Friday, January 25, 2013

Where shall I meet you?, St. Louis

During baseball season anyway the best answer to that question has always been and forever shall be "at the Musial statue." Sadly Stan The Man passed away last Saturday night. A public visitation was held Thursday at the New Cathedral on Lindell Ave. His private funeral will be televised this Saturday followed by a processional to the statue where family members will place a wreath. A brief paragraph cannot contain all there is to be said about Stan Musial. He had a monumental total of 3630 career hits. Remarkably exactly 1815 were at home and exactly 1815 on the road, only one of many statistics that reflect his consistency as a player. Sportscaster Bob Costas once noted with gentle irony that the only thing Musial ever did was sustain a 20-year career of baseball excellence and human decency.

The inscription on the base of the statue reads "Here stands baseball's perfect warrior. Here stands baseball's perfect knight." Musial has said that at first he did not care for the sculpture because it didn't look like him. So many people pose in front of it for pictures, even entire wedding parties often gather there for photos, that he came to appreciate it's special significance. Although this watercolor was done in 2011 it seems right to repost it at this time. Videographer Joel Anderson produced a piece appropriately called Urban Sketching of the painting the image. By the time we arrived at the statue that morning people were already beginning to show up for a Cardinals game later in the day. Even members of the city fire department drove up to the spot for a photo shoot of a new fire truck. It has already been written that St. Louis is not the same place without Musial. That may be true but St. Louis is certainly a much better place because of him.

8 comments:

  1. Michael, what a wonderful story. I love your sketch, too.

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    1. Thanks Kate. And thank you too for establishing USK Midwest!

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    2. You're welcome! I've been a resident here all my life, written several travel and natural history books, and find it extremely varied and beautiful. This is NOT "flyover country"!!

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  2. Nice tribute-I love the watercolor!

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  3. Fabulous tribute. Fabulous drawing. You serve as a great ambassador for Urban Sketchers through the UTube video.

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