Roanoke businesses: panhandlers may keep customers away

Roanoke businesses: panhandlers may keep customers away

Why is it that DBJ is the only station or even media outlet to report on this story consitently? This is about the 3rd story Ive seen on this topic on DBJ. And no where else.

This is a Quality of Life issue, which I wrote about a while back. The only way your going to end this problem, is to either ban them from the Market area or get them jobs in the market area.

And if they refuse - they leave.

Tough Noogies.

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Google Base

Google Base

A few short days from the launch of GoogleBase, and allready there are TONS of items listed. THis is just a simple search I did for Home, but I have allready searched basset and had some interesting results, as I did dog.

Hey, its free, and as of right now - you cannot physically purchase anything through google itself. But Im guessing thats next weeks little bit of fun. If they drop Google Wallet/Payment next week, a traditionally upbeat week for the markets, you can best Google will be closing the week above $425, if not $450.

Just my non-Google stock owning $.02 cents worth.

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Oh baby, its cold outside....

Cold, but somehow sleep inducing. Probably because Im still shaking off the haze of sleep itself, the cold conjuring up the memory of warm blankets.


So you've got your podcast, give a listen. It has NOTHING to do with Roanoke, so your all safe this week.

Just this week.

Other than that, not much to report today - thankfully.

Ummm.. Victory Stadium is stupid! City Council eats snails!

Gripe! Gripe!

Happy now?
My Odeo Channel

It was a choice to go with the hot pink button this time. And yes I am calling it hot pink.

I make good on a threat to expose you folks to some music from my past.

Try not to grin too much, or bang thy head (metal health will drive you mad).

but you can always turn your speakers up LOUD, as long as no one else is around.


Pocket-lint.co.uk MIT unveils $100 laptop to the world - PLUS IMAGES news story

Pocket-lint.co.uk MIT unveils $100 laptop to the world - PLUS IMAGES news story

Not only does google breach the $400 barrier, MIT unleashes the $100 laptop.. yes, its lime green.

Lime Green!

Like a Pinto!

goog - Google Search

goog - Google Search: "402.61 +4.46 (1.12%) 17 Nov at 10:25AM ET
Open: 401.80
High: 403.81
Low: 401.20


Damn me for not buying in when I had the chance.... grrrrrrrrrr

mind if I go out on a limb here..

This is really really off topic for me. Something I don't often discuss with such abandon.

My religion.

Here ya go..

Im Roman Catholic.

I don't get to church as often as I'd like. I mumble my way through half the songs when I do go. I don't come from a touchy-feely, sing-song, tell the world church. As a matter of fact, sometimes I still get thrown at mass when something I remember clearly speaking is being sung.

I'm probably your basic, run-of-the-mill RC. I think the pope is generally ok, for what he does. I think sometimes he should just keep his mouth shut about certain things. I understand that faith and doctrine sometimes mean he has to open it - but seriously, don't.

I think any preist involved in a sex-scandal should be hung, drawn and quartered. I would absolutely NOT sit through a Latin mass, I don't care how beautiful you think it is. I have sinned, we all have. And I fully understand that my sins will come back to haunt me. Although being saddled with a snoring dog might just be payback.

I have read enough of the bible to know that theres a whole lot of mystery surrounding it, I've questioned what I've read and not recieved decent answers.

But as a whole Im very happy in what I've found.

Now I realize this may come as a shock to some of you, but apparently I'm the first Roman Catholic some of you have met. It happens.

I don't particularly care about the selling of alcohol at the Civic Center.
Quite frankly I think theres better things in this world to spend your time on.

One of those things being making this world a better place. And not in a religious way either. I'm not particularly interested in wether or not you've accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and personal savior. Although I have been asked myself many times. And no, not just here.

Let me tell you of a group in NYC. They call themselves the "Black Israelites." They stand on the same street corner every day, usually with megaphone in one hand, bible in the other. They quote and quote from the book as if it were going to startle you into realizing what an asshat you've been all your life, and maybe you should start following them. Well, its usually the megaphone that startles. But they, like many others, have found a way to interpret the Biblical passages as proof that God (G-d to all my Hebraic brethren out there) never intended man to love his fellow man. Well, let me rephrase that - the races to love the races. They are the biggest race-baiters I have ever met. With megaphone in hand (and permit in pocket, so its all legal) they harass those who walk by with tales of "The Good Lords intent for the White man to be separated from the Black Man."

Yeah, ok... I'll happily separate myself from anyone yelling into a megaphone.

But as far as anyone can tell, theyre fairly nice to those whom they believe they are supposed to be nice to.

And as far as I see it, thats pretty much what it's all about.

We have 10 rules, 10 whole rules which apparently very few people make it past the first 3.

Lets review - to clear up any interpretation problems now:

1. I am the Lord, your God...
Yes, yes you are.
2. You shall have no other gods besides Me...Do not make a sculpted image or any likeness of what is in the heavens above...
Well, to be honest - Im not much of a sculptor, besides - how can you sculpt the unknown, and unknowable?
You shalt not swear falsely by the name of the Lord...
Whoops... on a daily.. hourly.. basis.
Remember the Sabbath day and keep it holy
I keep tryin, but work does not agree.
Honor your father and your mother...
I guess Jesus was one of those easy teens. I wasn't.
You shall not murder...
So far, so good. Im not saying anything more than that.
You shall not commit adultery...
If I don't want my wife breaking #6 I won't.
You shall not steal...
Well, I don't.. anymore.. does a paperclip count? Again, see comment on #5, and deny you were ever young.
You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor...
Nope, no reason to. They seem to screw up pretty well on their own. Besides - every man (and woman) should stand accountable for what they do, wether to themselves or to the world.
You shall not covet your neighbor's house...
I dunnknow, dude's living pretty large.. As far as I see it, this one is about being happy with who/what/where you are. And remembering it could always be better, and it could always be worse. Be thankful.. oooh, concept.

So theres your 10 commandments. To me, they seem pretty straight-forward. With the exception of variations on wording in different translations, the song remains the same. And it all goes back to that golden rule.

Do unto others as you would have done unto you.

And because Im just that darn literate, in the Wiccan Rede the words have changed but the song remains the same. "An it harm none, do what ye will."

Its a little thing we used to call Personal Responsibility, which suffered grevious injury when the woman sued McDonald's and won for her own spilt coffee.

Now all Im saying to you folks out there who are non-Roman Catholic, Im here. Im not doing much, Im not eating babies or smearing blood on your doors. (2 things I've heard, the first as a joke; the 2nd as a confusion with the story of the Hebrews escape from Egypt and slavery)

My wife is not wearing a "Jewish Star/Jewish Cross", although she has heard both.

I know all about the history/herecy/lunacy/spoonacy(sounded good) of the Holy Roman Catholic Church. I too have heard tell of the vast resources of wealth and information to be found in the Vatican Archives. I once thought I heard a calling, but realized it was only to be less of a schmuck and more of a mensch. Not a problem, Im doing the best I can.

I don't believe the Pope is the devil incarnate, although the Burger King guy might be. I think your faith is something you live, not talk about endlessly. (again, black israelites - lose the megaphone.) As the Hulk (Hogan) once said, "Train hard, say your prayers, and take your vitamins."

Hey, it worked on me back then. I was in fighting shape.. if I was fighting a battleship.
Where Im from people of all faiths come together at one place, at one time to share in something special. Something almost magical. We call it Bingo.

I have been to Bingo games at Catholic Schools & Jewish Temples, and I can tell you - all the faiths of the world are represented, and when the balls start popping - the hardest thing to remember is the Golden Rule. But in the end, the monies collected go back into the parish, the temple and the community. At my RC school growing up, a portion of the money went towards ministries in 3rd world nations - to provide food and clothing, and a larger portion accomplished the same goals right in my very neighborhood. My parochial school took part in UNICEF fund drives, where a small milk box dedicated for donations was handed out to all students who then brought them home and left them in the family areas. Change was dropped in, but the end result was far greater than the money portrayed.

I have met with, and been instructed by Catholic preists from all around the world, and laughed with ones local to my home. A stand-out happens to be one Fr. Cappuccino - yes, you heard his name right. Long before Starbucks made the name a household word, we were all taught by Fr. Mocha Latte/Fr. Espresso/Fr. Coffee. He made the whole "Be like Jesus" thing seem fairly obvious, easy to do yet easier to screw up. But that was ok, because as long as you could keep trying to do the right thing, someone understood.

Might not be your parents, but eventually you would be understood.

To this day Fr. Cappuccino continues his work in the community (which thanks to Google, I can easily find - The Divine Search Engine?) making the community he is in easier for seniors and those with physical limitations to navigate.

In short, Rome is just a place, the Pope just a man, the Bible a book, the words within just that - words. It all comes down to wether or not you want to be the kind of person you can Google years from now and feel blessed to have even known them.

Yes, Jesus was here. It says so. Not in the book, but in the earth. Call him Jesus, call him Yahweh, God, G-d, or Phil for all it matters. The importat part is that you understand that all whoever is up there wants for us down here is peace and quiet, a life of love and joy, and grief and sorrow in proper proportions.

When we get up there, whatever happens happens. Theres no sense in trying to polish your resume to the diety holding the video camera.

Maybe the Catholics are wrong, maybe the Christians are - maybe the Black Israelites are right. Or the Jews. Does it matter if you've been a decent human being? Probably not, because believe it or not - I have it on good information that there is no Hell.

Yeah - you heard me, no Hell.

Hell is just an endless replaying of your life, over and over and over. Except you get to watch it. You watch the same mistakes endlessly, you see where you went wrong time and time and time again. Hell is regret. Hell is the knowledge that you never became as good as you should have been. Hell is knowing you could have been better.

Purgatory is the same thing, just in a shorter time slot and edited for content.

And heaven is knowing you were as good as you could have been, you did the best you could with what you were given.

Of course there are levels to it all.. I have to belive there is a special place in Heaven for those who are addicted and afflicted. And specialized regions of Hell, where perhaps Hitler sits in a steel showering chamber, with a small window that looks out on a canister of Zyklon B, living the life of one of his victims.

Im not saying Im a great Catholic.. by no means would I even DARE to think it. All Im really getting at is that our wants, our needs, and our reason for the faith are not all that different. It's all in how we interpret the words. But even still - the end result is the same.

I hope this will be the last time I write about this, as it is a topic which seems to set the world afire.

I could have gone on longer, but I don't see the point. With any luck - this will dissapate into the ether and long be forgotten.


Google Base

Google Base

And so the base goes live...

Thanksgiving 2005

Printer Friendly Version

This will be a little unusual, but Im going to crossover this post with the Chef K blog.

We have 2 distinctly different stories here, both of which require hard examination. I'm going to be wearing 2 hats here, so you'll have to bear with me.

Im going to have to sit down with myself to hash this one out.. so "Enter mystery guest and please sign in...."

Chef K: Thanks for calling me in on this one, saves me alot of typing later.

RoanokeFound: Not a problem, besides - once I saw it, I knew you'd want in.

CK: Got that right...

RF: Allright - getting down to it, this article reports on a nationwide trend that is picking up steam here in Roanoke, the purchasing of holiday dinners.

CK: Now we are obviously not talking Swansons dinners here, were talking about turkeys in the 12-14 lb and up range, cooked for your convience, Hams cooked and glazed - sliced on the bone. Some turkeys Ive seen come the same way - they slice it after its cooked, and reassemble it so all you have to do is dish it out.

RF: Now the article says this is both convient and a god-send for those time-pressed families. Convienet, certainly. A god-send for time pressed families? Well thats where I take issue.

CK: Allright hold on a second here, let me tackle the convienence issue first. Yes, its great that you can go and get your turkey with all the trimmings ready to go. I will even admit to having a thanksgiving where we purchased everything pre-made. It's wonderful, but hollow.

RF: Hollow?

CK: Well, look at it this way. Most restaurants and similar places that do it, they have ovens that can easily fit upwards of 10 turkeys at a time. If they are smart they have slow-cooking ovens that can hold them warm too for when you pick them up. The average turkey costs them around 5 bucks, they allready have the spices and seasonings on hand - so theres no real charge for that. And a little secret for you, lest you think those turkeys are sitting in Cambro buckets soaking in brine for 24 hours before they are cooked. Sorry, no - they come packed in the brine.

RF: So what your saying is the turkey itself is probably costing them no more than 10 bucks start to finish to make?

CK: Yep.

RF: Wow.. and Im willing to bet the sides are similar.

CK: All in all, this is a bonanza for a restaurant that might not normally do much business on a monday or tuesday. They spend those two days making the sides, then leave the turkeys in the oven overnight into Wensday, and come Thursday - all they have to do is package it.

RF: Brilliant.

CK: And I might add alot of the stress about making the turkey is a myth anyway. The thing does not have to be in the oven for 8 hours, it does not need to be basted every 30 mins. Dressing only takes a half hour to make, and the gravy is even easier than that.

RF: I know my mother used to bang out cranberry sauce in less than an hour. Water, sugar, salt, cranberries. Thats all she needed to make the sauce.

CK: Thats pretty much all it should be too. Although I do love the gelatinous can-shaped hunk of cranberry sauce, it's not the same as the fresh stuff.

RF: But it is easier to put on a sandwich...

CK: So basically what Im saying is because people feel overwhelmed by Thanksgiving, the restaurants have struck gold.

RF: You mean because people are delusional and lazy...

CK: Wha?

RF: This nonsense about being hard-pressed for time. The notion of the on-the-go family. If you can't slow down to properly do Thanksgiving than maybe you should just eat a Big Mac instead.

CK: Well - it is true that families *feel* more crunched for time these days, regardless of wether or not thats the case. I know I work till 8 at night, and still manage to sit down to dinner every night. Wether I pre-make some of it, my wife makes it.. somehow dinner is being made, and we are sharing it as a family every night.

RF: But you never feel crunched for time right?

CK: Hell no.. Im a cool cat, no pressure kinda guy. It will get done, and done right, when it should be. Don't bring your panic to me because you have little league/soccer/football... I grew up playing in the street. We did not need teams and coaches, we knew how to entertain ourselves.

RF: Yep - I remember that, Two-hand touch football on the front lawn, tackle when it snowed. We would be out from daybreak and not back till sundown. I don't like this organized sports thing, takes kids away from being kids. Maybe instead of playing soccer with coaches and refs and timekeepers - they should just play till they decide to not play anymore. Or maybe they can just play pickup games of baseball, without having a strategy. The adults have brought a list of rules to a place where none should exist except those made on the spot.

CK: You got it. How can you get a ump to call an infield homerun because the trees hung the ball up long enough for you to round all the way home?

RF: You can't, and they would probably have the tree removed anyway.

CK: But aside from all that, what the real issue is - people are spending money for convience. Money which is pure proft for the restaurants...

RF: and would be better spent at home, where they could simply and easily do thanksgiving AND spend time with the family.

CK: The kitchen in any house is a collection point, everyone is in the kitchen at some point during a meal. Thats where grandma taught the kids how to make things, thats where the ancient family secrets were discussed.

RF: But take the kitchen out of the equation and your left with a brief visit to the dining room table, then off to the couch to belch and groan through football. Thereby limiting the family interaction.

CK: Tryptophan, the sleep-inducing compound found in turkey does not make for scintillating after-dinner conversation.

RF: No, but it does make for a nice nap.

CK: Lets talk for a moment about family histories.

RF: Umm.. k?

CK: In my family, there are two places you get to hear about the family history in detail. The kitchen and the table. The kitchen while cooking, and the table while playing cards.

RF: Right. Same in mine, at any gathering of the trible the family seems to come into the kitchen and all matters of discussion break out.

CK: But if you are buying the meals pre-made, where are you having those kitchen talks?

RF: Im going to guess your not, which might be why so many people feel its appropriate to tell you their life story at inappropriate times.

CK: Could be, but you have a habit of attracting the less sane anyway...

RF: Right. Hey, heres another point. Where are you going to learn all those cool tips?

CK: Exactly - my wife learned that a turkey must be fully thawed before thanksgiving a while ago. In her family, theres a tradition of teaching the poor birds how to swim on Thanksgiving.

RF: I have an aunt who has problems remembering to take the gizzards out before it goes in the oven.

CK: Nice.. well at least its halfway to gravy when it comes out.

RF: Never thought of it that way, too busy laughing.

CK: Heres a helpful tip for you to save time "basting" (which does nothing.. NOTHING for the meat of the bird): Take 1 stick of butter and cut in half, allow it to soften for a few minutes. Place each half between sheets of wax paper or plastic wrap. Press or roll butter out till thin and large. Add some seasoning to the top of the butter sheets, and press a bay leaf into each one. Refrigerate wrapped in plastic, but still flat.

Then all you need to do is slide it up under the skin of the bird, you did remember to loosen all the skin you can? Slide the butter up under there, and stick it in the oven. The butter then becomes your baste, pre-seasoned and rich. And you don't have to open the oven door. Period.

RF: Oh, and get yourself one of those digital thermomters with the probe... the less you open the oven door the better. Mine has a remote so I can go wander and take the temp with me.

CK: Choose some appropriate background music, leave some snacks out.. and see how fast your kitchen fills up with people. The smells alone will entice them. And you never know - leave a pile of green beans sitting around and someone might just snap them for you. It's amazing how these things happen.

RF: Or feel free to continue this trend of sterile holidays, where you have not had anything to do with the meal except buy it and eat it. Lose out on the warmth of the family moments, moments that you would have had if you were in the kitchen. And keep promising yourself that maybe next year you'll have the time.

CK: You do have the time. Just do what the restaurants do, make stuff little by little. You could make the cranberry sauce this week and freeze it - it would be fine on Thanksgiving. Stuffing (dressing, whatever) can be made 3 days ahead, then just baked the day of.. but have it laid out in your pan allready. You can even freeze it like that if you wish, just sprinkle breadcrumbs over the top before baking so they absorb any extra moisture.

RF: Or just buy stove top - it only takes, what.. 5 minutes to cook and 10 to sit quietly? 3 minutes for me to eat the whole batch though. Always my downfall.. I love me some stuffin'.

CK: I guess what it boils down to is values. If your going to go the pre-packaged route - then at least be sure to spend time with your family, doing something... anything.. in the kitchen on the holiday. Make a pie.

RF: Don't go shopping... last minute food items fine.. but in NY, people were looking for things to do on holidays - so now stores are open on holidays. There are even stores open on Christmas day. Theres one retailer that takes out an ad every year in the papers, proclaiming their gratitude towards their employees, and announcing that "so they can spend time with their families, we will be closed on Christmas Day." A not-so subtle dig at the others who would open, and open early..

RF: Well thanks for coming Chef K.. hope your holiday is traditional this year.

CK: Well, I'll be celebrating Thanksgiving twice.. a small one on Thanksgiving day, then over the weekend - a larger one with the families. Im working Thanksgiving... working so others have a Thanksgiving..

RF: What a martyr. I will be celebrating a big Thanksgiving this year myself.. Provided everyone leaves my stuffing alone.

Well, thats all this time.. Like I said - I wanted Chef K's opinions on this one, along with my own. You probably wont see a crossover like this again anytime soon. Although if you want, you can always contact me if you have a question for Chef K.

Or Contact Chef K at his blog, Chef K of Roanoke

Anyhow.. put that in your smoker and smoke it.


Breaking news from The Roanoke Times -Motley Crue coming to Roanoke

Breaking news from The Roanoke Times -Motley Crue coming to Roanoke

Yeah - around 1987-1989 I was into Crue. I was also into Quiet Riot, Skid Row... et. al. I was Metal. Although looking at that list, one might think Hair Band Boy.

One would be wrong. I was allready hearing rumblings of Sepultura, Metallica (who I consider a hair band), MegaDeth (who I dont), and countless others you probably never heard of.

I did get a touch excited when I saw Poison (original line-up) was going to tour again. Always a fun show. Im longing for a real Anthrax reunion. Seeing Rush tour again would be extremely fulfilling.

Mind you, I was also listening to Iron Maiden, Motorhead, Biohazard, GnR, Danzig (not a word..).

But most important on that list.. beyond even the local boys of Biohazard and Dream Theatre, beyond the inter-coastal likes of Queensryche and Faith No More... there was the one.

The hardest rock in the world.

The most metal of all time.

The band with the record of 129.5 Db, the loudest concert ever played (and pegged).


Mideval Viking Warrior Metal!!!

And how could you not love a band whose songs include: "Violence and Bloodshed", "Defender" narrated by the late Orson Wells (!),

The only band to ever proclaim "Other Bands play, Manowar Kills!"

And all this back before Marilyn Manson got his training bra.

To Quote from them from my highschool yearbook:
"Stand and fight
Live by your heart
Always one more try
I'm not afraid to die

Stand and fight
say what you feel
Born with a heart of steel"

(heart of steel, 1988, kings of metal)

You can't argue with that.

But like all things metal - they came and went and are now back again. In the interim, while searching for more music to lift my moods - I had my brief grunge phase, my goth + industrial moment, but always it came back to the metal. And the sense of drama. Thats one thing you can say about Manowar, they were dramatic - the scale was huge. And only one band fit afterwards.

Fear Factory.

Call it NuMetal, call it Tech-metal. Sure the lyrics read like crap, but its not just the lyrics - its the whole deal. 1998's album Obsolete is a movie without the visuals. You just have to actually HAVE an imagination, and the want to let it run free.

Then there was Cop Shoot Cop - who ran along the with my metal era (1987-1993ish). But better than just metal, they were local.
And brilliant.
At its best (and worst, depending on the song - which was the point) CSC was 2 bassists and a tribal drummer. Think of the NY Subways, in the dead of winter. Cold - bitter cold, and yet still smelly. Or the subways in the summer, hot - ugly, smelly, and hot.

Your beginning to tap into what made CSC so innovative. Two thick cords, one tuned high - one low, and some bashing drums to drive it. No different in winter, spring, summer, or fall. The subways call.

"All the clocks are broken" - Ask Questions Later, 1993
"Take off the mask and tell me what you find
Behind the curtain everyone's deaf dumb and blind
Everyone becomes the one, the one they most despise
You're looking through one glass eye (2x)
Well, you can't see me now, but I'm watching over you

All the clocks are broken...
Every door is open....
Take me to the ocean....
And we'll ride on the hurricane...
until were washed away... "

Maybe I'll give you a taste of all 3 bands on this weeks podcast. I'm going to be kind and bump it up a day too. So this Thursday, a new podcast, featuring my youth on display. Joy.

Long story short.. like HELL will I pay $50 for nosebleed seats to see the Crue. And Im gonna guess $79 for the floor. Not when it used to be $30 to see them and about 4 other bands. Sorry, after the Dr. Feelgood disaster album, when they suddenly got all popular with the "Z Morning Zoo" crowd (dont ask, think teen radio circa 1990) I walked out on the Crue, never to look back. Besides - a quick troll through the band news of the website (only $40 bucks to get access to a better version of the website, which will allow you to pre-order tickets for any show in 2005) shows me they might not make it to Roanoke in one piece. Vince - injured. Tommy - injured. Nikki - old. The other guy (Mick? who cares.. )- old.

Looking more like Social Security Crue.

Can't we take the money we were going to pay to see them, and get like - 20 good bands here?

Oh enough...

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News from The Roanoke Times -Refurbished H&C sign to perk up city skyline

News from The Roanoke Times -Refurbished H&C sign to perk up city skyline

People, get yourselves downtown from 5:30-7pm tonight and witness the relighting of a legacy. the H&C Coffee sign will be fired up tonight, and blaze coffee goodness out across the sky.

Will I be there? No, Im working. Arent I lucky? But I wish I could be..

And no - do not panic, they are leaving the star off until the sign is lit. Which leaves me with a mental note: Be outside around 7pm, watch star light. Should be a sight to see.

New page up over at Forgotten-Roanoke.com if your interested. All pictures from the basement of the Ponce De Leon

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Click here now, for your exclusive opportunity.

Go where few have gone! See where a former editor of the Times fell!



Paint peeling!!!

Eerie feelings!!!!!!

yeah - go.. you likely.. we likey.

(special thanks to TAP for the access...)

roanoke.com - Commentary Stories -A vision for Roanoke's future true to its past

roanoke.com - Commentary Stories -A vision for Roanoke's future true to its past

utterly astoundingly speechless.

you just cant battle this kind of insanity.

a hotel atop mill mountain?

Food court/midscale dining at night that revolves?


Someone needs help, of a professional nature.