Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Spencer Jack Is On A Hoodsport Quest To Find His Former Aunts

Yesterday Spencer Jack and his dad emailed me from Ocean Shores, that being a Washington tourist zone on the Pacific coast, where Spencer Jack had his first video documented driving lesson on the Ocean Shores beach.

Years ago in my antique 1965 Fastback Mustang I got stuck driving on that beach whilst trying to cross a creek. It was after dark. I probably should not have been beach driving.

I digress.

Back to the present moment.

A few minutes ago fresh incoming from Spencer Jack and his dad. They have now left the coast and are on the west side of Hood Canal.

The message accompanying four pictures....


Nephew Spencer Jack in Hoodsport trying to locate his aging former aunts who unfriended him. We looked for them at the tavern, the liquor store and the library. Locals who know the pair well said we just missed them at two of the mentioned places.


For reasons fathomable to no one,  two of Spencer Jack's aunts unfriended him and his dad on Facebook. Now, that pair long ago unfriended me for reasons also unfathomable. Suffice to say Spencer Jack's former aunts have what are known as issues.

So, that first picture at the top has Spencer Jack at the entry to Hoodsport, looking for his former aunts. Currently those aunts are living in a cabin a few miles to the west, at the eastern edge of Olympic National Park, at Lake Cushman.

Apparently the next stop on Spencer Jack and his dad's quest took them to the Hoodsport Library. I think the boys must have known this would be a very unlikely location to find the former aunts.

Then it was on to Hoodsport's liquor store. The last time I was at Hoodsport Washington still had state run liquor stores. Now it appears someone named Laurie runs the town's liquor store. Or one of them. I have not been back to Washington since whiskey is sold in grocery stores, with the state out of the liquor selling business.

The last time I heard Spencer Jack's former aunts refer to the Hoodsport Liquor Store they called it the Candy Store. I was told we were making a run to the Hoodsport Candy Store. I wondered why til we reached Hoodsport and I learned what type candy they were seeking.

I assume the above is the referenced tavern, with it being one of the two locations, along with Laurie's Liquor Store, where the former aunts had recently been spotted.

Now I am wondering if Spencer Jack and his dad continued their quest to find their former aunts, by heading west up the steep hill that leads to Lake Cushman. It's about 8 miles, if I remember right, from the Hoodsport turn west off Highway 101, to the Cushman Cabin.

If Spencer Jack and his dad venture into Cushman Cabin territory I hope they have their cameras ready to snap the expressions of joy and surprise on their former aunt's wrinkled faces....

The Janitor Has Me Looking At J.D. Granger & Matt Oliver In Goofy Glasses With Their Girlfriend

An amusing blog comment from The Janitor on yesterday's blogging about America's Biggest Boondoggle's claim there are no gators swimming with the tubers while Rockin' the River.

The Janitor has left a new comment on your post "Panther Island Pavilion Propaganda Claims No Gators Rockin' The River With The Tubers": 

Speak of the devil:

Messrs. Matt Oliver & JD Granger in their goofy gravitas eyeglasses.

The Janitor did not mention the lady on the left. According to the caption, standing next to Matt Oliver, that is Shanna Cate.

I am not 100% certain, but I think Shanna Cate is the Trinity River Uptown Central City Panther Island Vision Boondoggle's Human Resource Director.

You know the person an employee reports to if any shady shenanigans are going on between management and an employee, creating a hostile work environment, like if someone felt a co-worker  was getting preferential treatment due to being involved, flagrante delicto, with a member of management. That type thing.

Anyway, I think Messrs. Oliver and Granger look very business-like in their goofy gravitas eyeglasses.

I wonder why Ms. Cates is not looking business-like in goofy gravitas eyeglasses?

Are We Having A Showdown At The Fort Worth Stockyards Cattle Pen?

Big Ed emailed me asking why I'd not opined about this.

With the this to which Big Ed referred being the info contained in the article you see part of here, screen capped, titled Showdown: History and the future face off in Fort Worth Stockyards.

Recently something called the National Trust for Historic Preservation put out its annual list of what they considered to be America's Most Endangered Historic Places, with the Fort Worth Stockyards on this year's list.

The National Trust for Historic Preservation apparently thinks a $175 million project planned by Fort Worth's Hickman family, partnered with a California developer called Majestic Realty, is an "insensitive development" which threatens the historically significant Fort Worth Stockyards.

I don't know where in the Stockyards this proposed development is to take place, but one paragraph in the article tilted me to being against this development....

“It certainly ought to be a wake-up call to [Majestic owner Ed] Roski and the mayor that trading those cattle pens for modern-day restaurants and retail is foolish,” Murrin said. “Our national and international reputation is what tourism in the Stockyards is based on. It’s not just preservation for preservation’s sake. It’s good business.”

This project wants to take down the part of the Stockyards which is a stockyard? That being the cattle pens and the walkway that takes you above the cattle pens? That walkway is what the cowboy is standing on in the above photo.

And the cattle pens are where the Fort Worth Herd lives when the Longhorns are not in Trail Drive mode.

I was hoping this proposed development was an improvement, not something destructive, because the Fort Worth Stockyards could use some work.

Much has improved since I first visited the Stockyard, but many boarded up eyesores remain, such as the New Isis Theater.

Why does the city not do something about the New Isis eyesore is a question I have been asking since late in the last century.

The sidewalks in the Stockyards could use some work.

After dark the lighting in the Stockyards is terrible.

It has long seemed to me that Fort Worth sort of turns its back on its one and only actual tourist attraction that people in other parts of the planet actually know about. Visit the Stockyards on any summer Saturday and you will run into a European or two or three. Often Germans.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Spencer Jack's Driver's Training On the Beach In Ocean Shores Washington

A few hours ago an incoming email from Spencer Jack's dad had a picture of what looked like Spencer and his dad about to board a British Airways plane, with the text in the email telling me "Spencer Jack boards the Concorde en route to visit his Uncle."

The Concorde?

The Concorde has long gone to the same resting place as America's Space Shuttle.

En route to visit his uncle? As far as I know Spencer Jack has only two uncles. Those being me and my Favorite Nephew Joey. This is not a good time to be visiting Spencer Jack's Texas uncle, so I assumed the uncle being visited was Joey.

That Joey was the object of the visit was confirmed in follow up emails, one of which had a video attached, with the message in the email being "Killing time waiting to meet Uncle Joe."

That attached video you can watch below, where you will see Spencer Jack having his first driving lesson, on the sands of Ocean Shores. In the picture below, before you get to the video, Spencer Jack is waving at you, with waves of the Pacific Ocean coming to shore behind him.

I do not know if the Texas Gulf Coast has any beaches which are also highways. Washington has Ocean Shores with miles of beach road. If I am remembering right, Long Beach, south of Ocean Shores, also has beach driving.

My last time driving on the beach at Ocean Shores was in the summer of 2001. The driving was done on a real fun tricycle mountain bike type conveyance.

And now, the video of Spencer Jack taking his dad on a drive beside the Pacific Ocean...

Panther Island Pavilion Propaganda Claims No Gators Rockin' The River With The Tubers

A few minutes ago Elsie Hotpepper emailed me what you see here.

What you are looking at is a screen cap from America's Biggest Boondoggle's Panther Island Pavilion Facebook page.

Seems like just a couple days ago I blogged a blogging titled An Alligator Is Rockin' The River At Fort Worth's Imaginary Island Pavilion.

Two paragraphs from that blogging...

The TRWD spokesman is Matt Oliver, hired after an extensive search for a qualified experienced spokesman discovered that the son of the TRWD's manager, Jim Oliver, was best suited to adhere to the TRWD's policy of employing corrupt nepotism whenever possible.

Anyway, wildlife expert, Matt Oliver, informs us that there is nothing to fear from an alligator enjoying Rockin' the River near the imaginary island and pavilion. That alligators are just like turtles, what with being shy and minding their business unless intruded upon by hundreds of foolish people floating in inner tubes.

So, we have the spokesman for the parent of America's Biggest Boondoggle reassuring people there is no danger from the gator that took up residence in the Panther Island Pavilion zone, where there is no island or pavilion.

Meanwhile, America's Biggest Boondoggle's Panther Island Pavilion Facebook page is telling people there are no gators in the federal flood way were the tubing  takes place.

Federal flood way? This is the first time I've heard the confluence of those two forks of the Trinity identified as a federal flood way.

The Trinity River Central City Uptown Panther Island Vision Boondoggle has always been big on exaggerated propaganda.

Touting things like three simple little bridges being built in slow motion for four years are going to be signature bridges. You know, like the Golden Gate Bridge is.

Or propaganda like touting that Panther Island Pavilion, where I think I have already mentioned there is no island or pavilion, is the only urban waterfront music venue in Texas and other exaggerations regarding that rather sad, aesthetically speaking, music venue, with old subway stations turned into stages, a service garage turned into a beer hall/music stage, and for restrooms, a couple concrete enclosed outhouses.

Yeah, that is one world class music venue. Now with gators.....

UPDATE: I have been erroneous in saying TRWD spokesman, Matt Oliver, is TRWD mis-manager, Jim Oliver's son. Jim Oliver is Matt's uncle. I learned this from TRWD board director Mary Kelleher's blog in a blogging titled Croc In River....

Jumpin Rudy Wants You To Check Out The VIP Bathroom Amenities At Fort Worth's Fourth

Incoming email this morning from the entity who goes by the name of Jumpin Rudy.

Text in email: In Sunday's paper. Sorry for the potato quality pic. Check out the VIP amenities: VIP BATHROOMS!

I am not sure I know what a potato quality pic is, but I cropped the pic Jumpin Rudy included in the email and ran it through a photo filter to render it less potato-ish.

I blogged about those VIP bathrooms a week or two ago in a blogging titled Fort Worth's Fourth Has Five VIP Levels With Some Having Private Bathrooms & Cash Bars.

Now, here is what I am thinking.

With my perspective tainted by being from way up north and the west coast, where modern restroom facilities are the norm, not the exception, it strikes me as really embarrassing that a city would have an event where it is advertised as a VIP extra that you get access to a bathroom.

The advertisement in the Star-Telegram made it clear this embarrassment is yet one more product of America's Biggest Boondoggle. I ran the proud "PRODUCED BY TRINITY RIVER VISION AUTHORITY" part of the ad through the potato filter, with below being the barely legible result.

Does it only seem odd to me that America's Biggest Boondoggle goes by so many different names? Trinity River Vision Authority. Trinity Uptown. Central City. Panther Island. Why not just settle on calling it America's Biggest Boondoggle, which is an accurate name?

Sunday, June 28, 2015

No Indian Ghosts Haunting Arlington's Village Creek On This Last Sunday Of June

My handlebars went to Arlington this last Sunday of June to the Village Creek Natural Historical Area.

What the handlebars are looking at is the scourged ground left behind when Village Creek ceased being in flood mode.

Village Creek was flowing with crystal clear water today, the likes of which I have not seen before with Village Creek.

If the Trinity River ever got as crystal clear as Village Creek is being today, well, inner tubing in that river would not seem nearly as unappealing, what with one then being able to see what was sharing the water with you.

The above view is looking northwest, from the Bob Findlay Linear Park that runs  through the Interlochen neighborhood.

The below view is also looking northwest from the Interlochen neighborhood, but not on the Bob Findlay Linear Park.

As I approached the area you see above I saw those two bikers struggling to lower their bikes to a dam I have walked across many times, but would never consider using as a bike crossing, due to what  is on the other side is not exactly bike friendly. The pair making this trek, a man and woman, were not youngsters, much closer to being elderly than youngsters.

The path the bikers were on eventually leads to the Village Creek Blue Bayou Overlook. I did not see them when I got to the overlook. They had plenty of time to beat me there, what with the route they were taking being much shorter than the paved route which brought me to the Overlook.

A teenage kayaker drowned in Village Creek when he tried to kayak the flooding rapids. Seeing the scourged remains of the flood today had me wondering where that kayaker kayaked, as in where did he put the kayak in, and where did it turn into a fatal accident?

Way too many locals seem to think it is a good idea to go kayaking in a flooding creek or river. Do there need to be "NO KAYAKING WHILE FLOODING" signs sharing space with the "FISH NOT SAFE TO EAT" signs?

I saw no Indian Ghosts today....

Saturday, June 27, 2015

The Supreme Court Has Brought About An Unexpected Texas Wedding Boom

A week ago if I saw that which you see here in the Seattle Times I would have screen capped it and added it to my list of bloggings about things I see in west coast newspapers that I would never see in a Texas newspaper.

But, starting yesterday, items like you see here, from the Dallas Morning News, are showing up in newspapers all over Texas.

Yesterday morning, June 26, 2015, 82 year old George Harris and 85 year old Jack Evans became the first same sex pair to get themselves legally hitched in Dallas County.

Meanwhile, yesterday a Fort Worth policewoman became the first to get married to her now former girlfriend in Tarrant County.

On Friday same sex couples were showing  up in large numbers at county courthouses across Texas. It is sort of amazing how a ruling by SCOTUS could have such an immediate impact.

What's next on this common sense train America seems to be on? Universal decriminalization of marijuana? Amnesty for those in prison for some marijuana crime? Actual Universal Health Care like other advanced nations have?

And what's next for Texas?

Does Texas have any sort of recall the governor type deal to be used when the people realize they have elected a clueless moron?

An Alligator Is Rockin' The River At Fort Worth's Imaginary Island Pavilion

This morning Elsie Hotpepper in her ongoing campaign to convince me to cease with participating in America's Biggest Boondoggle's Rockin' the River Happy Hour Inner Tube Floats in the polluted Trinity River emailed me a link to a NBCDFW news story titled Alligator Spotted Near Downtown Fort Worth.

The spot where the alligator was spotted is the same spot where The Boondoggle's Rockin' the River takes place.

I have long wondered how long  it was going to be til something unwanted floated into the location where the River Rockin' takes place. Something like a water moccasin or a herd of snapping turtles or a big garfish or an alligator.

In addition to the information about the alligator what I also got out of this story was a feeling of how bizarre it is that the local idiocracy has gone along with The Boondoggle's Panther Island Pavilion nomenclature, what with the fact of the matter being there is no island or pavilion.

The talking heads used the Panther Island Pavilion misnomer and it was printed on the screen showing a flooded Trinity River lapping up against the stage which I think is what The Boondoggle is pretending is a pavilion.

In this location there is also a pretend beach with transplanted sand, likely in need of being re-transplanted when the river recedes.

Also included in this story was alligator information from the spokesman for the Tarrant Regional Water District.

The TRWD spokesman is Matt Oliver, hired after an extensive search for a qualified experienced spokesman discovered that the son of the TRWD's manager, Jim Oliver, was best suited to adhere to the TRWD's policy of employing corrupt nepotism whenever possible.

Anyway, wildlife expert, Matt Oliver, informs us that there is nothing to fear from an alligator enjoying Rockin' the River near the imaginary island and pavilion. That alligators are just like turtles, what with being shy and minding their business unless intruded upon by hundreds of foolish people floating in inner tubes.

I think I will likely stay out of the Trinity River for awhile....

Friday, June 26, 2015

A Happy Hour Rockin' The Indian Ghosts Bike Ride In Arlington's Interlochen

Can you see the Indian Ghosts sitting on the supposedly empty bench, looking out over the land on which their village was built a long long time ago?

What with there being Indian Ghosts sitting on a bench this would seem to indicate my handlebars are in the vicinity of Arlington's Village Creek Natural Historical Area.

Specifically my handlebars are looking northwest from a sidewalk in the Interlochen neighborhood, looking at an Interlochen loch and Village Creek.

In the past week, or so, my attempts to visit the Indian Ghosts have been thwarted by the area being closed due to flooding.

Via muddy residue, well, what once was mud, but which has now been rendered into thick dust, I could see how high the water rose.

I don't know if Village Creek rose to a record breaking flood level, but if it didn't, I think it got close. A lot of flood damage residue has been left in the flood's wake.

More rain is on the menu for tomorrow, with possible thunderstorms. I hope we don't go into flood mode again.

It gets old.

That and all this flooding is causing my favorite local activity to be postponed over and over again. I am referring to the Rockin' the River Happy Hour Inner Tube Floats in the currently bloated and polluted Trinity River, which America's Biggest Boondoggle is now touting as being the same water as our drinking water, with that lovely muddy brown color coming from clay.

Not pollution....

You Got A "C" On The History Of The Civil War Test

Of late, whilst reading comments about various current events issues, such as the ongoing Confederate flag controversy, I have found myself appalled more than once by how ignorant way too many people are about what are known as historical facts, along with being appalled at how readily these ignorant sorts share their ignorance.

It occurred to me that it is likely the majority of those making ignorant comments had their education career end at high school.

Or earlier.

And that the majority of those making ignorant comments were likely C Students.

Or worse.

So, I was thinking, you C Students out there, you know who you are, well, you really might want to think twice before sharing your opinion about anything to do with politics, science, economics, history and other subjects where your knowledge base is a bit undeveloped.

Consider maybe keeping your C Student commenting to subjects like sports and Kardashians and other subjects that don't require being well educated.

Thank you in advance for your thoughtful consideration of this suggestion....

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Don't Drink And Facebook Unless You Are Living By The Golden Rule

I won't get specific about to whom this message is directed.

You know who you are and why you are reading this message.

What you need to do now that you are no longer under the influence is take the chilling out advice you were kindly given and then try hard to develop some compassion for your fellow humans and the myriad reasons they may not be living in a way your narrow mind approves of.

Or understands.

A wise man once allegedly said something along the line of "Judge not lest ye be judged." That same wise man also allegedly said something like "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you."

If I remember right that second piece of advice from the wise man is known as The Golden Rule. I may be wrong about that. Just a second while I visit Google. Yup, I was right....
The version I used sounds more poetic than this bloodless definition I got by Googling. But I should not judge....

Relative Annoyances Sent Me Seeking Endorphins On My Bald Tires

I've been experiencing some relative annoyance of late. This morning brought a fresh round.

Before this morning's fresh round of relative annoyance I had medicated myself, in anticipation of a fresh round of relative annoyance by aerobicizing in the pool with sufficient enthusiasm to generate a good dose of endorphins.

Well before noon the salubrious endorphin effect had begun to wear off, so I decided to roll my handlebars to my neighborhood golf course, Woodhaven Country Club, to get myself a new dose of endorphins.

So far, this afternoon, no fresh relative annoyance to ruin my good mood.

A new annoyance has cropped up, however.

I need to get myself some new bike tires. I have worn the current ones pretty much bald.

Fixing bald tires should be a lot easier than fixing relative annoyances...

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Spencer Jack Visits His Greatest Family Member For The First Time

Yester evening I got a few incoming emails from Spencer Jack's dad, FNJ (Favorite Nephew Jason).

One of the emails had a picture of Spencer Jack at Birch Bay. I blogged about that and Birch Bay on one of my other blogs in a blogging titled Spencer Jack Takes Me Back To Washington To Birch Bay.

There is nothing in Texas remotely like Washington's Birch Bay. How can I say that? Well, from Birch Bay you can clearly see a volcano. And mountains in Canada.

The first email of yester evening, prior to the two with pictures said, in part....


Spencer and I are currently en route to visit his greatest family member.

We will send you photo documentation upon arrival this late afternoon.


Greatest family member? I had no idea what that meant. Were Spencer and Jason arriving in D/FW in the late afternoon? Well, it was already well past late afternoon at my location, so I figured we were talking about a late Washington afternoon.

About three hours after the email about visiting Spencer's greatest family member I got an email with the picture you see above, with the subject line of the email saying "Spencer Jack meets his great great grandmother."

I had not seen this before. The gravestone for my Grandma Vera. Grandma Vera is my mom's mom.

Vera Sundean Porter 
December 26, 1910 - September 23, 2003

To be totally accurate the gravestone should say Vera Sundean Wilder Porter Huntley.

LaVerne Wilder was Grandma's first husband, and the father of my mother Shirley. Yes, that's right, LaVerne and Shirley. Grandma's second husband, Dr. Jim Porter, is who I always thought of as my Grandpa. It was at Grandma and Grandpa's 25th wedding anniversary party, attended by my actual Grandpa, that led me to learn I had another Grandpa.

That night I asked my brother how can mom be 31 when Grandma and Grandpa have only been married 25 years. Young and naive little boys were we. My brother and I decided the next morning I would ask at breakfast. It was then we learned about our other Grandpa, who we never actually knew.

It's a complicated story.

This was the morning we learned why mom's maiden name was Wilder, not Porter. And that Aunt Mike and Uncle Jim were mom's half-sister and half-brother. And that Uncle Willard was mom's full brother, or whatever one calls a sibling ones shares a mom and dad with.

When I saw Grandma Vera's gravestone I thought how can it be that long ago that Grandma died? 2003? I remember like it was yesterday, I was walking with the Village Creek Indian Ghosts, talking to my Arizona sister. We knew Grandma was not doing well. I asked my sister if she would be flying north for the funeral when that eventuality came to pass. As we had this conversation we did not know that Grandma had died that morning.

There was no funeral. Grandma Vera did not like them and did not want one.

It would please Grandma Vera immensely to know her Great Great Grandson, Spencer Jack had come to visit her. It would also please Grandma Vera to know how much we still all think of her. Looking around the room I am in right now I can see several things that remind me of Grandma Vera. Including two afghans, a knit cap and a pillow case.

It would not please Grandma Vera to know that only a few short years after her passing Uncle Jim, Aunt Mike and Uncle Willard would be joining her in the Great Beyond. Grandma Vera would have been most shocked at the passing of Aunt Mike. We all were. Alzheimer's.

It has been years since I've been to the Custer Cemetery where so many of my relatives now live. I don't remember how to get there. Let alone find gravesites once I am there. My last time being there was for the burial of Grandma Vera's little brother, Uncle Pete. The first time was for the burial of Grandpa Porter. That was one big funeral. I remember an overflowing church, somewhere in the Custer zone.

I wish we'd thought to take video of Grandma Vera. But she likely would have objected. Grandma Vera was a character. Funny. What little personality I have likely came in large part from Grandma Vera....

A Doctor Visit Had Me Rolling My Wheels In River Legacy Park Along A Still Flooding Trinity River

A doctor appointment had me in Euless this morning. The location of that appointment was a short distance from Collins Road. A short distance south on Collins Road, from that location, takes one to the Collins Road entry to River Legacy Park.

So, since I was in the neighborhood, I decided to roll my bike wheels on a few miles of the River Legacy Park paved trails.

That is the Trinity River my handlebars are looking at. Well, actually the handlebars are on the bridge that crosses Hurricane Creek, so that would be Hurricane Creek and the flooding Trinity River you are looking at.

In the River Legacy Park zone there are two creeks, Hurricane and Boyd Branch, which serve during a flood as escape valves, with the Trinity rushing in at high speed, filling multiple flood control basins that look like lakes, particularly now that they have been filled up. The Trinity has now receded enough that water is flowing back into the river from Hurricane Creek, instead of vice versa. I have seen this going both ways at the point in the process where Hurricane Creek becomes a roaring rapids.

Below is a look at one of the lakes filled by Boyd Branch. This one is the last one you come to before you reach the 7 miles end of the trail mark.

Above, on side of the lake opposite the handlebars you can see a little spot of white rising above the green. That would be the Dallas Cowboy Stadium.

I came upon two instances of the sign you see below, posted beside the trail.

The signs inform that the trail is closed ahead, that a better safer trail is being built due to erosion repairs.

Well, the trail was not closed at any point. I already mentioned I made it to the 7 mile end point. I saw no signs of any trail erosion. The paved trail appeared. to me, to be in great shape.

At the 5 mile point I came upon that which you see below, newly installed since last I rolled on this trail.

A bike repair station! On the left, attached to cords, are a  selection of various tools one might need to make a bike repair. The sign on the tool holder has one of those smart phone code deals which told you to scan it to get bike repair instructions. On the right is an extremely solid bike tire pump, with a gauge.

My worst flat tire experience ever occurred near this repair station. It was miles of walking the bike back to civilization. Walking when the air was heated to over 100. I don't think this bike repair station would have been of any use to me on that occasion.

As I drove into the Viridian development zone on Collins I was amazed at how much this has grown since I was last at this location. The landscaping along the road is impressive.

About a year ago I biked into the Viridian development. That was not possible today, not from the River Legacy Park trail. You can see why below.

I wonder if Viridian is going ahead with their original plan to turn the lake you see here into a public access beach type deal. Years ago I was told that that was the plan, back before Viridian was put on hold due to the Great Recession.

I had two snake encounters today. The first encounter was with a big snake. This gave me a good dose of adrenalin. The second snake was a little one.

A surprising number people where enjoying rolling their wheels. Many of them appeared nearing what one might characterize as elderly. I know I hope to be an 80 year old biker one day.....

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Fort Worth's Fourth Has Five VIP Levels With Some Having Private Bathrooms & Cash Bars

Captain Andy pointed me to that which you see here, last night.

I did not get around to clicking on that which Captain Andy pointed me to til this morning.

The link went to a webpage on the City of Fort Worth website with interesting information about how one can join the Fort Worth Oligarchy to have oneself a mighty fine VIP experience at Fort Worth's Fourth.

I will copy the information in its entirety for those wondering how one celebrates the Fourth of July in Fort Worth VIP style....

Fort Worth’s Fourth is coming back to Panther Island Pavilion, and this year you can celebrate the Fourth of July in style, thanks to new VIP experiences offered at the festival.

Five new VIP sections will be located across the festival grounds, each offering a unique experience. Access to the VIP areas will range in price based on the amenities the section offers. VIP amenities include prime fireworks and water show views, reserved seating, shaded lounge areas, private bathrooms and cash bars, VIP parking options, and more.

Prices for the five VIP areas range from $10-$40 per person depending on the experience. Access to each area is limited and tickets should be purchased online in advance.

As always, admission to the festival and all family activities such as zip lines, bounce houses, water slides and more, are free to the public. There will be live music from Jimmy Buffett tribute band The Land Sharks and high-energy cover band Downtown Fever.

Food, soda, water and beer will be available for purchase onsite. Gates open at 2 p.m.; live music will be onstage 6-9:30 p.m.; fireworks begin at about 10 p.m.

As always admission is free, along with all family activities?

But, for a fee Fort Worth 4th of July celebrators can gain access to one of five VIP areas, each offering different unique VIP experiences.

Including private bathrooms!

The VIP price ranges from $10 to $40 per person, depending on ones VIP level. The information does not include what price point includes access to those private  bathrooms.

Are the regular non-VIP people relegated to using one of those two lovely concrete enclosed outhouses which The Boondoggle has installed at the world's imaginary premiere urban music venue? I'm guessing extra outhouses are brought in for a special occasion.

I am also guessing those "private bathrooms" one pays extra for are also outhouses.

At what VIP level does one get a "cash bar"? A cash bar? As opposed to giving away booze for free? Will beer be available to be purchased with cash by the non-VIP people?

Is this a Trinity River Central City Panther Island Vision Boondoggle Product? I assume so, what with it taking place at Panther Island Pavilion, where there is no pavilion or island. And what with alcoholic beverages being prominently featured, at the cash bars.

How are the freeloading riffraff kept from using the VIP's special private bathrooms? Will there be security guards? A chain link fence separating the VIP's from the freeloading riffraff?

With 5 special VIP zones, each with their own special attributes, one can assume this must entail 5 separate enclosures to separate those who have paid for the privilege of being a VIP, from those who are not VIPs.

All in all something just seems, well, un-American about this VIP thing at Fort Worth's Fourth of July. Then again, it is sort of The Fort Worth Way to be a bit un-American at times.....

I Want A Donald Trump Plus A Couple Bush Piñatas To Smack

I saw that which you see here this morning on Facebook via both Miss Julie and Elsie Hotpepper.

The Miss Julie version seemed to indicate that the source was Mother Jones (no relation).

After Donald Trump's embarrassing longest I'm running for President speech in history, with his idiotic insults to our Mexican neighbors, on both sides of the border, I read that a Mexican piñata maker made a piñata of Donald Trump, with the piñata having an appropriately big mouth under Trump's patented mysterious hair style.

The above was the first look I got of the actual piñata, with the big mouth and unfortunate coif.

It  concerns me that America might be so foolish as to somehow elect Trump. Such an outcome does not seem remotely possible.

But, I thought the same thing prior to the 2000 election, that that which ended up being the result could not possibly happen.

And yet George W. Bush got elected.


And is now poised to eventually replace James Buchanan as the Worst President ever by those who rank such things.

Another president from Texas, Lyndon Baines Johnson, has had a Harry S Truman type post-presidency rise in the estimation of those who rank the presidents. In one or two surveys LBJ has joined Truman as one of the Top Ten Presidents. In one survey LBJ was tied with Ronald Reagan at #11.

I think it is likely pretty much universally agreed that there is no chance George W. Bush is going to experience an LBJ/Truman type rise in esteem as the years pass.

Unless somehow Iraq and Afghanistan miraculously morph into peaceful, economically booming, democractic examples of a better way for the other troubled countries in that region.

Fat chance in hell of that happening.

More mortifying, to me, than the idea of Trump somehow managing to get elected is the idea that George W's little brother, Jeb, could possibly be a third Bush president.

Were either to happen, Trump or Bush, methinks I will be making plans to seek refuge in Mexico. Or Canada. Likely my choice would be Mexico. I've always liked Mexico and Mexicans.

Canada and Canadians, not so much. That ending every sentence with "eh" really wears on my nerves.....

Monday, June 22, 2015

Kay Granger's Ironic Anonymous Avenger Hubris Detector

That which you see here was emailed to me yesterday by an entity I will refer to as the Anonymous Avenger.

What the Anonymous Avenger emailed me was a message from J.D. Granger's mama, Kay Granger. That is the face of Kay clipped off at the top of the message.

Did the Anonymous Avenger somehow get into Kay Granger's iPhone and acquire this? Or was it on Facebook, visible to everyone, with the Anonymous Avenger somehow screen capturing it on his or her iPhone, so as to email it to me?

The subject line of the email simply said "Ironic?"

I read the message and was not quite sure what was ironic.

The only thing I thought might be being referred to as ironic was Kay Granger's mention of her town's start as a fort being built at the confluence of the West and Clear Forks of the Trinity River, what with Kay Granger being part of the bizarre plot to destroy that historic confluence and turn it into what many refer to as Pond Granger, that being the little lake at the former confluence, brought about by what is known as America's Biggest Boondoggle, a boondoggle Kay Granger strongly supports because it will be giving her ne'er-do-well son, J.D., a job until it is time for him to retire.

Not being sure as to what was possibly ironic about Kay Granger's history lesson I replied to the Anonymous Avenger saying "I am feeling stupid this morning. I am not sure I get what is ironic."

To which the Anonymous Avenger replied "She is mentioning the very confluence she seeks to destroy."

So, I got that ironic part right.

And then the Anonymous Avenger added a further irony, which I had missed, saying "And she says General Worth did not live to see his project completed. She won't either if her son remains in charge".

Ouch. That is one pointed Anonymous Avenger.

I think Kay Granger is nearing 80 years old. She could easily last another 20 years. If she could stretch that 20 by another 10 I'm guessing she'd at least last long enough to see America's Biggest Boondoggle's three simple bridges, being constructed in slow motion, completed. And maybe she'd live long enough to see the ditch dug under the bridges, thus creating the imaginary island she worked so long and hard to bring about.

Let's see, in another 30 years J.D. Granger should be about his mother's current age. He would likely long been retired from America's Biggest Boondoggle.

And, with Fort Worth following the North Korea nepotism model, one of J.D. Granger's kids will likely then have followed dad's footsteps, being named Executive Director of America's Biggest Boondoggle by Jim Oliver's son who will have nepotistically replaced his dad as TRWD Dictator, I mean, Manager.

It's The Fort Worth Way.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Happy Father's Day To My Dad, Brother, Brother-in-Law, Nephew, Cousins & All The Other Good Papas

Above is a screen cap of Google's Father's Day animated Google Doodle with the animation paused on the part of the animation which looks to be a human Father holding a baby.

Google's animation appears to expand the Father's Day concept to the entire Animal Kingdom, with a fox, bird and possum and their offspring representing the non-human part of the Animal Kingdom.

The Fathers in my immediate relative circle are my dear ol' dad, the pa of me, my brother and my three sisters. My brother is the pa of two of my nephews, Jason and Joey. My brother-in-law is the pa of my other two nephews, Christopher and Jeremy. Jason is the pa of my nephew, Spencer Jack.

Jason is being a dad cut from the same mold as my dad, what with taking Spencer Jack on fun vacations. Currently I think Jason and Spencer Jack are still in Hawaii, but I do not know that for certain.

It was from my dad I learned to love a Roadtrip. Dad always made Roadtrips stress-free. Unflappable he was, not matter what, a vehicle breakdown, driving in Los Angeles for the first time, no matter what, totally unflappable.

I learned my highly evolved level of unflappability, driving-wise, from watching my dad drive in vexing traffic situations, like on the streets of San Francisco, a trailer in tow.

My first Roadtrip that took me to San Francisco, and beyond, free of the parental units, I was driving up Lombard Street, hoping to drive down the curvy downside, but my old Mustang's clutch started slipping. I had to back down the hill, other cars honking at me. I was unflappable, thanks to dad.

Later that same trip, after watching a late night taping of Laverne & Shirley at Paramount Studios, the clutch totally gave out on the streets of Hollywood. The clutch died right in front of a big service station. Spent the night sleeping in the car. Next morning the service station was able to fix the clutch. I was unflappable, again, thanks to dad.

I actually remember that weird night stuck in Hollywood as quite amusing. But was glad to see LA in my rear view mirror the next day.

Over the years there have been many a Roadtrip incident where my dad inherited unflappable-ness has been a good thing.

I remember a flat tire in Death Valley. There were two vehicles on this Roadtrip. The Goober Twins went into full panic mode at the flat tire. Their dad was not an unflappable sort, so they never learned the art of unflappability. I knew worse case scenario we could walk the five miles to Stovepipe Wells where I had made reservations for that night months prior. Turns out the spare worked fine, easily got to Stovepipe Wells, then the next day had a mighty fine time in the California town of Bishop getting the flat tire fixed.

That flat tire incident became known as the Curse of the Luxor Obelisk.

Anyway, Happy Father's Day.....

June 21 Summer Solstice Nude Hiking Father's Day On The Tandy Hills

Weeks ago the Tandy Hills Natural Area sent notice, via Facebook, that, in addition to being Father's Day and the Summer Solstice, today is also Nude Hiking Day.

Before installing the CLOTHING OPTIONAL BEYOND THIS POINT sign on the Tandy Hills the Fort Worth city attorney was asked if it was okay for the Tandy Hills to be a proper location to celebrate this important international holiday.

The Fort Worth city attorney gave the okay, with a few cautionary parameters. So, check out those parameters before you take your clothes off on the Tandy Hills today. Or any other day.

What with all the rain that has drenched the Tandy Hills and surrounding areas in the past several weeks I am thinking today would make for a possibly muddy naked hike.

For that muddy reason alone, I think I will forego participating.

Unless I change my mind.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

The Indian Ghosts Close Village Creek Due To Flooding While Mallard Cove Dries Up

This afternoon I heard the Indian Ghosts who haunt Arlington's Village Creek Natural Historical Area calling me.

So, I rolled my motorized wheels to Arlington to find the Natural Historical Area closed due to flooding.

That surprised me since it has not rained, as far as I know, since Bill visited on Wednesday.

I did not feel like rolling on to one of Arlington's other parks where I take my handlebars, like River Legacy or Veterans Park.

So, I dejectedly turned around and headed home.

I got to Cooks Lane and then it occurred to me to continue north on Cooks Lane, past John T. White Road, to Randol Mill Road to take a left to check out Mallard Cove Park to see if it was a muddy mess from being flooded.


I got to the Mallard Cove Park parking lot, got out, walked til I had a view of the paved trails and was surprised to see no indication that this place had been recently inundated with water. I figured when the water receded there would be mud, litter, logs, all sorts of a mess.

But, if I have not seen it flooded, today I would not have thought anything at all unusual had happened here. The grass was recently mowed. Everything looked clean as new.

Below is the picture I took from the same vantage point as the picture above. You can see the bench above under water in the picture below...

You can see mud in the lower left of the above picture. Where did all that mud go? You can see other pictures of what a flooded Mallard Cove Park looked like in the blogging titled Mallard Cove Park Is Underwater With Some Mysterious Bubbles Burbling along with video of the burbling.

All in all I ended up having myself a mighty fine time rolling my wheels around Mallard Cove, even though there were no Indian Ghosts making their presence known...

The Fort Worth Way Runs Deep With Corrupt Cronyism

A few days ago on the Mary Kelleher blog I read a blogging titled You Make the Call...Cronyism or Not! where Mary Kelleher described an instance of wanton cronyism to which she objected at the most recent TRWD Board Meeting.

Mary Kelleher's questions about the cronyism were pooh poohed by the TRWD Dictator, I mean, Manager, who Mary Kelleher refers to as Mis-Manager, Jim Oliver.

Apparently Oliver does not understand what cronyism is, because he tried to claim that Mary Kelleher's relationship with campaign contributor, Monty Bennett, was cronyism.

Clearly Jim Oliver does not understand what cronyism is.

As you can see, via the definition above, cronyism is the appointment of friends and associates to positions of authority, without proper regard to their qualifications.

You know, like how without consulting the TRWD Board, Dictator Oliver hired an unqualified Assistant Tarrant County District Attorney named J.D. Granger to be the Executive Director of what has become America's Biggest Boondoggle.

That is a case of classic, corrupt cronyism.

And why cronyism is frowned upon due to the bad results which frequently follow.

Results like a boondoggle.

The thing with corruption of the TRWD sort is those involved in the corruption don't think they are doing anything corrupt, because they do not get called on it by anyone with the clout to make it stop. Yet one more example of how Fort Worth suffers due to not having a real newspaper doing real investigative journalism.

In other words, the TRWD, as it operates in Texas, could not get away with its corrupt shenanigans in my old home state with its multiple real newspapers. And a well educated progressive population of voters.

If an election took place in, let's say, Seattle, where a ridiculously out of proportion number of absentee ballots showed up, with the result of the election giving two controversial characters a landslide win to a level never seen in previous elections for that position, well, there would be a clarion call for an investigation.

In Fort Worth, nary a peep. Not from the Star-Telegram, not from the Fort Worth Business Press, not from Fort Worth Weekly.

Maybe the FBI is on the case. We can only hope.

Did the Star-Telegram ever share with its readers the notoriously corrupt act of cronyism in which a TRWD Board Director finagled a sweetheart deal to use TRWD public funds to rescue a bankrupt friend by paying double market value for said friend's contaminated land on which the first drive-in movie theater of the 21st century was built?

Corruption and Cronyism runs deep in Fort Worth.

Real deep.

It is part and parcel of that which is known as The Fort Worth Way.

This will not change until Fort Worth gets a real newspaper and the people of Fort Worth cease being sheep.

The South has a long history of the type corruption that is considered perfectly normal by way too many in Fort Worth and its environs.

Back in the last century, next door neighbor to Texas, Louisiana, had a politician named Huey Long who operated in the Fort Worth Way.

A book and movie sort of based on the Huey Long story, named All the King's Men, is instructive regarding corrupt cronyism. The King in All the King's Men is Jim Lane, I mean, Willie Stark, played by Broderick Crawford.

Willie Stark was quite popular with the voters, for awhile, bringing all sorts of vision to his bleak state, running roughshod over those who did not share his vision. Eventually meeting an untimely end, an end more dire than the criminal investigations I suspect may be in the future for Fort Worth's Willie Starks....

Friday, June 19, 2015

Hope Everyone Is Having A Happy Juneteenth All Things Considered

Prior to moving to Texas I had not heard of Juneteenth.

In 1980 Texas was the first state to declare Juneteenth to be a state holiday. Since then 42 other states, including my old home state of Washington, have joined Texas in officially recognizing this holiday.

Why Juneteenth? Why not September 22, when Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation? Or January 1 when the Emancipation Proclamation went into effect?

Well, the answer to that question has to do with Texas, with Texas being the last state of the Confederacy restored to being under American control.

It was not until June 18, 1865 that 2,000 federal troops arrived at Galveston Island to begin the post Civil War occupation of Texas.

On June 19 Union General Gordon Granger stood on a balcony at Galveston's Ashton Villa to read to the crowd below what was known as General Order No. 3, with that order being the total emancipation of slaves.

Celebrating erupted among the last of the African Americans to learn they were now free.

And now, all these years later it is more than a little sickening that there are still some Americans who are hate filled moronic idiotic evil creeps who need to be removed from the planet.....

Not Thanking Fort Worth Voters For More Buses With More Options & Fewer Outhouses

File this in the folder containing things I see in other newspapers, such as the Seattle Times, which I would never see in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

That being the advertisement you see here which was on the Seattle Times online front page, with the City of Seattle thanking Seattle voters for voting for more buses with more options.

At my current location in Texas I have been appalled more than once by having a local tell me only poor people ride buses.

I have long wondered how such a bone-headed idea takes root.

I also wonder what one of those locals thinks if they travel to a modern American city with modern public transit, like New York City, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Portland, Seattle or Dallas.

Do they think all those people using public transit are poor?

Most every county in my old home state has public transit. The current county I live in, Tarrant, in Texas, has only one town with a semi-developed  public transit system. That would be Fort Worth.

Fort Worth's buses are a bit, well, minimalist. Luxury liners, they ain't. But, why should poor people expect a luxury ride on public transit?

Skagit County, from whence I came, has public transit called Skagit Transit. Skagit County covers 1,920 square miles, with a population of 118,837.

King County, where Seattle is, has public transit called Sound Transit. King County covers 2,307 square miles, with a population of 2,079,967.

Tarrant County has no public transit, other than Fort Worth's T. Tarrant County covers only 897 square miles, with a population of 1,809,034.

How can a Texas county, a fraction the size of Skagit and King County, and much more densely populated, not have public transit covering the entire county?

What does a local think if they fly in to, well, Sea-Tac, to find they can get on Link light rail which will take them to downtown Seattle for less than it costs for a day pass on a Fort Worth bus? What does that same local think when they ride that Link train into downtown Seattle to find themselves entering a tunnel under the city, with five big underground transit stations? Does this clue the local as to how far behind, transportation-wise, their hometown is?

If the Fort Worth buses are for poor people, why does it cost more to ride them, significantly more, than King or Skagit County public transit?

Both King and Skagit transit offer discounts for various categories. Greatly reduced youth, over 65, disabled, and low income fares. In other words an actual poor person in King or Skagit County can get a bus ticket at about half price, or less.

A month pass on Skagit Transit is $25.00. $12.50 at reduced fare. Similar rates for King County transit.

A month pass on a Fort Worth bus costs $60.00. There are reduced fares available for students, senior citizens and the disabled. I found no mention of reduced fares for poor people. A reduced fare Fort Worth bus pass costs $5 more than a Skagit Transit full fare month pass. In other words, the Fort Worth reduced fare is $30.00. To get the reduced fare you have to jump through some Fort Worth hoops, at various locations, proving you deserve to pay less. Then you pay $2.00 to get yourself a Reduced Fare Photo Identification Card.

Skagit Transit has all sorts of special deals, like a greatly reduced rate for students at Skagit Valley College, with a bus pass for an entire quarter for only $15. No mention was made of needing a Reduced Fare Photo Identification Card. I suspect ones Student I.D. likely suffices in a land where common sense prevails.

The last time I rode Fort Worth's buses, about three years ago, I thought the fare for a day pass was still $3.00. It had been raised to $3.50. I had three dollar bills with me, along with larger bills. Fort Worth drivers can not make change. The driver let me get on board and then when we got to a strip mall he sent me inside a donut shop to get change.

How bizarre.

Now read how the Skagit Transit system handles this same issue....

While drivers cannot make change, our fare boxes issue a change card for the difference between what you owe and what you deposit in the fare box. For example, if you pay a $1.00 fare with a $5 bill, the fare box will issue a Skagit Transit Change Card for $4.00. The next time you ride Skagit Transit, dunk the card in the slot. The fare box will deduct $1.00 each time you use it, print the dollar value on your card and return it to you.

How can Skagit County, small of population, have a much more sophisticated system, in this instance, than big ol' Fort Worth?

How can Fort Worth's public transit planners not realize they are charging far more, fare-wise, than areas of America with far more successful public transit?

I realize I may be being a bit unfair, comparing Fort Worth and Tarrant County to Seattle and King and Skagit County.

Skagit and King County and Seattle, are far more prosperous than Tarrant County and Fort Worth.

For example.

The majority of streets in towns in Skagit and King County have sidewalks. Wide sidewalks. On both sides of the street.

Parks in Skagit and King County have modern  restroom facilities. With running water.

So, I realize in a town where outhouses are the norm in city parks. And people are okay with that. Where most streets have no sidewalks. And people are okay with that.

That those same people are apparently okay with having what amounts to being an outhouse level of public transit.

I suppose the majority local attitude is, just like with public transit, only poor people use parks or sidewalks, hence the ubiquitous outhouses and narrow sidewalks, in the few places those amenities exist.

Watch the below video I made back in the summer of 2008 and you will see what must be a lot of poor people using Seattle's modern public transit. Note all the buses. And all the poor people onboard.

Imagine a similar scene in Fort Worth. I know, I can't either....

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Denton's Anti-Fracking Protester Violet Palmer Is A Jeffersonian American Hero

Carved on his Washington, D.C. memorial is one of the third American President's most remembered quotes.

"I have sworn upon the altar of God eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man."

What would Thomas Jefferson think of the 2015 version of the country he worked so hard to found?

On the day Jefferson replaced John Adams he immediately moved to correct Federalist abuses of power by freeing everyone who had been imprisoned or was being prosecuted by Adams' Alien and Sedition Acts. Jefferson freed everyone without asking what the accused had supposedly done or against whom they had supposedly offended.

The Federalists were sort of a precursor to modern day reactionary conservatives. Thomas Jefferson was the first Democrat president, though at the time his party was known as the Democratic-Republicans.

What would Jefferson think of Texas? And the Republican controlled Texas legislature, with the Republicans controlled by the gas and oil industry lobbyists who got their stooges to pass HB 40, banning towns like Denton, Texas, or any other town in Texas, from enacting local regulations regulated gas drilling activity in their towns?

Denton's voters had voted to ban gas drilling and fracking in their city limits.

But, in modern day Republican controlled Texas you can not have that sort of citizen empowered democracy determining what happens in your town.


Denton has given us a new American Hero.

A 92 year old woman named Violet Palmer, hard of seeing, but strong of conviction.

Violet Palmer, a woman Thomas Jefferson would be proud to call an American, believes it is ones moral responsibility to disobey the law when the law is wrong, when the law is impinging upon ones right, when the law is corrupted by a corrupted system.

Violet Palmer staged a protest at a Denton gas pad site that was back fracking after the Republicans took away Denton's right to self determination.

Violet Palmer was taken into custody and booked into jail on Tuesday.

What would Thomas Jefferson think of American police arresting a 92 year old partially blind woman engaged in peaceful protest, that being one of the rights Jefferson labored to have included in the American Constitution?

I suspect Thomas Jefferson would have suggested that the Denton police and other citizens of Denton join Violet Palmer in her non-violent protest.

Arresting any person engaged in exercising their right to peacefully protest anything their beliefs compel them to protest is anti-American in the Thomas Jefferson version of America.

To arrest a peacefully protesting 92 year old semi-blind woman, is, well, evil and embarrassing.....

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Fort Worth Weekly Feels We Are Lucky Fort Worth City Leaders Prepared For Storm Bill's Flooding

This afternoon Elsie Hotpepper pointed me to something somewhat amusing in Fort Worth Weekly's online Blotch blog.

That is that which I am talking about, screen capped, but I edited the title due to this being a family friendly blog, which for common decency's sake does not use vulgarities of the F-word sort, lest some young impressionable mind see such and conclude such is appropriate in polite society.

So, I changed the title to "More Fun Rain!"

The blurb which caught the Hotpepper's eye was....

Did you ever think we’d be complaining about too much rain in Texas? Even Pete Delkus is wearing arm floaties to work. Luckily our city leaders are preparing for the latest round of rainfall brought by Hurri-storm Bill, the least menacing-sounding name for a storm since Hurricane Mildred is the ’40s.

Who would these Fort Worth city leaders be who are preparing for this latest round of flooding? And how is it they are preparing?

The same city leaders who led so ineptly when the West 7th area was rapidly developed, with little attention paid to drainage, turning the area into a lake when too much rain falls?

The same city leaders who go along with America's Biggest Boondoggle, that supposed flood control project combined with an economic development project which has been going basically nowhere in slow motion for well over a decade?

The same city leaders who have done nothing when gas drillers drilling in Fort Worth, particularly East Fort Worth, alter the topography, causing flooding where no flooding had occurred previously?

What has gone awry at Fort Worth Weekly?

It's like what used to be the only publication Fort Worth had which came close to being a real newspaper has now been co-opted and has taken to operating in the Fort Worth Way, as in kowtowing to the ruling oligarchy, blindly spewing the party line's propaganda, the flooded people be damned....

Tropical Storm Bill Visiting Miss Puerto Rico's Babies Thinking About Sending A Postcard From Hawaii

This afternoon I got a catcall from Miss Puerto Rico's babies, Stella and Bella, telling me I should come over for a visit so I could take a picture from Miss Puerto Rico's high rise balcony of the remnants of Tropical Storm Bill while Bill slowly makes his exit from North Texas.

Rain has ceased dripping, for now. I've not heard any thunder booms. I am assuming the worst of this latest Texas weather calamity is over.

When I entered their abode, Stella and Bella were lounging in their sun room. The babies no longer run away from me and hide. The girls are not yet one year old but they are BIG. Stella started out as the runt, but she is now bordering on being chubby.

I forgot to mention, in the view above you are looking north, Dallas is to the right, beautiful downtown Fort Worth is to the left.

Changing the subject from Bill and babies to something else.

Yesterday I said something along the line that I wondered if Spencer Jack would be sending his great-grandparental units in Arizona a postcard from Hawaii.

That generated an amusing comment from someone calling him or herself Anonymous....

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Talking To My Mom While Staying Dry Waiting For Tropical Storm Bill":

I'm not sure Spencer Jack knows what a postcard is or how they are suppose to work. Is that an app on his IPod? This blogger is sure dating himself.

Well, let's Google "Honolulu Postcards" and see if such a thing still exists in this century....

Hundreds upon hundreds of Hawaii themed postcards are available to be sent to great-grandparental units who are not connected to the Internet or an iPod, but who do have a mailbox.

Let me see if I can remember when last I opened my mailbox to find a postcard.

I remember, it was a couple years ago, I got several postcards from Alaska, sent by Spencer Jack and his dad's, former aunts. Spencer Jack and his dad's replacement aunts frequently travel in their RV. I am sure they send postcards whilst they are roadtripping.

Now that you are making me think about it I can not remember the last time I mailed a postcard to anyone.

Tropical Storm Bill Has Arrived With A Structurally Compromised Precinct Line Bridge Over The Trinity River

My limited photographer skills prevented me from capturing what my eyes were seeing looking out my computer room window at trees swaying and a downpour pouring down due to the arrival this morning of Tropical Storm Bill.

By the time I got in the pool, soon after dawn's early light, Bill had already almost filled the pool to the max.

I felt a bit foolish when I got in the water in a heavy downpour due to having brought a towel with me, in a plastic bag, to keep it dry.

I'm assuming I don't need to explain why taking a towel to a pool in a tropical downpour is foolish.

I heard a few minutes ago, via the radio, that both D/FW and Love Field are shut down due to the rain.

Last night, on Facebook, I had an interesting conversation in which I learned that a bridge I use every once in awhile to cross the Trinity River is now closed, damaged by the Memorial Day flood. I'll copy part of that Facebook conversation below...

  • Miki Hojnacki Von Luckner Hey, have you heard that the one way the East side of FW had in/out during the last storm surge is no longer a viable route? The bridge at Precinct and Trinity became "structurally compromised during the flooding" and is now closed indefinitely. So if Precinct South of Trinity and Trinity East and West of Precinct flood again we are water locked in/out of our neighborhood? I know it's not all TRWD because of the poorly timed construction of ALL roads in our area but if better flood control, well. . . .
    Like · Reply · 1 · 18 hrs · Edited
  • Durango Jones Well, that's gonna make the traffic mess on 820 a bit worse. I've used that Precinct Line route to avoid the crowded freeway many a time. I hope The Boondoggle is not gonna be in charge of building a new Precinct Line bridge. It takes them four years to build a bridge over dry land, over water would really vex the process....
    Like · Reply · 4 · 18 hrs
    • Miki Hojnacki Von Luckner Well it's taking the city over 2 years to rebuild the flood damaged Trinity bridge between Norwood and Bell Spur. Mind you it's being rebuilt at the same level with no efforts to alleviate flooding every time it rains. So it would be anyone's guess who's helping with that project. . .
      Like · 18 hrs

During the Memorial Day flooding, after I checked out the flooded Mallard Cove Park, I headed east on Randol Mill Road and discovered the road closed just past the River Bottom Bar. That is close to the now defunct bridge. I knew the Precinct Line Bridge was closed during the flood, due to the Trinity getting too close, or topping over the bridge.

Til last night I did not know the bridge had been structurally compromised. That backroads route is a frequently used bypass to get past rush hour traffic jams.

Those of us in East Fort Worth have lost yet one more avenue of escape...

UPDATE: I think I am confused about what bridge or bridges have been structurally compromised by the Memorial Day Flood. After reading my blogging about the Precinct Line Bridge Ms. Von Luckner Facebook messaged me, which resulted in the following, possibly, clarifying exchange.....

Ms. Von Luckner: Hey you !! Fun that I'm part of one of your write ups yet wanted to be sure you understood which bridge. It's the one over Walker Branch Creek between Hwy 10 & Trinity Blvd (the creek meets up with the Trinity River). A new bridge is under construction and I guess the old bridge was "not shored up" enough to handle the rains so they closed the road at Trinity indefinitely.  I love reading all your posts !!

Me: You're talking about the other flood damaged bridge between Norwood and Bell Spur? Or are you saying that the Precinct Line bridge across the Trinity is not closed due to structural woes?

Ms. Von Luckner: There are 2 bridges on Precinct. The one closest to Mary, not damaged, and the smaller one between Hwy 10 & Precinct but it's not over the Trinity River, it's over Walker Branch Creek that feeds into the Trinity and also flows under the bridge between Bell Spur & Norwood.  Confusing I know, everyone thinks that's the Trinity River but it connects to it I believe kind of close to the horse ranch down from Mary's place.

Me again, near as I can tell I guess one can still cross the Trinity River on the Precinct Line bridge, but ones progress north will come to an end due to another bridge problem over another body of water.