Love and Hope and Sex and Dreams

As anyone who has read my blog over the past year or so knows, I try to keep my posts short while I explore the deeper meaning of things. A music review or thoughts about running are portals to ways I make sense of the world around me. Since I launched the blog in...

Keep On Rockin' in the Joe Town

In the late 1970s, my hometown of St. Joseph, Missouri, was a hotbed of pop music criticism. The reason was two young reporters at the St. Joseph News-Press and Gazette, Conrad Bibens and Terry Jordan. For a couple of years, I faithfully clipped their album and...

Great Scott! Novel Reopens Landmark Court Case

I wrote this review of a novelization of the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case Scott v. Sandford several years ago for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, but it never appeared in the paper. The book is Two Men Before the Storm: Arba Crane’s Recollection of Dred Scott and the...

No Stone Unturned

My Freshman year of college, I wrote a journal entry for English class that started, "I have been a Stones fan forever." That may have been hyperbole, but it is true that I–like millions of others–have never lived in a world without the Rolling Stones....

Reading on Empty

My sister taught me how to read the summer before kindergarten. Not so remarkable for lucky kids these days who have access to academically progressive preschool programs, but in the '70s it marked me as advanced. I still remember the Sunday night my mom got a call at...