Saturday, January 31, 2009


Last night I watched a documentary about Frank Sinatra once again. Of course, this morning woke up to wishing I could sing like Frank. If I had been watching New Yankee Workshop, I would have been thinking of furniture building right off the bat this morning. I should have been watching a weight loss show and really started the morning off with a thought that would help.

Watch this Beauty and Beast-The Way You Look Tonight video clip.

Friday, January 30, 2009

2009 Ground Hog Day

There are many things one may claim to their fame, but only a handful of people can say they have been Chairman of the Licking County Chamber of Commerce and a few others can say they have dressed up in a Ground Hog suit at 5:30am to entertain people who are missing their coffee.

Kurt Harden, the Chamber's Chairman hosted what will be known as a one of kind Ground Hog Day Early Morning Show.

Kurt due to his personality, skill of making people feel good about themselves and knowledge of the local business climate led a meeting today without the normal podium and a more formal atmosphere. From his introductory monologue, top ten list of Licking County, interviewing three CEOs, introducing a pogo stick-jump roping boy and holding a man-eating python around his neck, Kurt kept the event on pace and on time.

If it had been any other person leading the Chamber, they could not have pulled this format off with such a success.

Cheri Hottinger, Lois Ridgley, Kim Lust, Dave Hardy, Mike McDonald, Tom Marcelain and Barbara Doan are known as the "Ground Hog Committee" are proud of you Kurt!

Only two things were missing today: Coffee and Kurt's Red Wings

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Tuesday, January 27, 2009


Some things during life do not change.

Last night I attended an event to listen to Ron Kitchen, the author of Community Capitalism at the Midland Theatre.

I learned a lot, listened with intensity. You can read about this event at

Now as to what has not changed: I was reminded of years ago sitting at the Midland Theatre in the front row with my buddies watching a Saturday afternoon movie and making sure not to miss a single scene. Last night was the same, front row, listening to every word and with buddies.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Bill's column this week is very interesting, but not of real interest to most people. I am happy with Microsoft Explorer as my browser.

But as always: read this article and you will learn something.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Jury Duty, Results

During this past December, I posted comments about my first and third day of serving Jury Duty: Jury Duty, Day One and Jury Duty, Day Three.

Late yesterday the Newark Advocate reported the sentence given to a person who I don't want to know and I know more about him than I really care to know.

Click here: The Final Results

Friday, January 23, 2009

National Handwritten Note Day!

I received the following message this morning from Sean Carpenter, Coldwell Banker's Director of Training:

Good Morning Everyone,

I hope you’re all doing well and ready for a fabulous weekend. I hope you’ll take a quick minute out of your day today to grab a bold ink pen and a note card or blank sheet of paper and reach out and touch someone.

Today is National Handwritten Note Day!

I encourage you to take four or five minutes of your time right now and write a personal note to a former client, a mentor or a family member. When was the last time you communicated with a high school classmate, a former co-worker or a fellow volunteer without using email or Facebook?

We all know the impact a personal, handwritten note can have on our day. Won’t you take the time out now to celebrate National Handwritten Note Day by sending someone a good thought? The receiver of your note will feel good about it… and so will you.


Check out Sean's blog at The Realtors Tool Box

Thursday, January 22, 2009


I just read an article concerning the fire service once again. The District of Columbia Fire Department and EMS Services during the past couple of days were staged to handle everything from frost bitten toes to Ted Kennedy having a seizure. They had been planning for months, five medic strike teams of three medic units and 18 paramedics were in place, out side fire departments with a city guide covering the District while the DCFD covered the large crowds are examples. Read more at

Others were able to learn and pick up some good tips. Fire Chiefs from many metro areas in the USA visited Washington, not for the inauguration, but to watch the DCFD and watch how their plans worked out and found systems they could take home from the lessons learned.

This reminded me why I and everyone else should be on alert. Just standing by watching and listening to others will help you pick up the tips you may need to further your career, help your family or make you a better life in general. As I have been told during the past, the reason to attend a business conference is to steal other people's ideas and use them yourself. I hope someone has stolen mine. If no one has, then I feel bad, because I have been a real thief over the years.

Have you every listened to someone and picked up on the smallest portion of a comment that makes your idea now work? If you have not, you are missing the boat.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009


Published by the Ohio Association of Realtors:

Mortgage rates dropped to their 11th straight weekly decline, reaching new record lows, according to Freddie Mac.

Interest rates on 30-year, fixed rate mortgages averaged 4.96 percent last week week, down from a previous week's 5.01 percent. The low rates have caused a spike in home refinancing loans and a welcome relief to cash-strapped home owners facing a slowing economy and rising unemployment rates.

Other rates were mixed for the week:
15 year fixed rates: averaged 4.65 percent, up from 4.62 percent.
1-year adjustable rate mortgages: fell slightly averaging 4.89 percent from 4.95 percent last week.
5/1 ARMs: averaged 5.25 percent compared with 5.49 percent last week.

Mortgage rates have continued to drop ever since the Federal Reserve announced a plan in December to buy up $500 billion of mortgage securities backed by Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and Ginnie Mae--the government-sponsored enterprises.


A winter time must read post by Kurt Harden at Cultural Offering.

One of the best investment a man can make today in footwear. Discrimination does exist, to this day concerning footwear for men. Women have a selection, men don't. Really men do, but walk into any shoe store or department store, they will be offering 10 lady's shoes to one pair of men's. Guess why? When showing homes, when it comes to most lady's closet you can not tell if the closet floor is carpeted or hardwood!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


Many people are going "green" or talking about it. I have found myself over the past several months thinking about how I can help, but still throw what could possibly be reused away.

My personal thoughts of being green: What can I do to save more money and help the environment along with it? I have not had any major ideas except for turning aluminum cans in for money.

Click here for information and a news program about a "Home made of Tires....."

Monday, January 19, 2009

This weeks Technobuddy column as printed in today's Columbus Dispatch.

Click here for the January 19th article.

Saturday, January 17, 2009


Waking up this morning to -22 degrees, I decided it was a Saturday, only a couple of appointments and no one would really care how I am dressed to stay warm.

The problem at my age is if you wear the newest items available, you end up looking like a teenager or an old man thinking his clothes will help pick up a younger woman. So getting dressed today was not easy, I can never remember it being this cold before.

When I finally sat in my car, I was wearing the style of Ralphie of The Christmas Story. The look is basically the way your mother would have dressed you to go out and play with your friends in the snow. Amazing how five layers can make your arms trapped along the side of your torso.

Click on this link to 16 Stylish Cold Weather Items to review in case you want to dress for the cold and look like your young at heart. I could have used the comforter last night.

Friday, January 16, 2009

FDNY Marine One

I have been interested in fire boats for several years, yesterday New York's Marine One was able to show it's stuff once again to the world. On 9/11 FDNY' marine companies supplied all the water to fight the results of the terrorist attack. For more information on Marine One, click here.

For several unique photos of yesterday's performance by FDNY, NY-EMS and others from, click here.

The City of Newark, Ohio Fire Department has an excellent average response time of less than 4.5 minutes, the first ferry and FDNY equipment arrived with three minutes yesterday.

This is a good reason why the elected officials of all communities across the USA should never consider cutting emergency personnel to help budget cuts. Recently there was a mayor in California who wanted to cut fire personnel because his city had not had a fire death for many years. Maybe if he thinks about it, he will know why!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Heated Windshields

This afternoon I had a good laugh at myself. In 1985 I purchased the first Taurus station wagon sold by Walker & Battat Ford in Heath. Loved the car.

As I was driving around with ice stuck to my windshield today and the rear window perfectly clean due to the electric heater in the rear window to defrost the ice, I wonder why they do not offer a heated front windshield. No loud noise of trying to push blowing heat to the windshield and a fast defrost time. Then I remember the 1985 Taurus.

This car did have electrical elements in the windshield glass and you never had ice built up on the windshield and the noise of wipers making their terrible scraping noise. This is what made me have a good laugh.

I borrowed a friend's radar detector for a family trip to Washington D.C. combined with the U.S. Chamber's legislative meeting driving the Taurus. I was very impressed with the radar detector, 80 mph to Washington and three days later 80 mph back home. No problems, no tickets and a speedy trip.

When I was back in Newark and returned the borrow equipment, I shop for a radar detector and bought one just like my friends. I sat down to read the easy to read instructions, push a couple of buttons and it was working.

The one thing I did not know about the detector on the way to Washington and on the way back: The instructions stated the radar detector does not work with electrical heated windshields. For days afterwards I thought about how lucky I was not to get a ticket. No wonder there was never a beep out of the detector warning me of radar traps.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Community Capitalism

Late yesterday afternoon I spent 1.5 hours attending the first of four meetings breaking down what our community needs to concentrate on for our community to grow in the right direction. This meeting was concerning education of which we are blessed with many great institutions and quality leadership.

Then a young lady stood up to speak, her children were quietly playing in the corner of the room. She brought a subject to the meeting that most would have been scared to mention to a crowd of 80 plus people.

She announced that the community needs help in raising and mentoring the parents. We constantly have mentoring programs for students, one on one sessions with business people and many people from different walks of live so the student know someone is concerned, but we need a mentoring program for some parents who need help in being a good parent. Someone for the parent to vent with their day to day problems of raising a child and encouraging the parent(s) to make sure the child grows up to become a responsible citizen.

Keith Richards of the Newark City Schools commended her for making the comment and then he added: Yesterday the Newark Schools held an expulsion hearing for an elementary age student who had brought a knife to school. Automatically there is an eight day suspension and possible 80 day suspension of which is decided during a hearing as regulated by the State of Ohio. Keith had more concern for the student than the parents, the parents did not attend the hearing.

We found one community problem.

Read the complete Newark Advocate article.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Monday, January 12, 2009


Read Bill Husted's column every Monday in the Business Section of The Columbus Dispatch. I always learn something every Monday.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Chat with the Chamber: Groundhog For Breakfast?

Click above for more information on the 2009 Groundhog Breakfast to held on January 30, 2009.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Death: Boston Fire Department-Television Star


Boston Fire Lt. Kevin Kelley of Ladder Co.26 was killed in the Line of Duty in an apparatus crash involving Ladder 26. Ladder 26 is one of 23 ladders in the BFD and 1 of 8 that are 13 years or older. It is a 1995 E-One, 110' rig. Reports are that it passed its last annual safety inspection in March 2008 and an aerial inspection in September 2008. A panel will be investigating to determine how this tragedy could happen.The apparatus went out of control on a steep side street yesterday went across four lanes of traffic, then through a gate and smashed into a high-rise building, killing a Lt Kelley, critically injuring another Firefighter as well as causing minor injury to the 2 FF's in the rear.

LT. KEVIN KELLEY WAS WELL KNOWN AS A HERO FIRE OFFICER....AND TV STAR:Lt. Kelley, with 30 years on BFD was married and a Dad of 3 daughters. He was a devoted family man and a reality television star (see above). Boston Firefighters Local 718 VP Richard Paris describes Lt. Kelley as a "great firefighter" and a "great father....he loved taking trips with his family....Kevin always enjoyed coming in to do his job and then going home - but not today," said Paris, who came on the job with Kelley 30 years ago. "He's not going home."The TV Show "Firehouse USA: Boston," prominently featured Lt. Kelley...and he played a "starring" role as seen in the video clips above.

Lt Kelley was a second-generation firefighter and one of the longest-serving firefighters in BFD...he was promoted to lieutenant in 1988. In 1997, he and other FF's received the Commissioner's Unit Citation for rescuing several adults and children from a burning building, including some rescued by ladder from balconies.

Coctails by the Fire

The Works in Downtown Newark will hold their fourth Cocktails by the Fire on February 7, 2009. Call 740-349-9277 to make your reservation today for this annual great event.

Located in the Glass Studio on South First Street, you will walk around the museum and watch the expert glass artists perform their craft. Casual attire, heavy
hor d'oeuvres, chocolate dessert and coffee bar, plus this year's signature cocktail:

1 part Grey Goose vodka
1 part limoncello
1/2 part fresh lemon juice
1 part Martini & Rossi Prosecco
Don't forget if you are looking for something to do this winter with your spouse or family check out The Works, it worth the price of admission.

Thursday, January 8, 2009


Special thank you to Jim Lewis for passing this video on to me.


Kurt Harden has a January 7th post about how he expects his company to offer quality service and he only does business with companies that give quality service.

His comment "I run from bad service" is what caught my eye.

Read Kurt's posting at CULTURAL OFFERING.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009


Watching this video was the best eleven minutes I spent last night.


Thank you to Robin Flaherty for passing it along to me.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Owens Corning, Newark, Ohio

For several years we were blessed with an Owens Corning, Newark plant manager named Larry Harrington. One of Larry's first positions during the start of his career was in Newark and transferred back years latter as Plant Manager. During his second time here, I was Chairman of the Chamber of Commerce and Owens Corning was having a hostile take over attempt by another company.

Larry and his Human Resource manager Ron Celnar was such a help to me while we had a community in turmoil. We met many times during the two month period, planning, working out details of a major layoff etc.

Read Lawrence Harrington's complete obituary here.

The one saying Larry had that I still use to this day: "I only play golf during the week, because it is too much like work to play golf on the weekends"

Friday, January 2, 2009




Pride and passion for your profession brings great customer service. Anna of Anna's Cuban Cafe reminded me of how to be successful, good customer service makes people talk about your business and brings you new business.

Anna was excellent at customer service: I would ask for coffee at 6am (she apologized to me one morning because she opened ten minutes late), she would then ask if I wanted American or Cuban coffee. Once I said Cuban, she would ask if I wanted milk or half & half. Once I would say no thank you, she would suggest a slice of the banana nut bread made by her daughter-in-law. I watched as she would take the orders, fix the order and yell out that it was ready. She always smiled and tried to be more than helpful.

All day long, there would be a line at her restaurant, if a table and chair was not available, people would stand and eat. Constantly she would ask people while doing her chores if everything was okay. Her customer service made people come back to her small diner, but also made her customers tell others. I know during my short stay, I told several people about Anna and her diner. My only hope is that I brought her some new business and the same referred folks will bring her additional new business, as far as I am concerned this is why you offer good customer service.

Within our community we have several companies that give excellent customer service and then there are the companies that do not exhibit any customer service. The second group need to go to Anna's school and watch for or a day or two.

My goal for the New Year, 50% of my transactions for 2009 are to be obtained threw new clients, the same goal I hope for Anna has with Anna's Cuban Cafe.