9 Q&A: Jeff Ruby on his new book and his 'unlikely life' in football, food and headlines

CINCINNATI - Jeff Ruby has a memoir. Co-written with Robert Windeler, "Not Counting Tomorrow: The Unlikely Life of Jeff Ruby" hit Amazon on Dec. 21.

He may be a man of few words in this Q&A, but his book promises to spare no ink as it chronicles Ruby's "amazing life story from Asbury Park, NJ to the top of the culinary world, serving actors and actresses, heads of state, presidents and hall of fame athletes." 

Jeff Ruby visited 9 On Your Side on Dec. 20, the eve of his book's debut. Picture with Sherry Hughes (left) and Tanya O'Rourke.

9 questions for Jeff Ruby

1. The title is intriguing. Can you provide an example of something unlikely about your life? 

I was in an accident, pronounced brain dead and read my last rites.

2. Why December 2013 for the release of your book?

It kept being delayed because strange things kept happening that added to the story outlined in the book.

3. What is it about Cincinnati that attracted a New Jersey native to settle here?

My job offer out of Cornell University was to start in Syracuse, but I was a Reds fan and I told the company (Holiday Inn) that if they wanted me I would only come to work for them if they put me at a Holiday Inn in Cincinnati.

4. Of all the famous—and infamous—people you’ve had in your restaurant, can you point to one or two truly memorable examples?

Throwing OJ Simpson out of our Louisville restaurant on a packed Friday night before the Derby.

5. What lessons from your football days at Cornell might also be applicable in the restaurant business or life in general?

Discipline, working as a team toward one goal: beating the competition.

6. Certain events that make news headlines seem to move you—and even make you really mad. Can you share a common theme when it comes to issues that push your buttons?

When murder victims’ families are unable to get the justice they deserve because the murderer is either rich and famous--or becomes famous for committing the murder--I become obsessed with helping that family get justice for their loved one.

7. You are huge on Twitter! What is it about tweeting that appeals to you?

Making friends and inspiring kids with my advice, my experiences and words of wisdom: Kid Tips of the Day. (You can follow Ruby on Twitter @TheRealJeffRuby )

8. Aside from your own eateries, where do you like to dine locally?

Via Vite, Jean-Robert’s, Montgomery Inn.

9. What’s on your New Year’s resolution, or 2014 to-do list?

Get the Waterfront reopened.

Never a dull moment: More about Jeff Ruby

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