Thursday, June 28, 2007

Tkachuk..Deal or No Deal?

-Hockey thoughts first...

-I could not be more happy for Al MacInnis. The man from Nova Scotia will join the immortals in the Hockey Hall of Fame in November. Everyone knows he belongs. The sport is lucky to have someone that brings unending class and grace to it by his association with it. I'm proud to work in the same building as the Stan Musial of St. Louis hockey.

-What kind of deal will Keith Tkachuk settle for with the Blues. Seems to me that 3.5 million for two seasons is a pretty good chunk for a 35-year-old who wants to keep his family in St. Louis. No, he likely won't be able to win a Stanley Cup in those two years, but is that really Walt's priority? I guess we'll find out in the next few days.

Family/business updates...

-A bit of a tease to the upcoming music product from son Ian's rock group...Chassis... now available here

-Recently graduated son Stewart gets his first paid acting gig after college. Woo Hoo!! And it's a good starting place. The Chicago Shakespeare Theatre at Navy Pier. More info about Stew's first pro show here.

-Our ad agency...and my studio...are re-locating to new digs. We're taking up residence in a very nice space on the lower level of my friend Roger Wigginton's thriving clothing business....Don Rodgers Ltd. We're already receiving mail at 6727 West Main, Suite 1, Belleville, IL 62223. Put it in your rolodex or contact info.


-It seems the last place in this country where anyone could get away with playing the race card is in the entertainment industry. But, that didn't stop fired Grey's Anatomy actor Isaiah Washington from doing just that. Click here for details. Wow...either that production company has a problem...or Mr. Washington has a larger one.

-Speaking of race relations...that topic ate up a good portion of the time in the latest debate among the Democratic presidential candidates. I would expect that to continue all the way to election day because of the presence of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. He will not be able to avoid the constant scrutiny of his heritage...and she will hail herself as a champion of the downtrodden throughout whatever campaign either might have against the Republican candidate.

-Friend and colleague Mike Anderson rightly points out in a comment to my latest post that many of our age lost lives in southeast Asia in the 60's and 70's. I hope my comments didn't come off as overlooking Viet Nam-era veterans when writing about the bravery of the WWII era fighting man. My thoughts were more a reaction to the viewing of Band of Brothers than a comparative of the relative characters of the generations. Admiration and gratitude runs deep here for all who serve and have served.

-Paris Hilton...what's all the fuss?

-Two car bombs found in London. Three men being sought in the Birmingham area...a center of radical Islamic unrest in Britain. Religious differences may eventually be our planet's undoing. Or is our species smarter than that?

-The one Cardinals player who frustrates me the most is Scott Rolen. He has an enormous contract. He once was a player worthy of the big money. But he seems to be throwing a sure-shot Hall-of-Fame career down the outhouse opening. Always hurt. Rarely producing when he's not. Frustrating...very frustrating. But, I'll bet I'm not half as annoyed as Walt Jockety and Tony LaRussa.

-I was happy to provide the voiceover for an entry into this year's St. Louis portion of the 48-Hour Film Project. I was on-camera for colleague Tim Snider's winning entry..When Bags Attack.. last year. This year he produced an audience favorite...but not the big prize winner. If you'd like to take a look at this year's entry...Doer of Good...(you'll need a high-speed connection) here

-I'm still a big Chris Daughtry fan...and I'm very far from the only one. His post-American Idol career has been nothing short of amazing. Check out the latest news by clicking here.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Ketchup Time

-Sorry to see that the Blues are severing ties with captain Dallas Drake. Not because I think it's a bad player move...but because he's so universally loved and respected. Dally has taken much more physical abuse playing the game than most guys. And in the past year or so it seems to me his game has shown it. He didn't deliver the devastating hits with nearly as much regularity. And his overall game was just not there. He'll be missed...but I understand that youth is the key word around the Blues these days. Hard to say what I think about the Blues picks in the entry draft. At this point you just have to put your faith in the management and scouting people and believe they got the right guys. We'll know in a couple of years.

-Youngest son Stewart graduated with high honors from the Theatre School at DePaul on the 16th of this month. Now, the real world of trying to catch lightning in a bottle as a professional actor begins. He's already got a few gigs in the works. It's tough...but we believe Stew's got a real shot at great things. He's already great in our eyes...just a matter of catching "the break".

-Oldest son Ian is now based in Bowling Green, KY and is trying something equally as challenging. He's put together a rock band and will be spending the next few months writing songs that the group hopes to make popular through recordings and live performances. September is the target month for the begin live performances and have a CD ready to go commercial. Click the link above for the group's My Space page. No doctors or lawyers in my family. No sir. Not complainin'...just observin'. I'm happy that these young fellas feel empowered to pursue their creative dreams.

-If you haven't been to a Grizzlies game this year, you're missing it. New manager Phil Warren --> has put together a virtual "Murderer's Row" lineup...and they're tearing it up. In Sunday's game they hit back-to-back-to-back homers for the first time in franchise history. And just about everyone in the lineup is capable of "jacking one" in any at-bat. The pitching has been much better than what we saw in recent years...particularly the relief-pitching which has been outstanding. If you go to Grizzlies games just to have a good time, that's fine. But, there's also a really good baseball team playing at GCS Ballpark this year too.
-The Cardinals are tough to watch most nights...especially after treating us to a World Series championship...but because they play in a division with no outstanding teams, they are still very much in the hunt. When Carpenter comes back...and possibly Mulder...they'll have as good a chance as anyone to make the post-season. That's if they don't fall out of contention before then.

-On a recent weekend, seven revelers died while enjoying way too much beverage and boating at the Lake of the Ozarks. If we could only get our enemies to take a leisurely boat ride at Missouri's "Hoosier heaven" with a couple of cases of iced-up beer we wouldn't have to go to war.

-Who won the NBA championship? I missed that.

-For Father's Day, I was presented with an outstanding present by my family....the boxed set of the HBO mini-series, Band of Brothers. We've watched the first five episodes so far. It is still astounding to me how these extraordinary men of the World War II era went willingly (most volunteered) to war knowing they likely weren't coming back. Their commitment to the country and their families is almost beyond comprehension. The story of the paratroopers of Easy Company of the 101st Airborne Division (produced by Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks) should be required viewing in all high schools. How unbelievably lucky most of us are to have had fathers and grandfathers who grabbed a weapon and fought for our freedom...just because it was the right thing to do. Too bad most in our country seem to have no clue about that.