Thursday, September 30, 2010

Pic Today 9/30/10





MUM'S THE WORD

Hardy mums (chrysanthemums)
are readily available this time of year,
and are a great way to add color to the fall garden.

Mums have been heavily cross bred,
with a variety of flower heads --
traditional, pompom, button and daisy-like.
Colors range from white, yellow and gold,
to orange, red and purple.

It's best to buy compact plants with tight buds
so you can enjoy a long flowering season.

The flowers in some mum varieties can be pulverized,
and the pyrethrums contained within the seed cases
become a natural insecticide used safely in home and garden.

Asian markets offer dried mum flowers (usually white)
which can be boiled for chrysanthemum tea,
a treatment for flu symptoms.


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Pic Today 9/29/10


WHY WAS THIS STAINED GLASS ART
PAINTED OVER AND HIDDEN FOR 52 YEARS?

Look close . . . what was so objectionable
about this commissioned stained glass piece
that it was immediately painted over
when displayed at the grand opening
of the Fox Theater in 1929?

(HINT: Nice girls don't smoke.)

The fact that the lady was holding a cigarette
was so abhorrent and immoral at the time,
the Fox was pressured into covering this
ladies room decoration with a thick coat of paint.
Not until the theater was saved and restored,
some 52 years later in 1981, was the original
stained glass piece discovered and carefully unmasked
to its original and magnificent state.
(It is now illuminated and part of the formal
"ladies lounge" on the mezzanine level.)

In 1921, a bill was proposed in U.S. Congress to
ban women from smoking in public.
(It was narrowly defeated.)

In 1928, the American Tobacco Company hired Edward Bernays
(known today as the "father of public relations")
to make smoking acceptable for women.
In 1929, Bernays hired women to smoke their
"torches of freedom" as they walked in the
Easter Sunday Parade in New York City.

We've come a long way, baby!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Pic Today 9/28/10




"CITY GARDEN"
AUDIO ART TOUR
ON YOUR PHONE!

Learn about some fabulous sculpture
from world famous artists
while you tour the 3-acre "City Garden"
in downtown St. Louis . . .

Visitors take self-guided tours and
listen to famous St. Louisans talk about
the 24 outdoor sculptures as well as
the artists behind them, all from their phone.

Strollers here learn about George Rickey's
"Four Rectangles Oblique IV" . . .
and Tom Otterness' "Kindly Gepetto"
as Pinocchio reaches for the skyscrapers above.

A very innovative and entertaining way to learn
about our unique urban oasis of art . . .
experience this entertaining and eductional tour
on your mobile phone. Just dial (314) 802-9571.

"City Garden" is located between 8th & 10th Streets,
in the mall, between Market and Chestnut Streets.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Pic Today 9/27/10




ARE PENGUINS
STEALING OUR HEARTS?

There's a fascination with penguins these days.
First it was March of the Penguins that stole
our hearts at the theater . . . then computer games
like Penguin Fever and Penguin Mania . . .

now I see bumper stickers with curious messages, like
"ONE BY ONE, THE PENGUINS STEAL MY SANITY."

Yes, they're extremely cute.
Yes, they sleep standing up.
Yes, they're birds that can't fly.
Yes, they mate for life.

But what's with this penguin obsession, already?





Sunday, September 26, 2010

Pic Today 9/26/10



LAST DAY
TO PET A RAY

TODAY is the last day
to pet (or feed) a sting ray
at St. Louis Zoo's Caribbean Cove.

Most animals enjoy the cooling days of autumn
at the St. Louis Zoo, but the sting rays can't handle
the cold at all . . . so they're shipped south for the winter.
So if you want to take the kids to pet a sting ray
(their skin is rough, like sand paper),
or hand feed them
(they love shrimp cocktail),
you better head for the zoo TODAY.

The 17,000-gallon salt water Caribbean Cove exhibit
closes for the winter, starting tomorrow.
(It will open again next April.)




Saturday, September 25, 2010

Pic Today 9/25/10





MICHAEL EASTMAN
"MASTER ARTIST SERIES"
PHOTO EXHIBIT AT C.O.C.A.

Famed photographer, Michael Eastman, has opened
"Snapshot" -- his curated exhibit of
ten St. Louis photographers -- at COCA
(Center Of Creative Arts.)

Area photographers participated in a workshop
taught by Eastman, with selected works on
exhibit through November 14.
COCA is located at 524 Trinity Avenue
in University City (off Delmar).

This series launches COCA's "Master Artist Series"
of workshops with established St. Louis artists
in a variety of media.

Eastman's own work is part of the display --
window scenes from within the old
St. Louis Globe Democrat building.
(Well worth a visit to the COCA gallery.)

Friday, September 24, 2010

Pic Today 9/24/10






THE FABULOUS FOX

The glory of a bygone era is restored
at the fabulous Fox Theater.

Thanks to Mary Strauss (and husband Leon, now deceased)
for recognizing this grand old theater, in a state of disrepair,
and saving it from the bulldozer in 1981.
(It came so close to being demolished.)

The Fox was built in 1929, for $6-million,
primarily for Vaudeville shows and silent movies,
and closed its doors in 1979.

It contains one of the world's most magnificent
pipe organs (still working) which rises magically
from the orchestra pit. All of the original interiors
and decorations have been restored to their original splendor.
It took Mary's vision, one-year of dedicated restoration and
$2-million to have the Fox re-open in 1982.

Broadway musical productions and world class
performers fill the Fabulous Fox throughout the year.
(Anyone remember Stan Kan playing at the "mighty Wurlitzer?")


Thursday, September 23, 2010

Pic Today 9/23/10





PERSONALIZE
YOUR PUMPKIN

Here's a great seasonal gift idea . . .
personalized pumpkins, gourds or watermelons!

C J Sanders @ CJ's Produce, Kirkwood Farmers Market,
will sculpt and carve a personalized pumpkin
with a name, logo or school emblem.

For birthdays, centerpieces, or special occasions,
CJ will carve just about anything.
How about a Mizzou Tigers watermelon
or Rams pumpkin for your next tailgate party?

Call CJ and he'll start carving for YOU.
(314) 825-5621

You can watch CJ do his carving magic
at the St. Louis Art Museum,
Wednesday, October 27.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Pic Today 9/22/10





THE GOLDEN SHADES
OF AUTUMN

Happy First Day of Fall.

The days get shorter now
and the greens of summer turn to gold.


Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Pic Today 9/21/10








WHO'S GOT THE BEST
GOOEY BUTTER CAKE
IN TOWN?

We all know the best gooey butter cake
comes from St. Louis.
And Monday, Iron Chef Michael Symon
came to town to tape one of his new upcoming shows,
Food Feuds, to decide who makes the best.

The TV crew filmed the competition at Kiener Plaza
with loyal fans and patrons from each "kitchen" . . .
Park Avenue Coffee vs. Gooey Louie Cakes.
On hand were proprietors Dale & Marilyn from Park Avenue,
and Debbie & Kirk from Gooey Louie.

And the best gooey butter cake Food Feuds award
goes to . . . .

(Tune in to Food Feuds with Michael Symon
on Food Network, December 2, 9:00 pm!)

Monday, September 20, 2010

Pic Today 9/20/10



DOGWOODS
START THE FALL SHOW

Flowering dogwood trees begin the fall show,
with the earliest shades of leafy red
and bright crimson berries.

Dogwood berries are a favorite food of birds,
but are quite toxic to humans.
It's tempting to think they'll last till December
for holiday decorations, but don't bother gathering
because they'll shrivel and shrink quickly.
(Best to wait for holly berries later this season.)

The flowering dogwood is Missouri's state tree.




Sunday, September 19, 2010

Pic Today 9/19/10






KIRKWOOD GREENTREE FESTIVAL
50 YEARS AND GOING STRONG

Kirkwood celebrates its 50th anniversary
Greentree Festival this weekend,
with perfect weather, folk life artisans
and a great line up of regional musicians.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Pic Today 9/18/10




TWO BEAUTIFUL REASONS
TO SHOP AT
KIRKWOOD FARMERS MARKET

Meet Chelse and Amber.
They're at CJ's Produce TODAY
at Kirkwood Farmers Market.

They'll help you shop and choose
the freshest seasonal produce,
including locally farmed zucchini, tomatoes,
concorde grapes, pumpkins, squash, gourds, and
the largest apples you've ever seen.
(Ask them about new crop Eckert's apple cider.)

They'll help you select seasonal plants
and flowers for the fall season, too.

Their bright smiles, fresh produce and flowering plants
are the reasons we like shopping at Farmers Markets.
And talk about dedicated market people . . .

Check out Chelse's tattoo!
("Home Grown Market Life" forever.)

Friday, September 17, 2010

Pic Today 9/17/10


GOLDEN FLOWER
OF FALL

Unmistakable goldenrod adds yellow
to the landscape this time of year,
and is under-appreciated
(except of course by pollinating insects.)

Goldenrod is unfairly blamed for
causing hay fever in humans.
Its pollen is far too heavy and sticky
to be blown far from its flowers,
but it's a fat meal for most bees.

Thomas Edison experimented with goldenrod
to produce rubber, which it contains naturally.
The tires on Edison's Model T, given to him
by his friend Henry Ford, were made from
100% goldenrod rubber.
(The invention of synthetic rubber in WW-II
ended goldenrod's cultivation for rubber.)

There's an old saying in the Midwest:
"When goldenrod blooms, it will soon be time
to go back to school."

True enough!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Pic Today 9/16/10





POMEGRANATE COCKTAIL
ANYONE?

Here's a fun way to celebrate
the arrival of pomegranates --
(they're in season now) --
TRY A POMEGRANATE COCKTAIL!

You'll need one fresh pomegranate,
and a bottle of your favorite bubbly
(sparkling apple juice, champagne,
even club soda, something with bubbles.)

Cut open a pomegranate. Peel back the skin
and remove the seeds (avrils). Rinse them
in water, removing the white pulp, and
spread them on a towel to dry.
(NOTE: You can freeze the extra seeds.
There are about 600 seeds in each fruit.)

Pour a glass of your favorite bubbly, and add
10-20 seeds to the glass. Normally, pomegranate
seeds will sink to the bottom, but the bubbles
cling to each seed making them bob up and down.
(Some call this a "Lava Lamp Cocktail.")

Don't be afraid to chomp on the seeds between sips.
Each seed pops with a delicious burst of
sweet pomegranate juice.

Delicious . . . festive . . . and absolutely
loaded with vitamins and anti-oxidants.


Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Pic Today 9/15/10





WHY ARE DAIRY BARNS
WHITE? *

From 1900 to 1940, many large dairy farms
were built throughout Missouri,
and are still in use today.
The primary barn has an attached silo
for animal feed, and lofty "gambrel" roofs
to maximize the size of the hayloft.

The design of these barns,
almost always painted white,
offers maximum ventilation for cow comfort,
and room for efficient handling of manure,
hay and feed, and modern milking equipment.

After all, comfortable, contented cows
produce the sweetest milk. And white barns
reflect the sun's heat, keeping the barn cool.

*ANSWER: So we know they're dairy barns!
(Anyway, milk is white, right?)