The Elusive Cardinals

My family moved to St. Louis in the early 80s. I was in kindergarten and had to move in the middle of the year. But I didn't mind. Moving seemed like a great adventure. I fell in love with everything in St. Louis, from the schools to the people to the local sports--especially the Cardinals. It happened to be this was where I started playing baseball for the first time, so naturally, I became a ridiculously fan of the Cards. My first professional baseball game was with Dad and his best friend in Busch Stadium. I remember I couldn't believe how big the stadium was! Anyway, we moved after a little more than three years. I never went back until this summer. Since the 1980s, I've had other chance

A perfect day?

I cannot think of a better way to spend a Saturday. Seriously. Have you ever had a day you realized was perfect while it was happening? They are rare, I'll admit. But I experienced it this weekend. It all started with my nephew's 6th birthday. He wanted to go to Stone Mountain, so my brother and his wife invited us to go as well. Then, my niece, who is in college, said she was free the same weekend. We asked her to come with us, and she brought her roommate. We spent the entire scorching day at Stone Mountain Park doing everything we could while we were there. We hiked. We mini-golfed. We drank lots of water only to watch us all become drenched with sweat in minutes. My nephew was the embodi

Experiencing 'Racing in the Rain'

I didn't want to go to the movies to see it, and my reservations had nothing to do with the film itself. I knew I would cry. And, boy, did I. I'm referring to the recent release of "The Art of Racing in the Rain," the movie based on the novel by Garth Stein. So am I just a wimp that sobs at any movie? Uh, perhaps, but my reasons for being cautious about seeing the film were quite personal. I remember about ten years ago when I was still in the journalism game I needed coffee to make it to the deadline. While in line, I saw the novel I knew nothing about while waiting at the Starbucks near the office. The place was packed, so I had time to read the back of the book. I immediately bought it at

Musings on Munich

The train rolled from Erding to Munich on an impromptu decision to check out the German city I had never visited. As the gorgeous countryside passed by the full windows, the young people near me astounded me. Not because they were loud or obnoxious, but because they sat without cell phones and quietly had a pleasant conversation. I couldn't believe it. When I'm usually in a public place, I don't notice many authentic conversations. Maybe I'm missing them. Most people put the earbuds in as they stroll. I'm not any better--I love audiobooks and podcasts. So I found it surprising on the train ride how much the two teenagers seemed to enjoy a simple, quiet conversation with their peer. I thought

Fighting off school fears

Young people throughout my community went back to school today. I couldn't help but feel sympathy pains for them. Struggling to sleep as you worried about your new teacher or teachers. Realizing your endless summer had ended. The nervous feeling as you waited for the bus to come, hoping it would be late so you might get one more day at home (that never happened). The first day of school brought back a memory I hadn't thought of it years. It was the night before fourth grade. My family was living in Fairport, New York. I was the only one who had to go to school the next day cause my little brother was too young and still able to stay at home. What did I do with my last day? I played the Atari

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