There are a lot of bad choices one can make during his lifetime: driving drunk, having unsafe sex and giving a real e-mail address to the cashier at Best Buy are all pretty dumb. Hamilton County Commissioner Todd Portune today said his recent decision to raise the county cigarette tax was a similarly bad choice, but one that wasn’t as dumb as the other options for balancing the stadium tax fund (trying to get money from Mike Brown is straight-up stupid). Portune and fellow commissioner Gregg Hartmann said they approved the tax hike despite its known side effects, which include coughing, dry mouth and losing 13-15 years off your political life for making poor people mad.
THURSDAY DEC. 17
There’s really no comeback when somebody tells you that the place you come from only consists of steers and queers and based on the fact that if you’re not a bull you must be a homosexual. That’s why the state of Texas has historically been hesitant to change its image as an area full of hard-nosed cowboys (they’re not gay at all). The AP reported today that a Dallas elementary school has continued the state’s no homo image by giving an indefinite in-school suspension to a 4-year-old for wearing his hair too long. The father of Taylor “Tater Tot” Pugh says he supports his son’s hairstyle, especially since he plans to donate it to a charity that makes wigs for cancer patients. A district spokesperson said the school can’t consider such details but that the little fruit’s hair will grow just fine in study hall with the kid who keeps wearing skinny jeans to school.
FRIDAY DEC. 18
Managing the effects of economic development is a complicated matter — that’s why it’s taken so long to make the sandlot between the riverfront sports stadiums into an ESPN Zone.
It’s complicated. The Enquirer today reported that among the issues accompanying pending developments in Over-the- Rhine is
where the poor people will live once the rich people move into the Gateway Quarter where the rich people will park when the casino is built at Broadway Commons. City officials say replacing the 1,400 parking spaces is among their biggest concerns — up there with balancing the budget and figuring out how to stop Charlie Winburn from showing Kirk Cameron movies in the break room all the time — and that they’re dedicated to researching how people used to get to work back before cars were invented.
SATURDAY DEC. 19
If you’ve been reading The Cincinnati Enquirer for many years then you know it’s amazingly reliable. (It comes out every single day.) Cincinnati’s
only favorite daily newspaper today proved once again that its innovation knows no bounds, as it ventured away from its mocking of un-convicted people in order to advise office workers on whether or not it’s appropriate to wear a turtle neck-style sweater to their jobs. An Enquirer contributor, via the Local Business section, writes, “Of course you can wear a turtleneck! They’re so goddam cute! And no one will ever assume you’re trying to hide the broken blood vessels on your neck from a make-out session on the Cadillac Ranch dance floor! Go on, girl!”
SUNDAY DEC. 20
To those of us who went to public school, the chicken or the egg analogy can become really complicated with the addition of new variables (if the chicken lives in a slaughterhouse cage, who the fuck put him or the egg in there?). The Enquirer today detailed another sketchy situation, describing Cincinnati Public Schools’ disproportionate assignment of its highly certified teachers to its highly successful schools. The situation raises the question of whether or not great teachers make great schools or if working at a good school allows teachers the time and resources it takes to become certified as a great teacher. Superintendent Mary Ronan said she plans to reevaluate the district’s teacher distribution but that she first has to figure out if there are teachers at Virtual High School or if that’s some kind of educator joke.
MONDAY DEC. 21
For many people, the only five words they ever want to hear from a Catholic priest are, “I won’t touch you again.” Cincinnati Archbishop Daniel Pilarczyk today said in his goodbye homily speech that the five words all people need to learn are “please, thank you, I’m sorry,” the latter of which he repeated for having not reported allegations of sexual abuse by priests decades ago. Pilarczyk said it’s good to be sorry and also to appreciate the multitudinous gifts we receive from God, adding that the church’s $3 million in settlement payments shouldn’t make any donors feel like they wasted their money because there’s plenty of nice stuff around to claim you paid for instead.
TUESDAY DEC. 22
We at WWE! aren’t racist — when we notice someone’s skin tone or accent we preface our observation with the words, “I’m not racist but…” Apparently the new HP Mediasmart computer isn’t so considerate, as its new facial-tracking webcam refuses to recognize black people. HP blamed the glitch on “insufficient foreground lighting” and something called an “algorithm” but admitted that several of its prototypes printed out photos of Chris Rock and said that all black people look the same.
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