5 things on my mind: Busch Stadium attendance, red light runners, and my favorite Batman

Sometimes, things aren’t exactly how they seem.

For example, just because your beagle looks like he is going through hell, remind yourself that those dogs are always hungry. You may see someone twisting his forehead into a knot at the grocery store, but he probably just can’t get a hold of his wife for that last item on the list.

Speaking of that, is it impossible for people to compose a grocery list and NOT add to it at the store? Just about. While we wonder about that probability, let’s ruminate on a few other things that aren’t as they merely appear.

5) Busch Stadium attendance

This morning, the Cardinals woke up ranking 6th in the Major Leagues in average home attendance. This dispels the rumors that Cardinal Nation isn’t alone in not flocking back to the ballpark for games. In case you’ve lived under a rock since July, but the delta variant took away that short-lived freedom we experienced in May when the mask mandates dropped. It was just too soon, because COVID-19 isn’t done swinging yet. People who don’t get vaxxed are more likely to transmit the disease but if you tell certain people that, they freak out as if you just said their house burned down. It’s weird and not ending anytime soon. Just remember: Attendance is down at Busch, but it’s down EVERYWHERE.

4) Red Lights still mean stop, asshole

Seeing this tweet this morning was distressing.

When I was an Uber driver a few years back, this happened to me. I was stopped at the intersection of Bates and Gravois, waiting to descend further into the city for drunk Soulard pickups. The light changed and as I eased out into the street, a large truck came BLOWING through the intersection. If I had launched out into the street more aggressively, you wouldn’t be reading this. End of story. No hyperbole required. Red lights mean stop. Now only if police in the city would stop loitering behind cars for long stretches late at night and actually enforce the law. It’s important to remember the cops work for us. Their job is to PROTECT and SERVE us.

The job isn’t supposed to be easy but if they start at reducing red light violations, maybe a few lives can be saved. To the people who keep running these things, you’re an asshat. What’s the issue? You can’t wait an extra few minutes to get there. Deep down, it’s just a resistance to authority. People don’t want to be told what to do, like get a vaccine to save lives or stop at that light to save lives. It’s just too much for their “never made the varsity team” mentality to digest.

3) Live television will never cease being a terrifying thrill

“You’re on” are two words that spark an adrenaline rush. Each of the last two Fridays, I have appeared on Fox 2’s lifestyle show, “Studio STL,” with Chelsea Haynes. She’s great: charismatic, outgoing, and so easy to talk to. But that doesn’t take the nerves away from doing live television–even if it’s only for five minutes or less. The camera stand moves around like Wall-E as I sit in my chair and stare at the glass rooms full of monitors and soundboards. People with rolled up papers in their hands and fingernail bite-clippings bouncing off their shoes. Time is money and there’s no sense wasting it. Live TV makes radio work seem like an apples/oranges conversation.

BUT… I love doing it. If you know any local business that wants publicity on one of the most popular news stations in the Midwest, hit me up.

2) Christian Bale is my Batman

It’s National Batman Day. I had no idea these things existed. Burger Day, Taco Day, Beer Day, Skittles Day. It’s getting out of hand.

Bale captured all the inner torture, nobility, and vulnerability that made the character special to me. Having Christopher Nolan at the helm sure helped, but Bale is such an incredible actor. Like Daniel Craig and Robert Downey Jr, he was a great actor before he played an iconic role. That’s the secret, a formula being followed with the latest Batman: Robert Pattinson.

Bale got it, creating a riveting Bat and a thought-provoking Wayne. His best work isn’t even in “The Dark Knight.” It was “The Dark Knight Rises” that showed off the actor’s dual-sided ability to break into that guy’s persona. Watch all three films again, and you will agree with me.

George Clooney, Ben Affleck, and Val Kilmer all knew they were climbing into shit scripts. Michael Keaton was solid, but not as good as Bale.

1) Winning helps a lot of things, just ask the Cardinals

People are so surprised when winning baseball games lifts up a fan base. Cardinals Twitter is more pleasant these days for one reason: the team is fucking winning. Unlike a few weeks ago, when the wildcard berth seemed as easy to get to as a small cabin in the woods. The season may have started in April, but the Birds didn’t show up in the standings until September. It’s like they set their clocks to Paul Goldschmidt’s bat, which usually picks up when the temperature does. Just another occurrence of baseball making you smile and wince inside four months. That’s the eternal trick of this game: right when you think you’re out, it pulls you back in!

But they can’t slow down. The last few wins have been thrilling but there’s time to celebrate. If the Padres take the last two games of this series, they own the second wildcard berth on Monday morning. When a squad waits until the last minute to be reliable, time can’t be wasted. Tyler O’Neill certainly gets it.

Until next time, be safe and nicer to each other.


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