downtown used to be. The difference is that all of that was demolished, laid waste for corporate cubicles and parking lots. Because of the revolving door, a lot of great new places keep popping up in the Short North. We just keep chuggin' along, doin' our thing, hopin' for the best!

 

Scully's Sign

The new sign adorning the front of Skully's is awesome. It took a year to design and build and weighs twenty-five hundred pounds. It projects 12' from the building and is 30' wide. Neon light colors are red, white, and yellow against a blue background. It took a few meetings with the Victorian Village Commission to get all the details worked out for approval. All this inside information comes straight from Skully Webb and his attractive wife, Michele.

 

Tour Time

The 28th Annual Home and Garden Tour of the Victorian Village Society will be held Sunday, September 15 from 10 am to 6 pm. "City Style" is the tour theme, celebrating the urban neighbor-hood setting. A dozen structures will be open for scrutiny. Glamorous gardens will also be accessible to strolling admirers. Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 on tour day. A Goodale Park festival will be held on Sunday, featuring music and art and ice cream. Two preview events are scheduled for Saturday. Call 228-2912 for tickets and information.

 

Lit Bits

Donald Culross Peattie surely ranks among America's great nature writers. His most famous book was titled An Almanac for Moderns, but another that I especially valued was Flowering Earth, a veritable treasure trove of wisdom and inspiration.

Interesting enough, the author had a Columbus connection. His brother was Dr. Roderick Peattie, one-time chairman of the Geography Department at OSU, who lived on Perry Street with his family. Dr. Peattie's kids, by the way, were companions and classmates of my brother David at the old University School, which was in the building that still stands at Woodruff and High. Small world, huh?

Flowering Earth is truly a glistening jewel in my pantheon of books. Here are several excerpts:

 

True that a plant may not think; neither will the profoundest of men ever put forth a flower.

And, how about these thoughts?:

Of our windows on the universe, science is set with the clearest pane; it is not warped or waved to make the images appear to support any dogma; the glass is not rose-tinted, neither is it leaded with a picture that shuts out the sun and, coming between the light of day and you, enforces the credence of the past upon the young present.

One half, the green half, of all this living, gives no tongue save to the walking wind. It is that earthly paradise, that clean temple, where no wrong is ever done.

The Green Kingdom embraces our restless one, is nurse to it and grave to it.

And, lest I be stoned to death, I dare not forget to mention that Mr. Peattie's wife, Louise Redfield Peattie, was an accomplished author herself. One of her fine books is titled American Acres.

 

Café Corner

Pete and Ria Andronis are off to a good start with their nifty little coffee and pastry shop, Café Corner, located at the southwest corner of West Third and Pennsylvania (across from Zeno's). This friendly new enterprise is attractive inside and out. There's plenty of freshly brewed coffee, pastries, and a variety of crepes that are delicious.

 

Dis 'n' Data

The arches are going up! &endash; a little different looking than we expected, but not bad. There's still a lot of work to be done, including electrical wiring, install-ling fiber optic cable, and all kinds of other stuff I don't understand. How many arches? Seventeen.

Congratulations to Ellen Grevey, recently named new director of the Ohio Art League.

Pisa Pete's, located at 811 Highland Street, is on the Victorian Village Home and Garden Tour, Sunday, September 15. Owner Dave McLaughlin's Secret Garden will be included on the tour. This quaint little garden is located behind the pizzeria, and it is a gem. Worth traveling across town to see!

Welcome to Sharon O'Brien's Grandview Mercantile, which is now located at 873 N. High. This is a splendid store and a great addition to the Short North.

A 250-unit apartment is going up just southwest of the North Market. What a convenience for the new apartment dwellers. What an opportunity and challenge for the market merchants!

It's confirmed. A branch of the Huntington National Bank will be located where Kenny's Pawn Shop was located. They should be open by the first of the year. Last month, we said the bank was going into the Raffensberger Gallery location. Close, but close only counts in horseshoes!

Heartland Victorian Village recently added a renovated wing to their facilities. Heartland provides intensive rehabilitation services for short- or long-term patients transitioning from hospital to home.

In this great country of technological marvels, wouldn't you think someone could invent a truck motor that doesn't have to be kept running while the truck is parked. Talk about pollution and a waste of energy!

More and more nitwits are running red lights in our city. Not the amber light. The red light! Like lemmings they blindly (and stupidly) slither through the intersections after the light has changed, sometimes two or three at a time. Brainless!

We've said it before, we'll say it again! The Gazette is delivered to every house from downtown to the campus. Also check us out on the Internet. The Gazette Web site archives darn near everything we print. Go to www. shortnorth.com

And, my environmental Web site has all kinds of novel things on it. Try it. It's an adventure! You'll find it at www.netwalk.com/~vireo/boaf.html

Until next time, remember September 11, and keep your powder dry! p


(From the August 2002 issue)

Mister Mayor!

For what seems like an eternity now, High Street in the Short North and many of its tributary side streets have been uprooted and torn apart due to various types of repair and construction.

From day to day, deep ditches and trenches have appeared up and down High Street. At first, for fiber-optic cables, then for the arch anchors. Earth-moving equipment has ploughed and plundered the streets for conduits, sewer repair, ramps, stuff related to I-670 &endash; you name it.

The merchants - the little guys, the shopkeepers and gallery owners have had to bite the bullet. Oftentimes parking has been almost non-existent. No parking means no customers. No customers means no sales. That red stuff you see in the murky waters of construction projects, Mister Mayor, is the spilled blood of Free Enterprise - and red ink!

James Thurber - who once traveled these streets - would have appreciated the beautiful irony of the entire situation. The orange gloves so frequently seen on the parking meters would have reminded him of some strange tropical birds. Macaws, maybe. And the barrels? Well, if poodles were running the world, we wouldn't have all these problems, he would say.

If only we could get some city-funded parking garages up here in the Short North. The fartsy-artsy kind &endash; like down in the Arena District. Ones with shops and café spaces built into them. I'd venture to say that they would pay for

themselves soon enough. Best of all, the city already owns some lots in the area that could be used.

The Short North is a major attraction to tourists and residents alike. It is the gateway to downtown. It's the home of the Convention Center and the wonderful North Market. It's the link to one of the largest universities in the nation.

We need more parking, Mister Mayor. We need parking garages. We will continue to shout this message from the rooftops. It is so obvious! Please see what you can do!

 

Holy H2O

A few weeks back there was a news item in the press involving the Rev. Leroy Jenkins and bottled holy water Reading about the incident reminded me of a funny story I once heard about the subject.

Seems this sweet little old lady went up to the minister of her church after the service was over and expressed her concern about the supply of holy water.

The minister reassured her that there was no problem, and he didn't foresee one anytime in the future. As he patted her on the back, he said "You see, dear, we just use regular tap water - and then we boil the hell out of it!"

 

Memory Medley

Joyce Merryman recently reminded me of the time the OSU polo team used to play in the fields that are now mostly parking lots for the University medical Center.

And, now that we're in a reminiscing mood, do you remember Benny Klein who had the steak house near Broad and High? That was sure a popular place. On day at noon, I went in there for lunch and Benny excitedly greeted me at the door with his bone-crushing handshake. "Tommy, come here quick! I want you to meet somebody!"

He tugged me over to the bar, and guess who was sitting there? Sam Shepherd! Yep, no other. And he was with his brand new wife, Adrianne! He had just gotten out of the slammer and flown up to Chicago to marry his pen-pal Adrienne, then back to Columbus. He'd been living for so long on Spring Street, I guess he felt like Columbus was his hometown.

They had made reservations at the one-time Arlington Arms and invited me to join them at the pool later that day. About five o'clock that afternoon, I did. I didn't stick around very long. But, that's another story.

 

 

Heartland Home

Heartland Victorian Village just added a renovated wing to their accommodations. The wing features private and semi-private rooms, cable-tv, private telephone, and other amenities.

Heartland is designed to provide intensive rehabilitation services for short- or long- term patients transitioning from hospital to home.

 

LitBits

I became hooked on the writing of Annie Dillard a long time ago. This comely lass has always wielded a pen as neatly and adroitly as she combed her luxurious golden hair. An accomplished writer of prose and poetry, Annie also has a deep and committed sense of environ-mental justice. Her big book was Pilgrim at Tinker's Creek, a run-away best seller for many years.

One time, I read that she was teaching at a certain college in New England, and I sent her a poem I had written and suggested that she send me one. Damned clever, huh? Well, she sent me a nice postcard, complimented me on my poem, but neglected sending me a poem in return.

Here are a couple of tidbits gleaned from Pilgrim at Tinker's Creek.

"Seems like we're just set down here," a woman said to me recently, "and don't nobody know why."

Time is the continuous loop, the snakeskin with scales endlessly over-lapping without beginning or end, or time is an ascending spiral if you will, like a child's toy slinky.

"... nature is very much a now-you-see-it, now-you-don't affair. A fish flashes, then dissolves in the water before my eyes like so much salt. Deer apparently ascend bodily into heaven; the brightest oriole fades into leaves.

 

Cabaret Concept

What a sight! Actors, singers, make-up people, musicians, stagehands, book- keepers, writers &endash; everyone connected with Shadowbox Cabaret and its Short North offshoot, 2Co's Cabaret, rolled up their sleeves and pitched in on the landscaping re-do at 790 North High Street.

Conceived by the theatres' founding father, Steve Guyer, the project went like A Cat on a Hot Tin Roof &endash; maybe not counting a blister or two, a little dehydration, a few splinters, some choice cuss words, and a lot of laughter.

 

Dis 'n' Data

Columbus Eyeworks at Fourth and High sure has an appropriate phone number: 421-2020. How about that! They do great work too, and give you lots of personal and professional attention.

Some sure bets: For live music, go to Skully's or Grandview Café. For cozy conversation and oldie-but-goodies, it's gotta be Zeno's. For a contemporary juke box and lots of eye candy, go to B. Hampton's. Gotta a yen for seafood? Go to R. J. Snapper's. For down home cooking, go to Betty's. For elegance, go to Rigsby's. For a late Friday or Saturday night nightcap or bite to eat, go to Braddock's in North Market. For a great selection of beer and ale, go to the Elevator. To chow down and quaff a few with old friends, go to the Press Grill. To do all the above and also throw darts, go to the Short North Tavern. For serendipity, go to Roadhouse Annie's.

To celebrate the fantastic new mural at Lincoln and High, the Short North Neighborhood Foundation is hosting a cocktail party at R. J. Snapper's on Wednesday August 7, from 5:30 to 7:30 pm. Lots of edibles, cash bar, door prizes, media and fine folk. This is the first of several celebratory events the Foundation will be presenting over the next year. The cost is $35/person.

Did you know that the old Jai Lai Restaurant started out on High Street in the Short North? They had a couple of locations, as a matter of fact, and were considered one of Columbus' top five restaurants. They met their greatest success right across Poplar Street from Functional Furnishings.

Jim Kinney asked Beth Fairman to marry him during the Doo Dah parade. She said, "Yes!" They were both on the "gravy" float. The momentous event happened near Buttles and High.

More "Inside Doo Dah Scoops." Who would have guessed that two women were among all those Marching Fidels. Yep! Hiding behind big bushy beards, cigars, and dark glasses were two lovely young ladies - and we're not going to give them away!

Long-time Tivoli resident Arthur Wilson and his good friend Walter Yensen are moving to Tampa, Florida. Their many friends wish them the best!

Until next time, remember that being anywhere near the I-270 project is surely living on the cutting edge.

 

(From the July 2002 issue)

Spooky Skies

I love to look up at the sky. I do it all the time. If people think I'm crazy, that's their tough luck. Sometimes, I just stand around and gawk at what's going on up there, and you'd be surprised at all the action, and the beauty, there is right over your head.

The sky is my ocean, and like a seascape, it is always changing. I love little puffy clouds. I love clouds that look like elephants holding onto each other's tails. Or puppy dogs, or fish, or flying birds. Or whales and dolphins and gaggling geese. I've seen them all up there and even captured some on film.

For sheer suspense, there's nothing like watching the great thunderheads

of summer rumbling and rolling around. It's Wagnerian drama with tremendous timpani and surreal stage-lighting. Even more exciting might be squall lines, fast and furious, approaching with the speed of an OSU running back with a Michigan tackler on his heels.

The ancients looked to the sky for omens. While I'm not inclined to be superstitious or to believe in the super-natural, I have seen some weird things going on up there in the sky. Way back, after the tornados over in Xenia, a lot of those same storm clouds passed over Columbus. I aimed my camera up at the sky, and you wouldn't believe what appeared after I had the pictures developed.

One of them revealed an evil-looking goatish face that was the image of Satan himself. Another showed a bewildered-looking bearded gent who was the spitting image of Jehovah. It's as if the two of them were up there duking it out. I thought about sending them to one of the scandal tabloids, but then thought better of it. Boy oh boy, even they would have thought I was a nutcase.

One other thing: Just because I knock on wood after I brag, doesn't mean I'm superstitious. Or the fact that I always put my right shoe on first - darned if I know where that one came from!

 

Grand Plans

It won't be long before a string of graceful arches, aglow with a multitude of lights, span High Street from the Convention Center to Fifth Avenue. It will be something to write home about.

And, that's not all, folks. Short North developers are planning a number of ambitious projects. At least half a dozen new buildings are slated to go up in the next two or three years, including a five-story, 80-room luxury hotel.

Other buildings will result in as many as 130 new apartments and condos, plus a variety of street-level retail shops. This flurry of housing and browsing will occur mostly on the west side of High Street and will consist of renovating and adding onto existing buildings. The Victorian Village Commission is in the process of reviewing final plans.

The two largest projects will be a 69,000-square-foot building on the site of the old Sofa Express store at 845 North High Street, and the luxury hotel, which the Beck Street Capital plans to construct at 701 - 709 North High Street.

In addition to all that, Tim Wagner, Director of the Short North Special Improvement District, has announced that as many as twenty "pocket parks" will be spotted along High Street between the Convention Center and Fifth Avenue, so maybe some critters and birds will be given a new scenic home too.

 

Salads & Silver

Celestial Awakenings, which recently opened at 972 N. High, is having a good old-fashioned Farmer's Market, Satur-day, July 6 and Sunday, July 7 from 10 am to 4 pm. All the produce is from Ohio and is organically grown. Owner Michele Hutchinson offers a variety of healing products and services at her new shop, including bodywork, aromatherapy, and holistic remedies. Call Michele at 348-5570 for more information.

Byzantium, 1088 N. High, is featuring a Silver Bead Trunk Show Friday thru Sunday, July 12 - 14, from noon to 7 pm (6 pm on Sunday). On hand will be over 500 styles of loose sterling silver beads and findings, including fancy clasps with gemstones, and lots more. Call 291-3130 for more accurate information than I can possibly provide. I don't even know what "findings" are. Duh.

 

Lit Bits

It might have been the combination of hot sultry weather and all the rain we had the first part of June, but the catalpa trees thrived on it. They are just about the last of all our native trees to bloom, and this past June they bloomed and bloomed and bloomed. I've never seen such profusion of blossoms. It's as if they were adorned with popcorn balls, and I couldn't help but think of A.E. Housman's great little poem about cherry trees in bloom.

 

Loveliest of trees, the cherry now

Is hung with bloom along its bough,

And stands about the woodland ride

Wearing white for Eastertide.

 

Now, of my threescore years and ten,

Twenty will not come again,

And take from seventy springs a score,

It only leaves me fifty more.

 

And since to look at things in bloom

Fifty springs are little room.

About the woodland I will go

To see the cherry hung with snow.

 

(

Lanning Lament

What can you say when you lose a stellar attraction like the Lanning Gallery? And a bright star like Ursula Lanning? For seven years, Ursula (along with adorable Nell, her popular feline friend) provided the Short North with an outstanding art gallery along High Street that welcomed one talented artist after another. And, she did this with style and integrity. Fortunately, Ursula's not going away entirely. She will be doing some counseling and will also continue to schedule the art exhibits at Lemongrass.

 

Groovy Gothic

With that hurt, surly look on her face it was clear from the very start that the woman in Grant Wood's American Gothic was unhappy with her lot in life. It is the farmer's unmarried daughter, by the way, not his wife. Now, with the unveiling of artists Steve Galgas' and Michael Altman's version of this classic painting as a 15-foot-high mural just off High Street on Lincoln, we can be sure of the woman's discontent. She is standing on her head!

Obviously unhappy with the never-ending toil heaped on her by her stoical and pious father, this gal has plunked herself down in the middle of the Short North &endash; and, you heard me right, she's standing on her head! This is a protest that's hard to ignore. After all those years back on the farm, then being on public display for decades more, this lil ol' gal has become unglued and refuses to take any more macho crap. A prisoner of the prairie for many years, now she is having a fling - in this case, standing on her head in the middle of the Short North. Go take a look, be sure to give her a wink and tell her what pretty blue eyes she has. She might even smile.

 

Dis 'n' Data

Congrats to Richard Stopper, owner of R.J. Snapper's, for being named Independent Operator of the Year by the Central Ohio Restaurant Association.

Hubbard Elementary School was approved recently for a Neighborhood Partnership Program grant by the Columbus Foundation. A new play-ground is in the offing!

Braddock's, on the mezzanine at the North Market, has some Friday and Saturday hours for night owls. On those nights, the kitchen stays open from 10:00 pm to 3:30 am. Not only that, they have a nice bar for more late-night fun .

Michele Mooney, Director of Marketing at the North Market will be doing a bit more shopping of her own at the Market down the road, what with another mouth to feed after the recent birth of her son, James-David Burke Mooney - what a name! Measuring 21 inches long, JD weighed 8 pounds 10 "ouches" and miraculously entered this world on Sunday, June 9. Congratulations, Michele!

The Columbus Chippers Wood- carving Club will be exhibiting their creations July 13 and 14 at the Aladdin Shrine Center, 3850 Stelzer Road. Show hours are 10 am to 5 pm on Saturday, and 11 am to 4 pm on Sunday.

Talk on the street has it that Caren Petersen, owner/director of A Muse Gallery might be contemplating a second gallery - in the former Lanning space.

Wonder what ever happened to Danny Firestone? He owned a big photo studio and processing plant downtown on Third Street. And, I'm still waiting for some word on what happened to my pal John Poepplemeyer.

Trying to drink more water these days. They say it's good for darn near everything that ails you. Trouble is, I can never get up to that recommended dose of eight glasses a day!

Last month when I was critiquing the white page phone disgrace, what with all the type too small to read, I forgot to mention that the pages are so thin they would never have passed the good old-fashioned outhouse test.

Until next time, remember there's no sense being pessimistic. It probably doesn't pay off anyway. p

 

(From the June 2002 Issue)

Peewee Print

Talk about cheap! The current Ameritech White Page Directory doesn't even deserve the name "directory." The type is so small it's just a blur. It's so small a midget couldn't read it. What a travesty and disservice to their customers, especially in this era with growing numbers of senior citizens tottering around. We had a tough enough time reading the phone numbers in the old directories. We wanted the type BIGGER, not smaller. You bird brains!

Picture this for a worst-case scenario: Someone who doesn't have the eyes of an eagle (or a high-powered magnifying glass) is trying desperately to find a phone number. It's a matter of life and death. There they are struggling to focus in on a sea of gray lines of tiny type, names and numbers cheek to jowl, unable to decipher a zero from a six, a one from a seven, or a two from a toadstool!

What were you goofus-heads thinking of? How can you cheapskates maintain your credibility with such a crumby publishing job? The other day I saw a ten-year-old with the sharpest of vision, screw up her face, squint her eyes, and go YUK! That says it all. One final word: If you guys want small, how about small phone line charges? How about small (and honest) long distance charges? How about small service charges? There are some things in this world that are OK small, but the type in the phone book is not one of them! Start taking Viagara! Maybe that will help you think BIG!

 

Project Plans

Jeffrey Place, an ambitious project on the eastern edge of Italian Village is still very much in the works. The area is bounded by N. Fourth Street, I-670, East First Avenue and the railroad tracks.

The project will include single family homes, townhouses, lofts, senior housing facilities, a school, offices, pocket parks, some shops and, maybe, a hotel. For more information, go to jeffreyplace.com

 

Columnist Catch

After fishing around for a while, we've caught a new columnist. And boy what a catch! A veteran journalist, Betty Garrett Deeds boasts a long and distinguished career. She began work at the Columbus Citizen-Journal in 1966 and had already signed on as a correspondent for the New York Times national desk when she left the C-J in 1973, continuing with the Times until 1979.

Betty also served as Contributing Editor of Columbus Monthly and as Senior Editor of Ohio Magazine. Over the years, she has contributed to maga-zines as diverse as Appalachia and Art News, McCall's and Working Mother. Among her other journalistic accomplish-ments is a volume of Columbus history called Columbus: America's Crossroads published in 1980.

Betty's column, "Sic Transit Every-thing" can be found on page 19. She refers to the expression as a "verbal shrug." Looking up the translation for Sic transit gloria mundi many years ago, Betty recalls chuckling to herself while reading "Thus passes away the glory of this world" and thinking, "Well, doesn't everything?"

Hopefully, Betty will be pondering this fatalistic phrase for many years to come!

 

Sexuality Study

In June, St. Mark Lutheran Church, 95 W. Fifth Avenue in Victorian Village, begins a month-long exploration of issues regarding same-sex unions and the practice of ordaining gay and lesbian pastors.

The congregation will host Dr. James M. Childs Jr., Professor of Theology and Ethics and Director of Academic Development at Trinity Lutheran Semi-nary in Bexley, on Sunday June 2 at St. Mark Lutheran Church, to learn about his position as Director of the new Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) study on sexuality.

Last year, a Churchwide Assembly governing the ELCA mandated that there be a study document developed by 2005, complete with proposals for action regarding policies on same-sex unions and the ordination of gay and lesbian pastors.

The congregation of St. Mark invites the community to attend any worship or discussion session throughout the month of June. Worship begins at 9:30 am on Sundays at the Church, located at Fifth and Dennison in Victorian Village. Discussions will be held following worship, at about 10:45 am.

St. Mark Lutheran Church is a "Reconciling in Christ" congregation, which specifically affirms and welcomes gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered individuals into the full life of their congregation. For more information, call 299-2514 or 352-4660.

 

Lit Bits

One time I asked Woody Hayes if he had ever read Hell in a Very Small Place, by Bernard Fall. "Read it?" he snorted. "Tommy, I practically know it by heart. Not only that," he grinned, "I've probably bought a dozen copies and given 'em away."

The book we were talking about is about the siege of the French stronghold at Dien Bien Phu in what was then North Vietnam. The Viet rebels were called the Viet Minh; and under the leadership of General Giap, they overcame the French bastion which, it turned out, led to their withdrawal from the entire country.

"One of the best war books ever written," Woody added.

 

 

Dragonfly Dates

Dragonfly neo-v Cuisine, 247 King Avenue, has a new patio for sidewalk dining and relaxation. Enjoy elegance in the fresh air. Also check out their bargain beverage prices every Tuesday and Wednesday evening. How about $3 for frozen cocktails! Plus tapas-style appetizers. Visit their Web site at www.dragonflyneov.com.

 

Film Flam

Went to see Hollywood Ending at the Drexel Grand recently. The film stars Woody Allen with an accompanying cast of George Hamilton, Erica Leerhsen, and others. What could have been a humorous and sensitive movie gets out of control with a heavy-handed plotline that stretches credulity to the limit. Briefly, an aging director gets a second chance to direct a film and goes psychosomatically blind in the process. But, with a couple of co-conspirators, he bluffs his way through. Missed the boat on this one.

 

Summer Stuff

Here are some upcoming dates to remember: Gallery Hops on June 1, July 6, August 3, and September 7. Always on the first Saturday of the month. Lots of art, street performers and musicians, impromptu vendors, great food, sociable bars, something for everybody. And as SNBA spokesperson Mary Martineau says, "People-watching at its best!"

The Victorian Village Yard Sale is June 1 from 9 am to 3 pm. It's like a treasure hunt!

Comfest is June 28 &endash; 30. This is a free festival featuring lots of music, food, things to buy, and interesting people.

Gay Pride Weekend is June 28 &endash; 30. The Annual Parade and lots of other activities. Call 299-7764 for details.

DooDah Parade. July 4, noon to about an hour later. Rain date: July 3. Come enjoy the Alice in Wonderland insanity and inanity of this one-of-a-kind Robin Williams kind of event. Most of our founding fathers, those not too tight in their britches, would have loved this true showing of democratic spirit. Yea Ben Franklin! Yea Thomas Jefferson! Yea Tom Paine!

 

Garden Gathering

Spend a sensational evening sipping wine and munching hors-d'oeuvres in the Russell Page Sculpture Garden at the Columbus Museum of Art on Thursday, June 27, from 5:30 to 8:30 pm. Music will be by Dave Bott. There will also be a silent auction. Guests can view the famous Grandma Moses exhibit. Reservations are only $35 per person. Call Sharon Zook at 451.1744, or the giftshop at 629.0314.

 

Dis 'n' Data

You just never know who you're going to run into. Mike Kast, the genial owner of the cheese shop at North Market, recently waited on Johnny Mathias. And, upstairs at Braddock's, who else should show up but Kathleen Turner!

The Press Grill, 741 North High Street, has new owners and is now up and running. Lori and Kevin Ames sold the establishment to a partnership of Ron Crisswell, Tom Magelaner, Molly Merkle, and the husband and wife team of Randy and Tina Corbin. The

Corbins also own the Club 185 in German Village. For more facts, call 298-0869.

Dick Stevens' Elevator Brewers and Draught Haus is featuring live jazz by the Joe Crump Quartet Monday nights from 9 pm to the witching hour.

Betcha didn't know that way back in the early days, everybody shared the same tub of hot water for bathing &endash; and that wasn't too often. It was men first, then women and, finally, children. By that time the water was apt to be so dirty you could actually lose someone in it. Hence the expression, "Don't throw the baby out with the bathwater."

My reality check just bounced so I gotta go. See you next time.

 

(From the May 2002 Issue)

Mantis Mania

This is the time of year that the praying mantis tribes are up and about. There are some twenty native species plus a European and a Chinese variety that were introduced into this country after the 1900s. They are fairly common, even frequenting our backyards on occasion, and are easily recognizable by their large size (four or five inches long), green coloration, and spiny, angular appearance.

The mantises are voracious predators, feeding mostly on other insects, but sometimes with decided cannibalistic tendencies. I'll never forget the morning that I was leading one of my CAP classes down at Stage's Pond when we encountered a spindly mantis that was greedily devouring a thick meaty locust as if it were a succulent roast. A half hour later, retracing our steps along the trail, the mantis was still chompin' away.

They say that the mantis is the only insect that can look over its shoulder. Well, I'll tell you this; they can do a lot more than that. While the male and female are copulating (that's the f-word in scientific circles), the female not only looks over her shoulder, but she starts nibbling her husband's head off. If left undisturbed, she continues right down to his thorax (chest), into his abdomen, and lower. The poor sap doesn't seem to notice what's happening to him because his sexual organ is still pumping away!

Does this behavior remind you of anybody you know?

 

Film Fare

Recently looked at The Horse Whisperer, starring Robert Redford and Kristin Scott Thomas. A good movie. Damned good, even though it's a bit long at 169 minutes. And, not to be picky, but with that big mop of blond hair Reford seemed to be hanging on to his youth for dear life. But, as I said, a good movie with a lot of life-lessons to be learned, not to speak of some wonderful scenery. Great acting by Pilgrim, the horse.

 

For the Birds

Over 500 birdhouses designed and decorated by local artists, celebrities, business owners and children of St. Joseph Montessori School will be on display and for sale the first weekend in May at 30 West Warren Street. The event will begin with a preview party on Friday, May 3, from 6 to 11 pm with hors d' oeuvres provided by Hoggy's and music by the Joe Crum Quintet. Tickets are $35 and can be purchased by calling 291-8601.

On Saturday, May 4, "For the Birds" will be open to the public from 10 am to 10 pm. Admission is free. Ann Dierker and Ann Kozliner, Co-chairs of the event, hope that individuals will stop by during the Short North Gallery Hop.

Celebrities Andrea Cambern, Dave Kaylor, Cabot Ray, Joe Blundo, Sally Crane, Mayor Michael Coleman, Greg Lashutka and Cameron Mitchell will decorate birdhouses.

Artists will be crafting their birdhouses into unique designs. The well-known artists include Denny Griffith, Roger Williams, Paul Robinette, Mac Worthington, Duff Lindsay, Paul Richmond, Marci Russell and Mary Kile

Several galleries are decorating bird-houses. They include Acme Art, Antiques & Art on Poplar, Art Impressions, Artistically Bent, Art & Home, Blue Cube Arts, 772 Cameo, Galeria Zona Corazon, Gallery V, Global Gallery, Lanning Gallery, Ohio Art League, PM Gallery, Raffensberger Gallery, Rebecca Ibel Gallery, Riley Galleries and ROY G BIV Gallery.

Proceeds from the birdhouse sales will benefit St. Joseph Montessori School located on Hamlet Street in the Short North. St. Joseph's was established in 1968 and offers a classic Montessori program for children, beginning at age 3 and continuing through the 8th grade.

The Montessori approach is an overall program of growth and development and the work of each child is determined on an individual basis, thus enabling the child to become a confident, competent person. in his or her approach to life and learning. St. Joseph's does not screen for academic excellence, provides a substantial amount of tuition assistance and is open to children of all faiths and beliefs.

 

Ink Stink

Every time I'm working on my taxes and sorting through hundreds of receipts, it becomes apparent there must be a serious ink shortage in this country. At least, this seems to be true judging from the cash receipts that I accumulate for the purpose of business deductions. The printing on half of them is barely discernable, and there's always some that are impossible to read. Come on, you big corporate chains, this is America, the bountiful land of money and honey. You'd sure think computer and office supply stores, especially, would be on their toes about this. But no, they're among the worst offenders. Shame on you guys!

 

Lit Bits

A new book by A. J. Drew of Salem West has just been published. Its provocative title is: Wicca Spellcraft for Men. In its pages you will discover the difference between male energy and female energy. He explains the principles of spellcraft and includes numerous recipes for incense and oils &endash; and how to increase their effectiveness.

Digging around one of my bookcases, I recently came across an old friend: The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam. How delightful to run my eyes over some of the wise and melancholy verses like this often recited one:

The Moving Finger writes; and having writ,

Moves on: nor all your Piety nor Wit,

Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,

Nor all your Tears wash out a Word of it.

 

Plant Plans

Urban Gardener has a service that will have you spending more time planting than planning. They have a wonderful variety of colorful annuals, perennials, planters, almost anything you'll need, indoors or out. The pleasant folks there at 940 N. High Street will special order the perennials and annuals that you want and have them all ready for you to pick up on an agreed upon date. You can do it by phone! Just call them at 299-4769. Also visit www.ugardener.com

 

Dis 'n' Data

All the pink bows and ribbons are to remind you of the Race for the Cure. A special photo exhibit is at Functional Furnishings.

The SNAFU kids and parents will romp down High Street at 5 pm on Hop Day, led by Linden-McKinley's marching band. In case you're wondering, SNAFU means Short North Arts and Family Unity. Catch it, and bring the kids!

Back in March, Bill McCrackin located the Cooper's Hawk nest over in Goodale Park. Good work, Bill!

Speaking of birds again, I lost my longtime birding buddy Ernie Limes not long ago. If you want to see a picture of

Ernie and read a tribute I wrote for him, go to: www.netwalk.com/~vireo/boaf.html

Don't forget the Apron Gala at North Market Saturday, May 18.

The 7th Annual Columbus Musicians' Homeless Awareness Concert will be held in the Goodale Park Gazebo from Noon to 7 pm on Sunday, May 19. Look for local bands performing Jazz, Blues, Reggae, Pop & Bluegrass.

And, a message from Carrie Knight: Happy Birthday to my niece Makenzie Knight, all of two years old. Happy birthday, Honey!

Goodbye to Jillian's, hello to somebody else. It's a revolving door down there in the Arena District. A feeding frenzy if there ever was one.

And, always remember that a kick in the ass is a step forward.

 

 

(From the April 2202 Issue)

Spam Scam

E-mail is swell. I love it. No, it's no substitute for the sound of someone's voice on the telephone, but it's groovy. A nice addition to all the ways we communicate with each other. Let's see, there's regular mail (snail mail we call it nowadays), there's FAX, which is okay, especially for sending a drawing or some kind of a form or document - a little rough, but handy at times. I mentioned the telephone, and that includes cell phones.

Anyway, more and more of us are using e-mail, and it's sort of fun. Especially nowadays with the attachments and all that jazz. It might even make FAX obsolete. But there's one awful downside to e-mail and that's all the spam scams you get. They pop up all over the place. They're like roaches!

Every day I get 40 to 50 of these uninvited vermin. "Look twenty years younger! Overnight!" And "Mortgage rates were never lower! Call us for the deal of a lifetime!" These slimeball shysters use all kinds of unscrupulous ploys to get you to read their pathetic messages.

How's this for a sweet come-on? : "I owe you a lunch." Ha ha! Sure! Where you going to take me? To the cleaners, I would guess - if I bit on your phony bait. Some of these slick swindlers take a more threatening tone. "Urgent! Collec-tion Department Notice!" Where do they get off scaring people like that? And who would want to do business with them?

How about this? "Add years to your life!" Oh, sure, you bastards. I'd like to take a few years off yours! And, of course, there are those inescapable e-mails with sexual innuendos. "Barn Yard Fun!" or "We'll fix you up with teen-age nymphs!" I'll bet - and with the cops right behind. The one that gives me the biggest laugh is: "We'll add 2 inches to your penis overnight!" Sorry, guys. You're barking up the wrong tree. I don't need it - so get lost!

Burkhart Art

Several weeks ago I meandered over to the Shot Tower Gallery at Fort Hayes to see the Emerson Burkhart exhibit. I was greeted by lovely and gracious gallery director Teresa Weidenbusch. She filled me in on a lot of interesting details about the exhibit and made me feel right at home. The exhibit of 52 paintings was gathered from private collections by Lynda Dickson and was a stunning representation of the artist at his finest. Some of the paintings were familiar, but many of them I had never seen before. And, let me tell you, they were smashing! Once again, I was impressed with the genius of this man.

Art Auction

Open your hearts and pull out your wallets! ART for LIFE 2002, a charitable art auction established to raise funds for programs and services to benefit persons and families with HIV/AIDS will be held on Saturday, April 20. Both a Live Auction and a Silent Auction will be held that evening at the Columbus Museum of Art and the Canzani Center Gallery at Columbus College of Art & Design. A Post-Party will take place following the auctions. For information about art and tickets, call Sally Blue at 299-2437, extension 126.

Kids Chorus

The Short North Youth Chorus, an ensemble of 20 children, ages 8 to 13, living in or attending school in the Short North, has a bright harmonious future ahead of it. New Music Director Letitia Edwards will make sure of that!

Edwards, recently hired by the Short North Performing Arts Association, believes that she will not only rejuvenate herself, but the lives of the children under her direction. She is currently co-director of African American Voices at The Ohio State University and winner of last December's Greater Cincinnati Vocalist Competition.

The Chorus is a joint project of the SNPAA and the Godman Guild. The children performed with the Columbus Symphony in the "Gospel Meets Symphony" concert at the Ohio Theatre last May and are involved in various projects within the Short North. Those interested in having a child become a member should contact the SNPAA at 291-5854.

 

Dialogue Demise

My rosy report last month about Dialogue's branching and blossoming turned out to have been more a case of wishful thinking than hard facts. After 24 years of incomparable arts coverage for the Midwest, and a couple years of financial fallout and periodic recoveries, Dialogue magazine closed its doors last month. The demise of over two decades of artistic commitment is no minor loss for the arts community. We wish executive editor Meg Galipault and her co-workers all the best life has to offer.

 

Fine Flick

Went to see We Were Soldiers. It's a grim and gripping portrayal of the first major American firefight in Vietnam. The film is very realistic and not for the faint-hearted. Mel Gibson is excellent as the professional soldier- in this case, a commissioned officer with a heart. Absorbing too, all the goings-on at the army camp in this country, and the brave women behind the men who were involved in the fighting. Another refresh-ing note: the enemy are depicted as human beings, not some form of low animal life. And, listen up, Movie Moguls! Turn the sound down, especially on the previews. If you make us all deaf, there will be no one left to come to your noisy flicks.

 

Dis 'n' Data

Coffee shops and delis seem to be popping up all over the Harrison West neighborhood. Pleasure to see the area attracting new shops and businesses and sprucing itself up!

Speaking of spruces, Green is the newest Short North neighbor at 14 East Poplar. Andy Elonich's team of profess-sionals will help you with your land-scaping and floral arrangements for any big social event you might be planning. B. Hampton's is "add" it again. New additions to their menu include lasagna and spaghetti and meatballs. This last beautiful dish is lavishly covered with marinara, Parmesan and mozzarella cheese.

To celebrate National Poetry Month, Columbus State will present A Chorus of Voices April 17 from noon to 1 pm in the West Lounge of Nestor Hall. Faculty members will read selections by their favorite poets. The event is free. Nestor Hall is located on Mount Vernon Avenue on the main campus downtown.

If you think you have it tough, how would you like to be a hen in an egg farm? What a cluckin' life that would be! So, don't go around laying eggs. Smile! Welcome each day as a great opportunity to make the world a better place!

 

I-670 Schedule

The following assessment of changing traffic patterns due to work on the I-670 project was submitted to us by Short North Business Association executive director Mary Martineau.

The final countdown for the widening of Interstate 670 and reconstruction between SR 315 and Interstate 71 is underway. The City of Columbus and ODOT announced the schedule for closures and lane restrictions associated with the18-month project.

Beginning Saturday, March 30, I-670 will be closed between Neil Avenue and Third Street for 18 months. During the project, motorists will be able to access the exit and entrance ramps at the Neil Avenue/Vine Street Connector from the west and Third and Fourth streets from the east, but will be unable to travel between the two on I-670.

Crosstown traffic will be detoured to SR 315 south to Interstate 70 east to I-71 north back to I-670 or vice-versa. Motorists can also use Town, Rich, Spring and Long Streets to travel east and west. In addition, Fourth Street under I-670 will be reduced to two lanes.

During the week of April 8, the following restrictions will be put in place:

• Third Street will be reduced to two lanes in the immediate area of I-670.

• High Street reduced to one lane in each direction between Poplar Avenue and Swan Street in the area of I-670. Traffic traveling south on High will be unable to turn left on Goodale Street.

• Goodale Street closed between Dennison Avenue and High Street.

• Goodale Street between High and Fourth Street one-way, eastbound only.

• The intersection of Park Street and Goodale Street closed over I-670, but open to local traffic. This includes business patrons, residents and visitors.

• Neil Avenue traffic maintained during peak hours but reduced between Goodale and Spruce off-peak hours.

 

"We recognize the closure will be difficult for motorists in the short term, but in the long term the project will significantly improve the commute for thousands of central Ohio motorists," said JP Blackwood with Paving the Way. "When the project is completed in the fall of 2003, motorists will be able to travel uninterrupted on I-670 from the west to the east side on a newer, safer highway."

The redesigned highway will be four lanes in each direction and, to improve safety, the new exit and entrance ramps will be wider and longer. The highway will also be realigned to eliminate difficult curves and provide safe shoulder areas for breakdowns and accidents. Design enhancements are planned to help maintain the beauty and historic character of the neighborhoods surrounding the project. Additional information and regular project updates can be found on www.pavingtheway and www.I-670.org or by calling Paving The Way at 645-PAVE or ODOT at 644-8309.


(From the March 2002 issue)

Joy of Juicing
Several months ago, I went out and bought myself a juicer. I had never had one before, but after my recent eye debacle, I figured I needed all the help I could get, something to regenerate my eye degeneracy. Oh, I've had plenty of blenders, but never a juicer. This little baby set me back about eighty bucks, but what the hey! Nowadays, I'm like King Midas, but instead of gold, everything I touch turns to juice.

It gives me such a sense of power. When I ram those carrots through my little juicer-gooser you'd think World War III was starting. Rrrraaagghhh! Sounds like a kamikaze coming straight through the kitchen. When I hook it up for an early morning grind, my neighbors are probably jolted right out of their beds.

In addition to the instruction booklet, I got a nice little tape with my purchase. A chap who calls himself "Juice Man" explains all the advantages of juicing it up. Even though he sometimes sounds like one of these blokes at a State Fair, he does offer some jazzy juice combinations. My favorite is carrot, celery, apple and, maybe cantaloupe, added to orange juice out of a carton and mixed in the blender, even though I know Juice Man disapproves of that latter addition. He calls it sugar water. What does he know! Didn't we all grow up and stay healthy drinking that? Sometimes I throw in a banana just to make sure I'm getting my daily allotment of phosphorous.

My co-worker Margaret is also a committed juicer, so our conversation routinely zeros in on fruits and vegetables. We even swap recipes. During our deadline, after an all-night workout, sometimes juice is the only thing that keeps us going.

So you see, I'm hooked on the joy of juicing. It's definitely a way of life. But two words of warning: Some of these concoctions could raise hair on the hide of a bald Chihuahua. Don't run the banana through the juicer.

Arts Advocate
Sometimes it's hard to keep track of all the newspapers and magazine coming out of Columbus. Dialogue is one of those that sometimes gets lost in the shuffle, but among artists and art lovers, the magazine is a well-recognized and highly esteemed advocate of the arts for the Midwest.

Only a couple of years ago, the magazine was facing a financial crisis resulting from unexpected funding cutbacks. Now, as a result of much tender loving care under the editorship of Meg Galipault and her dedicated staff, the publication is blossoming. Dialogue will soon expand its superlative coverage into the performing arts. In addition to the visual works of Midwestern artists, music, dance, film, opera and theater will be given voice by this valued publica-tion. For subscription information, call Dialogue at 621-3704

I-670 Coping
Darn near everybody who lives around the Short North, in addition to lots of people who thread their way through downtown, are going to be more than bothered by the work on I-670. So, if you get hung up in snarled traffic, remember, there's a lot of us out there sharing your pain. To help alleviate your suffering, here are some tips and suggestions:

• Be patient.
• Retain your sense of humor.
• Keep a pad and pencil in your car for those times when you're obviously not going anywhere. Maybe you could write a poem about how you feel.
• Coffee helps.
• Don't even consider ROAD RAGE.

Sweet Spring
Ain't Spring wonderful! I love the longer days, the forsythia in bloom, the tulips and daffydills, young people in love holding hands, old people in love doing anything, male House Finches, looking like they were dunked in strawberry jam, singing their pretty heads off, Mockingbirds jumpin' and jivin', baby-boomer thundershowers, rainbows, weather good enough that everybody who works for a living outdoors can be out there hammering, sawing, snipping, and whatever else they do. Ahhh, Spring! It's a good time to take a hike, clean up the yard, dust off the golf clubs or tennis racket and, I said it before, fall in love.

Lit Bits
Remember John Irving? Geeez, I haven't heard much about him lately. I hope he's alive and well &endash; and I wish he would write another one of his block-bustin' books. I miss getting totally immersed in one of his great novels, stories like The Hotel New Hampshire, The Cider House Rules, and The World According to Garp. Boy, oh boy, those were lip-smackin', gutsy books that kept my attention hostage until I had read every page. I checked Irving out on the Internet the other day and came across a lot of stuff, including an interesting essay titled, "Pornography and the New Puritans." If you get a chance and you're curious, look it up.

Sony Sound
I love movies! Not all of them, of course, but most of them. I even liked Gosford Park, in spite of its huge cast, rapid changes of scene, slow moving plot, and lots of tedium. I loved Hearts in Atlantis, based on a Steven King story. I even liked Amelie, a French film with subtitles, and I say that in spite of all the sophomoric loud sound every time a scene changed, or a door opened, or for any other stupid excuse. What I hate most, however, is when the movie moguls crank up the Sony sound on the coming attractions. They do this to the point of torture &endash; to the detriment of bodily health, peace of mind, and good hearing. A bunch of concerned citizens ought to join together and file a class action suit against these dudes.

Dis 'n' Data
Wild Plum, the new florist in our neighborhood, is one beautiful place. In addition to delivering fresh colorful flowers, the shop offers a nice display of potted plants. Drop in, say hello to proprietor Kimberly Ingram, and don't forget to smell the roses. Wild Plum is located at Dennison and Price.

I stopped in R.J. Snappers Bar & Gill recently to have a couple of beers and some food. I was alone, so I sat at the bar, had a couple of Bud Lights and crab cakes. Both hit the spot. And, Snappers was bustling with people. So nice to see.

The Urgent Care Center is now open at Doctors Hospital. Call 297-4000 for additional information.

Don't forget to behave yourself, stay out of trouble, and be nice to people.

(From the Feb. 2002 issue)

Win/Lose

Last month I told you about some of my eye problems, the eye drops and all that. Well, there's more. It's a real lose/lose situation. I have what's called dry macular degeneration in my left eye and wet macular degeneration in my right eye. I hate to be picky, but couldn't they have come up with a better name! Degeneration? Sounds degenerate to my ears - and there's nothing wrong with my hearing!

Anyway, the condition of the right eye is the most serious because tiny blood vessels behind the retina begin to leak and cause scar tissue to develop. The result is a small gray blurry spot in the center of the vision in my right eye. It also distorts things a bit. Like in a fun house mirror! Sometimes it's a Picasso, perspective, sometimes Salvador Dali. Never a dull moment.

The peripheral vision is ok, thank goodness. From what I can gather, there was no way to have prevented this, no matter how many times I might have gone to have my eyes checked. They tell me it frequently happens to those of us over forty. In my case, why did it happen almost overnight? It was probably due to the stress resulting from my brother David's death. So it seems we frequently pay the piper twice for our losses. Maybe more than that.

Now comes the bizarre part. The only way to treat the condition in my right eye is by what's called Visudyne therapy. I've had this done twice, at three-month intervals. A nurse injects me with this

evil-looking green liquid that is light-activated. This vile stuff is so expensive the doctors laughingly call it liquid gold. It swirls through all my veins and, presumably, goes right up into my eyeballs. What did Snuffy Smith use to yell? Oh, yeah, it was "Balls of Fire!" That's me.

On the days I go to the hospital for my treatment, I have to wear long sleeves, gloves, dark glasses, and a down-turned hat. In other words, I look like a gangstah! Now, here's the worst part. After I get home I have to stay indoors during the daytime for 48 hours. If I venture out into the sunshine, I become light-activated, i.e., I'm toast.

The Catch 22 to all this? Nothing is guaranteed! The program is experimental. I'm a Visudyne guinea pig. They've had people going back for treatments as many as five times. This could get boring, folks - and expensive for the insurance companies. Boy, oh boy, I wish that Catch 22 were a Catch 20/20!

Scanty Signs
For Pete's sake, let's have more signage along High Street. As it is, a visitor or tourist has a difficult time finding some of our most outstanding restaurants, galleries and shops. It's hard enough to make a living these days, without making people jump through hoops just to find out where you are!

Why are some individuals so shy about signs? Maybe they're considered too commercial or too crass. You know, there are a lot of misconceptions about the Short North. One of them is that the area was originally a highbrow neighborhood. Not so! The Short North never was an overly sophisticated, fashionable part of Columbus. A mix was more like it. A little on the bawdy side, with bars and nightclubs like the one-time Latin Lounge and Kitty Show Bar, and sometimes a little more upscale with a swanky joint like the old Jai Lai.

All of this becomes more apparent with the coming of the arches. Like it or not, High Street will become much more commercial, and much more illuminated. So, let's be prepared. Visitors walking under those glowing grandiose arches will need more than a shadowy storefront to tell them what's what.

Helio Hanger
The newly erected structure at the Columbus Police Department helioport, on the corner of Olentangy River Road and West Third Avenue is a hanger. It has three bays, each of which will hold two aircraft, making a total of six, according to Lieutenant Mike Elkins. Completion is scheduled for the end of February or mid-March. Cost of the project? Approximately $786,000. I guess we'll have a few more whirly birds buzzing around the neighborhood watch-ing over us.

Actor's Alert
Shadowbox Cabaret is searching for energetic entertainers to supplement its staff and will undergo a rigorous recruiting effort at Noon on Sunday, February 3 at the Easton Town Center location. The audition requires a one to two-minute contemporary monologue, two songs of various styles (rock/pop preferred) and a script reading. Sorry, no accompanist provided, so bring your own banjo! Call Stephanie at 416-7265.

Nature Notes

It's almost time for John the Cooper's Hawk to think about love, romance, and raising another family. The dapper raptor hangs out around much of the Short North, but makes his home in Goodale Park. You can identify John by his barred rusty-colored chest, slate-gray back, and long tail. If you see a huge flurry of panicky pigeons or starlings circling around in the sky, chances are John Cooper is ruffling a few feathers somewhere nearby.

Lit Bits
I noticed recently that J.D. Salinger, author of Catcher in the Rye celebrated his 83rd birthday. After reading a couple of books about him over the past year or so, he seems almost like family. Happy birthday, Jerry!

There are some things that just defy explanation. For example, why did Dianne Arbus, Sylvia Plath, and Anne Sexton, three highly talented women, all commit suicide? Arbus was a photo-grapher. Plath and Sexton, of course, were poets.

On a happier note: Isn't it bizarre that Truman Capote, author of In Cold Blood and Harper Lee, author of To Kill a Mockingbird, were playmates and lived next door to each other when they were children in Monroeville, Alabama?

I once met Capote, by the way, at the bar in the Oak Room off the lobby of the Algonquin Hotel in New York City. He was in rare form, entertaining everyone at the bar. I was sitting next to him and he bought me a martini. We carried on a lively conversation for half an hour or so, but I kept having to move his hand off my knee. Two or three times!

He was a persistent little devil. I would pick up his hand over and over again and put it back where it belonged. "You're wasting your time, Truman," I told him, "I like women." He lived there in that famous hotel and, if I'm not mistaken, died not too long after that. Choked to death or something.

Fond Farewell
No one could have put it better than Christine Hayes when she informed us of the death of Warner Sidner. "Warner danced away to the further dance floor on Christmas Day," she wrote. "He was an employee extraordinaire of Yankee Trader and, as a matter of fact, he was the one in the photo on the front door that read, 'Yes, those are his ruby slippers!'" Warner was a veteran of the U.S. Air Force, had six siblings, and many friends. "A most engaging and witty fellow was Warner," Christine fondly concluded.

Missing Man
Back in the '70s and '80s I had a good friend whose name was John Poeppel-meyer. Then, about ten or fifteen years ago, he dropped out of sight. During the years that I knew him, he worked at Columbus and Southern Electric Co. and Capital University. His wife's name was Kitty, and they had several children. John was well informed about what was going on in the world and he had a sensational sense of humor. Does anyone out there have a clue as to what happened to him?

Dis n' Data
Look for Short North banners along the street by the end of the month.

An Open Book is moving into the High Street space vacated by Waterbeds 'n' Stuff at 685 N. High Street.

Across the river, Aspen Inn was purchased by John M. McKay, Robert T. Lane, and Steven L. Hitchins. They promise to retain the best of the past and provide even better things for the future. Mike LeVan serves as manager. When a number of planned changes are completed, the establishment will have a new name: the Cornish Arms.

Get a person's name right, it's their most valuable possession. That's one of journalism's basic rules. I broke it. I misspelled Dick Reitter's name in the last issue. I had it "Ryder." Sorry, Dick.

'Til next time, here's a thought from Carrie Knight: If you snooze, you lose, and if you snore, you lose more!Keep smilin'!

(From the January 2002 issue)

Dream Drops

There's a tiny bottle of prescription eyedrops on my bedside table. Every night before I go to sleep, I obediently - when I don't forget - open my eyes WIDE, and Split! Splat! administer a drop into each one.

Sometimes it's a little difficult hitting the target, but practice makes perfect. Now, here's the funny part. What my ophthalmologist doesn't know is that these funny little eyedrops enhance my dreams. I mean, once I go to sleep, it's like going to the movies. Interesting scenarios, intriguing plots, breathtaking colors. Most of them pleasant enough, a lot of them in locales I can't readily identify. Pretty good casting all in all.

Old friends and family members pop up with regularity, but there are plenty of newcomers I've never met before. Some excellent character casting and some darned good-looking women. Young starlets, no doubt. But there's never been much steamy screenplay, except for one time, but I best not tell you about that. It might melt the chrome plating right off your trailer-hitch.

There could be a downside to all this dripping and tripping. One night, I happened to glance at the instruction sheet, that little piece of paper with type so impossibly small you know without being told that your eyes are going bad. With the help of a magnifying glass, I skipped past the disclaimers until I came to the part about possible side-effects .

All of this was larded with Latin- and Greek-derived unpronounceable medical terms. What on earth was this? "Thyroid storms?" "Cardiac arrests?" For a moment, I turned pale and my pulse quickened, but, I'm happy to say, I quickly recovered; and, quicker than the blink of an eye, I was groping for that wonderful little bottle which obviously has a genie living inside of it. I was hooked! I wanted my drops!

There's more to be said about my wayward eyes. I've been trekking up to the OSU Medical Center to see what they can do for a case of "wet" macular degeneration. No, it isn't caused by my dreams. I'll tell you about it next time.

Parking Plus
Hopefully all the fiber-optic disruption on High Street that ripped up the streets and screwed up parking will be finished by the time you read this. What a horrendous pain in the butt that was! The fiber-optic cables, by the way, are multi-use carriers for a wide variety of communi -cation systems, from phone lines to cable TV. But there's more good news regarding parking and easy access to the Short North, much of it due to the efforts of John Allen and the Short North Business Association's executive director Mary Martineau.

Legislation has been passed to remove the "peak hour no parking" (4 to 6 pm) on the east side of High Street. The signs will be modified accordingly. And, from 6 pm to 8 am, the meters are free! New meters are being installed on West Poplar and Pearl Alley, and better signage is being considered for the public lots.

Whew! All of this is going to make life a lot smoother for customers and merchants alike! And another thing to think about. Isn't it about time the Short North acquired more control over its own destiny!? I think so!

Window Wizardry
Holiday lights most probably will still be twinkling for the January Hop, and as so frequently happens, there are some special events in store for Hoppers. For one thing, the Columbus chapter of the American Institute of Architects will have eight window displays scattered amongst our shops and galleries. Look for them!

By the way, SNBA Holiday Window Winners were: ® Grand Prize went to Loot, and they won a window portrait by Studio 972.® Second Place was picked up by Torso, rewarded with a Getaway Weekend, including a stay at Courtyard by Mariott, dinner at Big Daddy's, and two tix to 2CO's.

® Orbit came in third, and Cookware Sorcerer earned fourth. ® Honorable mentions went to Europia, Planet Pet and the Short North Tavern.

Back to Bombay
Kaizaad Kotwal, our esteemed staff writer and film critic, is taking a leave of absence to visit his family in India. He will probably be gone a couple months, but he's writing overtime to make sure he doesn't miss a single issue. We'll see about that. Anyway, he can always e-mail his stuff to us as our designated Foreign Correspondent. Bon voyage Kaizaad!

Phone Poop
I truly believe that voice mail is having a big effect in slowing down the economy, not to speak of raising our blood pressure. Recently, I tried calling a big new computer store. I needed some new software, a couple hundred dollars worth. Guess what? All I got was a bewildering jungle of damnable alterna-tive choices I was supposed to make - including the language I speak! - After ten minutes of wading through this chaotic quicksand, I still hadn't spoken to a single live person. I gave up in disgust! I'll make do with my old software, so up theirs!

Pizza Plethora
Pizza Gourmet, at 976 N. High Street, is the new crispy kid on the block, run by Jeff Robinson and Casey O'Connor. Formerly located in German Village at 702 S. High Street, the bright and cheerful new store opened a couple of months ago and provides finicky pizza lovers with a difference. They offer dine-in, carry-out, and delivery. Here are a few of the gourmet varieties of pizza:

The Chicken BBQ, The Original White, with a "garlic kick" and red onions, The Broccoli White, The Mexican Fiesta, The Reuben, The Shrimp Scampi

There are plenty of other selections, including their prize-winning pepperoni pizza. Dough is made fresh daily from a secret recipe in Jeff's family. A spaghetti dinner, subs, salads and side dishes are also on the menu. Pizza Gourmet is open every day except Monday. The phone number? I thought you'd never ask! It's 445-0310.

Wendy Whirls

After a lengthy stay at Tapatio's as daytime bar manager, Wendy Cameron has now assumed the same position at Kent Rigsby's K2U, right there in the middle of the Short North at 641 North High Street. Wendy didn't have to remind us that this classy destination has delicious food and an interesting ambi-ance that includes great murals by Kent's father. However, she did remind us that the happy hour at K2U is going to be extended forward to 4:00 pm. On the bar side, they're also going to have a lunch club that will save you a few bucks. So, don't just sit there! Get off your duffs and go in there and say Hello!

Missing Man

Back in the '70s and '80s I had a good friend whose name was John Poeppel-meyer. Then, about ten or fifteen years ago, he dropped out of sight. During the years that I knew him, he worked at Columbus and Southern Electric Co. and Capital University. His wife's name was Kitty, and they had several children. John was well-informed about what was going on in the world and he had a sensational sense of humor. Does anyone out there have a clue as to what happened to him?

Dis n' Data

Bonnie's French onion soup at Frezno's is out of this world. Hearty and flavorful, with lots of mozzarella cheese, it's served in a baked potato!

Get well Dick Ryder! And "Mac" McLane, you're doing great after a close brush!! And everybody else who might be under the weather, get well!

'Til next time, do the best you can with what you've got, and don't die with the music still in you!

(From the December 2001 issue)

Fish Flap
"The one in back, on top," I told the little man behind the fresh fish counter. Then I pointed out the piece of salmon I wanted. It was a beautiful rich red color and just the right size. I kept pointing to it, my finger pressed against the diplay case. Suddenly, with a furtive expression, he glanced over his shoulder and shouted something to a butcher over in the meat department. For a brief moment, I followed his gaze. When I looked back, I swear I saw his hand come up from under the counter and he was already wrap-ing a piece of fish. The one I liked was still there in the display case. "That's not the right one," I hurriedly told him. "I want the one in back, on top." I pointed to it again. So, he reluctantly reached in the case and picked it up. Well, I finally got that beautiful rich red piece of fish, the catch of the day, the one that almost got away, but it took some doing! (By the way, it all happened across the river and into the trees.)

Arch Allure
Construction is under way on what eventually will be a string of 17 arches spanning the Short North portion of High Street from the Convention Center to Fifth Avenue. Each 28-foot high arch will be adorned with 60 fiber-optic light globes. Completion of the $1.5 million project is scheduled for next summer or fall, according to Tim Wagner, Director of the Short North Special Improvement District. The arches are reminiscent of those that adorned downtown High Street 100 years ago.

Perfect Proposal
Joe Theibert, a well-known figure in the Short North, is walking on air these days. He popped the big question to his longtime lady friend, Suzanne Cotton, and she said, "Yes!"

The perfect setting was in the comfort of the fabulous Chateau Frontenac in Quebec City. 'Twas in the evening, at the end of a perfect day. The couple were relaxing in the hotel's lavish cocktail lounge, enjoying the glow of the flickering flames in the huge fireplace. That's when Joe made his move.

It wasn't the first time he had tried. Earlier in the day, he had wanted to propose to Suzanne during a romantic carriage ride, but the driver was talking so much Joe couldn't slip a word in edgewise. Later in the day, he was prepared to make his case again. This time on the boardwalk by the water. Just then, a band struck up Roll Out the Barrel, so the moment was lost.

But as I said, Joe was not to be denied. He finally proposed in that splendidly romantic setting. Suzanne smiled and answered, "Yes, I would love to be your wife."

In a happy daze, Joe fumbled in his pocket for the diamond ring he had purchased in Columbus and slipped it on her finger. Then they kissed. Outside the big picture window nearby, an ocean-going freighter plied its way up the St. Lawrence, heading for the open sea.

Gifts Galore
Oh, the wonders I've seen at Byzantium! Gifts to please a king or queen! There, in that amazing emporium, you will find unique, one-of-a-kind creations that would have astonished and pleased Alice of Wonderland fame. For instance, there are whole menageries

of animals, and birds, too. Carved and crafted from many materials, you'll find cute little puppy dogs and big green frogs, lions and cats, and who knows what else? Did I say cats? You'll find a cataleptic collection of cats - enough cats of all categories to fill a catalog. And, of course, there are a zillion beads and baubles. But, my point is, this store has something for everyone, for men, for women, for children. Don't miss it!

Cover
Rachel Stern's Ice Time, 2001, Watermedia. "Imag(e)inations, a one-woman show of Rachel's work will remain on view at Michael Orr Gallery, 1331 King Avenue, in the Grandview area throughout December. Artist's Reception on Sunday, December 2 from 2-4 pm. Cover Story by Elizabeth Ann James on page 18.

S.N. Sorrow
Our heart goes out to the SNBA's Mary Martineau who survived a tragic automobile accident at the intersection of Warren Street and Summit Street, but lost a good friend and nearly another. Fortunately, Mary didn't sustain any serious injuries. Dear readers, watch that intersection! Cars speeding south on Summit toward downtown, routinely go through the traffic light when it's yellow - and even red &endash; as is alleged to have happened in Mary's case.

Garden Glories
While you're in the Short North, check out Urban Gardener's transition from "Harvest" to "Holiday Greenery." In addition to Christmas trees and boughs of greenery, you'll find a wonderful collec-tion of planters, pots, pottery, and pretty things to brighten up the holidays. Owners Christie Nohle and Ellen Stein have a true gift for showcasing the glories of gardening. The shop is located in the Short North at 940 N. High Street.

Luscious Sushi
Customers at North Market can now enjoy authentic Japanese sushi and tasty salads at Nida's Sushi in the northwest corner of the market building. Nida Sujirapinyokul and Chris Perry have created an attractive sushi bar for eating on the premises. Enjoy innovative dining during hectic holiday shopping. Orders may also be taken out. For those wanting to prepare Japanese food at home, there's a healthy selection of cooking oils, seaweed, rice and noodles, seaweed, spices, and other Japanese groceries, as well as chopsticks, beers, wines, and Sake. Nida can be reached at 228-4470.

shortnorth.com
I don't like to blow my horn, but once in a while I figure it's ok, especially if there's something in it for our readers. I think this is such an occasion.

About a year ago, I received a totally unsolicited e-mail from a man in Brazil. In the brief message he stated that he had been on "tens of thousands" of Web sites from all over the world, but the Short North Gazette was the best he'd ever visited.

Wow! Did I ever feel pumped up about that! I had always thought the Gazette Web site was adequate, maybe pretty good. But that good!? Actually, it's sort of old-fashioned, so-so format-ting, all of it done on Claris HomePage, no professional computer wizards or hired hands helping me along, with the exception of Dan Newman who helped get it off the ground.

What I do do is archive most of the material that appears in the Gazette. That includes columns and feature stories, my own humble efforts, pictures, and everything. You'll find stories about the Sells' Brothers Circus, the Dr. Snook murder trial, letters from Emerson Burkhart, and much more. And we haven't even spoken of our poets. You'll find many of them on the Gazette web site. Go to www.shortnorth.com (and put a bookmark on it.)

Farmer's Foray
Jeannine and Eddy Farmer's photo-graphic exhibit of rare and exotic wildlife at the Michael Orr Gallery in November was a joy to behold. There were 27 tastefully framed pictures, each one a masterpiece of composition and subject matter. There were zebras, cheetahs, gorillas, leopards, elephants, bison, and lots of lions. A virtual menagerie of animals from all over the world.

Bye Burns
Along with everyone else, we were saddened by the recent death of Howard Burns, of "Fred and Howard." Howard, you did many good works while you were here. You will be missed. Keep an eye on your pal Fred!

Dis n' Data
A. J. Drew, owner of Salem West, located at the corner of Fifth and High, says he had a big crowd at the recent Real Witches Ball. Participants came from as far away as Virginia and Canada.

The Pennee Primavera at B. Hamp-ton's is awesome &endash; loaded with sun-dried tomatoes, spinach, black olives, and artichoke hearts, then sautéed in garlic and olive oil.

Welcome to Gourmet Pizza, 976 N. High and Skully's, 1151 N. High.

'Til next time, keep a stiff upper lip, and don't forget to smile. Hard to do, isn't it?! So just remember that American ends in "I can!"

We Won't Forget!

(From the November 2001 issue)

Autumn Artistry

In the fall, I have found that complex events become more elemental, while simple things that I've otherwise take for granted, assume greater importance.

Look again at the sculpted convolu-tions of the clouds, slow-moving country streams, the silvery slant of rain creating a Japanese print, the feathery flakes of a first snowfall.

Bright bangles of bittersweet adorn the edges of country roads, intertwine with the brilliant red of sumac and poison ivy. Plump robins, cedar waxwings and rosy house finches gorge on the ripe fruit of hawthorn and coral berry. Thus the rubric of the season advertises its glory, under the eternal stars, presenting a never-ending chronicle of miracles.

In the aftermath of September 11, such simple truths have become more evident. In nature, we find solace, and we can also discover some symbols of the things we love as surely as we find them in the colors of our flag: Wide blue skies remind us of the freedoms we cherish. Golden fields of grain suggest the blessed bounty this continent provides, while the red autumn leaves become symbolic of heroes blood.

Finally, keep things in perspective. Don't become depressed. Be resolute, but learn to keep your mind limber and relaxed. It works better that way. Don't let the recent atrocities drag you down. Everything will work out, as surely as one season follows another. And, remember, American ends in "I can!!"

Age Anxiety

While I was writing my October Thurber piece dealing with his anxiety about aging, I remembered a poem I had written a long time ago. Digging around, I was able to find it. I only wish Thurber were around so I could give him a copy too. On the other hand, it would proba-bly drive him over the edge. Here it is:

THIRTY-NINE

Thirty-nine really isn't so old, you know,

Short of forty by 365 days or so;

But, still frightening, when doubled, you state:

Twice thirty-nine is seventy-eight.

 

Counted by tens, it's just a sortie,

Ten, twenty, thirty, forty;

Minus one, of course, a year of grace,

One remaining, one for the race.

&endash; t.t.

Shoppers Save

Hurry! There's only a few days left to participate in the Mid Ohio Foodbank's Shopper's Card. Save $20 on purchases all over Central Ohio. A one-day ticket only costs $20, so you can save lotsa money. See Christine at Urban Gardener for more info, but hurry! While you're there, check out their transition from "Harvest" to "Holiday Greenery." Urban Gardener is a participant, of course, in the Shopper's Cards, as are twenty-one other businesses in the Short North.

New Neighbor!

The Gazette would like to extend a hearty welcome to playwright Rebecca Gilman and her husband Charles Harmon who recently moved into Victorian Village. CATCO is presenting one of Gilman's works, Spinning Into Butter through Nov. 11 at the Riffe Center's Studio Two Theatre, 77 S. High St. For ticket information, call 461-0010.

Sharon's Success

The silent auction last month at Sharon Weiss's Antiques and Art on Poplar was a huge success. Forty people bid on various paintings over a seven day span right up to the closing. $14,141 was raised, all of it going to the New York Firefighters 9-11 Disaster Relief Fund. All of the contributing artists donated their work, including Craig Carlisle who initiated the idea with his painting of a NYC fireman. Sharon said "Hearts were open at Antiques & Art on Poplar."

Plethora of Poets

Thursday, November 8 at 7:30 pm, The Umbrella Poets of Columbus will do their stuff at the Lanning Gallery, 990 N. High Street, Poets include our own Elizabeth James, along with Fred Andrle, Mimi Brodsky Chenfeld, Howard Chenfeld, Jean Desy, Douglas Gray, and William Fabrycki. These poets will also bring the Gift of Poetry to the Lennox Center Barnes and Noble on Sunday, December 2 at 2 pm.
The indefatigable Elizabeth James will present a one-woman reading on Friday, November 23 at 7:30 pm in the North-wood Art Center on High Street.

Open Reopens

An Open Book, the GLBT-themed bookstore, lives again. The newly reincarnated enterprise is located at 1002 N. Fourth Street, on the edge of Italian Village and will open its doors November 3, says owner Jim Criswell. New features include an adjacent parking lot and an attached coffeehouse and cafe.

Doo Dah Death

I was saddened to learn of the death last September 14 of Jackie Miller, life partner of Jim Skeens. I didn't know Jackie, but Deb Roberts-Loutzenhiser sent me a lovely tribute she and Jim wrote, which I will share with you:

"We lost our beloved Jackie on Friday. She was surrounded by people who loved her and her and her God. Jackie was a sweet and gentle spirit. A staple of the Short North and Victorian Village for 15 years, she was actively

involved as a disorganizer of the Friends of Doo Dah. Jackie will always be our "Little Doo Dah Elf." The Doo Dah Parade this coming year will have a hole in it without her. Jackie grew up and graduated from college in Mentor-on-the-Lake near Cleveland.

Bar Blessings

There are people out there, I suppose, who don't frequent the bar scene and do their drinking at country clubs or in the privacy of their own home. I suppose there are a lot of people who don't drink at all. And, as Tiny Tim would say, God bless them all! But for a moment, I am going to explain what bars mean to millions of other people, men and women from all walks of life.

A bar is a social center. It's a special place where you can count on meeting some of your best friends on a fairly regular basis. It's also a good spot to make new friends. The bar owner, the bartenders, and the waitpersons, they all become familiar figures in a pleasant equation. It should also be explained that having a few drinks and sharing some time with acquaintances is a big part of making life enjoyable.

A bar is also like a soapopera. There are always ongoing events unfolding, news of births and deaths that friends share with each other. And have no fear, there is also the latest word about broken marriages and relationships, new roman-ces, and a million other things.

We should never forget that the birth of this country was conceived in bars and taverns.

So Long Sam

I've been writing so many obituaries lately, I was thinking I might take it up for a living. Just kidding! Just kidding! Now, darn it, here's another one.

Sam The Cat, our poetry editor for many years, recently exercised his poetic license and kicked the proverbial bucket. Actually, Sam was very sick, hardly eating for weeks on end, wobbling pathetically about, and we had to have him put to sleep. He was 16 years old, which in cat years is way up there. Sam, we're thinking of you. We miss you. Meanwhile, filling in the breach, so to speak, is a sleek young black cat named Pedro who hails from the southwest. He promises to carry on the good works initiated by his predecessor, Sam. "We will continue to provide a voice for the poetic community," says Pedro.

Bar Belle

Our very special Bar Belle of the month is lovely Wendy Cameron, daytime bartender at Tapatio's in the Short North at 491 N. Park Street. Wendy is a music and theatre buff who also likes literature and poetry. She has worked at Tapatio's for about a year and a half. She is assisted in her duties by personable Hostess Valerie McKee and Manager Jeff Robinson.

Dis n' Data

The Greater Columbus Arts Council's annual Public Forum is Thursday, November 15 from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm at the Acock Gallery, Canzani Center, Columbus College of Art and Design.

Curio-a-go-go is adding a second store, a very trendy one, at Polaris. Look for a November opening.

Be sure to visit the Gazette web-site at www.shortnorth.com

'Til next time, remember that "American" ends in "I can!"

.


(From the Oct. '01 issue)

Forgotten Fashion

It took my brother's death to uncover a treasure trove of my mother's old hats. They had been stored for years in a large cardboard box hidden in the recesses of her old bedroom closet. Being a mere man, it took a while for the full significance of this discovery to sink into my male psyche. That's what makes writing this little piece so difficult. How can I be expected to describe the materials, the colors, the textures, the shapes, and the styles of these fashionable flying saucers that have landed so magically out of the distant past? I suppose a woman might describe them as chic, cute, charming, maybe even "precious." All I can say is that they're from distant times, perhaps from the flapper era of the '20s, a couple might even date back to World War I.

This was just one bright episode that occurred during the painful process of clearing out my brother's home after his death last spring. I fully realize that most of us, sooner or later, have to deal with the possessions of the dearly departed. It can be a heart-wrenching process. In this case, my brother's only family was my own, so I divided most of David's possessions among my three children. Thousands of his books and something like 700 LP records went to educational and religious organizations.

Even so, David was a world-class pack rat and there was no alternative but to toss out tons of miscellaneous material that he had collected over much of his lifetime. I swear I could feel him scow-ling as volumes of the University of Chicago Alumni Magazine went into the dumpster. What else was there to do? As for the flying saucers, I still have them. Perhaps one of the local theatre compa-nies might be interested in acquiring them. Then they could fly again, under the bright lights, amidst the drama of unlined faces and light-hearted laughter.

Mimi's Ministry

What a delightful article by Dennis Fiely in a recent edition of the Columbus Dispatch about the wonderfully vivacious &endash; and sometimes controversial &endash; Mimi Brodsky Chenfeld! For those who missed the article, Chenfeld is a child-hood educator, lecturer, teacher, author, and frequent guest on Fred Andrle's segment of WOSU-AM's Open Line. Children love her spontaneous, fun-loving manner. And what a positive attitude towards her job Mimi has. In her words: "We forget the excitement of education, the joy of the journey, the challenge, the adventure, the surprises of discovery, the need for a free spirit to explore, risk and search. If we forget that, we lose our children as lifelong learners."

Editor Expires

I was saddened to learn of the death of Richard Campbell, one-time editor of the now defunct Columbus Citizen-Journal. He began as editor in 1977 and remained through the anguished period of putting out the last issue on December 31, 1985.

During the early '80s, and until the paper's demise, I wrote essays that were frequently published in the Columbus Citizen-Journal, expounding on changing seasons and other subjects that were close to my heart. Sometimes my stories ended up on the front page. Boy, oh boy, was I proud!

Dick was a joy to work with, an accomplished journalist, a scholar, and a gentleman. He will be missed.

Betty's Begins

Once upon a time the space at 680 N. High Street was the Russian Tearoom, then the Lost Planet, and more recently Ricky's Galaxy. Now, it's Betty's, and all for the better. There's an attractive bar, and an overall warm and cozy ambiance. Beer and mixed drinks are served, and the menu is chockful of good things to eat, including crab cakes, black bean hummus sandwiches, salads, a pasta of the day, dessert and more. Betty's is a dream come true for owner Elizabeth Lessner.

Ron Honored

The Columbus Association of Black Journalists (CABJ) will honor Ron Johnson for his outstanding achieve-ments at a luncheon October 5 at the Ohio Union on the OSU campus. Examples of Johnson's photojournalism will be on display at a public reception in his honor on October 4 from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm at the Frank W. Hale Jr. Black Culture Center, 153 W. 12th Avenue. Johnson was a CBS photographer during the Gulf War.

Loves & Hates

I love the little ditty whose first words go like this:

I love little baby ducks,

Old pickup trucks,

Slow moving trains, and rain.

Which reminds me, I hate delivery trucks sitting around, their motors run-ning, polluting the air big time. I love North Market on busy days when crowds of happy shoppers fill the aisles of that wonderful old building.

Age Anxiety

When I was writing my monthly Thurber piece about his problems with growing old, I rememered a a poem I had written a long time ago. Luckily, I found it and now I can share it with you. I only wish he was around so I could give him a copy too. On the other hand, that might have been a bad idea. I It might have driven him over the edge.

THIRTY-NINE

Thirty-nine really isn't so old, you know,

Short of forty by 365 days or so;

But, still frightening, when doubled, you state:

Twice thirty-nine is seventy-eight.

 

Counted by tens, it's just a sortie,

Ten, twenty, thirty, forty;

Minus one, of course, a year of grace,

One remaining, one for the race.

t.t.

Feeder Fiasco

Tina Morgan is having one devil of a time complying with City Code 711.03, which decrees that bird seed falling onto the ground from a feeder is illegal. She has had to contend with a Code Enforce-ment Supervisor snooping around her yard and serving her with a violation notice that read "Placing food (bird seed) in the open (rear yard) causing food to scatter onto the ground and being accessible to rodents." He also took it upon himself to inform Tina that empty seed hulls count as food! Not to speak of some complaining neighbors who seem to hate anything with fur or feathers. And you thought you had problems!

Dis n' Data

Bar Miss of the Month: Patsy St. Clair at Zeno's. A great mixologist, known for lemondrops, marmalades, and Cosmopolitans.

Did you know that the Short North Gazette is delivered to every house from downtown to the campus between North Fourth Street to the Olentangy River.

Sharon Weiss' Antiques and Art on Poplar, now located at 20 W. Lincoln, has an on-going silent auction of art work through Sunday, October 7 at 3 pm. Funds raised will benefit the families

of New York City firemen.

Don't forget the great wine tastings at Strada World Cuisine the first Tuesday of each month. For reservations and more information, call 228-8244. Also check out Strada's Dinner-Theatre packages. Perfect for an unforgettable evening out!

At last! Those luscious big avocados finally got into the stores about the middle of September. And, how about the wonderful California cantaloupes that arrived about the same time!

'Til next time, keep your powder dry!

From the September 2001 Issue)

Big Brother

Oh boy, I've really done it this time! I'm talking about a big time serious run-in with the law. If you don't hear from me for a while, it's probably because I'm on the lam. What did I do? Gawd, I'm ashamed to tell you. You've got to realize, I'm in big trouble. I mean like a Federal case. Worse, maybe, if that is possible. I wouldn't be surprised if Attorney General John Ashcroft might be on my tail. Maybe that new guy that's head of the FBI, although that doesn't worry me quite as much because they have a heap of trouble themselves!

Ok! Ok! It's time to 'fess up. I don't know how to tell you this when you probably thought I might be a halfway decent citizen. Now I'm trembling in fear that my face might go up on the post office wall. I'm glad my mother isn't here to see me in this jam. Ok. Here it is. I had a naughty thought. That's what I did, so I guess I should save the taxpayers a lot of money and turn myself in. Or maybe hide out in the Hocking County hills until things cool down.

But maybe things won't ever cool down. You know how these prosecutor-type bloodhounds are. They don't know when to quit. Nowadays, they'll come after you for what you're thinking. A couple of other things need to be said. I suspect several people I know of being witches and heretics. So light those bonfires. And I can easily prove that our libraries are full of books with dispicable and vulgar writings in them. So, keep the fires burning brightly.

Highflight

My good friend Tim Middleditch, a native of Vancouver, British Columbia, and I share a love of good poetry. We have frequently discussed how wartime seems to produce a number of outstand-ing poets. Thus, we rediscovered and relished talking about a wonderful sonnet written by John Gillespie Magee Jr., an 18-year-old American who joined the Royal Canadian Air Force at the onset of World War II. He was flying a Spitfire when he was killed in action during a dogfight on December 11, 1941. He was 19 years old. Here's the poem. It's titled Highflight:

 

Oh, I have slipped the surly
bonds of earth
And danced the skies on
laughter-silvered wings;
Sunward I've climbed, and
joined the tumbling mirth
Of sun-split clouds - and
done a hundred things
You have not dreamed of -
wheeled and soared
and swung
High in the sunlit silence.
Hov'ring there,
I've chased the shouting wind
along, and flung
My eager craft through footless
halls of air.
Up, up the long, delirious,
burning blue
I've topped the windswept
heights with easy grace
Where never lark,
or even eagle flew.
And, while with silent,
lifting mind I've trod
The high untrespassed
sanctity of space,
Put out my hand,
and touched the face of god.

SNPAA Survives

The Short North Performing Arts Association (SNPAA)_ will once again be an active presence on the Columbus concert scene. After a one year hiatus, the board of trustees voted to continue all projects, including the Short North Chamber Music Series, the Short North Folk Sampler, and SNPAA's after-school music programs for inner-city youth residing in the Short North area.

Last year, Steve Rosenberg, founder and General Manager, announced his intention to step down from his post after 17 years of service. He has now agreed to stay on as Artistic Director and is in the process of selecting artists for the upcoming season.

The Chamber Music Series, a Colum-bus institution since 1983, will have a new home at the Elevator Brewery and Draught Haus, 161 N. High Street. Artists and venues for the Folk Sampler are currently being selected. The inner-city youth programs, including the Short North Youth chorus and after school music workshops, will continue in partnership with the Godman Guild, a United Way agency.

Dream Damage

Did you know that an untoward event in a dream, like tripping or stubbing your toe, can lead to actual physical discomfort in real life? Let me give you an example. Not too long ago I had a dream in which I was running through a beautiful spring-time meadow chasing birds when I came to a meandering little stream, whereupon I took a mighty jump but didn't quite make it to the other side. As I landed in the shallow water just short of the other side, I braced my legs for the coming splashy impact, and - OWWWW! - I woke up to the excruciating pain of a world-class cramp that had me biting my lip. Overtime.

Loves & Hates

I hate red spider mites &endash; and ants. I love late summer roadside wildflowers. I hate pennies. I love all the black-eyed Susans and her relatives that I see in so many front yards this season. I hate dust. I love love. I hate spam with attach-ments. I love good music played at a reasonable sound level. I hate blaring music and I hate boom-boxes. If you don't like my loves and hates, you can suck my stem-cell.

Dis n' Data

Bar Miss of the Month: Lovely Nikki Porter has worked at the Short North Tavern for almost two years and has loved every minute of it. Nikki is a graduate from guess where? You guessed right! OSU! Joe Theibert, who has been known to go to the Tavern, told us a good one. When Joe asks a friend if they've played any golf, he says, "Dod you spank the apple today?" Is that class, or what!

You can now pick up a copy of the Gazette at the new State Library right off North Fourth Street.

My good friend Dick Stevens, owner of the Elevator, was elated to hear on TV news that a beer a day for women and two beers a days for men was very healthful. "I knew it all along," he grinned. The Elevator, by the way, has two 19th century pool tables, one that came from the original Bott Brothers restaurant where the Elevator currently stands. There are also several dart boards, which are free for patrons to use.

Last month, Battelle's Dan Muko had a great time when he went to a '70's party reunion in his Pennsylvania hometown of Sewickley, a suburb of Pittsburgh. Over 200 friends and classmates attended.

It's always good to run into Jan Rothe now and then at Aspen Inn. She's one good-looking lady!

William Sands' ethniciti gallery African artifacts is one of the Short North's newest treasures.

CHARLES H. GAMBILL

(1951 - 2001)

A successful life is not necessarily measured by how long one lives, but more importantly by the "fullness of the cup."

Charles H. Gambill, who departed this earthly vale August 14, 2001, was fortunate in this respect. His cup was full. He was a devoted father, husband, family man, naturalist, artist, teacher, and airman. He was all of these things and more, and yet he filled each role with ease and competence. Equally important, and what endeared him to his many friends, he was a person of bountiful optimism and good cheer.

I knew Charles, or Buddy as his family called him, through our shared interest in birds and love of nature. He would frequently call me when he had seen a rare species or something unusual. I would often run into him in the vicinity of the Greenlawn Avenue Dam, a local birding hot spot. And we shared something else special. Charles illustrated both editions of my book, Birding in Ohio, published by Indiana University Press. His drawings brought my books to life. One of my favorites, the pair of Double-crested Cormorants is shown above.

Charles was a world-class birder. He visited many countries in his pursuit of rare and colorful birds and amassed a life list of well over 3,000 species. Many of the trips he took in Ohio to garner 328 species were in "Old Gray," his 1987 station wagon, which had over 300,000 miles on it when Charles said good-bye. His passionate love of birds fit in perfectly with his vocation, an art teacher in the Columbus Public Schools. At various times, Charles taught at the following schools: Berry Middle School, South High School, Eastmoor High School, and Linden-McKinley High School. He was a fine arts graduate of Capital University.

Selfless in service to others, Charles was eternally youthful, never too tired for some fresh exertion or to share a new adventure. During his lifetime, he experienced thrills of discovery few have been privileged to encounter: Deep in a tropical rain forest perhaps, hearing the haunting cry of a bird seldom seen by human beings, then for a moment to catch sight of its splendid colors as it disappears deeper into the darkness. In this life, there are many ways to touch the face of God.

 

- Tom Thomson

 


(From the August 2001 issue)

Antz Anxiety

Ain't it amazin' how ants can invade your home, trek through room after room as they sniff out some infinitesimal morsel of food you overlooked, say, on the kitchen countertop!

These trips in search of daily provisions must be monumental under-takings considering the small size of the participants. An average room would be as big as Grand Central Station to these little buggers and a heck of a hike to even contemplate. How they scamper when I spot them! How they run in all directions to escape my menacing shadow as it falls across their path!

After seeing the movie Antz a couple of years ago, I have twinges of conscience as I squish out their little guts with a folded-up paper towel. "Gotcha!" I growl with satisfaction; and, chances are, I'm already going after another one who is frantically trying to flee.

The little guy I just disemboweled might have been a revered veteran of many such forays, maybe a leader of great distinction in the ant community.

Here comes some more of 'em! Squish! Squash! Smash! Oh, my gosh! How many notables of the ant world have I just sent to their maker? An Admiral Byrd? A George Washington or Honest Abe? Another thing. How am I expected to tell the guys from the gals? Or the adults from the children? Am I expected to practice chivalry in situations like this! You laugh, but it could be true. If you had seen Antz, you would know what I'm talking about.

"What have I wrought?" I feel like Attila the Hun as I survey the carnage around me. But, then, I think, "What would they have wrought if I hadn't snuffed out their little lives?

Memory Motif

"Legendary Tales" this month is mostly about High Street in the campus area, but also extends a bit south into what we now call the Short North. The year? The late '40s, after World War II. I tried to capture the feel of the area, some of the sights and sounds, and I could think of no better way of doing this than listing a lot of the shops and other businesses. Many of them carry their own special memories for me.

A few days later, when I sat down to do my monthly stint on "The Thurber Connection," I decided to use the same technique. The circumstances I was describing were perfect for this method: James' and Helen's return to Columbus in 1946 to help James' mother, Mame, celebrate her 80th birthday. So, I tried to provide just a sample of what downtown Columbus was like in 1946. As you will see, it was quite a lively place.

Historic Honors

The former Jeffrey Manufacturing Company office building, at the NE corner of East First Avenue and North Fourth Street, has been added to the National Register of Historic Places. The listing includes the office building constructed in 1924 and a research and development facility to the north that was completed in 1946.

Founded in 1876, the company soon became a pioneer in coal mining equipment and ended up the largest such manufacturer in the world. The three-story building was conceived by Stone

& Webster, a Boston construction and engineering firm and features Flemish bond brickwork, a pattern in which every other brick has the narrow side exposed. The interior has a spacious lobby, a boardroom with panelled walls and a vaulted ceiling, a stone fireplace and original artwork commemorating the founder.

Mannequin Mania

How about those ritzy, fritzy manne-quins that have been popping up all over town!? Well, eight of them are hanging around the Short North at least 'til August 14. If you should run into one of them, be sure to say hello. They can be found at Functional Furnishings, Gallery V, Antiques & Art on Poplar, Moda Veritie, The Ohio Art League, Mauritz Gallery, Waldo's on High, and the Riley Hawk Glass Gallery.

A group of outstanding male Colum-bus artists have "dressed up" these mannequins for a fascinating mobile art exhibit that will culminate in a benefit auction for the Columbus College of Art & Design Student Scholarship Fund and The Ohio State University Historic Costume/Textiles Collection. Oh, lest you forget, the Mannequin Makeover Auction will be held from 6 to 8 pm on Wednesday, August 15 at CCAD's Canzani Center. Call 437-7576 for tickets and information.

Ensemble Evolves

Red Herring Theatre Company has changed its name to Red Herring Theatre Ensemble. Perhaps more significant than the name change was the change in leadership. Michael Herring, who founded the company in 1993, resigned and is being replaced by Artistic Director Maureen Ryan and Managing Director Nancy Fox Christos. Michael will continue to hold a consulting position. Permanent home for the group is at the Short North Playhouse, nicknamed the Mona Lisa Theatre, 736 N. Pearl Street.

Organic Outing

Dragonfly neo-v, the one-of-a-kind gourmet vegan restaurant located at 247 King Avenue just off Neil Avenue, is hosting Columbus' only all-organic farmers market every Saturday afternoon from noon to 3 pm. The event will continue through the late fall. The Old Woodsman Mushroom Co., Wes Baker's Organic Acres, Toad Hill Farms, Just This Farm, and Fresh Fruits are some of the participants.

There will also be an adjoining crafts fair in Dragonfly's neo-v art gallery and cooking demonstrations using the fresh produce trucked in by the farmers. Dragonfly will contribute fresh baked breads and pastries for the occasion.

The restaurant will be open for lunch during the market hours and feature many of the organic fruits and vegetables on their menu. Part of the proceeds from the market will benefit WCBE and Choices for Victims of Domestic Violence.

Dis n' Data

So long, Joseph A. Merrill. You were not only a great scholar and a gentleman, but a great OSU fan as well. We will miss you, Joe!

The Greek Festival, held at the Greek Orthodox Cathedral on the corner of Goodale and High Street, is August 31 thru September 3. The Victorian Village Home Tour will be September 23. Any volunteers? Call Gavin at 228-2912.

Congratulations to Lee Ann McGuire and Elizabeth Buchenroth for their successful photography exhibit at the ROYGBIV Gallery in July. And congratulations to Larry Tuten, recently appointed General Manager of the classy and beautiful Elevator Brewery and Draught Haus., 161 N. High Street. And, while we're handing out bouquets, kudos to the guys and gals that keep Goodale Park in such great shape.

There's going to be a new pizza place in the 900 block of North High Street.

We're happy to report that you can now pick up a copy of the Gazette at the Lennox Barnes and Noble.

Get well, Dana. Knit those bones, Milly! Amd all the rest of you, travel light, and throw away those cigarettes. They're killing you. So, just do it!

(From the July 2001 Issue)

Voice Vexation

Oh, how I hate voice mail!. With a passion! Especially the asinine, endless repetition of choices thrown at me by some phony phone voice representing some big utility company or another or, worse yet, some big retail store.

Press one for this, press two for that, press three for something else. Endlessly it goes on and on &endash; to the point of insanity. By the time I get a human voice on the other end of the line, if I'm that lucky, I'm ready to chew nails. Give me the likes of Lily Tomlin back in a more innocent, more civilized, saner age.

All of this new-fangled crap is called progress? Are these so-called electronic innovations meant to make our lives easier and more pleasant, or are they solely intended to save money for the big guys? I think you know the answer to that without my telling you. In the meantime, we are bamboozled and brutalized by this sadistic technological torture.

Here's another thought. Maybe voice mail is what hell or Dante's Inferno is really like. Press one for the scalding steam room. Press two for the fiery coals. Press three for the racks. Press four to speak to one of our young corporate punks. Press five to talk to one of our hapless underpaid service representatives..I would like to press some slack-jawed corporate dandy's nose flat to his face, that's what I would like to press! And by the way, Why don't they print their frickin' phone numbers in BIGGER TYPE and in more prominent locations on their invoices? The way it is, you have to spend five minutes looking for the right number to call.

Galleries Galore

The Lindsay Gallery has moved from Arlington to 986 North High Street, right next door to Sam the Cat's favorite food supplier, Planet Pet. And just a few doors away from the sophisticated new 972 Gallery.

The Lindsay Gallery will be dedicated to folk, outsider, and visionary art, according to Gallery owner Duff Lindsay. "The main focus will be on contemporary Ohio artists such as Levent Isik, Tom Hay, Smoky Brown, and greats of the past like Elijah Pierce, William Hawkins, and Popeye Reed," Lindsay says. But, the gallery will offer more. "We'll also have the biggest names in this genre from around the country." The grand opening is scheduled for September, but they will be open for Hop days until then. In the meantime, contractor Greg Klosek will be getting the space into tip-top shape.

The 972 Gallery is already open and is currently featuring a stunning photo-graphic show titled "Inside/Outside: Two Views of Breast Cancer" with photos by Jo McCulty and Ted Rice. Beginning July 18, "Vacation Pictures," will present photos by the owner, Kathy D. Bernat, who received her Master of Art degree from OSU and a Master of Fine Art Degree from the San Francisco Art Institute. The gallefy will have rotating exhibits and is open to all media. Hours are Wed. thru Sat. from noon to 5 pm.

Starbuck Study

Whence the name Starbuck, the aggressive new coffee chain in town? Are there real people named Starbuck? Well, as a matter of fact, there are. The current issue of the Columbus telephone directory lists eight Starbucks. Shucks. We were thinking all along that the national Java chain was named after the Starbuck in Herman Melville's Moby-Dick. That Starbuck was the God-fearing first mate on Captain Ahab's ship, the Pequod. We just wish that ol' ivory-legged Ahab would come back and order Starbuck's to open their doors to alterna-tive papers. That would be better than chasing whales. And, while he's at it, maybe he could row his dingy over to Barnes & Noble and tell them to do the same thing.

Justice Done

State and federal executions have been in the news a lot recently, so here's some trivia connected to the days when many of these events occurred right on our doorstep at the old Ohio Penitentiary.

Ohio's electric chair, sometimes called "Old Sparky" sent 312 men and women to their deaths. The chair was first installed in 1897 and replaced a gallows when hanging was the means of execution. Its inventor was Dr. David Rockwell from Milan, Ohio.

One of the most unusual stories associated with "Old Sparky" was the execution of Charles Justice on November 9, 1911. Justice had helped build and install the chair while he was an inmate at the pen. He served his time, was released and, wouldn't you know it, he returned, this time on a murder rap, and perished in the chair he had helped construct.

The last person electrocuted at the Spring Street Hotel was Donald Rein-bolt, who was put to death in 1963.

My friend John Switzer of the Columbus Dispatch, a daily paper, and I were working on this item at the same time. His version saw the light of day before mine.

Good Grub

John Allen's Short North Tavern has a nifty new menu listing a lot of yummy bar grub. Beside all the stuff you would expect like burgers, wings and subs, there are tasty quesadillas, a hummus dip, a bbq pork sandwich, a couple of burritos, a meatloaf sandwich, and a lot more to satisfy ravenous appetites.

Additional good grub, this time from south of the border. Sabor Mexicano is the new Latino food vendor at the North Market. Food is freshly prepared, flavorful, and modestly priced. On the menu are refritos, chile, tacos, burritos, quesadillas and other appetizing entrees. Desserts include a nice Mexican custard and fried ice cream.

Jazz and All That

 

Here are some upcoming dates for the Short North Sunday Jazz Series. All concerts are in the Goodale Park Gazebo at noon.

• July 8: Madrugada.

• July 15: Vaughn Wiester's Jazz Orch.

• July 29: World Trio Jazz

• Aug. 5: Gene Walker's Band

B. Hampton's

B. Hampton's Cathy Capuano recently threw a great going away party for longtime bartender Zeke Bedzyk. Shown above are (l. to r.) Bartender and lawyer Scott Wiesman, Zeke, and Zeke's brother, Jon.

Dragonfly Delights

Magdiale Wolmark and Cristin Austin, co-owners of the Dragonfly recently renovated the space adjoining their chic new-v cuisine restaurant into a fabulous banquet and party room featuring a futuristic art-installation of Marina del Rosario Huang. Her eye-catching creation is titled "Pegs and Holes." It's wonderful! It lights up in many different ways. It's a changeable mood-setter, a mind-bender. It can transport you around the universe and back in nothing flat. The room is perfect for meetings. There is even an elevated space at one end with a speaker's platform. And the food? You've probably already heard that Dragonfly has been lauded as one of the top ten culinary destinations in Columbus. And Cristin informs us that a new menu will be introduced very shortly.

 



(From the June 2001 Issue)
Goodbye, David

David Drury Thomson
(1917 - 2001)

It is with a heavy heart that I have to report that my brother, David Thomson, passed away on May 13. He was 83 years old and had recently endured surgery for oral cancer. Born in Chicago, he lived most of his life in Columbus, attended Grandview grade schools, and was in the first graduating class of the University School. Later, he graduated in philo-sophy from The University of Chicago.

During his lifetime, David had been associated in various editorial positions with the American Bar Association, The Ohio State University, The University of Chicago, and the Mershon Institute. For quite a few years now, in his semi-retirement, we relied on his great knowledge to research and proof all the copy that went into the Gazette.

At the beginning of his short illness, David had instructed me to inform several old friends of his plight. They included Howard Harrison of Berkeley, California, and Frank and Eleanor Kraman, of Kettering, Ohio, who attended the funeral.

The Rt. Rev. Abbot John-Cassian Lewis, SSB of the Saint Pachomios Monastery, conducted the service which was at the Shaw-Davis Funeral Home. I think everyone present was spellbound by his beautiful rendition of Gregorian chants and his inspirational words. Then the heavens opened up. Literally! Great bolts of lightning sizzled down from a suddenly darkened sky. Thunder crashed and reverberated as if ushering in Armageddon. Torrents of rain fell. The lights in the chapel blinked on and off as the power faltered. I said to my kids, "It's like a movie!" To myself I was thinking, "That's just like my brother to make a dramatic exit!"

Days later came the painful job of vacating his apartment. I was David's only surviving relative so the job fell to me and my children. David was the consummate pack rat - but with a difference. His possessions were top quality and esoteric. Bookcases in every room, containing hundreds and hundreds of books on philosophy, history, theology, music, and art, overflowing into the kitchen, even the basement. Many of the books contained reviews or articles about the author. Untold numbers of CDs, tapes, and records, mostly of classical music, were neatly boxed and stored throughout his apartment. To be disposed of were countless mementos, trinkets, art objects, photographs and correspondence, some of it many years old.

When David's surgeon called to express his shock at David's death, the immediate cause of which was cardio-pulminary arrest, I explained to him how my brother dreaded the days ahead, returning to the hospital for treatment: radiation, chemotherapy, and all of that. When I mentioned it to David, he shook his head and scowled before grabbing his notepad and scribbling: "I don't want to go back!"

On the phone, talking to the doctor, I said, "In effect, I think David engineered his own escape." His last words, found written on his notepad on the bedside table were "I think I will go to sleep now.

Key Quiz
Like everybody else, I suppose, I have a key ring. On my main key ring there are five smaller rings and twelve keys. Two keys are to my apartment, one big key is for my car, one little key is for my mailbox, and another key is for the laundry room. The long skinny key might be for a briefcase or something but I'm not sure. The others? Your guess is as good as mine! Gazooks! Am I missing out on something? Truman Capote wrote Other Rooms, Other Voices. I could write, Hey! I have the key!

Key rings are great. They give me a sense of security. They open doors. Sometimes I like to jingle them. But don't you hate it when one key gets stuck in another key's little ring and it takes a couple of minutes and a lot of cussin' to get it out? This is especially critical when you're trying to get in your house because you have to pee real bad. It can also be annoying when you want to get into your car and the key is all jammed up. I forgot to mention, they can be a real pain in the butt when you're sitting on them.

Familiar Faces
It was good to run into a couple of old friends recently. One was Ray Johnson whom I saw for the first time in many years after making a pilgrimage to his famous seafood market downtown at 111 East Main Street. Another was Blaine Sickles who has retired from the Nationwide Insurance Company where he once was a vice-president.

Another old friend, Russ Finneran, surprised me when he walked into Zeno's one evening while I was there. Russ is a retired attorney, and I could best describe him as the consummate Irishman. Russ started singing years back when his mother sat down at the piano and played her favorite songs.

Over the years, his clear tenor voice has rung out many a time at the old Hoover's Restaurant on East Main Street and the Clock Restaurant downtown, places where Buddy Cotter used to tickle the ivories. He also entertained folks out at the old Dell Restaurant when Janet Obrien played at the piano bar.

In German Village where he had his office for 28 years, patrons often heard Russ singing at Deibel's and Plancks, where he was sometimes accompanied by Esther Craw. Russ was a long-time member of the Shamrock Club, the Ancient Order of the Hibernians, and for a while he was Chairman of the St. Patrick's Day Parade!

You guessed it, the night he came in Zeno's, he belted out a couple of songs, his voice as strong as ever.

Architect Awarded
Frank L. Elmer, long-time resident of Italian Village and a principal at Lincoln Street Studio, an architectural firm located at 45 E. Lincoln Street, was recently named a Fellow by the American Institute of Architects. This honor is awarded to members who have made contributions of national significance to the profession. Elmer was awarded his fellowship in Urban Design.

Group at Gallery
"Eclectic Vistas" at the MPX Gallery - Mark Cheadle, Donna Dreher, Jennifer Dunlap, Daniel Floss, Will Gibson, Dan Grose, and Ken Snow used larger than 35mm cameras to create this special exhibit of creative photographic images.

The pictures will be on display at the Gallery, 3292 North High Street, through June 30. One or more of the photographers will be at the gallery every Saturday from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm for the duration of the show.

Nature Notes
Starlings are the very common black-colored birds with short tails that we see everywhere &endash; on utility wires, feeding on our lawns, scavenging in back alleys, around dumpsters, and fast food places.

The name "starling" means little star and is derived from the spangled appear-ance of the somewhat buffy plumage in the fall. By early spring, the birds have become glossy black.

The species is not native to North America. They were first introduced into this country when sixty of the birds were released in New York's Central Park in 1890, and forty more in 1891. They were soon nesting. In fact, the first nest was discovered under the eaves of the American Museum of Natural History.

By 1916, the first starling was spotted in Ohio, and by the late 1920s, thousands were being seen in a single day. By 1959, they had virtually colonized the entire U.S. and southern Canada. Starlings are carniverous; they eat just about anything. Although considered pesty when they gather in huge flocks, they are mostly beneficial to mankind because they eat such things as cutworms and weevils. In late spring, they are fond of cherries. But then, who isn't?

Dis 'N' Data
Check out Comfest. It's a lot of fun. And speaking of fun, don't forget the DooDah Parade on Wednesday, July 4!

Too bad Ace Gallery had to fold up shop. They've been around a long time and displayed some outstanding work.

Beginning June 7 and extending through August, many galleries and craft shops in the Short North will remain open on Thursday evenings until 8:30 pm. This will be the perfect opportunity to leisurely visit Columbus' Street of Dreams. Soak up the talented artwork, enjoy a cool beverage, have a wonderful meal at a great restaurant!

Heard at Aspen Inn: While in Florida a while back, Bob Soronen watched a frustrated Great Blue Heron trying to fillet a large fish. Finally it gave up and laid the fish at Bob's door for him to do the job. A few minutes later, the mighty smart heron retrieved the fish and proceeded to have his dinner.

Speaking of waterways, James Hill tells me he's happy as a river otter now that summer's here and he's spending more time on his houseboat over on the Muskhimham River.

Goodbye David! Goodbye Steve McLauchlan! We'll be missing you!

Til next time, try to keep your equilibrium in a topsy-turvy world.


(From the May 2001 issue)

Clock Klutz
Well, I really did it this time, but luckily, hardly anyone found out what a hopeless klutz I can be. The nature of my crime? I forgot to Spring Forward! You know, last month. The time change. I totally forgot about it. As a matter of fact, I went two-and-a-half days before it finally dawned on me that something was seriously out of kilter. It was just me and the Indiana dairy farmers, I suppose. Oh, there were a lot of little clues along the way. I just never grasped the significance of them. For instance, why was it that one of my favorite bars had become so crowded so early in the evening? Or, how about this. I considered it rather strange that The Price is Right was in a different time slot, but I gave it only a passing thought. When I saw the mailman making his rounds way ahead of time, I simply thought there must be an energetic new guy on the route. Even the birds were singing off schedule &endash; maybe even off-key as if they were unhappy about the whole thing. Well, who can blame them for being disgusted; birds and animals don't go messin' around with the time. Gee! I'm beginning to sound like an old conservative hedgehog. Anyway, nothing sank in. Talk about marching to a different drummer! Henry David Thoreau would have been proud of me. Finally, on the following Wednesday at the bank, I had a face-to-face confrontation with a big no nonsense wall clock. I swear it was scowling, and it was wagging its hands at me in a most uncomplimentary manner. I finally got the message!

Gustatory Gala
All kinds of fun, entertainment and appetizing displays of food will be on hand for the Apron Gala at the North Market Saturday, May 19. The market celebrates its 125th anniversary this year, so this event promises to be extra dynamic. In addition to everything else, there will be culinary demonstrations, raffle prizes, music, and much more. Proceeds from the event support the Market in many ways. Tickets for this culinary celebration are $45 each. The North Market is located right near the New Arena at 59 Spruce Street. Call 463-9664 for information.

Granite Garden
How about a world-class sculpture garden (or sculpture trail) in Goodale Park? Wouldn't that be elegant? All beautifully landscaped, of course, with plenty of little hills, valleys and meanderings. In the distance, through the trees, the buildings of downtown would be the perfect backdrop! I'll bet there are plenty of corporations and foundations around town who would love to donate money for the acquisition and preservation of such solid works of art.

Learning Loss
What a darn shame. After 27 years, the Creative Activities Program at OSU has gone belly up! The reasons: The program was operating in the red and there were no funds to subsidize the program. Also, there was a need for extensive renovations to the Ohio Union basement where the classes were held, which would have been an expensive project. I taught classes in the CAP program for many years and met many wonderful people and, hopefully, I was able to pass on to them some of my knowledge of wildlife and birds.

By the way, Upper Arlington has a Lifelong Learning Program that is quite similar, and some of the CAP instructors might find their way there. To get in touch, call (614) 583-5333, or go to www.ua-ohio.net

Wetland Welcome
The groundbreaking of a new state-of-the-art and visitor-friendly Wetland Research and Education Building at OSU's Buckeye Swamp will be held from 1 to 3 pm on Friday, May 11. The 30-acre swamp, the brain-child of Dr. William Mitsch, is located at 352 Dodridge Road, just north of Chemical Abstracts. OSU President W. E. "Brit" Kirwan will speak at 1:30 pm. There will also be a tour of the wetlands, entertainment and refreshments. You can visit the wetland Website at: http://swamp.ag.ohio-state.edu

200th Hop
The 200th Gallery Hop should be a blast! Among the many special events planned, look for: Urban Croquet, the SNAFU Parade, The Victorian Village Cinco De Mayo Party and Scavenger Hunt, CD101 live at Brian Boru's, Arts Impact Middle School steel drum band, Jammin' with Junk and the SNAFO paraders playing next to Acme Art Co., The AIMS show, "The Price of Freedom, at the Short Stop Teen Center, and lots more!

Nature Notes
The first Ruby-throated Humming-birds usually show up during the first week or two of May. Although they aren't as common in the city as in rural areas - especially the hills - they do occur. A hummingbird feeder and bright colored flowers will attract them.

Hardly bigger than a human thumb, hummers are amazing little birds. The males have the shimmering red throat - although at certain angles it might look black. Having spent the winter in Central or South America, they cross the Gulf of Mexico and wing their way all the way to Ohio and beyond.

In 1936, Dr. Harold E. Edgerton, of MIT, using high-speed motion picture cameras, determined that a Ruby-throated Hummingbird completes 55 wing beats per second when hovering, 61 when backing up, and 75 when in level flight. Am I hallucinating? How many wing beats a second did he say? How could that be possible!

A hummingbird in captivity might live 10 years, but an individual in the wild would be lucky to survive three. They crash into buildings, towers, and plate glass windows. Thousands often perish during stormy weather while they are migrating over the Gulf. Yet death goes out of its way and wears many disguises in its efforts to snare these tiny gems. Praying mantises have been spotted saying grace over newly killed hummers. Others are snared by the lightning-quick tongues of frogs or hopelessly trapped in spider webs. Some have even been impaled on flowering thistles. It's a spooky life out there for hummingbirds - and just about everything else. So watch out!

CII Challenge
If you live in Central Ohio and have recorded a music video, written a book, are working on a community project or a campaign that helps people, or anything else that's sensational and worth putting on the screen, you are invited to write a short letter to: The Producer, Columbus Inter-Racial International, PO Box 292139, Columbus, OH 43229. Include your name and phone number so they can get back to you. CII is a new show hosted and produced by Hilton Fyle on Community Channel 21.

Trash Trek
A team effort by almost a dozen organizations will kick off a concerted trash pick-up effort Sunday, May 20. If you're interested, meet at 12 noon in the Fireproof Storage parking lot. At 3 pm, all participants are invited to Good-ale Park to soak up some of the good sounds emanating from the concert sponsored by The Columbus Musicians Homeless Awareness Concert. If you have any questions, call Mary Martineau at 228-8050.

Highway Hysteria
The bad news is the recently opened Route 315. Talk about user-unfriendly! This costly boondoggle should never have happened. When it's completely finished, how would you like to be tool-ing along one of the curvy rollercoaster-like extensions and have a big 18-wheeler looming up behind you?! Woulda been super good material for Alfred Hitchcock!

Dis 'N' Data
Dr. Daniel J. Koch would like to remind residents and visitors alike that Columbus Eyeworks at Fourth and High carries a complete line of cool frames at a reasonable cost.
More on the supermarkets moving their merchandise around in the middle of the night: Recently I was looking for English Muffins in their accustomed place and guess what was staring me in the face? A shelf full of pampers! Speaking of supermarkets, I'm happy to say that Big Bear finally has a delicious new brand of buttermilk - a staple item in my fridge.
The divider strip "islands" along Neil Avenue look very nice now that they've been planted and landscaped!
That's all for now. Be good and try to take a hike. If you have time, read a book or see a good movie - make time for it!

(From the April 2001 issue)

Manual Mambo
Oh, no, I've done it again! Just when I thought I'd gotten some law and order into my life, I lose the manual to my telephone answering machine!

Figured it was about time I started accessing my incoming messages when I'm out, and I seemed to recall instruc-tions about a special code number or something but couldn't remember how to go about it. Thought I knew right where the manual was, there on top of the microwave where I could swear I'd put it. I did find manuals for the toaster oven, the microwave (of course) and a CD Radio Cassette-Corder, among others. But no answering machine.

Well, I naively thought, no better place than the kitchen junk drawer for more of that, so I eagerly dove in and what a treasure trove I found! Manuals for the Caller ID, an old Trimline phone, the coffeemaker, the blender (ancient), the previous answering machine, my Eureka Mighty Mite, a tabletop fountain (long gone), even a bird feeder manual!

So on I went from room to room, closet to closet, receiving nothing but mounting frustration. Oh, don't think I didn't find more manuals. I found plenty! And you can probably guess how this story ends. I won't be retrieving any messages while out on the road as of yet. Anyhow, I think I found out why they call them "manuals." It's because it takes a lot of manual labor to track them down - if indeed one ever does!

Speakers Schedule
Upcoming April and May speakers sponsored by the Columbus Metropolitan Club Forums include:
Rev. David A. Vandyke, same sex marriages; Elaine Roberts, Columbus Airport Authority; Jerry Jurgensen, CEO, Nationwide; Christopher Jones, wetlands protection; Jack Hanna, wild animal adventures; Donn Vickers, adventures at Thurber House. Forums are held at the Columbus Athletic Club, 136 E. Broad Street. Call (614) 841-8742 for dates and other info.

Nature Notes
The flowering of deciduous trees is one of the prettiest spectacles of spring-time. The Short North, the city and the countryside are transformed into one uninterrupted arboretum. I love it!

When multitudes of blossoms bedeck the trees, it always reminds me of A.E. Housman's poem, "Loveliest of Trees," in which he reflects on the wondrous beauty of cherry trees "hung with bloom along the bough," and the short span of years we are allotted to view them.

Around these parts, the maples lead the parade. First are the silver maples, followed by the red maples, then everything else gets in on the act until it's almost summer and the catalpa trees put on their belated show. If you haven't noticed all this going on all around you, open your eyes. Be born into the spiritof springtime!

Perfect Produce
The fruits and vegetables in our super-markets have been absolutely delicious here lately. Grapefruit are large and flavorful. Oh, those ruby-reds! Poetry could be written about these scrumptious, juicy offerings! How about those huge oranges! They're so big you can eat them like grapefruit. And vegetables: Broccoli and cauliflower have been especially good - and reasonably priced. I have gotten so I buy the bags of pre-pared salad greens. Not bad and saves a lot of work. I also like the little plastic bags of shredded carrots. Great for salads!

Rye Reading
If you've been reading this column over the past year or so, you probably remember my mentioning
J. D. Salinger. You know, he's the guy who wrote The Catcher in the Rye. I mentioned that I had read a couple of books about him, one by a disgruntled former girlfriend, another by his daughter Anyhow, I sorta got caught up in his life and the other day I got the bright idea to put J. D. on our mailing list. We're of the same generation, both combat vets, been around the block a couple of times.

DooWac Delight
It was Zoo Day at DooWac a few weeks ago. A young Cheetah, a Clouded Leopard playmate, and a tropical bird from the Columbus Zoo had a field day romping (and flapping) around the popular hair salon. Needless to say, all of this was to the delight of patrons and passersby. Looks like
Jim Morris and Brad Sutton (right) have succumbed to the charms of the delightful little Cheetah. Zoo gals Becky Rose, Suzy, and Laura had a hand in planning the event. Ric Borg's paintings, of course, are in the background. No, the special guests got no haircuts, no shaves, no shampoos. Just adoration.

Dis 'N' Data
Looks like
Mary Martineau has undergone some momentous transforma-tions lately. First, she closes down her five-years-running Short North speciality shop, Transformations, then she receives the notable appointment of Executive Director for the Short North Business Association! &endash; A post formerly held by the tireless trouper P. Susan Sharrock. Congratulations, Mary! Hope you'll be around for more than a while.

Welcome to Four Winds International at 921 N. High Street. This large store has a wonderful international collection of art and furnishings. Formerly located in the Clintonville area, the business is owned by Mark and Kristin Batcheck.

Bargain-basement-priced works of art can be acquired by the shrewd and sensible (as well as the crude and curious) at CCAD's Student Art Sale Sat., April 28.

Brewmaster J. Scott Francis and Head Brewer Angelo Signorino of Barley's Brewing Company won a top award at the prestigious Real Ale Festival in Chicago. Their Auld Curiosity Ale took highest honors as Champion American Ale.

More on the supermarkets moving their merchandise around: Recently I was looking for English Muffins in their accustomed place and guess what was staring me in the face? A shelf full of pampers!

(From the March 2001 Issue)

Roomy Ridin'
Here recently I've been just about the happiest guy around. Walkin' on air. That's me! Maybe more like ridin' high in the saddle. Everything coming together, making sense out of the nonsensical. Adding up. And believe me, it was a bold move on my part that brought all this about. Pulled me out of the crawl spaces of life, it did.

Here's the story. Like so many of my fellow motorists, I frequently eat fast food in my car, no hamburgers anymore, and not many fries, but a lot of fish sandwiches, chicken sandwiches, all that stuff. Getting off fries and hamburgers was my concession to a more healthy diet. But lots of the other goodies, including pizza and those crispy little apple pies that MacDonald's sells are OK. And all of this doesn't include coffee. Wow! Do I ever drink a lot of coffee while I'm driving! That means lots of those cardboard coffee cups. Real pretty they are what with their colorful designs and logos. All those coffee cups mean lots of lids. Blizzards of lids!

Coffee cups, lids, all the paper wrappers from the food, and I forgot to mention those cute little non-dairy creamers, dozens of them, leading a life of their own, secretly multiplying under my car seat. And, I haven't even mentioned candy wrappers, paper napkins, banana peels, apple cores, random receipts, potato and tortilla chip bags, junked junk mail, used Kleenex, and old newspapers. You get the picture: Devastation, decadence, and degradation.

Even though I would periodically make a valiant effort to remedy this pathetic situation, it was always a losing battle. I'll tell you, toward the end there, I was staggering under a heavy load

of guilt, sometimes even hearing my mother's voice from way back chastising me. Then, when I figured there was no hope for me at all, a miracle occurred, out of the blue, as they say, and lifted my soul and my spirits onto a higher plane of existence.

One morning, just for the heck of it, I took a black jumbo-size plastic garbage bag out to my car, stuck it on the floor of the passenger side, and within minutes I had squished months of debris into its welcoming interior. I should explain that I seldom have anyone else in the car with me, but even when I do have a passenger I just tell them to lift their feet and take advantage of the comfy footrest on the floor. They usually say, "Thanks," then compliment me on what a neat car I have.

Hallelujah! I've been saved! Oh, yes, one other thing. In the next month or two, I gotta empty or replace that good ol' black hole before it explodes and destroys the neighborhood.

Dragonfly Shines
Magdiale Wolmark and Cristin Austin, co-owners of Dragonfly, the chic neo-v cuisine restaurant at 247 King Avenue, recently opened an adjoining gallery space. The 2,000-square-foot area will be home to art exhibits and live performance, as well as providing a comfortable place to relax with a cocktail before dining.

The gallery will feature a monthly wine-tasting and weekly electronic music formats. An exhibit of sculpture by Tim Reltenbach is currently being shown. Artists wishing to show their works in the new space are invited to call 298-9986.

Planet Pet
Right here in our midst is a dandy little store that carries darn near every-thing you might need if you own a cat or a dog. It's Kim Shuman's Planet Pet, located at 988 N. High Street.

Here are some of the many treasures this wonderful shop carries: All kinds

of creative tags, collars, and leashes, Flossy Chews, beautiful hand-painted bowls, Kitty Catnip Cigars, a connois-seurs collection of combs and brushes, shampoos, flea repellents, comfy beds, and scratching posts.

Would you believe clothes for your prized pet? How about shoes? Yep! They're here. Your Fido can be the best-dressed dog in the Easter Parade.

There's also food for Fido and Fluffy, all the major brands, and some you might not even have heard of. There are also items in stock for pet lovers: Clever cards, T-shirts (for you, not Rover). If Kim isn't in the store, chances are Jennifer Ruffing will be there to offer guidance and her seasoned perspective on your pet needs.

Elevator Elegance
Ryan and Dick Stevens, owners of the Elevator Brewery and Draught Haus, 161 N. High Street, deserve a tremendous amount of credit for the beautiful job they've done in preserving and restoring the historic restaurant and bar that they now operate.

The location, listed on the Columbus and National Registers of Historic Places, was originally the site of the Bott Brothers Billiard Hall, which opened in 1897 and closed in 1919, shortly after the advent of Prohibition. Later, the location gained a new life as the Clock Restaurant.

The building is blessed with the original stained glass windows, a mosaic tile floor, and a great deal of handcrafted woodwork. The back bar is adorned with marble pillars, more rare woodwork, and golden grotesques. A state-of-the-art brew-ing system is right behind the bar. There's even an ancient little gargoyle perched atop the back bar, taking in the ever-changing scene.

The Stevens have added custom carpeting in the dining room, cable light-ing, Italian chandeliers, and a dramatic new sign graces the front of the building. Twelve handcrafted beers are available on tap, the creations of Brewmaster Vince Falcone. Culinary delights are the work of Chef Bradley Balch. Oh, yes, there are two antique pool tables and dart boards.

Music Mural

A 1934 mural by Emerson Burkhart that once graced a wall of the old Central High School is being restored by a group of dedicated students. Titled Music, the 13-by-70 foot mural will be placed outside Battelle Hall on the third floor of the Greater Columbus Convention Center.

The mural was on display for only four years when it was whitewashed over on orders of the principal of the school who judged it risqué. Burkhart died in 1969.

The individual panels of the mural are being cleaned and in-painted (retouched) under the watchful eye of Anna Scott in a project that has spanned two years and cost over $15,000. Expenses are expected to go far beyond that figure.

A fund drive is underway, hopefully to reach a goal of $175,000, of which about $60,000 is already on hand. In addition to the restoration, it is hoped to establish a fund for future maintenance. Contributions may be sent to the Burkhart Mural Fund, Columbus Historical Society, 699 S. Front St., Columbus, OH 43206.

Nature Notes
I figure there are about six to eight pairs of Mockingbirds in the Short North area, including the villages. They are pretty quiet this time of year, but come May and June they burst into song, sometimes singin' away into the middle of the night. Especially when there's a full moon. Sometimes they get so carried away, they just fly straight up into the air, ten to twenty feet high, wings flapping, tail waggin', singin' all the while!

Dis 'N' Data
Jennifer Wolfe is the personable new daytime bartender at Zeno's. Her bright and friendly personality lights up the popular Third Avenue bar.

Work has already begun on Concorde Capital's giant project on the old Jeffrey Manufacturing and Mining site along North Fourth Street. The development will include a mix of single-family homes, row houses, apartments, and shops.

Good luck to Braddock's new restau-rant in the North Market. A lot of effort went into this enterprise and we can surely expect the same delicious food that their Grandview restaurant produces.

Yvonne Hardenbrook will be the featured reader at the March 23 meeting of the Poets Guild held at Northwood ART Space, 2231 N. High Street at 7:30 pm. Her most honored poems have just been published by Pudding House Publications. Greatest Hits 1982-2000 can be ordered from Pudding House, 60 N. Main St., Johnstown, OH 43031 for $8.95 pp.

The subdued lights, the sexy colors, and bubbling lava lights at B. Hampton's are just the ticket for soothing jangled nerves after getting off work. There's also plenty of parking early in the evening, before the big crowds come rolling in.

That's about it. Don't forget to smile!

(From the February 2001 Issue)

Marketing Malady
I finally figured out why I can never find anything when I shop in one of those mammoth supermarket stores. You know the ones I mean. They're usually grocery stores, but they can also be drugstores or anything else. They're the ones you can walk half the length of a football field just to reach the end of the aisle. So, if you're staring at a bin full of Brillo Pads when you're looking for lemon-flavored Jello, you know how frustrating this can be. Makes you feel like a loser. Seems like I end up walking mega-miles, up and down those endless aisles, back and forth, in a daze, grocery cart clattering, cursing the day they conceived such monstrous emporiums.

Just when I remember where the reliable little boxes of Jello are, I can't find them anymore. They've disappeared into thin air. Yeah, just like Jello dissolving in a pan of boiling water. "Damn," I mutter under my breath, or something much worse, making sure nobody can hear me. As I wander aimlessly around the store, one inaudible expletive follows another, including a few choice four-letter words.

Then, horrible thought! Am I getting the dreaded Alzheimer's Disease! "Hold on! Where's the bread? It was right here in this aisle last week. I'd bet my bottom dollar on it! #%*+^*!" Where did it go? The #*+%# bread has taken a powder!

Here's the story, and it's not pretty! These stores hire people to come in and move things around. It usually goes on at

night, covertly, if you know what I mean. But get this! More and more, I catch them brazenly doing it in broad daylight. Most bewildered shoppers think these people are just stocking merchandise. Yeah! Sure! They're stocking merchandise alright, but they're also moving stuff around. Big time! Just the other day I discovered bottled water where the peanut butter was supposed to be. The bread was over where waxed paper used to be, and waxed paper was where pet food used to be. What's going on here? Are these big corporations playing games with our heads? Are they deliberately trying to befuddle us poor chumps with some insane new merchan-dising strategy? I'd sure like to know!

Theatre Treasure
The Columbus Children's Theatre will present Treasure Island, dramatized by Max Bush and taken from the book by Robert Louis Stevenson, starting Thursday, February 1 and continuing through Sunday, February 18, at the 512 North Park Street theatre. Robert Behrens is the guest director. Call 224-6672 for ticket information.

N. Market Memos
Braddock's North Market Diner will be opening this month in the space formerly occupied by Frank's Diner. China Market has already opened and is featuring prepared Asian foods and some groceries. Heil's Deli celebrated its 32nd anniversary at the market on January 1.

Nature Notes
We've already talked about how crows and gulls have invaded our city. Both species are very adaptable and highly competitive which is why they do so well. Another bird that falls into this category &endash; one that we usually take for granted &endash; is the pigeon. Birders and ornithologists, by the way, call these birds Rock Doves. They are not native to North America, having been brought to these shores from Europe.

As many of you already know, pigeons can be a huge nuisance. I've heard them called a lot of bad names, including rats with wings. They come in a great variety of color combinations and patterns, and some of them are quite beautiful. Most of the time I see them perched on utility poles and lined up on the wires like notes of music. Then, every now and then, they burst forth into the sky in a hurricane of wings and go swooping about in every which direction. Many times when they do this it's because they have spotted a hawk. Look around. Scan the sky. Chances are you'll see a Cooper's or Red-tailed Hawk flyin' around looking for a meal.

Paul's Place
Paul Robinett is the entrepreneur of 7 Buttles (near the corner of Buttles and High), a small shop with a big agenda of merchandise and creative ideas.

There are candles, of course, but there's a lot more, including original Robinett abstract paintings, bold and colorful, and an entire line of attractive greeting cards with sensitive messages that you'll find nowhere else. As far as that goes, the candles are unique too, hand-poured, scented, shaped, tinted, and ensconced in attractive holders. If you are looking for something really different, there are thousands to choose from.

There are other things, too, including great gift items. The truth is, you never know from one day to the next what will turn up in this neat little gallery/shop.

Dis 'N' Data
Dick Allen, genial owner of Zeno's, is recuperating from a foot operation which had him on crutches for a month or more. He's doing fine now, thank you. By the way, Zeno's is now featuring a greatly expanded menu, which includes pizzas, subs, salads, and occasional pasta entrees. The cooks making all this possible: Johnny Bretagna, Adam Oliver, and Pete Kücinski.

Craig Carlisle (he of the wonderfully goofy Heads) just wound up a highly successful month-long exhibit at the George Billis Gallery in New York City. He'll be exhibiting at Sharon Weiss' Antiques and Art on Poplar in April.

For the first time in its 78-year history, 820 WOSU-AM will begin broadcasting 24 hours a day. The evening and overnight hours will feature Jazz with Bob Parlocha.

Michelle Hill's St. James Tavern is looking mighty spiffy these days with a newly extended bar and lots of handsome wood finishing touches. Their biggest crowds show up after 9 pm.

I was pleasantly surprised when Ursala Lanning told me she was from Lancaster. I was telling her how much the Lantz family of Lancaster have been enjoying the Emerson Burkhart letters we've been publishing. Ursala was surprised in turn when I told her one of my sons, James, was the manager of Alley Park, the wonderful natural area on the south side of Lancaster.

That's about it, and if you get a chance, leave the world in better shape than you found it. But relax, enjoy, and have a little fun along the way too!


(From the January 2001 issue)

So Long, Seifert
I was saddened to learn of Walt Seifert's recent death. He was the author of more than 4,000 letters published in newspapers from coast to coat. Walt worked for Byer and Bowman, a large Columbus advertising agency, when I first got to know him. Then he went to The Ohio State University and taught public relations classes for a long time. Every so often, I used to see Walt at the Grandview Big Bear, always looking like a legendary Greek sea captain with his white beard and jaunty cap. He was also a fan of the Gazette and encouraged us in our endeavors. Not too long ago he dropped us a note in which he said: "Thanks for the March issue of your splendid paper. I always check the ads first, and you have plenty of them. BUT: You also satisfy all types of reading appetites &endash; News, Humor, Business, Biography, etc., etc. Keep making this old campaigner Proud!" He signed it with a scrawled "Me." A lot of times I didn't agree with Walt's political sentiments, but he sure did have a canny eye when it came to keeping OSU on the straight and narrow.

Market Memos

Braddock's North Market Diner is scheduled to open in mid-February in the space formerly occupied by Frank's Diner. A new merchant, China Market, will open at North Market in early January and will feature prepared Asian foods and some groceries. Heil's Deli celebrated its 32nd anniversary at the market on January 1.

Gulls Galore

More nature notes. Crows aren't the only birds on the increase in urban areas. Gulls are also on the move, increasing in numbers, becoming more and more widespread. Hundreds of them congregate along our rivers and it is quite common to see them hustling around shopping centers and fast food restaurants. From time to time, I've seen a few around the Thurber Village Shopping Center and occasionally I'll notice them checking out the Goodale Park pond. More often, large numbers of them straggle overhead, sometimes thirty or more, looking like a scene from The Birds, going from someplace to somewhere else. They are more common from October through April and most of them are Ring-billed Gulls, which is the most common species of the family in Ohio.

Cap Coming

Plans are still very much alive for creating an attractive, pedestrian-friendly cap over I-670 where it's going to be widened in 2002. Gavin Armstrong, of the Victorian Village Society, was quoted recently in the Columbus Dispatch. He is enthusiastic about the possibilities for enhancing the area for visitors and residents alike. Some plans call for a community of shops set in a park-like atmosphere. Proponents of the idea believe it will help connect the Short North to Downtown, including the Convention Center, the North Market, and the Nationwide Arena.

Dis 'N' Data

Dan Davis, owner/operator of the Neil Avenue BP station, recently observed his 25th anniversary at the popular refueling and service center. Dan's a shining example of someone sticking it out through thick and thin. Thanks for being there, Dan.

Kudos to Mary Martineau for the splendid work she is doing for the SNBA while they search for another Director.

Shoot! Was so sorry to see Camera Obscura close its doors at 1044 N. High Street. The shop was an interesting and attractive showcase for the photographic talents of Lee Ann McGuire and Heiderose Forby. Don't give up, Gals!

Michelle Hill's St. James Tavern is looking mighty spiffy these days with a newly extended bar and lots of handsome wood finishing touches.

We were happy to see Ricky's Galaxy move into the old Lost Planet space at 680 N. High Street. Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, the menu offers a variety of interesting and unusual treats. Included are specialties from the Caribbean, South America, and Asia, not to mention some good ol' comfort food from our own southern states. You can find their menu on our Web page at www.shortnorth.com

Attention, New Year's Resolutioners! Look for a sizeable yoga studio to open soon on High Street near Third Avenue. Get yourself in limber condition.

I'm slowly reading my way through Sweet Thursday, a novel by John Steinbeck, that Jim Kennedy was kind enough to pass on to me. It's a continu-ation of Cannery Row, a Steinbeck book about a lovable bunch of characters who lived in pre-World War II Monterey, California, a book that I read years ago. All the characters are there: Doc, working in his laboratory at Western Biological; Fauna, the new headmistress of Bear Flag, the local brothel; a newcomer named Suzy; Hazel; a drifter whose parents must have wanted a girl; Le Chong, and all the others. Thanks, Jim, it's a swell book. Guess I'll have a shot of Old Tennis Shoes.

Here's the kind of e-mail we love to get. Listen to this: "Your website is the best I've ever seen! That includes thousands from around the world. Congratulations! " Signed Juan Perlee." Thanks, Juan, wherever you live! Those words are music to our ears!

Speaking of which, be sure to visit our Web site at www. shortnorth.com and stroll (or scroll, if you must) through our new Emerson Burkhart Gallery. This remarkable man was a friend of ours, and here I have gathered together some of his paintings that might give you an idea of his superb artistry.

"Show me a man who hasn't sinned!" the Reverend Billy Graham once asked from the pulpit of his church and much to his surprise a parishioner raised his hand. "You mean you have never sinned?" Graham asked in disbelief. "No, sir, my wife's first husband," the man explained.

I'm tired of winter already. Trouble is it's like Mark Twain once said, "Everybody complains about the weather but nobody does anything about it!"

That's about it. Try to do good.

 

(From the December 2000 issue)

Lincoln Link

The environs around the new Nationwide Arena are just beautifully thought out and executed. I'm talking about stylish architecture and quality construction. Everything goes with every-thing else: mostly a turn-of-the-century feeling. It's just fine. The only thing I wonder about is why don't the guys down there give a little recognition to Murray D. Lincoln? After all, he founded the insurance company, kit and caboodle. If they already have, then I would appreciate hearing about it. I inter-viewed Mr. Lincoln once, shortly before he retired, and enjoyed it immensely. He was a grand old man, innovative and far ahead of his times in his thinking. The original company was known as the Ohio Farm Bureau, and they got their start out on East Broad Street near Parsons.

Crafty Crows

Caw! Caw! Caw! Sometimes it seems like the crows are taking over the city. I've talked about this before but it just seems like I'm seeing and hearing more and more of them everywhere I go. They are getting bolder and more brazen in their behavior. They hang out everywhere: in the street, in yards, in back alleys, cawing their way through every square mile of the city. They're omnivorous, which means they will eat darn near anything. One reason they are so successful. They are also carnivorous, at least part of the time, which means they will steal and eat the eggs of other birds and sometimes eat young nestlings. They are also carrion eaters, like the vultures. But some of their diet is beneficial to mankind because they will fill up on injurious insect pests.

Crow language is much more convoluted and elaborate than you would believe. Over a hundred different "words" have been determined and there are probably thousands of inflections and combinations of sounds beyond our understanding. When you hear a whole bunch of crows raising Holy Cain, chances are good a hawk or owl is lurking somewhere nearby. The crows just go berserk! Swooping! Diving! Cawing in high gear! Most probably they're making life miserable for a Cooper's Hawk. And, here's an odd fact. A flock of these interesting big black birds that are closely related to ravens is called "a murder of crows." Why? Don't ask me!

Shoe Story

Not too long ago, I bought a dandy pair of shoes at Brown Shoes in the Kingsdale Center. The shoes are called SAS, and they're made down in Texas hill country, in the beautiful Siesta Valley, not far from San Antonio. In an attractive promotion piece, the manu-facturers state: "Our philosophy is simple . . . It goes back to a time when ambition was clearing fields and craftsmanship was building farms . . . when eggs came from the chicken house and milk from the family cow. This was a time when, if you made something poorly, word of mouth would put you out of business before you

ever got started. We think the same should be true today."

Anyhow, the shoes are incredibly comfortable even though the $110 I paid for them would probably set my mother spinning in her grave if she heard about it. But what the heck? As they say elsewhere in their literature: "In an average lifetime, a person's feet will carry them between 150,000 and 200,000 miles. That's six to eight times around the earth." Not only that, the lady who waited on me said her father was Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, Charles Evans Hughes. And she put those shoes on my tootsies!

Lot Lights

The Friends of Goodale Park and the Columbus Recreation and Parks Depart-ment are cooperating on a project to provide lights for a new and improved parking area that services the Shelter-house and Caretaker's Cottage. The rub? Additional funding is needed. Send contributions to Friends of Goodale Park, c/o Norm Dolder, 911 Neil Ave., Columbus, OH 43215. Please jot down "Parking Lot Lights" on the memo line of your check. Other Victorian Village items: Brian Higgins would like you to drop him a line if you have any memories of Flytown. Call him at 563-3533.

Holiday Lights

The Harrison West Holiday Lights Contest will soon be underway. Lights and decorations should be up by the 15th. Categories are: Traditional, Most Exuberant, and Elegantly Victorian. Previous winners are not eligible. If you think you might like to be a judge, call Veda Gelp at 299-6877.

Thoreau Trauma

Henry David Thoreau has always been a big-time hero of mine. He was a man of high convictions and morality, an individualist of the first rank, one of America's unique writers, an environmentalist from the word go. How I used to admire his written accounts of the time he spent in his little cabin in the woods at Walden Pond. How I admired his sturdy and rugged determination to get away from it all, to be his own man, to get back to nature. How I admired such daring-do! "I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life," he wrote. And how I lapped it up! Like a cat presented with a saucer of cream. So how do you think I felt when I recently read that his mother brought him his lunch every day? That she was a veritable catering service for Henry. Oh well, heroes come, heroes go. Maybe I can even forgive the old guy from Concord this indulgence. Chances are he wasn't much of a cook, so if his mother hadn't lent a hand, he might have starved to death out there in the deep, deep woods. It's ok, Henry, I still love your magical mastery of words, such as this lovely observation: "Only that day dawns to which we are awake. There is more day to dawn. The sun is but a morning star." And, I've always admired this one: "I had three chairs in my house: one for solitude, two for friendship, three for society." Sleep soundly, friend!

 

Page Hall Renovation

Lincoln Street Studio, 45 East Lincoln Street, recently accepted an architectural contract to redesign The Ohio State University's Page Hall to accommodate the John Glenn Institute. "We're excited about being located in the same building as the Glenn Institute since our area of scholarship is all about exposing students to careers in public service," said Carol Norton, Administrative Associate of the School of Public Policy and Management at the university.

 

Bon Appétit , Doral!

I guess I've known Doral Chenoweth, the Columbus Dispatch's "Grumpy Gourmet," most of my professional life. Way back in the dim corridors of time, back in the days when Columbus had a downtown, he was a columnist for the long-since defunct Columbus Star, a local entertainment and scandal tabloid. For a good many years, he also did public relations work for the Don Casto organization. And somewhere along the way, he became a friend of my old friend, Emerson Burkhart. Not content with all these accomplishments, this consummate journalist of gourmet persuasions has been whipping out his columns in the Dispatch for something like 19 years. Now it's dessert time and Doral's going to call it quits at the Big D and spend a little more time on some other things he wants to get done, like writing a book. Doral, we'll miss your weekly offerings, but it's comforting to know that you're home pounding that keyboard.

Tree Heirlooms

December will bring handblown, mouthblown glass tree ornaments to 772 Cameo. This autumn, Kelsey and her team have been elf-crafting state-of-the-art tree ornaments for the holidays. A large handblown, mouthblown ornament by Kelsey will run anywhere from $50 to $95 to $250, and prove to be beautiful and rare. And although breakable, it will be heavy and not easily broken.

Kelsey at Whitehouse

You've seen it on TV. The children and the Christmas tree in the Blue Room at The White House, and President Clinton reading The Night Before Christmas aloud. Well, Kelsey's millennial ornament not only made it to the Blue Room tree, but Hillary Clinton called the blown ornament "my favorite" and chose it for the Whtie House Christmas party invitations.

The blown glass ornament represented the universe and the endangered animals living on earth. No political affiliation was the springboard for this honor, just Kelsey's skill, imagination, and love of animals.

As luck would have it, Kelsey had broken her ankle and couldn't attend the reception! At any rate, several hundred craft persons were invited to submit ornaments for the tree, but Kelsey's was chosen! Starting at $50, you will find an original mouthblown glass ornament by Kelsey and other noted artists. These ornaments will be heirlooms!

P.S.: At pm there are always wonderful glass ornaments in the window and inside. Loot, also, is an ornament place par excellence. Many shops and galleries in the Short North will be selling marvelous ornaments and decor. Windows will sparkle like snow and sugar. Go inside.

 

Dis 'N' Data

Dan Davis, owner/operator of the Neil Avenue BP station, recently observed his 25th anniversary at the popular refueling and service center.

Why couldn't the Bushes and the Gores have shared the White House? Goodness knows it's big enough. Coulda put the Bushes in the right wing and the Gores in the left wing. They coulda put all their differences behind them, maybe even partied together, played cards, had friends in, found out that folks from that "other party" weren't so bad after all. What the hey! As they say in Durango, it takes two to tango!

GO BUCKS!


(From the Nov. 2000 issue)

Salinger Shots

I feel like some kind of voyeur after reading Joyce Maynard's At Home in the World last summer, and now, more recently, Dream Catcher by Margaret Salinger. Both books have probably seen the light of day only because they deal with J. D. Salinger, author, natch, of Catcher in the Rye. Nevertheless, each in its own way is quite interesting and worthy of a wide audience. Dream Catcher is by the great man's daughter and, believe it or not, I just caught the double entendre in the title of her book as I was typing this out.

Many of her childhood recollections of her father are rather critical, but then she also finds a lot of things to chastise her mother about. So, big deal. Isn't that like a lot of kids?

But, I can't help but sympathize with Mr. Salinger, who is now 81 years old and has a newer, younger wife. After all, he seems to be catching it from both ends, from a once-upon-a-time girlfriend, and now from his own daughter. All I can say is: J. D., I'm sure it will take more than a couple of kiss 'n' tell books to get you down. Being a veteran of the landings at Omaha Beach and the Battle of the Bulge, you've had people shoot at you really big time.

One final word. I think I probably enjoy knowing J. D. He's probably a lot like me. Dusty, rusty. and crusty. Never knowing when to quit. And, maybe that's the secret to life - at any age - never giving up.

 

Kids' Eye Care

Children in Columbus in need of eye care, but whose parents cannot afford it are now able to acquire that crucial care through Vision Service Plan's Sight for Students program. Daniel J. Koch, O.D. of Columbus Eye Works, 1127 N. High Street, is participating in the program which provides free eye care services to youngsters whose parents work, yet are ineligible for government support and cannot afford the eye exams and glasses needed. Call 421-2020 for information.

Bazaar Beckons

Victorian Village's St. Francis parish and Sacred Heart parish will join forces to present this year's Holiday Bazaar in Sacred Heart's Ryan Hall, 893 Hamlet St., Nov. 11 and 12. That's between Summit and Fourth Streets, off First Ave. Proceeds will benefit both parishes. Saturday hours are 10 am to 4 pm and Sunday hours are 10 am to 2 pm. The Bazaar will feature homemade baked goods, appetizing snacks, exciting raffles, and great prizes. For more info, call Dennis Cox at 299-9850, or the Sacred Heart office at 299-4191.

Bird Balm

Hooray for the "Important Bird Areas in Ohio" project, which includes half a dozen pleasant places here in central Ohio. Several Metro Parks made the cut, as well as the area around the Greenlawn Avenue Dam. There are many, many other natural areas, of course, that are havens for wild birds. The purpose of this program was merely to draw attention to a few outstanding spots to make sure that they are adequately protected. The project was largely the work of Ohio Audubon and the Wildlife Division of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.

Salon Savvy

Tim Reynolds (Byford), proprietor of Byford's Salon, which recently opened at 8 E. Poplar Street in the Short North, says he hopes to give customers "perfectional, personal attention to their hair care needs." Tim has traveled throughout the U. S. and parts of Europe as an expert on coloring, designer perming, and cutting. He has been a platform artist for such companies as Logics, Clairol, and Tressa. For the last eight years, he has been co-owner of the Jean Byford Salon in Worthington. The new salon, beautifully designed, is an Aveda concept, all the way.

Ramp Repair

Some people grouse about the expense of the new wheelchair-accessible ramps on our street corners, but it recently occurred to me that these projects are also of benefit to bicyclists, mommies and daddies pushing baby buggies, not to mention joggers, skate-boarders, in-line skaters, scooter-loonies, sledders, older folks who might have a bit of trouble getting about, or people of any age who've had one too many.

Alley Affair

I like alleys, back alleys, I mean. They're not so darn prim and proper as the streets out-front with the houses all lined up rank and file like Puritans on Parade. Out in back things are a lot looser, more humble, more interesting, in my opinion. There's a lot of interesting garage architecture, especially around some of the larger and older houses. There are still a few brick alleys around, some gravel ones, but most are asphalt. Driving or walking down an alley you get good views of the backyards, usually larger and more diversified than the front yards. True, there are garbage cans and dumpsters, sometimes a car that needs repair, patches of uncut grass, maybe a child's broken wagon. But isn't this closer to what life is really like? During the warmer months, I like to feast my eyes on the sunflowers, hollyhocks, and morning glories. And sometime, if I should so aspire, there are plenty of heaven trees to shinny up.

Lovely Ladies

Here's to the lovely lady bartenders at Zenos! They've put this popular West Third Avenue bistro right back on the map where it belongs. They are: Susi E. Carr, Lisa Fuhrman, Patsy Kautz, Cyndi Sanders, and Terri Whitlock! Zeno's ia a customer-friendly bar and lots of fun to go to any day or night of the week. There's plenty of big-screen TV and a kitchen that serves up excellent bar grub. Go in there and say hello! You'll be glad you did!

 

Michele Burke Mooney, newly appointed Director of Marketing at North Market.

The board of directors of the North Market Development Authority recently announced the appointment of Michele Burke Mooney as the North Market's new Director of Marketing.

Mooney is the first employee hired by the North Market's new Executive Director, David Wible, who has been with the Market since August.

Mooney's background in marketing and public relations includes professional experience with the Greater Columbus Arts Council, Cameron Mitchell Restaurants, New Albany Country Club, and Capital Club, Columbus.

"We are happy to have Michele on board," said Wible. "Michele's creativity and marketing expertise, coupled with her knowledge of the foodservice and hospitality industry will serve the Market well during this time of exciting growth."

Mooney joined the North Market staff on October 2, 2000 and is responsible for marketing, special events, public relations and promotions. In her free time, the Clintonville resident enjoys hiking, baking, yoga and walking her dog.

In operation since 1876, the North Market is Columbus' only remaining public market. More than 30 North Market merchants offer a wide variety of fresh produce, meat, poultry, seafood, flowers and specialty food items. The Market also provides a unique selection of freshly prepared foods, distinctive gifts, free advice and personable service. Located at 59 Spruce Street, North Market is open seven days per week.

 Dis 'N' Data

The luxurious new Hampton Inn & Suites, 501 N. High Street, had a quiet but successful opening in mid-October. Their doors are now open to those seeking comfortable refuge in attractive surroundings. The Hampton Inn is located in the Arena District, right across the street from the Greater Columbus Convention Center.

Paul Robinett, creative artist/proprietor of 7 Buttles, has a nice Web site that displays his art, a multitude of candles that are for sale at his shop, and a lot of other smart stuff. Go to paulrobinett.com, of course. Oh! Paul has created a series of personal cards, sensitive and caring, that will surely strike a sympathetic note with something that's going on in your life. Check 'em out.

Cheers to the downtown Metropolitan Library for their policy of free parking to patrons in their underground garage for a full hour.

Very interesting is Leni D. Anderson's exhibit "Old Ohio Penitentiary Project: HISTORY." Part One is in the Nov/Dec issue of Dialogue magazine. Part Two was exhibited in October on a couple of downtown billboards. Part Three will be an exhibition at Columbus State Community College. Included are video installations, photographs, drawings and paintings, a computer-generated collage, and a short story. Here are some interesting facts about the old Ohio Pen, which was demolished in 1999. It opened its doors in 1815. Twenty-eight men were hanged and 315 persons were electrocuted. Three women were executed. Anderson is a self-taught artist represented by America Oh Yes! and A Muse Gallery.

Cristen Austin's and Magdiale Wolmark's Dragonfly recently introduced a new menu with all kinds of appetizing goodies, plus an eclectic wine and beer list. As if that weren't enough, the popular dining spot at 247 King Ave. now has Mary Messaros, formerly of North Market's Del's Bread, conjuring up fresh bakery treats every day.

Rick Scott informs us that the Open Shelter, Inc. is now selling copies of the popular Entertainment 2001 coupon book. Contact Rick at 461-0407.

Don't forget the Greater Columbus Local Music Awards at Little Brother's the evening of November 8. Details at www.LocalMusicAwards.com

Question: What is the difference between being dissed off and pissed off? Danged if I know! Maybe just the geography of anatomy.

Remember, you can't go too far wrong if you do the best you can with whatcha got.

 

GO BUCKS!

 

 

(From the October 2000 issue)

Bird Bidding

Fluff up your feathers and step out Sunday, October 15: The Columbus Audubon Society is presenting an art auction from 4:00 to 6:30 pm at the Smith Hardware Building, 580 North Fourth Street. There will be silent and live bidding for a wide variety of paintings, drawings, prints, carvings, and other things pertaining to birds. Works are by such prominent Ohio artists as Ora Anderson, Charles Harper, and Carolyn Heffelfinger. Proceeds will benefit environmental projects such as the preservation of Calamus Swamp in Pickaway County. Tickets are $20 per person. Reservations and information can be obtained by calling 436-4734.

Speaking of birds, David Sibley, author of the National Audubon Society Sibley Guide to the Birds will be my guest on WOSU Radio (820 AM), Thursday, October 19 at 6:30 pm. If you like bird talk, tune in.

Paper Police

I was elated to read Jamie Pietras' article in the August 31 Columbus Alive complaining about Starbucks coffeeshops' and Barnes and Noble bookstores' policy excluding free community newspapers. I share the alarm and disdain expressed at this kind of arbitrary action, because at the very least it's a form of petty silliness and, at the most, it could be construed as a form of censorship. Heaven knows, in this one-daily-newspaper town we need all the diverse and dissenting opinions we can find. So, are these actions censorship? No, but they are a step in that direction.

Chances are, in spite of denials, the whole brouhaha arose from someone's complaints about gay papers being available at these locations. I don't want to sound preachy, but I have to say this: It is the freedom of the mind (and the

press) that makes a truly free society. It is the free flow of ideas bigots and tyrants alike fear the most. And, the individuals who kowtow to such actions are the very ones who lack faith in our system of government.

Such mental constipation has always been a characteristic of those misguided souls who are attracted to the security of the authoritarian state. These same people decry modern art, sculpture, and architecture. They don't understand, or mistrust, much contemporary poetry and literature. They shudder at modern movies and the theatre. The closed and sheltered mind is the mind that matures into either ignorance or hatred, and either one into fanaticism.

A strange irony: The same people, the same solid citizens who are so worried about the mental welfare of their dear children are often the most foul-mouthed and dirty-minded persons imaginable. Over the bridge tables pass the dirtiest and most racist jokes in America. Should we outlaw dirty jokes? Of course not. So let's have a free distribution of commu-nity newspapers in our town. Especially, in bookstores! And, I'm happy to say, the folks at Starbucks rescinded their ban.

Penny Peeve

I am declaring all-out war on pennies. I've had it! I'm through with them. They're totally useless and perform few useful functions. I used to fill jars and glasses full of them. But I'm tired of

doing it. They're not worth the time stuffing them into wrappers. Here's what I do now. When I receive pennies in change for a purchase, I immediately dump them, sprinkle their little copper asses wherever I am. If I'm at a fast food joint, I dump them in the plantings beside my car. They look nice there, copper highlights shining midst the chrysanthemums. If I have to I jettison them in a gutter, wherever. I prefer some place where a little kid might come along and discover them. Goodbye pennies, I'm tired of messin' with you. Get out of my life!

Speaking of coins, here lately I've been rolling quarters, dimes, and nickels into their respective wrappers and using them to buy my gasoline. Seems more painless than using fives and tens.

Decorating Done

B. Hampton's Cathy Capuano says to come in and see the new decorating job just completed in the popular nightspot at Third Avenue and Harrison. Among the pleasant surprises is a display of photographs by Lee Ann McGuire and a dramatic skyline mural of New York City. And check out the new Aqua-Lamps. They're super-cool! Always famous for great food at reasonable prices, B. Hampton's has a brand new menu with all kinds of tasty new items for your dining pleasure. Get over there!

 

Pretty Purchase

Buy some art to feel good about yourself. Not such a crazy idea. Many psychologists say that bringing beauty into your home is a great stimulant to happiness. Even Dr. Andrew Weil, in his book Eight Weeks to Optimum Health says that flowers and works of art are beneficial to one's mental well-being. A side benefit: Consider your acquisition an investment, a one-of-a-kind creation that might increase in value over the years. But even if it doesn't, it surely adds a spark of rapture to your life.

 

Fortin on Fifth

For over half a century, Fortin Ironworks has been central Ohio's primary source of creative custom ironwork. After 54 years at the company's West Third Avenue location, the firm has moved into a 60,000 sq. foot, 3-acre factory and showroom at 944 W. Fifth Avenue. The location was formerly occupied by Columbus Hardware and, before that, the Exact Weight Scale Companies.

On display in the new showroom are classic examples of interior and exterior ironwork, including wrought iron fences, gates, railings, furniture, and accessories. Joe and Josephine Fortin founded the company in 1946. Their seven children and numerous grandchildren now manage the business. For more info, call Bob Fortin at 291-4342.

 

Dis 'N' Data

I was very glad to see the original front being restored to the newly reborn Memorial Hall where COSI used to be out on East Broad St. Reincarnated! Some of the events I saw there included stage presentations of John Brown's Body, Don Juan in Hell, and The Devil and Daniel Webster. Some of the stars I remember seeing included Tyrone Power, Agnes Moorehead, and Raymond Massey. Also the Berlin Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Herbert von Karajan, and the Philadelphia Symphony Orchestra, directed by Eugene Ormandy. Too bad the renovated building's going to be nothing more than offices. It would have made a swell community theatre and concert center.

Ron Arps' September exhibit at A Muse Gallery was a smashing success and a joy to behold! The colors in his paintings are bold and magical, the women portrayed, enigmatic and erotic. Some of his paintings can still be seen there.

Jack Allman was a 38-year-veteran of the oleo plant - most recently AC Humco - that is exiting our area. Jack loved every minute of it, except for the retirement he was forced to take in '93.

My friend Jim Hill bought himself an old houseboat, circa 1965, over on the Muskingum River, and he's like a boy with a new toy, puttering around, fixin' it up, asking friends over to help him fix it up, having lots of fun, having a few beers, enjoyin' life on the river, sort of like Huck Finn.

More cell phone stuff: I was standing in

a long line at a Tri-Village bank when this dude came in talkin' on his little ol' cell phone real loud like: "Hi, Doll! I luv ya! Has it been a whole week since I called? I can't believe it. You're what? Well, you're dehydrated because you're pregnant." And so on and on up to and beyond the point of utter inanity.

P. Susan Sharrock e-mails regarding a mix-up of names in the September Short North Business Association column. Correct version: Paul Liu is the owner of haiku restaurant; Dan Reese is the manager.

Gwen Surratt has left the Wallich Gallery and will pursue her masseuse skills at Le Salon, 1200 Chambers Road, the same building that hovers over the Aspen Inn.

Raymond Fusco, of Victorian Village, has been promoted to the position of financial planner for Midwest Retirement Consultants.

Short North newcomer Lisa Cini, president of Mosaic Design Studios at 879 N. High Street, recently won the coveted Excellence in Enterprise award presented by the Women's Business Resource Program of the Ohio Department of Development.

Boy, oh boy! That old W. Fifth Ave. Ronald McDonald's sure bit the dust in a hurry! Now, a brand new one is rising from the rubble - like a McPhoenix - and might well be open by the time this item sees print.

GO BUCKS!

 


(From the September 2000 Issue)

Muted Music

We were very sorry indeed to hear about the demise of the Short North Folk Music Sampler and the Short North Chamber Music Series. Most regrettable is the news that Steve Rosenberg, founder and general manager of the Short North Performing Arts Association, has resigned. The group evolved from casual concerts that Rosenberg and other musicians performed in their homes on Sunday afternoons. The Chamber Music Series came into being in 1983 when Rosenberg worked out an arrangement to hold the concerts at the Short North Tavern, 674 N. High Street, and quite recently at the K2U. The Folk Music Sampler was based at Little Brother's, 1100 N. High Street. Toba Feldman, president of the Performing Arts Association, said the group will assess its future during the next six months.

Eyeworks

Think this over: The building on the NW corner of Fourth and High that now houses Columbus Eyeworks was once the location of the Caravan Bar. People used to go there and get blind. Now they go there and get their sight enhanced. Ironic? I guess so.

Personable Daniel J. Koch, O. D., recently gave us a tour of the beautifully restored structure. Even though I loved the hardwood floors and the wonderful exposed brick walls, I was impressed

most of all by the magical transformation from a grungy old neighborhood bar into a clinically squeaky clean professional set of offices including an attractive reception area, examination rooms, display cases, and all the rest.

Dr. Koch graduated from The Ohio State University College of Optometry and completed a hospital-based residency at the Veterans Administration in Chillicothe and Columbus. While in his residency, he also served as a clinical

instructor at the OSU College of Optometry. A lifelong resident of Ohio, Dr. Koch grew up near Akron. He owned a private practice near Cleveland until 1994 when he joined an Ophthalmology group practice with emphasis on refractive and cataract surgery in Sandusky, Ohio.

Jeffrey Place

Concorde Capital, a Columbus real estate and development company, has announced plans for a $100 million project that will transform over 36.5 acres of mostly unused land north of downtown into a multi-purpose development of 160 single family homes, 500 rental apart-ments, 75,000 square feet of office space, parkland, and 8,000 of retail space.

The site, named Jeffrey Place, is just north of I-670, and is bounded by North Fourth Street on the west, and extends north beyond E. Fifth Avenue. Much of the area at one time was occupied by buildings of the Jeffrey Mining Products Co. In 1987, Abbott Laboratories bought 33 acres, but never developed the land.

Joe Recchie, Concorde Capital CEO, said that construction will commence this fall, after environmental and economic-feasibility studies are completed. He and his investors believe there is a demand for more housing near Downtown. He said that the development was partly in response to Mayor Michael B. Coleman's challenge to improve the quality of life Downtown.

Columbus City Council President Matt Habash believes the undertaking has a lot of merit. Andy Klein, Italian Village Society president, commented that it is still a bit early for his group to support the project. Recchie has indicated that Concorde Capital hopes to conform with neighborhood guidelines.

In a related project, Preferred Real Estate plans to transform Jeffrey Mining Company property into office space for the State Library of Ohio and a telecommunications company.

Agent Awarded

Bruce Dooley, CRS of Dooley & Co. Realtors, has recently been notified that he received the "Pinnacle of Performance" award by the Ohio Association of Realtors. Only 114 agents throughout the state of Ohio (with approximately 29,500 members) have obtained this coveted award. This is the first year that the award has specifically recognized agents with a net sales volume in excess of $7,500,000.00. Presentation of the award will take place at the association's state convention in Cleveland the first week in September. Dooley, a Certified Residential Specialist (top 4% nationally), ranks in the category of the top 25 sales agents of the Columbus. Board of Realtors.

Walter Wins

Walter Shealor of 290 E. Moler St., has had a watercolor painting selected for the Ohio Watercolor Society's 23rd Annual Juried Exhibition at the Middletown Fine Arts Center through October 13. Walt has been a member of the organization since 1992 and has won numerous awards for his work. His residence has been converted into a studio and showroom. Viewing can be arranged by calling 614-443-5584.

Shops Shift

Let's see if we've got this straight. Surface Style, long located on the NE corner of Russell and North High, is moving to Worthington. Linda Franz's Anèw, now located just a few doors north, will be moving into the spacious newly available spot. Cookware Sorcerer, a few store-fronts away, will be moving into the spot recently vacated by Garnish, and Kloth, a nifty new clothing shop, will be opening in the former Cookware space.

Dis 'N' Data

For a "Taste of Organic," try this out: Chef Magdiale Wolmark is preparing a special menu of summer delicacies highlighting Ohio grown organic food Sept. 10 from 3 to 7 pm at Dragonfly Neo Vegetarian Cuisine, 247 King Avenue. For more food facts, call 421-2022.

Stop in and say hello to Todd Sheeran, new propreitor of the J & G Diner. Expect the same hearty food and friendly service .

Disney on Ice will bring Jungle Adventures to Nationwide Arena Sept. 13 thru Sept. 17. The ice show extravaganza brings Tarzan, Baloo, King Louie, Simba, and Rafike together live for the first time.

The Wexner Center for the Arts has appointed internationally renowned contem-porary art curator and critic Carlos Basualdo as its chief curator of exhibitions.

See the Art Cars and meet the artists (like Ramona Moon) Sept. 9 from 7 to 10 pm at the Artist's Roost, 660 N. High Street in Worthington.

In regard to my "Legends" column last month, Bob Burlingame wonders how many readers might be willing to share humorous or weird situations in which people were using cell phones.

If you get a chance, catch CATCO's production of Neil Simon's The Odd Couple, Sept. 12 thru Oct. 21 at the Riffe Center Studio One Theatre. There are matinees on Saturdays and Sundays, and discounts for seniors, students, and teachers!

Whenever I see somebody popping an aspirin with coffee, a cola drink, beer, or even fruit juice, I can hardly keep myself from running over to them and shouting, "No! No! Don't do that, unless you want to burn a hole in your stomach real quick." Of course, I keep my mouth shut. I just sit there quietly, watching them slowly commit suicide, probably sucking on a coffin-nail too.

Well, that's all for this time. Thanks for listening. You're terrific!

 


(From the August 2000 Issue)

Burkhart Begins

Why a self-portrait of Emerson Burkhart on the front cover? Well, it's our way of drawing attention to a new feature in the Gazette, starting in this issue, "The Letters of Emerson Burkhart."

The illustrated series will contain excerpts from letters and journals of the noted artist, much of the material never before published.

Burkhart, born in 1905, lived in Columbus most of his adult life. Over the years, many admirers and art fanciers attended one or more of his annual open houses at his residence on Woodland Avenue. His paintings are included in many private collections and have been purchased by museums all over the United States. He died in 1969 at the height of his career. Two years later, the Columbus Gallery of Fine Arts held a retrospective show of his work in his honor.

 

Book Bust

Imagine how disappointed I was when I was offered a dollar for a couple dozen books, hard and soft backs, that I took into a discount bookstore on the northwest side of town. I know as a fact that I should have gotten 20 bucks for the lot of them. Not only that, the two women clerks were surly and rude. They made me feel like a dumpster diver. It was also evident they knew precious little about book titles. Never again! The entire experience was degrading and depressing.

The reason I was down-sizing my library is that I'm thinking about moving sometime in the near future. After the unpleasant episode just described, I realized how stupid I had been for not going to one of the really good used book emporiums in the Clintonville area. Three fine examples are: Hoffman's at 211 Arcadia Avenue, Books on High at 3510 N. High Street, and Karen Wickliff's at 2579 N. High Street.

I still have several hundred books that I want to get rid of. Some of them are real rarities. So I'll go to one of the stores I just mentioned, and the half-baked, half-witted bookworms I talked about earlier can go blow it out their collective belly buttons.

 

Humko Hikes

The rumor preceded the fact by at least a year, but was hotly denied at the time. Now it's admitted. The huge, sprawling AC Humko plant on West First Avenue will be producing cooking oils and oleo products no more. The British-owned corporation, headquartered in Memphis, Tenn., announced recently that it was closing its Columbus plant sometime next spring with production operations ceasing almost immediately.

The business which dates back to 1883 has gone through numerous ownerships and name changes. It was originally called the Capital City Dairy Company, then in 1919 became known as Capital City Products. In 1957, it was acquired by Stokely-Van Camp, Inc., then was taken over by an investor group in 1984. Larlshamns AB, a Swedish company, owned the plant from 1988 to 1994, when Associated British Foods bought it. The operation merged with AC Humko in 1996.

CEO Dan Antonelli said the corporation is working out details with the International Brotherhood of Firemen and Oilers, and the International Union of Operating Engineers on severance packages for the 112 employees who will soon be jobless.

Word on the street over a year ago was that the buildings on the 13.5-acre site would be razed to make room for condominiums and apartments. Antonelli said the company hasn't made any decisions in that regard.

 

Modes Music

My good friend Doral Chenoweth recently saluted long-time pianist Sonia Modes in his Columbus Dispatch dining column. I would like to second the motion! Sonia has been - and still is - one of Columbus' greatest treasures. Sonia has tickled the ivories at such noted places as the Desert Inn, the Neil House, the Press Club of Ohio, the Sky Room in the old Deshler Wallick Hotel, the Kahiki, and the Arlington Arms. In recent years, she has been a regular attraction at Bexley's Monk every Monday evening, and at The Top on Wednesday and Saturday nights.

 

 

FYTBPO

Front Yards to Be Proud Of &endash; that's what that acronym means. Here are some more that we have discovered just cruisin' around admiring:

• 978 Mt. Pleasant Ave.: Old-time charm.

• 363 W. 2nd. Ave.: Lots of flowers.

• 365 W. 2nd. Ave.: More of the same.

• 1092 Pennsylvania Ave.: Yea! for hollyhocks!

• 350 W. 1st. Ave.: Pretty petunias.

• 130 W. Price Ave.: A treat for the eyes!

• 301 W. 3rd. Ave.: Beautiful!

• 305 W. 3rd. Ave.: Ditto!

• 414 W. 4th. Ave.: Glorious colors.

• 775 Park St.: Perfect.

 

Music Notes

Here's the Short North Jazz Series schedule for August. All concerts are at the Goodale Park Gazebo at noon and are free. Bring a picnic lunch and relax to the best of Columbus jazz!

• August 6: Hank Marr Sextet with Tom Carroll & Marie Walker.

• August 13: Urban Jazz Coalition.

• August 20: Drums of Steel with Derek DiCenzo.

 

Strada World Cuisine features live jazz every Friday night from 8:00 to 11:00 pm. Sounds like a perfect evening!

• August 4: Tom Carroll and Tim Kimisky.

• August 11: Ed Moed and Roger Hines.

 

&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;&endash;

 

Two of the hottest artists in music today - Tim McGraw and Faith Hill - will open the new Nationwide Arena with two sizzling performances on Sat., Sept. 9 and Sun. Sept. 10 at 8:00 pm. Tickets at Ticketmaster outlets. To charge by phone, call 614/431-3600.

 

Dis 'N' Data

Most Short North art galleries will continue to remain open on Thursday evenings until 9 pm through August. "The Summer Stroll" was organized by the Short North Arts Association.

Hampton Inn & Suites is nearing completion and is scheduled to open in mid-September.

Frank Simonetti, once associated with Damon's, is retiring from his most recent enterprise, Frank's Diner. The popular eatery is up for sale. We'll miss you, Frank!

Dr. Daniel J. Hoch's Columbus Eyeworks, located at Fourth and High, is finally open this month. The brand new offices will offer eye exams, contact lenses, eyewear, laser vision consultation, and just about everything to enhance the quality of your vision.

Disney on Ice will bring Jungle Adventures to Nationwide Arena Sept. 13 through Sept. 17. The ice show extravaganza brings Tarzan, Baloo, King Louie, Simba, and Rafike together live for the first time.

Lisa Garrison-Brandt was recently named publicist for Mid-town Parents and Kids. The organization has numerous activities planned around the calendar. For more information call the director, Sabrina Bobrow at 297-1152, or e-mail her at sabrina@kilcup.org

Toastmasters International is coming to the Short North, The new chapter will meet at 7:30 pm August 23 and 30 at the Stonewall Community Center, 4th and High. For more info call John Rovenolt at 228-0786.

The Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission's Art in the Halls is featuring the drawings and poetry of Steven S. Weilbacher through August 31. This is a show going out of your way to see. MORPC is located at 285 E. Main Street. Hours are 8:00 am to 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday.

Well, that's all for this time. Thanks for bearing with me. You've got what it takes!

Columbus Children's Theatre recently finalized the purchase of the building at 512 N. Park Street from the Kitsmiller family of Canal Winchester. Funds were provided by Olga and Doug Borror. Olga has been a board member for over three years and was recently elected Vice-President. she will eventually succeed Mike Doyle as board president.

 

Subsidy Sought

David Wible, a former Red Roof Inns sales executive, has been named executive director of the North Market effective August 7.

Wible replaces Nancy Duncan Porter who will be leaving her post as acting executive director of the North Market, a post she has filled for over a year.

The market has recently requested a $150,000 annual subsidy from the City of Columbus. Porter said the subsidy would help the market meet its annual budget of approximately $650.000. The adminis- tration of Mayor Michael B. Coleman is in favor of the request, according to Mark Barbash, the city's director of trade and development. The building the market occupies today was purchased from the Nationwide Development Corporation.

The North Market is located in a key section of the city which is experiencing rapid development. It is located about half a block from the Greater Columbus Convention Center, which is expanding its facilities and the new Hampton Suites hotel, and not more than a block or so from the new Nationwide Arena. It is also flanked by a row of new parking garages.

The market is home to merchants selling everything from fresh produce, fish, meats, and bakery goods to hot food entrees that can be eaten on the premises or taken out.

 

 

Jeffrey Place

Concorde Capital, a Columbus real-estate and development company, has announced plans for a $100 million project that will transform over 36.5 acres of mostly unused land north of downtown into a multi-purpose development of 160 single family homes, 500 rental apartments, 75,000 sq. feet of office space, parkland, and 8,000 square feet of retail space.

The site, named Jeffrey Place, is just north of I-670, and is bounded by North Fourth Street on the west, and extends north beyond E. Fifth Avenue. Much of the area at one time was occupied by buildings of the Jeffrey Mining Products Company. In 1987, Abbott Laboratories bought 33 acres, but never developed the land.

Joe Recchie, Concorde Capital CEO, said that construction will commence this fall, after environmental and economic-feasibility studies are completed. He and his investors believe there is a demand for more housing near Downtown. He said that the development was partly in response to Mayor Michael B. Coleman's challenge to improve the quality of life Downtown.

Columbus City Council President Matt Habash believes the undertaking has a lot of merit. Andy Klein, Italian Village Society president, commented that it is still a bit early for his group to support the project. Recchie has indicated that Concorde Capital hopes to conform with neighborhood guidelines.

In a related project, Preferred Real Estate plans to transform Jeffrey Mining Company property into office space for the State Library of Ohio and a telecommunications company.


(From the July 2000 issue)

Dog Daze

With the Dog Days of summer upon us, we thought it would be cool to run a picture of a cat on our front cover. That's hot weather logic for you, isn't it? Problem is, we aren't quite sure who this little guy or gal is, who he (or she) belongs to, or who took the picture. All we know for sure, and wanted to share with you, was that this cute little pussinality sure looks like a model for "Got Milk?"!

 

Hiccup

What the heck is the proper response when someone hiccups? When they sneeze, we say "Gesundheit!" or "God bless you!" As a matter of fact, I did a little research on the sneeze bit. It seems in olden times when a person sneezed, it was thought that sneezing opened up a door to their soul, an easy entrance for the devil or other evil spirits to enter. Thus, the "God Bless you!" to ward off such unwanted incursions. But, I repeat, what do we say when a person hiccups? The only response I've ever heard was a long time ago when veteran ad-man Bob Hutchison would say, "Bring it up again and we'll vote on it!" What do our readers think? Any ideas out there? If so, how about sharing them with the rest of us hics.

 

Leaf Me Alone

Repeat after me: I hate leaf blowers, I hate leaf blowers, I hate leaf blowers. I would like to disembowel all leaf blowers and consign them to the nether regions. Leaf blowers are the bane of the earth. So inefficient. So much noise. Like a donkey being tortured. Down with leaf blowers. A pox on the man who invented these noisy little monsters. Bring back the noble broom!

 

Racy Reading

At Home in the World by Joyce Maynard is a book I read recently and found strangely fascinating.

Joyce Maynard is a young woman who wrote an article for The New York Times Magazine, had her picture on the front cover, where it was seen by reclusive J. D. Salinger of Catcher in the Rye fame who proceeded to write her a letter. Of course, she replied. He answered right back, and so on ad nauseam in one of the most blatant cases of seduction by correspondence in our time. No matter that he was fifty-three and she was eighteen. No matter that there's a lot of banal, boring stuff here. Surprisingly enough, the book is a good read. The most interesting part, naturally, is when she moves in with "Jerry."

Salinger emerges as a crusty, cynical, choleric individual who lives on nuts, raw vegetables, fruit, and barely-cooked ground lamb patties. He doesn't complain too much about Joyce's oral ministra-tions. In fact, that's all he gets because Joyce can't seem to get her thing-a-ma-jig open without getting excruciating headaches.

Salinger, the cagey sage, dishes out plenty of advice, mostly sour grapes, to his young protégée, who continues to climb the rungs to writing success. So it goes for a while - actually considerably less than a year - before the seducer gives the starry-eyed seducee the old heave-ho.

It takes Joyce a long time to get over this rejection, but like most of us, she does. Eventually she gets married to a guy who comes across as a nerd, has kids (she finally got her whatz-it-called open) and later discovers, through her research for this book, that good ol' Jerry boy had already corresponded (read trolled) with a lot of other young women. Well, of all things!

This book is in its second printing and a handsome paperback edition is available at local bookstores. If you can call reading about someone else's agony enjoyable, it's a romp.

 

FYTBPO

Front Yards to Be Proud Of &endash; that's what that acronym means. Here are some more that we have discovered just cruisin' around admiring:

• 207 Wilber Ave: Simplicity wins.

• 1276 Neil Ave : It's about yuccas.

• 775 Park St: Beautiful garden.

• 895 Dennison Ave: Roses.

• 224 Wilber Ave: Lilies and seraphs

• 919 Neil Ave: Lovely birch tree.

• 236 W. 2nd Ave: More roses.

 

Bubbly Bottles

Bottled water seems to be ever more popular. If you would like a real treat, try Apollinaris. It's a mineral water from the Rhine Valley, naturally effervescent, with just a slight taste of lemon. Delicious! The only place I've found it is the Grandview Big Bear. Look for it in the German Food section. Er, ah, actually our discerning Copy Editor, bon vivant David Thomson, discovered this delicious natural beverage.

 

Buyer Beware

Just when I thought most check-out-counter shortchange artists were guys, I got ripped off by a young woman. Didn't discover I was five bucks short 'til I got home. An honest mistake? Who knows? Maybe. Maybe not. The best bet is to always let the management of your local supermarket know when you think you've been ripped off.

 

Tenants Taken

Commercial landlord/tenant relations are not only a matter of interest to the two parties most involved, they also affect other merchants, service providers, customers and, eventually, the entire community.

That's why some recent egregious rent increases in the heart of the Short North have been sending shock waves throughout the neighborhood. We're talking here about doubling the already substantial rent on faithful long-time leasees. C'mon now, Mr. Landlord. This is price gouging of the worst kind.

Hey folks, let's have some letters from anyone who knows of similar dastardly deeds. We'd love to print them!

 

Dis 'N' Data

"Reality and Interpretation, 20th Century Clothing and Illustration," continues to garner plaudits from far and wide. Call the Riffe Gallery at 644-9624 ahead of time and curator Charles Kleibacker might give you a personal tour. You'll have to hurry because the show closes July 9. (See The Muse on page 7.) Up next at Riffe, "Metaphor and Irony: Czech Scenic and Costume Design 1920-1999," opening July 27.

Tim Wagner, a Hunter Avenue resident, was recently named the first director of the Short North Special Improvement District.

Walter Kulash, a nationally-recog-nized traffic management consultant, and the firm of Glatting Jackson of Orlando, Florida, are preparing a traffic manage-ment plan to cope with problems arising from the Spring Sandusky Interchange project.

Long-time Dennison Place resident Douglas Lach will appear on the popular Jeopardy TV show Thursday, July 6. Sabrina Bobrow invites interested resi-dents to join her at her home (1313 Forsythe) for watch-Doug-perform event.

Let's hope the squabble between developer Joe Armeni and all the rest of us can be solved in a hurry. Seems to me a bike path along the scenic Olentangy takes precedence over one man's ambitions.

 

July Jazz

Here's the Short North Jazz Series schedule for July.
All concerts are at the Goodale Park Gazebo at noon and free.

• July 9: High Street Stompers.

• July 16: Q.E.D.

• July 30: Rick Brunetto Big Band with Dwight Lennox.

 

Wild World

My good friends Eddy and Jeannine Farmer will be exhibiting their wonderful wildlife photography at MetroPark's Inniswood Gardens during the month of July.

 


(From the June 2000 issue)

Sweet Summer

I always feel a certain sadness at the passing of spring. Probably because it was so long awaited through the winter months. Then "poooof," it's passed as quickly as an April shower.

Now we enter the season of summer with all its pleasures. Up and down Neil Avenue and all the tributary streets, roses have become sunsets to be picked and brought indoors. Robins, their bills stuffed with baby food, try their best to feed a family of quadruplets.

On her wedding day, the plain little girl next door &endash; now gowned in white &endash; has suddenly become a beautiful woman.

Growling power mowers give lawns a haircut, and the clip-clip of shears transform hedges into stylish sculpture.

Kids love summer. Along with comic books, they collect skinned knees, baseball cards, poison ivy, new computer games, sunburn, crops of new freckles &endash; and drink their weight in soft drinks.

Sunlight sparkles on the pond in Goodale Park. There is the quiet pleasure of tending a garden. A good weeding session can be better therapy than a trip to the psychiatrist's couch. Yard sale junkies are in their glory as they acquire other people's cast-offs.

Plump, juicy strawberries lie heavy on the vine. They await their final destiny: Sliding down an ice cream slope or perched atop a piece of shortcake. Frosty slices of watermelon and the sweet aroma of honeydew and cantaloupe set our tastebuds into frenzies of delight.

Summer afternoons are also good for daydreams and making lazy z-z-z-z's in a hammock &endash; with a pitcher of iced tea or homemade lemonade close at hand.

Ahh, summer! It's what we've been waiting for all year. Like a small child who refuses to sleep, even the sun stays up late. Then, the fireflies come out, signaling messages of love in Morse code.

 

Deli Dalliance

Didya ever pay any attention to the folks who work in the grocery store delis? O course you have! Just trying to get waited on, for one thing. Five or six other people invariably ahead of you. Everybody glancing at everybody else to see who's next and making sure nobody cheats. But aside from all that, did you ever notice the daily sit-com going on as you stand there, waiting to get some service. The guys and gals that work behind those deli counters are as entertaining as a cast in some on-going whacky TV show. We learn all about them. As they wield their knives, chop and dice, stir and mix, they gossip about their spouses, people they're going with, their neighbors, their children. They yell at each other, poke each other, tell jokes, laugh and cry. Are they oblivious to all this public airing of their lives? It's hard to say. But, hey, that's show biz!

 

FYTBPO

Front Yards to Be Proud Of &endash; that's what that acronym means, and here are a few good examples. More will be published during the summer.

• 314 King Avenue: two beautiful ginkgo trees, great landscaping.

• 1319 Hunter Avenue: Poppies, sculpted stones, a lovely gate.

• 1343 Forsythe Avenue: A pleasure to behold.

• 196 West Fourth Avenue: Look for the daisies.

• 1127 Highland Avenue: A treasure, almost hidden.

 

Dis 'N' Data

A great new animated electric sign downtown is now drawing attention to a very fine establishment. We're talking about the new Elevator Brewery and Draught Haus, formerly the Clock Restaurant. Owners Ryan and Dick Stevens have added some modern touches, but retained all the wonderful interior craftsmanship. Expect a wide variety of brews, culinary art by chef Bradley Balch, billiards, darts, and happy hour prices.

Another reminder: Don't forget to get your buns over to COMFEST June 30 - July 2, and don't forget to celebrate the 4th by turning out for the DooDah Parade!

Adam Grimm, a 21-year-old Fine Arts major at Columbus College of Art & Design, took top honors in the most recent Federal Duck Stamp Art Contest sponsored by the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Adam's painting of a mottled duck bested 242 other entries and will become the 2000-2001 Federal Duck Stamp which goes on sale July 1.

Any current high school or college graduate will receive a complimentary entrée of their choice, courtesy of Chef Travis Kawasaki at Strada World Cuisine. Just bring your diploma in sometime in June.

Call Carla Hill at 740-548-7006 for details about the June 9 Celebrity Waiters Luncheon at the Hyatt Regency.

Photographer Ron Johnson has paid a beautiful tribute to his grandmother, Trilba, on his Web site which can be accessed at: celebrationofwoman.com

Gripes: Hard-to-read cash register receipts so faintly printed they're almost impossible to read. Especially from an office supply store! Get real, guys! Put a new tape in those machines!

 

If you like natural history and would like to study up on Ohio wildlife, go to: http://www.netwalk.com/vireo/boaf.html

 

Sam Says

Sam the Cat, our poetry editor, says get off your duff and send in your poems. You'll get ten bucks, in addition to the joy of being published, and seeing your creativity on our Web site at www. shortnorth.com. Send your poems to Sam the Cat, Poetry Editor, Short North Gazette, 404 Thurber Drive W., Suite 9, Columbus, OH 43215. Do it now!

 


(From the May 2000 issue)

Census Compliance

I set aside an entire afternoon for filling out my U.S. Census form last month because I instantly realized this was not going to be a simple task.

The first part was a snap, all about Person #1. I figured that out easy enough and sped through the Q's and A's like an old pro. The trouble began when I got to Person #2. Since I live alone, I was stumped for a while. But then, good ol' American that I am, I ploughed ahead with a "Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead" attitude, and within a couple of hours I'd filled out the entire form. I mean all the way through Person # 12.

As I have already stated this was no easy job, but I instantly recognized it as an opportunity to exercise whatever writing talents I have, so I dug in, and before the sun set, I had triumphantly finished the entire form. Better than that, I attached about fifty additional pages of biographical data and personal profiles about the Alice in Wonderland people I'd invented. I figured this would lead an office full of compilers to early retirement.

A dozen people packed into my two-bedroom apartment? Hardly seems plausible now, does it?

Just kiddin', folks.

Crafty Crows

Speaking of demographics, you must be aware of the exploding crow population in Columbus. There are crows high and low: shopping centers, residen-

tial streets, backyards, McDonald's drive thrus, everywhere! Why MacCrows? My explanation runs like this.

Crows are brainy birds. When you think they're just cawing, they're actually talking shop. Someone once counted over a hundred different crow words. Add a few thousand inflections and you can easily see these crow guys and gals are a smart bunch.

As I have it figured, a few years ago, at one of their big country roosts, a real ambitious crow with political aspirations gave a speech and he admonished them:

"Go to the City. That's where the future is! We've had it with farmers eternally banging away at us."

So here they sit and shit. By the thousands, and growing. I sorta like to hear them. Makes me feel like I'm living in the country. Oh! I almost forgot to ask. Do you know what they call a bunch of crows who stick together?

Vel-crows.

 

Apartments

A Good Idea: The apartments that are going to be built at 32 Warren Street in the old buildings that for many years housed the Spencer Walker Printing Co. A few years back, Towny Quinn purchased the property to store stock from The Living Room, his Short North furniture store. Quinn and his sons Steve and Dan are waiting for the permits which will allow them to proceed with construction of the $3 million 24-unit complex of upscale apartments. The project will be the most ambitious development in the Short North since the 153 apartment units of Victorian Gate, which opened in 1993.

Debatably Not Such a Good Idea: The 480-unit new Meridian Apartments between West Fifth Ave. and King Ave. What effect this project will have on traffic in the area remains to be seen, but I shudder at the prospect of increased bumper-to-bumper traffic jams in that neighborhood. Can you imagine what it's going to be like if all these folks go to work at the same time!

Dis 'N' Data

A belated congratulations to Dennison Place resident Marilyn Howard who recently received her Ph.D. in American History from OSU.

A one-year lease on a 2000 VW Beetle from the Midwestern Auto Group will be the raffle grand prize at this year's Columbus Human Rights Campaign annual fundraiser. Tickets can be pur-chased at the door, or call 265-7303.

Eight days in solitary confinement! That was the fate of M. J. Gibson's cat, Sam, who got himself accidentally locked in the storage locker room at Tivoli Apartments. Bottom line: He's OK, just got a lot thinner! (Not much of a mouse population down there.)

The Gazette's Prolific Poet Laureate and cat lover, Rose Ann Spaith, has won two awards in the Pennsylvania Poetry Society's 48th Annual Contest. We're so proud of you, Rose Ann.

Three cheers to the Columbus Foundation for their recent $10,000 grant to the Godman Guild. The money will be spent on a gazebo and improve-ments to the Weinland Park garden that the guild maintains. What a beautiful contribution to the community.

Daniel Hock, O.D. will shortly open Columbus Eyeworks on the corner of 4th and High. This is where the old Caravan Bar used to be. Ironic, isn't it. Now, instead of drinking yourself blind, you can go in and get your sight restored, or at least rehabilitated. They will offer complete eye examinations, contact lenses, and all types of eyewear. Look for an early June opening.

SparkSpace is a novel idea. It's a professional meeting space designed to inspire and energize group creativity. Call 299-6995 for details.

Enlightenment Candle Making and Embellishments has moved down the street from their former location to 1105 Pennsylvania Ave. at the corner of Third Avenue. Check 'em out!

Joel Teaford is the new Executive Director of the Columbus Neighborhood Design Assistance Center. The Center facilitates physical and economic improvement in urban, pedestrian-oriented neighborhoods. Persons interested in using the Center's services should call Dave Ellis at 221-5001.

Wonder why I hear far away train whistles in so many movies I see nowadays at AMC Lennox? For me, the lonely, mournful sounds not only add a Thomas Wolfe piquancy to the films but allow me to rewrite the scenarios to my own liking.

Check out the fascinating Downtown Nesting Peregrine Falcon Web site at: http://www.dnr.state.oh.us/odnr/wildlife/diversity/falcon/peregrine.html

Whenever I see somebody popping an aspirin with coffee, a cola drink, beer, or even fruit juice, I can hardly keep myself from running over to them and shouting, "No! No! Don't do that, unless you want to burn a hole in your stomach real quick." Of course, I don't do that. I just sit there quietly, watching them slowly commit suicide, probably sucking on a coffin-nail too.

 

Sam Says

Sam the Cat, our poetry editor, says get off your duff and send in your poems. You'll get ten bucks, in addition to the joy of being published, and seeing your creativity on our Web site at www. shortnorth.com. Send your poems to Sam the Cat, Poetry Editor, Short North Gazette, 404 Thurber Drive, Suite 9, Columbus, OH 43215. Do it now!

 


(From the April 2000 issue)

Big Bucks!

I read with great pleasure in the local press recently of The Ohio State University's decision to seek a commer-cial book dealer to operate its campus bookstores. "Way to go!" I thought to myself with satisfaction. "Exactly the right step in attaining a totally corporate-oriented college. The way to really put some significant meaning into the expression "Big Bucks" and at the same time give us taxpayers a break!

We already have the Schott spot, and a football stadium being remodeled and enlarged for increased media accommoda- tions and executive largess (read increased revenues), exclusive soft drink contracts, food franchises, and who knows what else.

So, in the spirit of the times, I have a few friendly suggestions to make that should launch OSU into the 21st century with all the affluence and opulence it so richly deserves. And, bear in mind, I am absolutely delighted that the university fathers in their infinite wisdom have finally realized that the whole school is a cash cow, not just an athletic department.

For starters, how about the faculty itself! Why shouldn't they be subsidized Celebrity Profs, endorsed by leading businesses, wearing the good ol' corporate colors, earning the plaudits and tidy profits they've struggled for?

Next, we could proceed to profitize the various colleges within the university.

There are untold resources here that have lain dormant for years that are just waiting to be extracted. To run through them briefly, how about a company like Buckeye Egg Farm taking over the College of Agriculture? Friskies could put the College of Veterinarian Medicine on a long, profitable leash, and any thinking person would agree that the

financially strapped Medical Center would be better off clasped close to the warm bosom of a major HMO.

Environmental Studies could be funded by the friendly folks from Monsanto Chemical, or perchance Dupont, the dudes that gave us napalm. The English Department, and maybe the whole arts and sciences caboodle, could find solace with Amazon. com. Computer Studies? Microsoft, of course! The residence halls? Trump 'em! Economics and Business Organization? Get a big bank - and give 'em exclusive ATM rights on campus!

See what I mean? The sky's the limit in good ol' academe! And don't forget the casino, and the adjoining hotel, and the cheerleaders brought to you by Victoria's Secret! And if you're planning on attending school, don't forget to bring plenty of money in case there are plenty of tuition increases!

Tummy Treat

Here's a snack I like a lot. Buy a pound of prepared chicken salad from a grocery deli, add an equal amount of vanilla yogurt and a couple dozen chopped grapes. It's the perfect fridge food. Spread it on crackers, bagels, English muffins, toast, or your toes, if you're so inclined.

Enjoying Eden

There are only a few weeks left to see "Illusions of Eden: Visions of the American Heartland" now exhibiting at the Columbus Museum of Art. Believe me, this is a once-in-a-lifetime show, something you'll remember for a long time to come. It is packed with raw emotion, drama, beauty, goodness - and the very ugly, bad side of life. That's why it's great. It has all the elements of the conflict between good and evil. For me, it was as exciting as going to a great movie, or theatrical, or musical event. Go now, before it's too late. You'll thank me forever.

Gazette Growth

New German Village locations where you can pick up a Gazette include: Hausfrau Haven, Cup O' Joe, Italia Studio, the Clarmont Motor Inn, the Round Bar, and the Tremont.

Sox Pox

"What a wonderfully absurd and delightful world we live in!" I wrote recently. I was talking about all the fascinating bits and pieces of data that have come to light while researching material for the long-running Thurber series.

Now, I can truthfully say it's an even smaller and more interconnected world than I intimated last month. I've been reading a very interesting biography of Truman Capote by George Plimpton and, Wow!, all of a sudden I stumbled across an absolutely smashing anecdote about Capote, and guess who else? Sure, none other than James Thurber. And this little story is a gem.

Seems that Capote, when he was quite young, worked for a while - a very short while - at The New Yorker. While there, Thurber talked him into accompanying him on several evening trysts he was accustomed to keeping outside his marriage. Truman would sit in the parlor, reading a magazine, I suppose, while Thurber and his ladyfriend attended to their needs.

When Thurber emerged from the bedroom naked, Truman's job was to dress him. Remember, Thurber didn't see too well, so this was a necessary little chore Truman was supposed to perform. Thing is, he resented having to do this, so he avenged himself by always putting Thurber's socks back on him inside-out, knowing that Helen Thurber who had dressed him that morning, would notice something amiss when she undressed him. True? Who knows? Funny? You betcha!

Dis 'N' Data

A belated congratulations to Dennison Place resident Marilyn Howard who recently received her Ph.D. in American History from OSU.

Three cheers to the Columbus Foundation for their recent $10,000 grant to the Godman Guild. The money will be spent on a gazebo and improve-ments to the Weinland Park garden that the guild maintains. What a beautiful contribution to the community.

Check out the art cars Saturday, April 1 outside Little Brother's, from 3:00 to 9:00 pm.


(From the March 2000 issue)

Quartet at K2U

The Oxford String Quartet closes out the Short North Chamber Music Series starting at 2 p.m., March 26 at K2U, 641 N. High Street. Founded in 1946 at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, the current quartet has performed throughout the United States and Europe. Make an occasion of it and enjoy some of the fine food you'll find at this outstanding restaurant. Enjoy too the wonderful murals by Kent Rigsby's father!

Ecstasy of Eden

I dare not infringe on Liz James, the Muse, who so ably does our art news, but I have this great urge to shout to the high heavens my praise of Illusions of Eden: Visions of the American Heartland now exhibiting at the Columbus Muse-um of Art. This is a must-see show, one that imparts startling surprises and emotional tugs at the heart all the way through its sprawling four-gallery space.

Over 100 paintings and photographs by major artists capture the pain and the ecstasy of American life in the midwest from the 1920s through the 1940s. Major artists include Grant Wood, Thomas Hart Benton, Wright Morris, Clarence Carter, John Steuart Curry, Charles Burchfield, Russell Lee, Columbus' own Emerson Burkhart, and Margaret Bourke-White. More in Liz's column.

BexleyBundles

The Gazette can now be found at a number of locations in Bexley. Look for them at the Leo Yassenoff Center, the Drexel Theatre, Bexley's Monk, the Public Library, Grinders, Starbuck's, and Cup o' Joe.

Hidden Houses

The entire concept of finding our way around urban areas is based on the names of streets and house numbers. Why is it then that so many houses have numbers that are hard to find and, if you are lucky enough to find them, hard to read. Stingy little numbers in hard to find locations. It's sheer lunacy!

Amazingly, many businesses are guilty of the same sins. You would think that a retail store, an office, or whatever would want their street number displayed as prominently as possible so that new customers would have an easy time finding them. You look in the phone book, find the proper address, drive across town, and duh! One store after another, big and little, without any kind of a number. It's a case of hide-and-seek, find us if you can, sucker. If the retailers are this dumb, how can you trust what they're peddling?

Spring Songs

My bird clock is singing again! It wasn't the batteries, it was a little red button. Seems like it just needed a push! Now my birds are in full song: the robin, the Carolina wren, the timorous titmouse, the chickadee, the honky-tonky Canada geese, the hooty-tooty great horned owl, and all the others. And outside, in the real world, I'm beginning to hear birdsong around the Short North: house finches, cardinals, and robins mostly. But spring, she is a-cumin. It's the best part of the year. All anticipation!

Incantations

What a wonderfully absurd and delightful world we live in! While researching material for my long-running Thurber series, I came across a reference to Millicent Easter and how she arranged for Emerson Burkhart to do a portrait of Thurber's mother, Mame. Well, I knew Millicent, and Emerson was one of my best friends. Regretfully, I don't remember him ever mentioning Mame, but I can't help but wonder what he would have thought of this dauntless little lady with the irrepressable sense of humor. Oh, if he could only whisper in my ear now and give me the real low-down! Since I still have some of Emerson's ashes, perhaps I could get them out, perform a little ritual, and conjure up his spirit. "Alas, poor Burkhart, this is Tom. Speak to me of this strange little lady with the sharp wit of a born comedian. "

Dis 'N' Data

Sharon Weiss's Antiques & Art on Poplar will retain the same name for a while even though she's moved to 20 E. Lincoln Street.

Paul Robinette recently opened a unique shop at 7 Buttles with an interesting selection of candles, cards, and coffee cups.

Don't forget that Byzantium has moved from their digs on King Avenue to 1088 North High Street. There's plenty of parking right at the front door.

Blazer's Pub, small and cozy though it is, has its own ATM machine.

We mentioned last month that J & G Diner has some of the best java in town. It will make you happier even on the brightest of days!

Carl's Antiques & Collectibles is moving to E. Main at Cassiday in Bexley and will be open by April 1.

 

More Movies

As I promised, here are more 20th century movies that I saw and that I enjoyed. Dances With Wolves, with Kevin Costner and Mary McDonnell; The Young Indiana Jones, with River Phoenix (This was a made for HBO movie, I believe); Dead Poets Society, with Robin Williams; Titanic (of course); Ragtime, based on a E. L. Doctorow novel; Apocalypse Now, with Martin Sheen, Marlon Brando, and Robert Duvall; Days of Heaven, with Richard Gere, Brooke Adams, Sam Shepard, and lots of wonderful scenery; Annie Hall, with who else but Woody Allen and Diane Keaton; One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, with Jack Nicholson and Louise Fletcher; Midnight Cowboy, with Dustin Hoffman and John Voight; and Easy Rider, with Peter Fonda, Dennis Hopper, Jack Nicholson, and Karen Black. (I had drinks with Karen once out at the old Dell Restaurant.) Here lately, I might add Inside John Malkovitch. It was really imaginative! That's all folks!

Sam Says

Sam the Cat, our poetry editor, says send in your poems. You'll also get ten bucks, in addition to the joy of being published and seeing your creativity on our Web site at www.shortnorth.com. Send your poems to Sam the Cat, Poetry Editor, Short North Gazette, 404 Thurber Drive, Suite 9, Columbus, OH 43215. Do it now!

 

(From the February 2000 issue)

Caffeine Cloud

How's this for a movie scenario? Medics at a local hospital give a Grand-view man a physical examination and find that he has extremely high levels of caffeine in his body. When asked what his coffee or tea consumption is, the man says he has never drunk coffee or tea in his life. "How about cola drinks?" the medical men ask. "Nope," replies the man. "Never touch them either. Just hard liquor."

That's when one of the young M.D.s makes the discovery of a lifetime, resulting in a medical breakthrough that will surely enhance his career. Initially, fellow doctors and nurses think he has gone off his rocker because he's running around the examining room incoherently shouting something that sounds like Stauf's! Stauf's! Stauf's!.

At first they think he is barking, having possibly contracted some canine condition. But when the nurses finally quiet him down, he explains that the man being examined has inhaled caffeine. Interviewed later by the international press, the young medic apologizes for his earlier behavior and attributes his barking and running around the examining room to the sudden rush he had felt - he compared the feeling to what Dr. Salk and Madam Curie must have experienced.

"What tipped you off?" asked a saucer-eyed correspondent from NightLine.

The doctor grinned. "It was when a nurse opened a window and a southerly breeze wafted in the wonderful, full-bodied essence of coffee. It was coffee roasting time at Stouf's!"

Silent Spring

Not only does there seem to be a scarcity of Cardinals in the neighborhood but, to my consternation, my bird clock is on the blink. Nary a chirp out of it anymore.

It's not the batteries. I've already checked them, and the clock itself works fine. It's just the birds. They've fled. Maybe they went south for the winter. I dunno. I miss them. Well, maybe not the Great Horned Owl. He used to scare the bejesus out of me with his sudden hoot, hoot, hoot.

But I do miss all the rest of the merry little band of musicians. I wonder where they are? Every now and then I think I hear a whisper of song, but then decide it's just my imagination. They're probably off and gone, maybe joining the jubilant flock of phantom birds down at Sugar Grove that I write about on page 31 of this issue.

Romantic Radio

French composer Erik Satie said, "Love is a sickness." Claude Debussy was in love with a woman who shot herself over him. Franz Liszt wrote, "How ardent on my lips is your last kiss. I will die if I do not see you."

Romance, with all its elation and anguish, is soon to be on the air when Classical 89.7 WOSU-FM presents a new one-hour series entitled The Romantic Hours, hosted by Grammy-nominated recording artist Mona Golabek. With her engaging commen-tary and alluring voice, Golabek melds together the great words of love, gleaned from poems, letters, diaries, and literature with classical music.

It's all on 89.7 WOSU-FM starting Saturday, February 26 at 9 pm.

More Movies

As I said last month, everyone's making lists. Here are more of my favorite movies, my personal pick of Hollywood's best pics. Films are not listed in any particular order. Every now and then I'll add to the list. Let 'er roll!

Empire of the Sun, directed by Steven Spielberg; To Kill A Mockingbird, with Gregory Peck; A Raisin in the Sun, with Sidney Poitier and Ruby Dee; Beloved, with Oprah; The Night of the Hunter, with Robert Mitchum and Shelley Winters; The Shape of Things to Come, based on a story by H. G. Wells; The Little Shop of Horrors, a great flick for plant lovers, and The Bridge on the River Kwai, with Alec Guinness. More to come later

Dis 'N' Data

The Lawyers Performance Ensemble, a private non-profit organization, is presenting "Gross Indecency: The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde" at the Davis Discovery Center, 349 Franklin Avenue, at 8 pm Feb. 4, 5, 11, 12, 18, and 19, and 2 pm on Feb. 6, 13, and 20. Tickets may be reserved by calling 470-2708.

Don't forget that Byzantium has moved from their digs on King Avenue to 1088 North High Street. Thank the city fathers responsible for the new traffic light at Vine and Park. This was badly needed!

Ursula Lanning and Barbara Vogel, of the Lanning Gallery, are recuperating from recent operations and both are doing fine.

Shades of our cinema past! Hedy Lamarr died recently at age 86. She was a beautiful woman and will be missed. Sarong, Hedy!

A new photograhy business, com- bining modern darkroom facilities, in-studio and on-location shooting and, perhaps later on, a gallery, has opened at 1044 Noth High Street. LeeAnn McGuire heads up the photo shoot part of the operation and Heidirose Forby is in charge of Obscura, the photo-processing part of the business.

Popular guy Jim Hill had a great January vacation in the Florida Keys when he took a whole gang of his friends with him to share the good times. Jim says that Georgia Morgan, who is now living in the Keys, said to say hello to her many friends in Columbus.

Want some of the best coffee in town? Try the java at the J & G Diner. It will make you happy on the darkest of days!

 

(From the January 2000 issue)

Plastic Spastic

"Get into plastics!" Wasn't that the neat punch line in The Graduate that the future father-in-law suggested to the Dustin Hoffman character?

Well, it's happened to me recently. I have gotten into plastics. Big time, maybe long overdue, maybe not. I was one of the world's last holdouts, lugged my groceries home from the store in paper bags that were subsequently used to store my garbage. All of that has changed recently because of an awesome influence, a force field with skirts, a veritable torna-do of cleanliness and everything-in-its-place that entered my life a while back. Let's just call her Ms. Clean. And be forewarned: this business involving the efficient use of plastics and packaging definitely involves some age-old, funda-mental differences between the sexes.

It's like James Thurber said: "I hate women because they always know where things are." He left out the part about women's firm belief that everything should be packaged. Not any old pack-age, either. Don't fall into that trap. I'm talking about different kinds of packaging for every different kind of thing.

OK, here's an inventory of products in just one of my kitchen cabinets: a 200-ft. roll of Kroger's Plastic Wrap; a 250 sq. ft. roll of Cling Wrap (with 50 free extra ft. inside; Hefty One Zip Storage Slider Bags (quart size); Hefty One Zip Storage Slider Bags (gallon size); Glad Food Storage Bags (gallon size with 13 extra bags); Hefty Sandwich Bags (150, with ties); Hefty Baggies (75 of 'em, gallon size); and 75-sq. ft. of Target Aluminum Foil. I'll have to admit, that last one I had used before.

There's some genius, of course, in knowing what to store in each container, and what to wrap with what. With so many different things to choose from, this can often be a daunting task. Do I put the left-over pizza in a Hefty Sandwich Bag, a One Zip Slider, swaddle it in a Cling Wrap, or wrap it in aluminum foil? Rather than face all these weighty decisions, sometimes I just throw it away. And the half-a-cucumber. Where does it go? Or the leftover lasagna? Or the celery sticks? Do I dare store a leftover White Castle in a One Zip Slider? If I make a wrong decision, I will surely hear about it.

There's more! Lurking under the sink is an armada of germ-killing products, including Goo Gone, O-Cel-O Sponges (kill germs in the sponge); extra plastic bottles of Ultra Dawn; little plastic fishnet packs of Multi-Surface Scrubs; Ajax Cleanser with Bleach (now with an easy-rinse formula); boxes of Irish Spring soap, window spray and, of course, the tall-size Glad Kitchen Bags (13-gal. capacity, with drawstrings). These are what I call garbage bags but evidently that kind of language is too down-to-earth for the manufacturers.

I won't mention all the innovations that have now improved our office working space. Many of these involve plastic packaging of one kind or another. Such products are good for storing miscellaneous papers, clippings, photos, and what-nots. The nice, proper word for this kind of thing is archiving. In this business there's a lot of archiving, on every hand, and underfoot, too. We do a lot of archiving. I have to admit that in the office, especially, life is better now. I don't have to spend half of my lifetime looking for things that have mysteriously disappeared.

Movie Magic

Everyone's making lists. Here is one of mine: the best movies I've ever seen. My personal pic pix of Hollywood's best. Films are not listed in any particular order. Every now and then I'll add to the list. Let 'er roll!

The Trip to Bountiful, with Geraldine Page; Der Boot (The Boat); Dog Day Afternoon, with Al Pacino; Papillon, with Steve McQueen and Dustin Hoffman; Paper Moon, with Ryan and Tatum O'Neal; Once Upon a Time in the West (if not one of the best, then one of the worst), with Henry Fonda, Claudia Cardinale and Charles Bronson; 2001: A Space Odyssey, directed by Stanley Kubrick; Young Frankenstein, with Gene Wilder, and A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, with Zero Mostel, Phil Silvers, and Buster Keaton.

Dis 'n' Data

Here are some reflections on the magazines that I read in my library: the New Yorker seems to be dead in the water. Few news-making interviews, nothing really controversial. Vanity Fair, on the other hand, remains great with lots of zesty stuff. George is sometimes interesting and easily worth the money just for the story in the December-January issue about extremist Uncle Fester. Esquire is coming up fast on the inside rail with some great interviews. Examples: Conversations with Nick Nolte in the November issue, and a spell-binding story about on-the-lam alleged murderer Ian Einhorn in December.

The new 504 Club on the corner of Spruce and Vine is awesome! It combines multi-levels, three bars, superb lighting, and such exotic adventures as skyline dancing. Acoustics are great, the personnel are friendly, and the drinks are generous. Owners Tony Ganakes and Dorothy Stanley have a big winner here.

A tip passed on from the Village Vibe: If your VCR has a year setting, which most do, the programmed recording feature has not been working since the first of the year, but don't throw it away. Set it for the year 1972 because the days are the same as for the year 2000. The manufacturers won't tell you this because they want you to run out and buy a new one.

Not long ago the brick structure at 1088 North High Street was a run down eye-sore. Now, after several months of rigorous renovation inside and out, it's beautiful! A building to be proud of - and the soon-to-be home of Byzantium.

And, right down the street at 290 North High (formerly the site of the Metropolis Motorcycle Shop) is the old/new home of the much-anticipated 2Co's Cabaret - a spin-off of Shadowbox Cabaret. PR Director Katy Psenicka says the new group will feature one-act plays, live acoustic music, dance, and poetry. There will also be a gallery space for art exhibits which will be open on Hop nights. Plans call for an early spring opening.

Sam Says

Sam the Cat, our poetry editor, says send in your poems. You'll also get ten bucks, in addition to the joy of being published, and seeing your creativity on our Web site at www.shortnorth.com. Send your poems to Sam the Cat, Poetry Editor, Short North Gazette, 404 Thurber Drive, Suite 9, Columbus, OH 43215


(December '99)

Happy Holidays

Just beyond the skyward stab of downtown skyscrapers lies the Short North, never more attractive than during the holiday season. Decorations and Christmas lights endow the streets with a special charm. The shops and galleries, wonderful, friendly places at any time of the year, in this season are the answer to many a shopper's prayer. For here, in the Short North, one can find extraordinary gifts that will be loved and long remembered by the most discriminating.

And I have not mentioned the many fine restaurants and cozy cafes that will add additional cheer and comfort to any excursion into our neighborhood. So, you get the idea. If you haven't been here, this is a cordial welcome to come and join us during this festive time of year. If you live here or visit us regularly, you are blessed.

 

Shadowbox Shows

Shadowbox Cabaret recently signed a five-year lease for the building that formerly housed a motorcycle club at 790 N. High Street. Steve Guyer, president of the musical/dramatic organization, said the Short North facility will be home to 2Co's Cabaret, the troupe's new company.

Shows will feature acoustic music, piano and guitar mostly, and double-bills of one-act dramas and shorter plays. Plans call for showcasing new works by nationally-known writers. Special events are planned for Gallery Hops, and space has been allocated for the display of artwork.

Opening is set for early spring, after extensive renovation and construction of a stage and backstage area.

 

Poets Pouring

The Umbrella Poets of Columbus will read at the Jung Haus gallery space on December 4 at 7:30 pm. The group was co-founded by art historian and poet William Fabrycki, and poet-journalist Elizabeth Ann James. Mimi and Howard Chenfeld, Fred Andrle, Connie Everett, Karen Musulo, Frank Richardson, Russell Smith, and Steve Abbott form the Umbrella membership. Connie Willett Everett recently won two top prizes in the Mid-Ohio Writers contest. Each of these widely published poets has a strong connection to the visual arts, and each brings an original voice to the poetic arts. The reading is free; Eric George Weinberg's photo art will be on view, and everyone is invited to look and listen. The Umbrella Poets have warm patchwork voices. Let it snow!

 

Dis 'n' data

The Columbus Metropolitan Club is hosting its last membership reception of '99 at the Riley Hawk Gallery from 5:30 to 7:30 pm. Not only will the attendees get to view the brilliant glass art of Jon Kuhn, they will be able to enjoy the Short North decked out in holiday lights and all the festive window displays.

E. T., the sculpture, which was stolen from Extra-Terrestial, is still missing. Owner Ellis Terrell say the $500 reward for E. T.'s safe return still stands.

Diane and David Artz, well-known Short North residents, recently won an all-expenses-paid trip to the Grand Canyon, courtesy of Time-Warner.

I seems as if the Arena District will soon have the highest concentration of bars, restaurants, and clubs in the city. Latest entry is Anthony Ganakes' and Dorothy Stanley's Club 504, a state-of-the-art hi-tech dance club if there ever was one. It's located at 504 Park Street, just north of the North Market.

 

Happy New Year!

Coming soon! To the Theatre of Life! Changing the century designation of 19 to 20 in front of the appropriate year. Are you ready? One! Two! Three! Go! After January 1, don't you dare be caught witing 19 instead of 20. Of course, it will be the 21st century, because this is the 20th century. Confused? Wait! There's more! This January 1 does not represent the beginning of a new century. I repeat: Not! That will come January 1st next year. Here's how to demonstrate this simple fact to your doubting friends. Get them to hold both hands up in front of their faces, fists clenched. Then have them count the years of the first century AD, and for each one counted, put a finger up. Should come out to ten, if your pal has the full complement of pinkies. That's a millenium. OK. Now do it for the second century. That's the one we're saying fond adieu to. Comes out to 20, right? But we have to finish off this next year, the tenth one, to get a full count of 20.

Whatever, we want to take this opportunity to thank the many people who have helped make this publication possible. And, you, the readers, we want to thank for just being there.

 

Sam Says

Sam the Cat, our poetry editor, would like to thank the many talented people who have contributed their works to the pages of the Gazette over the past few years. He says, "Tell them that their poems have brightened my day." He also wants to remind the poets (and others) that all of the poems that have been published in the Gazette are on our Web site at www.shortnorth.com

So, if you haven't already, send in your poems. You'll also get ten bucks, in addition to the joy of being published. Send your poems to Sam the Cat, Poetry Editor, Short North Gazette, 404 Thurber Drive, Suite 9, Columbus, OH 43215.

 

Noisy Nocturne

I don't want to be a crusty old curmudgeon who's always complaining about something or other, but sometimes I just have to give vent to my gripes. Maybe I'm like William Wordsworth who wrote "The world is too much with us. . . "

I can't sleep with my bedroom window open anymore. It seems like there's a helicopter of some description - police, medical, or TV news - constantly passing overhead with its harsh, blatting Apocalypse Now racket. In between the choppers, there are the commercial planes, droning across the firmament. I know all of this is good for me, essential ingredients of the modern society that I live in. I know all this, so don't tell me.

There are also the infernal boom-boxes on wheels, hard-wired cars emanating a constant cacophony of outrageous lyrics and pounding bass notes. Sometimes I can hear them in the middle of the night, from somewhere far off, polluting the nighttime silence with their obscene noise. Henry would have retreated from this crap a lot farther away than Walden Pond.

There's loud music from neighbors, of course, especially if you live in an apartment community. Sometimes this is controllable, often not. Rudeness and indifference are common hallmarks of life today.

I also hate trucks parked with their motors running, spewing forth their foul fumes, destroying the fresh air all around them. I know, I know. It's hard to start big trucks up. They should make 'em better.

There are plenty of other irksome things that gripe me if I wanted to make a clean breast of it. Anymore, I hate getting on the freeways because of the

multiplying numbers of semis and other trucks, including dump trucks trying to make as many trips as they can in one day. Give me the greenways. You can have the freeways (an oxymoron). And as for that Buck Roger's version of the so-called Spring Street Interchange, you can stuff it! It will produce more bumper-to-bumper traffic, more traffic jams than ever before. If you don't believe me, check out the north outerbelt.

Are the machines taking over our lives? Reducing us to measly, wimpy, whimpering slaves? I think so. No wonder there's so much road rage. A lot of people are beginning to crack.

Egg Lady Leaves

I was saddened to hear of the death of Dorothy Gatterdam, the Egg Lady of the North Market. She passed away November 12 at St. Raphael's Home for the Aged in Marble Cliff. She was 95.

Dorothy started helping her parents on their family farm when she was a mere lass of five years old. At North Market, she sold eggs to generations of loyal customers, where her eggs were said to be so fresh they didn't know they'd left home.

Expanding Eccentricities

Recently I had the opportunity to drop in at Antiques & Eccentricities, 190 West Second Avenue, and what a pleasant surprise! Proud proprietors Richard Bauer and Jim Spradlin have expanded their shop so extensively that it calls to mind the Book Loft in German Village. And we're not just talking space here. There are amazing artifacts and tantalizing treasures in every room and on every wall.

New Name

The Wallich Gallery is the new name of what used to be called lj's. Same great pictures, same quality framing, same friendly staff. Which reminds me, talented associate Bob Corkwell's work will be featured there during November. Artist Tom Baillieul's limited edition prints titled Coast to Coast, which commemorate Columbus' role in com-mercial passenger aviation, are also on sale at the Gallery, and much more.

Personal Picks

Most influential person of the 20th century? Hmmmmm? After some consideration, here are my picks: Samuel Clemens, Clarence Darrow, Albert Schweitzer, Rachel Carson, Martin Luther King Jr., Anne Frank, Edward O. Wilson, Loren Eiseley, Roger Tory Peterson, Robert Frost, Carl Sandburg, Winston Churchill, Pablo Picasso, George Bernard Shaw, Margaret Sanger, Albert Camus, and Albert Einstein. uh, can I add Marilyn Monroe? And, don't forget, these are my picks, not yours!

Dis 'n' Data

Books: Finished Joyce's A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man. Still browsing through The Hemingway Reader. Reading lots of Thurber, of course.

Speaking of books, Clintonville is blessed with several great used book stores: Books on High is at 3510 N. High Street. Hoffman's Book Shop is at 211 Arcadia Avenue. Karen Wickliff's is at 2579 N. High Street.

Once again, Bill Cohen will head up a Sixties Coffeehouse in the basement of the King Avenue Methodist Church, 299 W. King Avenue. Call 263-3851 for more information.

Things I've discovered: I've learned that it makes no difference how hard you try to be friendly to some people, they're still assholes. But you must remember this: some assholes have a friend who is an asshole. So that makes a pair of assholes - and you must remember three of a kind beats two pairs.

Construction of Hampton Inn and Suites is coming right along, as is the Convention Center's parking garage across from North Market. Just to the east of the garage, the classy Carlisle Club, a new night spot, is up and dancing. Start your workweek with some super slammin' sounds under the direction of DJ James Brown Mondays and Tuesdays.

Congratulations to WOSU-FM as they celebrate a 50-year legacy of providing classical music to their lofty listeners.

If you like birds, trees, wildflowers, the stars, the clouds, and photography then you might like our Web site located at: www.netwalk.com/~vireo/boaf.html

Sam the Cat, our poetry editor, says: Send in those poems! Do it now. Don't be a scaredy-cat! Win your 15 minutes of fame - and 10 bucks too. Also a spot on the Gazette Web site. Stick 'em in an envelope addressed to Sam the Cat, The Short North Gazette, 404 Thurber Drive West, Suite 9, Columbus, OH 43215.

Dial-a-Meal

Too tired to cook? Not in the mood to eat out? Well, enjoy the best of two worlds, maybe three. Log on the internet at http://www.shortnorth.com &endash; click on "Dining and Wining," review the many restaurants and deli menus you'll find there, make your selections, phone your order in, pick it up in 20 minutes. This is enjoying the best of two possible worlds.

 

 (From the October 1999 issue)

Green Lawn Gabfest

For many years I have gone to beautiful Green Lawn Cemetery and Arboretum to look for birds. Many other people do the same thing, so on some days a visit there becomes a social event. But, for me, it often becomes something more. I communicate in my mind with some of those who are no longer living. Especially when I'm alone.

Cheerily, and in a conversational manner, I silently chat with James Thurber. Although I met him briefly on a couple of occasions when he was alive, now I am a closer friend, more of a confidant. I keep him up-to-date on a lot of pet peeves that we mutually share, including the growing commercialization of The Ohio State University, the Dr. Swango debacle, the continuing over-importance of football, and the latest joke going around town that the marching band needs 500 additional members so they can do a script Schottenstein.

Nearby I say hello to Emile Ambos, the eternal fisherman, and while walking around the pit I spot the white albino squirrel, a couple of chipmunks, plenty of gray squirrels, blue jays, crows, robins, chipping sparrows, chickadees, and a white-breasted nuthatch. Speaking of nuthatches, one time a young girl on one of my hikes said she enjoyed seeing the "nutmeg." The red foxes are gone, and I haven't yet seen the coyote that's said to have taken up residence in the cemetery.

I nod to Captain Eddy Rickenbacker, the World War I ace, say hello to Ed and Marian Thomas (Ed was one of my mentors when he was Curator of Natural History at the old Ohio State Museum at 15th and High.) And, as I usually do, I meander over to the remarkable life-size statuary of little George Blount. Georgie was born in 1867 and died on Valentine's Day, 1873 when he fell off a balcony in the lobby of a downtown hotel. Summer and winter he sits there, one leg tucked under him, his cap in his lap. All of this beautifully chiseled in stone. More often than not he's sporting a real-life cap that some good Samaritans keep him supplied with. Sometimes there will even be a scarf wrapped around his neck.

I stop by my mother's pleasant grave site, remove any tree liter that might have accumulated, replenish the bird feeder that hangs from a nearby tree, tell her that I love her, that the family is well and happy and I wish she were here.

 

Global Gallery

News of the possible demise of the Global Gallery with its wonderful assortment of arts and crafts from developing countries threw a start into more than one person in the Short North. Over its life-span of almost 10 years, nearly $900,000 of merchandise was sold but, that wasn't quite enough, according to Dave Wirick, Global Gallery board president. The good news now is that the store will stay open. All of this due to benefactors who stepped forward to save the struggling shop.

Volunteers and positive ideas are still needed. Call Wireck at 486-5775, or Peggy Johnson at 459-9186, or Ellen Kreider at 486-5775.

Menu Magic

Beginning October 2 the King Avenue Vegetarian Restaurant will have an entirely new format for dining. Featured will be exclusively organic lunches, dinners and Sunday brunch menus, according to Robert Metzger. Created by chef Magiale Wolmark, the new menus will feature boutique-style dining haute vegetarian cuisine with the finest fruits and vegetables. This is a delightful place to be. Try it!

Hocking Hike

Come join me on a nature walk in the beautiful Clear Creek Valley in Hocking County, Sunday, Oct. 3 at 9 am. We meet in the Metro Park's Starner Road parking lot. That's several miles from the Shell Convenience Station at the Intersection of Route 33 and the Clear Creek Road. We will enjoy the fall color, probably 30 or 40 different kinds of birds, the beauty of wild flowers, and a lot of good company. Everybody's welcome!

Dis 'n' Data

Good news about Chelsies' having another chance. The live music club supplies a lot of entertainment for their customers and provides many a local group with the milieu they need.

Work continues on renovating the building just north of the Third Avenue Community Church that will be home to Byzantium in the not-too-distant future.

I took out a subscription to George just to keep one deceased editor's dream alive.

Books: I'm trying to get through a second reading of Joyce's A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man. At Half-Price Books, I recently bought a copy of The Hemingway Reader and I'm having a good time revisiting some old literary haunts. Seems like I enjoy the tried-and-true more than the new.

Harry Johns is taking 15 hours at OSU during the fall quarter while holding down two part-time jobs: one as bartender at B. Hampton's, the other at the W. Fifth Avenue Cord's Camera store. He's majoring in photography and something on the business end of things. Way to go, Harry!

John Polivka says that the J & G Diner policy of being open weekdays for breakfast has gone over great. All kinds of good things are on the menu including waffles, omelets, hot cakes, cinnamon French toast, pork chops, and eggs fixed eggzactly right!

Spending a lot of money for extra-duty policemen just so a few guys can spew their hatred doesn't seem to me what our founding fathers had in mind when they talked about free speech. What's free about it!

Sam the Cat, our poetry editor, says: Send in those poems! Do it now! Win your 15 minutes of fame - and 10 bucks too. Stick 'em in an envelope addressed to Sam the Cat, The Short North Gazette, 404 Thurber Drive West, Suite 9, Columbus, OH 43215.

Dial-a-Meal

Too tired to cook? Not in the mood to eat out? Well, enjoy the best of two worlds, maybe three. Log on the internet at http://www.shortnorth.com &endash; click on "Dining and Wining," review the many restaurants and deli menus you'll find there, make your selections, phone your order in, pick it up in 20 minutes. This is enjoying the best of two possible worlds.

While sitting peacefully at one of my favorite bars recently, I was verbally dusted by a religious enthusiast demanding to know why I didn't believe as he did. During his tirade, he informed me that the world was just a bit over 2,000 years old. I believe that pretty effectively obliterates most of the Roman and Greek empires, not to speak of many other cultures earlier than that. To see that much civilization go down the tube so quickly was a sobering experience.

 


(From the September 1999 issue)

 

Age Agenda

I was reading about Ben Levinson recently. He's the gentleman from West Los Angeles, who still bops around at the age of 104, works out regularly at the gym, and does all kinds of neat stuff. I've already told you about my friend Eddy Farmer, who's 89 years young. He plays tennis most every day and, along with his wife, Jeannine, contributes beautiful camera shots of wildlife to the Gazette.

With all this in mind, I've worked up a new way to categorize peoples' ages. I want you to read this and then memorize it so you don't forget any part of it. This is the latest scoop. Ready? Get set! Go!

From the moment of birth to age one or so, an infant can be referred to as a member of the Diaper Wiper Set. Baby talk is the rule here along with high chairs, baby gates, strollers, car seats, and all the rest of the paraphernalia. It's all worth it though, because with rare exceptions these tiny folk are perfectly precious.

Next comes the period from one-plus to about four. These are members of the Cookie Crumb set, sometimes called Rug Rats. As a rule, these small folk maintain their cute ways and their personalities continue to develop along with their lung-power.

Age 5 is a nice category. Although still pre-school, those in this group are polishing up their communication skills and are becoming quite sophisticated. Five is a good time to be alive!

Ages 6 to 10 are basically your elementary school group, a little brash and noisy, nevertheless fascinating as they continue to mature. Call them Hush Puppies.

Eleven to 12-year-olds are pre-teens and are becoming quite knowledgeable as to the ways of the world. They are friendly, helpful, and all the other good scout stuff.

The teens are exactly that, teens. It's a long and sometimes difficult stretch with many changes taking place as they approach adulthood. If you're in this age group and smoke, stop!

Eighteen to 21 is college age, or sometimes military age, or sometimes just going-to-work-full-time-age. It's a wonderful and worthwhile time that flies by all too quickly.

Twenty-two to 30 is young adulthood and is one great adventure. The thirties are a continuation of youth, let's call it Youth, Part II.

The 40s are just on the cusp of true maturity, but still a transition period between youth and what lies beyond. Call 'em the Roarin' 40s. If you're still smoking, you're some kind of idiot.

The 50s might be called the tail end of youth, but maturity for sure. Call 'em the Nifty 50s.

From 60 to 75 is the beginning of middle age and for many is the prime of life. Call 'em the Sexy Sixties and the Sensational 70s.

From 76 or so to 90-something is middle age, a good time to brush up on reading and intellectual skills, continue a good exercise program, watch the diet, and have fun.

From 90-something to 110 is Late middle age, a retrospective and rewarding time which can be truly joyful. The secret of longevity is not to slow down too much. If you're in this group, continue all the healthy things you do, and that includes romance!

Anyone over 110 is on the threshold of getting old. Such fortunate people deserve our respect and admiration for having run the race all the way to its end!

And if you're still smoking, for heaven's sake quit now before it kills you!

 

Taylor Topples

 

Our heart goes out to the many residents and friends of Taylor Terrace, the public housing project in Italian Village, which is slated for demolition.

The 240 residents are to be assisted in moving to another CMHA facility or other sites, according to Dennis Guest, director of the Columbus Metropolitan Housing Authority. In addition to a high-rise and other housing units, the project is home to one of the city's most popular Senior centers.

The housing authority has stated that renovating Taylor Terrace would be almost as expensive as constructing a new building.

 

Chenoweth Charm

 

It seems as if Doral Chenoweth has been doing the Grumpy Gourmet column for the Columbus Dispatch for as long as I can remember. And, in this reader's opinion, Doral does an outstanding job with an almost impossible task. He's the first to admit that he's dissed plenty of restaurant owners and probably more than a few dining patrons. And that's to his credit! How else to write a critical review worth its salt if you don't spill the beans? And during his extraordinary career of restaurant hopping, Doral has put many a fine eatery on the map and kept it there. On the personal side, I've counted Doral as a good friend for many years. As a matter of fact, we were mutual friends of Emerson Burkhart, the noted Columbus artist. Bon Appétit, Doral!

Dis 'n' Data

James Turner was recently elected President of the Columbus Landmarks Foundation. The organization promotes preservation and rehabilitation of valuable historic structures and the design-quality of new structures and spaces.

John Polivka has announced that the J & G Diner is now open weekdays for breakfast. All kinds of good things are on the menu including waffles, omelets, hot cakes, cinnamon French toast, pork chops, and eggs fixed eggzactly right!

Sharon Weiss of Antiques & Art on Poplar was thrilled when nationally known auctioneer Chris Jussel stopped by her shop, and made a purchase! Jussel was in town with the Chubb's Antiques Road Show which aired on WOSU-TV last month.

The 18th Annual Open House at Long's Art Supply, on Sept. 15 sounds like a rewarding experience, and a chance to save some real money! Long's has the largest selection of art supplies in Central Ohio. See their ad.

If you live in Victorian Village and are interested in acquiring some tips on environmental living, please call

Mary Faley at 267-9982 and ask about the new Eco-Team program.

Kirk Pemberton might just make the world's best martini. Who can say otherwise? The big good-natured guy has tended bar at Strada World Cuisine since it opened. Stop in and say hello to him. He's also a good conversationalist.

Don't forget to do something special on Sept. 9th at nine minutes and nine seconds after nine o'clock. That's when all the nines will be getting together. Maybe you can do "a stitch in time, saves nine."

 

Dial-a-Meal

Too tired to cook? Not in the mood to eat out? Well, enjoy the best of two worlds, maybe three. Log on the internet at http://www.shortnorth.com &endash; click on "Dining and Wining," review the many restaurants and deli menus you'll find there, make your selections, phone your order in, pick it up in 20 minutes. This is enjoying the best of two possible worlds.

Goodale Park in the heart of the Short North


(From the August 1999 issue)

King Kar

Perhaps the saddest thing about the science fiction moonscape comprising the Spring Street Interchange currently under construction is that it consumed hundreds of acres of what could have been the most desirable land in Columbus.

This undeveloped land extended from Grandview Avenue on the west to near downtown on the east. Oh sure, most of it was totally neglected, choked with weeds, concealing old railroad right-of-ways and half-forgotten quarries. I used to visualize it being developed in an intelligent, urbane manner, a great arc following the curve of the Scioto River, a veritable Gold Coast. In my mind's eye, I saw luxurious condos, galleries and museums, small sophisticated shopping plazas and nifty apartments, all set amidst lagoons and beautifully-tended gardens in an attractive park-like setting. Incidentally, it could easily have been a great supplier of tax revenue for the city.

So the dream has died, the bubble burst like many before it in this city of so many lost opportunities. Not too different from the sad fate of most of downtown after the corporate buzzards finished devouring it, erecting their modular office buildings amidst a sea of parking lots. Gone are the old comfortable hotels, the lovely restaurants, the sociable bistros, the haberdasheries, the shops of all descriptions, and the crowds of people strolling along the sidewalks morning, noon, and night.

Gone, all gone, as we now contemplate the mushrooming of ever-more suburban shopping centers cannibalizing each other, while chewing up irreplaceable farmland, more miles of mushrooming concrete a la Los Angeles with attendant traffic congestion, increasing in ratio to the miles of so-called freeways, but more accurately called clogways.

The car is king. Bow down to the omnipotent King Kar! We are slaves!

Excellent Xers

In spite of my harsh words last month about some Generation Xers having attitudinal-adjustment problems, many are hardworking kids who deftly balance going to school, studying, and often working at part-time, or even full-time jobs. Throw in a modicum of social life or a bit of love life and you can see what a balancing act this can be. Yes, there are plenty of Generation Xers who deserve a lot of credit. Not all of them have attitude problems. Not by a long shot!

And, while I'm at it, three hearty boos for the scurvy bureaucratic education administrators who have their greedy hands out for six-figure salaries while many of these young people knock themselves silly trying to make ends meet.

To give you an idea of what I'm talking about, in 1950 the tuition at The Ohio State University was about $110.00 per quarter. Got that? Two fifties and a ten! Tuition today is $1,266.00 for 12 or more credit hours per quarter. That's a hell of an increase.

Did you notice that when I mentioned the state school in question, I put the sacred "The" in front of its name? Ain't that grand? Aren't I a good boy! And in case you're wondering, I'm not bitter, I went to OSU and, yes, I graduated from the School of Journalism.

Two Thomsons

David Thomson, our copy chief, is the brother of our publisher. He is one of those responsible for getting our wordage out in readable and articulate form. David is a graduate of the old University High School here in Columbus and has a degree in Philosophy from the University of Chicago. During his distinguished editorial career, he has been associated with the American Bar Association and the Mershon Center at The Ohio State University.

Betz Bird

I mentioned in the last column how Dave Betz grows lyrical when he talks about the musical mockingbird that inhabits the area around Fourth Avenue and Hamlet Street. "Sometimes he sings most of the night," Dave says admiringly. I went on to say how he and his neighbors have named the sleepless songster Attica after Attica Finch, the Gregory Peck character in To Kill a Mockingbird. Right? Wrong! I should have said Atticus Finch. Attica is a prison.

Speaking of birds, I was with Betz and Pat Schick recently when a front swirled across the Short North skies with a drenching thunderstorm close behind. Matter of fact, we were looking out the front door of Jim Hill's St. James Tavern when, lo and behold, a nighthawk zig-zagged across the sky, did his powerdive, followed by two of them executing a fly- by, so close we could see the white racing stripes on their wings.

Savory Solutions

Too tired to cook? Not in the mood to eat out? Well, enjoy the best of two worlds, maybe three. Log on the internet at http://www.shortnorth.com &endash; click on "Dining and Wining," review the many restaurants and deli menus you'll find there, make your selections, phone your order in, pick it up in 20 minutes. This is having the best of two possible worlds.

Dis 'n' Data

Georgia Morgan did not get back to Columbus for the Comfest weekend as we reported in the July issue. Guess the fishin' was too good down there in the Florida Keys.

Functional Footware

Do do with yourself some of these hot mid-summer evenings? Here's an idea. Get in the jalopy and cruise through the streets of Victorian Village, Italian Village, Harrison West, and any of the other villages and appendages around our area. Better yet, put on a pair of functional footware and take a soothing stroll along the attractive avenues.

Look for the many examples of unique architecture, the cupolas, towers, and skylights that adorn the outstanding homes of our area. Notice the lovely landscape and the colorful creative gardens of unforgettable flowers. Don't just pay attention to the big houses, because there are plenty of unique small homes deserving attention.

Chances are that after one of these little tours, you'll discover something new, something striking, something you never noticed before you set out. Oh, and by the way, very shortly Christine Hayes will be walking readers through an historical Tour of the Short North in the Gazette, a tour dedicated to her father, Ben Hayes, long-time columnist for The Columbus Citizen-Journal and The Columbus Citizen.

Sorry Sinner

The other day on a sudden devilish impulse, I tossed a coughdrop wrapper out the window of my car. Then I sped away. Several times recently, I have gone through the express lane at my local supermarket with eleven, twelve, thirteen items, when it plainly states "Ten items or less." I have to live with these things. It's terrible.

Recently I worked up a frothing anger when I read that OSU Athletic Director Andy Geiger was getting paid $250,000 big bucks a year. Was I jealous? Hardly.

I wouldn't know what to do with that kind of money. And who wants to spend half their life with some accountant trying to figure out all the expenses and deductions. Sounds boring to me.

When I go TV surfing with my magic stick, I rush by the poor pleading evangelists who are shouting their hearts out for Jesus - and do I care? Hardly. I figure they're making more money than Andy Geiger.

Another thing. I easily lose patience with the superficial preoccupations of Generation Xers and their sniveling, snotty attitudes. Especially when they get old enough to work and I am unfortunate enough to cross their paths.

Not too long ago some bureaucratic bozo asked me what were the demographics of Gazette readers. "Oh, humanoids," I felt like answering. "Well, mostly," I should have added, "although our poetry editor is a cat, and more than a few squirrels and a few rabbits take the paper." I laughed to myself.

I went through a yellow light in Uppah Arlington. Oh my, am I losing it? Driving along West Fifth Avenue and numerous other streets around here, I find myself going over the posted 25 mph speed limit. Wait 'til I tell you this! I have a bookmark on a sexually explicit web site. Oh Lord, Forgive me all these sins, and have a good day!

Sippin' Sam

Sam the Cat, our poetry editor, has a favorite way of drinking water. We leave a small stream of the cold stuff running from the bathtub faucet and Sam sticks his paw under it and laps away. And yes, Sam's a southpaw. Sometimes his whole head gets wet. It's a sight to see. When the water's off, he sits like a sphinx in the tub patiently waiting, or he'll fall asleep there, curled up against the cold clammy side.

Betz Bird

Dave Betz grows lyrical when he talks about the musical mockingbird that inhabits the area around Fourth Avenue and Hamlet Street. "Sometimes he sings most of the night," Dave says admiringly. He and his neighbors have named the sleepless songster Attica after Attica Finch, the Gregory Peck character in To Kill a Mockingbird.

Door Delivery

Each issue of the Gazette is now home-delivered to every residence between Goodale Boulevard on the south and 11th Avenue on the north; N. 4th Street on the east and the Olentangy River on the west. The only exceptions, some apartment communities that do not allow doorknob hangers. All of that readership supplements newsstand distribution throughout the Short North, Downtown, the OSU area, Grandview, Upper Arlington, and Clintonville.

Dis 'n' Data

Ohhh! The mouth-watering food at Rupert's, 800 N. High St. A big choice. Reasonably priced. Ready to take home.

Georgia Morgan was supposed to come back in Columbus to visit old friends and take in the Comfest, one of her favorite things. But, darn it, she didn't make it.
Sharon Weiss has changed the name of her lovely shop at 8 E. Poplar Street to Antiques and Art on Poplar. Stop in sometime and visit. She has some rare and beautiful things that you might just want to acquire or simply admire.

Seems as if Dan Muko has put away his motorized scooter for good. Anyone who has ever seen Dan flying down the street on this contraption might wonder that he's still alive.

April Brown is celebrating her second year as manager at the SN branch of Bank One. B. Hampton's no longer has their complimentary buffet on Tuesday nights. But they still have free chips and salsa, and great food every night that emanates from their kitchen - to eat there or to go.

The bright-colored new mural on the side of Clique's, 1151 N. High St., was produced by the Short Stop Teen Center and the Arts Impact Middle School. It's terrific!

Right at press time, we were awfully sorry to hear that Joy Nesson
had passed away. Joy was one of our favorite people and she was a great asset to the Short North. She was one brave lady, fighting cancer and deteriorating health for a long time now. Her unique little shop, Design 436, Inc., was located at 718 N. High Street and dealt in "jewelry to die for," paintings, sculpture, and picture framing.on't know what t


Sharrock Starts

P. Susan Sharrock was recently named Executive Director of the Short North Business Association. She was the former public relations manager of the now kaput Players Theatre and immediately before assuming her present position, a departmental administrator at OSU. The SNBA job has been unfilled since Bill Welsh vacated the position in late 1998. A warm welcome to the Short North, P.!

Taylor Tiff

More power to the residents of Taylor Terrace in their battle to sidetrack CMHA's plan to demolish their home. The senior housing and popular recreation center are located at 96 East Second Avenue. That's right at Summit Street. The center is considered the most widely used in the city. So what goes here? Read the letter in our Commentary Section on page 3 of this issue.

Ames Aims

For at least a year Short North pundits have been speculating Lori and Kevin Ames were going to add the Caravan location to their string of enterprises, which include Frezno's, Dagwoodz, and the Press Grill. "Definitely not," Kevin said recently. "We intend to concentrate on what we've got. Quality instead of quantity!" What he says is readily apparent. The food at all three locations is terrific.

Doo-Dah Delight!

Everybody loves the DooDah Parade! Like Comfest, it's unlike any spectacle you've ever witnessed, or are ever likely to. I suppose it's sort of like Comfest on wheels. Or on feet. Or whatever. DooDah is downright hilarious. It's satire. It's comic relief. It's poking fun at bombastic figures and pricking over-blown egos with pins. It's a laugh riot. Except for a very few places in the world, it's uniquely Columbus, more precisely Short North. The Less Than Grand Marshalls this year are John Corby and Michael O'Malley.

As usual, the parade will take place July 4th. That's a Sunday, Friends, so there's no excuse for your not being there. We're talking twelve o'clock. Noon. More or less. The parade route is the same-old, same-old: Out of the park, down Neil Ave to First Ave, over to High St, south to Poplar St, then back to the park. Back in the cage, you might say. Don't miss it! Come and wave your own flag!

Fest Fun

The last weekend in June, that's when it always happens, the unbelievable, the incomparable Comfest, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday: June 23, 24, and 25.

If you've never been to Comfest, it's just about impossible to describe. It's concerts and music. It's a festival. It's a carnival. It's booths and stalls with all kinds of exotic and quaint goings-on. It's a consortium for ideas, new and old. And, last but not least, it's a wonderful people-watching affair.

Parmater Project

Eric Parmater surely deserved the recent article by Steven Wright in The Columbus Dispatch. The story stressed Parmater's firm belief that there is a growing demand for urban homes - including apartments - in the downtown area and nearby satellite neighborhoods.

Parmater and his business partners have invested over $2 million dollars to renovate a row of three-story brick buildings that date back to the turn-of-the-century. The properties are located on the east side of N. High Street between 1st and 2nd Avenues.

Ten loft-style apartments featuring hardwood floors and exposed brick are being built on the top floors. Rents will range from $650 to $1,700 per month. The apartments are expected to be available for occupancy this month.

Dis 'n' Data

"The Star Wars memorabilia at Carl's Antiques is out of this world." We wrote those words before it was discovered some low-life Darth Vader heaved a rock through the front window of the little shop at 49 W. Fifth Avenue and scooped up some of the hard-to-find memorabilia. Not to worry. They didn't get too much. Just a frickin' smidgen of this and that. Not the good stuff. It's still there.

Eddy & Jeannine Farmer's fantastic wildlife photos are on display at the Grandview Heights Library throughout the month of June. Do yourself a favor and go take a look-see or two. They're awesome!

Hearty congratulations to Karen Boston and Greg Carr who tied the nuptial knot last month at Trinity Lutheran Church and afterwards had an unforgettable reception at Columbus Music Hall.

This past April and May will undoubtedly go down in the annuals as one of the bloomingest, floweriest springs in memory. It was glorious, and the Short North and surrounding neighbor-hoods enjoyed their full share of color and fragrance. Especially wonderful were the honeysuckle that bloomed so profusely just a few weeks ago. The fragrance was wonderful.


 (From the May 1999 Issue)

 Arch March

Looks like we will get at least two arches constructed over High Street before the year's out. Probably one at each end of the Short North. Gateway arches, no less. Others will follow. All of them illuminated. Shining out at night in a cheery welcome to resident and visitor alike.

There will be a total of sixteen giant arches, all of them designed by the firm E. G. & G. Construction costs will be shared between the Short North Improvement District and the city.

Somewhat similar arches lined North High Street from the late 1800s until 1909, according to Sandy Wood, president of the SNID. Interestingly enough, one of the old arches found a new home on Chillicothe's 2nd Street in front of the Majestic Theatre and is still there.

Construction on the project will probably commence this summer.

Larger Than Life

My good friends Eddy and Jeannine Farmer just returned from a safari in Africa, where they were photographing wildlife. I recently showed some of Eddy's wondrous photographs to a couple of gallery curators. Shot with zoom lenses, the Cyberchrome enlarge-ments seemed to emanate light.

There were close-ups of a baby lion, a young panda, a moose against a Rocky Mountain setting of misty mountains, an albatross mother with a young bird, and many others. Were the curators impressed? Of course not. They are so preoccupied with modernism that they rarely give reality a chance. At one gallery, a young intern glowed with delightful surprise as I displayed each picture.

What else can I say? Well, this spring's William Parker Little show at the Columbus Museum of Art was a step in the right direction. So is Image Ohio, the great show at Roy G. Biv Gallery this month. So, like children, we progress.

Rupert's Rewards

Rupert's, a gourmet food shop and deli, is now open at 800 N. High Street. Prepared foods are offered, along with condiments, sauces, and packaged specialties. Versatile chefs are Ellen Lackey and Rich Kozar.

Deli entrees change weekly. When we visited, there was a tasty lasagna made with four cheeses with a homemade roasted tomato sauce, a Vegan loaf, Grilled Yellowfin Tuna, and Raspberry Truffle Duck. There were also a great selection of side dishes: mashed Idahos with lots of cheese, Asian noodles, Broccoli Vinaigrette, zesty salads, and desserts to die for. According to owner Dave Smith, Rupert's will be open seven days a week, from 10 am to 9 pm daily (until 11 pm on Saturdays), and Sundays from 11 am to 7 pm. For additional information, call 294-8000, then get your buns over there!

Bonnie Baker

Perky Bonnie Walker who did a long-time stint at Frezno's as bookkeeper has put all that number-crunching behind her. Now, like a spring flower, Bonnie's emerged as a baker in Frezno's open-to-view kitchen, and she's great in her new role. It's just like show Biz, says Bonnie!

Dis 'n' Data

Columbus Jazz Orchestra is now located at 33 Warren Street. Construction on the Greater Columbus Convention Center's new multi-level parking garage is rolling right along. It's located right across Vine Street from the North Market.

J & G's has a new owner, affable John Polivka. The food is better than ever! Chris Newton is back at the Flatiron Bar & Diner as top chef. The Flatiron is now open for breakfast from 7:30 to 10:30 am. Manager Roger McClain said the move was made to accommodate guests at the nearby Red Roof Inn. R. J. Snapper's has a great selection of fresh snappy seafood from around the globe.

Three cheers for the main Columbus Metropolitan Library's policy of free parking for the first hour in their spacious parking garage. How unusual, how nice, how thoughtful, not to be gouged for every little thing every time we turn around.

Have ya' noticed? Juke box music is getting better? More like music than the sounds coming from an auto repair shop. But it sure took a long time for some people to discover that bellow is not mellow

Sharon Weiss of Antiques on Poplar is excited about newly acquired oils by Rick L. Akers. The artist is a native of Kingsport, Tennessee, grew up in Dayton, Ohio, attended Wright State University, and has been a native of Columbus since 1987. Look for a summer show of Akers' work at Antiques on Poplar. Sharon also has Big Head pictures by Craig Carlisle, who now resides in San Francisco.

Feline Felon?

Crime News: Seems as if Jasmine, the cat owned by Carole Schwartz, owner of the Viking Carryout, sashayed down the street to the Byzantium and ever so cleverly shoplifted a small catnip pillow! Problem is she was caught in the act by owner Joyce Griffiths. Where do they send delinquent cats now that Alcatraz is closed? Another thought occurs. Perhaps Jasmine would benefit from the organic pet food available at Heidi's Homemade, 1409 Grandview Ave. Such fare might make her less restive, happier with the world, without need for getting high on catnip. Aw, who cares? Jasmine, you do whatever you want to do!


(From the April1999 Issue)

Wonderland

Where North High Street escapes downtown Columbus - just past the Hyatt-Regency, the Convention Center, and the skyward stab of Nationwide Plaza - it encounters an uncommon area called the Short North.

For a dozen blocks or more, High Street is transformed, thrown back into time, if you will, to an earlier era. Here are the buildings from the turn of the century and beyond, faithfully restored, rescued from the blight of neglect and the swing of the wrecker's ball.

A score of galleries have found refuge here, and there are enough friendly taverns and fine restaurants to warm the heart of any traveler. On Gallery Hop Nights - the first Saturday of each month - throngs of people crowd the sidewalks, there are street musicians, jugglers, and theatrical groups performing. It's wonderful!

Appointed Advocates

Volunteers are needed to speak up for abused and neglected children. Franklin County Court-appointed Special Advo-cates train community volunteers in a 40-hour program. CASA volunteers average between five and ten hours a month on their cases. If you're interested, call Stephanie Brehm at 462-7450.

Libertys Liberated

It's open! Representing an investment of more than $3 million, Libertys is now up and running with chef Fred DeBiasio turning out some of the best cuisine in the city. Salads are bountiful, fresh and imaginative, and thanks to Chrissi Pisanelli, a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, there's a splendid selection of breads and pastries.

The classy restaurant is located in the old Dollar Federal Savings & Loan Building at the corner of Olentangy River Road and West Third Avenue. World-class in decor, a veritable Taj Mahal of magnificence, any dinner is bound to be a special occasion. Yet food prices are mystifyingly modest with lunches averaging $7 to $10 and dinners from $12 to $20.

An American menu is in place with steaks, seafood, and pastas augmented by a satisfying selection of Asian entrees. Dining rooms are on two levels. Three bars will be in service. A dining deck will open in warm weather.

Guests enter the restaurant from the back parking lot which can accommodate up to 400 carloads of distinguished diners.

El Niñe-o

There are going to be a lot of nines floating around this coming September 9th. It's the ninth month, you know, and this is 1999. How about at 9 o'clock in the morning that fateful day, and again in the evening? And at 9 minutes and 9 seconds after 9 o'clock, we'll be inundated in 9s. Could this affect the weather as El Niño did? Who knows? It might affect more than that. Be sure to wear your best clothes all day. It's called dressing to the nines. Go to a baseball game or watch one on the tube so you can cheer for your favorite nine. Or play nine holes of golf. If it's your 9th, or 99th birthday, you're in like Flynn. Or if you have more sophisticated tastes, play the Choral Symphony, Beethoven's Ninth. And may the nine muses bless you!

Davids' Development

Construction will soon be underway for a spanking new hotel at the corner of Spruce and High. The Hampton Inn & Suites will incorporate the architecture - and some of the actual brick from the building occupying part of the site at the present time. Developers David Patel and David Kozar of the NTK Hotel Group presided at the groundbreaking ceremony March 19.

Say What?

Prez Clinton and Al Gore were in a diner. They looked at the menu as a gorgeous waitress stood by their booth. "I'll have the cheeseburger and fries," said Al Gore. The prez looked up at the waitress and said, "I'd like a quickie."

The waitress blushed and said, "Mr. President, you're incorrigible! I love you, but you behave yourself. Now what do you want?" The prez looked confused and said, "I'll take the same thing as the vice-president."

As the waitress walked away, Al leaned across the table and whispered, "Bill, didn't they teach you in Arkansas how to pronounce 'quiche'?"

Home Delivery

Each issue of the Gazette is now home-delivered to every residence between Goodale Boulevard on the south and 11th Avenue on the north; N. 4th Street on the east and the Olentangy River on the west. The only exceptions, some apartment communities that do not allow doorknob hangers. All of that readership supplements newsstand distribution throughout the Short North, Downtown, the OSU area, Grandview, Upper Arlington, and Clintonville.

Dis 'n' Data

In honor of Poetry Month, Elizabeth Ann James, Connie Willett Everett, and Edward Lense will present a program at the Worthington Square Little Professor April 15 from 7:30 to 9:00 pm. You know what other occasion this day represents without being told, don't you?

A small, select investors group is quietly planning a comedy club, The Last Laff, complete with liquor license, in the mid-region of the Short North.

CATCO's presentation of The Fantastics is a fine way to celebrate their 40th anniversary. It is the longest running musical in the world, and the longest running show in the history of the American Theatre. The production runs through April 11. Call 461-4917 for ticket information.

The Jan Frey Gallery has moved from its German Village location to 20 E. Lincoln St. in the Short North. With an eye for contemporary design products, antiques, art, and heirlooms, Jan has gathered together a great collection for collectors of the rare and unusual.

Dawn Spurlock is the new Community Director at the swanky Tivoli Apartments on Thurber Drive West.

Spring Fever

The last two weeks of April will always be my favorite time of year. It's when anticipation and reality become one. I even love the turbulence of the weather, the conflict caused by onrushing cold fronts, and the softening of those bludgeon-like blows by the warm, moist air pushing up from the south.

Forsythia's bright yellowness cheers me. I yearn to see the emerging leaves, small and tender, and the beautiful budding trees: the plum, the crab apple, the redbud, the dogwood, each with its own delightful eye-catching color.

I take pleasure in the mellow, clean smell of the wind laden with the news of approaching rain. And on mild April nights, the soft dripping sound of rain falling seems somehow to have been created for a good night's sleep.

The King Avenue Coffeehouse recently received national recognition when an article by Coleen Dyer was published in the Vegetarian Times

Coleen said the avant garde restaurant is one of the friendliest, relaxed places a vegetarian can visit.

The Coffeehouse is located at 247 King Ave. and is open Tues. thru Thurs. from 11 am to 10 pm; Fri. and Sat. from 11 am to 11 pm, and on Sun. from 10 am to 3 pm for brunch, and from 5 pm to 10 pm for the Sunday bistro. Phone: 294-T CUP.

Readers of the May/June '97 issue might have been surprised to see that Jim Hill's St. James Tavern, 1057 N. Fourth St., has Hennessy on tap.
Of course they don't. But the question arises, why not? It would be cognac's version of draft beer. Any good Irishman could handle that. Which leads to the old joke about why God created whiskey. You don't think I'm dumb enough to tell you the punch line to that one, do you?

Perhaps a few of the more observant readers have noticed that my mug shot keeps changing. So? It might also appear that I am getting younger. So? There's no law that says I can't do this. Maybe it's really happening. The vitamin E and the grape juice maybe. Maybe I will revert all the way back to childhood. Who's to stop me? Get out of the way. It's a trip.

Remaining concerts in the Short North Sunday Jazz Series are: July 6: Women in Jazz with Tom Carroll featuring Michelle Carney, Kelly McClennon, Marie Walker, and Tia Roseboro, July 6: the Bob Allen Trio, July 27: the Stan Smith Group, August 3: The Patrol, August 10: Jazz to Go Big Band, and August 24: Vaughn Weister's Famous Jazz Orchestra.

Barley's executive chef, Timothy Morrison, has introduced a new summer menu which includes such treats as Chicken Tenders marinated in hand-crafted Stout, a Bucket O' Mussels, served with lemon and garlic beer butter, and a chef's salad of lightly roasted vegetables.

Dis 'n Data

Good luck and good fortune to Cleve Ricksecker, departing Short North Business Association secretary, and Gazette columnist. He did an outstanding job for our community.

For what it's worth, as of this moment, my Erick's Solitaire percentage of games won is 17.4%.

Every Tuesday evening Joe Boffo puts on a white chef's apron, takes over the kitchen at the Short North Tavern, and produces some of the best Italian pasta specialties this side of Roma.

Just about the most enjoyable toy for adults I've ever owned is a tornado in a bottle and can be bought at The Monkey's Uncle, 8 East Lincoln Street for under $5. I have entertained folks from 4-years-old to a 104, from southern Ohio to Point Pelee, Ontario, with this little magic bottle.

The 2nd annual School for Older Wiser Lifelong Scholars (OWLS) is scheduled at Westminster-Thurber Retirement Community during October. Classes include Asian Study, Spiritualiy, Art, Astronomy, the life and novels of Jane Austen, and Music Appreciation.

Welcome to Planet Pet, 988 N. High Street, 297-6717, a "far out store for cool cats and dogs," the brainchild of Kim Butters.

Cheers to Tivoli Apartments in Thurber Village for their excellent landscaping and beautiful flowers.

Frank Barnhart, former drama instructor for the Columbus Academy and founder of Columbus' Reality Theatre and Act Out Productions, will be offering a drama camp for children ages 6 to 10, July 28 thru August 1 at Columbus Recreation and Park's Thompson Recreation Center, 1189 Dennison Ave. For more information, call 645-3082.

Call Maggie Kozelek at 645-3343 for information on kids' soccer and multi-sports camps the weeks of July 7 and August 4. Image Optical was recently featured in 20/20, a national publication.

A Call for Poetry

Sam the cat, our poetry editor, would like me to remind you to send in your poems. Send them to: Sam the Cat, Poetry Editor, The Short North Gazette, 404 Thurber Drive West, Suite 9, Columbus, OH 43215. Enclose a SASE if you want your poem back. There's fame and fortune waiting - well, ten bucks worth of fortune.

That's all for now.

Tom Thomson