Thursday is the day when the St. Louis Post-Dispatch
exposes our town for the folksy Dogpatch it truly is, courtesy of the "Help Yourself" portion of the Everyday section. In "Help Yourself," there's the Questions and the Answers. The Questions are the earnest queries from area residents searching for everything from lactose-free yogurt to ancient typewriter manuals to bamboo toilet-paper dispensers to "Big Mama"-brand panty hose. Folks hoping that someone can answer their prayers for missing parts, products for better living, collectibles and, let's face it, crap. People looking for videos of TV shows they missed, desperately hoping that someone else saw fit to commit, say, Tom Jones' appearance on The Tonight Show
to videotape (someone has). The other half of Help Yourself, of course, is the Answers, where fellow readers respond with addresses and phone numbers that lead to that lusted-after Brock-a-Brella, toy-train coupling or pre-Civil War ironing board. This is the stuff with which we fill our basements. This is who we are.