Hit Parade

THAT'S OUR GUY: It's been another successful winter for Guy Phillips. Over the past few seasons, he's been filling the Kiel Center on a good number of chilly nights, enticing people into the downtown sports arena with his wit, wisdom and over-the-top commentary. This season, Phillips filled the Kiel to the tune of 15,142 per night. So many fans for a public-address announcer? Amazing, really.

Although his act is set against the backdrop of St. Louis University Billiken basketball, Phillips divined early on in his PA career that folks weren't there to see hoops -- they were there to hear his take on the game. So far, he's rarely disappointed. Count his signature calls: "Hughes, Larry Hughes!," "Larry Ssssssssimmons!" or "JT!" All belted out for maximum attention. Seldom did a contestant fail at one of the halftime games without catching mocking abuse from Phillips, who seldom utters such harsh jibes when heard on his Milquetoast pop radio station, Y-98.

At Bills games, though, he is unchained. He is letting you know that he is there and you are there and you will listen to him whether you wish to or not. It's his job, it's his take, it's his mission.

Today, the Billikens; tomorrow, roller derby!

TOTALLY UNRELATED FACTS: The total acreage of the St. Louis Arena, with parking lots included, was/is 26 acres. The total acreage of the St. Louis Rams' Earth City headquarters/practice site, Rams Park, is 27.5 acres. The Arena was shut down in 1994. The Rams moved to St. Louis in 1995.

We are in no way suggesting that the Rams would've given the city of St. Louis a tremendous shot in the arm by moving their operations into the central corridor rather than squirreling away in the tony suburbs, where the team's fleet of Land Cruisers and Lexuses have a much shorter trip from condo to training table. Nor are we suggesting that the city would have been served in both public relations and commerce by cutting just one more deal -- say, offering the Arena site for some small change and a handshake.

These are, simply, totally unrelated facts.

HERE'S LOOKING AT YOU: This past Saturday, artist Jerry Monteith hosted an opening for his installation "Day Lights Night Eyes," a public piece that, when viewed from the inside, proves deceptively simple. The work is situated in the rough-but-handsome 9th Floor Gallery of downtown's A.D. Brown Building; Monteith has covered the windows with black paper, save for two sections, shaped like eyes, that are floodlit from inside the room. From Washington Avenue, the piece could confuse the unsuspecting county hordes, out for a night out on the town, with a couple drinks down the hatch; when lit from the hours of 9 p.m.-midnight, the effect is creepy and otherworldly, the eyes peering directly down into the Washington club district -- or what remains of it this week.

For those who catch it without warning, it should provide a odd little moment of surprise. Those who have occasion to view it more than once may consider it a shame that the project has to come down in a month. With buildings coming down nearby, the A.D. Brown's got some real size and stature on Tucker. And this quirky little touch only adds to its surroundings. Neat.

RFT ANAGRAMS: In our version, extra punctuation is allowable.

Goalie Grant Fuhr = A Lie: Hurt for Gang
Busch Stadium = It Dumb, as Such
Mayor Clarence Harmon = No Car Larceny, More Ham

Send quips, tips and anagrams to Thomas_Crone@rftstl.com.

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