Purple annoyance Barney upstages Mayor Clarence Harmon -- and sounds strikingly similar to KMOX-AM's Randy Karraker; please, we don't need to see McGwire or Sosa strike out; KZJZ- AM snags an award from the National Association of Broadcasters

The Parents Assembly of the St. Louis Public Schools expected to hear from Mayor Clarence Harmon on Thursday in the City Hall rotunda, but then someone realized Barney was in town. With Barney's Musical Castle at Kiel Center, the City Hall parking lot is taken up, at $5 a slot. Because Doriss Walker of the Parents Assembly doesn't need any more disincentives for parents to attend, the meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 24, at Metro High School, 4015 McPherson, behind the Salad Bowl . Superintendent Cleveland Hammonds will speak, maybe about those test scores. Harmon plans to play host to the Parents Assembly in the City Hall rotunda on Thursday, Oct. 28.... Speaking of Barney, has anyone else noticed how much Randy Karraker of KMOX (1120 AM) sounds like the cuddly purple dinosaur so many of the babies love? No, it's not his use of Body Shaper to lose weight; it's Randy's singsongy voice. But no way can the sports jockey say the Cardinals, or Rams, or Blues are super-dee-doo-per.... Advisory to all local sports anchors: As the days dwindle to a precious few and the Oct. 1 Cubs-Cardinals series at Busch ends the baseball season, viewers of the nightly news do not need to see how Mark "I-70" McGwire or Sammy Sosa made outs. The most annoying bit of this homer binge is when highlights reveal how they didn't hit home runs. Listen, Cub and Cardinal fans know what outs look like.... One thing that St. Louis does have that most places don't is a decent AM jazz station, at least according to the National Association of Broadcasters, which gave KZJZ (1380 AM) a Marconi Radio Award as the 1999 Jazz Station of the Year.