Stair Climbing At The Cincinnatian

IMG_3859I’m in Cincinnati for meetings, staying at the Cincinnatian.  It’s a fine hotel, and I particularly like the fact that it has a fine staircase.

I hate the soulless modern hotels where the staircases are kept behind closed doors at the end of hallways, where you wonder whether you’re locking yourself in the stairwell if you try to get some exercise rather than using the elevator.  The Cincinnatian, to my delight, has a broad, beautiful, public staircase that it keeps out in the open, ready for use by those of us who like to stretch our legs now and then.

If more hotels and public places had grand staircases, maybe more people would use them and we would have less morbid obesity in this pulpy, bloated, XXXL country of ours.

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A Plague Of Disillusionment

Fellow blogger Elroy Jones has a piece out today about being deceived — in this case, by President Obama.  She voted for him twice, and she’s feeling bamboozled.

I wonder how many other supporters of President Obama are feeling a similar, profound disillusionment.  I know many people — including members of my immediate family — voted for the President with great excitement because they expected a lot from him.  In fact, they expected a President who would realize dramatic change, turn around the world’s perception of our country, and achieve historic greatness.  In my view, at least, that hasn’t happened.

What must be even more galling is that many of the people who voted for President Obama did so largely because they wanted to reverse course from the Bush years.  That hasn’t happened, either.  More and more, it has developed that President Obama has adhered to the security policies established by the Bush Administration and, in some cases, expanded and amplified them.

When people criticize actions like the NSA’s routine collection of reams of data about ordinary Americans, and the Obama Administration’s defense is that the programs were begun under the Bush Administration, how is that received by Obama voters who hoped for change?  Do they suddenly develop a deeper respect for the policies of President George W. Bush, or do they scratch their heads and wonder why they voted for a guy who promised so much and seems to have delivered so little?

In Grand Scale

IMG_3814The Greek scholar Proclus is reputed to have said that “the circle is the first, the simplest and most perfect form.”  I think he’s right.  There is no doubt that circles are an extremely pleasing shape to the eye.

So when I saw this grand, circular scale at the loading dock adjacent to the Dinin’ Hall eating area — a scale that boldly promises to give “honest weight” while weighing items that tip the scales at up to 2000 pounds — I had to take a picture.  The circle takes what would have been a humdrum piece of machinery and turns it into a work of industrial art.

The Standing Sunday Morning Golf Date

It’s summer, it’s Sunday morning, and I’m in Columbus.  That means I’ve got a standing engagement at the golf course with my Sunday morning group.

IMG_3855The same three guys have been playing golf at the same course for years now.  I’m not sure how many times we’ve played or for how long, but it’s been so often that it feels jarring when another person joins our trio to make it into a foursome.  The newbies don’t know where to stand on the tee, or they talk too much, or they play slow.  Our little group walks and plays “ready golf,” where everyone goes straight to their ball, gets set, and hits their shot when the way ahead is clear.  To our way of thinking, bad golf can happen to anyone from time to time, but slow golf is inexcusable.

I’m the worst golfer in our group.  That used to bother me, but it doesn’t anymore.  I don’t practice like I should or work on my game, and I don’t play as much as I would like, either.  When you don’t make the effort to try to get better, how can you expect to improve?  But I do like those calm Sunday mornings, like today, when the air is cool and the course is quiet and the grass has that fresh smell and our merry band works our way around the familiar links, talking about nothing in particular.