Realtors, businessmen talk Columbia’s growth

William Fruth’s explanation of how strong economies work started simply enough — with a bucket and baseball. However, when trees and grass were added to the picture, his suggestions for developing a strong economy became a complex issue.

Breakdown of the PedNet budget

PedNet project list

The nonmotorized pilot program unfolding in Columbia includes spending for these construction projects.

I’ve always been a doodler

Tim Sparling has been drawing since he was in the first grade. He doodled on graph paper, dividing the squares into shapes such as triangles and then shading them in with pencil. The result was a coherent assembly of patterns and designs.

Building a cultural community

On a quiet stretch of land in Hallsville, Kirk Ouk watches from a distance as about a hundred people – men and women dressed in their regal best – sit in a field on colorful reed mats, all clasping a flower in their hands, which are held together as if in prayer. The silence is a stark contrast to the laughter that was heard just moments before. Now, the ear discerns only the chanting of the monk standing at the head of the group.

Belief in brief: Zen

Zen is arguably one of the more cherished words within the lexicon of popular culture, applied as it is to things as diverse as home décor and motorcycle maintenance. Despite the new-age vibe that Zen appears to give, it is in fact a religion that is more than 13 centuries old now.

Mercury rising

Junior Prince sat on a white 5-gallon bucket hoping for a bite on one of his three lines in Little Dixie Lake. The catfish weren’t interested.

A week without meat

Day One: 9:15 a.m. I have not put a morsel of food into my belly today. I have decided to see if I can live without meat (chicken, pork, lamb and beef) for one week. If this works, it could possibly lead to a complete life change. I recently saw the movie “Fast Food Nation,” and it made me sick. I will use that as motivation to get through what is sure to be a week of hell.

A week without a cell

We all appreciate the beauty of the cell phone. Most of us consider it as much a necessity as a set of wheels. Cells figure prominently in movies like “The Departed,” where text messaging is a matter of life and death. And in “Cellular,” a kidnapped woman’s smashed phone still sends out a rescue call.

A week without smoking

Day One Woke up this morning wanting a cigarette. I have the best intentions for this week of not smoking, but I already regret agreeing to it. I quit once before. Of course, I had a prescription for quit smoking pills, and it still wasn’t easy. I quit smoking in July 2006 for several months. I smoke Doral Menthol Lights but will smoke anything if it is around. OK, so I’ve made it through the first day, but I must have walked three miles. Three times I spent a half hour or better pacing around, trying to figure out how to get out of this stupid, stupid agreement.

A week without coffee

Whether it be from Waffle House or locally roasted cups from Lakota, Artisan or Coffee Zone, coffee is an intricate part of my life. I usually drink two to six cups a day. And when I do late-night radio at KOPN, I can drink an absurd amount. The following journal reveals my pain during a week without the caffeinated piece of my daily puzzle.

Amy Chow

Spill it: Amy Chow, owner of House of Chow

Picture of the week

Baseball is a very Zen sport in terms of photography.

Web video of Erikson’s confession illustrates community journalism

Bill Ferguson isn’t giving up, it seems. He’s convinced his son Ryan didn’t murder Tribune sports editor Kent Heitholt in 2001, despite the verdict to the contrary by 12 presumably honest men and women.

Springtime cleanup spares sports gear

There is one yearly ritual that I endure to ensure that spring is really here — and that is the annual garage clean up. My husband and I tackle the daylong task together.

Missouri's missing out

You can tag your allegiance to any of the nearly two-dozen horses that will be thundering toward the finish line in today’s Kentucky Derby. It doesn’t matter which one you pick.

Baseball psychology book enjoyable, easy to read

When MU associate psychology professor Mike Stadler was growing up, he dreamed of playing major league baseball.

Columbia's PedNet wants to be the model for a new way to get around town

Beginning this summer, and for at least the next three years, Columbians will see changes designed to make bicycling and walking a more attractive alternative to driving.