-No I didn't fall off the planet. Just had a whirlwind of a last couple of weeks. Time to catch up.
-Many thanks to the St. Louis Blues. Thanks to my long-time, part-time employer, Barb and I celebrated our 30th anniversary last week with the team in Toronto. (Bernie Miklasz mentioned it in his Bernie Bits this past weekend) From start to touchdown back in St. Louis, it was a great trip. The classy way in which we were treated was certainly befitting of the love I have for the wonderful woman who has shared her life with me since '78. Many thanks to Dave Checketts, John Davidson, Larry Pleau, Peter McLoughlin, and all others in team management who signed off on our adventure. Special thanks to Mike Caruso, the Blues VP of Public Relations, for taking such great care of the "extra members" of the team entourage. Another round of special thanks to Andy Murray who greeted us after we boarded the team charter with a very warm welcome. I was doubly impressed by coach Murray's greeting which included Barb's first name and a few facts that indicated that he had "done his homework" on us. Very impressive man. It's easy to see why he's succesful as a coach and at being a human. Another special thanks to Bernie Federko. The Hockey Hall-of-Famer made sure we had VIP passes to get into The Hall. An impressive place for an impressive man to be enshrined. It was only a two-day trip, but one Barb and I will never forget. The whole thing was proof to me once again that hockey people are the best in sports. (Photo above from pre-game warm-ups at Air Canada Centre prior to the Blues 3-2 win over the Leafs)
-Time to brag once again on the acting exploits of our son Stewart. The reviews for Stew's performance in Thrill Me-The Leopold and Loeb Story have been spectacular. Nearly every media outlet that has reviewed the show has been effusive with praise for our talented young fellow. Thrill Me opened on January 26th to sold-out houses at Hollywood's Hudson Backstage Theatre. The show is a two-man musical based on the real-life story of Nathan Leopold and Richard Loeb, the teenage "thrill killers" hailing from wealthy families in suburban Chicago. For those unfamiliar, Google Leopold-Loeb and there's all kinds of internet material on it. Seems like strange subject matter for a musical. But audiences and critics are apparently eating it up. Stephen Dolginoff, the composer/writer of the show actually starred in it himself off-Broadway a few years back. Stewart is in the west coast premiere of the show and plays the Leopold part which Dolginoff originated in New York. Dolginoff has already been to see the L.A. show and "thrilled" the cast by going out to dinner and drinks with them afterward. Stewart told us he was enormously impressed with Mr. Dolginoff and deeply appreciated his time with him. Back to the bragging... here are some excerpts from the various reviews of Stewart's performance...
“You won’t forget Stewart W. Calhoun’s fierce performance” — Hollywood Reporter
“Calhoun and Schemmer are convincingly boyish…and deliver wrenching performances “— LA Times
“Calhoun brings some real emotion...and demonstrates a strong voice” — Variety
“Calhoun is pure perfection...proves himself an actor/singer of depth and power” — LAStageScene.com
“Calhoun has a splendid voice that could easily scale much bigger shows” — CurtainUp.com
Stewart is in the process of taking some of these notices and turning them into promotional material to put in the hands of potential future employers. He has already gotten a few "feelers" from Hollywood show-biz types. Let's all keep our fingers crossed that someone in a position to do so gives our guy the chance he's looking for. You know, it's all about networking in "the biz".
-Well...we have a new member of our family since I last wrote here. Since our dear Springer Spaniel Fergie died back in July, we've been open to the idea of adding another doggie to the mix. We wanted a smaller dog....and preferably one that needed to be rescued. That combination isn't the easiest to make happen. But thankfully we came across Chihuahua Rescue of St. Louis. After visiting with several potential candidates, and being carefully screened by the Chihuahua Rescue folks ourselves, a match was made. Little "Maya" (pictured) came home to live with us a few days ago. She's all of 4-1/2 pounds. This little cutey has been a puppy-mill dog for her first five years. Sad to think she spent most of her time in a cage up 'til now. But she's already getting "heapin' helpin's" of love and affection from her new family. We're looking forward to having her around for a long time.
-The Super Bowl was not nearly as high-scoring as I expected. But it was one of the more fun games to watch in a while...mostly because of all that New England had riding on it. I was conflicted as to how I wanted it to end. For some reason, I found myself wanting the Pats to make history...but I also enjoyed the upset by the Giants. Obviously, I didn't have any money on the game. I'm kinda hoping the Patriots get exposed as spies and cheaters which would make the Rams Super Bowl loss in '03 hurt a little less. Maybe they'll even take away the Pats title that year if enough damaging evidence turns up. Well, one can hope.
-Looks like John McCain has a pretty good stranglehold on the GOP nomination after Super Tuesday. But the Hillary/Obama battle looks like it will go on for awhile. The Dem convention might be pretty interesting this summer.
-I thought the news organizations might have learned something in the last election when they called a bunch of races too early. But nooooooooo. AP called Missouri for Hillary only to have Obama bring in KC and StL to come from behind. Pretty soon the projections will have about as much value as a three-dollar bill.
-St. Louis weather is always a little strange...but this stuff we've had in the last week...in early February??? Whoaaaa...
-Said hello to Jeff Woywitka in the hall before the Blues game with Tampa Bay. This right after he showed two people I took to be his parents to the VIP elevator. Nice Alberta kid. I hope he sticks with the team this time. He's had a very strong season at Peoria this year.
-Sounds like Heath Ledger had enough prescription drugs around to start his own pharmacy. What a terrible experience for the family he leaves behind. Accidental overdose?? OK..how did we determine that when nobody else was around?