Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Miserable Top Ten

It was pointed out to me by a new member of the Mizzou family, J aka Dr. Fabulous (not my choice), that I may not be that miserable here in Misery. While I am not entirely happy with this little hole of a college town, I do have to admit that there are some redeeming factors of COMO and Misery. (Sorry, I think it's punny.)

So, to commemorate Dr. Fab's coming (along with his family, J & V), I will focus this post on the positives of the state I'm in. I present to you: The Miserable Top Ten!

10. It's a great place to raise children. I've heard this so many times and have witnessed so many babies being made (the result, not the process) that it must be true. The schools are good. There's little crime and plenty of parks. There are various family-oriented events throughout the year downtown. All that parents have to do is protect their kids from racial intolerance and "big fish in the small pond" syndrome. People love kids so much here, they often have children during their own childhoods.

9. COMO is exactly half-way between St. Louis and Kansas City. Of course, th
at means we have to drive two hours in order to reach a major city, but I'm trying not to be negative. I've seen some good shows at St. Louis' Pageant and hear that KC has plenty of decent venues. We have spent many weekend afternoons visiting Trader Joe's in the east and R heads west to get her hair cut. I grew up in a small town. I now live in a small town, but I will always love the big city. We have two in Misery.

8.Sedalia(!) is in Misery. It is the home of the state fair (Fried food on a stick, anyone?), great contemporary art, several good Mexican restaurants, the Guber Burger, and...well...that's enough, really.

7. Misery is a great pun to overuse. I actually came up with "Misery" when I was in fifth grade. We had to learn the state capitals, and I made up the mnemonic device "Misery in Jefferson City", although Jeff City is actually in Misery, but whatever. I got a 98% on the test thanks to the Misery pun.

6. Box Elder, MO. I have yet to find Box Elder, but it is a great Pavement song. "I'm takin' the next bus outta here./I'm gonna head for Box Elder,MO."

5. There are scandals-a-plenty in this town. The Paige Arena fiasco, Kenneth Lay Chair of Finance, Quinn Snyder's painful descent, students learning about the gay, the stupid debate over stem-cell research, and many more to come I'm sure. COMO is a small town with big-city controversy. It doesn't hurt that there are like 15,000 graduates of the J School with nothing better to do than dig up a story.

4. The Blue Note and Mojo's provide a decent amount of indie rock shows to satisfy my fix. I'm going to see the Yeah Yeah Yeah's next month in a club, so that's not too bad. As far as college towns go, it's not as bad as State College, but it's no Lawrence.

3. Breakfast. One can get a good breakfast in this town. Cucina Sorella is the second-best breakfast place at which I've ever eaten
. Uprise Bakery serves phenomenal croissants filled with things like goat cheese and spinach, plus a good cup of coffee. Then there several local diners, if that's your thing. And, I wouldn't want to forget mentioning two Waffle Houses and a International House of Pancakes (IHOP). The coffee scene is adequate, and there's even a tea shop for the faint-of-heart.

2. The Ragtag Theater lives in COMO. I like me some art-house theaters. One can see great indie films while sucking on a spicy dog and slurping a Bell's Two-Hearted Ale. The best part is that they are moving to Hitt Street and expanding to two screens! Of course I've failed to mention the many events the Ragtag puts on at the Missouri Theater and Flat Branch Park, True/False (see below), and several free screenings of rare or forgotten films. Oh, I almost forgot the dude who sings old-timey before the flicks. AMC can't offer that!

1. True/False. Rarely does one live in a town that has its own film festival. Even rarer does one get to attend such a festival that is as community-based, non-corporate, and small-town as T/F. I saw 11 films at this year's event and plan to better that next year. The festival is loaded with hipster sentiment, small-town charm, filmmakers, indie bands, and free beer. Highlights for me have included The Devil and Daniel Johnston, Kurt Cobain: About a Son, and Life off the Grid: Living on the Mesa.

Now this isn't all I like about Misery, but it's some of the highlights. There is still some good beer in this state and a few kitschy tourist destinations (Branson, featuring Yakov Smirnoff?). I'm making due in Misery, COMO in particular.

In other news...

We move on the 30th. Come help us. There will be beer and pizza. I'm thinking of adding a survey to determine the beer choice(s).

I've begun another blog called I Can't Sing It Strong Enough. After reading Angry John Sellers mention the song-for-song interpretation of Guided By Voices' songs at My Impression Now, I knew I had to get in the act. After careful research (a couple of pages of a Google search) I found that there are no blogs dedicated to Pavement songs. I decided that I needed to fill that niche.

I'm heading to St. Louis on the 1st to see Interpol, and I'll stay in COMO to check out the YYY's (as mentioned above). I'm also currently considering the Blonde Redhead and Wilco shows in the September.


ATR said...

All awesome things! I surely hope that, given the time, I'll have ten things to list that I dig about my new digs!

Columbia, itself, as you may well know, is the subject of Uncle Tupelo's "Whiskey Bottle": "Liquor and guns, / the sign says quite plain. / Somehow life goes on / in a world so insane."

How can you beat that? I guess by getting drunk and shooting rifles!

comoprozac said...

Uncle Tupelo? Wow. I've misunderestimated COMO.