Ghost Writer

I am the ghost writer for Katrina. Hmmm? What would I write about if I were Katrina. I might write about my two beautiful daughters, and soccer games and dance recitals and student government assignments. I might write about that. Or I might write about my kitchen, my beautifully remodeled kitchen. Don’t get me started. I don’t think I’d like to write about my kitchen right now.

my boss
Me and my boss and a really nice party.
I shall write about my boss. She is the best boss in all of the land. If there were a real mirror, mirror on the wall, my boss would be voted the fairest of them all. I just really like my boss. She’s wonderful really. And pretty. And smart. I think that I will get her something really nice for her birthday and for Christmas and for Bosses Day too. Did I mention how pretty and smart my boss is? I really enjoy writing about my boss.

I am the ghost writer for Katrina. What shall I write about?

Visions of Paradise

Rainy days are such prime stretches for quiet reflection that I can’t believe poems ever get written in the sunshine. These are the days I love to take a nap, or visit a bookstore. If I could take a nap in a bookstore on a rainy day, after some quiet reflecting, that would be a beautiful thing.

One of the books I have hauled up the stairs to my new office is a fairly recent acquisition called “Visions of Paradise.” It was produced by the sharp, photo-loving folks at National Geographic. I love several things about this book. It does have striking pictures. It has really good captions too — which are really small poems (or should be). And I love that I purchased this big beautiful book for $2.46 off a discount rack. And while it is full of beautiful images from very exotic places I will likely never go — the thing I love most about the book are the handful of images that aren’t very striking maybe, and aren’t in exotic places at all — but they are included because they are the place the photographer loves to be most of all. That is paradise for them.

My favorite example is a spread on pages 216 and 217. It’s a photo of an older man holding a big largemouth bass. The light is almost gone, the subject looks barely willing to pose (or at least a long way from excited) the color is wretched and it’s blurry. Like, I just learned how to use a camera blurry.

But it’s the photog’s father in the picture. And they are standing in the last of the light in the backyard of his childhood home after a remarkable day of fishing. The fish is an exceptional specimen — about as large as any bass I’ve ever caught. And his father is proud of his catch, clearly. Being there, with him, after a day on the water, was as close to paradise as he could get. I think I understand that.

Several years ago I wrote a poem about a man who was my neighbor at the time. He has since passed on. We had one talk in his living room where he told me about a place he had been and always wanted to go back. It was his vision of paradise, he told me in his own way.

I think most of us harbor something, or someplace or maybe even somebody like that.

One of mine is a small river in central Florida. My family vacationed there when we could afford to and we loved it. The water was spring fed, very cold and very clear. You could see all the way to the bottom, even 40, 50 feet down and more. Schools of mullet and sheepshead fish, alligators, snapping turtles, great blue herons and manatees all thrived in and around the river. It was a magic, wonderful and happy place for me and my family.

On my honeymoon, my wife and I stopped and stayed the night close to this river and spent the next morning kayaking down it. It was a glorious morning and a wonderful time. But it wasn’t at all what I remembered in many ways. It was smaller than I had made it to be, and I learned something that feels very important to me now — our visions of paradise are too small. That, and we can’t ever go back. Not really.

So at some point, we must look forward. Which is where I want to leave off with this entry: where would you most like to go?

Digital Signs

So what do you think of all of the new digital sign boards around campus? We are busy creating new templates for localized content and new video and motion graphics for display. So tell us, what do you want to see on the signs? What content do you find the most helpful or the least? Give us your suggestions!

5 Restaurants around St. Louis

Ok on my way into work today I was trying to figure out my top 5 favorite restaurants in St. Louis. Then I realized. I need help finding better places to eat. So I am going to do my first blog post on my lackluster 5 favorite places I have ate at in St. Louis.


  1. Old Spaghetti Factory- ok this was easily tops on my list. I have been to many spaghetti places and this is my favorite so far.  We called ahead and didn’t have to wait to be seated on a Saturday night. Then the best part was that we got bread, soup or salad, Iced tea, and ice creams included with are meal! Oh I guess the meal was tasty also.
  2. Pasta House in University City- Ok I almost forgot this place from my list because I couldn’t remember the name of it. Thanks Jeff Miller for taking me here. This was the first place in St. Louis that I ate at. The food was good the service was nice. I felt like the greeter at the door was my Great grandma. I picture this place as dinner in a true Italian family “Jersey Shore Style.”
  3. Cheese Cake Factory- Ok this gets such a high ranking because I love Cheesecake and where else would you get cheesecake than from the cheesecake factory. I have been to this restaurant in many different cities, so I use it as my safe choice when I want good food and don’t know where to go.
  4. My Own Kitchen-Well since I trained at Le Cordon Bleu Culinary School I have extensive knowledge in omelet creating. So that is why this lands at the number 3 spot. Also I was bored this past Saturday morning as I was watching my morning cartoons. I decided to get up and make breakfast. I made maybe the best omelet ever green peppers, cheese, sausage, ham, and extra bacon. Just going to end with YUMMY!
  5. Orange Leaf- Ok I’m not a big sweets eater so I didn’t know if I wanted ice cream or frozen yogurt or what ever those healthy people like to call it to make you want to eat their ice cream that’s going to stop your heart. Sorry for going on a rant but I was disturbed because its suppose to be healthy for you and they trick you by giving you the biggest bowl you can find and say fill it up. So of course your eyes are bigger than you tummy. And you make the biggest bowl you can. Oh next, they say your not done were going to give you every candy bar and unhealthy product on the market to add to your mountain of ice cream. Then we will give you every piece of gummy candy you can buy at Costco. To top all of that off we will weigh your bowl and that’s how much you have to pay. You sneaky monkeys… You could of let me know I was paying $12 for this mountain of heart attack I am about to eat. ……. Ok back to what I was saying it was good still after all of that so it made the list. Now I know eat in moderation.
  6. Imo’s Pizza- Ok this place made this list by default just so I can go on a rant about it. Sorry to anyone from St. Louis or if you like this place but it was way to rich of a taste. I had two little squares and had to drink a whole glass of water. I am from Chicago where we have real Pizza!! The only two positives was they delivered to my house and it tasted a lot better the next day for lunch after that rich sauce or cheese had soaked into the crust.

Ok so I guess I will end here and hope someone can give recommendations to places to go eat now!! I cant wait!!

New Blog Tagline

If you haven’t noticed, we are currently in process of revamping/reviving our department blog. I’d like to suggest we change the tagline of it, and we’d like some audience participation. For those currently unaware of what a tagline is, it’s the line directly below the title of our blog. Currently it says, “Maryville University’s Interactive Media Group”. I’m going to throw a few out there and you guys make some suggestions in the comments.

Sorry, those are the best ones I’ve got! Post your suggestions in the comments.

Secluded Lunch Location

Maryville Center outdoor dining

So I was running along the trails today and came to the end of the trail in Maryville Center and found these little tables. I’ve been enjoying the opportunity to getting out and explore more of the campus and the surrounding area. There is all kinds of stuff to check out. If you click on the photo, it will take you to my flickr page and you can view on the map where these benches are located.

I’m not sure who is responsible for the cleanup, but the tree limbs in the background are covering the back two tables. Maybe one of these days I’ll come out with a portable hand saw and clean up some of the dead tree limbs covering the trails.