Sunday, October 14, 2018

Driving Miss Daisy To Mesa's Riverview Park For Zip Line Fishing Rope Climbs

Every day, the always wanting to please Miss Daisy asks, multiple times a day, if there is anything you would like to see or do here that you have not yet seen or done?

Usually every time Miss Daisy asks such I answer no.

Miss Daisy has been multiple times asking Big Ed her favorite question. I had warned him this would happen. Big Ed has several answers he repeats in rotation.

Such as I would like to ride the Metro light rail. And that open beer hall in Gilbert looks fun. And Saturday night in downtown Scottsdale.

Miss Daisy rejects Big Ed's suggestions, which then has me asking Miss Daisy why she keeps asking Big Ed if there is anything he wants to see or do if you are gonna say no to everything he wants to see or do?

So, today I told Big Ed to say he has long wanted to see Riverview Park, in Mesa, located by the Chicago Cubs Cactus League version of Wrigley Field on Dobson Road, and then drive the Rio Salado into Tempe.

Today Miss Daisy went along with that which Big Ed asked. Which soon had Big Ed rolling Miss Daisy on her new wheels.

Riverview Park is the most elaborate, over the top kid's playground type park I have ever seen. Zip lines, climbing rope contraptions on steroids, a big water plaza with fountains to get the kids wet, slides built into the side of hills. And other stuff I have forgotten and should have photo documented.

Oh, and a big fishing lake, which is what Big Ed is rolling Miss Daisy across at the top.


The above contraption looked fun. And a bit difficult. I was not able to look long enough to figure it, due to the fact that Miss Daisy insists on needing to keep moving.


Rolling towards the above climbing rope playground attraction I did not see how this could be safe. A closer look showed a thickly padded landing zone should one fall. Still, looks scary.


I want to be in the Phoenix zone when David, Theo and Ruby are here so I can go play at this park with them. Spencer Jack may be getting a bit too old and sophisticated for this type playing.

Leaving Riverview Park we drove Rio Salado til a wreck detoured us, eventually through the heart of downtown Tempe, back to Rio Salado where a left turn onto that road showed a giant Octoberfest in full swing. And so I was not able to park where I wanted to park so as to have Big Ed roll Miss Daisy across the long, impressive pedestrian bridge which crosses Tempe Town Lake.

I see all this incredibly cool development along a manmade waterway and wonder if seeing this type thing is what inspired some Fort Worth lamebrains to deludedly think they could work a similar miracle with the polluted Trinity River and the eyesore industrial wasteland through which that river flows.

Leaving the downtown Tempe zone we ended up in Papago Park with me unable to find the Hole in the Rock parking lot. I did find the Hole in the Rock though.

As we were driving, Spencer Jack and Hank Frank's Grandpa Jake texted me that a batch of pickled asparagus was waiting for me if I wanted to drive by. I texted we were in the neighborhood, and so with some slight directional difficulty we arrived at that destination.

Miss Daisy refused to get out of the car.

Have I mentioned before that Miss Daisy can be a bit difficult? And exhausting....

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Another Anonymous Interesting Trinity River Vision Development

Last night an incoming email arrived which caused me to digitally connect from Arizona to the DFW zone to ask a question or two.

The email...

Please do not reveal me as source of this information.

Another "interesting" development at the TRV...
_________

I checked out the information and learned someone is getting married.

Getting married?

 That happens all the time. What is interesting about these particular nuptials?

Well. I think I may have some ideas.

Years ago, soon after bizarre signs began appearing on what is now known as "Panther Island", where there is no island, and never will be an island, with those signs touting "Trinity River Vision Underway", I heard from someone calling herself "Deep Moat" who also did not want her real name revealed.

Deep Moat was upset regarding things she was learning about that which was then known as the Trinity River Vision. Things like all the perks TRV employees were getting, like new iPads and iPhones, a well supplied liquor cabinet in TRV headquarters, company cars. I forget what else, due to the fact that that which has become America's Biggest Boondoggle has been limping along for so many years I have difficulty remembering it all.

But, I do remember the number one thing Deep Moat was upset about was the relationship which had developed between J.D. Granger, married with children, and a Trinity River Vision employee. At the time I did not know the name of the employee with whom Granger was philandering.

Deep Moat preferred to keep that secret, way back then.

I remember one of the things about the relationship between J.D. and his girl friend, which troubled Deep Moat, was that the two had gone on a fact finding junket together, just the two of them, ostensibly on TRV business which somehow necessitated staying over night in an expensive downtown Dallas hotel.

At TRV expense.

Deep Moat also thought all the travel junkets which J.D. was taking with groups of fellow TRV employees, including his girl friend, to various locations, supposedly to check out how those locations managed to manage successful water based developments, was a waste of public funds, which to Deep Moat's thinking were financing a frat boy's dream world.

I doubt any of those junkets ever included going to a city which had created a make believe island which necessitated building bridges over dry land to connect to that imaginary island. There are not many towns in America where the public would tolerate nonsense of that sort.

So, as the years went by, and the Trinity River Vision morphed into America's Biggest Boondoggle, J.D. Granger divorced his wife. And came out in the open with his relationship with his employee.

Shanna Cate.

And now they are getting married.

On an island in Mexico.

The Trinity River Vision was originally touted as a much needed flood control project and economic development scheme.

A flood control project where there has been no flooding for well over a half century. Unlike other areas of Fort Worth, which have flooded repeatedly, with deadly results.

And if that economic development was so vitally needed, why has the project limped along most of this century, under funded, seeking federal handouts?

While TRV employees, such as J.D. Granger are well paid. With J.D. currently making around $200K a year, plus perks and benefits. J.D.'s fiance, Shanna, is also well paid.

The pair has done well, economically, with the TRV economic development scheme.

Had J.D.'s mother, Congresswoman, Kay Granger, not nepotistically gotten this job for her son, for which he had ZERO qualifications, J.D. would likely still be a low level prosecutor, making far less than $200K a year.

And not able to afford an elaborate expensive wedding on an island in Mexico.

Reading the details of J.D. and Shanna's upcoming wedding via the website link anonymously sent it appears that with the contact info anyone can call or email and book one of the rooms J.D.'s wedding team has secured at this Mexican island resort. There is also info about making travel arrangements.

I hazard to guess that among the wedding guests will be the many others who have actually benefited from the Trinity River Vision economic development scheme.

Such as whoever has made a small fortune making copious amounts of ridiculous signage. 

Such as whoever has made a small fortune publishing the copious amounts of ridiculous printed publications.

Such as whoever has made a small fortune making America's Biggest Boondoggle's ridiculous websites.

Such as whoever has made a small fortune spewing the TRV's publicity propaganda.

Such as whoever pockets the money it costs the TRV to occupy the ground floor of the Star-Telegram building.

Such as whoever made a million bucks making that ridiculous homage to an aluminum trash can which sits in the center of the Boondoggle's unfinished roundabout traffic circle eyesore.

Anyway, it does my bitter heart good to see someone benefiting in such a hubris laden way from the failed economic scheme known as the Trinity River Central City Uptown Panther Island District Vision, and that those generous voters voted on May 5 to give the TRV another quarter billion bucks.

Maybe J.D. and Shanna can get another pay raise as a wedding present from the good people of Fort Worth...

Friday, October 12, 2018

Winning Many Penny At Ak-Chin Casino Before Penny's Maricopa McDonald's

What you are seeing here is my current computer room in my current abode.

We have been in Arizona since Monday, but only last night did Miss Daisy learn of our arrival.

Mom called in mid afternoon, yesterday. I did not answer. A few hours later I called mom and told her we'd made it to Arizona. Mom asked where we were in Arizona. I said I was not sure, but we might not make it to Sun Lakes for a few hours. I told mom I'd told Big Ed that I was sure there would be ice cream. Mom confirmed one of her freezers had lots of ice cream.

About the time mom confirmed the ice cream supply she said a car had driven into her driveway, and that she thought it was my sister. I told mom I'd hang up so she could go open her door. Mom said no, hang on. Mom then opened the door to see me standing there with the phone. A few seconds later mom realized she'd been tricked. And that my sister was not there.

About a half hour later I found myself deep into the first incident of driving Miss Daisy. To Wendy's to get something called Four for Four. After a lot of confusion at the drive-thru I drove away with three bags of Four for Four.

Trust me on this. You do not want to have yourself a Wendy's Four for Four. I do not know why mom has developed this unseemly affection for fast food of the Wendy's Four for Four type.

And then today I had my second driving Miss Daisy experience. This time with Sister Jackie, Big Ed and Spencer Jack and Hank Frank's Grandpa Jake along. Prior to leaving mom's abode Big Ed and I put together mom's new chair transport device.

The destination today was Maricopa. First to the Ak-Chin Casino were I once again won big whilst not having a clue what I was doing. The casino experience started with my brother insisting Big Ed and I get something called something like a Player's Card, because this would give you some sort of great deal.

I got us parked on level five of the casino parking garage, then got out Miss Daisy's new wheels to elevate to the ground floor. Eventually we made it to the location  where one gets their Player's Card. I handed the Player's Card purveyor my driver's license. A couple minutes later she said I could not get a new card because I already had one.

Huh? I have never ever had any sort of casino rewards card. Ever.

And the computer data said I had acquired this card in 1996 at a Harrah's casino in Laughlin, Nevada. I have never been to Laughlin. In 1996 I did go to Las Vegas, over Thanksgiving. I told the lady that and she suggested I may have taken the short drive south to Laughlin and that I just did not remember doing so. I asked her what address the computer data said was mine. She then read off my Mount Vernon address.

Why and how would anyone get my driver's license info and use it to get a casino rewards card? Extremely perplexing. And sort of aggravating.

Somehow Big Ed was successfully able to get one of those apparently precious Player's Cards. Sister Jackie then led us to the location of the slot machines on which I had previously won big. First Sister Jackie inserted her first husband's card into the machine. I then proceeded to more than double the amount on that card, before I cashed it out. Then Sister Jackie walked me through inserting Big Ed's card. That was more complicated due to another piece of paper needing to be loaded into another slot which somehow added ten bucks to the Big Ed Player's Card account,

I then proceeded to push the play button. This was a penny slot machine. But the lowest bet was fifty pennies. Have I already mentioned I do not understand, even remotely, these new style slot machines? Time and again I was winning pennies, in copious amounts. And then I accidentally hit the 100 pennies button to the momentary horror of Sister Jackie and Grandpa Jake. But that horror soon abated because that spin turned into a ten spin automatic bonus round where I once again accrued a small fortune in pennies.

Eventually I decided I had enough pennies so I rolled Miss Daisy to the machine in which one inserts their redemption vouchers.

As we began our exit Sister Jackie decided we might like something from the bar. So, we all ended up with very spicy Bloody Mary's. Tasty. Don't worry, mom's had no vodka in it. Nor did mine.

Leaving the casino Miss Daisy directed me to drive to Penny's Maricopa McDonald's, which seemed appropriate, what with me having won all those pennies.

I think it is fair to say that, compared to Wendy's, McDonald's is gourmet fare. I only had a fish sandwich, double cheeseburger, buttermilk chicken sandwich, fries, spicy BBQ chicken strips and Coke. But Big Ed amazed all, including Penny, with the volume he consumed. He had everything I had, plus starting off with a vanilla ice cream cone, then when all the others, but I, went into ordering dessert mode, Big Ed had another cone, plus a chocolate chip frappe and a couple chocolate chip cookies.

When I delivered Miss Daisy back to her abode, and Sister Jackie and Grandpa Jake had left, Miss Daisy asked, "So, what are we gonna do this afternoon?" I told Miss Daisy it was already afternoon.

This is going to be an exhausting month....

Thursday, October 11, 2018

New Suquamish Ferry Floating Sounder Rail Riding With Spencer Jack

Incoming email with photo documentation this morning from my Favorite Nephew Jason....

FUD-

Spencer took me down to Mulkiteo to ride a brand new ferry boat, the MV Suquamish.  Still smelled like fresh paint. 

After a ferry boat ride to Clinton and back, we enjoyed Ivar’s Clam Chowder, then FNSJ caught the Sounder Commuter Train up to the Everett Station.

His light rail solo ride took him only 8 minutes.

Thus he had to wait an additional 10 minutes for me to pick him up for our journey home.

Thought you would enjoy the photos.

-FNJ
_________________

Seems like only yesterday, shortly before moving to Texas, that Spencer Jack's dad, also known as my Favorite Nephew Jason, or FNJ, took me north to Canada where we boarded the Skytrain at the then most southern boarding point. We rode the Skytrain to the Canada Place Station, or whatever the cruise ship looking building which was built for Expo 86 is called, to board the Sea Bus to float across the bay to North Vancouver.

It must be some sort of genetic disposition us Jones boys share to like public transportation of the train sort.

The email information did not make clear if the below photo was taken before Spencer Jack solo boarded the Sounder train, or after he got off the train in Everett.


If FNSJ and FNJ were to come to Arizona right now we could ride the Valley Metro Rail. But no ferry boats...

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Superior Apache Tear Copper Mining With Grandpa Jake

This morning, after swimming with some of the Sun Lakes Lady League swimmers, Big Ed and I drove north to Scottsdale to Casa Jake's for a lunch buffet of ham soup, fried chicken, buttery whole grain bread and strawberries.

After lunch Spencer Jack and Hank Frank's grandpa suggested seeing some superior scenery by driving to Superior, where SJ and HF's grandpa wanted to visit the World's Smallest Museum to see if there was any validity to that museum's claim to have on display the world's biggest Apache Tear.

We got to Superior to soon discover the World's Smallest Museum was closed. Jake was determined to see the supposed world's biggest Apache Tear, so we opted to visually break in to the museum via looking through a window.

Looking through the World's Smallest Museum's window Jake was able to see the Apache Tear display and was able to determine that the World's Smallest Museum's Apache Tear was bigger than Jake's biggest Apache Tear.

After the museum visit our driver pointed the under powered Honda to a hilly mountain road, with a HUGE copper mine operation our destination goal. We got to the copper mine to find the access to the copper mine scenic overlook was closed.

Even so we were able to see a lot of the HUGE mining pit and the giant piles of earth which had been removed from that pit. We explored a couple of company towns which we assumed were occupied by those who work in the various copper operations.

I have seen copper pit mining type operations before. One near Ely, Nevada comes to mind. It was also HUGE, with big trucks making their way up and down the pit. Because we could not get to the overlook today we were not able to look into today's pit to see the giant trucks. I remember mining pits in Bisbee, which is also in Arizona. And one in Lead, South Dakota.

But this mining operation today was the biggest I have ever eye witnessed.

We are planning on returning to the Superior area to hike to some caves where we get to dig for Apache Tears, hoping to find one bigger than the world's biggest, currently in the World's Smallest Museum...

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Show Low Snow Switchbacking Salt River Canyon To Home In Arizona

Well. We made it to our destination. The roadtrip to that destination was far more adventurous than anticipated.

As in driving through some of the most torrential rain in memory.

And then, soon upon reaching Arizona, nearing the mountain town of Show Low.

Snow.

Snow was something I did not anticipate. Hence totally underdressed. And cold during the multiple vehicle exits.

Being cold soon abated as the elevation dropped the closer we got to the Valley of the Sun. Where for the first time since leaving Texas we saw the sun.

The biggest surprise of this roadtrip happened soon upon leaving Show Low, via Highway 60. I knew via the map that this was considered to be a scenic route. I had assumed it would be the Painted Desert type of scenic.

Again I was wrong. Instead it was the Grand Canyon type of Arizona scenic.

A few miles west of Show Low we saw we were following along a canyon. At that point the canyon did not seem too deep or big. That soon changed. A road sign advised scenic overlook ahead, so I stopped to look over the overlook. That is the view you see at the top. This was to be the first of many scenic overlooks.

Several miles later a series of long switchbacks took us to a bridge across what I then learned was Salt River Canyon. Or, what I later learned my sister referred to as Grand Canyon-lite.

That bottom of Salt River Canyon location had a rest area on steroids visitor center. I decided this was a good location for a crackers and cheese break. Til I stepped outside and decided it was too cold to sit at a picnic table.

From the rest area I look down from the over look to see what you see below.


A group at the edge of the Salt River. After a walk across the old highway bridge which had been turned into a pedestrian bridge I decided to go down the stairs you see below to join the group above for a closer look at the river.


It had been years since I had had the opportunity to run up and down stairs such as those above. Wait. Just remembered I ran up stairs summer of 2017 when I was in Arizona, in downtown Phoenix. Arizona has a lot more vertical opportunities than mostly horizontal Texas.


Above I am at the Salt River Canyon bottom, and those are those people we saw from the overlook, posing for photos. They were taking a lot of photos. Above them, on the canyon wall, that brown streak slicing diagonal is the road we had been rolling on a few minutes prior. The route from the canyon bottom up the other side looked real treacherous with multiple switchbacks.

When I was on the pedestrian bridge a guy asked me to take a photo of him and his family. I told the guy that this canyon was a total surprise to me, that I wondered why I had never heard of it. Told him it was far more impressive to me than the famous Million Dollar Highway one drives when heading north from Silverton, Colorado. Or the Highway to the Sun in Glacier National Park.

The only road I recollect driving on which was more adventurous than this Salt River Canyon drive is the Moki Dugway in Utah.

The Moki Dugway is a relatively short one way, unpaved descent. The Salt River Canyon descent and ascent was many miles long.

Above is a look from the Salt River Canyon bottom up at those aforementioned bridges. The closest one is the old bridge turned to pedestrian bridge.

Both bridges were built over water. And I suspect the construction took way less than four years. People in Fort Worth know to what I refer.

I am sort of in recovery mode now that I am settled in my new abode. Figuring out how to operate the kitchen last night was a different type of adventure from treacherous driving.

I have no clue what we are doing today. Might go see Spencer Jack and Hank F's grandpa, also known as my little brother...

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Flash Flooding Lightning Striking Windy Ride To Socorro New Mexico

The morning did not start well. Somehow on Saturday I developed the delusion that the end of Daylight Savings Time was to happen today..

And so Saturday I set all my clocks back an hour.

This morning I found out I was wrong when my phone and computer reported what I thought at the time was the wrong time.

This delusion resulted in getting out of town an hour later than I had planned.

Hours of thunder booming during the night made for a tired morning. I did not look forward to a long drive.

And then, just a few miles in, on Highway 287, past Iowa Park, before the Vernon exit on to 60 a flash flood covered the road. I did not realize this had happened til a truck ahead of me hit the water, causing a giant plume. I slammed the brakes, and then slowly made it though the water. A car had flown off the road heading the other direction, landing sideways in the flood. I hope no one was hurt.

Rain poured down, super heavy at times, all the way to New Mexico. Only a few miles were relatively dry. And then, deep into New Mexico, prior to Mountainair, on 60, all hell broke loose. Lightning was striking, thunder booming. I followed a big truck leading a caravan of fellow travelers traveling at a snail pace.

Eventually, about the time we reached scenic Mountainair, the clouds lifted, making for a dry descent into the Rio Grande Valley, where the Rio Grande was a tiny trickle when we crossed it.

Getting on I-25 and heading south was a relief, particularly after stopping at the cool rest area you see above. I have seen some interesting rest areas, in various resting places. This one is easily in the Top Ten.

That is Big Ed you see walking the boardwalk in the aforementioned rest area. Today was the first time Big Ed has seen a mountain since 2002.

Tomorrow we should arrive by mid afternoon in the Chandler/Sun Lakes zone of Arizona. I am hoping for sunshine and no flooding issues....

Saturday, October 6, 2018

Final Wichita Falls Bike Ride Before Arizona Mountain Climbing

On this first Saturday of the 2018 version of October the outer world at my current location is a bit dark and cloudy.

With about an hour to go before noon I opted to exit my abode so as to roll my bike wheels one more time before exiting Texas tomorrow.

In the photo documentation we are on the Circle Trail looking south over my handlebars.

Rain and thunderstorms are in today's forecast. So far I have felt no drippage, nor heard any booms.

Last night I came to my final decision as to the route for the roadtrip to Arizona. A short distance on 287 to 70, then 60 all the way to the Phoenix zone.

When I was younger I greatly enjoyed long roadtrips. Thousands of miles never vexed me. I remember the first time I saw Texas was part of a month long multi-thousand mile roadtrip. That was the summer the whole world was worried regarding who shot J.R. I did not visit Southfork at that point in time.

Now that I am semi-elderly I am not as fond of the roadtrip concept. I am sort of looking forward to doing some actual mountain type hiking in Arizona. Maybe Camelback Mountain. Maybe Piestewa Peak. Maybe South Mountain.

Or it may be too HOT with a lot of pool time being more appealing than mountain hiking.

Nurse Canecracker, aka Lil' Miss Linda, will be arriving on the 16th.

We ordered a new transport chair for my mom. Nurse Canecracker is not yet fully recovered from getting badly injured from an encounter with a car on the streets of Mount Vernon. Big Ed may come in handy if Nurse Canecracker wants to avail herself of using one of the transport chairs.

If I remember right the trail up Piestewa Peak is paved. Maybe we will be able to push both mom and Nurse Canecracker to the Piestewa Peak summit....

Friday, October 5, 2018

Will There Ever Be An All-Out Sprint To Finish Anything In Fort Worth?

Yesterday we took a Closer Look At Fort Worth Losing Federal Funding For America's Biggest Boondoggle.

Taking a closer look was prompted by two days in a row where the Fort Worth Star-Telegram published what seemed to me to be bizarre propaganda pieces about the Trinity River Central City Uptown Panther Island District Vision, more commonly known as America's Biggest Boondoggle.

And now today, a third bizarre piece of Star-Telegram propaganda.

Day One we had Fort Worth’s $1B Panther Island project quietly cut from 2018 federal budget.

Day Two followed with Panther Island will move ‘full steam ahead’ despite funding slowdown, proponent vows.

And now on Day Three of this propaganda onslaught the Star-Telegram asks Can Panther Island work without federal funds? Maybe, if Fort Worth plays the long game.

Plays a long game? Wasn't the so-called Panther Island project originally touted as a vitally needed flood control and economic development scheme by those conning the public as to the project's supposed worth? And yet this vitally needed project has been limping along, under funded for most of this century, with little to show for the effort, and a lot of money literally down the drain.

And now we are looking at playing a long game?

The absurdity of this Fort Worth boondoggle, and the inept way the town's supposed newspaper of record covers the absurdity, struck me this morning whilst reading a Seattle Times article about An all-out sprint to demolish Alaskan Way Viaduct in 2019.

Around the same time as Fort Worth's blind vision began looking at nothing, as in near the start of the current century, Seattle's Alaskan Way Viaduct was damaged by an earthquake. Discussions ensued as to how to get rid of the Viaduct, and with what to replace it.

As is the Seattle Way, it took a lot of discussing to come up with a plan. Eventually it was decided to replace the Viaduct with a tunnel. The project was engineered, and funding secured.

And no local politician's son was put in charge.

Around the same time as Fort Worth had a TNT explosion to mark the start of construction of the town's three simple little bridges being built over dry land to connect the Fort Worth mainland to an imaginary island, the world's biggest tunnel boring machine, nicknamed Bertha, began its boring course under downtown Seattle.

Bertha bored for a thousand feet, or so, and then hit a chunk of steel which severely damaged her. Fixing Bertha took about a year. The process was fully transparent, with a live camera aimed at the operation 24/7.

A year after Fort Worth's TNT explosion marking the start of bridge construction locals began wondering why nothing was happening on the bridge building locations. The local newspaper of record did no reporting as to what was causing the delay. There was, and continues to be, ZERO transparency as to what the problems are with these bridges.

And now, four years after that TNT explosion and Bertha began boring, Bertha has long finished her boring, the roadways have been installed in the new tunnel. And once the tunnel opens for traffic the Alaskan Way Viaduct can finally come down.

That is expected to be happening in the first four months of 2019.

Read the Seattle Times article about An all-out sprint to demolish Alaskan Way Viaduct in 2019.and make note of how different this article is from that which you may read in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram about anything to do with America's Biggest Boondoggle, particularly the slow motion bridge construction.

Notice at the end of the Seattle Times article the hundreds of comments, to an article which was only published this morning. Such is the case over and over again with articles in the Seattle Times.

Intelligent debate with opinions all over the political spectrum.

Meanwhile in a Star-Telegram article there are rarely comments. When there would seem to be so much which is comment worthy. Is this lack of comments because the Star-Telegram has few readers? Or are their readers simply shy about expressing themselves?

Very perplexing.

The price tag for the entire Alaskan Way Viaduct removal, replacement tunnel, waterfront rebuild and other parts of the project came with a multiple billion dollar price tag. Fully funded. With the project on track to completion, even after a major hiccup. And Seattle will be reaping HUGE benefits from the investment, with the town's already busy waterfront reinvigorated by its new connection to downtown with the removal of the Alaskan Way Viaduct obstruction.

Meanwhile in Fort Worth, currently, those pretending to be in charge, indicate the vitally needed Trinity River Vision flood control and economic development scheme may come to fruition in 2028.

Maybe.

If the federal government is foolish enough to throw some more money down the Fort Worth drain....

Thursday, October 4, 2018

Closer Look At Fort Worth Losing Federal Funding For America's Biggest Boondoggle

Yesterday I wondered what With Federal Funding Cut Will Fort Worth Finally End America's Biggest Boondoggle?

Yesterday's wondering was prompted by two Fort Worth Star-Telegram articles and multiple comments on Facebook.

At the end of yesterday's wondering mention was made of the possibility that I might get around to going through those two tiresome Star-Telegram articles, gleaning out what glares and commenting.

And, so let us start with the first of those two articles and go through them to the bitter end...

Article #1 told us Fort Worth’s $1B Panther Island project quietly cut from 2018 federal budget. Let's see what we were told in that propaganda piece...

WASHINGTON 
Fort Worth’s behind-schedule $1.16 billion plan to re-route the Trinity River is no longer considered a top contender for federal funding — and the Army Corps of Engineers has quietly excluded the project from its budget.

The omission is particularly glaring for Fort Worth Rep. Kay Granger, a senior member of Congress’s powerful spending committee whose son, J.D. Granger, serves as the project’s executive director.

Granger declined to be interviewed by the Star-Telegram about the project on Capitol Hill last week. Her office also declined to provide comment for the story. She is vying for her party’s top spot on the House appropriations committee next year.
________________

So, what a shocker, Fort Worth Congresswoman and leader of the Granger Gang, Kay Granger, declined to provide a comment regarding this Fort Worth debacle for which she is largely at fault for helping cause. That and finagling to have her unqualified son installed as the project's executive director. Kay is vying for her party's top appropriations committee spot next year? Kay is also vying for re-election. If the voters of Fort Worth were not largely a flock of mindless sheep Kay would not be re-elected next month.

Moving on...

“The administration does not consider the [Panther Island] project to be policy compliant for budgeting because of the lack of an economic analysis,” said Corps spokesman Eugene Pawlik. “The project did not receive fiscal 2018 Civil Works funding and is not in the president’s fiscal 2019 Civil Works budget.”

The Army Corps “develops the work plans in accordance with the congressional guidance and generally prioritizes projects based on their expected economic, life-saving and environmental benefits to the nation,” Pawlik said. “Before the work plans are finalized and presented to Congress, they undergo policy review within the administration.”
_______________

Fort Worth's infamous boondoggle is not considered to be policy compliant because of a lack of an economic analysis?

How many people over how many years have been saying, over and over again, that this inept project is not properly designed, not properly engineered, and certainly not properly implemented? The Trinity River Vision has been limping along for most of this century. The last four years have seen the inept attempt to build three simple little bridges over dry land to connect the Fort Worth mainland to an imaginary island. All it takes is a minimum iota of common sense to see that this particular Fort Worth vision is blind.

Moving on again...

So far the Army Corps has contributed $61.9 million to the project, also called the Trinity River Vision. It aims to rebuild the aging 1950s West Fork levees downtown and, in the process straighten the river channel and move it about 10 blocks north.
_______________

The project also called the Trinity River Vision? That was what the vision was originally called before other names were added, with the most recent being the bizarre Panther Island District, where there is no island and never will be an actual island of the reality based sort.

Rebuild the aging levees built in the 1950s? Aging levees which have prevented any flooding in the area they are protecting ever since. While there are other areas of Fort Worth which do flood regularly, often with deadly results.

Again, moving on...

The final product will also create a San Antonio-style riverwalk and 800-acre scenic “island” north of downtown, goals that have long angered conservatives both locally and nationally.
________________

There has never been anything documenting how this inept project would in any way resemble San Antonio's iconic Riverwalk. Let alone somehow turn an industrial wasteland into something scenic.

These imaginary goals have long angered conservatives, both locally and nationally?

Really?

Only conservatives have found those imaginary goals to be aggravating? I'm just about dead opposite of being conservative. I know many others just as non-conservative as I am who think the Trinity River Central City Uptown Panther Island District Vision has long been a corrupt, inept, possibly criminal fraud perpetrated without actual voter approval, creating an embarrassment for Fort Worth which has been boondoggling along for years and will likely linger for years to come.

Skipping ahead past a few paragraphs...

Last week Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price flew to Washington to attend an economic summit at the White House, and discussed the Panther Island project with Trump’s government relations officials.

“We mentioned that it was a critical project for us and we would love to have the funding secured for it,” Price told the Star-Telegram after the summit.
______________

What a mayor! She mentioned America's Biggest Boondoggle is a critical project for Fort Worth and that Fort Worth would love to have the funding secured for it.

How about Betsy do what mayors in towns wearing their BIG CITY pants do? As in design a project, sell that project to the public. And then have the public vote to fund the project. You know, this should be such an easy sell, what with the Trinity River Vision being a vitally needed flood control and economic development scheme. Yet somehow never vitally needed to a level sufficient to ask voters to support the project.  Until last May, when a fraudulently worded ballot measure asked voters to approve a quarter billion bucks for flood control and drainage. Which later boondoggle officials baldfacedly touted this vote as both approval of America's Biggest Boondoggle and that the funds would go to the Panther Island Project. Not flood control and drainage.

Moving on the final three paragraphs in this article, and they are doozies...

The project’s planners, who did not publicize the omission when it was announced in July, say they’ve used local funds to keep the project on pace with their previously set schedule. They say the flood control project remains a public safety concern for Fort Worth, and they don’t plan to scale back its scope.

“We’ve been able to continue moving forward with the current schedule,” said TRV spokesman Matt Oliver, who pointed to a $250 million bond approved by voters earlier this year by voters in the Fort Worth-based Tarrant Regional Water District.

“We have the local money in hand… we have the schedule based on the situation currently, so if you have times where a particular part of that schedule might speed up or a particular part of that schedule might slow down, that’s something we’ve never shied away from,” said Oliver.
________________

Okay, in these three paragraphs we learn the Boondoggle's planners did not publicize losing the federal funds, two months after that fraudulent May vote. But they have the funds to keep the project on pace with their schedule?

What?

There never has been a project timeline schedule.

Never.

 Little happens year after year. Bridges began construction four years ago with an astonishing four year project timeline, and now, four years later, those bridges are nowhere near anything anyone could drive over, and the current completion date has been shoved to sometime in 2020.

What bizarre idiotic hubris.

They say the project remains a public safety concern for Fort Worth, and they won't scale back its scope? How many times do how many people have to tell these people there has been no flood safety concern in this area for well over a half century, due to existing flood control federal dollars have already paid for?

One of the beneficiaries of Trinity River Vision nepotism, Matt Oliver, claims they are able to continue moving forward with the current imaginary schedule due to that $250 million voters stuck in the boondoggler's hands, which voters thought was for flood control and drainage?

So, with that local money now fraudulently acquired, the boondogglers have themselves a schedule based on the current situation? Parts of which may speed up? Or slow down? Which is something they have never shied away from.

What idiotic nonsense. The Star-Telegram needs to import an actual investigative journalist. Or 60 Minutes needs to visit Fort Worth.

Part 2 Tomorrow, if I am not consumed by why bother ennui....

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

With Federal Funding Cut Will Fort Worth Finally End America's Biggest Boondoggle?

In a 24 hour time period the Fort Worth Star-Telegram has published two articles about that which has become America's Biggest Boondoggle, without making note of that fact, yet detailing such.

Yesterday's Fort Worth’s $1B Panther Island project quietly cut from 2018 federal budget revealed the not too shocking news that the Army Corps of Engineers has determined Fort Worth's boondoggle was not policy compliant due to the lack of an economic analysis.

Hence federal funding cut.

The Star-Telegram bears some blame for helping enable this ongoing travesty via participating in the year after year after year of absurd propaganda spewed by the Trinity River Central City Uptown Panther Island District Vision, the corrupt spawn of the Tarrant Regional Water District.

The Star-Telegram has yet to publish a single honest investigative investigation of the most glaring aspect of what has become America's Biggest Boondoggle, that being the three simple little bridges being built over dry land to connect the Fort Worth mainland to an imaginary island.

Construction of those three little bridges began four years ago, with an incredible four year project timeline to build three simple little bridges. Over dry land.

The Star-Telegram has not informed its readers regarding the details of the engineering mistakes and problems which have caused the bridge building delay.

The Star-Telegram has not editorialized anything along the line of someone, somewhere in the failing project needs to be held accountable.

Such as a demand for the firing of Kay Granger's boy, J.D., installed as Executive Director of what has become America's Biggest Boondoggle, paid around $200,000 a year, plus perks, to do a job for which he had zero qualifications.

In modern America this is known as nepotism, and is not allowed.

America's Biggest Boondoggle is rife with nepotism. How many of TRWD general manager Jim Oliver's relatives are in the TRWD or TRV's employ?

Regarding America's Biggest Boondoggle one of Jim Oliver's relatives is quoted in today's Panther Island will move ‘full steam ahead’ despite funding slowdown, proponent vows  Star-Telegram article...

Matt Oliver, Trinity River Vision spokesman, said work will still go on. “We’re going to keep moving, locally, full steam ahead,” Oliver said.

"Some of the money allocated in previous years has not been spent while other projects, like the three bridges currently under construction over dry land, are funded through the state", he said.

In May, voters passed a $250 million bond as part of the local commitment. The authority would have sought the bond regardless of federal dollars, Oliver said, and the money will still be used to fund front-end work such as design and the acquisition of land.

“The bond still going to local portions,” he said.

As part of flood control measures, work will continue on retention ponds in Gateway and Riverside parks. Those projects may not be visible to the public as part of downtown’s Panther Island, but Oliver said they’re crucial to the overall concept.

Work is expected to continue on the three bridges until about 2020, he said. At that point the Army Corps can begin digging a channel that will ultimately re-route the Trinity River and create a downtown island and urban lake.
________________

The quarter billion dollar bond, which the ballot, apparently fraudulently, said was for flood control and drainage issues, will be used for front-end work such as design and acquisition of land? And work on those pitiful bridges is expected to continue until "about" 2020? Six years after starting construction.

Has anyone seen any signs of construction of that apartment complex being built on the imaginary island? In 2017 J.D. Granger touted this incoming apartment complex as one of the signs of progress we would be seeing in 2018. Only a few months left in 2018. Is this still an imaginary apartment project not being built on the imaginary island? Or is construction underway, as Granger said it would be?

These two articles in the Star-Telegram contain multiple propaganda elements of the misrepresenting the facts sort. Is this by design? Or editors with memory issues?

In a followup blog post we will look at these two article's propaganda nonsense in detail. But right now I'm fed up with the whole thing and not in the mood to get into it any deeper at this particular moment in time...

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

America's Most Reviled Cuban Canadian Coming To Wichita Falls Tomorrow With Trump Jr.

The Cuban Canadian many Americans believe to be the creepiest Senator in the United States, he being Texas Senator Rafael Edwardo Cruz, who changed his name to "Ted" so as to influence apparently easily fooled Texans into thinking he was a good 'ol Anglo type Texan, is coming to Wichita Falls tomorrow, around 3 in the afternoon.

Rafael will be in Wichita Falls with the eldest son of the man who informed America that Cruz's papa was in Dallas in November of 1963 murdering President John F. Kennedy.

Yes, that's right, Rafael "Ted" Cruz is coming to town with Donald Trump Jr. to rally Cruz kool-aiders at some venue in the MPEC in downtown Wichita Falls. (Those four MPEC initials stand for Multi-Purpose Event Center).

One has to have an entry ticket to attend this event. As of this morning around 900 had requested tickets. The venue holds 1000.

There are a lot of intelligent, well-informed, decent minded, creepiness averse Wichita Falls natives who have stuck BETO signs on their yards and vehicles in support of the man America hopes kicks Cruz out of the senate, Robert Francis "Beto" O'Rourke.

A cadre of BETO supporters is assembling at the local Democrat Party Headquarters on Kemp Boulevard today in order to make signs to hold whilst assembling outside the MPEC venue where Cruz will be spewing his creepy nonsense, along with equally greasy, Trump Jr.

I have been asked to attend this BETO counter rally. I declined the invite. I don't think it is a good idea, this BETO counter rally, as such would seem to have multiple ways of going in a sideways direction wreaking unpleasantness.

Anyway, that meme you see at the top really does nail the Cruz hypocrisy---

AMERICA
The only country where a Canadian Latino can reinvent himself
as an immigrant-hating southern white supremacist....

Monday, October 1, 2018

Beto Willie Rally Recovery With Wichita Falls Sikes Lake

It's Monday.

I am almost recovered from Friday's Beto O'Rourke Willie Nelson Rally in Austin.

Biggest political rally to take place this year in America. I read somewhere it was way back in 2008, at an Obama rally, which drew more people than Friday's Beto Event.

I remember the time previous to the Beto Rally where I suffered a claustrophobic panic attack due to being crammed in close space with too many people.

Way back in 1986 at Expo 86 in Vancouver, B.C., pushed like sardines in a crush of humans making for the exits at closing time. I regularly have a nightmare based on that crushing 1986 experience. I have yet to have a Beto Rally nightmare.

Before I change the subject I feel compelled to say attending a Beto Rally gives one hope for America. And Texas. That truth, justice, kindness and decency are on the march across America. I am likely characteristically being overly optimistic, which is my nature, just like Brett Kavanaugh, always seeing the beer keg as half full.

Anyway...

A week from today, if all goes according to schedule I will be driving on Highway 60, somewhere between Socorro, New Mexico and Phoenix, Arizona.

I am not too fondly looking forward to this road trip to the west. The previous road trip to Arizona, in July of 2017, was just a little traumatic.

This morning I felt the need to get some soothing endorphins via mild aerobic stimulation.


So, I rolled my bike to Midwestern State University to enjoy the scenic serenity of the inland sea known as Sikes Lake. As you can see, above, clouds added to the scenery.

Hundreds of geese, ducks and swans were also enjoying the scenic serenity.

And then a testing of the tornado sirens erupted, sending the flocks of geese, ducks, swans, and me, into startled panic mode. 

Unlike the geese, ducks and swans I did not take flight. Instead I came to a quick halt.

I return from Arizona two days before Halloween. And then before you know it the dreaded Holiday Season will be in full swing, with Thanksgiving on the horizon, with, hopefully, a Big Blue Wave among that for which we can all be thankful...

Saturday, September 29, 2018

Gloomy Lake Wichita Bike Ride With Dozens Of Miniature Footballers

This second Saturday of the 2018 version of Fall, I followed my handlebars on the Circle Trail to Lake Wichita where I stopped for a minute or two to take the photo you see here.

This morning, when this bike ride took place, the outer world was a little gloomy, gray and sort of foggy.

But calm.

Nary a wave rippling Lake Wichita.

That little bump in the middle right is the Mount Wichita pseudo volcano, not yet snowcapped.

It's probably a bit early in the snowcapping season to expect the top of Mount Wichita to be white.

When I exit the top of Lake Wichita Dam I leave the paved Circle Trail for a gravel trail which travels the perimeter of Lake Wichita Park.

Lake Wichita Park has multiple play fields of the baseball, soccer and football sort. Play a disc golf course. And a rocket launch pad, along with a radio controlled model airplane tarmac. Oh, and there is a BIG dog park.

Usually I only see a few vehicles parked in the large Lake Wichita Park parking lots. Such was not the case today.

As soon as the first parking lot came into view I saw it was full. And then the gravel trail reached the west side of the park. There I soon found myself dodging vehicles driving on the gravel trail so as to find a place to park on the grass.

What fresh hell is this I rolled and wondered? I soon had my answer....



Little kids in football uniforms playing football. Dozens upon dozens of helmeted padded kids, along with hundreds upon hundreds of others watching the dozens upon dozens of helmeted padded kids playing football.

I thought due to the dangers now known to exist that little kids playing football was no longer something that happened. Clearly I was misinformed on this issue.

I sort of remember when I was in grade school football was played. But we had no pads, uniforms or helmets. Seems like it was something called tag or touch football. I don't think tackling was allowed. This was decades ago, way back in the previous century.

It takes a long time, I guess, sometimes decades, for progress to make its way from the west or east coast to the center of the country. Yeah, that must be the explanation for those dozens upon dozens of helmeted padded kids I saw today...

Thursday, September 27, 2018

Spencer Jack's Happy Henry Birthday Make Cousins Great Again

Yesterday's trek to the Dallas metro zone was a wild wind driven rainy ride.

Usually that drive is done at a speed above the 75 mph speed limit.

Yesterday many miles of that drive were speeding around 25 mph under the speed limit.

Yet somehow I arrived at my eventual destination ten minutes early.

Yesterday was my little brother Jake's birthday. I knew Jake was in Washington in anticipation of the arrival of his second grandson.

Whilst I was in the DFW zone I texted message Jake a "Happy Birthday" and asked "Are you a grandpa for the second time yet?"

Jake texted back, "Yes. Best birthday present ever."

When I made it back to my home location I anticipated I would likely be seeing incoming email photo documentation documenting the arrival of the newest Jones boy.

I anticipated accurately, as you can see via the photo above.

That would be Spencer Jack's dad, Jason on the left, with Spencer Jack's Uncle Joey holding his freshly first born, Henry.

The only verbiage in that incoming photo was...

Henry Jones (born 9:15am on 9/26).

It seems not all that long ago I drove south from Bellingham, Washington to United General Hospital, located halfway between my old hometown of Burlington and Sedro-Woolley, to meet Spencer Jack's Uncle Joey for the first time, That was way back in the last century, in the early 1980s. I can not remember the specific year. But the month was November.

Yesterday whilst in the DFW zone, I called Spencer Jack's Aunt Jasmine. During the course of that conversation when the subject of our anticipated incoming Grand Nephew ( I am not sure Grand Nephew is the correct relative nomenclature) I asked what hospital the birthing was taking place in, United General or Skagit Valley Hospital in Mount Vernon?

Jasmine did not know, for sure, but thought the blessed event was likely taking place at United General.

Both Skagit Valley hospitals are about the same distance from Spencer Jack's Uncle Joey and Aunt Monique's Clear Lake home location.

Adjusting for the time zone differential, I think Henry's 9:15am Pacific birth time I am guessing Henry was born during the time frame whilst Henry's Aunt Jasmine and I were talking about it.

After I was horizontal last night the photo you see here of Spencer Jack arrived in my email inbox.

As you can see, Spencer Jack is in his school uniform. I suspect this indicates Spencer Jack got out of school early so as to be at the hospital to meet his incoming cousin Henry.

As you can also see, Spencer Jack has altered his least favorite baseball cap to make note of the arrival of his first cousin, with the cap now messaging "Make Cousins Great Again".

HAPPY BIRTHDAY HENRY!

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Fort Worth Weekly Sees Trinity River Vision Sleight Of Hand

That which you see here showed up this morning in my email inbox, sent by Elsie Hotpepper.

Every year Fort Worth's Fort Worth Weekly does a Best of This, That or the Other Thing edition.

Ever since I have been exposed to this annual FW Weekly edition I have been pretty much non-plussed by that which is deemed to be the Best of This, That or the Other Thing.

Basically, near  as I can tell, this annual FW Weekly edition is an advertisement selling scheme.

But, let's look at this excerpt from this year's FW Weekly Best  of 2018 edition which Elsie Hotpepper sent our way.

In the People & Places section of the Best of 2018 section, under the heading of Sleight of Hand...

Critic's choice: Fort Worth and Tarrant Regional Water District

We would all be well advised to not play poker with Fort Worth officials and Tarrant Regional Water District personnel. That bunch is slicker than a snake in a bucket of snot. A May 5 election for a bond referendum described the work as "flood Control". But approval meant the bond money would go toward the Trinity River Vision plan, now referred to as Panther Island, which is an area that hasn't flooded since the 1940s. Oh, well. What's a little semantics worth? Um, how does $250 million dollars sound?
____________________

Okay, I guess I find it admirable Fort Worth Weekly has gotten around to pointing out the fraudulent absurdity of that May 5 election.

This was not the first time I have witnessed what seems to be a fraudulent Fort Worth election. Often involving the TRWD.

I have blogged multiple times about the absurdity of the May 5 fraudulent ballot verbiage, as have others.

But, such is the Fort Worth Way, that nothing happens of a criminal investigation sort. Noises may be made in that direction, but nothing ever happens which holds the perpetrators of the fraud accountable.

I feel I must point out one erroneous element in the FW Weekly information. That being the area being addressed by this un-needed flood control fraud has not flooded since the 1950s, not the 1940s. Still well over half a century with no flood in this area which is not in need of any additional, or improved flood control.

The funds spent so far on what has become America's Biggest Boondoggle is likely wasted, literally flushed down a drain, on a boondoggle which likely will never come to fruition. Will those bridges being built in slow motion over dry land to connect the Fort Worth mainland to an imaginary island ever get finished? Will the ditch under those bridges ever get dug? Will the diversion dam ever get built to divert the Trinity River into that ditch?

Money wasted.

Whilst nothing is done to mitigate the chronic flooding in Fort Worth's disastrous West 7th Avenue area of bad urban planning.

Or the even worse urban planning which has turned deadly in East Fort Worth, with badly engineered housing developments causing massive flooding along Randol Mill Road, due to trees being removed on the hills above Randol Mill, roads added, and nothing done to mitigate the increased water flowing downhill.

Mary Kelleher is spearheading an effort to bring legal action against the City of Fort Worth, and the other perpetrators of this criminally dangerous destructive development.

Meanwhile, that which has become America's Biggest Boondoggle, the Trinity River Central City Uptown Panther Island District Vision, dawdles along, sucking up money, with little to show for the effort, after boondoggling along for most of this century.

Well, there has been the lining of the Granger Gang's pockets, what with Fort Worth Congresswoman Kay Granger's inept son, J.D., taking in a couple hundred thousand bucks a year, plus perks, for a job for which, it is now totally obvious to anyone paying attention, he is totally unqualified.

And yet the flock of sheep who vote in Kay Granger's district are likely going to return this woman to Congress.

Sad.

Monday, September 24, 2018

Wichita Bluffs Hiking Training For Arizona Mountain Trails

Tired of being semi-housebound due to day after day of rain, on this first Monday of Fall I opted to roll my mechanized wheels to the Wichita Bluff Nature Area to take myself on a cloudy hike to look over the over look looking over the Wichita River, currently running a lot of extra reddish water.

As you can see the sky above the Wichita Bluff Nature Area was looking a bit threatening when I walked the bluffs today.

But the only drippage dripped after I was back in my vehicle, and thus nothing wet dripped directly on me.

Today's bluff hiking was some much needed tune up training for the Arizona hiking which will be taking place next month.

I plan on hiking all over Papago Park with Nurse Canecracker and Big Ed. Well, at least to the Hole in the Rock.

And then there are the miles of mountain trails on Phoenix's South Mountain in Phoenix's South Mountain Park. The biggest urban park in America..

I will not be taking my mountain bike with me to Arizona, and so I won't be mountain biking the South Mountain mountain bike trails. I do not think I would do that even if I brought my bike with me.

I have seen those trails, and they look scary, beyond my expertise level...

Saturday, September 22, 2018

Fishing Holliday Creek Rapids With Wichita Falls Big Bird

On this first Saturday of the 2018 version of autumn, also known as fall, rain has been falling almost nonstop for around 24 hours.

But, coming up on noon the deluging slowed to slow drizzle mode long enough to allow a bumbershoot-free short walk on the Circle Trail to check out the current status of Holliday Creek.

Well.

As you can see, Holliday Creek is currently moving enough water to go into pseudo rapids mode at the location you see above, where a big bird, maybe of the egret sort, is perched on a rock, likely hoping a salmon might pass by.

I did not have the heart to tell the big bird that salmon was not possible, that the best it might hope for was maybe a bass or catfish.

A couple days ago I saw a big fish of some unidentified sort leap out of Sikes Lake, making a big splash, which startled the nearby floating goose brigade.

I assume the fish one catches in Lake Wichita, Sikes Lake and Holliday Creek is safe to eat. I have seen no signs warning of the danger of doing such, of the sort I saw warning possible fish eaters of the dangers of what they might catch in Fort Worth waterways, such as the Trinity River and Fosdick Lake in Oakland Lake Park.

I don't remember if part of the currently cloudy Fort Worth Trinity River Vision was to see water clean enough to grow fish safe enough to eat. I suspect not...

Friday, September 21, 2018

Ahead Of Tonight's Debate BETO Signs Sprouting Like Mushrooms In Wichita Falls

Rain has been falling off and on at various levels since an hour or two before last night's setting of the sun.

This morning's short drive to ALDI went through multiple instances of plowing past areas where the street is flooded.

Upon my return to my abode I decided to take a short walk under my favorite bumbershoot.

Eventually I came upon that which you see here, on Taft Boulevard, a BETO FOR U.S. SENATE sign under the sign of my neighborhood's favorite Attorney at Law.

Last week, or the week before, on Facebook, in response to someone commenting on the HUGE number of BETO signs being seen in that person's particular DFW neighborhoods, one of the worst cases I have experienced of the Dunning/Kruger Effect pompously informed us of Political Fact #2: Signs do not Vote.

I did not recollect anyone suggesting that signs were able to vote. I did recollect someone suggesting the number of BETO signs is reflective of the BETO phenomenon which has made a lot of Texans feel optimistic some semblance of sanity may be returning to their state.

That same pompous Dunning/Kruger-ite also opined that BETO was scared to debate Cruz, after BETO rejected Cruz's insistence on his side controlling all aspects of the debates, as in time, subject, moderator, location. With Cruz's plan being for all debates to be on Friday night, when many Texans go to high school football games.

BETO wanted something like six debates, at least one in Spanish, and on various days, not just Friday.

It seemed to anyone sensible that it was Cruz who was (is) afraid of debating BETO.

And then a debate agreement was reached. With the first debate taking place tonight. I have not yet decided if I will watch the spectacle at the Democrat Party headquarters debate party location on Kemp, or watch it at home, in peace, on my private television viewing device.

Creepy Cruz makes most Americans, and many Texans, skin crawl. Cruz contrasted directly with All American Texan BETO tonight is going to be a pleasant experience for many, or so I hope.

I have my popcorn ready to pop...

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Looking Forward To My New Arizona Home Location With Big Ed & Miss Linda

What you are looking at here is a location I am sort of looking forward to being at next month.

The backyard of my Arizona abode.

This is semi-conveniently located about a mile from my dear maternal parental unit.

Nurse Canecracker, also known as Lil' Miss Linda, called this morning from Newport on the Oregon coast confirming her arrival time in Phoenix on October 16.

I have never picked any one up at Sky Harbor Airport. I have always been the recipient of the pickup, never the picker upper. Thus I have paid zero attention to the process, other than slightly paying attention when I have been dropped off at the airport.

I am sure it will all work out.

I am driving to Arizona this time. After last summer's driving to Arizona debacle I sort of indicated I would not do such a thing again. But, you know how time changes ones attitude.

That and this time I will not be driving solo.

Big Ed is coming along. This will be the first time Big Ed has been back to modern America since a 2002 visit up to Washington. I have told Big Ed to brace himself for some culture shock. That and a lot of visits to various McDonald's.

This morning Elsie Hotpepper was lamenting wishing she was still on vacation at some beach zone in semi-modern America. I told Elsie she should come to Arizona next month and stay in my temporary abode. And that she could check out what Gilbert has done to make their downtown a cool location, which might give Elsie some ideas as to what could be done to fix the rundown downtown of Elsie's hometown of Bug Tussle, Texas.

I am looking forward to driving Big Ed and Nurse Canecracker up South Mountain. That and the drive to Tortilla Flats. And wandering around Scottsdale and Tempe. I am hoping to get my mom an upgrade of her rolling chair device so as to facilitate easily exploring various locations.

Since my last visit apparently my mom had learned to enjoy getting rolled around the HUGE Ak Chin Casino in Maricopa.

Currently a Maricopa visit is scheduled for October 12, with a casino stop and a lunch at Penny's Maricopa McDonald's....

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Got Water In Shadow Of Mount Wichita

I rolled by a couple new half mile markers today on the Circle Trail before I came to the MILE 13.5 marker in the shadow of Mount Wichita.

Well, not actually in the shadow.

That would only happen if somehow the sun managed to move itself a bit to the north of the mountain, which I do not think it does, even at the highest point of the solstice.

Speaking of which, summer is just about done for the year, with the autumnal equinox arriving in a few days, also known as the start of fall.

And then in three short months the winter solstice arrives. Is that what it's called? I'm drawing a blank trying to draw that information, for certain, from my ever more crowded old-fashioned cranium located date storage device.

Just Googled using my handy new-fashioned data retrieval device and have confirmed December 21 is the winter solstice, as in the start of winter.

Back to summer, as in today, as you can see Mount Wichita has greened up just in time for fall, losing its dire drab drought inflicted summer coloring with an early reveal of its fall foliage.

Come winter I am hoping we get a good snow pack this year, thus allowing the chair lifts to operate on Mount Wichita.

I can not remember the last time I went skiing, and Google is of no use to me in retrieving that particular data.

I almost forgot to mention, the helpful message on the MILE 13.5 marker is...

"GOT Water?"

and...

"Don't forget to stop long enough to drink plenty of water and stay hydrated."

Ironically, when I stopped at this marker, the first thing I did was reach for my water bottle, before reading the sign advising me to do so...

Monday, September 17, 2018

Improving Posture With Multiple Beto's Before Cruz Yard Sign Dog Chase

This morning I opted to roll north on the Circle Trail. At the north end of Hamilton Park I came upon another of those new half mile Circle Trail markers.

Each with its own inspirational message.

At the MILE 7.5 marker mark we learn...

"More than Cardio".

and...

"Cycling can help improve posture and coordination".

I know I feel more coordinated after a bike ride. I do not know if I make note of any posture improvement.

On a previous posting about the Circle Trail half mile markers Betty Jo Bouvier opined "I think these 'helpful' signs would annoy me more than help me...and I don't have a dog"

Betty Jo's comment related directly to the half mile marker which advised that walking ones dog helps with the dog's digestion.

I think I can understand Miss Bouvier's aversion to the messages on these signs. They do seem borderline Orwellian. Big Brother spewing pithy slogans to the minions advising them regarding what might be beneficial to them.

Even though I think I may understand Betty Jo's aversion I don't share in it, too much. I find the signs slightly amusing. And a good reason to stop for a water break when I see a new one of the half mile markers.

My mine excitement of the day was seeing seven new BETO yards signs on the route I rolled today. For a total of 11 BETO signs on that route, as opposed to two Creepy CRUZ yard signs.

At the location of one of the two Creepy Cruz yard signs two large dogs took off after me, barking viciously and nipping at my heels as my feet spun the pedals at high speed. The dog chase lasted about a block.

Today's Creepy Cruz vicious dog attack marks the first time I have had myself any sort of dog incident in Wichita Falls whilst riding my bike.

I do not like getting chased by dogs whilst riding my bike....

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Wichita Falls Musical Pig Bike Encounter On MSU Campus

On this Ides of September Sunday I opted to get myself some much needed endorphins via the rolling my bike's wheels method.

Sunday is my favorite day to roll around Sikes Lake and then cross Midwestern Boulevard to the Midwestern State University campus to do some more rolling on the miles of paved trails, also known as sidewalks.

Today the MSU campus rolling had musical accompaniment in the form of loud rock music blasting from a source located somewhere on the soccer fields. I rather enjoyed the bike riding soundtrack, particularly Eye of the Tiger and Maroon 5's Sugar.

On Sunday there are few students on the MSU sidewalks, thus making for obstacle free biking.

That was the case today until I came upon the pig you see above, which caused my handlebars to come to an abrupt halt.

The type of horse known as a Mustang is the MSU mascot. I do not know if a Pig is the MSU sub-mascot. Or if there is such a thing as a sub-mascot.

What I do know is this pig is well behaved, letting me peacefully pass with no objections.

I came upon the MSU Pig on the north side of the Clark Student Center. I believe there is a student cafeteria feeding zone inside the Clark Student Center. I do not know if bacon is a popular menu item....

Saturday, September 15, 2018

Cloudy Cool Humid Scenic Wichita Bluff Nature Area Saturday Hike

Clouds, a not too hot temperature, and humidity, seemed to make for a combo of factors which might possibly result in a pleasant Saturday hike in my favorite Wichita Falls hiking location, that being the Wichita Bluff Nature Area section of the Circle Trail.

I soon found I was correct in my pleasant assumption.

In the first photo you are looking from an overlook near the east entry to the Wichita Bluff Nature Area.

I tried to convince a fellow hiker to pose on that chunk of rock cantilevered out over the Wichita River, but my powers of persuasion were not sufficient to get the fellow hiker to do so. And so that photo opportunity was lost to me.

Above you are looking at another view from the same overlook where we looked over that cantilevered rock. As you can see the guard rail fencing on this section of the Circle Trail is quite substantial. It appears to be made of galvanized steel.

Other sections of the Circle Trail have guard railing which is not quite so substantial. Such as that which tries to keep people from falling into Holliday Creek as they pass under Midwestern Boulevard. At that section the railing is made of wood, with sections missing.


If one is in need of shelter as one hikes the Wichita Bluff Nature Area, there are several covered areas such as you see above, where one can take refuge from a sudden downpour or lightning strikes or the blazing sun. None of which made an appearance today.

The last time I hiked the Circle Trail through the Wichita Bluff Nature Area I continued on, out of the Nature Area, to the new section of trail under construction. Today I did not do so, partly due to what you see below.


That and I did not want to go on a multi-mile hike today.

Since my last visit to this location yellow crime scene, I mean, caution tape has been added to the "Trail Closed Ahead" wooden barricade, with that yellow caution tape extending from the wooden barricade to bushes a short distance from the trail.

No scofflaws were in evidence ignoring the obstacle and caution tape. I suspect before the weekend is over a scofflaw or two will venture past the current barricade...

Friday, September 14, 2018

Today's Wichita Falls Circle Trail Advice Benefits My Dog's Constipated Digestive System

Yesterday whilst bike riding the Wichita Falls Circle trail I learned how to be, Living Your Best Wichita Falls Life At The 12.5 Mile Circle Trail Marker via new half mile signage being placed halfway between mile markers on the Circle Trail.

Today I headed the other direction on the Circle Trail, as in north, eventually leaving the trail in Hamilton Park to roll through the Wichita Falls Beverly Hills.

Before exiting the Circle Trail I came upon two of the new half mile markers.

Mile 9.5 was the first I came to, with its helpful advice being...

"Being Active Helps More Than Your Heart"

and...

"Regular activity helps you have stronger bones, muscles, joints and lowers the risk of osteoporosis."

And then the 8.5 Mile marker gave trail advice of a sort I had never seen before...

"Not Just For Humans"

and...

"Regular walks can be extremely beneficial to your pet's digestive system, and they can aid in relieving constipation."

I estimate there may around 15 of these half mile marker inspirational messages I have yet to roll by. It will likely take me a long, long time to see all of them.

If ever...