Posts Tagged ‘Missouri’

So, Toto…

August 8, 2011

…we aren’t in Kansas anymore. Nope, we are in the middle of Missouri. Hilly, wonderful, tornadic (I made this word up) Missouri.

Let’s start from the beginning…

I “surprised” my Dad with a housewarming party in St. Louis this past weekend. We hit the road early Sunday afternoon, and were supposed to be rolling in around 5 (central standard time, of course).

We were a little more than half -way home, and were just driving by Sedalia. We could tell we were driving in to a storm…

All of a sudden, out of nowhere, a HUGE gust of wind almost knocked everyone off the road. We were driving and suddenly noticed the trees to our left and right were almost bending over. Bryan was just about to point out a tree that was going sideways when the wind just railed us! It was especially scary because we were right by a semi, also fighting for control.

So we did the smart-person move and pulled over at what we thought was a gas station. It was actually a fireworks place that also just happened to sell gasoline, too… ummmm, yeah.

Image Source: You’re Doing It Wrong!

Once we pulled over, we noticed the place was a giant warehouse… you could hear the rain as loudly as if you were outside! We ran inside (there was literally nowhere else to go…other than a ditch), Lily in tow, and saw  that everyone else and their brother pulled over there, too.

A man yelled, “join the party!” as he held open the door for us to get inside. That was quite nice of him. What happened next? Yeah, that was not so nice.

Courtesy: Examiner

About five minutes into being there and listening to the pounding rain, the attendant announces that if the electricity goes out, everyone has to leave. Store policy. Cue blackout.

Luckily, the lights popped back on…then shut back off…then turned back on. I had decided after that first blackout that she was going to be dragging me out. I was just going to trance on out of there in a severe thunderstorm (hail included!), with my 8-month old–all because the lights went out and that was “store policy”?! Ah, hell nah. 

Image Source: Cheezburger

Since I was trying to keep from freaking out after the three mini power-outages, I started walking around letting Lily flirt with people as I chatted them up.

Anyway, if you can’t tell… Lily has no problem flirting.

I walked up to one little crowd as a Dad was telling his prepubescent girls (one of them informed me she wanted to get pink streaks in her hair) that a semi had gotten picked up by a strong gust of wind and flipped over I-70 W. After searching around online, I can’t seem to validate that claim, but I can tell you that these storms caused power outages for for 50,000 in the Kansas City area! 

Another girl I chatted with said she’d tag-team the fireworks attendant with me if she tried to kick us out. 🙂

Anyway, after about fifteen minutes and two diaper changes, there was a break in the storm and people started leaving. We got back on the highway and were heading toward bright skies and sunny futures when all of a sudden all of the traffic stopped moving. It stopped moving for so long that people were physically getting out of their cars to look:

The above pictures I actually took while we were stopped on I-70. Even though I overheard that guy saying parts of the highway were closed, it didn’t click that was the way WE were going, until we were stopped. There were multiple police cars parked on different parts of the road, but by the time we were moving again, I couldn’t see what had happened. I guess it will remain a mystery.

Anyway, it was smooth sailing the rest of the trip home…until we walked into the apartment…

You’ll never guess what we came home to… A POWER OUTAGE! Yay? So since we were stripped of our electronics and internetz, we grabbed a flashlight and decided to go rogue and use one of those ancient free things called a phone book to call our power company.

Image Source: Eco Convert

Well…apparently since there are 50,000+ people with power out, KCP&L has opted for automated answering services…on all of their lines. So, day 2 without power–w00!

Apparently, storms like to follow me around wherever I go. Here’s another mini-story before I end this post:

This kind of reminds me that one time last month when the water patrol had to “rescue” a Mom, tornado sirens went off, the sunscreen ran out, oh… and when people left looking like this:

Mmmm…juicy.

Anyway, that night we ended by us abandoning our tent because the tornado sirens went off and there was a lightning show on our campground. I don’t think I’ll ever figure out what happened to that tent.

Well…see you next time!

~Christine

I feel ya, Mary.

Image: Of Course We Talk

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Life…or something like it.

September 15, 2010

Hello all!

I am absolutely horrid about updating my blog unless it’s required for class. Since my Capstone ended this summer, I haven’t posted… yikes!

Where to start?

This j-kid, one-class away from being a Mizzou grad is having a kid of her own! Yup. Her name will be Lily Persephone. Here’s a pic…

Her fists are bunched up like a little boxer.  I, for one, think she will be most excellent at video games because she has learned this one-two-kick-punch combo. It’s punch-punch-kick! Almost simultaneously. My stomach looks like a little alien is trying to break out when it happens.

Look out Mortal Kombat world, Lily is gonna kick some behind. Xiayou style.

Courtesy IGN.com

I am still working at KOMU, but as a web editor. I’m in charge of KOMU’s Twitter page, webpage and online alerts. I also answer the phone… which should be a job of its own somedays. I should also start writing down what some callers have to say…

Mid-Missourians can be crazy. That’s all I will say for now — and as a mid-Missourian myself, I think I can say that.

Well, until next update!

–Christine

Adventures in the Snow…

December 9, 2009

I was singing “let it snow, let it snow, let is snooow!”

Until I was in it. Yes, submerged in the snow in Moberly, Missouri for a live shot. Just how cold was it, you might ask? Well… cold enough to freeze the live truck. So cold, in fact, the live truck is still sitting in Moberly because we could not get the mast down. Here’s how it went down:

1. Missed call around 12:30 a.m.

2. Answered call at 2:38 a.m.

3. Was informed I was going to do a live shot in Moberly.

4. Got up, got dressed, got ready…

5. Drove to Moberly.

6. Proceeded to freeze.

7. Set up live shot equipment with the truck operator, Josh.

8. Couldn’t feel my fingers.

9. Did a live shot around 5 a.m.

10. Lips went numb so I couldn’t say my last name correctly on the air.

11. Lost feeling in my toes.

12. Got reprimanded by salt truck men because we parked in an inconvenient spot for them.

13. Cleaned up all live truck equipment.

14. Re-set up live truck equipment. We realized the live truck mast wouldn’t go back down so we couldn’t move like the MoDOT men asked.

15. Lost the feeling in my face.

16. Tried unsuccessfully two more times to do a live shot, but the frigid temperatures prevented us from having a good audio connection with the station.

17. Died.

18. Was revived.

19. Received class credit.

Sweet.

To watch the chaos, click here. I am the second half – the one about to be blown away.

Have a frosty day – drive carefully!

Ai Shiteru…

April 30, 2009
My picture for one of my KOMU stories

My picture for one of my KOMU stories

Did you like my little confession to the profession of journalism up there?  My worries from last week are gone!  This is exciting because I feel like I am back on track to becoming the journalist I would like myself to be.  Last week I was slightly distraught because I had trouble with my first assignment at KOMU.  Since then I have done three more and am able to use the software with much more ease.  Another exciting thing?  News at the state Capitol last night!

I usually work in Jefferson City Mondays and Tuesdays, but I swapped this week so I could do a package for KOMU.  I went in to the Capitol on Wednesday this week and guess what happened?  I finished with my radio stories for the day (they were on a bill about motorcycles high and low beams, read them here) when the Governor announced he was holding a 6 p.m. meeting about the swine flu.  My editor, Phill Brooks, immediately climbed into his excited shoes and began ranting about how the first case of swine flu must be in Missouri.  Some of my co-workers were  a bit skeptical, but it turns out Phill was right!  Instead of going home, I began to Twitter, Facebook and blog about the night’s events for the next two hours!  Two of our reporter’s went to the Gov’s meeting and were updating us as the words were spilling from Nixon’s mouth.  What an exciting use of technology to get the word out to people right as it was happening!

At KOMU this and part of last week, I’ve done two more stories.  One was on a presentation about the forgotten Ioway tribe which once reigned Missouri and the other was on a growing and disturbing new 21st century addiction:  internet addiction.  Read and watch my story about the Ioway here and read/watch my story about internet addiction, here.

I am still sick, but it is now confined to just my nasty cough. I finished my strep medicine yesterday morning, but I think it may be something else since I am not 100% yet. I missed my Broadcast 2 class this morning (sorry Greeley!) to rest and hopefully feel good enough to go to class by 1 today. Speaking of, I better get on the move since it is about 12:12 now.

Until next week,
Christine Slusser

World-Wide Web of Journalism

April 2, 2009

What an amazing week I’ve had! 

For starters, my stories down at the State Capitol were brilliant.  Not to sound arrogant, but I am excited I was able to cover “breaking news” on Tuesday.  Various reports from the AP and Kansas City Star (who broke the story) said there were FBI investigations going on in Jeff’s Capitol. 

My first reaction was, “what!?”  The only source the legislators had was the article.  Then later Tuesday AP broke a report that Rep. LeVota’s name was being brought into FBI investigator’s questions.

Representative LeVota of Independence, MO

Photo courtesy levota.com

Shortly after the report, the Democrats held an emergency caucus.  I was there to cover it, waiting outside the doors until it adjourned.

To read my radio story, click here.

To read the KC Star’s story, click here.

As far as what will be my last package (I am determined to make it so good it will be), I will be doing a second-round of interviews this coming Sunday.  My story is on a group of college guys who started their own fraternity on Mizzou’s campus.   It’s not every day that you see this and I thought it would be a great story.  I went over my first script with Greeley before Spring Break and hope that my new corrections will make it an even more exciting story than before.

As far as the news goes, I have been appalled by the number of reported plane crashes lately.  The one that caught my eye today, however, was a story by USA Today.  They said the Montana plane crash that killed 14 people could have been prevented.  The pilot apparently called back to traffic controllers twice to divert from the planned route.

Now my question is, why wasn’t he allowed to?  To read the story, click here.

Until next week,

Christine Slusser

I can't wait to play in the sprinklers, too!  It's spring time!

Intrigued?  Check out my other blog, here.

The Waves of Change

March 5, 2009

My birthday is in three days.  Since my birthday is in March, this makes me a Pisces.  Here is my horoscope for the day:

“Thursday, March 5 (Moon in Gemini to Cancder 6:08 a.m.)

You certainly do enjoy the Cancer moon.  It shifts your emotional focus to romance creativity, and what you do for fun an dpleasure.  Play for all you’re worth.  Tomorrow, Venus turns retrograde in Aries, so your love life could get a bit bumpy.”

Now, while I am not quite sure the significance of Venus turning retrograde…I think it is safe to say it is a bad thing since my love life could get botched. 

I think astrology is extremely important, sort of a look into the unknown universe.  It has been around for centuries, there is Chinese astrology (I’m a dragon) which goes by years instead of months, the astrology we use here in America (according to birth months) and other various forms all around the world.

People just want to know what they cannot.  We make constellations, tell stories of how the stars got there and give each person born under a certain month pre-planned characteristics.  Pisces are supposed to be good in the water, very emotional and sociable.  Some recommended professions for Pisces are actually, believe it or not, journalists and actors.

 Courtesy astrology.net

But really…why are people so obsessed?  Links to your astrological prediction for the day are available as Widgets, in most newspapers and even on online sites such as CNN.com. Click here to go to an article they did about what your zodiac says about your profession.

Fascinating.

This week I worked on a story about one man battling the sour economy. He is a memorial maker, by which I mean, he makes headstones and other carvings into stone. As soon as I figure out how to post it on here, I will be sure to do so. Stay tuned!

This package was probably my hardest. I contacted 10-15 economy “experts” and they all said they were too busy to interview with me. My next resort? Going door-to-door in my apartment complex and asking people how the economy has affected them. It worked out wonderfully. I think this is my best package yet so I will be sure to post it up here when I find a spare minute.

I worked the 4 a.m. shift at KOMU this morning and it was surprisingly swell. I really liked working with the “old” summer crew – it was like a mini family reunion. I don’t know if you’ve heard, but the TV station is trying to save money (aren’t we all?) so they did away with their complimentary coffee. One of the crew members brought in a coffee maker and I have never been so excited to drink a good ol’ cup of Joe in my life.

At the Capitol this week I wrote about a Senator who is pushing the right to pray in school and other government-owned properties. To read it, click here.

Until next week,
Christine Slusser
Intrigued? Check out my other blog and radio stories, here.
Pickford's grave...I wonder if the guy I interviewed could make something like this?

Stand by!

February 19, 2009

This week was certainly interesting!  At the Capitol I produced some rockin’ stories.  I covered a House hearing that mentioned a 1995 murder trial.  Shortly after, there was first round approval to give teachers more knowledge about problem students.  Read my story here.

My next story I wrote for radio down in Jefferson City involved hackers.  I learned a lot from this Senate meeting.  Before I delve into that, we met in the Senate lounge.  One thing I admire about the Capitol building is that it simply highlights Missouri’s history – both the good and the bad.  I was slightly disturbed by the rug on the wall with a man skinning a deer that was hanging upside down, a branch wedged between it’s feet to hold it in place.  Being a vegetarian, this especially struck me.  While I couldn’t find the picture online, here is a picture of our Capitol (from Wikipedia).

...I work here Mondays and Tuesdays for Missouri Digital NEws

...I work here Mondays and Tuesdays for Missouri Digital News

Back to the news… to read my story about how Missouri is 1 of 6 states that does not require businesses to notify you if your personal information has been stolen, click here.  Other interesting items in the news?  A univeral cell phone charger (also read why some say it won’t work), a magician who now can’t afford the rabbit or the hat and a swiss secret?

Last week I turned in my first package (I talked about it in my previous post), and it was brutal.  My teacher (also pictured in the last post), tore me apart.  I guess that just leaves a lot of room for improvement.  I am also confident this next package I have will have a higher grade.  I focused on doctors working around the year to find the cure for breast cancer.  Read the article that inspired me, here.

Unbeknownst to some, I am also a minor in Meteorology.  I figure with the economy the way it is, I should be indispensible.  If I can do the news and the weather, I will be less likely to be fired than that guy who can only read prompter.  That’s what I’m hoping anyway.  A- on my first test, at least I am well on my way.

Until next week,

Christine