The Woman Who Toppled Madmen

I left grad school to take a job with Gardner Advertising, Saint Louis’ second-largest ad agency. Clients ranged from Busch Beer and the St. Louis Baseball Cardinals to Puppy Chow and Chuck Wagon dog food, to Jack Daniels whiskey. Even … Read More

The Marshfield Tornado

One catastrophic event affected 16-year-old John Boone so deeply he recounted the vivid story in nearly every concert until he died. Around suppertime on Sunday, April 18, 1880, a tornado with winds topping 200 miles per hour leveled much of … Read More

Sunrise with Coast Guard Cutter

Our sloop sailed all night across the Bermuda Triangle. At dawn we crossed the Gulf Stream. We had maneuvered into position to enter the Lake Worth cut into West Palm when a voice crackled over our ship-to-shore radio: “Westbound sloop … Read More

Smash Rock on the Jacks Fork

 Every year in early spring, Smash Rock stands between me and inner peace. As my rendezvous with Smash Rock approaches, I concentrate on little else. My sole mission hardens into a successful negotiation past this looming Lorelei. Smash Rock could … Read More

Fender Bender

Early Spring. Jacks Fork running full. Don’t get caught sideways.

Who still owns a superball?

Not since Elvis left the building has Vegas laid a table so heavy with hyperbole. But it was a party. The show opened with gridiron visuals glued to Paul Anka’s lyrics My Way sung by Old Blue Eyes to the … Read More

The Day The Capitol Burned

Sunday evening, February 5, 1911. Unusually warm. A thunderstorm approached the state capitol from the west and lightning struck the dome around suppertime. Monsignor Joseph Selinger remembers, “I was standing on the front steps of the hospital [Saint Mary’s] about … Read More

Winter Water

The air was cold, a few degrees above freezing. Three of us pushed one long canoe away from shore and paddled out of a swirling eddy into the main stream, thus surviving the most dangerous phase of the trip: the … Read More

19 minutes at Burger King changed my life

  I was running behind. Miles of untraveled road awaited to unfold north of Springfield, and it was already nearing lunch time. I wanted to stop at the legendary Anton’s Coffee Shop, looming ahead in my windshield. The experience at … Read More