blank'/> Liberally Lean From The Land Of Dairy Queen: 9/21/08 - 9/28/08

9.27.2008

Pulled From The Comments

I would like to know the address. Seriously. (And I've been incorrectly referring to the book as An Innocent Man.)

Dancing With High School Stars Results

Prosper 34 Decatur 21 Argyle 24 Bridgeport 30 Boyd 14 Grandview 57 Paradise 41 Nocona 7 Henrietta 50 Chico 20

9.26.2008

Decatur Homecoming Parade . . .

... just came by my office.

This Girl Would Like To Let You Know . . .

. . . if you don't watch the presidential debate tonight, that it is homecoming for Bridgeport and Decatur. And it's Lady's Night at Frilly's.

Ex Evil Empire Runner A Free Man

Uh, the problem is that both DWIs were misdemeanors and you don't need a grand jury's approval to prosecute a misdemeanor. Story. (Thanks for the text, Thomas)

The Things I Didn't Know

The Fort Worth Court of Appeals issued an opinion late yesterday regarding a medical malpractice lawsuit against Wise Regional Health Systems f/k/a Decatur Community Hospital. Since the opinion doesn't use the word "indictment" in it, it's a little hard for me to follow. But the issue appears to be whether the Plaintiff has made allegations that allow the hospital and employees to be sued even though they are normally protected by sovereign immunity. Which gives rise to something I didn't know: ""There is no dispute that Appellant Wise Regional . . . constitutes a governmental entity." The hospital is a governmental entity? Really? I can't believe I didn't know that. Insomnia curing opinion is here. (pdf)

Friday Morning Random Thoughts

  • While you were sleeping, Washington Mutual was seized by the FDIC and then sold to JPMorgan Chase & Co. Holy cow.
  • Everyone is referring to that as a "bank failure" which makes it the largest "bank failure" in the history of the United States.
  • Being the voice of Big Tex would be a beating. And that guy is kind of creepy based upon a live interview I saw this morning.
  • I slept right through my alarm this morning. That never happens.
  • From a political standpoint, this economic mess can't have come at a worst time for the Republicans since the masses, rightly or wrongly, blame the incumbent party. (Did I already write this?)
  • Grisham's An Innocent Man (I'm 60% through it) is absolutely fantastic. And the fact that it focuses on a small county's criminal justice system is like candy for me (if I really liked candy.)
  • The smoking hot Jillian Barberie is a shocking 42 today.
  • Here's the pretty detailed press release from the U.S. Attorney regarding the arrest of the former Boyd pastor on child pornography charges. (Not sure why the feds need to get involved.) But you might want to rethink your life if you actually choose the email address of: girlpedolover@yahoo.com. Can you make it any more obvious?
  • I wonder if IHaveAMethLabInBoyd@yahoo.com is available? (Edit: I added this line after this post originally went up. At the same time, MzChief made an almost identical joke in the comments. Neither one of us saw the other do the same schtick. Frightening.)
  • Ugh: Last night I stick the ol' gas nozzle in the gas tank, begin filling, and go into the convenience store for something else (although I always fear coming back out and seeing that I have flooded the Southwest Proper with gasoline.) But, after spending a few minutes in the store, I come back out to see that the filling had malfunctioned after 1.07 gallons. Fail.
  • I got an automated email last night from the web site I told you about a couple of weeks ago that alerts you to close sporting events. It read, "Oregon State 21 #1 USC 0 - Halftime - Potential Upset - ESPN Ch. 206." I didn't even know the game was going on, and I was able to switch over and watch what turned out to be a an actual upset.
  • And Oregon State was lead by a 5'6" running back. Go little guy.
  • Fox 4 Megan Henderson told the TV world this week that that she has been diagnosed with "toasted skin syndrome." That's about all I know, but I'm speculating like a mad man.

9.25.2008

Thursday Afternoon Pick Me Up

Once again, I try to bring people together in a time of crisis and uncertainty. (Double thanks emailer.)

I Think Those Wheels Might Be Starting To Wobble

Watch CBS Videos Online (Thanks, Kevin.) Edit: Ugh, you've got to be whipped with a commercial first. Edit: Man, I have no idea what in the heck she is saying in this excerpt (although the video/voice lack of sync will drive you nuts.)

And Another

Story.

Not A Sports Post

I was half heartedly watching the NFL Channel last night when I looked up and saw the end of the Tampa Bay / Chicago replay where Bucs' kicker Matt Bryant won the game on a field goal. One of the few Baylor players in the NFL, I had almost forgotten about Bryant. And then this news strikes this morning. The pain that some people have to endure.

A Rare Sportzzzzz Post

Man throws football. Man catches football. Well, maybe a little more impressive than that.

Random Thursday Morning Thoughts

  • That David Blaine special had the dumbest ending in the history of ever. I'm surprised that New York crowd didn't riot, and I'm surprised announcer John Saunders agreed to stoop that low.
  • McCain suspends his campaign and wants to cancel the Friday debate in order to work on the financial "crisis". Obama says a president needs to be able to handle more than one thing at one time. Advantage: Obama
  • Man, if the debate fires up tomorrow with Obama there and McCain's chair empty, what a scene that will be. And that photo would be everywhere.
  • There are a bunch of wooden pallets on fire in Crowley this morning. Channel 8 and Channel 5 couldn't get a shot from anything other than 10 miles away. Fox 4 managed to get one from about a 1/2 mile away. No one has a helicopter in the air.
  • Bush was on TV last night trying to explain why he wants to use $700 billion of your money to bail out dumb lenders. Ever since WMDs, he pretty much couldn't convince a fish the sea was salty.
  • "Banks could fail, including some in your community," he said. Really?
  • Ok, I might be a little grumpy towards the Republicans this morning.
  • Better Jessica Alba pics than yesterday. Kind of makes me want to visit that bar in Sin City.
  • I just found out it was "premier week" on network TV. It's not like the old days where if you missed something, you might never see it.
  • Video of the day yesterday: Radio studio goes up in flame while DJ keeps rolling.
  • Headline: "Palin once blessed to be free from 'witchcraft'". And there's a nine minute youtube clip to back it up but there's no way I'm giving up nine minutes of my life for that.
  • After jogging yesterday outside, I flipped on the TV and saw Dancing With The Stars. I hung in for about 10 minutes waiting for that Kardashian chick, but had to change channels when some 12 year old boy started singing.
  • I promise I created anti-lock brakes in my brain as a kid during an ice storm. My dad had just explained to me that once your tires lock up on ice, you're no longer in control. It had to be around 1976 or 1977.
  • I thought about that while seeing the trailer for the new movie about the guy who invented the intermittent windshield wiper that was stolen by Ford. Which looks pretty good by the way.
  • I still remember my first home run as a kid in organized baseball. Left field. Three innings later the game was cancelled due to lightening.
  • There's an email going around suggesting that if the $85 billion bailout of AIG were instead distributed to 200 million adult Americans, that each person would get $425,000. I'm no math major, but that's not right. Is it?

Gas Shortage In Bridgeport?

A faithful reader sends along these pics of at least one gas station in Bridgeport not having gas in its station.

Wise County Connection

An emailer says that the guy arrested in this story used to be the pastor at the First United Methodist Church in Boyd. And didn't I make a random observation about Royse City in yesterday's Random Thoughts?

9.24.2008

In Lieu Of "Wednesday Afternoon Pick Me Up"

Caption this.

An Exclusive Club . . .

. . . is handing out leaflets which, uh, suggest that an Obama presidency would not be good for America. You, too, could join that group so long as you meet the qualifications of an "adult heterosexual men and women who are entirely of European Christian ancestry." Oh, yeah, the leaflet is here.

Random Wednesday Morning Thoughts

  • I've begun "reading" John Grisham's An Innocent Man. So far: Great. Man, I'm a sucker for true crime written by someone who accurately portrays the system.
  • Every time I read or see something interesting, I want to go there just to see it. Now I just want to go see the courthouse in Ada, Oklahoma (the main town in the book.)
  • I haven't been to Northpark mall in forever.
  • The Evil Empire has produced some wheels off stars: Ricky Williams, Cedric Benson, and now Vince Young.
  • Every year: News footage of Big Tex being raised. Every year: Power Down.
  • Anybody hear about 11 people being shot at a Texas nightclub over the weekend (although no died)? Didn't think so. And the club's name was Graham Central Station -- I think I went in a club by that name in Wichita Falls once.
  • I saw a letter written by a hypothetical friend of a client yesterday that was typed, single space, three pages long, and (here's the payoff) did not contain one paragraph break.
  • Whenever I hear about "Royse City" (which is just outside of Dallas), I think of an old western town with an actual saloon.
  • I think I got honked at this morning but I'm not sure if it was directed at me. That's frustrating because you can't even get mad.
  • I pull my hair out when I see the local weather forecast say, for example, "It's going to be 81 in Denton and Sherman, 82 in Plano, 80 in Rockwall . . . ."
  • I saw the basketball area over at North Texas referred to as the "Snake Pit" yesterday. I'm not sure I had heard that name in a while. Edit: A commenter correctly points out it's the "Super Pit" and had I read past this headline, it would have all made sense.
  • The Banana and Gorilla prank sure has received a lot of media coverage (the boys even got interviewed yesterday.) But there should be a criminal defense of: Funny enough to be excused.
  • Even though a pretty good number of Wise County kids go to Northwest ISD, I never consider the Texans to be a "Wise County team".
  • Boy, McCain is keeping Sarah Palin more protected than a newborn's fontanella. Don't expect a press conference any time soon.
  • "PETA sent a letter to . . . Ben & Jerry's Homemade Inc., urging them to replace cow's milk they use in their ice cream products with human breast milk, according to a statement recently released by a PETA spokeswoman." Could give rise to some awkward ordering while in line.
  • Dallas ISD is always a disaster. I remember back in the late 1980s that the superintendent used school funds to furnish her condo in what is now Uptown Dallas. She went to prison.
  • Jessica Alba, and I loves me some Jessica Alba, has lost her baby fat.
  • Good lord, someone has walked into my office at 7:48 a.m.

9.23.2008

Dating Advice From Tech Coach Mike Leach

There's just something about this guy that makes me laugh. You know, like the crazy uncle who might say anything at any moment. And although this clip isn't award winning (unlike my all time unrelated favorite of Crack Head Leprechaun) this one does have its moments. Just listen for the Jerry Springer crowd oft used word of "conversate" and the big finish with "trade computer schemes." I've been doing that for years. That's why I'm not married.

And On A Lighter Note . . . .

. . . anybody seen my monkey?

"Money Quotes" From Today's Bailout Hearing

At least we're getting a little support:
  • "I understand speed is important, but I'm far more interested in whether or not we get this right," said Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn.
  • Sen. Richard C. Shelby of Alabama, the panel's senior Republican, was even more blunt. "I have long opposed government bailouts for individuals and corporate America alike," he said. "We have been given no credible assurances that this plan will work. We could very well send $700 billion, or a trillion, and not resolve the crisis."
  • "Just because God created the world in seven days doesn't mean we have to pass this bill in seven days," said Rep. Joe Barton, R-Texas.
  • Added Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., "I am emphatically against it."
  • "This massive bailout is not a solution, It is financial socialism and it's un-American," said Sen. Jim Bunning, R-Ky.
  • "After reading this proposal, I can only conclude that it is not just our economy that is at risk, Mr. Secretary, but our Constitution, as well," Sen. Chris Dodd said.

Source

Chris Rock On David Letterman

LETTERMAN: Now what about Sarah.. the governor of Alaska, Sarah Palin? Now that was sort of a surprise. ROCK: [In his fast talking and excited voice:] That is unbelievable! Have you been to Alaska, Dave? LETTERMAN: No, I've never been... ROCK: It's like The Road Warrior with snow. LETTERMAN: Really. It's bleak, a little? ROCK: It's crazy up there, man. Insane. And she's shooting mooses, and she's got the moose, holding a dead, bloody moose. Michael Vick's like, 'Why am I in jail?' LETTERMAN: Exactly. ROCK: What the hell? You let a white lady shoot a moose. Black man want to kill a dog, that's a crime.

Welcome To The Cougar Den

Random Tuesday Morning Thoughts

  • Give these high school kids a college scholarship: "One dressed as a banana and the other as a gorilla and, shockingly, the banana chased the gorilla across the football field." (Youtube clip.) Monkey humor is always genius.
  • I'm not sure what Fergie's "My Humps" was doing playing in the background at a high school football game.
  • I nailed a penny to a tree with a huge nail in the woods behind my house when I was a kid . One of these days I'm going to try and find it but I suspect it's been swallowed by the tree trunk.
  • "Most political positions are emotions wrapped with words."
  • I had a confusing dream last night. It started out being confronted by a gang member in Dallas and then morphed into me rooming with a black guy at the Dallas Cowboy's training camp as I was trying out for wide receiver. Talk about Crazy Head.
  • David Blaine is one weird guy. Now he's hanging upside down in Manhattan which seems a long way from, "Pick a card, any card."
  • A gal up at the courthouse claims that I can't say I "read" a book when I "only" listened to the audio version.
  • I've never watched Dancing With the Stars but I might since I've heard the very hot Kim Kardashian is on it this season.
  • NBC announcer Al Michaels once has a very small role playing a lawyer on Hawaii Five-0.
  • Sarah Palin is set to meet with Bono in New York today. I predict some awkward pauses.
  • I think my bathroom scale is broken. It fluctuates by four or more pounds per day.
  • A man who just happens to be black is at the top of the Country Music Charts. That's only the third time ever. Wise County demands recount - "wants every vote counted."
  • If you ever hit those ridges dug out on the shoulder of 287, it'll get your attention.
  • Is it more tragic when someone dies in the middle of the day in a traffic accident (as happened in Decatur yesterday) as opposed to dying in a similar car wreck at 2:00 in the morning?
  • I don't think TCU has a chance against Oklahoma this weekend. Unrelated college note: You can see a University of Texas horrific tight end injury from last week here (and I refuse to watch it.)
  • Despite the Google Street View van being in Decatur a few weeks back, the street view version of Decatur still isn't available on Google Maps.
  • I know at least two people that will TIVO a football game and begin watching it 45 minutes after it starts so as to skip through the commercials. Good idea.
  • The exit ramp from 380 eastbound going to 287 southbound in Decatur is poorly designed.
  • The sound of gloom on the horizon: Big Barnett Shale player "Chesapeake Energy said Monday that it will scale back its spending on drilling and development because of the sharp drop in natural gas prices since early July, a move that could be followed by other producers." Man, if we have a natural gas bust in Wise County, it'll be ugly. And a lot of empty motels.

9.22.2008

This Man Has A Big Bag Of Your Money - And He Intends To Use It

The text of the $700 billion government bailout bill is relatively short, very clear, and absolutely jaw dropping. In essence, it gives Secretary of the Treasury the authority to buy whatever mortgage loans he wants from banks across the nation and, heck, maybe even get pretty creative. Proof:
Sec. 2(b) Necessary Actions.--The Secretary is authorized to take such actions as the Secretary deems necessary to carry out the authorities in this Act,
And what if he does something absolutely stupid or wants to bail out banks with whom he has past personal or business relationships? Get ready for the shocker:

Sec. 8. Review.

Decisions by the Secretary pursuant to the authority of this Act are non-reviewable and committed to agency discretion, and may not be reviewed by any court of law or any administrative agency.

I've never seen anything like what our federal government is doing right now. They are giving our money away and telling us to our face that there is nothing we can do to challenge it. And it's a bi-partisan slap in the face with a Republican president and a Democratic congress.

Land of the free? Sheesh. We're slaves to a federal entity that abuses us and does not fear us. Not exactly the cornerstone of a great nation.

(Credit: Houston lawyer Mark Bennett.)

Thank You Sir, May I Have Another?

Wise County is scaring me a little bit. I have had discussions with some of the prosecutors about their desire to require SCRAM devices as a condition of probation in some selected cases. Those devices are not-so-little ankle bracelets that detect alcohol intake and record it. Each night the defendant plugs the device into a modem and the daily readings are sent off to Big Brother. In some cases, I'll admit, this might make sense. As one prosecutor correctly noted, a guy who gets two or more DWIs would not be a "criminal" if we could separate him from alcohol. But then I got a call from an old client who had been arrested for DWI. Frankly, it was his second arrest for such an offense. But imagine my surprise when he told me that the SCRAM device had been ordered as a condition of his bond. Understand what that means: Before the case is even filed in court, he is required to install the device on his ankle. (The statutes allow for an interlock device to be imposed as a condition of bond for DWI-2nd or greater but they say nothing about SCRAM devices.) Some of you hardliners might be saying, "Good! If I had my way I'd keep him locked up until his trial." (That due process thing can get in the way sometimes.) But here's the kicker, when my client got to the jail he agreed to blow into the Intoxilyzer. He didn't think he was drunk, and he was right. I saw the paperwork: The results came in less than .08. But that didn't stop a Justice of the Peace from imposing the SCRAM device as a condition of his bond. And click on that image to discover the cost. Incredible.

In The Valley Of The Shadow Of . . .

. . . the Star Telegram home page as of this moment. (Even the first story resulted in a death.)

Man, There Are A Lot Of Rules To Follow

Story. (Thanks emailer)

Father Of The Year

Now I'm no engineer, but I'm pretty sure I saw "disaster" written all over that stunt even before little Johnny got launched down the ramp. But at least the little tyke had the protection of a plastic roll bar. But I am disapointed that I didn't hear dad say, "Here, hold my beer" before he embarked on that father/child bonding experience. And (I'm stealing this next line): Did I hear a monkey at the end of that clip?

Anybody Else Having Trouble?

And, oddly, this site say's the Messenger's URL doesn't exist - which can't be right.

9.21.2008

Random Monday Morning Thoughts

  • Anybody else see the commercial for the movie Quarantine that was shown during the Cowboy game last night? Seemed a bit too intense for prime time football.
  • Here are nine minutes of fans jacking with a sleeping guy at Shea Stadium. As much as I never thought I'd watch all nine minutes of it, I couldn't turn away.
  • I'm thinking about growing my hair longer again. I tend to alternate every year.
  • The Cowboys are great, but I just have a bad feeling about this team.
  • Probably mentioned before: If I take an afternoon nap, it takes me an hour to fully wake up. And I'm incredibly confused when I wake up thinking that it is morning.
  • Texas Tech is in the Top Ten for the first time in forever. (But we don't know much about them since they've only beaten Eastern Washington, Nevada, SMU, and Massachusetts.)
  • The Dallas Morning News implemented a "comment section" on most of its stories about a month ago, some times it doesn't know how to deal with them. Case in point, Barefoot Sanders (the federal judge who presided over the Dallas ISD desegregation) died over the weekend. Most of the initial comments were racist diatribes which were immediately taken down.
  • Odd note from that Barefoot Sanders story: "1936 -- Is named freckle champion of the State Fair of Texas." Say what?
  • I always wanted a cool nickname. I don't think "Barefoot" is cool.
  • It seems like only yesterday that we didn't trust the reliability of email. Now it's a rare occurrence if one doesn't make it to its recipient.
  • Another home invasion in northwest Tarrant County, and another home intruder dead. What is up with these stories?
  • Blink 182 drummer Travis Barker and DJ AM were injured in a plane crash this weekend that killed four but they survived. I think I've heard a Blink 102 song, but I had never heard of DJ AM.
  • That "Eveyone's Going To Choctaw" jingle is getting on my nerves.
  • I attended one game in Yankee Stadium and saw a fan blow out his knee as tried to hop down a several rows of empty seats.
  • Craziest obituary ever in the Dallas Morning News?
  • So the federal government is going to buy $700 billion in bad loans? Does anyone else think this magic wand trick may one day implode?
  • And I've said it before, if you are a simpleton like me and want to understand how this mortgage crisis came to be, you have to listen to the one hour speciall of This American Life: A Giant Pool of Money. I actually listened to it for the second time this weekend. Fascinating.
  • I've seen maybe 15 minutes of Grey's Anatomy but I bet it's pretty good.
  • Edit: The Ticket just mentioned that the holder on Martin Grammatica's failed field goal yesterday (the game doesn't matter) was wearing a watch while on the field yesterday. Off.

I Don't Even Know If I Should Be Proud Of This

What I posted two weeks ago: What I wrote: What actually happened: