By Lindsay Toler
By Chad Garrison
By Brett Koshkin
By RFT Staff
By Lindsay Toler
By Riverfront Times
By Danny Wicentowski
By Pete Kotz
Extreme ironing, another European "sport" that has gained the Gray Lady's imprimatur, was birthed across the pond when Brit Phil Shaw and his buddy, Paul Cartwright, "did a spot of ironing whilst rock climbing," sayeth the Times on May 21 in a piece called "Get Out Your Boards: Extreme Ironing May Soon Be Hot." Shaw carries a bag of different irons for different extreme-ironing climates and situations, such as stiffening up a shirt collar on a frozen lake or while "hanging off the side of a World War II amphibious vehicle known as a duck boat" in Boston, the St. Louis of New England. He and Cartwright now harbor Olympian aspirations for their steam-drenched activity, placing it on par with "synchronized swimming and curling."
The extreme-sport realm can't possibly get any more surreal, Unreal caught ourselves saying.
Oh, sure it can. We hereby propose a new pastime, which we'd like to see to heat up St. Louis like spicy food in a spastic colon. Behold, if you will, Stagour:
Step one: Sneak up on an unsuspecting beer drinker at any local watering hole, armed with a bottle of Stag beer
Step two: Bonk top of said reveler's upright bottle with the bottom of yours
Step three: Watch gleefully as at least half the contents of your pal's twelve-ouncer spews forth from the top of his bottle like Mount St. Helens
Step four: Hilarity (or, alternatively, fisticuffs) ensues.
Stagour practitioners are to be referred to as "hoosieurs." Underage players are encouraged to take Stagour into four-star restaurants, where the enterprising adolescent hoosieur might bonk fifths of Dom Perignon with a double-fisted Stag attack culled from Daddy's garage fridge.
Go forth and bonk, hoosieurs -- and please fill Unreal in on your exploits by e-mailing accounts of Stagourian mayhem to email@example.com.
Disclaimer: Unreal is in no way obligated to bail your hoosieur ass out of jail.
And so it came to pass that a decree was sent out by the Reverend Flip Benham, proclaiming: "Abortion is murder! Homosexuality is a sin!! Islam is a lie!!!"
The good reverend was delivering a scathing sermon outside the Old Courthouse last week when Unreal caught up with the leader of Operation Save America.
Benham and his followers were halfway through a 2,600-mile walk across the United States, and as luck -- or fate -- would have it, they landed in St. Louis on the very weekend the nation celebrates Pride Fest.
"They want Sodom and Gomorrah, but we're going to deliver them a bit of Heaven," said the reverend, filling Unreal in on his game plan. "They're out-of-the-closet homosexuals, and we're out-of-the-closet Christians. The fact is that some of our own members have been saved from homosexuality, and we hope to do the same here."
Operation Save America had a busy itinerary for St. Louis, including protests outside several area abortion clinics, but on this afternoon Benham was most concerned about Judgment.
As the donkey Mercy and the quarter-horse Justice idly chewed the lawn of Kiener Plaza, Benham lamented the lapse of Judgment, a seventeen-year-old horse that went lame after stepping on a rock outside Kansas City, the previous stop on the group's march from California to Washington, D.C.
"He's a beautiful horse, and we hope to have him back before we leave St. Louis," Benham said.
The barnyard critters are part of a procession that includes an infant's casket outfitted with bloody rags and a broken Styrofoam replica of the Ten Commandments. For special occasions the group also reveals another prop, an aborted fetus stored in formaldehyde. On this day, however, the little tyke had been left behind in the horse trailer.
As the interview drew to a close, the reverend politely thanked Unreal for our interest and with a quizzical look asked for a second time what paper we work for.
"Funny thing is, it seems that only homosexual newspapers ever cover our story," he said.
"Bill Me!" will return if -- and only if -- you send a question to St. Louis school-board member Bill Haas! Address matters of love and lust to firstname.lastname@example.org, or stamp and send c/oRiverfront Times, 6358 Delmar Boulevard, Suite 200, St. Louis, MO 63130. You can also call 314-754-6411 and leave a voicemail -- but only if you promise to speak in a husky bedroom voice. NOW!