Dear Bob, here are some photos of my life here on the campus of Concordia Seminary. I love kids, working with the grounds crew, swimming, playing with my dog friends, and especially my own family people.
Here in St. Louis neighborhoods, not so much on the Illinois side, trick or treaters are supposed to tell a joke before they're given candy. Although cute, I find this tradition awkward. When you have a big number of kids hit your door at the same time with another large group heading your way, it's really time consuming to listen to joke after joke.
I'd prefer the kids just be happily friendly and then make room for the next bunch.
I've seen links to a story on a canine distemper outbreak in St. Louis animal shelters all weekend. The illness has killed 17 dogs, mostly puppies, at the Stray Rescue of St. Louis. The rescue said 10 other dogs are still alive and have tested positive for distemper. This is bad enough to learn, but the cause is even more disturbing.
The cause is raccoons. Raccoons! Our nemesis in Collinsville for several years. Thankfully we keep Ferdie up on his shots, but it's still worrisome what these raccoons may be carrying. A couple of years ago Critter Control came out and over a period of one week, they trapped 16 raccoons, 1 possum, and a neighbors cat on our property. They released the cat but carried off the others.
Needless to say, raccoons have been prevalent in Collinsville. Recently, I haven't heard of a raccoon sighting nor has Ferdie been fascinated by something or some smell around the deck or our next door neighbors deck, but that doesn't mean we're totally in the clear.
Here's an FYI. Raccoons are not the loveable fuzzballs movies and commercials make them out to be.
I finally got to a grandson's soccer game today, we've been so tied up with events around here on weekends that it hasn't been possible before. This was Connor's 3rd grade game played in one of the least attractive parks we've ever seen. It is named Norm West Park on Mary Avenue off Manchester just east of Brentwood BLVD. Two sides were filled with heavy equipment, piles of gravel, and stacks of iron and rows of huge storm drains. Never seen anything like it for a park.
Anyway, here are the two teams lined up to get instructions before the game.
There's Connor, number 16
While the game was going on Christian and Nick were playing on the deck of a very old park house.
Of course if there's an opening of some kind you crawl through it
While the parental unit watches from a safe distance.
Ferdie came too
Nick found a pile of dirt
After the game which our guys won, there was a team picture and with 3rd grade boys you can imagine how many takes there had to be.
Then Nick walked Ferdie to the car all the while singing, Giddy up Giddy up Giddy up
Speaking of hamburgers as I did just below, I've always been turned off by the mostly icky lettuce which shows up on take out hamburgers. Usually its a piece of tired looking iceburg lettuce but if you go to a fancier burger place they lay gourmet greens on top which, sadly, are mostly wilted and often have tough stems which get caught in the throat. Add more cheese or jalapenos or something, just spare me the lettuce.
This is bizarre to me, but it just goes along with the recent love of all things Ramen. Ramen noodle shops have popped up all over and of course if Ramen soup is great, then getting Ramen in everything else is great too. Now we're seeing Ramen hamburger buns being wolfed down at every place from small burger joints to food trucks to the home kitchen.
97 year old WWII veteran, Jim Schlegel, has been a lifelong Cubs fan and was able to go to the 1945 World Series when ticket prices were $7.50 but this year the cost is seeing tickets going for $21,000 on the secondary market. This was too high for him or for most people. But CNBC host, Marcus Lemonis had tickets and was looking for the perfect baseball fan to give them to.
Lemonis got in touch with the family and offered two front-row tickets to Game Three at Wrigley Field, where Schlegel could potentially see his Cubs come close to clinching the Series for the first time since 1908.
Ahead of this, Schlegel's family had set up a GoFundMe campaign to raise money so he could go to the game and that fund topped out at $11,000. Since they do not need this money for the game, the family is going to donate it to the Purple Heart Fund.
Schlegel will be sitting in the front row behind home plate tonight. Watch for him. And, it may just be that he will be sitting near Pink Hat guy who is always behind home plate at Wrigley.
The senate race in Illinois is very close as of this morning. Incumbent republican Mark Kirk is fighting to keep his position against Rep Tammy Duckworth and it hasn't been pretty.
Kirk has been a surprising disappointment to me even though I'm not voting in Illinois anymore. He has proven himself to be more of a democrat than a republican by his votes in the senate and whichever of these two wins, it won't make much difference.
This amazing statistic from ESPN reporter Darren Rovell: "38,172 was sellout crowd tonight. The SMALLEST crowd in Cleveland for the 1948 World Series was 70,306."
Boy! What stadium did they play in back then to have that many people? And it was the smallest crowd that year.
They played in Cleveland Stadium, often described as "the mistake by the lake". It was the first stadium built with public money and was on a site along Lake Erie which had been a landfill filled with old cars and tires. Originally named Lakefront Stadium, it opened on July 3, 1932 and had a capacity of 78,189. The problem was it soon became obvious it was too big and not enough fans filled the seats which made it seem empty. The team alternated between the old League Park (weekdays) and the new (weekends). It wasn't until 1946 that they played there continuously and changed the name from Lakefront Park to Cleveland Municipal Stadium.
The last game held there was on October 3, 1993 and the next season they moved into the new Progressive Field.
In 1948 the Cleveland Indians ended the regular season tied with the Boston Red Sox, the first time in American League history this had ever happened. The two teams had a one game tie breaker game and Cleveland won. They went on to play the Boston Braves in the World Series and it was the first and last time they did this. This team was also the first team to have African American players on a World Series roster.
Remember Chester Lampkin St. Louis folks? He was one of the channel 5 weather reporters who left last year and settled in New Zealand where is working with that country's national weather service. He still keeps up with St. Louis on Twitter as well as posting pretty cool bits of info and pictures of New Zealand. Last night he put up a funny US map which answered the question: "How-to question each US state Googles more frequently than any other state."
Here is the map which shows the answer to this question, you may need to click it to enlarge.
I can sort of believe Missouri, there is a lot of interest in backyard chickens here.