Ethnic Diversity

Posted in Ohio, Travel with tags , , , , , , , , , , on July 11, 2010 by melvisx

I grew up with the misguided notion that California was ethnically diverse, or maybe I just confused ethnic diversity with being accepting of people who were different from me. The eastern part of the country is far more diverse than California. At the museum of Labor and Industry there were all kinds of people represented, mostly Italian, but also Polish, Czech’s, Slovaks, Hungarians (Hunky’s), Greeks, and numerous others. I was particularly struck by this diversity as Ten was surfing the radio dial and tuned in some polka music and the German tunes which you can hear by clicking here: \”Silly Germans\”


“You’ll Shoot Your Eye Out Kid!”

Posted in Ohio, Travel with tags , , , on July 11, 2010 by melvisx

Sunday was the pilgrimage to the Christmas Story house.  Totally worth it.  Not only was the house awesome, the actor who played the little brother Randy was there!  I was actually surprised at the number of people who were there.  Long story short, the house was put on the market in 2006 and the owner put it on eBay for 99,900. Some dude in San Diego, thinking in California real estate terms, thought this was a good deal, so good in fact that he thought there might be a bidding war so he offered 125,000.  The owners snapped it up seeing as how other houses in that hood were going for 50-60,000.  The new owner renovated the house, which had fallen into disrepair, bought three more houses in the neighborhood for a gift shop and museum, all to the tune of 200,000+ dollars.  He has made that all back and them some because several hundred people have visited.  There was a map of the US in the museum with push pins representing the places people had come from to see the house; the entire north east was covered by push pins, the rest of the map is filling in too, I’d say 60% is covered.  The house itself is fairly small and doesn’t look exactly like the one in the movie, most of the scenes were filmed on a soundstage in Canada.  The leg lamp delivery and set up in the window, Ralphie in the bunny suit and his fantasy of shooting Black Bart with his air rifle were filmed at the house, as were all the external shots of the house.  They let us wander all over the house which was better than the tour of the Army Museum of Local History because our guide hovered around all the time.  After the Christmas Story house we went to a state park called The Ledges; awesome rock formations.  All in all, a great day.  I spent $60 at the Christmas Story House gift shop…..was that too much 😉




Major Award!

Electric sex glowing in the window


I said fuuuuuuudddggge.

Overheard at the gas station

Posted in Ohio, Travel on July 10, 2010 by melvisx

“Yeah! Gotta get sum more bass in that shit nigga!” says the tall black woman in the gold camoflage overall shorts with matching gold hair.

Ten leans over as she’s pumping gas and whispers, “There’s a  crackhead prostitute over by the door.”

Sure ’nuff there was.

Hey, ho, Ohi-o

Posted in Ohio, Travel with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 9, 2010 by melvisx

It’s a little damp and threatening thunder and lightening today so we hit a couple of museums. The first was the Butler Museum of American Art which normally has an Edward Hopper piece hanging, but it is currently on loan to a museum in Rome; doggone it. The Butler was the first museum exclusively dedicated to American art. Saw some great landscape paintings, the Lincoln “Rail Splitter”, some Wyeth’s, and some fun hologram art. One installation allowed me to take a picture of 121 images of myself; who wouldn’t want to see that? After that we headed downtown for some pizza and I snapped a photo of the plaque dedicated to the Warner Brothers, yes, the people responsible for Bugs Bunny are from Youngstown. While munching on pizza some dude came in to use the facilities then had an angry conversation with someone on his cell phone involving lots of expletives and stuff like, “I’m not gonna do that shit man!” We exited the pizza place into an apparent crack deal. It seemed like one dude was giving a crackhead some money for food, and the crackhead wanted to give him some crack in return, but the first dude said, “I don’t get high”

“You don’t drink, smoke, or nuttin’? Dat’s gud.”

“Ain’t no thing, man.”

From there we went to the Museum of Industry and Labor which is dedicated mostly to the steel industry. It was a well done museum and I got to dress up like a steel worker and pose with some as well. The museum also had some very informative and helpful signs for the workers which you can see in the photos. We arrived home to a mildly panicked 12 year old german shepard/lab mix named Cadence. She was sensing the impending thunderstorm we think. She’s calmed down….for now.

Bierstadt-forgot to get the title

121 images of me.

Wonder if the buffalo are fooled

Yosemite Valley

Youngstown, home of the Warner Brothers

I see these all over.

Only half the gear and I was super hot

Samuel P. Gompers quote for my history peeps.

Multilingualism is ingrained in our history.

Guess it

Not Entirely Ohio

Posted in Ohio, Travel with tags , , , , , on July 9, 2010 by melvisx

Ok, so I made a big deal about adventuring in Ohio, well, Youngstown was really hot and humid so we headed to the Carnegie Museums of Art and Natural History in Pittsburgh where we could be inside and cool.  But before we headed down there we had breakfast at the Yankee Kitchen.  I had biscuits and gravy, the picture does not do the meal justice; trust me, it was tasty.  They also had awesome home fries and a giant, scary lookin’ chef; he was ‘No Country for Old Men’ scary if you know what I mean.  (One thing that I need to add before I continue is that the Great Lakes are HUGE.  I’m just sayin.  They don’t look all that impressive on the map.)  The Museums were cool and contained far too much for me to talk about here.  There were a lot of displays which either featured animals attacking animals, animals attacking humans that were trying to kill the animals, and in the bird wing there were several, well, dead birds.  Yes, I know birds in museums are dead, but theses birds weren’t mounted and lifelike; they had toe tags.  There was also a display, which you can see in the pictures, that had a dead toucan in front of a box of Fruit Loops; someone obviously has a sense of humor.  Also saw some paintings, of which the Edward Hopper was my favorite, some cool arts and crafts furniture, some ancient artifacts, typical museum fare.  I could have done without certain parts of the modern art wing though, just weird stuff.  After the museum we went to Penn Brewery, had some good beer an German appetizers: potato pancakes, pretzel with pub cheese, and buffalo wing pierogi’s, ok so the last one probably isn’t German, but it was tasty.  Our waiter tipped us to the Church Brew Works which was near by.  This place as a former church of St. John The Baptist that has been turned into a brew pub! It was truly magical.  The pulpit contained all the brewing equipment and most of the pews had been converted to booths.  Whoever thought of this idea was a genius. On the way home Ten decided to drop into a ghetto Kwik-e Mart.  Wasn’t too scary, just odd.  Mostly empty shelves and coolers of stuff only crackheads would think to buy.  I bought a water.

Not Entirely Ohio Pics

Posted in Ohio, Travel with tags , , , on July 9, 2010 by melvisx

Breakfast at Yankee Kitchen. Tasted better than it looks.

Big Ol’ Dino Head

Big Ol’ Dino

Museum sending a subliminal message?

Bring me Drouin!!!!!!!!!!

One for my Tracy peeps.

Penn Brewery

The Church Brew Works


(insert heavenly angels singing here)


Posted in Ohio, Travel on July 8, 2010 by melvisx

Not sure what this lable bodes about my trip other than fun!