WHAT SHOULD I BE DOING INSTEAD OF THIS?
 
Home - Blogs - Staff Blogs - Latest Blogs
The Morning After
 
by Danny Cross 03.01.2013
Posted In: Life, LGBT, TV/Celebrity, Culture, technology, Shopping at 09:04 AM | Permalink | Comments (23)
 
 
kindle

Did I Just See a Gay Kindle Commercial?

Last night around 9:30 I was just minding my own business, watching some harmless comedy shows on demand when a commercial came on that piqued my interest via a typically dumb interaction between a dude talking to a babe in a bikini. I was waiting for some type of cliché to end the interaction between the two — something like a beer-commercial crotch shot or the woman doing something weird like licking an ice cube — when the story took a most-surprising turn: the dude in the scene was gay. 

The woman sits down on a beach chair next to the guy, who is squinting into his iPad-looking device like a dork. She starts reading her Kindle like the sun is no big deal and he says: "That's a Kindle, right?"

Woman: "Yeah, it's the new Kindle Paperwhite."

Man: "I love to read at the beach, but..."

Woman: "This is perfect at the beach. And, with the built in light, I can read anywhere anytime."

Man: "Done."

Woman: "With your book?"

Man: Nope. "I just bought a Kindle Paperwhite." *Leans toward her.* "We should celebrate."

Woman: "My husband's bringing me a drink right now."

Man: "So is mine."

Husbands waive from the bar.

I watched it again this morning (the email I sent myself on the subject after having several beers and talking about sports all evening only says: “Gay kindle commercial. What does that commercial mean?”), and it’s actually pretty genius. Gay-rights groups have pointed out that this type of media is following steps taken by shows like Ellen and Modern Family, which depict gay couples as pretty much ordinary anymore. 

Check it out here: 

Naturally, some people on the Internet think it’s way icky. 

And organizations like One Million Moms (a weird, conservative Christian group that should be named something more like “One Million Mean Moms.” Ha.) took exception to it. OMMMs wrote this: “We have Amazon's Kindle Paperwhite commercial that promotes gay marriage. Instead of Amazon remaining neutral in the culture war while showcasing how their product has no glare even at the beach, they chose to promote sin.”

People flagged the ad as inappropriate enough times on YouTube that it was briefly taken down for review, but it was posted back on the site later. 

 
 
by Hannah McCartney 02.28.2013
Posted In: Cinfolk , Culture, Fun, Interviews at 03:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
silhouettes of people

Cinfolk: Sara Bornick

In “Cinfolk,” I ask interesting Cincinnati people doing interesting Cincinnati things questions I’d never get to ask for a traditional news story; the more interviews I do as a writer, the more I find myself daydreaming about what makes these people tick, aside from what I'd usually get to share in a traditional news story. For the inaugural Cinfolk blog featuring German Lopez, click here.
 

If you don't have cabin fever by this time of the year, you probably moved here from Siberia, the Arctic Tundra or  Wisconsin, in which case you're used to mind- and body-numbing misery and cold weather year-round. We're glad you escaped. For the rest of us, it's getting really old coming into work with frozen strands of hair, never having a good reason to drink a margarita, wear a sundress, roll down the windows or eat a popsicle. That's about all I'm thinking about these days, in fact, which is why I got in touch with Sara Bornick, founder and owner of streetpops, freelance graphic designer and proud owner of her very own EasyBake oven.
 
Anyone who's ever been lucky enough to have their teeth stained or a shirt dribbled on by one of Sara Bornick's gourmet, quirky and preservative-free ice pops understands that the transition from winter to spring just can't be complete until every Cincinnatian has the chance to buy the daintily packaged treats from her modest, funky little retro streetpops storefront in Over-the-Rhine.


According to Bornick, who’s been busy preparing for a new streetpops season, she and her cart-
toting team will be selling pops again on Final Friday, March 29. Look out for new pop flavors (like cookies and cream, butter pecan and maybe a chocolate olive oil pop crafted from imported Italian olive oil).


Hannah Mc
Cartney: What was your favorite toy when you were a little kid?

Sara Bornick:
For years I asked for an Easy-Bake oven, but never actually got one ... until I was about 25, as a joke. I was really into LEGOs as a kid, and anything outdoors.

H
M: Dog person or cat person? Why?
SB: Dog! Especially my Boston Terrier, Parker (aka Parker Pantalones).

HM: Did you have a nickname when you were a kid/in college/now? What was its significance?
SB: When I was a kid I was nicknamed "Bugs" because I had to have a lot of teeth pulled before I had braces on, so for a good year or so I only had my two front teeth.

HM: Have you ever met a celebrity? If not, who would you want to meet?
SB: I met chef-celebrity Richard Blais when he was in town on the Top Chef tour. It was right before we launched streetpops in 2011. We talked about a pop place in Atlanta that he loves
and using liquid nitrogen to make pops.

HM: Tell me one guilty pleasure artist on your music player.
SB:
Eighties hair bands/rock ballads — Def Leppard, Guns N' Roses.


 
 
by Jac Kern 02.28.2013
Posted In: TV/Celebrity, Is this for real? at 01:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
bischoff 2

Beardwatch 2013

'Survivor' recap featuring Cincy's Matt Bischoff (and sometimes Reynold Toepfer)

Survivor: Caramoan – Fans vs. Favorites airs every Wednesday at 8 p.m. on CBS. Watch this week’s episode, “There’s Gonna Be Hell To Pay” here. (Skip to the last minute to check out a preview of next week’s ep, “Kill Or Be Killed.") This recap primarily follows the fans because the local Matt Bischoff and ex-Cincinnatian Reynold Toepfer are part of that tribe and I pretty much fast forward through all other scenes.


Even though Matt's alliance (six of the 10 Gota "fan" tribe members) voted off Allie last week, this week's episode opened with a very livid Shamar leaving tribal council. The Iraq War vet who seems to rub everyone the wrong way was angry that his name (voted by the four pretty people) was even on the chopping block. But his fury wasn't just directed at the three remaining cool kids. All of Gota felt his wrath, including Cincy's favorite beardo.


                                   Matt shaking his finger in Shamar’s face — something he was not allowed to discuss in a previous interview

Reynold continued his reign of douchiness by calling the vote to send Allie home "revenge of the nerds." Hey, Reynold: less bullshit, more bulge. Thanks.

Sherri talked about how she owns fast food franchises so she knows how to deal with awful teenagers, and hence, Shamar. Despite his apparently unbearable demeanor, she wants to keep him around. Shamar mentioned wanting to quit the game for about 30 seconds, but later decided he's "not gonna be the angry black man on Survivor." His revelation included an emotional story about being a a veteran and adjusting to life post-war.

Everyone quickly dried their tears and headed to the Immunity challenge, where the reward was "comfort" (beach chairs, a couple throw pillows, tarp and rope). It was a very close race, but the fans lost once again. At council, Shamar pulled out the classic reality show line — "They're trying to throw me under the bus!" — when the tribe pretty much collectively said that Shamar is a big old asshole.

The votes came in: three for Shamar, three for Hope and three for Eddie. You know what that means? It's time for a #revote! (WHO is seriously live-tweeting Survivor?).

Hope was voted out. Looks like Matt's alliance won't even turn on the utterly deplorable Shamar!

Next week: Rat hurricane!

I really can’t believe people watch this regularly.

 
 
by Jac Kern 02.27.2013
Posted In: TV/Celebrity at 09:12 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
web-blog-ijustcantgetenough-3

I Just Can't Get Enough

Jac's roundup of pop culture news and Internet findings

Beardwatch 2013

Last week on Survivor, most of the episode was devoted to the Bikal tribe, aka the Favorites. Our homeboy Matt Bischoff didn’t get a ton of airtime, but was selected to join an alliance with Sherri, Laura, Julia, Shamar and Mike. The other alliance, referred to as “The Lovers,” is comprised of the four attractive people who bonded early on their collective attractiveness. When Gota got their buts kicked in the immunity/reward challenge, Cincy-born Reynold Toepfer immediately addressed his issues with Shamar. The Iraq War veteran, who started a tiff with Matt last week, prefers to “conserve energy” and do crazy Pilates stretches over wasting time fishing, securing the shelter or doing pretty much anything else.

                                                              Feel the burn!

After Reynold spoke his peace, he proverbially slipped in an extra chair at the popular kids’ lunch table and asked Matt to join the pretty people’s decision and vote Shamar off, going against Matt’s original alliance.

Later, Reynold found a hidden immunity idol (which is a thing?) that protects whoever’s in possession from elimination. After hiding the object in his pants, trying to keep it secret, Laura immediately noticed a telling “bulge” and knew the plan to eliminate one of the Lovers was foiled. Clearly, this was all just a producer’s plot to get people to talk about Reynold’s “bulge.” Success! Unfortunately, Reynold did not give his immunity idol to cuddle buddy Allie, and the blonde got six out of 10 votes (Matt stuck with his original alliance). Looks like there’s more space at the popular table!

Speaking of locals on TV, it looks like Cincy has their own Sons of Anarchy (I wish).

You know how at the end of every Law and Order episode, a message states that the stories are not based on actual events? Well, we all know that’s a bunch of bullshit, and this week’s upcoming episode of Special Victims Unit couldn’t make that any more clear. Via Dlisted:

A famous young Hip Hop couple in a physical dispute screams “Chris and Rihanna!” but, in SVU world, the abuser done gets killt!

People love it when local products make national news. The latest: BuzzFeed’s list of “Cincinnati Foods That Are Better Than Yours.” Sure, you’ve got the ubiquitous Skyline and Montgomery Inn (yawn, sorry), but there are some fresh Cincy exports like Tom + Chee’s grilled cheese donut, Kings Island’s blue soft-serve and portable yums from It’s Just Crepes.

Check nearly any humor blog/Internet recreation site and you’ll likely find a list of the “Worst Tattoos EVAR” complete with misspellings, poor drunken decisions and unfortunate portraits. Also, you’ll probably see this picture. Well, not anymore — Scott Versago of Akron’s Ohio Ink Studios fixed the butchered tat! Channeling my guilty pleasure crush Oliver Peck (panel judge on Ink Master and ex-husband of Kat Von D — don’t judge me), I have to say the “new” tat has entirely too much dark shading, but it’s certainly an improvement and looks much more like the original woman who passed away.

The Oscars were kind of fun this year. Seth MacFarlane didn’t attack us with his arsenal of voices (though many saw his jokes as misogyny at its finest) and the awards were pretty spread out among the films (as opposed to the usual one or two favorites). But after watching Saturday’s Film Independent Spirit Awards, no other movie awards show will match up. The much-funnier-than-MacFarlane Andy Samberg hosted, the show is uncensored on IFC and the evening was brought to us by Jameson, an apparently magical ingredient for a high-larious evening. And, yes, independent films are way cooler than Lincoln.

The night kicked off with the award for Best First Screenplay (See what I mean? What a cool award.) As the camera panned around to all the nominees, Derek Connolly (of the perfectly surreal Safety Not Guaranteed) took a giant swig of what appeared to be a wine glass full of Jameson (each table had a half gallon!). To his surprise, Connolly won and went on to make a speech that stumbled along for more than six minutes (this was what appeared to be the only time the show was cut/censored), ending with a fabulous moment with the one and only Bryan Cranston. Check out this moment and more highlights:


And one last Oscars gripe: I was enraged to see Channing Tatum perform an entire dance sequence onstage without tearaway pants, Ginuwine's "Pony" or a single pelvic thrust. They totally overlooked a potential Magic Mike nod and I don't appreciate it.

 
 
by Jac Kern 02.22.2013
Posted In: Fun, Food, Drinking, Eats, Events at 11:34 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
lighthearted-donut-lrg

Your Weekend To Do List: 2/22-2/24

More and more restaurants and food trucks are offering late-night yums to meet the demands of the area college students, bar crowds and general night owls. Usually “fourth meal” conjures up the thought of tacos or pizza, but what about donuts? Busken has set up a pop-up donut shop at 1218 Vine St. (between A Tavola and Sloane Boutique), open 7 p.m.-midnight Thursdays and 7 p.m.-1 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays through March 16. Here, guests can swing by after dinner or drinks for a free Lite-Hearted donut, Busken’s new heart-shaped glazed treat. After tasting one of these bad boys, you’ll be shocked to find they’re only 140 calories a pop. You won’t have to feel too bad about indulging in a mindnight snack, but you may be left wondering whose soul Busken had to sell to get these delicious donuts to clock in at 2.5 grams of fat.

Bockfest might not officially begin until next weekend, but events leading up to the big parade and festival are already in full effect. Friday is the annual Precipitation Retaliation Happy Hour at Milton’s Tavern. Why the retaliation? In 2008, a huge snowstorm nearly shut down Bockfest, so the next year a paper snowman was set ablaze as a sacrifice to the precipitation gods. The burning snowman tradition stuck, and it continues tonight at 8 p.m. Grab a drink and watch the sucker burn!

In the market for some unique furniture, home décor or apparel? 20th Century Cincinnati is a must this weekend. The 19th annual show brings vintage and mid-century modern trends to a one-stop shop at Sharonville Convention Center. Sixty dealers bring furnishings, paintings, textiles and much more, filling 20,000 square feet. And fashionistas: There will be lots of vintage clothing, costume jewelry, accessories and more dating from the ‘20s to the ‘80s. The showroom is open 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday; $7 admission is good for the full weekend. Find more info here.

The Northern suburbs of Cincinnati sometimes get left out of the city’s biggest celebrations, so they made one their own! The Taste of Northern Cincinnati, also in the Sharonville CC, features food from some of the top eateries in the ‘burbs. From noon-4 p.m. Sunday, attendees will enjoy grub from LaRosa’s, Red Squirrel, Velvet Smoke BBQ, Blue Goose and more. These restaurants will also be competing for awards for best appetizer, salad, entrée, dessert and a people’s choice prize. Admission is $18; $5 for kids.

The Academy Awards are Sunday and if your invitation also got lost in the mail (every damn year!), there’s a local way to celebrate. People Working Cooperatively presents its annual Oscar party at the Hilton Netherland Plaza, complete with a red carpet, cocktails, dinner, and a live screening of the show. Ticket sales benefit PWC’s Modifications for Mobility Program, which helps low-income, elderly and disabled homeowners make important alterations to their houses so they can remain safe and comfortable in their own homes. Buy tickets and find details here.

Check out our To Do list and full calendar for more events, art exhibits, theater shows and concerts.

 
 
by Hannah McCartney 02.21.2013
Posted In: Cinfolk , Interviews, Culture at 12:54 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
silhouettes of people

Cinfolk: German Lopez

When journalists interview people, it's more often than not about something very specific. When we interview the governor, his press person would definitely give us a dirty look if we threw in questions like, "What's your favorite '90s boy band?" or, "Did OJ do it?" We're there to discuss something specific, and straying too far outside that topic is viewed as either a waste of the interviewee's time or an invasion of privacy.

The reality is that there are more facets to the people we interview than we'll ever know. What was Senate Chef Daniel Wright's favorite toy when he was a kid? What does CityBeat editor-in-chief Danny Cross order at Taco Bell?

The answers to questions like these don't define a person, but neither do their jobs, possessions, political leanings, philanthropic efforts or social status. It's a little bit of everything. In this blog series, I'll be picking random Cincinnatians who are doing something interesting, call them on the phone/harass them on the street and ask five or six weird questions and hope I don't get yelled at. Feel free to comment if there's someone you'd like to suggest.

As a practice go, I'm first interviewing my cubicle mate and reporter extraordinaire, German Lopez. If you don’t recognize the name German Lopez, it’s because you probably never read CityBeat, so shame on you. Around the office, he's known for his dry sense of humor, really liking donuts, ditching all of our happy hours and one time writing almost an entire issue by himself. He's the one we all go to when we need him to explain in plebeian language the meaning of complicated political and economic data.

Hannah McCartney: What's your favorite most recent viral video?

German Lopez: The video of Eddie, the geriatric sea otter with arthritis who can dunk a basketball, definitely tops my list right now. I think CityBeat should run a cover story just profiling Eddie. It's probably more important than the governor's budget proposals.

HM: When you sit down to write an article, what's the process like? Describe your work style.
GL: Before I start writing an article, I complete most of my research, interviews and an outline. Once that's all together, I sit down and write the entire article, whether it's 500 or 4,000 words, all at once. The first draft is usually a disaster, but I do extensive copy editing to fix up the structure and wording after that. The editing probably takes me longer than the writing process because I have to fact check every line and make sure it's all written in an easily digestible manner.

HM: What was the last meal you cooked for yourself?
GL: Chicken cutlets with mashed potatoes and corn. It was freaking delicious. But I rarely cook for myself. One of the upsides to having a stay-at-home husband is I usually get home to a delicious cooked meal. The only downside is I have to make all the money.

HM: Where's your favorite place to sit down and read a book in Cincinnati?
GL: On the couch at home while surrounded by my ferrets, cat and husband. But I usually read political blogs, newspapers and e-books on my iPad instead of actual print.

HM: What website can you not go a day without checking? Why?
GL: There are a bunch of answers to this, but the top choice is probably Wonkblog, the domestic policy blog at The Washington Post. It has all the studies and graphs I need to form an educated opinion on major political issues. And CityBeat.com, of course.
 
 
by Jac Kern 02.20.2013
Posted In: TV/Celebrity, Drinking at 01:13 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)