How Can We Be Lovers…If You Find Out I Went to See a Michael Bolton Concert?

It really shouldn’t be held against me. I was only a kid. How was I expected to know any better? We’re all allowed to make bad decisions in our lives. The important thing is that I learned from the situation.

My name is Kelly, and my first concert was Michael Bolton. With my mom.

And let’s be clear. It was not Continue reading “How Can We Be Lovers…If You Find Out I Went to See a Michael Bolton Concert?”

Shocker: E.L. James Took NONE of My Suggestions

Twitter and Facebook feeds are blowing up. A cure for cancer? Nope. Peace declared in Syria? Uh-uh. Finally an Ikea in St. Louis? There are rumors, but nothing confirmed. No, the breaking news heard ’round the world is that the roles for the movie adaptation of Fifty Shades of Grey have been cast. Hear me *squee*…………….Did you hear me?…….oh wait. That’s right. I couldn’t give a whip and chain.

Aside from the fact that I didn’t recognize any of the actors Continue reading “Shocker: E.L. James Took NONE of My Suggestions”

I Am Now In Charge of All Things Retro

Anyone who knows me well is aware I am drawn to most things retro. “Saved By the Bell enthusiast. Check. Fan of a boy band from a bygone generation. Check. An aversion to all gaming systems that aren’t the original Nintendo. Check. Clothes in my closet from not only college, but high school…that I still wear. Check. Being someone who lived during the “olden times,” Continue reading “I Am Now In Charge of All Things Retro”

Perry Tries to Poach More Than Eggs in the St. Louis August Heat

August in St. Louis typically feels like wearing long underwear in a sauna. It’s sweaty and sticky, and sometimes too oppressive to even breathe. Typically. But this August has been anything but typical. I would venture to call it downright lovely. Even recently, when temperatures did break into the nineties, I have found it hard to be all “holy-crap-Dante-must-have-written-Inferno-sitting-under-The-Arch.” St. Louis is a nice place to be, and I felt a little sorry for my husband when he called from his trip in Austin, Texas this past weekend to Continue reading “Perry Tries to Poach More Than Eggs in the St. Louis August Heat”

How MTV Led Me to Tulsa, Oklahoma

I was one of those savagely underprivileged children who did not have cable growing up. Thankfully, I had grandparents who did, and it was at their house where I would gorge myself on Nickelodeon shows likeMr. Wizard” and “You Can’t Do That On Television” to hold me over until my next visit. And, like any good red-blooded preteen of the time, I wanted my MTV.

mtvIn the mid-80’s, MTV was a fantastic bizarre of sequins, neon, hairspray, androgyny, and synthesizers. I didn’t care that Boy George Continue reading “How MTV Led Me to Tulsa, Oklahoma”

Never Defend a Kardashian

I should have known it was going to come back to bite me in the extremely round and prominent rear end. I mean, it IS Kim Kardashian. Two weeks ago I proclaimed Kim K. to be “The Patron Saint of Puffy Preggos Everywhere.” While I feel my reasoning is still sound, I distinctly remember ending the post with this statement:

“Now, when Kim flaunts her post-baby body in a skimpy bikini on the cover of some magazine in a few months, I request to be traded to a different team. Because I’m Continue reading “Never Defend a Kardashian”

Radio Roulette

rouletteWhen I was growing up, listening to the radio in the car with my dad followed one rule: his car, his choice. But I never knew where exactly that choice was going to land as a cacophony of song snippets whirled in and out of my ears. My dad worked the car radio (and the television, for that matter) like a roulette wheel Continue reading “Radio Roulette”

Kim Kardashian: The Patron Saint of Puffy Preggos Everywhere

Disclaimer: I am NOT, under any circumstances, a fan of Kim Kardashian.

Okay, now that I have made that absolutely clear… I decided I am on Team Kim. Wait, whaaaaaaaa?

Let me explain.

I accidentally watched an episode of “Keeping Up With the Kardashians” yesterday. And by accidentally I mean I was shamelessly Continue reading “Kim Kardashian: The Patron Saint of Puffy Preggos Everywhere”

Hell Hath No Fury Like a Punked Nine-Year-Old at a Slumber Party

laverne and shirley and squiggy and lenny
Sure you can join our cool little blog hop. But be cool, okay? Squiggy, stop ogling Laverne’s Freshly Pressed badge. Geez.

A really fun idea was recently hatched by two of my favorite bloggers, Emily of The Waiting and Ashley of Zebra Garden. They are kind of like the Laverne and Shirley of my blog world, making me kind of like the Squiggy who always comes late to the blogging party. Or maybe I’m Lenny. Anyway…Emily and Ashley have started their own version of “Throwback Thursday” called “Remember the Time: A Blog Hop.” Each week they designate a topic about which bloggers can Continue reading “Hell Hath No Fury Like a Punked Nine-Year-Old at a Slumber Party”

Is It Newsworthy to Love the Midwest?

There was an article that caught my attention yesterday, mostly because it was shared multiple times on Facebook by not just friends, but also by local businesses, attractions, and radio stations. It was a piece that ran in The New York Times called “Loving the Midwest” by Curtis Sittenfeld. In it, Sittenfeld explains how she and her husband, who came to live in St. Louis in 2007 by way of a job, evolved from being critical transplants to residents who have grown to accept the city as home. A home they could stay in forever. A home that is indeed a really great place to raise a family.

As many of you might know, I am a born and bred St. Louisan who loves the city that has raised me. And everyone sharing the article on Facebook were also proud St. Louis residents, both natives and transplants. As I scrolled through my news feed, I caught glimpses of words like “vindication” and “finally.”  It was like this virtual communal sigh of relief. See? We haven’t been lying. St. Louis really IS a nice place to live. I mean, if  The New York Times is willing to run the article, then it must be true. New York is the ultimate authority on everything after all.

st. louis map heart
Photo from http://urbanreviewstl.com/2011/02/be-my-valentine-st-louis/

But unlike so many others, the article didn’t inspire such a warm and fuzzy feeling in me as to make me share it on my timeline as well. Don’t get me wrong. I think Sittenfeld did a wonderful job highlighting many of the reasons St. Louis is a fantastically livable city, especially for those raising families: friendly communities, a unifying love for our sports teams, a city that is pretty easy to access from one corner to the other, and the insanely numerous attractions that are both incredible AND free, or at least affordable (which also makes St.Louis a great place to visit. There are cities my family has visited which could change their mottos to City X: Where nothing is cheap or easy. And if its easy, its really not cheap. And if its cheap, its wrong.)

revenge of the nerds
Look who’s cool now!

But as I counted how many times this article was shared in my news feed, all I could think was, Why do we need The New York Times to tell us what we already know? It’s like in every teen dramedy when the cool kid finally sees the nerd for the pretty rockin’ person he or she truly is. But isn’t the real lesson of those movies the realization that the nerd never really needed the cool kid’s approval at all?

Maybe I am bringing a little bitterness to the table. I can own that. But I would bet that just about every proud St. Louisan has heard our great city lambasted by an outsider at least once. A few months ago while in New Jersey, I was having a conversation about music, and I made the comment that St. Louis sometimes gets bypassed for various concert tours, despite the fact that we have a lot of stellar venues for live music. This man, who did not know me, responded, “Because St. Louis sucks. That’s why.” He made this incredibly informed statement having never visited, but because “that was the word on the street.” Maybe he had heard about that bogus list that put St. Louis as the third most violent city in the world. Oh, and he also provided the very solid reason that “St. Louis is in the middle of nowhere, in the middle of the country.” Well, you got me there, bud. I guess we can blame it all on Lewis and Clark then. The whole time he was talking, I couldn’t help but think that my city was getting dissed by a guy from New Jersey. Hmmm…people in glass houses? You would think someone from New Jersey would be more sympathetic towards a native from another place with a bum wrap. Or maybe making fun of someplace else just helps ease the pain of  years and years of getting bullied by New York.

Some non-natives may not outright criticize St. Louis as Mr. Jersey did, but on more than one occasion I have experience attitudes of superiority from transplants from the coasts. Like Sittenfeld described of her and her husband’s attitudes on first arriving in the city after living in Washington D.C. and Philadelphia, coastal transplants seems to find a lack of sophistication in our city because we might not have the raging nightlife or fast-paced energy or as many hybrid cars or…whatever. And that subtle, veiled feeling of being a tad superior for having lived elsewhere before comes across in comments like, “It’s funny how hardly anyone uses your mass transit system,” or “People sure have an interesting way of saying forty-four around here,” or “Why does everyone care what high school you went to?” or “With a crust that thin, can you really call it pizza?” We sense it. And it makes us feel bad about our own city, while in our own city, even though we shouldn’t feel that way. We listen too much to people who don’t know St. Louis like we do, and that is what leads so many of us to become the “self-hating Midwesterners” that Sittenfeld mentions. We are right to love our city the way it is, and we really don’t need anyone else’s approval for doing so.

It is nice that Sittenfeld wrote the piece out of love for the Midwest. And it makes me happy that she and her family have found their place here; though it doesn’t surprise me at all that they did. St. Louis really is an easy city to love. Which is why my Facebook friends and all those local businesses, attractions, and radio stations shouldn’t have been surprised that praises for our home made it to The New York Times, so surprised that they felt the need to make sure everyone knew the cool kid had noticed us. After all, if the St. Louis Post-Dispatch ran a piece about what a great city New York is, I doubt anyone in New York would even notice. Because they know they are fabulous. And we should know we are as well.

St. Louis Arch heart
Photo from: http://thequilterskitchen.blogspot.com/2009/11/give-thanks-with-grateful-heart.html

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