blank'/> Liberally Lean From The Land Of Dairy Queen: 7/20/08 - 7/27/08

7.26.2008

This Place . . .


. . . is new and across the street from 7-11 on Western Center Boulevard. Had lunch there.

Verdict: Good stuff. Pricey if you are expecting a casual grill. Heck of a lot nicer on the inside than you would think. Waiter was grumpy (but maybe he was having a bad day.)

Mugshots Of The Week

Here. Which includes a former Miss Kansas (before after the brawl.) Edit: Funny comment about the error. Hey, it's Saturday morning.

7.25.2008

Sheesh



Like I said, I've been looking at some old posts to prepare for the first leg of my Dying On Stage Tour. And then I came across this one from March of last year.

Denton's Goatman's Bridge

And how to get there along with other info. Which makes me wonder. Do we have any Wise County ghost legends? (Found on Dallas Observer blog.)

"The Last Lecture" Is Over


On September 18, 2007, computer science professor Randy Pausch stepped in front of an audience of 400 people at Carnegie Mellon University to deliver a last lecture called “Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams.” With slides of his CT scans beaming out to the audience, Randy told his audience about the cancer that is devouring his pancreas and that will claim his life in a matter of months. On the stage that day, Randy was youthful, energetic, handsome, often cheerfully, darkly funny. He seemed invincible. But this was a brief moment, as he himself acknowledged.

He died last night.

I had heard of the book and his speeches over the last couple of months, but I haven't gotten around to reading/listening to them. But on vacation I read a blurb about him in Time's "100 Most Influential People" issue.This line made me tear up:
After showing the walls of his childhood bedroom covered with his drawings of rocket ships and math equations, he tells his audience, "If your kids want to paint their bedrooms, as a favor to me, let 'em do it."
I read that quote several times that day as I sat next to a pool, sunglasses on. I pretended to be wiping sweat from my face as I really was drying my eyes. And I think I'm going to tear up again.

Random Friday Morning Thoughts


  1. I've always liked the hot-girl-in-a-tricked-up-cowboy hat look. You boys shouldn't be hatin' like you did yesterday.
  2. On Fox 4 this morning, they had a clip of a chimp almost getting a rifle away from a guy who was trying to track down the escaped animal. But the chimp dropped the gun. Man, there would be nothing funnier than a chimp on the run with a rifle. (Edit: You can see an extended one minute clip of the incident here and, if you are a good American who likes monkey humor, you've got to see it.)
  3. Obama in Germany yesterday was pretty impressive. He spoke to 200,000 which is more than Reagan ("tear down this wall") and Kennedy ("I am a Berliner") spoke to combined.
  4. In the meantime, McCain was in a German restaurant in Ohio. Really.
  5. Speaking of Germany, in elementary school we would have sauerkraut and wienies once a week for lunch. I hated those days.
  6. Whoever is running the Obama campaign knows what he is doing
  7. I'm seeing the new Batman movie tonight. I even bought tickets online beforehand - and I don't think I've ever done that before. And I'm seeing the film at a movie grille which is pretty much the only way I'll see a movie these days.
  8. It supposed to be 104 degrees on Sunday, and it's not even August yet.
  9. I saw a picture of Hugh Jackman on Yahoo Photo's and thought it was "Bud" from Married With Children. Bud was funny.
  10. I went to a dance club in Cancun. The whole experience deserves its own post - I'll work on that.
  11. Finding a login name and password to some sites (like the infuriating Dallas Morning News) here without having to register.
  12. Booker T. Washington is a cool name.
  13. It has been 4,227 daya since the last Cowboy playoff win.
  14. Fat/Neighbor chicks fighting. (Language warning.) I'm pretty sure that happens in Wise County every day - especially the last part of "I'm calling the police right now!"
  15. My multiple sources that extend to all parts of the county (including Boonesville) tell me that the lady that ran down the street light yesterday on the square was pretty old and pretty salty.
  16. Do I use parenthesis too much? (That just dawned on me.) Dooh!
  17. There was a minor controversy when President Bush was caught saying that the stock market had been "drunk" after he asked for the cameras to be turned off at a small gathering. That whole deal was silly and the guy that continued to roll video is a sorry individual.
  18. I filled up my gas powered weedeater with, uh, gas yesterday, got distracted for a second, and then came back and grabbed it off the ground causing gasoline to go all over the garage since I had forgotten to put the gas cap back on. Even though it dried up, I could still smell it this morning. I fear my garage blowing up today.
  19. The headline in the Dallas Morning News was that a teenager was sentenced pursuant to a plea bargain to 8 years in prison for causing a couple of 2 and 4 year old kids to smoke pot. The maximum was 10 years in prison so I was trying to figure out why he agreed to such a harsh plea bargain - then I saw it: "He also pleaded guilty to two charges of burglary of a habitation."
  20. The prosecutor in the case had the last name of "Davila." (That's a Bridgeport reference for you out-of-county folks.) Around here we pronounce is DA-ville-ah as opposed to da-VEELA)
  21. I wonder if anyone got drunk at the Reunion last night?
  22. Christmas is on Thursday this year.
  23. While looking through old blog posts yesterday, I found this one entitled "Luckiest Son In History Of Ever."
  24. Baylor booted its president yesterday and it was only then I learned that earlier this year he tried to get rid of the interlocking "B" and "U" symbol. He need to be fired for that. (Local note: Decatur born Joe Armes used to be on the Baylor Regents but I don't know if he still is.)
  25. I just heard the news of a noteworthy death. The story of the guy made me tear up a bit on vacation while reading a magazine. More on that in a minute.
  26. Another blog flashback: I was shocked at gas prices in May of 2007. Can we have that back?
  27. Edit: Shocking (at least to my civil libertarian bones) DWI courtroom story.
New edit: It's amazing how many lies are being told about Obama. In the comments, there have been a couple of references to him ignoring the troopers during his trip to the Middle East. To quote that great Oklahoma State coach rant from last year, "That ain't true!"

7.24.2008

Flashback


I've agreed* to speak to about 90 Decatur teachers about blogging or technology overall silliness so I was going through some old posts to use in a power point presentation. I did this last year and I was sweating like Albert Brooks in Broadcast News.

Anyway, in looking back over the old stuff I discovered:

First, I think I used to be funnier.

Secondly, I noted the other day that I couldn't remember the last time some one drowned in Lake Bridgeport. Then a commenter reminded me I had written about one last year. I came across the above photo that accompanied that post.

_______________
* I would like to point out that there is one person in that school district who is very persistent on me being there.

That's The Denton Mall . . . But, Wait, There's More


That "A" is the location of Imagination Station daycare. Somewhere else on the map is the location of a Hooter's restaurant. (It's somewhere along I-35 on the mall side, but that's all I know.)

So what do the two have in common? A wandering five year old.

Courthouse Square Carnage


Man, I just missed this. Apparently some lady zigged when she should have zagged and took out one of those fancy lightposts. But I'm not sure what all those bricks came from.

Edit: We have a good idea on how long it will take to replace.

7.23.2008

Random Thursday Morning Thoughts

  • That charisma factor between McCain and Obama is a no brainer.
  • Minimum wage has been boosted to $6.55 an hour beginning today. Incredible. That $262 a week before any deductions.
  • This heat is getting to me. And I work indoors.
  • I saw Wall-E last night. It was really pretty good. But has there been any reference at all to how the old school robot looks exactly like the one from the movie Short Circuit? Have I messed that? Edit: Someone has thought about it.
  • That back road behind Denny's and Braum's off of Western Center Boulevard now has a pothole in it that is as deep as . . . . well . . . a huge hole.
  • I really don't care for the manager of a restaurant coming around to see how my "dining experience" is going
  • I hate waking up, looking at the clock, and realizing the alarm is going off in five minutes
  • I'm not real sure who Sophie Monk is but I saw some beach pictures of her yesterday and they were-a-good
  • I keep a pump shotgun in my house. The reason? I had a buddy tell me once that the sound of putting a shell in the chamber was "universal" and that sound alone might cause an intruder to flee.
  • WBAP's Hal Jay was shocked today to learn that some of his co-workers had purchased things off of Ebay.
  • Paul Harvey is back on the radio. He doesn't sound dead at all.
  • Odd thing I did as a kid: I designated March 1st as "my holiday." No reason. I just wanted a day designated for me like any other holiday. I celebrated it for almost five years straight by drinking a coke or something. But I didn't tell anyone because I was afraid they would think it was weird.
  • I think I'd like being a long distance truck driver.
  • Forbes list of Top Five movie actor earnings last year: 1. Will Smith - $80 million, 2. Johnny Depp - $72 million, 3. Eddie Murphy - $55 million, 4. Mike Myers - $55 million, 5. Leonardo DiCaprio - $45 million. (How'd #3 get in there? Oh, yeah. He does that donkey voice in Shrek.)
  • The murder of two young girls in Oklahoma who went out for a walk gets very little press. And I don't understand why.
  • When I was a boy, I came across at least 10 head of cattle that had been slaughtered in a field near my house. (Near where Overland Drive is now.) They were all within 30 feet of one another and, stay with me here, their stomachs were ripped open. I told my dad who called the owner but I never really got an answer as to what had happened.
  • Has anyone else seen that NFL/Reebok "migration" ad? It's kind of creepy but kind of cool. For about two seconds (at the :42 mark), you can see a group of Cowboy players but the only one I recognize is Greg Ellis.
  • Kind of nerdy, but some commenter on a Texas Criminal Justice blog created a little skit taking civil libertarians like me to task. It was pretty funny.
  • Stumbled across "Brooke Hogan Knows Best" - a new reality show on MTV of VH1. Awful. Completely staged and awful. But she's kind of hot. I watched the whole thing.
  • I loved Mystery Science 3000 but, man, it was the show where you had to watch with undivided attention.
  • Speaking of hot, Megen Henderson of Fox 4 mysteriously missed the 5 o'clock hour this morning but showed up beginning at 6 o'clock. I'm not sure I've ever seen her do this before.
  • In a metroplex of a krillion people, is it really news when someone tries to steal an ATM machine?
  • The DPS office in Decatur used to be in the basement of the courthouse
  • I like Chipotle and Rosa's as far has quasi-fast Mexican food goes.
  • Great "ATM out of service" video.

Random Boring Vacation Pics




The last one appears to be a croc. Yep, dang straight!!!! It was in the small "lake" outside the hotel. For the longest time I thought he was fake until his eyes opened and his mouth opened wide. And then I jumped on his back and wrestled him - laughing uncontrollably. Or not.

Report of big 380 wreck

Two careflight helicopters and more.

Barry (from mobile)

Rep. Phil King

Spent this much moola during the first six months of 2008 to be your State Representative according to his July "Semi Annual Report". Mercy.

The entire PDF report is here. (Quite frankly, I really don't understand the time period because he had to file several reports before the primary election that cover the same time span. )

But get this: It says he spent on $911.20 on the Wise County Messenger during that time frame. That can't be right. I think the number may be closer to a half billion dollars.

(All his filing are listed here. You guys feel free to root around in them.)

Ugh


Any you Wise County folks having trouble with Embarq "sputtering" over the last couple of days? Or is it just my connection?

Drives me nuts.

Wednesday Afternoon Pick Me Up

Reminds me of one week ago.

(Putting head on desk. Silently weeping.)

I'm Not Sure . . .


. . . why my law partner is in Seymour, TX (I thought that end of the hallway was kind of quiet) but he just sent in the pic of a fine dining establishment.

Based upon all that activity, it kind of looks like the Barnett Shale (insert "power down" sound) doesn't reach that far.

Random Wednesday Morning Thoughts

  • It's that annual UCLA "undie run" and thank goodness someone brought a camera to document the type of activity that offends me.
  • A couple of week's ago I wrote I was skeptical of a sexual assault claim made by a woman in Keller. While I was on vacation, apparently the police released a statement that it "may not have happened." But I can't find a link to it.
  • T. Boone Pickens comes across as a snake oil salesman.
  • Man, there is lots of Texas Tech hype this football preseason. I'll believe when I see it.
  • The television series Black Gold really isn't that good. But I'm glad I don't work on an oil rig. I'd be killed within 48 hours.
  • I don't understand anyone who eats in a restaurant by themselves but doesn't bring along something to read. Just staring off into to space seems weird to me.
  • They sell Viagra over the counter in the Mexican airport. Does that explain the high number of illegal immigrants?
  • I only drink skim milk. Even with cereal.
  • I've hyped the iPhone for five months now. I'm not backing off. Two weeks ago Apple added applications/programs to its iTunes store (most of them for free.) Man, good stuff.
  • During my cave exploring in Mexico, four 18 to 19 year olds were placed in my group of 8 to go with the guide. One of the kids kept referring to "when I was in Switzerland." Was it wrong to hate him for that?
  • Finished watching Coming To America last night. Kinda funny but, dare I say, overrated?
  • Man, there's a church on every corner in Wise County. So much so, you can find one that's "perfect" for you. Which seems backwards.
  • I'm still can't get used to a McDonalds being in Bridgeport.
  • I've not had a Big Mac since, at least, 1990.
  • Once again, I am a meteorological expert by accurately declaring Hurricane Dolly to be no big deal.
  • Argyle football player whom I feel sorry for if the allegations are not true. (And his family had $35,000 laying around to post as a cash bond.)
  • There's a quote that has always stuck with me from the old Moonlighting show when the characters played by Bruce Willis and Cybill Shepherd were being shot at. Shepherd, fearing death, asks Willis if he is religious. He replies, as bullets go flying by, "No, but if you know one that's big on forgiveness with a short initiation period, I might be interested."
  • Remember when everyone freaked when Magic Johnson announced he got The HIV? That was in 1991.
  • I haven't been to the Wise County Reunion since 1993. And I was only there then to park cars. I'm still getting the dust out of my eyes.
  • Stolen from bagofnothing.com: A satellite view of the high tone subdivision that the Jonas Brothers are moving into.
  • How is it that even the poorest of the poor in America are still fat? (Heard that on Generation Kill last night.)
  • Funny report from the Reunion last night: "I've never seen so much spitting in my life."
  • The Cowboys open up training camp on Friday. Man, there is no bigger beating than the press coverage of it over the next four weeks. "Patrick Crayton made an outstanding leaping grab over Terrence Newman during 7 on 7 drills." Yawn.
  • As I prepared to leave Mexico by getting in line to get my boarding pass, I couldn't find some danged postcard size customs form I was supposed to hang on to. At that point, the attendant said I couldn't get in line and "had to go see Immigration." All the life force was sucked out of me as I was pretty sure I'd be in Mexico for another week. But I walked down to the office, there was no line, they handed me another card to fill out, she stamped it, and I was on my way.
-

7.22.2008

And Another: Motorcycle Wreck at FM 730 & CR 4756

Credit: Emailer Amy

Motorcycle wreck in front of Taco Bell

No photo unless someone else got one. Barry (from mobile)

Lawyer Of The Year


Let's just say it involves prison, underage sex, and a wheels off lawsuit against American Express. You know, normal stuff.

Here. (And the comments, especially #5, are pretty funny.)

I feel pretttttty, pretttttty, pretttttty good about my life right now.

Update News

It's all about a shut down Wise County highway this afternoon, but if you are interested in things like that go here.

Hey, Heyyyy


I soooo stole this from D Magazine so everyone go buy a copy of their publication so they won't send one of their high priced, silk suited lawyers after me. (Don't sue me! If you think I'm letting you take that five year old Envoy from me, you are sadly mistaken!)

Anyway, to quote D about this pic:
"[Which] includes one of the greatest facial expressions I’ve seen in a while. Here’s what I imagine going through the guy’s head: 'Okay. Look good. Look sharp. Be cool for the camera …. whoa, HEY. HEEYYY.'"
And visit the D Magazine blog, Frontburner.

(I'm probably good now.)

I Have Discovered A New Mental Disorder

It's called Barnett Shale Tired Head (or "BSTH"), and I hereby claim copyright and trademark and all those other legal words. So everybody else back off.

I can't turn on the TV invention without seeing something about the Barnett Shale. Then there's billboards and the countless newspaper articles. Everybody is getting rich off that stuff except me. Not a dime. (OK, maybe a few bucks from some random oilfield worker gets falsely accused by a trooper of driving while liquored up.) But, in general, mention of the Barnett Shale causes a great deal of depression in my life including Barry tears rolling down my Barry cheeks. I mean, I can hardly breathe when I see terms like "$800 million," above.

Anyway, I'm working on getting "BSTH" included in the DSM-V. If I pull that off, I'll buy my own oil well. Just like Eddie Chiles told me to do when I was a boy.

As We Go Into A String Of 100 Degree Days


Let us all remember March 6, 2008.

7.21.2008

Random Tuesday Morning Thoughts

  • I'm not sure I've ever liked a Woody Allen film
  • Stumbled across CSPAN last night and watched some of a daily press conference held by presidential press secretary Dana Perino. She's awful. She simply seems scared to death and I can't tell you the number of times she said, "I'll have to get back to you on that."
  • Speaking of press secretaries, I never got to mention the death of Tony Snow. Probably the best ever at the job. And he seemed like a nice guy.
  • The Drudge Report is obsessed with tropical storms and hurricanes.
  • Hurricane Dolly is a big bag of nothing but be prepared for minute by minute coverage over the next couple of days.
  • Anyone who is extremely close to me knows this fact: I have an uncanny ability to drop something but catch it before it reaches the ground. I know of three people that know that about me.
  • In Mexico, I swam through a long underground cave that has only been open to the public for a about three months. Creepy. It was called "Rio Secreto" and some folks have loaded up pics of it on Flickr here. But, man, to get to it they put you in the back of some renovated World War II truck and then hauled arse down a bumpy narrow road for five miles.
  • At one point in the cave, they shut off all the lights and allowed us to sit in the darkest of darkness for four minutes without sound. And then the silence was pierced with the sounds of my stomach growling. And then I had to suppress laughter. I wasn't mature enough to be there.
  • I think I'm beginning to figure out why older guys wear some wheels off clothes. It's not that they don't understand fashion, it's that they don't care anymore. (I'll mow the lawn wearing some weird stuff sometimes.)
  • Another death of a kid left in a car yesterday. It's both unthinkable yet believable when you consider the millions of people in the metroplex.
  • There were more details released about the Russ Martin incident (he allegedly made threats to his fiancee while holding a gun and, legally speaking, some other stuff) but, man, his house in Southlake is huge.
  • I'm not sure what I think about Fox 4's Emily Lopez. I see some "fake sincerity" but I need to observe her some more.
  • The new Tiger Woods labeled Gatorade with "25% more electrolytes" makes me think of the movie Idiocracy.
  • From The Ticket this morning: Greatest Sports Year Ever? (Great Super Bowl upset, NCAA Basketball Championship went to overtime, Tiger's crazy U.S. Open win, a Wimbledon men's final that was insane, an 80+ seed of Fresno State winning the college baseball world series)
  • David Letterman last night: "It's so hot in the northeast that vice president Dick Cheney has replaced his pacemaker with an icemaker." Kill. Me. Hard.
  • I couldn't pick the Jonas Brothers out of a lineup. But the Morning News is reporting the boys are buying a home in Vaquero in Westlake. (I drove by that subdivision once wanting to go in but the thing is built like a fortress.)
  • More troubling banking news: Wachovia, the nation's fourth largest bank, reported this morning a loss of $9 billion for the second quarter. Last year it made $2.3 billion during the same period.
  • Not sure why the "locally owned bank" in Decatur is opening a Colleyville branch. Other than they are sure they can make money by doing so.

Looks like grass fire but smoke thick enough to close 380



By 4;30 they were beginning to open the highway back up. And, for the life of me, I'm not sure why the smoke was a severe as it was. I don't know if any structures got in the way, but it wouldn't surprise me.

(Pictures taken from Shell parking lot on 380 looking eastward)

Fire

Dang it, my lawyer job kept me from posting about it. I know it was over by the Waggoner Mansion but I don't know how close. Developing . . .

Now This Is Big Time Law Practice

I just got appointed on a case where a guy is accused of using a make-shift Whizzinator. And I'll be dang if we don't have a statute broad enough to make it illegal. And as an attorney board certified in criminal law, I'd like to state: I had no idea.

Tragedy!


How did I miss this? FORMER Channel 8 sports reporter Erin Hawksworth is now working in Boston.

I'll be in the fetal position under my desk if you need me.

Things I Just Learned From The First 20 Pages Of Time Magazine


  • Jimmy Kimmel and Sarah Silverman have split.
  • Sixty one year old Rolling Stone Ronnie Wood has run off with an 18 year old Russian waitress. (Hey, now.)
  • 1 in 4 Americans do not graduate from high school
  • 1 in 6 Americans do not have health insurance
  • Fannie Mae almost went under last week and its CEO makes $13.4 million a year. Fine job.
  • 42% of Americans have tried marijuana
  • That New Yorker cover sure got everyone riled up
  • At age 41, Mark Spitz tried to make the Olympic team but failed.
  • And this from a Letter to the Editor: "I'm sick of reading that the 15th Amendment of 1869 granted former slaves the right to vote. The 15th Amendment granted only male ex-slaves the right to vote. Women of all races occupied a rung well below males slaves on the U.S. ladder of rights. This failure to include women should not be ignored or forgotten." Duly noted.
  • On an unrelated note, Rush Limbaugh is now referring to Obama as "Little Barry."

Generation Kill


I'm not sure if this is worth a post of its own (then again, what isn't?) but a commenter mentioned that I had missed the first two episodes of HBO's Generation Kill.

When I was trying to go to sleep last night, I had HBO on in the background and that show was already on. (The good stuff on Cinemax was already over.) And, man, that was some pretty good stuff - - - even if I did fall asleep due to exhaustion.

7.20.2008

Random Monday Morning Thoughts

  • My inbox that is right in front of me is so tall that i just powered down.
  • Someone told me that the way to avoid post-vacation depression is to start planning the next one. Good advice.
  • I watched the ESPYs last night for the first time in years. Justin Timberlake hosted and that guy was great. Smooth, funny, and overall in control. (One song and dance skit had a Fake Tony Romo dancing with a Fake Jessica Simpson.) Edit: Funny video of part of show here.
  • Some pitcher for Minnesota had a perfect game against the Rangers yesterday through six innings. The some guy for Texas named Taylor Teagarden came to the plate in only his second major league game. And he homered. The Rangers won 1-0.
  • And as a sidenote about that homerun: It landed a foot from a lady moving out of the way ash she held what looked like a newborn. I always take my newborns out to the ballgame.
  • Laker Girl tryouts.
  • My lawn didn't look too bad. Did it rain?
  • You had to have seen it, but a lady from Fort Worth who lost her parents and brother in a plane crash in Kaufman County over the weekend was interviewd by one of the news stations last night. (I can't remember which one I was watching.) First, I'm never appearing on camera within 48 hours of the death of anyone close to me and, second, she didn't seem upset at all (but, once again, you really had to see it.)
  • I never listen to Russ Martin but he's made the headline after being arrested in Southlake for Aggravated Assault. Trust me, aggravated assault cases, due to the way the statute is ridiculously overbroad, are notoriously nothing more than silliness.
  • Not exactly fun stuff, but this was an interesting post about how Facebook/Myspace pics can become evidence of a defendant's character. That's ridiculous. My Facebook cover pic of me surrounded by Hooter Girls while I was only wearing a speedo reveals nothing about my character.
  • Looks like the Messenger website had issues while I was away. But, when you could finally see Friday's Update, we learned that the Newark City Council will pass an ordinance limiting the number of pets for each household to five cats and five dogs. Gold.
  • R and R reported on a suicide in Bridgeport. Horrible.
  • The new Batman movie looks great which isn't exactly saying anything since it set a box office record this weekend with $155 million.
  • This time one week ago I was throwing up in Cancun.
  • I just noticed that Tropical Storm Dolly is hitting Cancun right now.
  • While trying to catch up with the Bag Of Nothing's posts, this one broke my heart. The War in Iraq was not worth that one man's pain (or her's). Remember, Obama will get us out of there.
  • Forks with any type of covering over the handles bug me.
  • I hear more and more people say, "I don't like drama" (translation: "My friends can be freakin' crazy sometimes.") Ya know, me loves me some drama. I'm never involved in it, but I love watching it.
  • Indy girl catfight involving Danica Patrick (who I still can't stand.) And I can't understand what the other girl is saying, but that accent jazzes me.
  • I mentioned a couple of week's ago I mentioned I hadn't been in Burger's Lake in Fort Worth in years. And while I was away they shut it down due to a possible parasite.
  • A movie star I thought was the perfect girl but who stopped acting years ago: Deborah Foreman from Valley Girl and My Chauffeur.
  • Other news while I was away: Jesse Jackson is caught using the N Word on Fox while he thought tape wasn't rolling but Fox won't release it. You gotta be kidding. The man who railed against Seinfeld's Kramer for using the N-Word is being protected by Fox?
  • Man, did you see the story of the lady who went in for a three hour manicure/pedicure on her wedding day only to learn that her four year old son had died in her car outside of the salon? (I thought it was interesting that temperatures outside "only" got as high as 89 degrees - which apparently is too hot.) They aren't sure if they knew he was in the car.
  • That's Claire Danes in that pic up at the top. Can you believe that?

Initial Random Vacation Thoughts: Getting There


- How can you feel that it is good to be home and sad to be home at the same time?
- I could live in Terminal D. And I could spend hours people watching at any airport.
- Ticketing is a breeze. Swipe your credit card, swipe you passport, and a boarding pass comes spitting out.
- I was randomly picked to go into the new special see-you-neekid x-ray machine. I tried to suck in my gut.
- American Airlines gets a lot of bad press, but the airline worked like a charm for me. Both flights were on time, with no last second gate changes, no-waiting-forever-on-the-tarmac, and no baggage issues.
- In fact, I've never been on a flight like this one where we taxi down to the end of the runway to do the U-Turn for takeoff and (without coming to a stop) the captain says, "We're number one for take off."
- Also a first: The jet was barreling down the runway - seconds from the wheels lifting off the ground - when the captain suddenly shuts down the engines. He tells us about a minute later that he saw a "nuisance light" (the most confusing term ever) and didn't want to take any chances. I was afraid we'd head back to the gate and spend two hours having a maintenance crew check it out. But no. We just did went back to the start of the runway and took off.
- I love the first five minutes of a flight where I look out the window try to figure out what exact part of DFW I'm over.
- The plane was full. I got my tickets about a month ago with frequent flyer miles and that saved me a fortune.
- That American Way magazine isn't that bad. (But it also has a Mensa quiz that makes me feel stupid.)
- Took the above picture with a cell phone. I always wonder how hard it would be to arrange a trip to a part of the beach that no one else goes to.
- Filling out the Custom Declaration Form promising you aren't bringing certain things into the country seems silly.
- The Cancun airport is nice. Really nice. (Or maybe I believe that just because it's air conditioned.)
- Pushing the button which lights up either a red light (your baggage gets searched) or a green light (you are free to go), makes me as nervous as that guy in Midnight Express.
- Having pre-arranged transportation to the hotel is worth every penny. But I've learned that every Mexican airport will have a ton of guys trying to lead you to their transportation company. It took me about a minute to realize the guy I was talking to had nothing to do with my designated company - but only after he took my voucher out of my hand and started to walk away to lead me to his booth. I actually had to yell, 'Hey, give that back."
- The humidity in Cancun is brutal.
- I actually stayed about 25 miles south of Cancun, I think it's an area called Riviera Maya.