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Roadside Memorials
Aired November 21, 2011
True story: Driving along Route 30 one afternoon I happened to glimpse one of those roadside markers poking out of the brush. It caught my attention and, trying to make out the letters, I distinctly remember thinking: Those things are going to cause an accident. And I gazed upon that marker a second too long because when I turned back to my driving, traffic had stopped and I couldn't brake in time to avoid hitting the truck ahead of me.

What causes people to place these things on streets and highways? Aren’t laudatory funeral services and graveside visits enough? Apparently not.

License Plate for Vietnam Era Veterans
Aired August 11, 2009
I recently received a medal from the State of Missouri thanking me for my bravery and dedication in serving our country during the Vietnam War. During my service from 69 to 72, I didn't go to Vietnam, but I could have.

Now, I want a license plate to reflect this service - not a "Vietnam Veteran" plate which would be seen as misleading. A plate that says “Vietnam-Era Veteran” would do.

Sign Preservation
Aired March 02, 2009
Somewhere an old sign is being removed. It could land in a junkyard, an antique store, or even a museum. The fate of vintage signs is fickle at best. Is it art or eyesore? Cultural artifact or tacky advertising? Is it worth saving at all?

Lonnie Tettaton, has painted hundreds of wall signs in the Metro area. In each case, Lonnie’s work became a civic event — people gathered, watching the work in progress.

Steinberg Rink - A Winter Treasure
Aired December 10, 2008
Not everyone yearns for a winter getaway in the balmy climes of Cancun or Aruba. Some of us long for the frigid temps that bring out the cross-country skis, sleds, toboggans, and ice skates. Ice skating, now there is a winter activity — exercise and great fun all at once. And right here, in our own Forest Park, is one of the best reasons to get out of the house in winter. Founded in 1957, Steinberg Rink offers public skating daily, from November to March. And after a recent $1.4 million-dollar renovation, the rink is in top form with a new surface and sound system.

Meat Shoot
Aired November 03, 2008
Autumn, with its gridiron action, is also meat shoot season. The term may conjure a bunch of yahoos shooting at a frightened turkey, but the meat shoot is actually an old-time shooting match, a social gathering in a country setting where the shotgun reigns king.

Never mind that I’m up against modern, tricked-out 12-gauges with barrels a foot longer than grandpa’s blunderbuss, it is the act of walking up to the line, taking aim, firing, and seeing that target jerk back that sends a thrill through my being.

Safer But Paranoid
Aired June 11, 2008
The driving public may grouse but what good does it do? Camera-generated tickets are here to stay, maybe.

The program is being challenged. Meanwhile, the cameras are at work, catching unwitting motorists at every turn.

Aired September 12, 2007
A serious artist once remarked that someone had referred to his abstract painting as "cute". He was devastated. "Ugly, prosaic, even dreck", he bemoaned, "anything but cute".

Yard Sale
Aired May 09, 2007
Recession and unemployment aren’t the only symptoms of a flagging economy. Yard sales in record numbers are an equally valid indicator. In the bigger picture, though, they contribute to the proliferation of stuff, a practice that is not necessarily wise.

Insane Standard Time
Aired March 29, 2007
People say change is good. Not me. I’m still on the old time. I haven’t “sprung forward” with everyone else. My clocks are still set to the time we had prior to March 11, when the time elves worked their mischief.

No Plate for This Veteran
It didn’t take much bravery to down steins of pilsener in German gasthauses, which is what I did during my military service from '69 to '72. Still, I could have gone to Vietnam. I want a license plate to reflect this service.

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Wm. Stage

Wm. Stage


A journalist and photographer since 1982, Wm. Stage has plumbed the life stories of thousands of people. He has taught photojournalism at Saint Louis University's School for Professional Studies [1990-96] and he is an alumnus of the Photojournalism Workshop, offered by University of Missouri - Columbia's School of Journalism and held in a different Missouri town every year since 1946. He is the author of six non-fiction books including Have A Weird Day: Reflections and Ruminations on the St. Louis Experience. He lives with his dog, Jack, in The Hill neighborhood of St. Louis.

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