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‘A thousand ways to try’

2011 February 25

Restaurant Week: When it’s February and there are blizzard-like conditions it’s probably restaurant week in Cleveland. There are a bajillion things to do around here besides eat, and, maybe it’s some sort of ancient cold-weather survival instinct, but during this time of year, it seems like all we do is eat. But when it’s freezing outside and even walking seems treacherous, there’s nothing better than a round table full of friends, warm, flattering light, and a plate full of food. Try something new, and if you need ideas about where to start, check out Scene’s latest list of the best places to eat in Cleveland. Tonight: Johnny’s downtown.

Being happy at Happy Dog: I know I talk about this place all the time, but I love Happy Dog — music, tater tots, great atmosphere, all kinds of different folk. I always love this place. Especially when Ryan stands next to the Elvis lamp (really, same haircut) and Erin gets a glass of what looks like turkey fat.

As much as I’ve been bitching about winter this year (because I am really, really looking forward to the thaw of 2011), I really shouldn’t complain so much because the snow is actually kind of awesome. The other day I stopped my car on Starkweather and 14th to take this picture.

Far from Ohio, in a remote part of Mexico, millions of monarch butterflies arrive from Canada and cluster in trees in a forest. They say their wings sound like a stream flowing in the distance. It’s in the middle of a drug-ravaged part of Mexico. I don’t know why I’m so intrigued by this story, but I heard it the other day, and before I fall asleep at night, I imagine I’m lying on the floor of the forest listening to the wings of thousands of butterflies.

“I’m the light in the middle of every man’s fog” (yes, again, but it’s a new live version):

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