Archive for May, 2006


I just spoke to the board of Neighborhood Housing Services Cleveland [whoa 1994 site design!] about my trip to Nashville. They footed the bill so it was only right that I tell them about it. The board has folks from all kinds of Cleveland services as members and the City Council Chairman Martin Sweeney was […]

Vague Directions

I don’t like vague directions when I’m trying out a new recipe. Not vague like Patrick’s black beans, but vague like this: I made mango sorbet this weekend and the recipe called for reduced sugar water, but the directions simply said bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer for five minutes. .5C of […]

Adam Pets a Shark

I went to the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo this weekend and took a bunch of pictures. For just $1 extra on the ticket price I got to see the Touch exhibit and feel up some rays and sharks. Did you know that the zoo is free to Cuyahoga County residents on Mondays from 10:00 until 4:00? […]

Criterion Serendipity Continues

So I sold a bunch of NES, SNES games and my PS1 to the Record Exchange yesterday and found the Criterion Collection edition of Monty Python’s Life of Brian in-store. Since they really only want to give you a store credit anyway, I ended up buying it. They had a lot more Criterion films there, […]

Life of Brian

A part of this viewing list: Criterion Collection Spine #61: Monty Python’s Life of Brian. I’m taking a bit of a break from watching Criterion films I’ve not seen before and doing a little catch-up by writing reviews for films I’d seen before I decided to work on this list. Appropriately, Monty Python’s Life of […]


I need to start exercising again. The marathon was aborted because of my knees and a lack of motivation, coupled with the fact that I was in Nashville anyway. Running and pushups and situps should commence now that the weather is nice again. If I can run 5 days a week in the middle of […]

Nashville Wrap-up

I’m home now, and I’ve finally managed to upload all of my pictures. You can view the set here. On Sunday the Cleveland Contingent met to create an action plan for a project here in town. We didn’t have very long to work, but we decided to structure a survey to be submitted to Cleveland […]

Downtown Nashville

Trying to get a WiFi signal in Nashville is like trying to find a pair of fishnet pantyhose at a hardware store. Or like being sent on an errand for headlight oil or a football bat. After my last workshop yesterday I attempted to go to the one WiFi coffee shop I had seen in […]

NeighborWorks: Transforming Conflict Into Action

My third workshop was Transforming Conflict Into Action, something that is also very important in my neighborhood. There are a lot of groups that butt-heads over a variety of issues and this workshop focused on providing us with tools to use effective listening in order to resolve conflict and keep it from resulting in stagnation […]

NeighborWorks: Advocating for Change in Your Community

My second workshop, Advocating for Change in Your Community, focused on its title. I chose to take this workshop because Tremon[s]ters are stubborn even for Cleveland and when two people have opposing viewpoints on a neighborhood issue it is often hard to mediate or even gain something that has the appearance of consensus. Effective change-advocacy […]

NeighborWorks: Adults and Youth Working Together

My first workshop was focused on building lasting and effective relationships between adults and youth in neighborhoods. To our benefit, there was a 17 year old girl in our workshop whose insights vastly improved the quality of the workshops. I was looking for information on how to get youth in my ‘hood involved and keep […]

NeighborWorks Opening Plenary

The NeighborWorks Peak Performance Opening Plenary just finished and I’m chowing on a bagged lunch. The opening remarks were pretty standard, and there were the inevitably long people-we’d-like-to-recognize sessions, but now that it is over I’m ready to go on my first workshop, Adults and Youth Working Together.

NeighborWorks in Nashville

I’m in Nashville for a weekend conference on community organizing sponsored by NeighborWorks America. The weather is beautiful and the people are quite friendly. The downtown is thriving and fully exploiting its country-western roots. I think Cleveland should really put a similar pull on rock and roll. The Country Music Hall of Fame looks about […]

of green woods and bright water

You are pretty with birds on your arms. One day I will startle them and they will carry you into the sky to see the heart laid out below and feel my smile in your hair. v.2 You are pretty with birds on your arms. One day — startled into the sky — A heart […]


A group of folks from all over the country was in town learning about the small grant program sponsored by The Cleveland Foundation. You know, the one I’m on: Neighborhood Connections. A few of the committee members [and one lucky alternate] were asked to go along for a neighborhood tour yesterday and then share dinner […]

Stock Tip

When gas sticks above $3/gal, I’m going to unveil my greatest invention. A milk-powered engine. Invest in dairy cows and breast pumps!

Ice Cream When You’re Sick

When I used to get sick and mom would take off a bit of work to care for me, I wouldn’t have much of an appetite. Often, I’d request ice cream, and, not getting it, would be told that I’m obviously not that sick if I want to eat ice cream. A compromise was usually […]

8 ½

A part of this viewing list: Criterion Collection Spine #140: Federico Fellini’s 8 ½. Cinema is the art form that lends itself most easily to postmodernism and 8 ½ is the most snugly postmodern film I’ve seen in a long time. Self-reflexivity is its bread and butter, and while that may be gimmicky now, it […]

Le Souffle au coeur

A part of this viewing list: Criterion Collection Spine #328: Louis Malle’s Murmur of the Heart. In the Criterion-associated strange synergies of my life I’ve had two separate works in two separate days that replay the story of Oedipus and his mother in new fashions. First, Murakami’s Kafka on the Shore, in which the 15 […]

Pseudo-Intellectual Brainstorm

What if all of us think in the same manner, but only our reactions to those thoughts and stimuli are what shape the perceptions that other people have of our personalities? The above statement has been sitting in draft form for a few months. I had nothing much to add apart from the problematic half-idea […]

At Sterling Pond

At Sterling Pond the reeds are old women whispering; the redwinged blackbird a priest with a martyr’s stole. It will not cease to preach nor the wind kill its wild sermon. This is where you were beautiful all those years ago, when we walked along the shore listening to small waves and tree frogs, hand-in-hand. […]

Upstate Camping

I went camping at Fair Haven Beach State Park in New York this past weekend. The park wasn’t as good as I expected it to be, since it was quite small and mostly marsh, but it was still a fun time. There weren’t very many campers so early in the season, but our site turned […]


This dream had MacGyver in it. Also this humongous underground pyramid complex that we seemed to be both trying to escape from and trying to get into. We’ve escaped to aboveground, a very nice grassy area with a few trees ahead. There is no sky or even anything that could be called a horizon, just […]

Avalanche of Scrap

I know there was more taking place in this dream before I pick it up here, but this is what I remember. I’m driving around town in a fuel-efficient sort of go-cart, except it has bigger wheels and I see a steamroller fall off of a bridge right in front of me. The guy jumps […]

The Promise

I went to an advance [for Cleveland] screening of The Promise last night at the Cedar Lee. This is one of those films that uses CG stuff to keep the budget low at the price of quality. I can’t decide if I’d like it better as completely live-action with no CG or completely done in […]

Bakushû [Early Summer]

A part of this viewing list: Criterion Collection Spine #240: Yasujiro Ozu’s Early Summer. As contemporary dramas go, Ozu’s Early Summer manages to select issues that are both timeless and practical in the instant of their genesis. It is at once a story of post-war Japan and family crisis, and a chance to examine both […]

Lacombe, Lucien

A part of this viewing list: Criterion Collection Spine #329: Louis Malle’s Lacombe, Lucien. Lacombe, Lucien is a film intentionally filled with symbols, almost allegorical in effect, pertaining to issues about the loyalty and responsibility of French civilians during the German occupation in World War II. Lucien is necessarily the most nuanced character, since the […]

Another Movie List

Thankfully I’ve seen a ton of these already. The bulleted and bolded ones. From Roger Ebert: • 2001: A Space Odyssey” (1968) Stanley Kubrick • The 400 Blows” (1959) Francois Truffaut • “8 1/2” (1963) Federico Fellini “Aguirre, the Wrath of God” (1972) Werner Herzog • Alien” (1979) Ridley Scott “All About Eve” (1950) Joseph […]

Jessica’s Wedding

I had a long weekend, travelling to and from Indiana for my cousin Jessica’s wedding. The wedding went off without a hitch, and Jessica was the least stressed and happiest bride I’ve ever seen at a wedding. I had to be down for the rehearsal, since I was reading petitions, and I left work early […]