Saturday, November 28, 2009

The Fort Worth Star-Telegram Sort Of Sees Purple

My one reader may remember how a time or two I took issue with some erroneous Fort Worth Star-Telegram reporting.

It's been so long now I forget what the final straw was that caused me to cancel my subscription.

But, this morning reminded me of the type of thing that caused me to doubt pretty much anything I read in that paper, because over and over again when a Star-Telegram article was about something I had eye-witness knowledge of, I would spot bizarre errors.

Like over and over again touting a little lame collection of shops called the Sante Fe Rail Market as being modeled after Seattle's Pike Place Market and being the first public market in Texas. Soon I was to discover not only was it not the first public market in Texas, it was not even the first public market in Fort Worth!

Anyway, back to this morning's Star-Telegram.

In an article about yesterday's predictable dyeing the Trinity River Purple Boondoggle, titled "TCU fans are purple, even if the Trinity isn't" were a few odd pieces of information.

First off, please note the the title of the article accurately reported that the Trinity did not turn purple yesterday.

Yet in the article you read the following...

"We started this morning at 2 a.m., and we will go until it runs out," said Jim Oliver, water district general manager.

He said he didn’t know how long the river would remain purple, as the water district had never tried to dye it before.

"At least a day or two," he said.

They started what at 2am??? Nothing was sprayed into the Horned Frog River until Moncrief poured his glass of purple dye sometime after 10am. The Star-Telegram has this water district manager, Jim Oliver, saying he did not know how long the river would remain purple. And then in the next sentence he is saying it'll stay purple "At least a day or two."

The article has Moncrief saying he'd been a tad worried the past couple days about whether the Trinity River would really turn purple. I'll copy directly from the article...

Mayor Mike Moncrief admitted that he’s been a tad bit worried the past couple of days.

Would the Trinity River really turn purple?

"I did sleep with one eye open," Moncrief joked Friday morning while standing on the riverbank, where trucks were shooting purple dye into the water.

"But it is purple now, and it will be purple tomorrow."

Uh, it was not purple then and it certainly is not purple today. And trucks were not shooting purple dye into the water. It was one truck and it was spraying something into the air, not pumping anything into the river, as you can clearly see in the picture above.

I'd not heard Mayor Mike Moncrief speak before yesterday. I have had others tell me how embarrassing he can be. I totally get that now. He slept with one eye open? Due to worrying about dyeing a river? How does he sleep without worrying about getting indicted for corruption? How does he sleep without worrying about cutting back on library hours? How does he sleep without worrying about closing all the city pools?

Here's another Moncrief quote from the purple river article...

"To see people out here, in large numbers, young and old, with helicopters flying overhead, you can feel the energy in the air," he said. "There is nothing Fort Worth can’t do."

To which the article retorts, accurately, "Well, maybe one thing."

As in Fort Worth can't successfully dye a river purple. As for helicopters, in the plural, flying overhead, I saw one helicopter. It made one pass sometime after 10, but before the pseudo dye job began. The helicoptor was well gone before Moncrief finished with his mayoral decree and ceremonial dumping of his purple kool-aid into the former Trinity River.

To Moncrief's statement that the river will be purple tomorrow, the Star-Telegram said...

Well, maybe not. At 2 p.m. Friday, several hours after the dye briefly turned the river purple, the river looked the way it usually does — muddy brown.

Once more reporting that the river was turned "briefly" purple. It was not remotely purple, even briefly. I do not know how the river looked at 2pm, but at 10am it did not look brown or muddy. As I said yesterday, the river was looking a shade of purple. But not from any dye job.

I don't know if it is true or not (because I read it in the Star-Telegram) but the article about the failed dye attempt said the dye was donated by Streams & Valleys, with the Tarrant Regional Water District handling the details, "such as pumping dye into the river."

Again, I saw no pumping yesterday. I saw some material being sprayed from a truck, material that only altered the look of the river by causing a sort of white foam, which quickly dissipated. You can see that in the picture.

As another example of how brain dead dumb this operation was, make note of where the "dye" is being sprayed. On the blocked side of a dam-like structure, which has an opening in the middle that the river rushes through. Thus, whatever was being sprayed, yesterday, was quickly whooshed through that narrow funnel and sent merrily downstream, with no detectable purple left in its wake.

Except for the purple provided by Mother Nature.

One more thing. The dye was donated, but how much did the rest of this latest Fort Worth Boondoggle cost the city?


Anonymous said...

I take it that the Startlegram can't/won't declare that other cities will be "green with envy" (or is it purple)now, huh? They should get Mayor Gasbag to attempt to walk on water on Monday or Tuesday--when the high will be around 50 degrees.

Anonymous said...

I was there on Saturday early around 7 am when they were pumping and it was purple I commend their effort and spirit!

Durango said...

Anonymous #2----
You must have been drinking the Kool-Aid if you think you saw purple pumping going on as the sun came up on Saturday.

Cheap Tricks and Costly Truths said...

Maybe with all the dollar $ign$ Mayor Mikey has in his eyes, it causes him to see more of something than there really is...such as lot$ of helicopter$, lot$ of people$, and lot$ of purple water$. BUT as I ponder on that...the same dollar $ign$ prevent him from seeing things that are actually there, as well...such as eminent domain abuse, dirty water, damaged land and polluted air.

Durango said...

Well, if you saw Mayor Mikey up close, like I now have, it sort of causes you to cut him slack. He looks like a human weasel. I'm not sure he is all there in the upstairs zone. He probably thought he was looking at thousands of people staring at a bright purple river while dozens of helicopters filmed the spectacle from the air. I really should write for the Star-Telegram. If they're gonna make up stuff, they should do it with gusto.

Cheap Tricks and Costly Truths said...

Hmmm...a weasel that's gone daft? How interesting. I'd think you'd make a lovely edition to the 'gram.