10 Things You Need To Know About Columbus

7 Jun

Recently for an internal work project, I was asked to write “10 things you need to know about Columbus.” I didn’t mean for this to be a blog post, but I really liked the way the list turned out – so I decided to share it with you!

This is in no way the end-all, be-all list of Columbus. In fact, these are just my opinions on some of the reasons why I think the city is awesome. I also have to give a gigantic shout-out to writehuman.com for their amazing infographic, which totally inspired this list.

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1. Columbus is f*cking awesome. Yeah, we know what you all say about us, but guess what – the joke’s on you. Everybody who visits expects a cow town but then falls in love with the city. Don’t take my word for it: 85% of visitors say they’re likely to visit Columbus again! And for the record, there aren’t cows here, so we certainly don’t know how to tip them.

2. Columbus has been called the “test market capital of the world.” We have just the right demographic mix that mirrors that of the United States. If something works in Columbus, it’ll pretty much work anywhere. Is there any wonder why Forbes, Washington Post, and countless other media outlets have recognized Cbus as a “secret foodie city?”

3. Columbus is headquarters to many big businesses, including: Abercrombie & Fitch, Bath & Body Works, Big Lots, DSW, Nationwide Insurance, Red Roof Inn, Wendy’s, Victoria’s Secret, White Castle, and many more. The most recent business taking roots here is Sbarro, which is relocating its headquarters from New York to the heart of the Midwest.

4. Columbus is the largest city in the US that doesn’t have some type of rail system. This is just one of the reasons why we’re thrilled to have car sharing, bike sharing, ride sharing, and a shiny new bus circulator that runs through the heart of the city – completely free for its passengers.

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5. Everyone’s an entrepreneur or has an entrepreneurial spirit. We love our scrappy start-ups and the burgeoning neighborhoods. The city rallies behind those who are succeeding and lends a helping hand to those who might be struggling.

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6. Speaking of entrepreneurs, two of the biggest in Columbus are women! James Beard award-winning author and president of Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams, Jeni Britton Bauer, has rightfully claimed her spot as creator of the best ice cream in the nation. And restaurateur extraordinaire, Elizabeth Lessner, has had a hand in creating nearly a dozen spots that are local faves and craves.

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7. Columbus loves local. No really, we do. From eating local (see #6), to drinking local (hello, award-winning Middle West Spirits), to shopping local in the Short North Arts District – we have some serious Ohio pride.

8. Did somebody say Pride? Columbus is home to one of the largest gay Pride parades in the country. We may be the capital city of a conservative state, but Columbus is the LGBT mecca of the Midwest. According to a study by the William Institute at UCLA Law School, Columbus’ approximately 50,250 gay citizens outnumber the percentage of gay citizens in Chicago.

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9. In 2013, Columbus was named one of the top 10 most intelligent cities in the world; in fact, we were the only US city that made the list.

10. Here are a few more fun facts that further prove how awesome Cbus is: #3 most fashion-forward city in the US, 15th largest city in the nation (right behind San Francisco), #4 in craft beer production, and #3 happiest city in the country.

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My Story

3 Feb

One of my very good friends from college sent me a message on Facebook the other day to let me know she was worried about my salvation. I’m guessing she finally figured out I was gay? I mean—I try so hard to keep that a secret and all. [laughter from the audience]

Let’s just say that my response wasn’t pretty. In fact, I’m ashamed of the way I blew up at her. But once I calmed the eff down, I really took the time to reflect why I had gotten so upset in the first place.

I don’t question my relationship status with God. We’re cool with each other.

But this was digging up old wounds that I let heal a long, long time ago, and I wasn’t prepared to relive that pain again. But with one little ‘ping,’ I was 23 again. I was scared and alone.

After that conversation with my friend, I came to the conclusion that I was never going to tell my story again… that I just couldn’t do that to myself anymore. Every time I recount my journey, I’m not letting the scars fade.

But then I thought about it for a few more days, and if I try to silence my story and never tell it again, no good will ever come from my pain. So as awful as it is to verbalize how being the gay son of a Southern Baptist preacher has affected me, I have to keep telling people about it… because when you know better, you do better. And maybe—just maybe—somebody’s heart will be changed.

This video isn’t my entire story—I’ll save that for another time. This video is just a brief snippet. One of my best friends works for a church, and he asked if I would be a part of a video series to talk about ‘my bad church experience.’

So that’s what we have here. A video. I’ll be honest—I haven’t watched it, nor do I plan on it. I just can’t. I have no idea what kind of editing was done and what parts of my story are left, but I hope my truth remains.

5 Things Parents Need to Stop Doing to Non-Parents

17 Jul

ImageI recently read an article on Huffington Post 5 Things Parents Need to Stop Saying to Non-Parents, and while I agree with some of the author’s sentiment, I honestly think the message came across rather bitchy. And when I think of my friends who have kids, my attitude generally isn’t bitchy at all.

So, in true Bmac fashion, I’ve decided to share my take on this topic – with one little modification in the title. Here are my 5 Things Parents Need to Stop Doing to Non-Parents.

1. Stop assuming I don’t want to hang out with your kids

It’s true – I don’t want kids. The thought of having them makes me want hide in the closet in the fetal position, rocking back and forth with my eyes closed. But that doesn’t mean I don’t like your kids.

Once upon a time, you were cool, and that’s why we became friends. So guess what? You’re probably raising some pretty cool kids too, and I’d like to be a part of that.

2. Quit thinking we need something fabulous to do just to hang out

I’m not sure if you feel guilty for having me over when there’s nothing  going on, or maybe you only associate me with awesome fun times (because you really should) that we had pre-kiddos. But whatever your hang-up is, get over it.

We don’t need to go to a bar and get wasted or go for a spur-of-the-moment road trip. I am happy to come to your house and watch you fold laundry. Hell, I might even help. I’d just like to see you.

3. Stop it already with thinking things need to be perfect

I don’t care that your house is a wreck. I don’t care that you’ve been wearing the same tank top for three days. I don’t care that your kids are gross and un-bathed.

None of that stuff matters. If you’re waiting for life to be perfect so we can hang out again, we might be in a nursing home together before that happens. Would it make you feel better if I wore the same tank top for three days too?

4. Stop asking me to babysit

Oh wait, you would never do that. I’m just checking if you’re paying attention.

5. Stop apologizing for your kids

I realize that they’re holy terrors who never stop eating, sleeping, pooping, peeing, puking, and all types of other gross shit. But you chose to have these two-legged monsters, and I think that’s great.

Here’s the deal, plain and simple: Your kids are important to you, and you’re important to me. So, your kids are are important to me too.

In the end, I hope my message is loud and clear to you parents about your non-parent friends – don’t automatically shut us out. But for the love of Gaga, get a babysitter sometimes and let us hear you say the F word again.

Bmac’s Official Review: Magic Mike

1 Jul


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Intro: I think I first heard about the concept of Magic MIke almost two years ago, and needless to say, I was ecstatic. And then I heard the film was really happening – I almost couldn’t stand the wait. Believe me, those last few weeks crept by, but then the big day finally came! It was time for the premier of Magic Mike. And the verdict? Did it live up to the hype? 

Expectations: Before I jump into the review, I think it’s important to talk about my expectations prior to seeing the film: I was expecting major cheese factor, lots of dancing. loads of laughter, large volumes of almost-naked screen time with the boys, and maybe - just maybe – a little peen.

Review: The first 30 minutes or so totally lived up to the hype. I mean, we saw Channing Tatum’s ass within the first 60 seconds. I thought, “This is the film I’ve been waiting for!” There were some great dances, old-school songs, glitz and glamour, and a pack of seriously hot men.

But then the film meandered somewhere else. Somewhere dark. It took a dive into the world of sex, drugs, and relationships. And this is not somewhere I was prepared for Magic Mike to take me. I just kept waiting for director Steven Soderbergh to take the journey back to the fun stuff, but alas, he never did.

If I had to sum up my feelings for the movie in one word, it would be unsatisfied. Here’s the deal: I love cheesy movies, and I love dark and twisty movies. I just need some commitment to one or the other. Sadly, for me, since Magic Mike tries to be a bit of both, I was left wanting more.

Loves: The dancing! Channing Tatum has the moves! And all the guys were funny and sexy and genuinely seemed to be having a great time in the film. Matthew McConaughey was another one of the stand-outs for me; he really took his character seriously and completely let his guard down.

Gripes: I know the movie is supposed to focus on the relationship between Channing Tatum’s and Alex Pettyfer’s characters, but there was literally zero character development for any of the other guys. And there was so little focus on the actual stripping. I could have used some more of the sexiness on-screen.

Verdict (for women): All the women came out of the theatre looking happy and smiling, and they all seemed to genuinely enjoy the film. I definitely think Magic Mike is made for the ladies. If you’re of the vagina-kind, I most definitely think you’ll enjoy this movie.

Verdict (for gay men): All the gay men coming out of the theatre also had the same look on their faces: frustrated. I mean, I see more nakedness from one episode of True Blood! If you’re looking for cheese factor, go re-watch Burlesque. And if you want something dark and twisty, try Shame with the intoxicatingly sexy Michael Fassbender. And if you’re looking for peen, just go watch some porn.

Top 5 Current Internet Annoyances

17 Jun

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I love using the innerwebs for reading. No, not reading books – I can’t stand fiction. I’m talking about reading blogs, news articles, tweets, lists, galleries – you get the idea.

But lately, I’ve been hyper annoyed with some Internet trends that try to sabotage my reading experiences. I normally try to put a positive spin on my posts, but let me just be honest – this list is simply about stuff that’s bugging the shit out of me.

Here we go:

1. Mobile ads: If you’re in mobile advertising, shame on you! These things block the content I’m trying to read, and sometimes they completely freeze my device! I’ve had enough of this nonsense, and I have stopped visiting some sites altogether because of their piss-poor use of mobile ads. I totally understand that peeps gotta make money, but get your shit together already!

2. Signing into an app: Have you ever tried to click on a Yahoo! article in Facebook? Yeah, it makes you sign in with an app first before it lets you read the article. Well, you know what, Yahoo!? F*** you. This is a PITA, and I don’t need your shitty article anyway.

3. Arrow navigation for a list: Sites like Mashable and EW love this mess. Instead of just putting the list in a, well, list, they make you click an arrow to get to every. single. item. This literally makes me scream, and I just leave the site. The only thing worse is when a site combines this technique with #4…

4. Losing my place when I hit the back button: Really? When I click the back button, you’re going to go all the way back to the top of the page? Way to make me feel like I’m in 9th grade with AOL dial-up. Yeah, that’s how stupid this technique is. Do you know how many ‘new tabs’ I open to try to avoid losing my place on a page?

5. Making me click on a link to ‘read the rest of the story’: I get it. You need a way to measure which of your posts are more popular, so you force me to navigate to a unique URL. But please figure out something besides this mess. Ninety-nine percent of the time, no story is worth clicking on a new link and LOSING MY PLACE ON THE PAGE!

And, friends, that is all. I promise next time to write a post that’s chock-full of heart and positivity. Thank you for indulging this random hot-mess post of negativity.

PS – you’re welcome for that sexy hotness at the top.

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