Friday, October 9, 2015

A Pondering Walk With Cranky Village Creek Indian Ghosts

That jade colored body of water you are looking at here is Village Creek, which would seem to indicate I was at the Village Creek Natural Historical Area today to walk, jog or ride my bike.

Walking was the option today.

Before walking I learned from the tire doctor that the reason my left front tire seemed to be less inflated than it should be was because a screw had inserted itself into the tire.

I really don't like it when that happens.

Walking with the Indian Ghosts was completely uneventful today. I think the Indian Ghosts are being cranky because their most hated holiday of the year is about here.

Columbus Day.

Columbus Day really needs to have a name change. It's embarrassing. Canada doesn't have a Columbus Day. Why do we? Columbus never made it to what we know as the United States. It was on a few islands in the Caribbean that Columbus practiced mass genocide, among other atrocities.

Anyway, in addition to walking with the Indian Ghosts and wondering why there is so much ignorance in so much abundance in America I went to ALDI post Village Creek to get milk among other necessities.

And now the outer world is being dampened with water pellets, also known as rain.

What a day.....

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Jogging Around Fosdick Lake Getting Asked Why I Was Detained By Border Guards

What you are looking at here is a flock of Fosdick Ducks and Fosdick Pigeons enjoying the newly formed Fosdick Beach on Fosdick Lake in Fort Worth's Oakland Lake Park, where there is no Oakland Lake.

Why does Fort Worth have such an odd habit in its naming of various locations?

For decades Fort Worth called its little downtown, Sundance Square, where there was no square, but there were some large parking lots which many of Fort Worth's few tourists thought were Sundance Square. And upon those parking lots Fort Worth finally got around to building a square and then goofily redundantly named it Sundance Square Plaza.

And then there is calling a landlocked area of Fort Worth, Panther Island, where there is no island. And Panther Island Pavilion where there is no island or pavilion.

Anyway, I was having myself a mighty fine time jogging around Fosdick Lake when my phone made its Facebook message noise. I need to figure out how to make the phone stop making that noise. It's annoying.

I took a jogging break under the shade of a tree to quickly find the Facebook message was from my cousin Scott asking me a very odd question. As in what did I do to get detained by border guards on a day in June decades ago.

Detained by border guards? I resumed jogging and tried to figure out this puzzle. As I jogged along I could conjure no memory of having any trouble crossing the border into Canada.

And then I remembered.

The week after graduating  high school my long gone friend Russell and I roadtripped to California in my also long gone 65 Mustang Fastback. It sounded like a fun thing to walk across the border to Tijuana. But, upon getting to the entry to Mexico part of the trek we were asked to go in a building where we were asked questions and to show I.D.

The  problem was apparently I looked way too young to be going to Mexico without an adult. And then my I.D. indicated I was only 17, which confirmed I was too young to go to Mexico without an adult. Russell was 18, but at that point in time that did not qualify as an adult accompanying a minor. But was old enough to walk across to Mexico. Russell later got cranky at me for looking too young, as if I had any control over such a thing.

I don't remember much else about this alleged detention. Other than the border guard was nice about it all. Sort of apologetic. Told us it would not be a good idea to walk across the border, even if we were old enough.

Why would there be any record of this incident and how did my snoopy cousin Scott come to be in possession of this information? I feel as if my privacy has been violated, or some such thing.

The incident must not have been too traumatic because a couple years later I found myself again at the border crossing, this time not attempting to walk across, but instead drive into Tijuana in that aforementioned Mustang.

This time Russell was not along and there were no problems entering or exiting Mexico. I had way too much fun buying all sorts of bargains, then figuring out how to stuff them in my car. Some of that stuff made the trek to Texas, like my five foot tall statue of Cortez and a gold cobra.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Finding Favorite Cowboy Nephew Joey In Grapevine Calling Grandma

That is Spencer Jack's Uncle Joey on the left, which would make that Joey's Uncle Durango on the right.

Til today it had been over seven years since I last saw my Favorite Nephew Joey. I believe it was August 7, 2008, at Bay View State Park, in the Skagit Valley of Washington. That was also the first time I met Joey's nephew, Spencer Jack.

Seven years have flown by terribly fast. I remember remarking to the person who took me to Sea-Tac, August 20, 2008, that I might return in another 20 years. At the time I said that I didn't really think that it would be 20 years. Now I think it may be.

I met up with Joey at a McDonald's in Grapevine. The scheduled meeting time was 10:30. I arrived five minutes early and as soon as the McDonald's parking lot came in to view I saw Joey standing, waiting. I never remembered to ask how long he'd been waiting.

Joey asked if there was a park nearby we could go to for visiting purposes, rather than sit in McDonald's. I said there was, a short distance away. But before I drove us there I told Joey I had something for him. Before Joey saw what was in the bag I told him if he didn't want to fly it back home that that was fine, I'd just keep it. I told Joey that more than once I've have been weighed down with extra stuff, usually from my mama.

The worst case of that was when mom and dad met up with me in Las Vegas. They'd been on their first post-retirement cross country trip. Mom and dad found me in the pool at Treasure Island. We then went to Luxor  for the buffet and to ride the scary virtual reality ride that takes you deep into the earth. Leaving Luxor mom says something like, "By the way I have a box of Christmas presents I'd like you to take home and distribute". It was a HUGE box. I could barely carry it. I shipped it home via UPS. How did mom think I was going to get that box on a plane?

I digress.

So, Joey pulled out what was in the bag to find himself wearing a cowboy hat, which he quickly decided he was going to take on the plane with him when he flies out tomorrow morning.

Joey said he had something he had to give me before we took off for the park. He went back to his vehicle and returned with that which you see below.

Joey had told me previously he had something from my Favorite Nephew Jason and Spencer Jack to deliver to me. This was it. A belated happy birthday present. Joey asked if I was going to open it now or save it for later. I said I'd open it later. I'm glad I took the open later option. Had I opened it then I don't think I would have noticed that the white paper upon which Happy Belated Happy Birthday Uncle Durango was written was actually the front part of a homemade birthday card from Jason and Spencer Jack, including illustrations and a message from both Spencer Jack and his dad.

So, I sat the birthday box down and drove to the Tarantula Train Depot, where we eventually found a place to sit in the shade.

Joey and I had a lot to talk about. Some family matters, such as who is getting married, who is getting divorced. That type thing.

Joey's time in Texas is the longest he has been in the state, other than a two hour layover in 2005. The area of D/FW Joey has been traveling around in has been the North Dallas zone, and its suburbs. Joey remarked how everywhere he has been everything looks new. I told Joey that if we had more time I could show him some areas that do not look so new, the likes of which he'd likely not seen before.

Joey also said he was surprised by how green Texas is. Coming from the Evergreen State, which is currently more brown than usual, I can see why the green of North Texas would surprise. Joey is not the first Pacific Northwest visitor to tell me they expected it to be like a desert. I forgot to tell Joey that if he came back in the Spring it is even greener, and way more colorful, with wildflowers.

During Joey's short time in Texas he'd  already discovered the Texas freeway attribute that I quickly came to appreciate. The Texas Turnaround. Where you exit the freeway and the Texas Turnaround zips you under the overpass to enter the freeway going the opposite direction.

Joey asked how his Grandma and Grandpa are doing. I said, well, let's find out. I called, mom answered. I told mom she was on speaker phone and someone had something he wanted to say to her. Joey then said, "Hi Grandma." Mom then said something like, "Joey, is that you?" It was cuter hearing it than it sounds typing it. We talked to Joey's Grandma for a few minutes and then said bye.

Joey has been in Texas ramrodding some high tech sound system installation project at Lincoln Centre in Dallas. I asked Joey how it happens his company, way up north in Skagit County, comes a couple thousand miles to do this job. I asked if it is because there is no company in Texas which can do this sort of high tech stuff? Well, that was not the explanation. But, I can't repeat the explanation, as that might be giving away company secrets.

After a longer visit than we had scheduled it was time for Joey to head back to Dallas. But not before showing me photos of some of the BIG salmon Joey has reeled in. I think I mentioned previously, months ago, that Joey's big brother, FNJ, shipped me some of Joey's smoked salmon. Best smoked salmon ever.

I got back to my abode, made lunch and then opened what Joey delivered for Spencer Jack and his dad.

A trivial pursuit type game they found last summer in a store in Friday Harbor on San Juan Island.

Seeing Joey today was very deja vu. When I moved to Texas, Joey was in his last year of high school. Back then if you told me that in 2015 I would find myself meeting Joey in Grapevine, Texas because Joey was in town to install some sort of  electronic wizardry my feeble imagination would not have been able to conjure a scenario where that would happen, or make any sense.

But, there I was today, having myself a mighty fine time, meeting my Favorite Nephew Joey in Grapevine, Texas....

Elsie Hotpepper's Scary Halloween Costume

Last night Elsie Hotpepper sent me that which you see here, with no explanation as to what I was looking at.

But, it did not take me too long to figure out that this must be the 2015 Elsie Hotpepper Halloween costume.

To be clear, that is not Elsie Hotpepper in the photo.

That is a model modeling this year's Elsie Hotpepper Halloween costume.....

Beautiful Fort Worth V Piers The Likes Of Which The World Has Never Seen

See that giant Teeter Totter in the making? Isn't that one of the most beautiful pieces of construction you have ever seen? It's amazing. Possibly one of the current wonders of the modern world.

A blog comment from someone named Anonymous led me to see this Teeter Totter, due to the following comment made to a blogging....

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "I Did Not Know Seattle Pulled The Plug On Slide The City": 

More Trinity River Vision propaganda, in video form, courtesy of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram: Trinity River bridges taking shape

I tell you, the Star-Telegram, in cahoots with America's Biggest Boondoggle, also known as the Trinity River Uptown Central City Panther Island Vision, is utterly shameless in the spewing of embarrassing propaganda touting the little progress made in what has to be one of the most slow motion public works projects ever undertaken in America.

There were few Star-Telegram propaganda words accompanying this propaganda video, with the only text, in addition to the Trinity River bridges taking shape title, telling us "Fort Worth's signature V-shaped bridges are under construction and will eventually span the expanded river channel for the Trinity River Vision project."

How is that for a news flash? Eventually the bridges will span the channel they are being built to span? As opposed to what? Failing to do so? And why is the Star-Telegram going along with still calling these simple, ordinary, relatively small bridges "signature bridges"? These are not signature bridges.

You want to see a signature bridge, go to San Francisco, or go to New York City, or just drive a few miles to the east, to Dallas, where you will see a real signature bridge, completed, built over water, with another one under construction, also over water.

With that water being the Trinity River.

In the video we have one of the TRWD's many examples of what is known as Oliver Nepotism, Jim Oliver's relative, Matt Oliver, spouting some utter nonsense.

Matt Oliver appears to be reading the propaganda from a script, spouting nonsense like "Behind me you see one of the bridge's beautiful V piers taking shape."

Matt Oliver is talking about that which you see at the top, what I referred to as a giant Teeter Totter. Matt Oliver also let's us know that these three bridges will be finished in late 2017 or 2018. Matt Oliver also said something along the line that when the bridges are completed then construction of the bypass channel can begin.

Elsewhere in the video another propagandist repeats the propaganda that has become the TRV party line regarding the bridges, that being "It is easier to conduct construction over dry land, rather than wait for the area to be flooded over what is essentially a lake."

How many points of utter stupidity can you spot in that "It is easier to conduct construction over dry land, rather than wait for the area to be flooded over what is essentially a lake" sentence?

Who suggested waiting to build these bridges until after the area flooded, or more precisely, til after the Trinity River is diverted into the bypass channel? There is no possibility of water flowing under these bridges until a ditch is dug under them. And even then the bridges will still be over dry land until the Trinity River is diverted into the bypass channel.

It is easier to conduct this construction over dry land? Like I have already pointed out, what other logical option is there?

Oh, I just thought of another option. The bridges could be being constructed at the same time as the construction of the flood bypass channel, that totally dry flood bypass channel. Which would still have the bridges being built over dry land.

But that flood bypass channel can not be built now. Not because of any engineering reason. But because there are no funds to build the channel at the present time. Which is the real reason the bridges are being built over dry land, before a dry ditch is dug under them.

The flood bypass channel is going to essentially be a lake? This is the first time I've heard this new piece of propaganda. Will it be called Panther Lake?

I tell you, living at this location on the planet has to be what it was like to live in the Soviet Union in its Pravda propaganda spouting heyday. Where the government and its toadies would spout utter nonsense informing the Comrades of the wonders being done by the great Soviet Union, with few Comrades willing to speak up and point out the fact that the emperor has no clothes, lest they get thrown in the Gulag.

Well, at least in Soviet Fort Worth I can speak the truth to nonsensical propaganda without fearing I might get thrown into the Fort Worth Gulag.

I hope......

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

I Did Not Know Seattle Pulled The Plug On Slide The City

Before throwing it away, I once again thumbed through the latest quarterly update from America's Biggest Boondoggle. I wanted to make sure there was no mention made of the Cowtown Wakepark.

You know, the world's premiere urban wakeboard park which J.D. Granger said would give the locals the chance to participate in the fun sport of wakeboarding. Predictably, Cowtown Wakepark is now closed, awaiting "new management". Previously Boondoggle Updates made plenty of mentions about the wonders of the Cowtown Wakepark.

So, whilst thumbing through The Boondoggle's Update I once again saw the pages devoted to last summer's Slide the City event where thousands paid good money to slide a couple thousand feet down Main Street. I opined at the time that this should concern people as being an indicator that there are not enough fun things to do in the Fort Worth zone. Thousands sliding down a waterslide? Thousands inner tubing in a polluted river? It's just pitiful.

When I saw The Boondoggle's photos of the Fort Worth Slide the City event I remembered Seattle was supposed to also have a Slide the City event this past summer. I Googled to quickly learn the Seattle Slide the City event had been cancelled,  with Spokane and the Tri-Cities cancelling as well, all for pretty much the same reason.

Reasons of the sort which don't concern Fort Worth public officials, regarding the quality of water the city encourages its people to play in.

The screen cap above was from something called Geekwire.

A blurb from the Seattle Times article about pulling the plug, titled Huge Water Slide Won't Be Coming To Seattle This Year which explains the reasons for not allowing the City to Slide...

Slide the City, an event agency that rolls out 1,000-foot vinyl water slides in cities across the country, will not be coming to Seattle, Spokane and the Tri-Cities this summer because the company didn’t obtain necessary approval from county and state departments of health.

After reviewing the application, the state health department had questions regarding the water’s level of chlorine and ability to prevent illness, the safety of a portion of the slide that allows multiple people and the company’s plans for treating water before it empties into a Columbia River storm drain.

In a July 9 letter, the department asked for clarification on contamination, water-pressure levels and what hours and day the company hoped to plan the event.

King County health authorities, as well as officials from other jurisdictions, worked with the state department to evaluate the water-slide proposals.

Those stupid Washington government officials can be such kill joys. Worrying about public safety and water quality, in an area which has no water of the dirty, polluted Trinity River sort.....

Monday, October 5, 2015

Aunt Alice Called Last Night To Talk About Wade

It was a week ago Sunday that Aunt Alice's son, Wade, died.

Aunt Alice called me last night, successfully, for the first time since Wade died.

Aunt Alice was unable to answer many of the questions I had, due to the sad fact neither Aunt Alice, or Wade's dad, Uncle Albert, have been told the answers.

The Facebook Messenger phone app is of poor quality, which I indicated when Facebook inquired after the call ended, so I may have not heard correctly a thing or two.

But this is what I think I understand.

Wade had completed his first day on a new job at the Omak Walmart. I think Aunt Alice had driven Wade to Omak, with Wade expecting Uncle Albert to pick him up after work. I believe this was Friday. When Wade's shift ended, as he was waiting for a ride, he had a seizure. The Walmart manager had Wade brought to the Omak Hospital. I believe Aunt Alice was then called. A friend then drove Aunt Alice to Omak. They stayed with Wade for about 30 minutes, then left, not wanting to tire him out.

Aunt Alice does not know what happened the next day. Wade either left on his own, or was discharged by the hospital. But, he was not out of the hospital long when he must have had another seizure, though Aunt Alice does not know. He was then flown to Harborview Hospital in Seattle.

Alice did not go to Seattle. I think Albert may have. Alice had no one to take her to Seattle. Wade died the next morning. Aunt Alice has no information about any details. This seems both sad and hard to understand.

Wade will be buried on Wednesday in the cemetery in a little town near Tonasket called Loomis. Aunt Alice is not quite sure how she is getting to the burial.

Uncle Albert's sister, Sharon, set up a GoFundMe webpage, which you see screen capped above, to help raise money for Wade Hudson Funeral Expenses.

From the Wade Hudson Funeral Expenses GoFundMe webpage....

Thank you everyone who has donated. Wade is remembered with love and thankfulness for the time we had him with us. His father Albert and Mother Alice are very grateful. God bless you kind people.

Wade's Aunt Sharon
My precious nephew, Wade Hudson died unexpectedly Sunday, September 26, 2015. He was taken from us suddenly and tragically and died from brain injuries. My brother, Albert Hudson is left to not only grieve for his son but to bear the expenses of a funeral and burial costs. We are asking for donations to help Albert with the expenses. Wade is survived by his daughter, LaVada Hudson, father Albert Hudson, mother Alice Hudson. Any donation will help even if only 5 dollars. Thank you.

Wade's Uncle Roger
A huge THANK YOU to all who have pitched in to help out with this. Please feel free to reach out folks and post on social media so others can see this cause and join in. A couple dollars from a lot of people can help cover costs for the burial. Albert is facing a lot of other costs beyond the $2000 needed to bury Wade. This $2000 will cover the cost of a burial plot in Loomis, the concrete liner, the fees for digging the hole and a pine casket. Nothing extravagant is planned and nobody is looking to make a buck off this cause. You all are wonderful and will be blessed for helping out with what you can.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

I Did Not Almost Drown Or Fall Yesterday At Fort Worth's Heritage Park

Yesterday when I blogged about a Saturday Morning Walk Around Downtown Fort Worth With Sundance Square Plaza Video I mentioned that I had also walked around the closed, cyclone fence surrounded eyesore known as Heritage Park. I said that I would blog about this the following day, likely in the morning.

But, when Sunday morning came I forgot about blogging about  Heritage Park, til now.

The first time I visited downtown Fort Worth's #1 eyesore it was easy to get past the boarded up parts and cyclone fence barriers. Now, years later, the boarded up aspect of the eyesore is gone. With the cyclone fence much more substantial, with no openings allowing easy access. There are "PARK CLOSED" signs, but no "KEEP OUT" signs, but I kept out anyway.

In the above photo on the cement wall on the left you can see a little white rectangle. That little white rectangle is what you see below.

I believe this sign must have been added after the Water Gardens drownings. I do not recollect seeing this sign on Heritage Park visits prior to the drownings.

RISK OF DROWNING? In what? None of the Heritage Park water features were deep enough to drown in. I suppose if one fainted and fell face down in six inches of water one might drown.

RISK OF SEVERE INJURY FROM FALLS IN HIGH OVERLOOK  AREAS? Well, duh. That  is sort of stating the obvious, isn't it?

In all the years Heritage Park was open did anyone get remotely close to drowning? Did anyone fall from any of the high overlook areas? It would be rather difficult to fall from any of the high overlook areas. One would have to somehow get over the high guard rail.

Below you get a look at part of the CLOSED PARK. The years of neglect are starting to show.

The reasons given by the city for closing Heritage Park have seemed bogus to me from the start. The initial reason was the ridiculous drowning risk and the liability faced by the city, fearing another lawsuit such as what followed the Water Garden drownings.

Later the city made claims that there were structural issues with Heritage Park's walkways. Still later mechanical issues were added, as in water pump problems. Yet somehow when Heritage Park was still open there seemed to be no problem with the water flowing.  And the cement structures appeared to be solid as a rock.

And now, all these years later the city is claiming it will  take a few million bucks to restore Heritage Park from the damage done by its bogus closing. How many more years will this embarrassment continue to fester in downtown Fort Worth.  Seems impossible, what with it being the best downtown in America and the envy of the entire nation.

Below is video of yesterday's look at Heritage Park....

My Favorite Nephew Joey Did Not Hike The Tandy Hills With Me Today

The drought is causing a lot of wilting of the Tandy Hills foliage, that or maybe it is just that wilting Fall time of year.

There are still wildflowers blooming, like this delicate orchid-like five petal beauty you see here.

No. My Favorite Nephew Joey did not go hill hiking with me today.

Joey's grandma asked me if I am going to see Joey whilst he is in town. I do not have an answer to that question.

When Joey and I were exchanging text messages yesterday no mention was made of any free time. Joey is here to work on a sound dimension project of some sort.

Joey said he might take an hour and go see Dealey Plaza today or tomorrow. I assume that means Joey has a vehicle. What Joey does not have is the knowledge of what a challenge it is to find a place to park in downtown Dallas. That, and finding Dealey Plaza. I remember my first attempt, May 8, 1998, was aborted. I found the JFK Memorial, near Dealey Plaza, but not the plaza. Now that I know where Dealey Plaza is it seems hard to understand that I ever had a problem  finding it.

Changing the subject back to the Tandy Hills.

Last week I looked up the hill from the trail I was on and saw what you see below.

Today I decided to take a closer look. It's an odd collection of items. The big thing in the middle appeared to be a sleeping bag. The white thing on the right appeared to be a laundry basket. It looked like the basket was used to carry stuff, some of which was still in the basket. Everything looked like useless junk, not stuff of the sort one might have in an emergency homeless person situation. One of the items was a Christmas tree ornament. A pair of Levi jeans lay crumpled on the sleeping bag.

Anyway, I had myself a mighty fine time hill hiking today. Cool temperatures and I had a couple rare human encounters. Usually I have the hills all to myself.....

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Spencer Jack's Uncle Joey Has Temporarily Moved To Texas

That is Spencer Jack's Uncle, my Favorite Nephew Joey, aka FNJ2, you are looking at here.

A few days ago I blogged about Wikipedia Having Me Confused About Dallas.

That blogging generated several comments from someone named Anonymous which left me confused and commenting myself, once....

Anonymous said...
I have recently learned that one of your FNJ's will be Dallas inbound tomorrow morning. I suppose you can task him with solving the Dallas's namesake mystery.

Durango said...
Anonymous, which of the three FNJ's is in Dallas tomorrow morning? Why have I not been informed of the impending inboundment? Since the only airport in Dallas which lands big planes is Love Field, I assume this is where the FNJ is landing, not at D/FW International, which is not in Dallas, but is sort of in Fort Worth at its south end.

Anonymous said...
Durango, the FNJ will be staying in the Addison area, and he is wondering if this is in a dry county, and if so, how does one obtain beer? Also, I have been informed that he has packed his cowboy hat in hopes of fitting in with ya all.

Anonymous said...
Update: FNJ is indeed traveling to DFW, not Love field. He has now been cleared by TSA Agents in Seattle. He attempted to fly by his alias name and was told that was not allowed. Apparently they have a policy of not allowing baby Kangaroos on their DFW outbound aircraft.


The last Anonymous comment provided a good clue as to which of the FNJ's was flying to Texas. The flying out of Seattle info eliminated FNJ3, that being Favorite Nephew Jeremy, since he would be flying out of Phoenix. The mention of baby Kangaroos clued me that the FNJ must be FNJ2, as in Favorite Nephew Joey.

When I talked to my mom this morning it was confirmed that Joey is in Texas. But mom did not know where. I told mom it was in Addison Joey was located and that I drove them through Addison the last time they were in Texas.

And now FNJ2's current Texas residency has been confirmed by FNJ2 himself, via a text message....

Howdy FUD, I'm having myself a mighty fine time so far in the Great State of Texas. Currently in the Addison part of north Dallas working at the Lincoln Centre. Might have an hour tomorrow or Monday to go and see Dealey Plaza. FNJ2

The above text  message was followed by several more, from which I learned FNJ2 is here through October 8, staying on the 10th floor of a hotel, enjoying the view. Of what, FNJ2 did not say.

So far no arrangement has been made for FNJ2 to meet up with his FUD....