Pits of Hell

On our late-night journey home, the refrigerator moon had set. A heavy curtain of clouds rolled overhead. No rain. No wind. Just darkness on a desolate road. I could see only what Erifnus’s headlights allowed. A dozen miles ahead we’d … Read More

Apres Noel

‘Twas the day after Christmas and all through the land, businesses opened to make exchanges.

Nobody Believed I Was Santa

I was a beanpole, skinny as a chair leg. Fresh out of school, my first job was selling ads for the Rolla Daily News. The boss told me to find a Santa Claus for Hillcrest Shopping Center. Nobody wanted to … Read More

Wings Over Columbia

It was the largest crowd ever to invade Memorial Stadium. One autumn Saturday a dozen years ago, thousands of football fans packed together, and their colorful clothing attracted a million Monarch butterflies who rode the breeze across the stadium. From … Read More

But the greatest of these…

Painted olive green, Hartville’s water tower earns style points as it sticks out from the old red brick buildings like a garnish on the swizzle stick in a giant bloody Mary. I know that image isn’t the town’s intent. But, … Read More

Clearing Left Lane Road Hogs

I-70 sucks. Oh, the road is okay. The pain and suffering comes from uncooperative drivers. It reminds me of something my grandpappy told me once. He said, “Son, get outta my way!” Those words hang with me, especially as Erifnus … Read More

It Was A Great Day When The Circus Left Town

In 1933, the circus came to town.  It stayed for a dozen years, or at least it rested in Rolla, where the Russell Brothers Circus plopped and hunkered for the winter. And each spring, the major three-ring extravaganza rehearsed in … Read More

Fear and Loafing in St. Jo

The arrow smashed into his jaw, knocking out five teeth. He kept riding. It was his second wound, delivered from his pursuers. He had jerked the first arrow out of his shoulder, and kept riding. Now Pony Bob’s mouth had … Read More

Ava is a palindrome

It looks the same coming from any direction. The water tower sits atop a hill off the center of town, shouting “Ava Bears” from its steel sides. This garden spot in the middle of the Mark Twain Forest missed a … Read More