Saturday, September 29, 2007

insert comment here

Due to an absolutely overwhelming amount of spam comments on the blog, I switched to Haloscan. Griff uses this and so do a lot of the other local bloggers, and supposedly, it will prevent the spammers. Leaving me more time to write, since I'll be spending less time deleting their cheesy comments.

If you're looking for the many insightful, funny and interesting comments that have been left on this blog since it started several months ago, well, I'm sorry. They're gone.

On the plus side, with Haloscan you can trackback... And I know how you guys love trackbacks.

So, who will be the first to comment using the new system? Hmmm?

:) lisa


Do you believe in soulmates?

I used to. But I’m starting to realize, they might not exist. An outdated concept that only looks real in John Cusack movies. Something we were told from a young age to watch out for. To live for. Something that just isn’t real.

Recently, I got an email (in the middle of the night) from an ex-boyfriend- from high school! He’s now divorced. His sister, also a good friend from school, is in the process of a divorce. They both married their high school or post-high school sweethearts. And lately, it seems like everyone I come in contact with is divorced, in the middle of a divorce, or is unhappy with their choice and plans to divorce in the near future.

So, were all of these people wrong about their soulmates? Did they make the wrong choice in a life partner? Or did they find their soulmates, and due to circumstances beyond their control, lose them? Is that possible? Because it seems pretty cruel to be allowed, to have that privilege, of finding the right one, only to have to let them go.

And more importantly, how do you know when you’ve found your soulmate? What makes you say, My God… She’s the One. I’ve been waiting for Him for my whole life. How do you know?

I’ve met people and experienced intense connections with them. Thinking, this is amazing… There’s no one else like him in the whole world. And how lucky I am to have met him. Finally, someone who "gets" me. And because I believe everything happens for a reason, I think, we were meant to meet.

I felt happy, excited about what might happen. Only to be let down. Find out they’re fallible. Not strong. Not even particularly trustworthy, when it comes to entrusting them with my feelings. They weren’t the great men I thought them to be. Is this just poor judgment? Or did I really find a soulmate, but the timing was wrong? Does that happen? Because it seems really unfair.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not finding amazing, soulmate prospects under every stone I turn. It’s only happened a few times. And each time seems to cancel out the time before. Made me realize, what I had thought was a connection, wasn’t a connection, but more likely just caring deeply about another being. And so that’s where I always come back to the question: how do you know?

My sisters and sisters in law have told me in the past that “you just haven’t met the right person, Lisa. When you do, you’ll know.” But I thought I knew. So what does that mean? I’d like to think that I’m a good judge of character. In fact, I’m known for that. Understanding things about people. Seeing them for what they are. The Observer. So how could I have been so wrong about something that’s so important?

I do know some very dynamic, very happily married couples. Many of them are in my own family. They have a lot of ups and downs, but there’s no talk of divorce, unhappiness or infidelity. There’s very little talk about soulmates either, but that doesn’t seem to bother them.

But it seems harder and harder to believe in the institution of marriage. I talked about this with a close male friend yesterday and we both pondered that inevitable question: why do it at all? So many people seem to end up unhappy or divorced. It hardly seems worth the effort.

But then I look at my family, and I think I might understand it after all.

Northern Kentucky Day Trips: The Woolfest Arts and Crafts Festival

The 2007 Woolfest Arts and Crafts Festival weaves its way into Falmouth, Kentucky October 5th- October 7th.

The Woolfest art fair features crafts, art, music and food from dozens of vendors. Crafts include everything from birdhouses to baskets to candles to chainsaw carving. And a whole heck of a lot more- essentially, a great place to do some early Christmas shopping. Live music at the crafts festival is a mixed bag, featuring Kentucky crooners like Hills of Kentucky, Harkey's Hoedowners and the County Line Ramblers. None of the more than two dozen bands sounds familiar, but I'd be willing to bet you'll hear some good bluegrass at Woolfest this year.

And the food, while covering the standard craft festival fare bases (funnel cakes, elephant ears) has some promising stand-outs from local organizations and churches, including lamb, pork tenderloin, chicken and dumplings, ribeye sandwiches and doughnuts. Jeez. Is it just me? Or does that sound pretty good?

Park for 2007 Woolfest at Pendleton County High School on U.S. 27 or grab a shuttle bus at the Pendleton County Library on Main Street in downtown Falmouth, Kentucky. Shuttle buses run between the Pendleton County High and Pendleton County Public Library every 1/2 hour during the craft festival.

2007 Woolfest runs from 10 am to 10 pm on Friday the 5th and Saturday the 6th. 10-6 on Sunday.

Friday, September 28, 2007


I don’t have that filter between my brain and my mouth that censors everything that I say. My friends are no longer offended by this (for the most part) and in fact expect it and (I think / hope) respect this as part of me. “It’s just you, Lisa,” Jo often tells me. I’m the one people call when they need an honest opinion. Which I am glad to offer. Not gleeful. Just glad to help out.

Because I know, a lot of what people say just isn’t true. Or what they say is so bogged down by filters that it’s diluted past the point of purpose:

“Things will work out great!”

“Give him another chance. He probably won’t cheat on you again.”

“Sure, I think your boss likes you.”

What’s funny about not having filters is that often, people choose to think you are joking when you make an unfiltered comment. This happens to me a lot.

Let’s take Jeremy, the trader broker. Or broker trader. Who regaled us with story after story in the bar about his great works in Japan, or wherever, somewhere overseas where he made a lot of money. Really just a very well-traveled 26 year-old.

“I’m also a professional cuddler,” Jeremy whispered to me in an undertone. “You’re also pretty annoying,” I hissed back. “What? Oh, ha! I thought you were serious,” he laughed. Um, I was.

Or take Jeff, who was struggling to decide which girlfriend to keep. “They’re both pretty much idiots, aren’t they?” Pause. “Lisa! You kill me!” “I might kill you if you keep seeing either one of them.” “You’re so funny.” Am I?

I think I’m a kind person. If a friend makes a judgment error and then asks my opinion, I will probably say amazing, fabulous- you’re brilliant. Because the damage is done. Why pile on the hurt?

Usually, I only strike out with my friends when I misinterpret something. Like telling a friend thank God you changed your website photos because the old ones were “lame.” “There still out there too,” he said thoughtfully. Oops.

Filters. Sometimes I wish I had one. Mostly, I’m glad that I don’t.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

cycle of submission

We are taught to be subservient.

From a young age, you were told to obey. By your parents. Teachers. Adults of any sort.

Sit up straight. Wash your hands. Raise your hand. Answer me.

As adults, we learn about an even more powerful form of submission. Survival. Working. Paying the bills. Being deferential to a client. Passive. Passing for something we are not just to make a buck. It's brutal, really. But unless you want to starve, you will work. You will obey.

My friend Jay hates the subservience. He often calls and talk about the noises he hears while we are on the phone. The noises that indicate that our calls are being monitored. The noises that force us to censor our conversations. I've tried to hear the noises. I never could. He tried to educate me. Explain the conspiracies. Of which there are many, according to him. Everything from why he can't hold a job to why we are at war. The government is responsible for more than I realized.

And we've found even more ways to be meek when we grow up. Obeying a spouse. Subjugating yourself to the needs of a loved one. You think that when you're an adult that you'll conquer the submission. Become assertive. But more often, you find yourself compromising. Just for now. But when does "now" give way to a life filled with regret?

Your family influences you and makes you obedient, too. So do your friends. If you stop compromising, you might lose everything. Or so we've been taught. We accept that we are powerless to change our lives. Without ever questioning the loss of power, or working for change. Asserting ourselves.

When does the cycle of submission stop? I'd like to think that I can reverse the cycle. I think for myself. I act on my own selfish needs. I follow my own schedule and live and love as it pleases me. I know I won't regret my choices. I don't believe in regrets. Because I don't have to. There's nothing to regret. The cycle stops with me.

And yet. And yet. Am I too docile? I know I let people railroad me. A people-pleaser. A push-over. Handing over money when I don't want to spend. Giving and not receiving. Saying yes when I want to say no. Going down, when I'd rather stay up.

The number one word I hear people use to describe me is "sweet." But am I truly a kind-hearted person? Or am I just obeying the rules?

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Black-n-Bluegrass Rollergirls Rock and Fall Carnival

Those rock 'em, sock 'em Black-n-Bluegrass Rollergirls got a mention in the Enquirer today.

The Northern Kentucky roller derby team is also having a fundraiser, the Rock and Fall Carnival, to raise money for the team and The Women's Crisis Center on Sunday, September 30th. The event features carnival games, prizes, a raffle and the really fun-sounding "Throw a water balloon at a Rollergirl" game, too. Stop by from 2pm-6pm at Independence Skateway (1637 Independence Rd) and take them up on their offer to skate with a rollergirl. Sounds like a lot of fun, especially for little roller derby girls in the making.

The Black-n-Bluegrass Rollergirls will be collecting canned goods for The Women's Crisis Center, and every canned good you bring nets you a free game ticket. $4 admission to the rock and fall carnival, + $1.50 if you need skates, and game tickets are $1 if you forget your canned goods.

Northern Kentucky Farmer's Markets

There are some very good reasons to support the farmer's markets in Northern Kentucky. For one thing, you'll finally get to taste juicy peaches bursting with flavor, Concord grapes that sing like a good pinot noir and green onions that are three times the size of what you can buy at the grocery store. And, you'll be supporting local farmers in Northern Kentucky.

There are 84,000 farms in Kentucky- we're fourth behind Texas, Misery and Iowa. Kentucky farm exports bring over $1 billion into Kentucky communities every year. The top farm commodities in Kentucky are horses (natch), broilers, cattle, tobacco, soybeans and corn.

And the relaxed camaraderie, joking and gossiping with the folks selling their goods and eyeing the cuties shopping for the week (err, maybe that's just me), makes visiting a farmer's market in Northern Kentucky a worthwhile trip.

Most of the farmer's markets close for the season in the next month or so. Visit a farmer's market in Northern Kentucky while you still have a chance:

The Boone County Farmer's Market is open daily from 9-6. The website gives great detail about what fruits and vegetables are available at what time of year. Right now, they're telling me that they think they'll be open through Christmas, to sell trees. If I get an updated closing date, or a change in hours, I'll update this post. Located at 6028 Camp Ernst Rd. Burlington. You'll see it from Burlington Pike, so be watching for the white tents.

The Campbell County Farmers Market has three locations:

Alexandria Southern Lanes Sports Center Parking Lot, Fridays, 3:00 - 6:00 p.m. through October 26

Highland Heights Senior Citizens Activity Center Parking Lot, Tuesdays, 3:00 - 6:00 p.m., through October 30

Newport 709 Monmouth Street, Saturdays, 9:00 a.m.- 12:00 p.m. through October 27

The Northern Kentucky Regional Farmer's Tailgate Market is open on Saturdays from 8:30 A.M. to 2:00 P.M. and Tuesdays from 3:00 - 6:00 P.M. through October. Located at the Sixth Street median at Sixth and Main Streets behind the Goose Girl Fountain in Covington's MainStrasse Village.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

falling face forward into fall

I’ve been a little down recently, as many of you kind people have noticed. I forget about who reads this thing until I bump into a neighbor who says, you’ve been having a hard time lately, Lisa. Huh? Oh, yes. You read the blog. Yeah, it’s been kind of a crummy summer.

Between my mom going through emergency surgery (twice), the death of a family friend (suicide), unfortunate health issues and some unexpected fall outs with a couple of dear friends, I'm ready to say so long, summer. I'll gratefully welcome you back next year but for now, I need a break.

Unfortunately, as we all know, once you admit to yourself that you’re unhappy or dissatisfied, it doesn’t go away. You can push it back for a few weeks- even a few months- and then all of a sudden, bam! It’s going to come back. And exponentially worse than ever before.

So today, I finally did what I should have done, weeks ago. I called my mom and told her everything. Well, almost everything. I don’t want to send her back to the hospital. Even though we talk all the time, we didn’t really talk until today. I’d been thinking a lot about her, and I’ve been in a truth-telling frame of mind for a week or so… it was time to go straight to the source, the real deal.

We talked for a while and she told me about a number of different odds and ends happening in my family that made me feel a little better about my situation. I guess the point was that a lot of other people have it worse than me. I know that. But it helps when my mom says it to me.

Also, she told me not to feel guilty about the delay in my move west. As long as I can make it out there by next year, I’m still in pretty good shape, apparently. That was a huge relief. There’s something just really satisfying about crying on the phone when the other person loves you unconditionally. You know, you just know, that there’s a bit of light peeping around the end of the tunnel. It helped. A lot.

And work-wise, things couldn’t be better. For everything else, we'll just have to see. But so far, I'm feeling good about fall; hayrides, football, haunted houses and pumpkin patches- it's always been my favorite time of year. I welcome today, the first day of fall, with open arms- excited about new beginnings, ready to leave old hurts behind. It feels good.

Day / Weekend Trips from Northern Kentucky: Shows to Check Out this Fall

I just turned down an offer to see Dracula at the Playhouse. I love Dracula. But there’s only so many times I can see it, My Fair Lady or A Christmas Carol. Turning down the show made me wonder what else is playing in theaters this fall. I usually write about day trips, but some of the best shows to see might require a little more travel time.

Day and Weekend Trips from Northern Kentucky: Theater worth a Road Trip:

The Crucible at Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theater Company is getting national attention and might be the best excuse I can come up with for a weekend visiting friends and shopping in the windy city. Not that I ever need much of an excuse to go to Chicago. Does anyone? This is my personal pick for the show to see this year. Get moving while tickets are still available. The Crucible runs through November 11th.

Dirty Rotten Scoundrels was a wonderful movie starring Steve Martin and Michael Caine; the theater version runs at Dayton, Ohio’s Victoria Theatre from September 25th through the 30th.

Cleveland’s Playhouse Square Center is re-running 1964 the Tribute, a stylish salute to the Beatles. Nectar for fans. September 28th.

The Lexington Opera House features the intense courtroom drama Twelve Angry Men October 5th through the 7th.

The state theater of Kentucky, the Actors Theater of Louisville, does Spunk, three tales by the lovely Zora Neale Hurston, promising blues, jazzy dancing and high style- exactly what you’d expect during an evening out in this town. November 13th through December 15th.

The amazing, engaging and brilliant David Sedaris will be at the Palace Theater at CAPA Columbus on October 12th.

Feel free to add a fall show to the list. I try to keep day/weekender blog posts to less than a 5 hour drive from Northern Kentucky, so that leaves a lot of room for road trip ideas!

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Covington Community Leader Awards Call for Nominations

Nominations for the Covington Community Leader award are due September 30, 2007.

The annual Covington Community Leader Award recognizes Covington residents who have made significant contributions to their neighborhood or school, highlighting their accomplishments and inspiring others to become involved in Covington.

Past winners of the Community Leader Award have exhibited some or all of the following characteristics:

- Demonstrates a strong commitment to Covington
- Has a positive vision for the community/school
- Successful in accomplishing projects and responsibilities
- Clearly shows concern for all members of the community/school
- Demonstrates the ability and initiative to bring people together to facilitate positive change
- Provides creativity in thinking and planning (new ideas, new solutions)
- Maintains a positive attitude

Anyone can nominate someone for a Covington Community Leader Award - please email the Economic Development & Community Relations Department for the nomination form.

The awards will be presented at the Center for Great Neighborhoods of Covington’s Annual Meeting in November 2007.

Friday, September 21, 2007

follow-up: the angry blogger

I wrote the angry blogger earlier this summer. Talking about how it’s wrong to write mean things about other people and then print them in a blog.

And then what did I do? I posted a couple of pissed-off blogs.

True, some hurtful, hurtful things have been said and written about me lately. Pointed, mean things about how I’m not a good person. Mean enough to make me want to say something back, and I did.

But, it was wrong. As my mom would say, “you weren’t raised that way, Lisa.” So I deleted them. The people in question don’t read this blog so it’s a small concession- they didn’t know about the posts anyway. But I know I did the right thing. I’ve always said I wouldn’t delete any post just because someone doesn’t like it. But in the end, I was the one who didn’t like the posts- and I didn’t like myself very much for writing them.

It really hurt me to hear and read negative things about myself. But it didn’t make me feel any better to put something out in the public domain about those other people. I don’t need to print snippy things about someone else in order to feel good about my life. I have too much other stuff to write about here. I’m not going to continue to try to respond to a war of words; a war I never wanted to get into, a war that has gotten way out of hand. It’s silly, really.

I’ll continue to make mistakes during my journey. But hopefully, I won’t make this mistake again.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

tales from the rib

Just some random conversations that made me laugh:

I am on the phone with my dad, talking about the latest suspense novel in a series that we both read.

"Dad, did you read it yet?"

"Yes, it was great!"

"Can you believe, after all this time, that the serial killer was his best friend, the FBI agent?"

"Oh… I guess I haven't read that one yet."

Jo calls me after work to talk about where to meet for a happy hour.

Jo: "What a day! I left my cell phone at home by accident. And I just realized I'm out of gas so I had to stop."

Me, utterly confused: "How can you be calling me if you left your cell phone at home?"

Jo: "Payphones, Lisa. They still have them."

It never occurred to me.


Jody, at the bar:

"My life is so overwhelmed with work and family that even going out with you is a highlight."


My dad, talking about our travel plans:

"When I called the resort in Banff, the front desk told me I should make restaurant reservations now, because they're booked for weeks in advance. I only made the reservation for two, though, because I didn't think you'd be hungry."


I could use a laugh today. Feel free to post a funny of your own.

Music in the Woods: Bluegrass in the Hood

The 7th Annual Music in the Woods happens Saturday, September 29th from 6 p.m. till 8:30 p.m. in the 2200 block of Greenup Street in Covington's Wallace Woods neighborhood.

Stop by and unwind with the music of the Northern Kentucky Bluegrass Band. Parking available in Wallace Woods or at the Covington Housing Authority lot at Madison and Sterrett. Some snacks and beverages will be available for sale and lawn chairs are recommended. The proceeds of Music in the Woods benefit local beautification efforts and the Covington Wallace Woods Neighborhood Association Scholarship fund. $5 for adults and kids are free.

The Commonwealth of Kentucky and Appalachia have a rich, rich tradition of bluegrass music. If you haven't given this music a chance yet, there's never been a better time. Attend a concert- they're usually held in small venues, bars or school auditoriums locally. You'll often find a world famous bluegrass star walking around talking to people and selling CDs before the show. You won't find that kind of down-home friendliness at a Creed concert! Or, visit the International Bluegrass Music Museum in Owensboro for exhibits and events that celebrate the history of bluegrass music in Kentucky.

And let us know if you go!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

chemical peel

I’m often disappointed by other people. Even now, when I thought I was over that. I’m still surprised by how much pretense some people have, and how often they lie. To themselves, and to everyone else around them. Pretending to be something that they aren’t.

Living your life honestly. Without any make-believe. That kind of upfrontery is hard to find.

In fact, outside of my core group of friends and family, it seems almost nonexistent.

I know that I give other people too much power. And I know that I need to stop being so trusting. But it’s hard to give up a life-long habit. I’ve tried, really hard, to stop being so gullible. To resume old relationships in a way that’s a little wiser, a little smarter. To enter into new relationships with a wary chip on my shoulder. Knowing that I should know better. But people will wear you down.

I’m looking for a procedure. Like a chemical peel. Stripping down to what matters. I just want to peel back that first layer of skin. Get to what’s underneath for once.

But lately, what worries me is the number of people in my life who have gotten under my skin.

Can I have them surgically removed?

Is there a process, like a chemical peel, that will take away unsightly friends and burn off ugly old lovers?

A procedure that eliminates all of the old scars left behind by failed relationships?

Removes the fine lines left from friends that I no longer speak with?

The basic cell structure. Naked. Stripped. Without pretense. Without defense.

Does it exist? And how much does it cost?

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

September is National Library Card Sign-up Month

I love the library. When I was growing up, going to the library was considered a special treat. I'd sit in the young adults' section for hours, deeply enthralled by graphic novels (Tintin), secretly reading Judy Blume and glued to horror books about Wendigos. It remains a staple for the voracious readers in my family and a regular stop to read the latest by our favorite authors.

September is National Library Card Sign-up Month. The Kenton County Public Library has many ongoing programs, often features visiting authors and has a comprehensive website to boot. Not to mention a darn fine selection of books, films and CDs.

In addition to the many benefits of being a cardholder, now you can use your Kenton County Library card for a number of discounts at Northern Kentucky merchants and restaurants, too.

Monday, September 17, 2007

A Weekend in Mainstrasse: Coffee, Red Dresses and Ballantine's

So Saturday was interesting. We went to Covington's Mainstrasse, and started out by watching Jordana sing at the Bean Haus. I had an iced soy latte and it was yummy... Upon further discussion with the owner and the folks working that evening, I discovered:

1. The Covington Bean Haus has been open almost one year (November).
2. They have a special cold-press coffee developed by a Cornell University student that eliminates the need for a cold shot in an iced latte; e.g., it's stronger. The cold-press coffee is also low on acids, so even the faint of stomach can drink coffee without, um, issues.
3. The Bean Haus has a conference room upstairs that anyone can use, free of charge. Just call ahead to reserve it and buy your refreshments there- that's all they ask. Located at 640 Main Street in Covington.

Jo sounded great as usual, but by the end we were all peeping outside to try to figure out what all the shouting was about further down 6th street. Surprise, surprise, it wasn't frat boys fighting, but the notorious Hash House Harriers, the "drinkers with a running problem," celebrating in the outdoor area of Strass Haus. In red dresses, no less. I snapped a photo but you can find a better shot on their website. The site also provides a complex set of rules for running with the group, but if you have the stamina, it looks like fun.

Since outdoors at Strass Haus wasn't an option (plus it was semi-chilly), we crossed over to the Village Pub. The Pub had $2 Ballantine's, but I could only drink two before I switched to Anchor Steam. I remembered Ballantine's as a good beer, but it's a little too sweet these days. Oh, and G. Burton was singing, and did some nice originals. I was pleasantly surprised. Plus, he has good taste in glasses- and in hats. Fall is definitely looking up.

Jordana plays at the down under (126 Park Place, Covington) this Saturday.

Tall Stacks Photos

Kevin LeMaster has some fab photos of Tall Stacks posted at Building Cincinnati. Finally!

things with sharp edges

My friend Lala has been experimenting with online dating. Something I’ve never done, but I have no problem with. Actually, I know of four separate couples who met online and got married. One of them is a family member, one a best friend, one is a client and one used to be my waxer. Sidenote: My waxer and her fella relocated to Oregon (!), and she can’t find work there. Because apparently, women in Oregon are not into hair removal. Ha.

Anyway, the main reason I’ve avoided online dating is because I don’t really know what I want. And I hate to drag a bunch of other people into “all that.” But generally speaking, I think its fine.

We were out the other night and Lala was relating some funny-ass (and not so funny) online dating stories to your faithful blogger, and I’ll get to some of them eventually, in other blog posts. But for now…

“This is what you should be writing about, Lisa.” A phrase that I hear often and always makes me sit up and take notice. “What about the men who show endless interest, email me constantly and then when I email back, or consent to go out with them, I never hear from them again! What’s that about?”

What’s that about, indeed?

First off, Lala is pretty and charming. Talented, too. So none of this “she’s a hardship case” nonsense. It really is a puzzler. We tried to get to the bottom of the mystery, asking helpful questions like “Did you spill anything on him? Pick your nose? Talk about hot guys with BMWs?” No, no and no. Nothing untoward happened on any of the dates, and the emails were just responding back to the sender in a playful manner.

Men that disappear are a phenomenon that occurs outside of online dating- it happens all the time in any form of the mating ritual. An anomaly from what we’re used to. But it does happen. In fact, it recently happened to me.

I met someone, a special person, and we talked several times a day for months. He lives out of town so this was all over email. Definitely, he has some baggage. Definitely, he’s a red flag. Brilliant, funny and very conflicted- what’s not to like?

One day it occurred to me that I hadn’t heard from him in a while. I didn’t think much about it at first. We’re both self employed and he especially has a lot of responsibilities. But, after a while, I started to wonder. Had I done something wrong? Did I tell one of my off-color jokes and it missed the mark? Did my penchant for eating meals over the sink or letting the laundry pile up for days somehow make itself known online? I don’t know. So finally, I asked. A tentative email that hinted at my confusion- and my sadness.

I’m just busy, he responded. You didn’t do anything wrong. Whew. Thank goodness. Everything would have been fine except, except… I never really heard from him again after that. I would like to think; since I asked him straight out, that I got an honest response. I’d like to think that what he said was true, but actions speak louder than words.

What I told Lala, and this is a hard thing to hear (she didn’t like it at all), is that maybe, just maybe, after all the over-analyzing and presupposing maybe it just comes to this: we are just not as adorable as we think we are. These men are just not that into us.

That’s the one thing that none of us wants to admit, right? We’ll accept busy schedules, hurricanes, medical emergencies and car accidents as a reason not to call (or email). But facing up to the fact that someone just doesn’t really care about you is really hard to accept. It hurts. A lot.

When you lose a friend or a potential love interest, you have a couple of choices. You can keep trying to help (assuming something is wrong), trying to apologize (assuming all of the blame), or, you can move on. That’s what I’m doing.

I’m moving as quietly out of his life as I entered, never to return. I think it’s for the best. Even though it’s hard. Incomprehensible, really. But I think a little hurting now is better than prolonging the pain, making myself miserable, and probably just annoying him further. It’s for the best.

At least, that’s what I keep telling myself.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Northern Kentucky Campgrounds

The next six weeks may be the last opportunity to go camping this year... Depending upon how hearty a camper you really are. A reader emailed me asking about campgrounds, so I thought I'd throw the website out here, too. You can search for campgrounds in Northern Kentucky at the department of tourism website. I haven’t camped at any of them; my camping trips in years past took me further south, to the Gorge and Natural Bridge areas… Natural Bridge state park is charming, tidy and with a babbling brook that runs along the campsites. And you’re extremely close to the gorge for hiking.

Big Bone Lick is supposed to be nice. Plus, then you get to say “Big Bone Lick.” Also the name of a great song by Bucket, by the way.
Let us know if you've camped locally, and if you'd recommend the park to others.

Friday, September 14, 2007

This Weekend: Jordana, Benefit, Bash

Ah, finally, the weather drops down into something resembling a beautiful Midwestern fall. Warm days and crisp evenings. Burrowing under an old blanket in a cold room. Too mature to jump into leaf piles, but scuffing through them a bit when no one's watching. So what to do to make the most of this beautiful weather? Lots.

Things to Do in Northern Kentucky this Weekend:

The lovely, melodic Jordana plays at the Bean Haus at 7 p.m. Saturday. 640 Main Street, Covington. Get juiced up on locally brewed coffee and then hit the town- you'll have no problem making last call! No cover.

The Whole House Michael W. Bany Memorial Scholarship Benefit starts 7 p.m. Saturday at Southgate House. Featuring In-Rage, HQAX, Shamvoodoo, APG, Out By Sunday, Earl Grey, Margin of Error and 8Kount $7. Southgate is located at 24 E 3rd St. Newport.

The So Long Summer Rib Cook-Off and Blues Bash goes through Sunday at Turfway Park. Post time is 1:10 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Music and ribs go well into the evening both days!

And of course, Mary Ellen Tanner and co. will be bringing down the house on Sunday at Chez Nora in Covington's Mainstrasse (corner of 6th and Main).

That should be enough to get you started. Have a great weekend!

Call to Artists: Covington's Art Off Pike

Covington is still looking for artists for Art Off Pike on October 13th. The juried show takes place at 7th and Pike Street will run from 11-7.

The Hyde Park art show (one of the best in the region for you newcomers) is October 7th.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

a sobering thought

In high school, we had a favorite saying: "A drunk man's words are a sober man's thoughts."

Time and time again, this has proven true. However. Most drunk men- and women- don't act on their drunken expressions of desire. Their secret wants and needs. If they did, the entire social structure of the world would change. Freed from pretension, we'd all be a lot happier. Of course, a lot more people would probably be in the hospitals on Sundays. And in the free clinic on Mondays. A lifetime of self denial, frustration and repressed desire torn down with a few shots, a couple of beers and a mission.

In high school, I knew people who did exactly what they said they would do when they were drinking. I should know; I was one of them. Taking drunken dares and acting out in an attempt to slough off a long week at school. Things that I said I would do when I was drinking that I actually did:

*Rolled down an enormous hill after a huge keg party at an abandoned house. I rolled right into a tree, injuring my ankle.

*Removed a twist-off cap from a beer bottle with my teeth. I found out later… it wasn't a twist-off. I still have a tiny chip on my tooth.

*Went skinny-dipping in a fountain in the middle of town. The guards came out. With the guard dogs. Resulting in a high-speed drive home. Sans clothing.

The only really unique thing about these three drunken feats is that they all happened in the same night.

Drinking can give you courage to do things you'd never have the nerve to do sober; it can also get you into a lot of trouble. Embarrass you and your family. Be harmful to other people.

Some warning signs that you might be giving in to your sober thoughts when you are drinking: If you are doing late-night drive-bys, making phone calls at midnight (and then hanging up, arghh) and repeatedly sending random text messages and emails, then you have some unresolved issues. To say the least.

And if you don't remember why you did it... Or remember doing it at all, then you probably have some other problems that also need to be addressed.

Some advice: Clean up after yourself; and face what needs to be faced in the sober light of morning. And above all, quit calling me and hanging up.

This isn't high school, after all.

Monday, September 3, 2007

Listening In On Kentucky History

Historian Lynn Renau will be interviewed on Louisville's WFPL 89.3 FM Tuesday, September 4th from 11 a.m. to noon.

WFPL's State of Affairs radio show will be discussing Renau's new book, So Close to Home: The Legacy of Brownsboro Road. The book talks about the history of Brownsboro Road and the historic Locust Grove area of Louisville.

Check it out online. I am going to try to remember to turn on the radio show, but I'll still be on autopilot at 11, so no promises.

And have a wonderful four-day work week!

Saturday, September 1, 2007

After the Fireworks: Post-Riverfest Survival Tips

Monday morning dawned over a city that's been transformed. Riverfest detritus from half a million people lines both sides of the river and trash from millions of other fireworks party participants dot parks and hillside homes all over Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky. And in even more of a transformation, there will be more tired and hungover people in Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky today than on any other day of the year.

I often feel let down after a major event is over. This year is especially bittersweet since I am saving up for a big move. Though I could easily see myself making an annual journey to visit friends over Labor Day weekend. That seems right.

In a tired and worn-out city, a lot of people will just be hanging out at home, recovering. That opens the door to do any number of things with less waiting and more space to move around. So, what to do after the Fireworks? Some post-Riverfest survival tips:

1. Go see a movie. Jesse James is looking good.

2. Go out to dinner. Call first to make sure the restaurant is open.

3. My favorite post-Riverfest tradition is going to the Cradle Stakes at the River Downs racetrack. The Cradle Stakes have to be the biggest race of the year at River Downs, and there's always plenty of good people-watching at the racetrack. The stands are shaded, so no worries if the sun feels a little too bright on our bleary Monday afternoon. Plus, River Downs makes a fairly decent spicy bloody mary.

Your ideas for post-Riverfest survival?

Best Places to Watch the Riverfest Fireworks in Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky

OK, I meant to get this posted a few days ago but I got sidetracked. Here's a rundown of some of the best places to watch the Riverfest fireworks in Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky:

  1. Devou Park in Covington has spectacular views of the city any time, and awesome views of the fireworks;

  2. Bellevue Park in Clifton has terrific views- a great place to watch the fireworks;

  3. Alms Park in Tusculum/Hyde Park area is a pretty park, you won't see all of the fireworks (e.g., the waterfalls), but then again, you won't see all of them unless you are right smack on the river;

  4. I've seen the fireworks from that area just east of downtown Cincinnati on the riverbank, before California. Actually, we knew someone who lived there and had an annual Riverfest fireworks party and even after he moved the new people let us come back to watch;

  5. Eden Park offers awesome views of Riverfest but closes the entrance early, so you have to get up there in the afternoon.

I could go on and on with this list... In the city of seven hills, there's dozens of great places to watch the Riverfest fireworks. Any park in the city or on the Northern Kentucky side that has views of the Ohio river and bridges should work fine.

Where will I be? They close the Covington Riverside district to cars so I'll be party-hopping, people watching and generally wandering the streets of Riverside and Newport, chatting up members of the National Guard.

Remember, most streets and bridges around downtown close at 5 pm on the day of the fireworks.

I've had a couple of emails from out of towners looking for ideas on where to go, so please, add your favorite places to watch the Riverfest fireworks.