With all the hoopla about Hamilton, Ted and I said that when the show comes to St. Louis, we’ll go.  The time is now.  Hamilton will be playing at the Fabulous Fox Theater in St. Louis from April 3-22.  I went to the Fabulous Fox website to buy tickets today.


Tickets are $80-$500.  Ok, we knew they’d be high and we would have gone as high as $150 each, depending on the seats.  So I clicked to select tickets and got this message.


So that’s why people are tuning in to Channel 4’s 4:30 a.m. newscast–they’re hoping to win the two tickets Channel 4 is giving away every day.  Next step:  Stubhub.  Look at what I found on that website.


Yes, $175 was the lowest and $1,642 was the highest price for a single ticket.  Sheesh!  My conscience has a problem paying $100+ per hour (plus the service fees) for a theater performance.  Just to compare, I checked the prices in New York City and they run the same.  These prices made me wonder how much Hamilton earned as Secretary of the Treasury.  I couldn’t find a dollar amount, but I found this tidbit (editor needed–again!–for the fourth and the last line).


Hamilton’s salary might have been modest, but tickets to see his story aren’t!  I wonder how early we’d have had to buy tickets to find any of those $80-$500 tickets available directly from the Fox.  In a few years, Hamilton will probably be playing at the St. Louis Municipal Opera (Muny)–our wonderful outdoor theater–and tickets will be more reasonably priced.  And then there will be the movie.  Meanwhile, Ted is going to record the 4:30 a.m. Channel 4 newscast.  Maybe we’ll get lucky!


Editorial comment:  I think it’s sad that only wealthy people can afford to attend events like theater performances, major league sporting events, and concerts.  Not only do we have a wide disparity in annual income in our country, but prices like this are fostering a wide disparity in educational and cultural experiences as well.

Today we received a postcard in the mail from Brad.  We didn’t even know we were interested in selling our house, but it sounds like Brad is ready to move into the closing process with T.

Google Earth hasn’t been to our house for awhile.  We had this tree removed in 2012.  It was in its death throes for about three years before that, with a skimpy cover of under-sized leaves.

It’s been awhile since I found a reporting error that irritated me enough to share it, but it happened again today.  The article was published in the aftermath of the school shooting in Parkland, FL.  In the following excerpt from the news article, the author erroneously identifies two of the three generations mentioned.


Just as their grandparents feared polio . . .

Dr. Jonas Salk’s polio vaccine was developed in 1953 and was available for public use in 1955.  Dr. Albert Sabin’s oral polio vaccine was available for use in 1961.  I was vaccinated with both.  A local drugstore provided the injections, and I remember going there after church on Sundays for the series of three injections.  I also remember taking the pink oral vaccine dropped onto sugar cubes.  It was from 1916 until the 1950s that polio was an annual summertime threat in one part or another of the United States.  The worst U.S. polio epidemic occurred in 1949, claiming 2,700+ lives.  I was two years old that year, and my oldest brother was an infant.  It was my parents–“Generation Columbine’s” great-grandparents, born just before and during the 1920s–who feared polio throughout their lives, especially for their children, including Ted and me.  I don’t remember being afraid of polio, but I know that large public gatherings were avoided during the summer months and public swimming pools were often closed during the 1940s and 1950s to prevent the spread of polio.  I do remember my 4-H club collecting money from the good citizens of Hingham for the March of Dimes to support the fight to eradicate polio.


. . . and their parents feared nuclear war, . . .

Six of my eight grandchildren were born after the 1999 Columbine school shooting.  (Alex and Kyra were born in 1997 and 1998, respectively.)  Their parents are my children, born between 1972 and 1978.  The Berlin Wall fell in 1989 when Jeff was 17, and the Cold War was lukewarm long before that.  The parents of “Generation Columbine” did not live in fear of nuclear war; it was their grandparents–Ted and me–who were afraid Khrushchev would hit the nuclear button at any moment.  In the 1950s–my elementary school years–some public buildings had fallout shelter signs on them, indicating that those buildings could protect us from nuclear fallout in the event of an atomic war.  (Hah!)  I doubt if “Generation Columbine’s” parents ever saw one of these signs.


In summary, there is a “Generation Columbine” and there were generations who feared polio and the Cold War.  The author of the article named one of the three groups correctly, but he is off by a full generation for two-thirds of his main idea.  Aarrgghh!  Don’t journalists have to check their facts before publishing?  Don’t they use proofreaders?  Apparently not.

My dad loved Hostess Twinkies, and my mom packed one in his lunch every day.  I’m pretty sure Twinkies have negative nutritional value and an expiration date of “when the world ends.”  I wonder if Dad would have appreciated this treat for Easter dinner.

Go, Elon Musk!  Of the 500,000+ objects of space junk orbiting the earth, the Tesla driven by Spaceman is way cooler than the old satellites and spent rocket boosters up there.  The best part of the launch might have been the return of the reusable booster rockets to the launch pad.  Wow!


An English major’s work is never finished.  Notice that, even in cartoons, there’s a need for a good editor.

I gave up Facebook at least six months ago.  I didn’t delete my account, but I quit trolling through my news feed regularly.  I was never a very active participant on Facebook–about 50 posts since I joined in 2010.  I think my last post was in March last year, and then I changed my profile picture in November.  I probably check my news feed once a month or less.  After 5-10 minutes of reading, I’m bored, so I close the (Face)book.  My Facebook activity ended the evening I caught myself thinking, “I’m so tired, I just want to go to bed, but I still have to check my Facebook news feed.”  Really???  I quit cold turkey that night, and I have never missed it.

I thought I was a brave individual, breaking away from the herd, but that was before I read an article earlier this week that said twenty-some percent of Facebook users use the app less than they did a year ago.  Reasons include the increasing presence of fake news and partisan politics, as well as what was described as “Fakebook”–people posting photos of their new cars, their exotic vacations, and tributes to their unbelievably wonderful family members (gag!).  Apparently, this makes readers feel inadequate because their own lives aren’t that (pun intended) picture perfect.  I like my life, so that wasn’t my reason for backing off;  I just got tired of reading the same stuff from the same people every day.  If anyone seriously wants me to know what s/he is doing on a given day, give me a call or send me an email!

Having said all that, on my once-per-month troll of my news feed, I found this cute picture posted by a friend.  He didn’t mention where it was from, but he has a young grandchild, and this is the kind of humor kids that age love.  The occasional post like this is why I haven’t deleted my FB account.  Yet.

Ted knows that winter is my least favorite season, and he also knows how much I look forward to spring.  He has established a tradition of bringing me budding bulbs each year as soon as they are available in the stores so that I have spring flowers before the weather is really ready for them.  This year, he brought me some powerful, magic tulips.

It was winter when I put the tulips in the window this morning . . .

. . . and by afternoon, the snow was gone.  Magic!

Ted and I went out to our Valentine’s Day dinner last night to avoid the two-hour restaurant waits tonight.  This afternoon, we went to a movie for a Valentine’s Day date.  As we were walking out of the mall, we saw this sign in an athletic wear store.  It’s a strong “I love you” Valentine’s Day message.

I was reading some of Jeff’s old blog posts and came across this picture of Jeff and Kathy with my brother Denny’s kids, Cheryl and Eric.  Jeff always makes fun of the clothes he’s wearing in his childhood pictures–and he did so in his blog post–but that’s what was in style at the time.  I once spoke with a young clogger, dressed in her clogging outfit with a can-can under it to hold out her skirts.  When I told her my friends and I all wore can-cans in grade school, her response was, “You actually wore these in public????”  What will today’s young people say when they look back and see themselves with their pants hanging below their hips?

But back to the cute kids . . .

I’m guessing the ages, but the kids from left to right are Kathy (3), Cheryl (2), Jeff (4) and Eric (4).

My brother Tom lives in a western suburb of Chicago.  With the heavy snow hitting Chicago this week, Tom sent some childhood pictures to family members.

That’s me, bundled up and sitting on the sled the horses are pulling.  I was three years old at the time.  Dad told Mom to take a picture because it would likely be the last time he ever drove a team.  As I recall, the horses and sled belonged to my great-uncle Phil, who lived about a mile from us, but Tom doesn’t remember Uncle Phil having horses, so I could be wrong.  On the other hand, Tom wasn’t born until two years after this photo was taken, so Uncle Phil might have sold the horses before Tom joined the family, making this the last time my dad could drive his team.


This is Tom at age 6, standing high in a front tractor scoop (tractor driven by my dad).  In those days, we got a lot of snow in the Wisconsin winters–look at those snowbanks!–so this wasn’t overkill when the driveway needed to be cleared.  Note:  Dad could drive (and fix) just about anything!

During the past week, St. Peters has has three winter weather advisories for snow (0.5-1.0 inches each time) and sleet/freezing rain (up to 0.1 inch each time).  In spite of the advisories, the snow went north of us and the freezing rain went south.  This is what we accumulated on the ground.

After the first advisory, the forecast <1 inch of snow fell, but the ground was so warm, the snow didn’t even stick to concrete surfaces.

Yesterday’s advisory brought us about a half-inch of sleet–which stuck only to the concrete surfaces.  Check the road.  Luckily (insert sarcasm here), the streets were treated to the point of being white and the plow went over them several times.


The snow that went north of us made it to my brother Tom’s house in the western Chicago suburbs.

Not only local weather alerts, but this snow made headline news on CNN and elsewhere.


The forecast “verified,” as Ted would say, and Tom emailed the following information to me:

[Saturday, Feb. 10]  We pushed about 8″ of snow since Thursday.  A little more may be coming tonight – or maybe not.

[Sunday, Feb. 11]  We got about another 4″ of snow.  The weather guy said we tied a record with 9 consecutive days of accumulating snow.  The last date was in 1905 or something like that.


This reminded me of a cartoon I saw during the January “bomb cyclone” on the East Coast.


These two impersonators were quickly removed from the opening ceremony at the 2018 Winter Olympics.  “Kim” made a statement to the press:

“We wanted to surprise everyone and bring world peace and then we’re being escorted out by security guards, which I think is really unfair,” the Kim impersonator said. “Doesn’t everyone want peace?”

One of Ted’s and my favorite lunch restaurants often has a waiting line for seating.  As an alternative to waiting for a table to become available, the restaurant has what it calls a “community table.”  The community table seats ten and almost always has vacant chairs.  If you don’t want to wait in line, you can usually be seated immediately at the community table where you get the same food, the same service, and a chance to meet new friends.

Today, while Ted and I were waiting for a table, we heard a server offer an incoming party the opportunity to be seated at the “communion table.”  I don’t think so–unless it offers forgiveness of sins, as well as bread and wine, with lunch.

I saw this at Biltmore last spring.  Of course, every woman knows this is true, . . .

. . . but do you think Cinderella pictured shoes like these?  These pictures were part of an historical shoe exhibit at our Hawaiian resort.

The center shoe symbolizes Cinderella, who ran down the palace staircase and lost her glass slipper/shoe.  The 6″ high tiki head carved on the clog heel is pretty eye-catching too.  How long do you think the heel on the fish shoe will last?

The top sandal is called “Splendor in the Grass.”  The bottom one uses every part of a leek.  Check out its bulb toe.