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During the early to mid-20th century
Toledo, Ohio
was America's third
largest rail center. It was called Little Chicago, then. Musicians and
politicians, gangsters and thugs, boxers and golfers, the rich and the poor--
all speeding through railroad time and space, though, in quite differing cars.
Toledo was just another good stop along America's steel-rail highway. The
Pullman cars, the restrooms, politics, sports and golf were off-limits to all but the
selectively-bred Anglo-Saxon Christian boys-- dandies in red-coat jackets
and elegant neckties with money in their pockets and highly papered walls--
a rifle over the mantle and the deed to a house they claimed they owned.
Along comes Detroit's Brown Bomber,
Joe Louis. Training for his next big match
he selects Toledo for rest and relaxation, for time away from the glitz of the big cities,
the glare of flashbulb lights, the noise and the bells. He comes here to think--to
prepare. Toledo welcomes him. From the
Ottawa Park Golf Course to Hines Farm
people  are asking for his autograph, shaking his hands, swooning in his presence.
Fast-forward into the 21st century where we see Barack Obama getting
away from all of the hustle-bustle, taking time to relax, working-out at the gym,
rehearsing  his strategies for the upcoming fight a few days hence. Taking time
out all along the way, nonetheless, for autographs, personal chats, media
events and hugging sweet little babies. Inside the rectangular
SeaGate Centre
thousands of locals show-up to at least catch a
glimpse of, if not meet the young fighter from the big town of
Chicago, Illinois-- that southside kid from just down the tracks.
Barack is a mixture of
Muhammad Ali's "Float like a butterfly, sting
like a bee." psychology and of Joe Louis with his steady hands and
plodding stance. Wednesday morning after meeting thousands of fans,
 America's great hype-hope boards his jet, waving adios,
promising to return and heading his plane eastward for the debate
 later in the evening. Isn't it ironic, with of all of the problems in the
world the tone of the big and final debate swirls around a Toledo
plumber, wannabe, with dreams of becoming a millionaire and the fears
that if he ever does that this politician from the Windy City wants to tax
it away. The other candidate throws the first punch of the fight with Toledo's
"Joe the Plumber" rhetoric, and stays the course throughout the debate.
Joe, the would-be-rich-plumber from Toledo grabs his fifteen minutes
of fame, prolonging it into a life's full of worldwide media stardom.
Millions listen to Joe's sage observations, how Barack is like
Sammy Davis Junior-- tap-dancing around the issues and acting like
Robin Hood who is robbing from the rich and giving to the poor--
words of racial bias and fearmongering with class warfare.
Not unlike Joe Louis and Muhammad Ali or even the
Energizer Bunny, Barack takes a lickin' and keeps on tickin'.
"I love you too." is his favorite line.
The times they are a changing and we can hear his train a' coming.

Also See Gallery: Barack's First Visit

(Click to Enlarge)

Recognizable Faces:
The Blade's
John Robinson Block
State Representative
Peter Ujvagi  State Senator Teresa Fedor
State Fire Marshall,
Mike Bell Toledo Mayor Carty Finkbiener
Marcy Kaptur Lieutenant Governor Lee Fisher
Sherrod Brown County Commissioner Ben Konop
and the UT Rocket's new basketball coach
Gene Cross
Video/Audio Streaming:
13ABC  MyFox  NBC24  13abc Superpage
Print: Blade- Tom Troy   Roberta de Boer   Troy   Photo Gallery
Free Press- Brandi Barhite

Joe the Plumber:
A Year In The Spotlight A Slideshow   Blade  Troy  LA Times  
Huffington  WTOL11   CNN  LA Times  Jay Leno 
 CBS Network  Salon (Bob the Banker)
Potpourri: The Rap Up
Official Sites:
Ohio Barack Obama    Obama for America


Adventure Travel