Category Archives: K

Am I Proud?

Damn straight! Way to go, K!

University of Missouri – St. Louis, May 17, 2014

They ARE Giants

K is a wonderful daughter and for my Father’s Day/birthday she bought two tickets to They Might Be Giants concert at the Pageant Theater. Well, as the day arrived, she came home from college for the weekend and we (eventually) found ourselves standing just a few feet from center stage.

The Pageant is a great venue; while it might not have been sold out, it was close, but the floor was not uncomfortably crowded. The opening performer was Jonathan Coulton; he and “The Jonathan Coulton Both Stars” very much reminded me of Bowling For Soup. He opened with an amusingly entertaining version of “Mr. Fancy Pants”, performed on…something. I’ve got some Googling to do. After the rest of his band came out, they played “Code Monkeys” among other songs. If I played Portal, I might have recognized “Still Alive”.

TMBG came out firing with several hits (here’s someone’s video of their opener “Dead”), including their new single “Can’t Keep Johnny Down”, several oldies but goodies (“Don’t Let’s Start”, “Birdhouse in Your Soul”, “Ana Ng”, “The Mesopotamians”, and of course “Particle Man”). Linnell rocked the keyboard, accordian, bass clarinet, and Flansburgh, his voice reinforced by a glass of Ecstacy-laced hazelnut LSD (well, that’s what he said it was) was very entertaining. My voice was a bit sore from providing the tragically missing high third to the harmonies, and K and I found them to be a lot more fun live than we were anticipating.

performing “Particle Man” stage left

It’s safe to say a good time was had by all.


“How I Spent My Summer Vacation”

Okay, it’s not one of those papers written for school, but I’m due to post a note about our family trip up to The Homeland and all our activities there — boring to some, even more boring to others.  Well, here goes…

The 14hr 2min drive up nort’ went about as smoothly as it could, and we arrived with most of the clan already there. The first couple days were spent visiting with family and friends, checking out the Polk County Fair, and getting over the “jet lag”. I swung a trade with a baseball card booth in one of the display buildings, and picked up grab bag goodies for the young nephews. Staying just ½ block from the fairgrounds is pretty darn convenient, and a nice location to watch the fireworks, too. And since we apparently brought our St. Louis weather north with us (we had a couple days of 90°F+/high humidity) the shorter walks were appreciated as well.

Friday night the four brothers and their wives had a nice supper at Joe Dimaggio’s Pizza & Grill. (My first car was a 1977 Honda Civic hatchback previously owned by Joe, and I got to tell him that it served me well. And yes, that is his name.)

We had a pleasant surprise when Max (our foreign exchange student from Germany back in the 80’s) dropped by in the middle of his business trip in the US. We were two Texans and a serviceman in Iraq away from the entire shebang.

Saturday morning started with a 5-K walk/run, and many of the clan were among the 140+ that participated.

Polk County Fair 5-K Walk/Run (K on the far right)

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The Nest, She’s-a Empty

Mo and I have had sufficient time to recover from last week’s tactical victory to sit back and reflect on K’s move to Mizzou.

We got to Mizzou just before the 9AM start time, and sure enough, as soon as we got everything emptied onto the sidewalk and the car parked, the rain began to fall.   We managed to schlep everything up the stairs, towel off the wetter stuff, put a few things into place, meet her roommate Devon, pick up a few needed items, rearrange the furniture (again), and eventually (sniff) say goodbye…

room 241
K, early on in the move-in process

In our periodic contacts with K since, it sounds like college life is to her liking, and will be even moreso once a couple weeks have gone by and some of the kinks are straightened out.  Mizzou-RAH!


The Sunday commencement ceremony went quite smoothly (2 hrs, as advertised), and 239 of St. Charles West’s finest were given their walking papers, including K:

K and her proud parents

And, ironically, the next morning K began her summer class at the local community college.  Should be a nice way to ease into things before leaving to Mizzou in a couple months.

It’s a Girl!

…actually, it’s lots of girls.

Saturday night was K’s prom night, and that means all the to-do; getting hair done up, getting dressed, meeting everyone for photos, the dance, and this time around — the post-dance party and sleepover, which we hosted.

Kay’s hair looked wonderful, and she and Kev made a great couple.  The photo shoot at the Ameristar Hotel lobby was a zoo, with kids from many schools milling the lobby and promenade, but everyone looked dressed to the nines.

Mo got periodic text updates from K (another girl wore her same dress!) while we finished prepping the house.  Later that evening the kids started arriving — we have no idea what the peak occupancy was, but as the boys filed out between 1:30AM – 2AM, we believe the overnight count was 16 girls!  I didn’t have an exact count, because I had to leave by 7:30AM to play trombone and sing at the final McClay campus church service, and the girls were still going strong at 3AM when I finally went to bed.

During the time I was at church, my cocoon hatched!  As previously expected, it was a Polyphemus moth, and a bouncing baby girl, at that.  In the photo here, she was still hanging to allow blood to flow to the wings as they unfolded into shape (here is how she will eventually look).  As the weekend was drizzly and cool, I am waiting until lunchtime today to release her into the wild.  I’m crossing my fingers that she’ll have luck mating before her ~1 week of life is over.  I wouldn’t mind more of these beauties hanging cocoons in the local flora.

“Alice in Wonderland”

Mo & I topped off a nice day yesterday evening by attending the SCW Player’s presentation of “Alice in Wonderland”. It was wonderfully done, and the backdrop and costumes in the opening scene with Alice meeting the Caterpillar perched atop the mushroom elicited ooh’s and aah’s from the crowd attending. We personally thought the performance of The Cook was over-the-top, and she stole every scene she was in.

Afterwards, we heard that the kids sitting in the front row approached K and asked her, “Why were you lying? You ate all the tarts!” So it certainly appears that she successfully tossed the Knave of Hearts under the bus in those kids’ eyes.