Friday, December 30, 2011

The Last Shots From the Rides on Monmouth

          I know you're all heartbroken but here they are, the last photos that I took at the Rides on Monmouth show this past summer. Hope you have enjoyed the pictures as much as I enjoyed taking them. Feel free to drop me a line at either or and let me know what you thought of the show and which cars were your favorites.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Next to Last From Newport

          When I started thinking about the things to write while showing the pictures from the Rides On Monmouth show it dawned on me how many stories I actually have from times spent in Newport. Some of them even today I'm reluctant to recall and share. Newport really was the forerunner and in many ways the model for Las Vegas.
          Today Newport doesn't have the reputation it once did. It was the site of the famous Deep Throat pornography case where the judge and jury had to watch the movie more times that you can count to determine if it was actually obscene or not.
          Instead of casinos, strip clubs and houses of prostitution there are lots of fun little shops and some good restaurants. Perhaps the best New York style pizza place in the Midwest, The Newport Pizza Company, is there. It is the closest I've ever come to finding John's on Bleeker that wasn't on Bleeker. There are also a number of good neighborhood places that offer up a variety of food. Some of them have already been featured on my other blog such as this little gem, the place I actually had a burger on the day of the Rides On Monmouth show:

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

And Some More From Rides on Monmouth

          Several years ago my friend Paul Geiger contacted me and asked me to help him produce his feature film directorial debut. My schedule at the time was crazy but I managed to work things out for the six weeks of pre-production and four weeks of production (with a week a couple months later for some pick-ups).
          Having grown up on the west side of Cincinnati, Paul decided to set the story of a young man down on his luck who is unwittingly drawn into crime and, eventually, murder, in Newport. As we talked it became evident that to get the look Paul wanted we needed to shoot as much of the film as possible in Newport.

          Everyone in the city and its county were very helpful. Everything you could imagine us needing, from locations to permissions to even catering, was made available to us. In fact, one of the main locations, a strip club whose owner is the one who sucks the hero into this mess, was seen as our most difficult location to find. In the end it wasn't. When we went looking we discovered that a quaint little club called Trixie Delights' had been raided and shut down three months earlier for illegal drugs and prostitution. It was sitting empty and the county judge, the court judge who ordered it closed, the sheriff's department and the owners of the building were more than happy to let us move in and take it over, if only for a couple of months. I will say that it was quite an adventure going into that club the first time and seeing the mess that was left following the raid. I felt as though I needed to wear a body condom. It just didn't feel clean.
         Overall the shoot went well and featured a great old classic Cadillac that actually belongs to Paul's father. And that, my friends, is my car tie in to this bit of Newport memory. Hope you enjoy the pictures of the great cars from this very amazing show.


Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Rides On Monmouth - Some More

          As I wrote in the original piece about this show, the city of Newport has quite a colorful past. Growing up across the river gave me the opportunity to experience some of this "lush" nightlife on a couple of occasions. While it's important to understand that at the time I was in my late teens, many states had a law that allowed someone to drink 3.2 beer (now rebranded as "light" or Lite beer) but you had to be 21 to drink "real" beer or hard liquor. That didn't stop anyone from going to Newport. As long as you had the money and weren't obviously there with your babysitter, you could go in, enjoy a few drinks and even the company of a nice girl or two.
          One of the craziest times I ever had in Newport was the last part of my brother's bachelor party. It started at my friend Bryan's apartment where we consumed a concoction called "Green God Damn!" Legend has it the reason it got its name is that you would look at it, see that it was green, then take a drink and gasp, "God damn!" Suffice it to say the main ingredient was 180 proof pure grain alcohol. Preferably Everclear.
          After a few of those we headed across the river to Newport. I, wisely, wasn't driving. Unwisely I got in the car with someone who also had downed a couple of glasses of GGD. We literally parked on the sidewalk. Of course we didn't get a ticket because, hey, this was Newport and we were there to spend money.
          Through a haze I remember visiting a couple of strip clubs and my stack of one dollar bills, which was rather thick at the beginning of the evening, quickly dwindled. In fact I awoke the next afternoon with one crumpled GW in my pocket.
          I do remember waving a $20 over my brother's head to attract the attention of a certain young lady. I told her it was his bachelor party and she took him by the hand and led him off to another part of the club. When he returned 15 minutes later he had a very sheepish grin on his face. He never did tell me what happened for that $20.
          Obviously none of this has anything to do with classic and collectable cars. But like the beautiful works of art that are represented in these photos, memories such as this are part of my personal collection. Enjoy.

Monday, December 26, 2011

So Many Great Cars From the Rides on Monmouth

          It took several hours for me to make my way up one side of Monmouth and back down the other. With so many great cars to see and so many wonderful car people with whom to talk, that was little wonder. A couple of hours in I was feeling hungry and stopped for a bite of lunch. If any of you ever look at my other blog you might have read my post about that lunch at Shortneck's Bar and Grill. If you want to take a look, here's the link:
          In the mean time, here are still more cars from the Rides on Monmouth show. Hope you enjoy.