12/31/07

When good buildings go bad OR more hoosier contracting

I experience both embarrassment and horror when I drive by this building on Roger Pl.

Obviously two doors existed in the spaces the cinder blocks currently occupy. Perhaps the wood frames has rotted. I don't know. I do know this was a hideous solution.

12/30/07

Photos of my old store RE:GENERATION

I was going through some old files today and found these photos of my store. It was located at 3196 S. Grand next to the post office on Wyoming.

I opened it in 1998 and was there business for 3.5 years. One year into I started selling on eBay. I was making more money on eBay in a day than the store was producing in a week. I had a three year lease and dreamed of the day I could close and work out of my home. No overhead, no special tax license, employee, etc.

The name of the store referenced recycling (or upcycling as I prefer to call it) and was a place where I could display and sell a lot of what I was making at the time.

I've never missed owning a retail store.
I did met Chris (The Red Diamond).

That's one of my paintings in the background and I made the feathered Go-Go girl dresses towards the bottom left of the photo.

That's Chris on the left hand side wearing a vintage sterling silver mesh bracelet that I gave him when we were going steady.


Check out those dressing rooms! I miss them.

I made those white furry pants that guy is wearig.

TGS BLOG'S

Hey out there!
How do I enable links to work in my posts?
I'm such an amateur.

Here's a list of great blogs by TGS residents:

Artist, Musician and sheer fascination:
Bruk Longbottom

http://bruk66.blogspot.com/2007/09/custom-western-shirts.html
Her band Maid Rite
http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewprofile&friendID=62688381

Tower Grove Heights resident and Rehabber Mike Glodeck blogs about Making of a Parent:
http://glodeck.blogspot.com/

Rock star and Grand Mistress Knitter, Deborah Hyland
Some seriously hilarious reading!
http://www.ephemeralchaos.blogspot.com/
http://www.geocities.com/djeh_b/


Artist, musician and TGS block captain Gen Obata
http://www.genobata.com/


Garage, Punk, and Primitive Rock'n'Roll Podcast, Forums, and Links. By TGS resident, Jeff "Kopper" Kopp.
http://www.garagepunk.com/
And his blog,
http://kopper65.wordpress.com

Bill Streeter's award winning video blog:
http://lofistl.com/


Steve Wilke-Sharipo and guest writer's
Independent discussion of politics, development, and civic life in St. Louis' 15th ward.
Also, some great exposures appear here!
http://www.15thwardstl.org/

Word on the Street
Royale owner, Steve Smith's blog
http://stlstreets.com/

Zombie Squad
Local disaster preparation and community service charity with a twist of humor
http://zombiehunters.org/

12/23/07

Update on MARTI FRUMHOFF Memorial Garden in TGS


The plans for Matri's memorial are moving along!
Here's a link to the new plans provided by the City:
http://fundraisers4marti.blogspot.com/

As everyone knows, Marti made a huge positive impact on our Tower Grove South neighborhood and the Rehabbing community by starting the Rehabber's yahoo group. But that's only one small example of the contributions she made and not just to the city but to each of us personally.

Because of the Marti's Rehabber's group, I spun off a Yahoo group for TGS/H residents and independent business owners, http://groups.yahoo.com/group/TGSouth/ Marti was a TGH resident and hung out on our neighborhood group (she posted there much more than on Rehabber's)!

We currently have 298 members, have strengthened our Block Captains group as a result, organized the recent candle light vigil walk, and have become a stronger and more organized neighborhood because of Marti.

And, I simply must publicly thank Christopher Thiemet. Tim Klass and Peggy Hoelting for partnering on this memorial for Marti.

Christopher is the brain behind the web site.
Tim drew the original garden plans within seconds.
Peggy will be designing the garden.
Thanks to the many people who held mini fundraisers like Lynn Josse and Steve Wilke-Shaprio, state rep Mike Daus for making a contribution of 1,500.00 and everyone else who has contributed!

Please consider making a contribution to the memorial.
We accept donations via pay pal here: http://www.martifrumhoffmemorial.org/ and personal checks also!

More fundraisers are in the works for this project, I will update with info here as well as on the Rehabber's group

12/22/07

THE STAY WARM DRIVE - MANN SCHOOL

The Stay Warm Drive for the children of Mann School started a few years when I noticed children walking home from school on a cold day without hats, scarves, or gloves.

I posted a call for warm clothing to the Tower Grove South yahoo group and donations quickly arrived from neighbors in TGS.

I did a call again this year and was so proud of my neighbors! Over 12 large plastic bags stuffed full of new (store bought and still had the tags) clothing for the kids. Many of the bags were left anonymously on my porch.

I dropped off the bags this week and met the principal, Brian Zimerman.
He asked the kids for assistance unloading my car, I asked for photos and here's "Mr. Zimmerman" and the kids who arrived to help.

These are some seriously cute and studious children.
However, I am reminded of a quote from Fran Leibovitz: Stand firm in your refusal to remain conscious during algebra. In real life, I assure you, there is no such thing as algebra.

These girls get to bring their animals to school!


Entrance to the music room, leaded glass doors.

Music room

The students along with their music teacher, wrote and staged a play called RATS (with a nod to CATS).

As I was leaving I snapped this photo of shiny shoe worn by the school security guard.

12/21/07

CAR ELEVATORS

When I was but a wee lass, I listened as my grandfather talked abut a car elevator he saw while visiting Chicago. Its function was to make use of a small space to provide parking. It was difficult to visualize.

Recently I came across this photo in a book. In the lower right hand is a Burt's shoe store.
More on that later.



Do car elevators still exist?
I went to Google images and found this on an upscale NYC urban planning blog.
http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2007/05/high_line_cars_should_stay_on.html



And in Japan where space is at a premium, why waste space with a ramp when a turn table will suffice?

12/20/07

HEELS OVER HEAD IN LOVE

WOWSA!
My Christmas present from Bruk; hand knitted socks with a Southwestern color scheme (I loves me some turquoise).

Catch her here: http://bruk66.blogspot.com/


12/19/07

I'M A BRICK GEEK

Oh dear.

I dreamed about brick last night. I was walking along Gustine with Simon of Brick City (he's a stone mason and I've only met him once). I was very excited to show him some American Indian designs on the brick work of a house on 39 Potomac.

Not that such a house exists, I just dreamed it.
Sheesh.

Square 12 X 12 Paver Brick on Humphrey and Roger.

12/15/07

BEAU IN THE SNOW

THE OTHER SIDE OF THE TRACKS

This is a true story.

I take Beau over to the tracks under Morgan Ford to let him run. On this particular early spring day a train came chugging down the tracks. Beau was on one side of the train, I was on the other. Panicked that he would get hit, I tried to cross to his side. The train guys saw us and stopped the train so I could cross!

Then this guy mildly scolded me for being on private property.



This area was once a spur to the main tracks, the rails have been removed. Now it's a dumping area and a trail that I walk with Beau.


Beau's native name is Running Cloud.



This is a rural area in the heart of the Tower Grove South neighborhood that is progressively becoming one massive dump.


I stopped counting at fifty tires.




Looking west towards Kingshighway. Home Depot is on the left.



Looking east to the Morgan Ford Bridge.



Tree growing in retaining wall.
Just try to stop nature!



Graffiti is everywhere and sometimes with mysterious messages. Accompanying the uninspired graffiti, hundreds of empty paint cans.



Beaver.
Say this word and every adolescent boy giggles, grown men become focused and feminists scowl.



Stale horse


St Louis is just like Compton.
(Sure, cause no one changes their style of graffiti lettering)



My favorite:
Revenge. I know 2 much.






The red arrow points to a huge open field that is seldom used yet mowed. Sometimes I see people playing soft ball there. I'm guessing it's five acres.


Pumice rocks scored from along the tracks. Photo'd on a railroad tie.


Decades ago, quartz rocks were dumped along the tracks. I still find them under the newer granite and pumice (lighter to haul) that gets dumped.



I took these photos primarily for my friend Marti Frumhoff before her untimely death.

12/10/07

THE BAD GIRL'S HOME

A neighborhood landmark since 1895, the House of Good Shepherd was razed in 1969, to make way for the Zayre Plaza shopping center. The design of the Zayre Plaza formed a T with Zayre at the top of the T and other stores on all other sides.

During my college years, I worked at the So-Fro fabric store in the plaza. During the early to mid 70's, the plaza was still relatively safe but rapidly descended into a crime ridden area due to being mostly enclosed from view. So-Fro (bought out in the late 70's by Joanne fabric) moved along with the Kroger anchor store (at the bottom of the T.)

Prior to being razed, it was the House of the Good Shepherd, a vast red brick structure. Its eleven acre site was donated by Adolphus Busch, and proceeds from the sale of the old buildings at 17th and Chestnut Streets, together with a $75,000 legacy from Mrs. Winifred Patterson, enabled the erection of the massive building on Gravois. It was operated as a home and school for penitent females by the Sisters of the Good Shepherd. My sisters and I were often threatened with exile to this compound if we didn't 'behave.' It was an effective threat.

Never knowing it's official name as children, we referred to it as The Bad Girl's Home. This is a poor resolution photo of the original building, long before the surrounding neighborhood of TGS was built. And long before the massive 12 foot high chain link fence went up.

12/9/07

THRIFT STORE FINDS

There's never anything decent in the thrift stores in STL so once a week I high tail it over to the nether parts of IL where I can avoid the other dealers and pickers.

Scored last week - this signed Raymor box which unfortunately has a chip on the corner. DAMN. In mint condition it would sell for 150-200 clams on Ebay.

I paid 69 cents for it.




At first glance from six feet away I thought, Oh good, a box for Bruk!
Second glance from three feet, Vintage Italian!
Then I turned it over and saw the signature. Whoopee! Even with the chip it should sell.


I also found two framed prints by Jessie Arms Butke of cockatoo's and hibiscus. Too bad it wasn't an original canvas, I could retire.

I may have to keep them.


And this fabulous piece of prison art made of matchsticks (of course).


And a hefty piece of Scheurich pottery.