Friday, October 31, 2014

FW Weekly Has Me Doing Some More Fort Worth Multipurpose Arena Questioning

I found Ed Bass and Betsy Price in my mailbox again today. Along with a long list of co-horts calling themselves co-chairs, co-horting to co-chair a huge committee of committed Fort Worth citizens determined to convince Fort Worth voters to vote on Three Propositions to impose Three User Fees to pay for half of a new Fort Worth Multipurpose Arena.

I have opined previously that I think it is absurd to ask voters to vote on something as goofy as whether or not to charge a $1 or $2 fee per day for the use of a livestock stall in the new arena. Near as I can tell I am the only person who finds this to be ridiculous.


This week's Fort Worth Weekly's Metro section is all about the proposed arena and asks some questions that really need answering, in an  article titled Worth Questioning.

In the FW Weekly article I got an answer to a question I have opined about previously. As in, are we to think these Three Propositions are a Yes or No vote on the arena? As in if the voters vote NO, does that mean NO arena? The ballot verbiage implies that that is the case, that No means no. I blogged about the ballot verbiage after I voted.

Regarding if voting NO means no arena, the following paragraph in the FW Weekly article indicated NO does not mean no arena....

"At a recent public meeting to discuss the arena, a city official told the crowd that if the voters don’t approve the tax measures, the project will still move forward with alternate sources of funding."

The FW Weekly article addresses another arena issue, one I had wondered about but did not know enough about to the point I felt like opining about it.

The "it" to which I refer is the cost of the arena. $450,000. That is almost a half billion dollars.

The proposed arena only holds, at its max, 14,000 people when it is in concert mode, only 9,000 in rodeo mode.

That is a rather puny arena for a lot of money.

I figured maybe it was all those livestock stalls for rent for $1 which might be the reason for the high price tag, that it was the multipurpose aspect that raised the cost.

What perplexed me is similar public works of which I am aware cost less than the cost of this little arena. Like the new Seattle Seahawk Stadium and the Seattle Mariner Ballpark. The Seahawk Stadium may have cost in the half billion dollar zone, I don't remember for sure. But, these are big venues able to entertain way more people than Fort Worth's proposed little arena.

Plus, the Seattle venues are right next to each other, with well designed means to move traffic in and out of the area, including freeway connections directly to the venues, underground transit in the form of light rail and buses. And this in a busy downtown zone.

The FW Weekly article touches on the lack of transit planning for the new Fort Worth Arena. I have received several blog comments from people who live in the Arlington Heights neighborhood impacted by events held in the Stock Show zone who are not happy about the bad planning and who foresee traffic nightmares.

The congested West 7th mess in the same area is an example of how bad Fort Worth is at adding needed infrastructure when new development occurs.

The FW Weekly article also touches on the costs vs. size issue, and has better comparisons than my use of the Seattle venues....

"They question why the cost is so high compared to similar event centers. The cost of the arena even makes the Cowboys’ huge Arlington stadium look like a bargain. AT&T Stadium has almost 10 times the capacity of the proposed Fort Worth arena but only three times the price tag."

"The proposed arena would hold 14,000 people for concerts and about 9,000 for rodeos and sporting events. It will cost 20 percent more ($100 million) than a similar-sized one on the Las Vegas strip that has a 20,000-seat capacity. The Intrust Bank Arena in Wichita, Kan., can hold nearly 16,000 people but will cost only half of what’s being planned in Fort Worth. Construction began on the Vegas arena earlier this year; the Intrust arena was built in 2010."

In addition to mailers, advertisements and yard signs the Forward Fort Worth Partnership, PAC has also been airing radio ads. In those ads Betsy Price touts how this new little arena will bring back big concerts to Fort Worth. And big sporting events.

Why would a concert booker book his act in a small arena that can sell only 14,000 tickets when other venues in the D/FW Metroplex can hold concerts which can sell multiple times 14,000 tickets?

As for a sporting event. Same thing. The only sport I can think of which might be held in such a small arena would be basketball. I assume the basketball capacity would be about the same as that for a rodeo, as in 9,000 spectators.

Methinks this proposed new Fort Worth arena idea needs to be sent back to the drawing board to come up with a new plan which delivers much more bang for the buck, as in way more seats for the almost half billion dollars. And which addresses the traffic issues.

And let the voters actually vote on the thing, for gawdsakes, like grown up towns do.....

Today I Rolled Wheels Over The Neighborhood For A Hilltop View Of Nurse Martha's Living Care Center

Early this morning I had myself a mighty fine time in the not too cool pool. The air was chilled into the 50s zone, with the pool feeling a bit warmer.

In the noon time frame I felt the need for speed so I opted to roll my wheels to the west to explore part of my neighborhood I'd not previously explored.

Driving west on Boca Raton I have long noticed a road to the right, the last road before Boca Raton terminates at Woodhaven Boulevard.

My rolling goal today was to roll down that road I'd not rolled before, then continue on to Quanah Parker Park.

Prior to getting to my intended right turn I took an unplanned right turn to the north, on Country Club Drive. That took me to a convoluted confusion of roads which eventually had me parking my handlebars to take the photo you see above, high above my neighborhood golf course, looking west at Nurse Martha's Living Care Center in the distance.

Back on my wheels I was soon going down a steep hill, then up a steep hill, then I took a right into an area of beautiful homes. That soon came to another steep downhill, which dead ended at a golf course hole. I reversed course and eventually found myself on Doral Avenue, which was the new road I had intended to roll on today, albeit coming on to it from the south, but instead I found myself exiting it from the north.

Continuing on to Quanah Parker Park I was surprised to find the route there, via the aforementioned Woodhaven Boulevard, had marked bike lanes on both sides of the street. I have driven this road countless times and never noticed it had bike lanes.

I really need to learn to be more observant.

I got to Quanah Parker Park, rolled that park's paved trail, then reversed course back to my abode.

Today's rolling through the neighborhood was a bit of a revelation to me. Years ago to get me some hill hiking action I would drive 25 miles to Cedar Hills State  Park. Or over 50 miles to Dinosaur Valley State Park.

And then I discovered the Tandy Hills, less than four miles from my abode.

When I lived in Washington I frequently biked on roads. In Texas I found that to not be as pleasant and safe feeling as I used to feel in Washington. But, all these roads I have now found right in my neighborhood, they remind me of why I felt perfectly safe rolling in Mount Vernon.

It appalls me to think of it now, because I now can not imagine doing so, but I actually biked all the way from where I lived in Bellingham to Mount Vernon. More than once. Both directions. That is over 30 miles, over roads with fast traffic and gravel shoulders. I was young and stupid.

When I lived in east Mount Vernon for about 14 years, before moving to Texas, my main bike riding was to simply roll down the hill from my abode and choose to go up a steep hill to the Eaglemont Golf Course to pedal its very hilly golf cart trails. Or roll the trails that cut across Mount Vernon, all the way to the Skagit River where I would access the river dike, roll around the riverbend zone and then head up steep Hoag Hill on the way back to my abode. About a 20 mile loop.

It had never occurred to me before, but how odd that little Mount Vernon, population around 30,000, would have non-vehicular paved trails one could use to get around the town, whilst the town I am currently in, Fort Worth, population around 800,000, does not have any non-vehicular paved trails that take one all over the town.

The paved Trinity River trails don't count. Although, those trails are convenient when I don't want to drive all the way to the Woodshed Smokehouse for lunch. I can simply park at Gateway Park and then bike the twenty-some miles to the Woodshed Smokehouse....

On Tuesday Vote To Set The Clock Back 50 Years To A Time Of Liberal Progress

I found that which you see on the left on Facebook.

I found it to be both amusing and to make no sense.

I suppose though if one was a right wing nut job, then I guess voting Tuesday to NOT set the country back 50 years might make sense, in an ignorant sort of way.

In the November election 50 years ago my favorite Texan, Lyndon Baines Johnson, won the presidency in one of the biggest landslides in presidential election history.

Along with LBJ getting elected president, after having become president due to the unfortunate demise of John F. Kennedy, the Democrats also increased their majorities in both houses of Congress.

When LBJ assumed the presidency in 1963 he used his highly evolved political skills to pass all sorts of legislation which resulted in things like new libraries, schools, hospitals, roads. The one thing LBJ was not able to pass, until after the election of 1964, was augmenting Social Security to provide medical care for the aged. That had to wait til 1965 when LBJ began to expand his Great Society programs.

In addition to what became known as Medicare, other anti-poverty programs were expanded, along with a multi-billion dollar federal aid to education program. Civil rights bills were passed which were first proposed way back when Harry Truman was doing a good job as a Democrat president.

It was Harry Truman who, in his Fair Deal, first proposed what later became Medicare. When it came time to sign the Medicare Act into law, LBJ flew to Independence, Missouri so that Harry Truman could be present at the signing of the bill.

Expanding Social Security, Medicare, Civil Rights, other social programs. That is the legacy of the election of 50 years ago.

Only the most extremist right wing nut job in 2014 would dare suggest terminating Social Security or Medicare.

Or a Rick Perry type, too dense to understand why it would be a good idea for Texas to accept the Medicare expansion concept.

So, to me, it would be a very good thing if on Tuesday America gets set back 50 years to the time when one of the greatest Texans in history did some mighty fine things for all of America. Mighty fine things a Rick Perry, Greg Abbott, Ted Cruz and others of their limited ilk would never consider doing....

Thursday, October 30, 2014

The Former Chesapeake Energy Parade Of Lights Bringing Holiday Spirit To Downtown Fort Worth

Incoming email from Downtown Fort Worth, Inc. has among its plethora of information what appears to be a bit of misinformation.

This upcoming day after Thanksgiving, November 28, 2014, to be precise, for the 32nd year in a row, the annual Parade of Lights will take place.

The message from Downtown Fort Worth, Inc. is calling this the 32nd annual XTO Energy Parade of Lights.

I know my memory is shot, but I know for a fact that XTO Energy has not been the sponsor of this parade for 32 years.

Why, just a year or two ago it was the now disgraced and run out of town (for the most part) Chesapeake Energy which had its name attached to this parade.

How did the Chesapeake divorce from this parade take place? Did Chesapeake Energy leave the parade after Fort Worth and multiple prominent people in Fort Worth sued Chesapeake Energy? Or did Downtown Fort Worth, Inc. kick Chesapeake Energy out of the house, so to speak?

And why, oh why, after having this parade sponsored by one disgraced gas driller, would whoever decides such things agree to have it sponsored by another gas driller?

All I know for sure is the Parade of Lights, whoever the sponsor is, is a very good parade, attended by thousands, even if the temperature is uncooperative.

I have watched the Parade of Lights twice and found myself impressed twice, with how downtown Fort Worth can go from being a ghost town on the busiest shopping day of the year and then that night come alive with an extremely bright, extremely well done parade.

But, after the parade is over, in downtown Fort Worth there are no department stores for the parade goers to go to to continue their Christmas shopping....

Are We On The Air With Elsie On Radio Hotpepper?

I don't quite know what to make of this photo attached to an incoming email.

Apparently RADIO HOTPEPPER is on the air, located at AM 1220 on your old radio's dial.

Elsie Hotpepper has so many irons in so many fires I can not be the only one who has trouble keeping up with where or what or who the Hotpepper is burning at any particular point in time.

I must say Elsie Hotpepper does have a very radio friendly voice, tailor made for broadcast.

I am guessing that RADIO HOTPEPPER is a call-in talk show.

Could Elsie Hotpepper be about to become our first female Rush Limbaugh, something America has long been in dire need of hearing on its radio waves? You know, a female voice of reason counteracting right wing male voices of unreasonableness?

Well, I guess I will have to tune in to find out exactly what it is Elsie Hotpepper is up to this time....

A Pre-Halloween Visit With The Village Creek Indian Ghosts Prior To Trick Or Treating With Butter From ALDI

Today I needed to get myself a pound of butter at ALDI, along with other weight gain nutrients, so I decided prior to getting fat gain enablers, I'd go to Arlington to the Village Creek Natural Historical Area to check in on the Indian Ghosts on the day before one of their favorite holidays.


All of which explains why you see my handlebars parked on the Village Creek paved trail.

Upon arrival at the Natural Area's paved parking lot I saw an Arlington Animal Control Officer releasing several opossums back to the semi-wild. I see this so often I can not help but conclude that Arlington is over run with possums.

I did not get any candy type material at ALDI to hand out to trick or treaters tomorrow. I get no trick or treaters. I am behind a security fence which blocks trick or treaters.

When I lived in Mount Vernon I would get 100s of trick or treaters on a good night with good weather. A rainy Halloween would cut down the number of beggars. My house was mid way up a steep cul-de-sac, with the walk to the front door up a long flight of stairs.

Due to it being a nice neighborhood people would come from other areas to trick or treat me and my neighbors. This never bothered me. A couple days ago I read on Facebook a discussion among people taking umbrage at the gall someone from another neighborhood would intrude to do some candy begging.

This attitude seemed sort of offputting to me. That and sort of meanspirited.

Anyway, it's time for lunch now. Oodles of butter will be incorporated into that which I will be eating, but no candy....

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Today It Is Chuck Norris Who Wants Me To Help Greg Abbott Save Texas

Yesterday when I returned to my computer after voting for Wendy Davis I found email from the Republican opponent of Wendy Davis, Greg Abbott, trying to enlist my help in his efforts to stop the federal government from stealing private property in Texas.

The stealing of private property in Texas is a serious problem which happens all too frequently, but I'm only aware of Republican-related private property stealing, such as that which was done in Arlington to build the Dallas Cowboys a new stadium, and that which is being done in Fort Worth to facilitate a boondoggle known as the Trinity River Vision.

I digress.

So, yesterday, for reasons unknown to me, I got email from Greg Abbott, with his fervent plea for my help. Today I got email from a Greg Abbott lackey named Chuck Norris, with the email's subject line being "Because I Said So".

Chuck Norris is an actor, I think.

In the email, screencapped above, with a video of Chuck Norris removed because it caused the screencapping to malfunction, Chuck Norris says "It's been said that guns have two enemies...rust and politicians."

I have never heard that said, til Chuck said it. Personally, I think the worst enemy of guns are morons who use guns to wreak havoc on innocent people.

Apparently among the gun enemies, according to Chuck, is President Obama and his allies, who Chuck thinks are anti-gun politicians.

Additionally Chuck feels Greg Abbott needs my help in his fight to protect our Second Amendment rights, and other rights guaranteed to us by the Constitution.

If rights are guaranteed by the Constitution why do Chuck and Greg feel we are in danger of losing them? Are there proposed Constitutional Amendments of which I am unaware?

Chuck also opines that there are some liberals in Texas who want to impose gun control in Texas with outrageous ideas like tampering with concealed carry laws and banning gun shows within a city's limits.

Chuck thinks those progressive sorts who think we need some additional gun controls are just backwards.

I am drawing a blank right now as to what the psychological term is for people who project on to others what they are unable to face in themselves. You know, like calling someones thinking backwards when it is your thinking which thinks in the wrong direction.

Chuck also lets us know that if Greg Abbott gets elected he will make sure that the next four years in Texas don't look like the last six years under Barack Obama.

Yeah, I agree, that really makes no sense at all.

I thought Texas was doing just peachy under the enlightened leadership of Rick Perry, leadership which has thwarted much of what Obama policies have done for the rest of America.

Things like expanding Medicare.

Perry blocked expanding Medicare so we in Texas were not faced with the spectacle of seeing who knows how many millions of poor Texans able to afford medical insurance for the first time in their lives.

Why am I getting these embarrassing emails from the embarrassing Greg Abbott and his equally embarrassing lackeys?

Not that I mind, too much.....

A Fixed Flat Had Me Rolling My Handlebars Around My Neighborhood Today

Today, weather-wise, is just about as perfect as perfect can get at my current location on the planet.

One in the afternoon with the outer world warmed to 70 degrees, clear blue sky, little wind.


For a bike ride.

On Monday I aborted a bike ride when I discovered my rear tire had completely flattened. I got around to fixing the flat this morning, hence today's bike ride tour of my neighborhood.

Golfers were golfing in droves at my neighborhood golf course today. Which indicates to me that golfers like perfect weather conditions too.

This morning's early morning swim was quite pleasant as well, with the water being warmer than the air's somewhat chilly 55 degrees.

For quite some time I have been reading, on Facebook, the running exploits of a young runner named John. John runs wherever he goes, with most of his running taking place in the D/FW zone. But, John seems to be constantly flying to various locations, where he still does his running. A couple weeks ago it was the Burke Gilman trail in Seattle. I recollect reading of a John run along the Hudson River in New York City. Runs in Chicago. Runs in San Francisco. Other runs I am not remembering right now.

So, yesterday, inspired by John, I decided to go jogging. Back in the last century jogging was my main exercise. I could run for miles. Well, yesterday I was about 5 minutes into jogging when I decided I'd stick with the biking, hiking, swimming and long walks. Jogging was too jarring on my elderly bones....

Betty Jo Bouvier's Sedro-Woolley Big Brown Bear Brouhaha

Last night in my email inbox there was an email from the Wild Woman of Woolley, Betty Jo Bouvier.

Among the things Betty Jo mentioned in the email was the fact that a Big Brown Bear had moved in to town, with that town being Sedro Woolley in my old home zone of the Skagit Valley.

The Big Brown Bear had taken up residence in a tree a couple blocks from Betty Jo's house.

Now, you reading this in Texas, particularly in the Dallas/Fort Worth zone, likely think this is probably not all that unusual, particularly if you are aware that the Cascade mountains are a bear habitat, with lots of bears living there.

However, though Sedro Woolley is somewhat close to the mountains, it is located in the river zone of the Skagit Valley, as in the Skagit River flows by the town.

For a Big Brown Bear to get a couple blocks from Betty Jo Bouvier the bear would have had to cross multiple roads, gotten around multiple fenced off farms and residences. Plus Betty Jo pretty much lives in the center of town. Was the bear not seen by anyone as it walked the streets of Sedro Woolley before climbing up a tree?

All my years living in the Skagit Valley I do not recollect a bear showing up in any of the Skagit Valley towns. I do recollect, decades ago, a big moose creating a sensation by wandering around the valley. I recollect seeing that moose whilst driving on Interstate 5.

To be clear, that was me driving on Interstate 5, not the moose.

Years ago, I think the year was 1996, I floated the Lady of the Lake from Chelan to Stehekin in North Cascades National Park. Soon upon checking in at the National Park Lodge we saw a small brown bear climbing a nearby tree. That was to be the first of dozens of bear sightings.

Soon thereafter we were riding our bikes through an abandoned apple orchard to find a herd of bears having themselves a mighty fine time gorging on delicious apples.

On our last day in Stehekin a small brown bear, it may have been the one we saw upon arrival, was having fun playing on the second floor of the lodge. A crowd gathered, rangers showed up. The rangers captured the bear and mortified the crowd by informing us the bear had to be destroyed due to the fact that it had lost its fear of humans. This news did not go over well with the crowd.

I made three webpages of that visit to Stehekin, on one of those pages you can see a photo of the soon to be executed bear.

As for Betty Jo's Big Brown Bear.

Another email from Betty Jo arrived this morning. That email included the picture you see above of the Woolley Big Brown Bear, plus the news that in attempt to get the bear out of the tree it had been shot with a tranquilizer, which caused the bear to fall out of the tree, rendered dead from the fall.

What did the shooters think was going to happen? Shooting a bear in a tree with a tranquilizer? Did they think the tranquilizer would just calm the bear down with the bear calmly climbing out of the tree?

Bigger question is what would cause a Big Brown Bear to leave the safety of the mountains? Is this the start of a trend?

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

To Get His Vote Stenotrophomonas Wants An Abbott Rant About Taking Private Citizens' Rights

Earlier today I blogged about Greg Abbott's overstepping of Texas boundaries.

In that blogging I sort of indicated that I am a bit appalled at the idea that Texas may be electing yet another Republican as governor of their mighty fine state.

The rest of America should be concerned.

Both of the previous Texas Republican governors made a run at the U.S. presidency, with one of them winning.


A mistake from which America is still recovering.

This latest possible Texas Republican governor seems to be the worst of the trio, to me.

After I blogged about Greg Abbott and his overstepping issues, Mr. Stenotrophomonas made a comment which pointed me to a project about which I was not familiar and which seems to do a good job at explaining why Greg Abbott should not be the next governor of Texas.

Stenotrophomonas has left a new comment on your post "Greg Abbott Wants To Hear My Ideas About Overstepping Texas Boundaries & So I Obliged Him":

I'll vote for Abbott if, within the next six days, he puts out a rant about Rule 37 exceptions and how they enable drilling companies to swoop in and take private citizens' unleased mineral rights.

Probably won't happen. F'ing crook.

Lone Star Project

Texas has a terribly low voter turnout. I do not understand why this is the case. Voting in Texas is relatively easy, even with the controversial I.D. requirement. The poll workers make the experience quite pleasant. If a voter is confused by the video game machine one uses to early vote, the poll workers kindly explain how to work the gadget.

Are some Texans for some reason intimidated about voting? Is that why they've never voted? It really is inexcusable, in my opinion, for someone over the age of 18, not to vote.

With so many regular Texans not voting you get bad results, such as someone like Greg Abbott, or Rick Perry, being your governor.

The low voter turnout really is appalling. The results are often proof that voting does matter. As in, by voting you can either end up with someone like Greg Abbott as your governor.

Or Wendy Davis.

I don't see how any decent minded Texan would not conclude Wendy Davis is the better choice.

Both for Texas.

And America.....

Greg Abbott Wants To Hear My Ideas About Overstepping Texas Boundaries & So I Obliged Him

Why am I getting email from Greg Abbott?

Yesterday I voted for Wendy Davis to be the next governor of Texas.

I did not vote for any of the oodles of Republicans on the ballot.

Now, apparently, Greg Abbott wants to hear my ideas for stopping the federal government from overstepping its boundaries.


What does that even mean?

What boundaries does this right wing nut job think the federal government is overstepping?

The boundary between Mexico and the United States? The boundary between Canada and the United States? The boundary between Texas and Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico and Colorado?

The email from Greg Abbott starts off with him telling me that he is opposed to the Bureau of Land Management's claims that a 90,000 acre piece of land along Texas' Red River now belongs to the federal government.

Is that the boundary Abbott thinks the federal government is stepping over?

Three sentences into the email Greg Abbott is telling me that we can't let the federal government swoop into Texas and take land belonging to private citizens.

Did I already mention this guy is a nut job?

Greg Abbott is worrying about the federal government doing some Texas land swooping? Where is his concern regarding the taking of land belonging to private citizens by the antics of fellow Republican Kay Granger and the abuse of eminent domain by the Trinity River Vision Boondoggle?

I guess the federal government did, sort of, enable some Texas land swooping with the TRV Boondoggle, due to Kay Granger securing some pork barrel funding, prior to that practice being halted.

With Kay Granger's pork no longer flowing into Fort Worth hasn't the reason for the TRV Boondoggle hiring professional party planner, J.D. Granger, gone bye bye?

Maybe if J.D. Granger were replaced with a qualified project engineer the TRV Boondoggle might develop some sort of project timeline, with a completion date, while speeding up the current four year time frame to build three simple bridges over dry land.

I seem to have digressed from the Greg Abbott for Governor of Texas subject.

I don't understand why Texans would elect yet one more Republican to be their governor. Four years of George W. Bush, followed by 14 years of Rick Perry.

Did the Texans who used to elect people like Lyndon Baines Johnson, Sam Rayburn, Barbara Jordan, Anne Richards,  Lloyd Bentsen leave the state?

When Rome started going nuts it was later learned it was due to lead leaching into the water supply.

Texas has some serious water contamination issues, mostly due to oil and gas drilling. Is it something in the water which has dumbed down the formerly Great State of Texas?

Very perplexing.

Monday, October 27, 2014

This Afternoon I Learned What Obsesses My Subconscious

Usually I don't click on those Facebook link bait things where you answer a series of questions to find out stuff like which Beverly Hillbilly are you? Or what color are you? Or what famous person from the past are you? Or how many more years do you have before you kick the bucket?

Today I made an exception to my usual don't click rule when I saw Queen V had Facebooked a "What Is Your Subconscious Obsessed With? version of one of these ubiquitous things.

I thought some of the comments that Queen V got were amusing and so I took the test to find out what my subconscious is obsessed with to learn I  am obsessed with Nature. I was hoping it would be something more interesting than Nature.

Below are some of the Queen V Facebook comments on this serious issue. I found the final comment by Queen V to be particularly amusing.

Below is the final analysis I got from this scientific survey into my troubled subconscious...

Your subconscious is obsessed with nature! 

The pictures you have chosen paint the picture (get it?) that you are obsessed with nature. From a very early age you've felt a strong connection with animals and nature. You've always loved camping, traveling, hiking and just exploring the beautiful world that surrounds us. For you, nature is this beautiful, magical place where everything makes sense. There are simple rules and adventure is always waiting for you just around the river-bend. 

Your subconscious makes you think about traveling while doing grocery shopping, cooking, walking down the street and especially while working. And if you could, you would leave everything and go to travel around the world. 

Spooky. It is absolutely true that if I could I would leave everything and go to travel around the world.

I Am Not Feeling Stupid Today

I saw that which you see on the left this morning on Facebook, via Queen V.

When I read this the person who quickly came to mind, whose stupidity was difficult to deal with, is an ex-acquaintance of both myself and Queen V.

I have a relative, or two, who also come to mind. And maybe one or two others.

It really is true that when a person is stupid they are usually too stupid to know they are stupid. This renders the stupid person difficult to deal with because they have no clue how stupid they are.

Stupid people have a tendency to lose their tempers when their stupidity causes some difficulty, because the stupid person lacks the ability to accurately assess the situation their stupidity has created.

I am now done with my stupid rant for the day....

This Morning I Voted NO On Three Convoluted Fort Worth Propositions While Voting For Quanah Parker & Sam Houston

 I voted this morning and after I was done the nice poll working lady slapped the I Voted sticker on me you see here.

Every time I do the early voting I managed to forget how to work the dial that enters the numbers of the code you are given for your ballot.

One would think I would remember how to operate this voting video game, but I don't.

The nice poll working lady told me a lot of old folks have trouble with the voting video game.

I don't remember what race he was running in, but I voted for someone I did not think I would ever vote for.

Quanah Parker.

I also voted for Sam Houston, which is another Texan I never thought I would get to vote for.

And who could resist voting for someone with a cool name like Leticia Van de Putte?

The controversial Three Propositions related to the building of a new multipurpose arena in Fort Worth were odd, with the oddness being that the proposition contained verbiage I'd not seen in any of the propaganda that has been urging voters to vote for these propositions.

The actual wording on the ballot makes it sounds as if voting for these Three Propositions is an actual vote authoring the building of the arena.

I found a sample ballot, online, which for some odd reason had the words "Sample Ballot", graffitied across it.

I screencapped the ballot and cropped out the Proposition No. 2 part.

Proposition No. 2 in its entirety says...

"Authorizing the City of Fort Worth, Texas to provide for the planning, acquisition, establishment, development, construction and renovation of a multipurpose arena at the intersection of Harley Avenue and Gandy Street and other adjacent support facilities as a venue project, and to impose a livestock facility use tax on each stall or pen used or occupied by livestock during an event held on one or more consecutive days in which the venue project is used,not to exceed twenty dollars ($20.00) in the aggregate per stall or pen rental for any event, for the purpose of financing the venue project."

To me this sounds as if one votes NO one is voting to not authorize the City of Fort Worth to build this arena. Why has this not been made clear in any of the advertising about these Three Propositions?

Did the Forward Fort Worth Partnership PAC figure if they let voters know that voting no meant NO to the arena that the voters would have a greater tendency to vote NO? But that if the propaganda verbiage simplified it, that the voters would have a greater tendency to vote yes?

For Proposition #2 the Forward Fort Worth Partnership PAC's propaganda describes that proposition as simply "A user fee (tax) on livestock stalls and pens of $1 to $2 per day, not to exceed $20 per event."

How come on the actual ballot there is no mention of the $1 to $2 per day user fee? While the Forward Fort Worth Partnership PAC's propaganda makes voters think that is what they are voting for?

Very, very perplexing.

Does the concept of "voter fraud" extend to this type thing?

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Plutocrats Against Democracy Also Known As The Fort Worth Way

A time or two or three I have been asked why I say things like "you living in democratic parts of America" or "if Fort Worth was a functioning democracy", stuff like that.

This is a difficult question to answer, due to the fact that if the person asking has to ask, how are they going to understand my explanation?

To understand one has to understand the concept of a Plutocratic Oligarchy running a town, as opposed to democratic majority rule by the actual citizens of a town.

Someone named Anonymous made a comment on a blogging from a week or so ago, which addresses the Plutocratic Oligarchy issue...

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "An Anonymous Comment Regarding Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price's Empathy For The Plight Of The Poor": 

Plutocrats Against Democracy

Read Paul Krugman's Plutocrats Against Democracy opinion piece from the New York Times and see if anything strikes a Fort Worth chord.

You see, in an area subscribing to the democratic method of running a local government you would not have a local congresswoman's son appointed to a job for which he is not qualified. That is known as nepotism. Nepotism is frowned upon, usually, in a democracy.

In a plutocratic oligarchy public works projects are usually not voted on by the public. The oligarchy makes the decision, with little pubic input. The Trinity River Vision Boondoggle is an example of that. So is the current plan to build a multipurpose arena in the Fort Worth Stock Show zone.

The decision to build this arena was made behind doors closed to the public. However, the plutocrats are tossing the people a bone by allowing them to vote on whether or not to charge a $1 or $2 user fee livestock stalls in the new arena......

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Spencer Jack In Uniform Getting Schooled

A couple minutes ago incoming email included one from my Favorite Nephew Jason, aka FNJ.

The subject line in the email was blank. The only thing in the body of the email was a link to a website.

The link looked like a spam type thing to me, but I Googled the URL and quickly realized it was a legit link because it went to Spencer Jack's school's website.

I clicked the link and soon saw the photo you see above. That would be Spencer Jack, in uniform, on the left.

Spencer Jack's school's name is Immaculate Conception Regional School. It is a Catholic school.

I have not had it explained to me how or why it came to be that Spencer Jack is attending a Catholic private school.

Spencer Jack's dad and his dad's mom, that being Spencer Jack's grandma, have long been associated with the Burlington Lutheran Church. It was in that church that Spencer Jack's mom and dad got married, way back in April of 2006.

I remember that wedding day as if it were yesterday. But, it was over 8 years ago. It was a traumatic event for me. Not due to anything to do with the wedding, the trauma came from a relative annoyance of epic, peculiar proportions, whose addled behavior wore on my last nerve. In the intervening years I have seen that relative annoyance only once, not by choice, and for very short duration....

A Phoenix Hoodoo Has Risen On The Tandy Hills Along With A Completed New Trail

Is that not an odd looking new Hoodoo? It is sort of like a sculpture of a bird.

I was on the Tandy Hills this past Thursday prior to going to Town Talk. At that point in time the Hoodoo at Hoodoo Central was rubble on the ground.

Phoenix has risen from those Thursday ashes.

The new trail I saw getting blazed on Thursday is now completed. I arrived at the point where the new trail terminates at the north end of the View Street trail just as the trail blazers finished their blazing.

One of the trail blazers asked what I thought of the new trail. I told him I liked it. I then asked if they'd be continuing making more trails. One guy said no, they are done, while another guy said they may be back, that it depended on the timing.

I had no idea what he meant by the timing remark and I did not ask for elaboration.

What I do know is it would be a real good thing to have all the Tandy trails widened to the width of the new trail.

Today I sat for a spell on one of the wooden benches in the Tandy Hills Amphitheater and it occurred to me that it would be a real good thing to have similar benches installed throughout the Natural Area, like at the crest of hills.

Benches would give elderly geezers, such as myself, a place to plant ourselves whilst we recover from over aerobicizing.

Today I thought to myself the next time I visit the Tandy Hills I need to bring my chainsaw with me.

I'd not hiked the Tandy Highway since the BIG windstorm several Thursdays ago. I did so today and found myself having to navigate over several knocked down trees.

A knocked down tree has been blocking passage on the trail which leads from Tandy Falls to the View Street trail for over a year.

Since I was at Town Talk on Thursday, I decided I did not need a Saturday Town Talk Treasure Hunt. Saturday's at Town Talk can be a bit chaotic and hectic. Lately I have been enjoying peace and quiet and avoiding, as best as I can, anything chaotic or hectic.

Mayor Betsy Price In My Mailbox Again Telling Me It's Fort Worth It!

I found my favorite Fort Worth mayor, Betsy Price, in my mailbox, again, this morning, once again urging voters to vote for Props 1, 2 & 3 in the Fort Worth Multipurpose Arena Election, because "It's Fort Worth It!"

I have yet to hear any sort of explanation as to how having voters vote on these Three Propositions is necessary to bring about the building of an arena which private interests decided to build without public voter input of the sort where voters are asked to vote yes or no on something like the building of an arena, stadium, ballpark, bridge, school or other public works type deals built in the public's interest.

This morning's mailer is the third that has landed in my mailbox asking voters to vote for a user fee of $1 to $2 for livestock stalls.

You reading this in the democratic part of America, have you ever voted for something as goofy as user fees of $1 to $2 for livestock stalls? The livestock stall fee is the Proposition 2 part of the Three Propositions. You can real the almost as goofy details of Propositions 1 and 3 in the above scan of this latest political ad.

Speaking of this being a political ad, when I saw another mailer in my mailbox this morning it caused me to wonder who is paying for these mailings. A couple days ago I found myself wondering who paid for yard signs touting the Three Propositions.

I looked all over the mailer with a magnifying glass and eventually found some small print which said "Political Ad Paid For By Forward Fort Worth Partnership PAC, P.O. Box 28, Fort Worth, Texas 76102".

So, who funds this Forward Fort Worth Partnership PAC?

On the flip side of the mailer we are told "Private Donations Will Pay Half The Cost".

I suspect those private donators are also known as Forward Fort Worth Partnership PAC.

If I remember right this arena is projected to cost around $400 million. With the private donators who initiated this project on the hook for half that amount, how in the world was it determined that the other half of that amount could be covered by a user fee on livestock stalls, a user fee on event tickets and a user fee on parking?

Is this all going to turn into yet one more embarrassing Fort Worth boondoggle?

Friday, October 24, 2014

Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price's Studs With A Fort Worth Councilman Who Can't Keep His Pants On

This morning in the email inbox I found a blog comment from someone named Anonymous, pointing me to what Anonymous characterized as "bizarre pics".

The comment from Anonymous....

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Voting On User Fees Of $1 To $2 For Fort Worth Livestock Stalls Is Ridiculous": 

Here are some bizarre pics that you might be able to use or not.

The first is titled Mayor Price and her Studs. I recognize of the studs as a guy who cheated on his wife and then dumped her ages ago.

Here is Fort Worth city council member Dennis Shingleton wearing a US Navy enlisted uniform like it's a costume. He should know better since he was a Navy officer apparently. No respect I suppose.

Well, I can see why Anonymous characterized these pics as being bizarre. Amusing and bizarre. Below is the photo of the Fort Worth city council member.

It appears  these shenanigans took place at some sort of Sister Cities event. Prior to seeing these photos I knew that Fort Worth's mayor had secret service type security to protect her, but I did not know that Mayor Price also had a group of studs.

Are Sister Cities events known to be wild party type affairs where  politicians drop trou for the amusement of the party goers?

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Voting On User Fees Of $1 To $2 For Fort Worth Livestock Stalls Is Ridiculous

I saw this sign today at the location on View Street where I parked prior to doing some Tandy Hills hill hiking.

Has the Fort Worth Star-Telegram taken an editorial position on this serious issue of voting on Three Propositions related to the new Fort Worth Multipurpose Arena?

As in suggesting voters vote YES to these three ballot items. Three ballot items which are each basically the same thing, as in voting on user fees, such as whether or not to charge a $1 to $2 user fee on livestock stalls.

You reading this in parts of America that have real things to vote for on your ballots, trust me, I am not making this up. Voters are  being asked to vote on Three Propositions regarding fees related to livestock stalls, parking and event tickets.

And somehow, though I've never seen an explanation as to how, voting on these Three Propositions has something to do with the building of a new arena.

Now, who or what is paying for these large yard signs telling people to vote for Props 1, 2 & 3?

I think I've opined previously that I don't understand why Fort Worth voters are not feeling a bit offput at the absurdity of having these Three Propositions on a ballot. Why have Fort Worth's voters not been given the opportunity to vote yes or no on the building of this arena?

I have lived in democratic areas of America where voters get to vote on things like new stadiums, arenas, ballparks. What a concept.

Til now I have never lived in a pseudo-democratic area of America where voters are asked to vote yes or no on user fees for livestock stalls.

Am I alone in thinking having these Three Propositions on a ballot is, well, sort of embarrassing?

I think I will go early vote now. Any guesses as to how I'll be voting on the Three Propositions?

Hiking Brand New Trails On The Tandy Hills Before Treasure Hunting At Town Talk

This morning I read on Facebook that new trails were being blazed on the Tandy Hills.

I was on the Tandy Hills on Sunday and saw no sign of new trails being blazed.

Today I was back on the Tandy Hills, accessing the hills from View Street, not from my usual access point atop the summit of Mount Tandy.

Walking towards the hills I soon came upon three Fort Worth parks department trucks.

Trail blazers I wondered?

Shortly thereafter I came upon obvious new trail, heading west from the View Street trail. That is a serpentine section of the new trail you see in the picture.

Heading north on the new trail I eventually came upon the trail blazers. My first contact was with a trail blazing woman who had lost her gloves. She requested my help in finding them and then quickly proceeded to scold me for incorrectly holding my walking stick.

A short while after the walking stick lecture we found the missing gloves and the rest of the trail blazing crew.

I'd never seen a trail blazing machine until today. That would be what you see below.

The trail blazing machine is sort of like a mini-bulldozer.

Methinks this new trail blazing is a real good thing and will greatly improve the Tandy Hills hiking experience, replacing some of the eroded trails with trails designed not to erode.

After I had had myself sufficient hill hiking I was off to Town Talk for a rare Thursday bout of Treasure Hunting.

Today I got 10 pounds of Italian sausage, two cases of vanilla Siggi yogurt, three pounds of fresh okra, two pounds of ground turkey, extra sharp white cheddar cheese, chicken, smoked sausage, Fuji apples from Wenatchee, tortillas, chicken tamales and soy milk.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Why Is Gas Now Cheaper In Washington Than Texas?

About an hour ago I got myself some gas at Sam's Club. That gas was pumped at $2.75 per gallon of regular unleaded.

Usually when I get gas I call my mom, but today I was in a hurry and it was not a convenient call time. That and I'd just talked to my mom a couple days ago.

When I got back to my abode eventually I woke up my computer and saw email with a couple Facebook messages. Why does Facebook send me these type emails telling me someone has mentioned me on Facebook? I suppose I could find a way to make it stop if I wanted to spend the time doing so.

So, I went to Facebook and eventually saw that which you see here, Miss Chris Sampson bragging about filling her tank for $44 at a measly $2.49 a gallon for regular unleaded.

Miss Sampson lives in Washington, the Seattle suburb of Kent to be specific.

The last time I was in Washington gas was nearing 5 bucks a gallon. At that point in time gas in Texas was well under $4.

So, why is gas now cheaper in Washington than it is in Texas?

I suppose it has something to do with all those new oil wells being drilled in Washington, producing oodles of oil.

No, that's wrong. Not a drop of oil has ever come out of the ground in Washington. It is Texas that is currently pumping oodles of oil, creating an oil boom in West Texas and other Texas locales.

Oil from Alaska used to arrive for refining in Washington. I know new oil is incoming from North Dakota and the refineries in my old home zone of the Skagit Valley have amped up their producing ability, which is one of the reasons why the economy of the Skagit zone is booming.

I don't see how that incoming North Dakota oil would be making Washington gas cheaper than Texas gas. That sure was not the case when Alaskan oil was incoming.

The volatile gas price is perplexing....

Is Fort Worth Really An Anonymous Boom Town?

Yesterday, after I blogged about yesterday's Tarrant Regional Water District Board meeting, specifically mentioning what I thought to be rather dubious remarks by the Trinity River Vision Boondoggle's Executive Director, J.D. Granger, I got a blog comment from someone calling him or herself Anonymous, which really gave me pause to wonder.

Do I have that "pause to wonder" cliche correct?

Or should it be "pause to think?"

I really am not all that big a fan of pausing to think. Pausing to wonder? Yes, I do like to do that.

Anyway, the comment from Anonymous caused me to  wonder if, unbeknownst to me, Fort Worth is actually a Boom Town....

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "At Today's TRWD Board Meeting We Learn Fort Worth Is The Envy Of Other Cities": 

Look at Fort Worth's growth over the last 12 years. Now look at where NCTCOG projects DFW's greatest growth to occur over the next 10 years.....Fort Worth (west and northwest to be more exact). The City of Fort Worth continues to grow and it has indeed been the envy of other City's regarding the rate of growth and the quality of developments that are being built and that are being planned. There are over 10,000 acres of land being planned for development in Fort Worth. A breath of new life continues to be breathed into our Downtown and inner city areas (Sundance plaza, Near South, Linwood, West 7th, Six Points, etc) Further, we continue to diversify our economy and draw good paying jobs to the area. Alliance area is booming, the Chisholm Parkway has opened vast areas for growth (and good growth at that!)

Why are you so down on Fort Worth? Per capita, our permitting numbers are unparalleled. Only Houston beats our single family starts, but that is a pure numbers to numbers comparison. 

Despite the opinion of Anonymous, I am not down on Fort Worth. I am down on hyping that which is not hypeworthy. I do not think it well serves the locals to pretend that Fort Worth is a paragon of any sort, when it is not.

You want to talk to me about all this "good growth"? With some of that "good growth" being a lot of single family housing starts?

Well, you are not going to talk to me about that without talking to me about the Homeless People City on Lancaster. How many years has it been now since Fort Worth sent a task force to progressive cities out west to learn how they successfully managed their Homeless People Problem?

How about the fact that Fort Worth is so ill-served by something as simple as sidewalks? I cringe every time I see a mom struggling to push a stroller on a dirt path beside an un-sidewalked Fort Worth street.

You want to talk to me about Fort Worth Growth? How about growing up to being a city which has modern facilities, such as restrooms and running water, in your public parks? Amenities which long ago became the norm in more developed, modern parts of America.

Regarding this comment from Anonymous, if I am understanding correctly, Fort Worth is the envy of the civilized world due to its unparalleled permitting numbers? With only Houston having more single family housing starts? And due to the quality of its developments? And due to over 10,000 acres of land being developed? And due to having vast areas for growth?

Where to start?

Does the phrase "URBAN SPRAWL" mean anything to anyone associated with thinking opening vast areas for growth is a really really good thing? Without proper planning? Infrastructure development? And, God forbid we think about public transit.

Quality of development? Really? Quality? Sundance Square Plaza is remarkable only due to the fact that after decades of calling its downtown zone Sundance Square, downtown Fort Worth finally has a square, where parking lots existed, previous to the square.

Most big cities in America do not have parking lots at the core of their downtown because that real estate is too valuable to use to park cars.

Downtown Fort Worth may be the most lifeless big city downtown in America. It certainly is the only downtown of a large American city with not one department store. Not one grocery store. And which is a ghost town on the busiest shopping day of the year, that being the day after Thanksgiving.

Are there any other American towns of Fort Worth's size without a direct public transit connection to its airport?

West 7th? You want to bring that up as an example of being an envy generator? West 7th is remarkable only when one compares it to how bad it was before the Montgomery Plaza renovation sparked a boom in that zone. But, was that boom well designed, well planned?


The drive through the West 7th zone is through a congested canyon. No setbacks, no wide sidewalks, limited parking. And it ain't pretty when a flood comes to town.

The idea is boggling, to me, that anyone local takes pride in the fact that the urban blight which surrounds downtown Fort Worth is now, after how long, finally being dealt with, albeit, to my eyes, incompetently, as in put on your Big City Pants, Fort Worth, and vote to tax yourselves to fund the public works projects which this town so direly needs, but which are being dealt with like a poor beggar looking for handouts.

Ma Granger, please give us some pork, we needs us some pork. We can't feed ourselves, Ma Granger. If we give your boy, J.D., a job, will you get us some pork, Ma Granger?

The envy of other cities in America? No. The above sentence is more accurate as to how other towns in America view the Fort Worth Way of growing....

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

At Today's TRWD Board Meeting We Learn Fort Worth Is The Envy Of Other Cities

I returned to my phone and computer after a bike tour of my neighborhood to learn that a meeting of the Tarrant Regional Water District Board was under way.

From TRWD Board Director Mary Kelleher, on Facebook---

"Headed to TRWD Board meeting. Please pray for the Board to do what's right for the people!!"

To which one of Mary's many friends said---

"Mary, I don't think prayer is going to help. An election? Maybe."

Then another of Mary's friends said---

"Mary is hammering them this morning. What Jim Oliver hired his sister in law? Man Jim didn't want to answer that question. Little defensive. Go Mary Go!"

Nepotism associated with the TRWD? I am as shocked as that cop was in Casablanca when he learned gambling took place at Rick's.

And then via text messages on my phone I learned some of what J.D. Granger was telling the TRWD Board.

(That is J.D. Granger in the photo above, used for illustrative purposes, with the photo taken at another meeting attended by Mr. Granger)

The two text message tidbits of interest are that J.D. Granger told the TRWD Board that "140,000 people had attended 39 Trinity River Vision Boondoggle Events."

And that "We are the envy of other cities."

140,000 people attended 39 events? That is almost 6,000 people per event.  Anyone out there see that many people at any of the Boondoggle's events? Anyone see that many people ever floating at one of the Boondoggle's Rockin'  the River Happy Hour Inner Tube Floats?

Did anyone at the TRWD Board meeting ask Mr. Granger by what mechanism the Trinity River Vision Boondoggle's vision had evolved into hosting music events, beer parties, inner tube floats and other goofy stuff which seems to have little to do with controlling floods?

"We are the envy of other cities?"

I thought we had retired this embarrassing "envy of" verbiage being associated with anything to do with Fort Worth due to the absolute ludicrousness of saying such a thing.

You in other towns, Haltom City, Richland Hills, Keller, Arlington, Hurst, Bedford, is there anything about Fort Worth that you envy?

Okay, those are Fort Worth suburbs, or surrounding towns.

If towns which see Fort Worth up close can see nothing to envy, how about other towns?

Dallas? Envy anything about Fort Worth? Jealous of the Fort Worth version of the Trinity River Vision Boondoggle?

Oklahoma City? Envy anything about Fort Worth?

Houston? Envy Fort Worth? Austin? San Antonio?

Chicago? New York City? New Orleans? Miami? Los Angeles? Portland? San Francisco? Seattle? Denver? Boston? Philadelphia? Phoenix? Atlanta?

Or even Albuquerque?

Do any of you in big cities in other states envy anything about Fort Worth? Do any of you reading this in other states even know anything about Fort Worth? Other than the town is in Texas and near Dallas?

What is wrong with people in Fort Worth, like J.D.  Granger, that they say things like "Fort Worth is the envy of other cities"? This seems so bizarre  to me. Who is being fooled by this type propaganda? And what is the point of spewing this type nonsense?

It is all very perplexing. As is the nepotism which hired J.D. Granger.....

No City Wide Celebrating For Fort Worth's Guinness World Record Holding Cutting Edge Haunted House

A couple days ago I blogged on one of my other blogs about Halloween Hunting for Haunted Houses in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex.

During the course of blogging about the important Haunted Houses in D/FW subject I was surprised to learn that a Fort Worth Haunted House known as the Cutting Edge Haunted House has previously been acknowledged as a Guinness World Record Holder in the prestigious "World's Largest Walk Through Haunted House" category.

I did not know there was anything "Cutting Edge" in Fort Worth, let alone something that was "Cutting Edge" which was the largest in the world.

Up til this point it has been my experience that if there is any remote reason to brag about anything in Fort Worth one sees that bragging reflected in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Sometimes a city wide celebration is the result of the bogus, meaningless award that brings about the bragging.

The most recent bogus award came to my attention when Mr. & Mrs. Galtex Were In Argentina Where They Learned Fort Worth Has America's Top Downtown.

I blogged about that shocking revelation and then learned how this bizarre designation came to be via Elsie Hotpepper Helped Me Learn How Fort Worth Became The Top Downtown In America.

Short version, basically the downtown Fort Worth association sent an award submission full of hyperbolic, exaggerated nonsense to something called the International Downtown Association, which then gave Fort Worth one of their pseudo-prestigious Pinnacle Awards without investigating to see if it were true that Fort Worth's tiny little Sundance Square Plaza attracts thousands of visitors a week, along with other ludicrous claims.

I suspect the Cutting Edge Haunted House doing its haunting outside the Sundance Square zone of extremely exaggerated propaganda may be the reason I had never heard of it winning a Guinness World Record....

Monday, October 20, 2014

Did I Bring West Nile Virus Home With Me After Visiting The Oakland Lake Park Fosdick Lake Turtles?

I got a telepathic call from my Fosdick Lake turtle friends this morning indicating they were in the mood for me to visit them.

So, since I always, or usually, do what my reptile friends ask of me, around noon I drove to Oakland Lake Park to walk around Fosdick Lake so as to visit the Fosdick turtles.

The turtle photo only includes about a third of the number of turtles who were enjoying basking in the sun today.

The Fosdick turtles were not being very skittish, with most of them remaining out of the water, sitting on their logs, staring at me.

Why are the Fosdick turtles so un-skittish whilst the Village Creek Turtles are so high strung, I think I have asked a time or two before?

Soon after the turtle visit, whilst driving back to my abode, I realized I'd been bitten. I do not remember when last I had myself an insect bite in Texas. There are signs in Oakland Lake Park warning about West Nile Virus and mosquito bites.

The bug bite made its presence known due to it causing an itchy, burning sensation. I have now treated this insect attack with Bactine and Calamine Lotion. The itchy, burning sensation has now greatly abated.

I must Google now to find out what the symptoms of West Nile Virus are.......

Early Voting Begins On Three Absurd Arena Ballot Propositions In Fort Worth

In my mailbox this morning, just in time for the start of early voting, I got a new version of a previous mailing about the Fort Worth Multipurpose Arena Election.

The previous mailer featured Fort Worth Mayor, Betsy Price. This time the mailer features Fort Worth businessman, Ed Bass, who shares with us his opinion that "This unique public-private partnership is an opportunity that will benefit Fort Worth for generations to come."

I am unclear as to what the public part of this partnership is. I believe the decision to build this new multipurpose arena was made privately. I do not recollect a public vote on this issue.

I really don't understand the point of the Three Ballot Propositions the public is being asked to vote on.

Three Ballot Propositions, all of which involve approving fees related to the new arena.

Fees, such as a user fee on tickets, a user fee of a dollar or two on livestock stalls and a user fee not to exceed $5 per vehicle for parking.


These type fees need to be voted on and somehow relate to approving of this new arena?

How come Fort Worth voters are not offput at being thrown this bone of voting on something like these Three Ballot Propositions under the guise that they are participating in some sort of decision regarding the building of the new arena?

Are Fort Worth voters actually debating the merits of whether or not to approve of a user fee of $1 to $2 per day on livestock pens?

That is just embarrassing.

If this Fort Worth Multipurpose Arena Election were actually an election where, unlike the Trinity River Vision Boondoggle, the public was actually allowed to vote on this new arena public works project, voting yes or no on a bond issue funding mechanism, such as that which takes place in Big Towns which wear their Big City Pants, I would be voting YES, because I can see clearly that Fort Worth could use a modern arena to replace that Will Rogers antique arena.


I will be voting NO on these Three Ballot Propositions.

Because, I really do not think it will make any difference on the final arena result whether these three absurd propositions get approved, or not....

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Trinity River Vision Boondoggle Go Gateway Propaganda Spews Nonsense In Fort Worth's East Regional Library

Yesterday on my way to the Tandy Hills I stopped in at my neighborhood library, that being the East Regional Library in East Fort Worth, to drop off a book or two.

Whilst hunting for some new books I came upon the signage you see here, saying "Go Gateway" at the top.

I remember seeing a massive Chesapeake Energy propaganda installation in this library, years ago. I don't remember previously seeing a Trinity River Vision Boondoggle propaganda installation touting the clouded Vision's imaginary Gateway Park Master Plan.

Just like the Boondoggle's propaganda installation at Gateway Park the library propaganda installation has a list of amenities which were allegedly requested by the community.

I have asked previously how it was these community-requested amenities came to be requested.

That is the beauty of propaganda. You just get to make stuff up.

The main verbiage on this piece of Trinity River Vision Boondoggle propaganda appears to be the same, or very similar, to that which I previously copied off the Gateway Park propaganda installation. But, it is worth repeating, just for the amusing absurdest aspect of it....

An exciting component of the Trinity River Vision is Gateway Park in Fort Worth's east side. The 1,000-acre park will be filled with community requested recreational amenities, such as a public skate park, an outdoor amphitheater and 15 miles of additional trails. Major strides  will be made in restoring the park's natural ecosystem, including the planting of over 80,000 native oak and pecan trees. This massive effort will fuel development around the park and connect east and southeast neighborhoods to the Trinity River corridor.

Oh, the embarrassing hubris of it all.

None of these community-requested amenities has been built, which, I assume is a big disappointment to those in the community who allegedly requested these amenities.

The Fort Worth Mountain Bike Association has added many miles of mountain bike trails. But that has nothing to do with the Trinity River Vision Boondoggle.

I find it really hard to believe the community requested one of the amenities on the list.

White Water Elements?

Can't you just see someone in the community raising his or her had and requesting white water elements be added to the list of amenities?

What is the point of putting this propaganda in the library? To create the illusion that something is happening when nothing is happening?

Why is there absolutely no mention made of any sort of construction timeline of this imaginary Gateway Park Master Plan? When is the plan scheduled to get under way? When is the plan scheduled to be completed?

When are those 80,000 trees, also known as J.D. Granger's Magic Trees, going to be planted?

I really think this propaganda needs to be removed from the library, before it disillusions oodles of children when they don't see the promised requested amenities come to fruition in their lifetimes.

I mean really, think of the children, the little kid asking mommy when he or she can go float on those white water elements he or she requested.....

Saturday, October 18, 2014

A Mexican Hat Hoodoo Has Sprouted On The Tandy Hills Along With Yellow Daisies

Today I was back on the Tandy Hills for the first time in weeks. I don't think I've done any hill hiking on the Tandy Hills in October.

I expected to see a lot of wind damage on the Tandy Hills today, what with how badly damaged nearby Oakland Lake Park and how many piles of fallen tree debris still lined the side of the road which leads to the summit of Mount Tandy.

However, I saw only a few downed trees on the Tandy Hills today. The microburst of high speed wind must have started super speeding when it got past the hills on that windy Thursday, several Thursdays ago.

What with all the wind of late I did not expect to see the tallest, most precarious Tandy Hills Hoodoo I've seen to date.

Let alone two tall Hoodoos.

The Hoodoo you see above I think may be an homage to the Mexican Hat rock formation near Mexican Hat, Utah. Mexican Hat is so-named because it looks like a sombrero. I don't know why that Utah rock formation was not named Mexican Sombrero. The top of the above Hoodoo looks like a sombrero, to me.

The Mexican Hat Hoodoo was at Hoodoo Central, at the north end of the trail which leads on to the Tandy Hills from View Street. The below Hoodoo is located part way up the trail which leads to the summit of Mount Tandy.

The above Hoodoo is built on a very solid base and appears to be less precarious than the Mexican Hat Hoodoo.

This hills were not alive with the sound of music today, but they were alive with a surprising amount of color, such as the yellow beauty you see below.

I don't know if these yellow beauties are daisies or sunflowers. I do know that there are multiple patches of these yellow flowers coloring up the Tandy Hills.

I had some time constraints constraining me today, so I did not make my regular Saturday visit to Town Talk. I will likely make up for that this coming Wednesday.

An Anonymous Comment Regarding Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price's Empathy For The Plight Of The Poor

No that is not Fort Worth mayor, Betsy Price, attired in Roman garb, addressing the Fort Worth Senate, I mean, city council.

This morning in my incoming email there was a blog comment from that ubiquitous commenter named Anonymous. Well, actually there was no comment from Anonymous, as in no words, just a link to a YouTube video.

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price Has No Comment About 30 Day Evictions of 100s In Her Town": 

That is a screencap from the Anonymous YouTube video above. Basically the video is a Roman metaphor for the heartless City of Fort Worth city government in regards to the plight of poor people being evicted from their homes with only 30 days to get out.

In the video we see the Fort Worth city councilman, above, address the Fort Worth city council. This particular Fort Worth city councilman pleads with the council on behalf of the poor and their housing needs.

The Fort Worth city council, with the mayor leading them, then collectively give their reply to the plea to help the poor, which you can hear for yourself below.....

Friday, October 17, 2014

Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price Has No Comment About 30 Day Evictions Of 100s In Her Town

Earlier today I blogged about the shocking evictions of 100s of Fort Worth residents who were given only 30 days to vacate the premises they called home.

Soon after hitting the publish button on that blogging there was an incoming comment from someone named Anonymous...

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Fort Worth Shrugs Its Shoulders While Hundreds Of Citizens Are Given 30 Day Eviction Notices": 

Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price has no comment: 

I clicked the link included in the comment from Anonymous to find, just like Anonymous indicated, no comment from Betsy Price, just the above photo.

I am not 100% certain, but I think that is Betsy Price's predecessor, former Fort Worth Mayor Mike Moncrief, standing next to Fort Worth's current mayor.

Fort Worth Shrugs Its Shoulders While Hundreds Of Citizens Are Given 30 Day Eviction Notices

I learned of the plight of Susan Bethke sometime last month. What I learned disgusted and appalled me, but I did not feel like I could blog about it.

Til now.

This week's Fort Worth Weekly tells much of what disgusted and appalled me, in their article titled Get Out.

Short version. The Parkview Village residents of 133 Fort Worth duplex apartment units, plus three homes, including Susan Bethke's, got eviction notices giving those evicted 30 days to vacate the premises.

I know, you in democratic, fair-minded, Christian parts of America are sitting there wondering how can such a thing happen, wondering maybe this is yet one more case of Texas eminent domain abuse.

Well, it is worse than eminent domain abuse.

It is unscrupulous, amoral, sleazy, inhuman real estate developer abuse by a chronically abusing Dallas based real estate investment group calling itself Cienda Partners.

The location of the evictions is known as the Scenic Bluff area, northeast  of downtown Fort Worth.

The developer wants to turn this property into townhouses and restaurants. The City of Fort Worth's developer friendly, citizen protection un-friendly government has turned a deaf ear to the pleas of the evictees for help.

Why the rush to evict I am sure you are wondering? Why not give these people a decent time frame in which to move? Help with expenses and finding a place to re-locate? When the same Cienda Snidely Whiplashers tried the same tactic in Dallas a citizen protest erupted that eventually had Snidely Whiplash giving those evictees six months to move, plus two thousand dollars.

Unlike people in Dallas, people in Fort Worth are not big on protesting, or fighting against a wrong, or fighting for justice, or fighting against the good ol' boy and girl network that runs Fort Worth in what is known locally as the Fort Worth Way.

As in business UBER ALLES, the people be damned.

The Fort Worth Weekly article does not make too much of a point of the fact that this sorry episode is yet one more wondrous thing brought about by the Trinity River Vision Boondoggle.

The Scenic Bluff area borders the area of the Boondoggle. The Cienda real estate sharks are clearly betting that this property is going to experience a big jump in value.

However, Cienda must not have investigated too deeply into the Boondoggle's Vision or they would have learned that the massive public works project, which the public has never voted for, is stalled.

The Boondoggle is currently stuck taking four years to build three simple bridges. Bridges being built over where the Boondoggle thinks it is going to build an un-needed flood diversion channel.

So, you are looking at a four year minimum before that channel construction can begin. How many years after that before the Boondoggle's Vision becomes anything anyone wants to see? A decade? Two decades?

Meanwhile these Cienda townhouses will be looking out at a vast construction area, maybe, if the Boondoggle ever comes up with the money to bring their Boondoggly Vision to fruition.

So, while the Scenic Bluff evictees move on with their lives, they may have the last laugh, when Cienda realizes they've made a big boo boo....

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Does Sarah Palin Think A Travel Ban Is Needed For Ebola, Dallas & Lubbock?

From my main online news source, on Facebook, Fort Worth Star-Telegram food critic and columnist, Bud Kennedy, I learned that Lubbock has possibly joined Dallas in the Texas Ebola Outbreak.

Apparently, judging by the photo, a large police and emergency team crew sealed off a Lubbock neighborhood where someone returned from Africa's Ivory Coast with flu symptoms.

The amount of info in Mr. Kennedy's Facebook news about the Lubbock Ebola Outbreak was limited.

And I did not click the link to learn more.

One can not help but wonder when this Africa traveler's flu symptoms showed up. After he or she was home? Before boarding the plane in Africa? Whilst in mid-flight?

The Ebola Crisis sure seems to be wearing on people's nerves. Both those freaked out about it and those tired of hearing about it.

I have been unable to determine if it was an Internet hoax or not if Sarah Palin actually said something like "My prayers go out to the people of Ebola."

I suspect Mrs. Palin likely did say something like this. Isn't she the one who had to have it explained to her that Africa was not a country? Or was that Joe Biden?

America has a lot of inadvertent comical politicians. It's hard to keep up....

Columbus & His Crew Of Undocumented Immigrants Refused To Learn The Local Language

Continuing on with our week of celebrating Indigenous People, which began on Monday with Indigenous People's Day, I thought that which you see here to be amusing.

Sadly, there are those who wouldn't understand the amusement.

On Indigenous People's Day it became clear to me that there were some  people who had no clue as to why enlightened, educated sorts might think it really is not a good idea to be having a federal holiday honoring Christopher Columbus.

I think those who think it blasphemy to tamper with a holiday honoring Columbus are people who learned a myth in grade school and never unlearned that myth upon higher education, such as that which one gains when one goes to college.

But, one does not need higher education to learn factual non-mythical history. One can go to a library and check out a book. Or just Google "Christopher Columbus" and read something like the Wikipedia Christopher Columbus article to find yourself a bit of enlightenment via real history, such as the four paragraphs below...

According to the report, Columbus once punished a man found guilty of stealing corn by having his ears and nose cut off and then selling him into slavery. Testimony recorded in the report claims that Columbus congratulated his brother Bartolomé on "defending the family" when the latter ordered a woman paraded naked through the streets and then had her tongue cut out for suggesting that Columbus was of lowly birth.

The document also describes how Columbus put down native unrest and revolt; he first ordered a brutal crackdown in which many natives were killed and then paraded their dismembered bodies through the streets in an attempt to discourage further rebellion.

"Columbus's government was characterised by a form of tyranny," Consuelo Varela, a Spanish historian who has seen the document, told journalists. "Even those who loved him [Columbus] had to admit the atrocities that had taken place."

De las Casas records that when he first came to Hispaniola in 1508, "there were 60,000 people living on this island, including the Indians; so that from 1494 to 1508, over three million people had perished from war, slavery, and the mines. Who in future generations will believe this? I myself writing it as a knowledgeable eyewitness can hardly believe it..."

In our current times the only thing that comes close to the Columbus style of subjugating conquered people is ISIS in Iraq and Syria.

You think in 500 years they will be celebrating ISIS Day in Iraq?

Sadly, that may come to be. Just like Columbus Day.....