This Story is for the Birds

chickensWith the turkey eaten, and Christmas just ahead, it’s time for another of my favorite Suburban Journals stories, “Resident finds fowl something to cluck about.”


The South Side Rolling Stop

Stop signs

In a half-hour one Sunday afternoon, fifty westbound motorists on Fyler Avenue were spotted approaching a stop sign at Macklind Avenue. Only seven of them stopped, as in, their wheels stopped moving. Some of those apparently did so because traffic from Macklind stopped them from going forward. The others tapped their brakes with different degrees of firmness.

For what it’s worth, the forty-three tappers committed a crime. The city traffic code really does require drivers to stop at a stop sign. For those who aren’t sure of the meaning of “stop,” the code offers a definition: “‘Stop’ means the complete cessation from movement.

It’s one of the tales in the Second Edition of Hoosiers and Scrubby Dutch: St. Louis’s South Side. Most of the old favorites are back, guaranteeing this is a definite winner for the Hoosier or the Scrubby Dutch in your life.

You can get the new second edition at any bookstore or through the Internet. Or we can mail you an autographed copy for $21.50, tax and shipping included. That’s less than what Amazon charges for the book, handling and standard shipping.

Mail a check for that amount made out to Jim Merkel to Jim Merkel, 4216 Osceola St., St. Louis, MO 63116. Tell us how you want Jim to sign the book.stop sign

A Toast to Edna Gravenhorst

1-Edna-Campos-GravenhorstSaturday from 11 am to 2 p.m., I’ll be signing my books with my good friend Edna Campos Gravenhorst, for a joint book signing at the Walgreens at the corner of South Kingshighway Boulevard and Arsenal Street. She’ll be signing her new book: Famous Barr: St. Louis Shopping at its Finest. I haven’t looked at it yet, but I know its a splendid read.

Here’s what Jane Henderson of the Post-Dispatch wrote about her:

If you have money to buy a book from both of us, do so. But if you can only buy one, buy hers. You can buy mine later.


Does race affect traffic stops in West County?

cop pulls overDoes race play a part in traffic stops in West County? Statistics and the words of African Americans who drive in that area would seem to say so. But police officials in West County say there’s more to it.

West-News-Black-Logo-300x142In this article I did for the West Newsmagazine, I quote both sides and weigh in on how Ferguson might affect West County.

See me first thing Saturday morning


Here’s your chance to see me talk about the Second Edition of Hoosiers and Scrubby Dutch:

St. Louis’s South Side really early Saturday morning. I’ll be on “City Corner” with Steve Potter at 5:30 a.m. Saturday on KDNL Channel 30. If you’d rather not get up that early, here’s a link to the program.


Steve Potter