Happy In Bag

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Personal Space

After I selected a spot last night at the Shakespeare festival, I left to check out the nearby puppet show. When I returned fifteen minutes later, my lawn chair and cooler were surrounded by recent arrivals. These folks were practically on top of me. My incredulous stare and agitated banter went nowhere. I watched The Merry Wives of Windsor with a stranger's feet rubbing my shins and another freak's face eighteen inches from my rear end. The world is my oyster... and I'm claustrophobic!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Dodge That Kick

For one glorious moment I thought my dream had come true. I'd heard about the Sunday night kickball games at the Beaumont Club's outdoor space. But when I got my first glimpse of the action last night, I was momentarily overjoyed. I immediately identified the line of people against a fence as dodgeball players. Alas, they were merely waiting in line for their turn to bat in a relatively tame game of kickball. My opportunity to injure hipsters (and be injured by them) in the greatest of all playground games remains a dream deferred.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Kansas City Skinny

It's not a popular position, but I kind of like the extreme summer heat. My so-called sports injuries hurt a lot less when the temperature is over 99 degrees (this bank's LED contains only two digits). As a bonus, some of my excess padding melts away. I've coined a new phrase to match my slightly trimmer physique. "Kansas City skinny" means that a person is merely 10-20 pounds overweight. Relative to much of the area's populace, that means they're quite fit. It works like this: "I'd be considered fat in Los Angeles, but here at home I'm Kansas City skinny."

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Crummy Bob

The best-kept secret at Sandstone amphitheater is hiding in plain view. The Papa Bob's Bar-B-Que outlet has lifted my spirits during both of my visits to the Bonner Springs concert venue this month. Why stand in line to buy generic hot dogs and french fries when a delicious smoked turkey leg or spicy "Crummy Bob" sandwich can be had without much of a wait?

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Maui Wowee

Sugar salad- what a great idea! That was my initial impression of Maui Express' teriyaki bowls. Even broccoli is delicious when coated with sweet sauce. Much like Sweet Tomatoes, the modest establishment near Shawnee Mission West provides a healthier (and pricier) fast food alternative to burgers and burritos. Three prominent blogger-types offer detailed positive reviews at Yelp.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Muse of the Missouri

When my parents announced that our family would be moving to Kansas City they attempted to soften the blow by giving me a coffee table book about the town. I liked the pictures of the Chiefs, Royals, Kings and Scouts but it was the many images of topless women that sold my ten-year-old self on the idea of a new home. Decades later, I still catch myself checking them out.

Friday, June 12, 2009


Forget the art. Trust me- it's not difficult. The paintings and sculptures on display at The Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art may leave me largely unimpressed, but the structure itself is an entirely different matter. Airy and angular, the building on the campus of Johnson County Community College takes my breath away.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Majestic No More

The Star reports that The Majestic Steakhouse has permanently closed. As the curator of Plastic Sax, I have more than a passing interest when one of Kansas City's few remaining jazz venues is shuttered. I sensed trouble during my final visit to the establishment a couple months ago. I wanted the lunch special featured on the placard pictured here. The waitress couldn't comprehend my request. Sadly, I guess I wasn't the Majestic's only disgruntled patron.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Grab An Oar

Today's torrents of rain have turned everything topsy-turvy. Disoriented deer wander through busy intersections. Soaked diners camp out in fast food outlets. Police and security guards huddle nervously. It's equal parts party and panic.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Here Comes Santa Claus

I don't know what motivates humans to participate in zombie walks. I just know that the presence of walking corpses elevated my First Friday experience from merely fun to completely surreal.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Roast Flag

As an impressionable Cub Scout, I was indoctrinated with rigid rituals regarding the American flag. It didn't take. I didn't become one of those rabid flag-as-sacred-symbol people. Still, I'm growing increasingly irritated by a neighborhood fast food restaurant's ongoing neglect of its civic responsibility.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Tiny Town

While I love Kansas City, it can seem awfully insular. In the recent process of selecting new office space, I repeatedly bumped into personal and business associates. My blogging problem aside, I'm a private person. I prefer to work in anonymity. It's next to impossible in this town.