Patty Unleashed

Patty Unleashed: 1.9.19

Happy New Year! If you are a regular reader of this column, you know I always announce my resolutions for the year ahead. I am a big believer in making them because I do think it works (assuming I can still remember them by June).

Well, this year I only have one, and that is to be fearless. Yes, you read that correctly. The person who writes about dragging a tire around a parking lot for fitness, undergoing hypnosis and cryotherapy, and hugging Joe Biden under the scrutiny of his security detail is actually a big old chicken. I was born afraid of my own shadow (I feel like I should blame my brothers for this). I will not go in the ocean because you never know what is lurking below the surface. For me, a walk in the woods is a Dateline episode just waiting to happen. “Three people started on an afternoon hike, but only two came back. Was it an accident, or was it … murder?” You get my drift. I fear stupid stuff. I can talk to total strangers or tell stories in front of 100 people with no problem, but there are just some things this woman won’t do. So I was more than a little intrigued when I saw that my friend Kristin Johnson is competing in Dancing with the St. Louis Stars this month. That definitely would be on Patty’s ‘No Way’ List.

Kristin and I both worked at Edward Jones. She is a principal, which means she oversees lots of stuff and thus would not knowingly want to embarrass herself in public. So, over a Diet Coke, I asked (while taking notes like a real reporter): “Are you being forced to do this?” She assured me she was not. Kristin has been dancing since she was 3, and she considered focusing on it in college until her dad pointed out how good she was at math, and maybe accounting was a more secure route to success. (Don’t you love dads—always practical, and usually right.) Kristin still loved dancing, though, and eventually found herself on the board at COCA. When asked to be in Dancing with the St. Louis Stars, she wisely snagged as a partner its co-artistic director of dance, Antonio Douthit-Boyd.

So, on Jan. 26 at The Ritz-Carlton, Kristin and Antonio will perform a hip-hop ballet to Beyoncé in front of several hundred people, to benefit Independence Center. You might not be familiar with the center, but I am. As I’ve mentioned, I have OCD, which is a mental illness—and through a combination of therapy and medication, it is under control. But not everybody has the resources I do. Independence Center provides the services and resources a person with a serious, persistent mental illness needs to manage symptoms and live a healthy life. So besides the fun of watching non-professionals attempt to dance at the gala, you get a chance to support a great organization! (Visit for info.)

Sadly, I won’t be in town for the event, but they allow advance online voting with a $10 donation. So, dear reader, help me out here. Visit and vote for Kristinbecause I want my fearless friend to win!She is doing something I could never do. If she takes home the prize,I will celebrate by going for a walk in the woods.

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