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Showing posts from May, 2005
Hammons Field

Baseball Downtown

I know this site is dedicated to whining and complaining about life in Springfield, but the obvious fact remains that we're still here, so there must be something good to say about this place (despite the fact that it's heavily populated by super-conservative, judgemental, right-wing, pro-lifer Christian Republican types) . . . and now, I have the definitive answer.

It's baseball.

I took my daughter to a Springfield Cardinals baseball game at Hammons Field last week, and I realized that my town has finally come of age. Firmly planted in the center of town, we now have a beautiful jewel of a baseball field that lights up the summer nights - and we have a real team, the Springfield Cardinals.

The food was great, the game was exciting, the fans cared about the outcome, the field was perfect as only a well-manicured baseball field can be . . . and I had to pinch myself. Am I really in Springfield?

I almost have to choke to get this out, but thanks John Q.

Middle School Mind

A student in a middle school Exploratory class asked a provocative question last week. It was newspaper day, a day to catch up on current events. The teacher limits them to the "A" section, which is mostly national and international news. There was, of course, a headline about the war in Iraq, something about how the carnage was getting worse.

Nobody knew the word carnage, so it became the word of the day. On the blackboard in big letters, carnage. One of the students grabbed a dictionary and read to the class, "Carnage, the slaughter of many people." Ew, slaughter.

"So, exactly why is our army in Iraq?" That was the question. And the teacher, who had always prided himself in being open and honest with this inquisitive group of middle school anarchists, was on the spot.

He took them back to the year many of them were born. In 1991, the United States, under the leadership of George Bush the elder, sent some 140,000 American trooops to Kuwait to push back an I…

Faith & Finances

The Ozarks Angel ran across an interesting piece of promotional material from one of Springfield's most influential and affluent businesses the other day. The slick new publication, only in its second year, is entitled Faith and Finances, Directing God-Given Resources to God-Given Goals.

The Assemblies of God puts this thing out and sends it to ministers and churches in an effort "to be the preferred provider of superior integrated financial services to Assemblies of God churches, affiliated ministries, ministers, and laity distinguished by a commitment to biblical stewardship."

Shew. Somebody worked hard on that one - and my, how the language of the church has changed over the years, and note the lower case 'b' in biblical. That's new. But it all makes sense. The more money the faithful make as faithful stewards, the more tax free income the church gets. And you can forget about the image of the collection plate - now tithes are automatically deducted from che…

Ashcroft Estates

There is a new subdivision in North Springfield. Ashcroft Estates - named after Springfield's favorite son.

That's right. If you would like the comforts of Ozarks living along with repressed sexuality, imagined persecution and trumped up paranoia, Ashcroft Estates is the place for you.

Located North on Grant past I-44 and Hillcrest High School, Turn Right (of course) on Farm Road 96 and follow to Farm Road 159.

You can't miss it. Look for the fully-clothed, flag draped statues! Starting at $144,000.

Police Ethics, an Oxymoron?

There was an interesting article in the News-Leader this week about how Springfield police chief Lynn Rowe felt it necessary to bring in an outside consultant as "a second pair of eyes" to watch over a rather sticky internal affairs matter at SPD. Internal affairs is investigating how the routine drug bust of Mayor Carlson's son, Thomas, was put on a fast track so that the results from the state crime lab would beat the April election deadline. There was no apparent reason why a routine investigation like this would warrant fast track status.

Mayor Carlson, who had opposed a police pay increase in recent months, has not been a favorite over at headquarters, and county prosecutor Darrell Moore smelled something fishy when he received a probable cause statement the day before the mayoral election. He elected to withhold charges for a couple of weeks, and Carson easily won re-election.

Chief Rowe was clearly rankled by Moore's insinuation that somebody over at SPD headqua…

Epididymiserable, Part II

I stepped into the ultrasound room and was instructed by Brunhilda to change out of my clothes into one of those tacky hospital gowns. "The opening is in the back. Just put your arms through the holes and tie it in back," she said. Great, another humorless nurse, this one with man hands that look like they could crush walnuts into fine dust.

The bathroom was frigid. I left my socks on in hopes that a tiny bit of insulation against the cold floor would be just enough to keep my rapidly contracting scrotum from displacing my genitals into the intestinal tract. What had I done to deserve this? I asked myself.

I opened the door slowly and saw the hulking image of my nurse slumping on a stool while gazing intently into a monitor. She tapped at a keyboard, adjusting the ultrasound device. The blue glow cast her face in a particularly sinister light. I suddenly felt as though I were in a Mel Brooks movie. "Just lay down on the table and place this towel under your scrotum so tha…

Epididymiserable

The epididymis is a long, tightly coiled tube that lies behind each testicle. It mainly collects sperm made by the testicles, which seems simple enough. However, when the epididymis becomes infected - this can happen for no good reason or can be sexually transmitted - there is severe pain, swelling of the scrotum, fever and general malaise due to the fact that your balls ache and you can't have sex for a good long while.

Today, I sit listing slightly to the left as I type out these notes. What a predicament! The doctor, a woman, says, "If you were a younger man, I'd have you tested for chlimydia." Well, I took that as an afront. What did she mean? If I were a younger man . . . did she mean that since I'm 54 I couldn't possibly be sexually active? I could get climydia, damn it! Anyway, I don't have climydia (can't spell it either). Been with the same lovely woman for quite a while, and although she may now find my oversized nut a bit of a putoff, I thin…