We Have Issues Comic Shop 1

Reviewer: William Bilancio

Website

Address:

Phone:

 

Hours:

  • Monday: Closed
  • Tuesday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Wednesday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Thursday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Friday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Saturday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Sunday: Closed

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Photo by: Pat McChesney

When moving to the Corning, New York area I thought the closest comic book stores were in Elmira and Ithaca, but I seem to have been mistaken; there is one in Painted Post off of Route I-86 at exit 43. There stands a big brick building that they tell me use to be the Ames department store, but that has been long gone since the late 90’s early 2000’s. It’s now called the “Victory Highway Galleria of Shops”. Tucked in this Galleria of shops is a small and when I say small I mean a small shop that is a gem of a comic store called We Have Issues Comics. I am always dubious of comic stores in this kind of environment, they are usually run by an old comic book store owner who is trying to get out of the business and only has the back issues he couldn’t sell in his original store but I was pleasantly surprised with the We Have Issues shop.

When I walked into the shop Pat McChesney, the owner came up and welcomed me to his store and politely asked if I was buying or if I just was looking. I, unfortunately, had to tell him that I was only looking today, and he was fine about that and let me know it wasn’t a problem. While flipping through the books, I broke the conversational ice with my usual question for all the comic book shop owners when I first meet them “how is business going?”. He was frank and honest and told me business was good. We got to talking about comics and he knows his stuff, not just the current iteration of comics today but about the older comics of yesteryear.

One of the things on my mental checklist that I look for when I go to new stores is the owner. He is the face of the store and he makes the store a good one just as much as the inventory he has for sale. If the owner is passionate about his product and wants to succeed the store will succeed if he isn’t then the store will fail. The more the owner puts himself into the shop the more people will want to come back. Mr. McChesney is doing just that, putting himself and his passion for comic books into this store. He is one of the reasons I will go back.

The second thing on my list that makes me like or not like a store is appearance and layout of the store. When I walked into We Have Issues I was happy to find a clean and well-kept space. There was no boxes or clutter around on the floor, or a lot of non-comics merchandise for sale either.  The store is well lighted and not dingy, and it’s a comic store a parent wouldn’t have any problem letting their kids go to get comics and to look around. To me We Have Issues is the perfect example of the minimalist comic book store; due to the space constraints, it doesn’t have the mainstay selection of long boxes of back issues on display which is a refreshing thing for me, because I end up spending my whole time digging through them looking for a new find for my collection instead of checking out the store and talking with the owner or employees if they have time.

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Photo By: Pat McChesney

Third on my list is how diversified is his inventory? I was impressed with We Have Issues, it has most of the big names in comics on the shelf and some nice old ones as well. I didn’t see any of the weird comics I usually get, but he said he will order what I wanted. Saying that he does have pull lists for his customers. On an aside if you are so inclined to start a pull list at any comic store, not just We Have Issue please go pick them up on a regular basis, that’s money out of the store owners pocket when they just sit there.

A few things that I have an issue with is that a lot of his “current” back issues were already bagged and boarded, I like to be able to check out the art and to read the first page or so to really see if I want to buy the comic, especially comic characters that I have never read before. I am also a fan of a place to sit and check out my purchases and be able to talk with the other customers or employees catching up on the comic book world dirt which We Have Issues doesn’t have, but I understand with such a little space. Neither of these is a deal-breaker that would keep me from going back.

After 20 minutes hanging out and checking out the store and the owner I think We Have Issues has great possibility of maturing, growing and becoming my go to store while I am living in this area since it’s got a great owner, it’s clean and it’s right down the street from the house and work as long as I can get the “special” comic series that I like I am there. Remember new comic’s come in on Wednesday. Hope to see you all at We Have Issues.


Christmas List 2016

 

As Christmas and the holidays approached us fast I have been asked by my cousin Ira Bilancio to bring back a tradition I started back in the early 2000’s when I started this “journal” my Christmas wish list of what I would like for Christmas of course.

Now in years past I have put in some big-ticket items on this list, I still can’t believe that no one got me the kitchen cabinets I asked for back in 2006, but the lists always came in handy when people wanted to know what I wanted, one year I got most of the list from friends and family.

So here is my list for Christmas 2016 in no particular order enjoy the list and if you have any suggestions of any other cool stuff leave them in the comments.

Electronics

Mpow Seashell Bluetooth 4.1 Running Sports Headphones with MicrophoneAmazon.com – $28.97

Excellent Noise Cancellation : The 6th generation CVC technology reduces outside noises and enables clearer sound from microphone.
Bluetooth 4.1 & aptX : Bluetooth 4.1 chip with aptX technology, Mpow Seashell offers you great listening experience.
IPX4 Waterproof Level : The certified IPX4 ensures that Mpow Seashell can protect itself from any drop or splash of water. Perfect for sports!
Great Battery Performance : The built-in battery of Mpow Seashell allows up to 7-hour playing/talking time and 185-hour standby.
Wide Compatibility : According to the test, Mpow Seashell is compatible with most Bluetooth-enabled smart phones.

Amazon Fire TV | Streaming Media PlayerAmazon.com – $89.99

Amazon Fire TV is a tiny box you connect to your HDTV. It’s the easiest way to enjoy over 250,000 TV episodes and movies on Netflix, Amazon Instant Video, and HBO NOW, plus games, music, and more.

JBL LSR305 Professional Studio Monitor (PACK OF 2) – Amazon.com – $249.99

The LSR305, part of JBL’s 3 Series studio monitor, is a 5\” powered studio monitor delivering professional performance at an affordable price points. 3 Series Powered Studio Monitor are first to incorporate JBL’s exciting new technology, the Image Control Waveguide. In conjunction with 3 Series high-performance transducers and system components, the Image Control Waveguide lets you hear detail and depth in recordings as you’ve never heard before. The LSR305’s 5\” long-throw woofer and its 1\” damped woven composite Neodymium tweeter are designed from the ground up to reproduce the powerful transients and micro dynamics of your mix. These drivers deliver impressive deep bass and smooth high frequency response beyond the range of human hearing.

Steinberg UR242 4-Channel USB InterfaceAmazon.com – $168.29

Be ready to record music in studio quality on your notebook or iPad with the UR242. With outstanding audio and build quality for its price class, the UR242 combines choice components with advanced onboard DSP-powered FX to offer solutions for a huge range of mobile production scenarios

Movies

Star Wars: The Complete Saga (Episodes I-VI) [Blu-ray] Amazon.com – $88.49

Experience the spectacular adventure of STAR WARS The Complete Saga in a way only Blu-ray™ can deliver. This incredible collection unites all six movies in stunning high definition with the purest digital sound in the galaxy. With more than 40 hours of thrilling special features including three bonus discs, you can journey deep into the Star Wars universe. Feel the Force of STAR WARS The Complete Saga on Blu-ray!

The Fish That Saved Pittsburgh Amazon.com – $13.45

The Dr. will see you now. Basketball’s Dr. J – Julius Erving – operates on the competition in this hoop-it-up disco-era fantasy about a team on a winning streak when it signs up motley players born under the zodiac’s fish sign of Pisces.

With the Dr. in the house, trademark cloud-walking, net-shredding slam dunks are plentiful. More hoops excitement follows as the Harlem Globetrotters’ Meadowlark Lemon handles the rock as if he had more arms than an octopus and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar shows his winning style as well. Off the court, Flip Wilson is a beleaguered coach and Jonathan Winters plays the dual roles of an ill-natured mogul and a sweet-natured nitwit. The world isn’t round in The Fish That Saved Pittsburgh. It’s roundball. Fish fever – hook it!

Cooking/Kitchen

Zweissen Ceramica 12″ Professional Grade Ceramic Rod Knife Sharpener with Stainless Steel Core – Amazon.com – $34.98

ZWEISSEN is all about precision professional quality kitchen tools designed for home use and delivered at great value. The ZWEISSEN Ceramica is a high-tech take on the traditional stainless-steel rod sharpener, using the finest abrasives available to sharpen and re-align blades to their maximum potential. The shaft is coated with 1000 grit ceramic, which has an extra-fine texture and high hardness rating- these qualities make the Ceramica perfect for blades that feature a fine edge (such as German or Asian knives).

Minosharp 3 Sharpener Black/RedAmazon.com – $48.00

MinoSharp 550/BR Sharpens the face of the blade, fast, safe and simple. Features: -Comes in black and red. -Includes a Coarse Blue, Medium Brown and Fine Yellow Ceramic Wheel. -Recommended for Global Knives and most other knife brands.

Kettlepizza Pro 22 Kit – Outdoor Pizza Oven Kit for 22.5 Inch Kettle Grills. Includes Prograte, Tombstone & Aluminum Pro PeelAmazon.com – $299.95

The KPPK-22 is the top of the line KettlePizza kit madeade for hardcore KettlePizza users. This kit offers the basic KettlePizza unit plus the popular ProGrate/Tombstone Combo. This kit has our Tombstone which is stone is 15.7 inch x 14.5 inch with a rounded edge. Since it is thicker, it retains more heat and makes pizza placement and removal easier. This combination allows higher dome temperatures for quicker bakes and side access openings for easier refueling. This kit includes a FREE Aluminum Pro Pizza peel.

Note: This product only works with 22.5 inch kettles. Included with the KettlePizza Pro 22 kit are: – one 304 stainless steel pizza oven sleeve for 22.5 inch kettles – two wood handles with stainless steel standoffs – one hi-temp thermometer – one 14″ pizza pan – stainless steel hardware – one 22.5″ stainless steel ProGrate that allows refueling without removal of KettlePizza insert – one 5/8″ Tombstone shaped pizza stone. Larger and thicker for better heat retention and easier pizza placement – one firebox which allows higher temperatures within cooking chamber – one aluminum pro pizza peel with hanging S clip (INCLUDED FREE) Some basic assembly is required (no tools needed). The product is proudly Made in USA and has patents pending.

Clothes

SERBAGS Military Style Messenger BagAmazon.com – $69.99

This Military style canvas & leather messenger bag, good for up to 15″ laptop.
Dual leather straps with adjustment buckles, antique finish brass metal buckles
2 large front pockets, 2 side pockets with strap.
DIMENSIONS: 15″(L) x 12.50″(H) x 4.20″(D)

Gildan Men’s Heavy Cotton 10 PackAmazon.com – $25.63

You might ask, “but William why?”  Because I don’t always want to wear a t-shirt with something written on it.

Gildan Heavy Weight T-shirts, 10 pack. 100% preshrunk cotton, seamless rib at neck, taped shoulder-to-shoulder, double-needle stitching throughout.

Levi’s Men’s The Trucker Jacket Amazon.com – $69.99

Not Much of an explanation needed!

Geek and Fun Stuff

Subscription to LOOTCRATE DX lootcrate.com – 1 month $44.99, 3 Months $43.99/month, 6 months $42.99/month, 1 year $563.88

A curated collection of awesome items from the best pop culture franchises delivered to your door every month.

  • 4-6 Items for the Pop Culture Connoisseur
  • $100+ of Retail Value
  • Lifestyle Gear, Premium Apparel and Exclusive Collectibles

Dungeon Master’s Guide (D&D Core Rulebook)Amazon.com – $27.94

Everything a Dungeon Master needs to weave legendary stories for the world’s greatest roleplaying game

The Dungeon Master’s Guide provides the inspiration and the guidance you need to spark your imagination and create worlds of adventure for your players to explore and enjoy.

Inside you’ll find world-building tools, tips and tricks for creating memorable dungeons and adventures, optional game rules, hundreds of classic D&D magic items, and much more!

Player’s Handbook (Dungeons & Dragons)Amazon.com – $29.74

Everything a player needs to create heroic characters for the world’s greatest roleplaying game

The Player’s Handbook® is the essential reference for every Dungeons & Dragons® roleplayer. It contains rules for character creation and advancement, backgrounds and skills, exploration and combat, equipment, spells, and much more.

Use this book to create exciting characters from among the most iconic D&D® races and classes.

Dungeons & Dragons immerses you in a world of adventure. Explore ancient ruins and deadly dungeons. Battle monsters while searching for legendary treasures. Gain experience and power as you trek across uncharted lands with your companions.

The world needs heroes. Will you answer the call?

Monster Manual (D&D Core Rulebook)Amazon.com – $29.99

A menagerie of deadly monsters for the world’s greatest roleplaying game

The Monster Manual presents a horde of classic Dungeons & Dragons creatures, including dragons, giants, mind flayers, and beholders–a monstrous feast for Dungeon Masters ready to challenge their players and populate their adventures.

The monsters contained herein are culled from the D&D game’s illustrious history, with easy-to-use game statistics and thrilling stories to feed your imagination.

The leader in providing contemporary fantasy entertainment, Dungeons & Dragons is the wellspring for the entire modern game industry, digital as well as analog. This newest edition draws from every prior edition to create a universally compelling play experience, and exemplifies the true spirit of a game that holds captive the hearts and minds of millions of players worldwide.


The Bilancio Purple Turkey 1

A lot of people on Facebook have asked what a purple turkey is. It’s a turkey that marinades in wine for 5 to 7 days before cooking. So when it comes out of the marinade it’s purple.

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So you all can enjoy a great tasting turkey here is the recipe for the marinade for a 12-pound turkey and instructions:

3 cups dry red wine
2 ½ cups chopped onion
2 cloves of garlic minced
5 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 bay leaf

For a good dry red wine to use I recommend a good jug wine. I use Carlo Rossi Paisano wine, but lately I have also used Charles Shaw Chardonnay from Trader Joe’s.

If your turkey is larger than 12 pounds add more wine and garlic and bay leaves and if your turkey is defrosted it won‘t have to marinate the full 7 days, but I usually just put it in frozen and let it defrost in the bowl as it marinades.

Put the turkey breast down into a clean unscented garbage bag and then put bag and turkey in a big bowl. Pour all the ingredients into the bag and tie bag as tight and close to the bird less air in the bag the better. Every 24 hours turn the turkey so it marinades evenly. When you are ready to cook the turkey remove it from the marinade and bag, then drain out the turkey and pat it dry inside and out, then put in a roster pan and let it sit and warm up about 30 min before roasting it.

Remember to remove the pack of giblets and turkey neck before cooking. Since I put the turkey in the marinade frozen I let them all marinate as well and then use them for the gravy with the drippings from the turkey giving it a great taste.

Throw out the marinade and bag since it’s had raw poultry in it and is contaminated now and shouldn’t be used for anything else.

Cook the turkey till it has an internal temperature of 163 degrees. I usually pull it out when it’s between 158 to 160 since it will keep cooking while it rests and will get to the internal temp of 163, this way it won’t over cook and get a little dry. When the turkey is taken out of the oven it will be a dark golden brown and the meat will be moist and tasty. Let the turkey rest for 15 to 20 minutes before carving.


And you may ask yourself, well How did we get here? 1

To all my Facebook and online family and friends,

Today I break my political silence I have put on myself about talking about politics for just a short moment.

Yesterday the United States went to the polls and told the Government that we wanted changes. For those of you who are on the winning side congratulations, to those who lost, there is another chance in four years for you to institute another change.

Now I want to lay some ground rules for “today” the day after election day for those who voted for the winner; you get your chance to celebrate and wave your flag of victory till Sunday night 11:59 PM EST and I will also give you inauguration day to wave that flag, but for the next four years, no more bitching about the government and the things that happen or the bills and laws that don’t get passed or about the ones that do or on how the other side reacts to everything your side try’s to do, this is your winner and your win so you have to live with the consequences of your vote.

For those friends that picked the candidates that lost, you to have till Sunday night 11:59pm EST as well, to complain about the winning side or say you are moving to another country and to bitch and moan about the election, but after that it’s the time to start thinking about the future and how you are going to live in it for the next four years.

But the biggest thing you can all do is not get on Social Media and bitch and moan and put down the winning side and the winners, be a group of people that institute change in a peaceful and thoughtful way. Live up to that liberal label that you have been painted with for the past four years and especially the last year of this election cycle. Start at the local level right now! Get involved in the way your city, town, state is run. Help a campaign for a candidate that you think is worthy and will help your community for the better, then in two and half years help your side find a candidate that will be a good choice for the White House that will not only brining in the changes that you would like to see instituted but that will unite the country and bring bi-partisanship to the government and get things done without the fighting and all the crap that has been happening for the past sixteen years in our national government.

But everybody please stop the back stabbing, the name calling and the insulting of each other, we all live in the same country and we are all Americans and we are all friends and family, with different feelings and ideas and back grounds, but to survive in the future we have created, whether it’s a Zombie Apocalypse or a Financial Down turn or something else catastrophic that falls upon us as a nation; we need to work at working together to get the United States united as one nation and one people. Also stopping the hate and bigotry that has come into our lives in the past year and we need to remember that this country was founded and built by immigrants that came over from oppressed societies to help build a nation that wouldn’t oppress those that live here whether they were born here or came from another country or have a different religion or different ideas then our own. This is what had made America a great country the country of the free and the brave.

I am sure this post will get a few people upset and you know what I don’t care! I have kept quiet online about all politics and suffered through all the hate talk and all your opinions of our current President and those who were running on either side, so deal with this post and understand that this will probably be the last political post I do for a while.

So again congratulations to those on the “winning” side and to those who weren’t start now to be on it the next time.


New project started for the eyes

Picture of the day, a 365 day project…what ever you call it I am going to make a go at it. Starting today October 1st 2016 this is the first picture of the next 365 days.  Check out 365.bilancio.org for my new photo project.

I am going to do a theme for the first month – signs and stickers of Market Street.   Each day a new image will be uploaded with a small something. Every image will be different; it may have been shot on the day or may have been picked out from my archives, but there will be a new picture a day for the next 365 days.

I hope you enjoy the pictures. If you have an idea for a “theme” send me a private message and let me know I am always looking for new photo ideas….please keep it clean.

I have been taking photographs since grade school, but not full time in the past few years. I have picked up the DSLR camera on and off and since the cell phone cameras have gotten better and better over the years the photos we are producing have gotten better.

Enjoy the photos and let me know what you think…..


A winning burger at an old-school diner/bar and grill – R&M Restaurant & Bar

Photo by: William Bilancio

Photo by: William Bilancio

Website


Address:

Phone:

Hours:

    Last weekend I went out with Marty to check out the Ferraris being shown on Market Street in the Gaffer District in Corning. As we were passing the famous R & M Restaurant, Marty saw they were open on a Saturday night and TOLD me that is where we were going to have dinner.I have been trying to get in to the R & M since I have been back in the area, but haven’t had the time or they have been closed. Many people have told me how great the burgers are there and I being a hamburger snob knew I was going to have to try them out.

    You walk in to the R&M, which is just a medium space with about 10 tables and a bar and a small kitchen in the back; BAM the aroma of good cooked food from the kitchen hits your nose and your mouth starts to water and you realize this is a place that serves a great meal. There were a few tables taken, so Marty and I just grabbed a seat and waited. I noticed that there wasn’t any wait staff or bar tender around. The couple at the next table leaned over and handed us their menus and let us know they were done. The menu as you can see is pretty straightforward and simple.

    We waited a bit and then a big bear of a man Bob Pierri the owner

    Photo by: Don Cazentre | dcazentre@syracuse.com

    Owner of the R&M Bob Pierri. Photo by:
    Don Cazentre | dcazentre@syracuse.com

    came out to take our orders. I felt bad for him; he told us that he had let the waitress go around 4:30 since it wasn’t busy at all. By the time we rolled in it was about 8pm two hours after his normal closing time for a Saturday, and he was in the kitchen making pancakes and burgers as well as taking orders and making drinks. But he was friendly and gracious and was doing great customer service. Marty dropped her fork and he was there in a flash with a new one.

    R&M is known for their burgers and have won numerous awards for their burgers. This year R&M took the top prize as Judges’ Choice for burger in the Best Burger in Upstate New York contest with their “Big House Burger”.

    Photo by: William Bilancio

    Photo by: William Bilancio

    Marty and I both had the quarter pound Cheeseburger with a side of fries. It took a while to get our food, but it was worth the wait. As I bit into the burger it just melted in my mouth and had a great flavor. The toppings lettuce, tomato and onions (I added mustard, which took the flavor to another level), were just right without them taking away from the flavor of the meat which was cooked to perfection of a medium burger. The bun the burger rested between was light and airy and had a great buttery taste and soaked up the juice from the burger but didn’t fall apart like a lot of other buns at other places.

    The fries were hot and crispy and cooked just right and they stayed crispy even as they got cooler. I love a good order of fries and right now these are at the top of my favorite.

    As a person who is always looking for a great burger, I think for now this burger is the best burger in the Corning area. I will be going back to try out some of the other things on the menu and definitely going to try the “Big House Burger”. I want to try to the Rigatoni and the Fish Fry. So if you were looking for a great meal I would go check out the R&M Restaurant.


    A question that made me do a double take!

    So an interesting thing happened to me at Soulful Cup when I went into get my morning large cup of Jamaican Me Crazy, I asked the Barista my usual “how are you doing and ready for the weekend” question, she gave me her answer and then turned and asked me “what radio stations I had worked for”. One of my coffee group had mentioned to her that I had worked in radio; it took me by surprise, because not many people below the age of 40 care or want to hear about it.

    But it got me thinking of the kind of show I would love to do again. It would of course be based off of the Freeform format of the late 1960’s and 70’s.  The last true disc jockey that still does a freeform show, but on satellite radio is Jim Lad and his show is a great one.

    The show would be 4 hours a night 5 days a week and it would have interviews and of course great music (Rock, Country, Folk, Jazz, etc.) from bands of yesterday and today…request welcome. I think for a small/medium market radio station this would be a great way to educate their “young” to 40 some things about music.  I know I write this article every few years but the theme and ideas for the show grows in my head and I have to get it put down so I remember and maybe a program manager with some guts will read this and get in touch to talk about a job.

    I consider myself a historian of radio and I think it’s time for the small/medium sized radio stations to start swinging back to the start of FM radio, throw out the Automation machine, hire some good Disc Jockeys and some high school/collage kids to learn from the “old timers” you just hired so they can become the future of real radio.   There is so much good music and bands out in the world that aren’t getting air time because they don’t have a big music contract or they don’t play the current top 40 sound.  I am a big fan of the Blues Brothers and Ellwood Blues said it best back in 1978 when the album “Briefcase Full of Blues” (BTW this album appeared on my albums that influenced my life list) was released:

    You know, so much of the music we hear today is all pre-programmed electronic disco; we never get a chance to hear master blues men practicing their craft anymore. By the year 2006, the music known today as the blues will exist only in the classical records department of your local library.

    -Ellwood Blues (Dan Aykroyd)

    And you know what 2006 has come and gone and that quote still holds true today, the music of 60’s through the 80’s really only exists in your local library and in people’s music listening device, it’s not getting played on the radio so that the youth of today can hear that there is music out there that isn’t rap or what I call the bubble gum music of top 40.  I use to love walking by my daughters door and hearing some classic rock coming through the door.

    So if you’re a radio program director or you know a radio program director (drop them the link to this story) looking for a good show, from a disc jockey with a great voice, a great knowledge of music genres (except Classical Music) and radio drop me a line I would love to talk and see what we can do. This is a great way to educate your audience and community.


    So Long, and Thanks for All the Tomato Pies

    I mentioned in a post last week that I have decided to move to Corning in the Southern Tier of New York.

    When I moved back to New Jersey in the late summer of 1991 to the open arms of my father’s family that I had left back in 1983 when we moved to Bath, NY, I considered the move a rebirth. Now after 26 years and the last few which were a tumultuous time for me, I feel this move back to the Bath area is me rising from the ashes of my old life and with that rising I need to believe in myself and love myself to become the new person I want to become.

    I will miss a ton of the people I have made my friends and done things with throughout my time in New Jersey. The parties we had in the back yard on all the major summer holidays are something that I will never forget. The get together at Panera, Uno’s and other great places. The one friend that I spent the most time with and who came to my aid when the basement flooded almost every time it did, I will miss you the most John. John Martinetti was always there when I asked for help and you were always willing to go out and have a good time at a moments notice. I will miss you dude.

    As I am getting settled in my new life I look back at the things I have achieved while I was in New Jersey, I helped LUG/IP become a non-profit group, I started the System Administrator Group – LOPSA-NJ and put together the East Coast System Administrator Conference, set up the Nextdoor for Colonial Heights Civic Association and a few things I am sure I forgot about.

    The biggest things I will miss from New Jersey are all the great places to eat Chinese & Italian foods, burgers (not fast food burgers) and the other types of food I love to eat. Since I have been in Corning I have been struggling to find a good Chinese restaurant that has good food, low prices and delivers. In New Jersey I couldn’t swing a dead cat without hitting a good non-chain Chinese restaurant that fit the above criteria’s. So far I have found so so Chinese, but I am still looking and I will find it.

    But the one thing I am missing the most is a Trenton style tomato pie.

    In Trenton, the “tomato pie” is king, a thin-crust, chewy round pizza whose most defining characteristic is the unusual placement of the tomato sauce: it’s on top.

    Malcolm Bedell – FromAway.com

    trenton-tomato-pie

    Trenton Tomato Pie – From Away

    This was the food I missed the most when I first came to New York in ’83 now it is again. I will find a pizza joint that will make a good tomato pie or teach one to make a great tomato pie or I will have to get that pizza oven attachment for my Weber Charcoal grill.

    This isn’t really the final goodbye my friends and family in New Jersey, it’s just a break from me, and I hope to see you soon in New Jersey and I want you to know my door is always open if you want to come to Corning (I don’t have a room you can stay in, but there is a bunch of nice places to stay in the area) and help me find that great Chinese restaurant or a great tasting tomato pie, or we can also go on a few vineyards tours or brewery tours or just go out to the lake and have a good time.

    So in closing to the state of New Jersey and my friends I say:

    So Long, and Thanks for All the Tomato Pies


    Keep it local and help locally 1

    Market Street from the Wegmans’ parking lot (yes I am to cheap to pay for parking) to the Soulful Cup coffee shop to drink coffee, look for a job, talk with the locals and regulars and watch them interact with each other.

    On my way down the street I pass the Corning Art & Frame shop that has some great custom guitars in the front window, but what caught my attention so many times are the stickers that the owner (I am guessing the owner) has put on the door. Of course the Grateful Dead, Jerry Garcia and Gov’t Mule were the first stickers that caught my eye. But the one that made me stop and take a pictureytnd of the door was the “Your Turntable’s Not Dead” sticker from Thirdman Records. I am very big on vinyl records and the use of turntables so anything stating that says turntables is alive and well I will support it.

    It’s the look and the feel of that door that makes you know that we are in a small town/city and a local resident owns the business. When was the last time you saw stickers like this on the door of a chain or box store. I have never been in the store because I am not in the need of art or frames, but if I need them I would go to this store before going to a chain store because of the music and technology he supports and how the store is decorated. People need to remember that the money spent in a locally owned store comes back to the community faster than any money spent in the chain stores.

    When I go to new areas I like to go to the down town area and frequent the local stores and see what I can buy, of course I aim for the local comic book, antique’s or record stores as well as used book stores and of course the local restaurants and bars where I usually find great food and beer selections. If I am going to be in the area for a while like I will be in Corning I start to make friends with local owners because they are dedicated to the area and making the town and area they are in a better place. I try to help out if they are in need of technical help or if I can give them advice from my travels in the tri-state area, but the biggest help I give them is buying and supporting their place of business.

    “I don’t believe there’s any problem in this country, no matter how tough it is, that Americans, when they roll up their sleeves, can’t completely ignore.”

    ― George CarlinBrain Droppings

    I feel that no one should ignore problems in their area and they shouldn’t ignore the local businesses and should work with their local government and be part of the solution to make their community better. Reminder if you don’t vote in local or national elections you have no right to complain about what is going on in your community or nationally.


    I am here and I am doing ok 1

    I have been busy looking for a job and also made the decision to move back to the Corning, NY area to be closer to my parents and Marty and to get out of NJ for a while. Since I have been back I have spent a lot of time sitting in the Soulful Cup on Market Street looking for the elusive new job as well as meeting and talking to new people and making new friends of these people.

    I have gotten that elusive job with Corning Inc. in the Incident Management Department for the IT Department. I start the day after the 4th of July…so that would be the 5th I am excited but nervous like I am about starting any new job. This job is going to be a lot like doing the Big Red Button calls we did at Peak Hosting, but with bigger issues on a higher level. I am sure I will rock it and have fun with a new team and a new company. The one downside of this job is the 24/7 on call stuff, since it gets hard to get a good life/work balance with the threat of the phone going off, but like Peak I will work it out.

    I have also been doing a lot more cooking in the past few weeks since Marty doesn’t cook much and we don’t have a ton of money to go out and get take out, but we do go out once a week just to have a night out together. I have been cooking a lot of veggies and making salads that is a little different for me, since the last audience I cooked for was anti vegetable. I have also been working the grill like crazy cooking up steaks and burgers and of course pork chops. I am going to be firing up the smoker soon (yes I brought the smoker and all the charcoal grills with me to Corning) to make a purple turkey and of course some ribs and I am sure some other great food on it and the other grills.

    My dad’s sisters Clora and Bea and his brother Fran came to visit for a few days this with my mom and dad to help out in the flower beds and a few other specialty things since mom is getting her butt kicked by the chemo, so I hung out with them and of coursed cooked up some great food with and for them. I made a blistered green bean dish with an olive oil, garlic and lime sauce (I didn’t follow the recipe, but used it as a map sketched on a cocktail napkin) that was out of this world and I kicked out a great southern unsweetened cornbread (sugar has no place in corn bread) that was one of the best I have made in a long time and of course Marty was very excited and filled by all this great food that I made and of course the food my dad and mom made and meeting my uncle Fran for the first time. They of course hit it off and I was glad she was able to meet him outside of the La Vigna picnic setting so they had some time to talk without Fran getting distracted by all the rest of the family.

    I am hoping to be writing a little more than I have been. It’s tough sometimes for me to come up with ideas and when I do to get them on the paper. My mom made an observation that it’s getting harder for people to write, since most people have their heads down looking at their phones or electronic devices. They aren’t taking in what’s going on around them and building experiences to write about. I actually agree with her and I have been observing how people are in the world around me and have realized that I am guilty of having my head stuck “in” my phone and not paying attention to those things going on around me. So my goal the rest of the summer is to pay attention and take in what is going on around me and try to get more down on the “paper” and stop worrying about what’s going on online when I am out and about.