Mistakes were made: I would like to thank the Riverfront Times for entrusting me with the title, the responsibility and the honor of being Mr. Local Blog o' the Week [Unreal, November 30]. I hope I brought great honor, glad tidings and due diligence to the post, and I have worn my Badge of Shame proudly. I feel I have been poked by Fate's Fickle Finger of Destiny and showered with blessings by the RFT staff who saw it fitting to bestow upon me, a humble okra distributor, the most coveted (it is too damn far to the spellchecker for me to turn back now) of all literary prizes, the Blog o' the Week.
People stop me on the street day in and day out and say to me, "Hey! You're that Blog o' the Week guy!" And I say, "Yeah." And they say, "You suck!" But I think they merely misunderstand the great honor of being one of 52 people a year to be dubbed Sir Blog o' the Week. I mean sure, they only gave out six Nobels this year, but how many people do you know who are currently working for peace? Exactly. Peace is overrated, but blogs? Well, at last count by the National Council for the Self-Absorbed there were approximately 2.64 billion active bloggers in north county alone. And let me tell you, it's not the peacemakers who are making a difference, it's the bloggers.
From sea to shining sea, this proud nation is standing together and bitching about Iraq and Merry Christmas and various and sundry things (Okay, I admit it, I had to look that one up. But only because I thought "sundry things" referred to underpants; but I digress.) And I, Kelly Houlihan, for one brief shining moment in the sun, stood at the head of our furious phalanx of common philosophers, staring into the bright, hot, incandescent spotlight owed to one of such great, marvelous magnitude and, um, things.
Thank you, Unreal, for taking the time to read all 2,563 entries (including bibliography, footnotes and special introduction by Hervé Villechaize and Ricardo Montalban) and I trust you enjoyed the basket of waffles I sent. And thank you to my darling soon-to-be fiancée, Veronica, whose love, support and nourishment I could not do without. And her breasts. And finally, I'd like to thank the 93,000 people who visited Seven Levels (www.opendiary.com/entrylist.asp?authorcode=D294805 ) for the first time last week. And thank you for visiting the Seven Levels Gift Shop, where we stock all the most stylin' T-shirts, mugs and hip waders embroidered with the unmistakable Seven Levels logo and dipped in molten platinum for that futuristic look the kids love.
What's up with MetroLink's hours? Great piece by Randall Roberts on the Landing ["Laclede's Lament," November 23]. It would seem that several people in the decision-making areas of the district have their collective heads up their asses when it comes right down to it. Another thing that strikes me as a huge drawback to getting locals down to the Landing is MetroLink. Recently I went to a concert at Mississippi Nights with my girlfriend. We both live close to U. City, so we hopped the train at Delmar and took it to the Landing. When the show was over, we headed back to the Eads Bridge for the return ride home. We were standing there for about 20 minutes before we realized that no trains had come through. We checked the schedule and sure enough, the last westbound train runs at 11:49 p.m.
What's that about? If you want people to come down to the Landing who are native St. Louisans and not just the tourists, there has to be decent, reliable public transportation. With most of the bars open until 3 a.m., what's the point in having trains stopping before midnight? We ended up taking a cab home that cost us $35. We chose not to drive down there simply for the hassle one encounters trying to get into the district, as well as the exorbitant price of parking, as well as the cobblestone streets. (Sure, they may seem quaint, but they're hell to drive on.)
As one who thinks public transit is vital to any revitalization efforts in any part of the city, I think Metro may bear a responsibility in helping get the Landing back on its feet. Other than that omission from your story, I think you very nicely explored the reasons that the Landing is floundering.
Tyson Blanquart, managing director
The NonProphet Theater Co.
Feel the love: Just wanted to congratulate Randall Roberts on a fabulous piece on Laclede's Landing. I've long wondered what the history of the place was, why it's so disappointing as a destination and what the future will hold for it, especially after the new casino gets up and running.
You did a fantastic job of mixing in local color, history, politics, societal issues. Really a compelling bit of writing. That's it. Kudos!