Messenger Above The Fold

Friday Night Lights When It Felt Like Fall

Decatur (3-0) 52
WF Hirschi (1-2) 16
Instant Analysis: No coach. No problem.

Springtown (0-3) 28
Bridgeport (3-0) 49
Instant Analysis: Springtown isn't very good. (Video from last night - which has 24 views as I post this)

First Baptist (1-2) 31
Chico (2-1) 14
Instant Analysis: That's the private school which is part of the First Baptist Church of Dallas where the annual tuition is over $12,000 a year. (Gulp!) I'm stunned they won after suffering culture shock from seeing an Allsups for the first time.

Electra (2-1) 28
Alvord (2-1) 49
Instant Analysis: Alvord trailed 21-28 going into the 4th quarter. Somebody pulled out a Rally Monkey.

Boyd (2-1) 41
Henrietta (1-2) 6
Instant Analysis: A Beatdown.

Rio Vista (1-2) 28
Paradise (2-1) 55
Instant Analysis: Did you know Rio Vista is the home of a landmark Supreme Court case on whether it is constitutional to arrest someone for a traffic violation? As for the game, I'll go with almost "cruel and unusual."  Edit: Sheesh. It's Lago Vista and not Rio Vista that went to the Supreme Court.  I got my bodies of water mixed up.


So Coach, What Did You Tell Your Players To Get Them Fired Up?

Man, this coaching stuff is complicated.

Jenny McCarthy Still Killin' It And Taking Us Into The Weekend

One Final Pic Of The Bastrop Fires

(Thanks, Kevin.)

Perry On Death Penalty During The Debate

  • That cheering from the crowd is bizarre. Just bizarre.
  • Texas has a "thoughtful" process before the death penalty is imposed? Thoughtful? Well, I'll shut up then. 
  • And you "will" face the ultimate penalty in Texas if you commit capital murder? Well, that is if the DA decides to seek the death penalty -- his discretion and no one else's. And there are no legislative standards to aid or guide him in his decision. 
  • Sixteen states have now banned the death penalty. 
  • And a quick bit of research shows that Texas juries aren't adding (or DA's aren't seeking) people to death row like they used to: 

9/11 News Coverage Documented

Pretty amazing site.

Edit: Kind of helps to have this 9/11 Timeline handy.  (And I watched some of NBC's coverage of the first tower collapsing and it was stunningly inept. The camera was on the tower and you could clearly see it fall in on itself (4:38 mark). Tom Brokaw and Matt Lauer mention that part of the building had collapsed but seconds later Brokaw says that both of the buildings would probably have to brought down because of the damage. They then cut to the Pentagon and yap for almost the next 8 minutes.  It wasn't until the 12:20 mark when finally Matt Lauer tells viewers of the total collapse and they pull the video to show.)

Cop To The Rescue

Video analysis:

0:00 to 0:12: What a great cop. Killing a snake probably isn't in his job description, but he's going to town on that thing like it's nobody's business. A true public servant!  Thanks for helping out your average American beach-goer! You are a credit to the uniform and  . . .

0:12 to 0:19: Wait a second. What do we have here?

0:19 to the end:  Conduct explained. Girls in bikinis: Causing extra effort every day of the week.

Now That's Funny

Aggie supporters are putting up a few billboards in response to Baylor's lawsuit threat blocking the Ags move to the Southeastern Conference.

Random Friday Morning Thoughts

  • Career explosion of the week: "Arkansas TV weatherman Brett Cummins has been questioned by police after waking up in an empty hot tub next to a dead man wearing a dog collar." There's just not many ways you can put a positive spin on that.  (And you know your life has gone horribly wrong when . . . . )
  • Something noticeably absent in Wise County right now: Crickets.
  • About 50 people gathered in Slidell last night to lobby to keep the local post office open. I think you have a rally of 50,000 people, and it wouldn't have an impact. And if the news is true this week, there might not be any post offices open in the very near future. 
  • Saw that the Decatur head coach missed the football game last night because his son was in the hospital due to "emergency surgery" on his leg that he injured last week. Sounds kind of bad.
  • Mrs. LL saw "The Help" and said it was a multiple Kleenex movie.
  • It may be easy to say since my team won, but TCU v. Baylor last Friday might end up being the most exciting game of the year. 
  • Idiocracy continued: (1) The Fox NFL robot, Cleatus, has a twitter account, and (2) the NFL is making all stadiums display fantasy football stats on stadium scoreboards.
  • Criminal appellate opinion: A an illegal immigrant in Wise County fights to overturn his misdemeanor marijuana non-conviction probation  after it lead to deportation proceedings. (You would be stunned by the number of crimes that do not lead to deportation issues, but at least 30 grams of marijuana is not one of them.)
  • You are asking: "An illegal immigrant can be prosecuted and receive probation or jail time in Texas and not automatically be deported?" I'd say 9 out of 10 times. 
  • A treasure trove of audio of 9/11 released by the FAA. 
  • For you Ticket Fans: Paradise v. Rio Vista was the "Big Black Computer's Craig Way Memorial Game of The Week" this morning. (That sounds insane and even I understand it.)
  • And The Ticket also replayed their audio of 9/11 this morning. I'll always remember being on FM 1810 when I heard the morning boys describe the second plane hitting the building, and how flat out frightened I was when I heard George Dunham say, "This is now a military operation." 
  • Sheriff Joe yesterday: "At 2:00 today I will have a press conference at Basic Training in Scottsdale concerning citizens requesting a crime suppression operation." Is that the same thing as saying, today I'll answer questions from citizens requesting that I actually work?
  • The power of the compliment: Of everything that's happened with girl's softball, I still appreciate a dad coming up to me for the first practice and saying, "I just want to say thanks. I know this takes a lot of time and just want to tell you my wife and I appreciate your efforts."  


Political Junkies Only

I'm never sure exactly is going to set the Liberally Lean Nation off (callback joke, see below), but I figured this might -- at least for the politics loving folks. We have crazy Fox Anchor Gretchen Carlson (who has an incredible academic background but tries to act like a simpleton) jumping on the relatively new White House Press Secretary who is, admittedly, awful at his job.  Throw in a New Jobs speech, and you've got some Fair and Balanced reporting. (Good stuff starts around 3:15).

Wise County Just Upgraded Its Court Software . . .

including an online calendar. Now comes news that all Parker County court dates have been wiped from their system by a "support person."  I guess that means someone in the Support Section of a company that provides some software the county uses.  The County's system administrator referred to that person as not very "competent" --- probably in response to a million questions of ,"Just how did this happen?"  

Court administrators are asking lawyers to tell them of any court dates they have scheduled.  Hmmm. If you do criminal defense work, that would technically mean volunteering information to assist in the prosecution of your client. That's a little tricky. 

Want To Cry Again?

A plane crash in Russia this week killed a former Dallas Stars hockey player whom I had never heard of.  Someone else who never heard of him was a taxi/limo/van driver in Dallas who was sent on a routine call to take someone to the airport on the same day.

Her first hand account is here. Wow. I mean, wow.

Edit: The author deleted it after receiving some criticism, but the Google cashed version of it is here.

I'm Calling Sports Foul

These flags all over Decatur (they read "Eagle Nation"), and I'm throwing a penalty flag down. The "[insert name] Nation" implies either (1) your fan base is spread out all over the USA or, (2) your fan base is large and expansive.  Those definitions are official because I just thought them up.  We've got a Sports Violation going on which has to be rectified.

You can have a Yankee Nation, a Cowboys Nation, or maybe even a Longhorn Nation. But you can't have an Eagle Nation. And, admittedly, you can't have a . . .

Random Friday Monday Thursday Morning Thoughts

  • Edit: You'll thank me for not posting the krillions of comments telling me I got the day wrong. Twice. 
  • Motorcycle chase leads to messy motorcycle death that shut down I-20 in Dallas this morning. I heard that the bike hit the back of an 18-wheeler so hard that it bent the truck's rear underride bar.
  • Did you know that the underride bar is also known as the "Mansfield Bar" named after a Jayne Mansfield car accident?  Me neither until this morning. (I know that sounds like an Urban Legend but a quick search seems to indicate it is true.)
  • Lake Bridgeport is now 13 feet low and it looks like it's losing a foot every one and half weeks.
  • But "black bass are good on medium running crankbaits in shad patterns and Texas rigged Jackall Sasuteki Craws." That's probably what I would have chosen. 
  • The Decatur Eagles play tonight? On Thursday? Maybe I'm losing it, but has that ever happened in the regular season? 
  • I've seen just a little of the Republican debate from last night, but Rick Perry continues to have uncomfortable reactions whenever someone takes a jab at him. It's almost a George W type "smirk".
  • Perry called the El Paso border unsafe last night (and suggested President Obama might be an "abject liar" to suggest otherwise). That's a murky claim.  If he's talking about the Mexican side, he's right because it's a death zone. If he's talking about the El Paso side, he's wrong because it has one of the lowest crime rates in America. So is the "border" safe or unsafe? Maybe he was talking about swimming in the Rio Grande.
  • Mitt Romney didn't wear a lapel pin! Mitt Romney didn't wear a lapel pin!
  • Reporter angrily tells man to take a walk. (Language warning.)
  • An "official UNT" twitter account which is anything but "official" but it is kind of funny. And will likely be shut down unless it puts up a disclaimer. 
  • I learned something as a softball coach: Never announce a new practice session on short notice and say that you will understand if your child can't make it. Guess what happens?
  • Two times this year, a Ranger pitcher has entered the game and given up a walk off home run on his very first pitch. Yesterday was one of them.
  • The Dallas Morning News laid off 38 people this week.
  • Miley Cyrus image makeover continues. (Pic).  How old is she again?
  • A Ticket host is in Honduras to adopt a child and before he left he had to sign a Ransom Waiver provided by the Adoption Agency.  That is, if a kidnapping occurs and he is asked for a ransom, the Adoption Agency would not be responsible, would not pay, and would not negotiate on his behalf. How many times did that have to happen before they decided to put a waiver in the standard paperwork? 
  • Dallas Cowboys are in big trouble Sunday: They were already going to use three first time starters on the offensive line, but things got worse yesterday when the best one (first round pick Smith) suffered a knee injury. And both cornerbacks (Jenkins and Newman) have been hurt all preseason, and it was announced yesterday that Newman is out for the first game and that Jenkins hurt a knee in practice.
  • Coach Jason Garrett says, "We welcome the challenge" as he continues to prove he's the most boring interview in the NFL.
  • WBAP's Hal Jay's new catch phrase is, "You can't fix stupid." I'm not saying a thing.
  • Mrs. LL didn't read yesterday's Random Thoughts until this morning. I walked into the room and she was just stared at me. I hope it wasn't one of those "I don't even know you anymore" looks. 


Messenger Above The Fold

We'll Stop Your End Around Play With A Lawsuit Blitz

The Aggies get an invitation to join the SEC so long as there will be no Big 12 lawsuits. The Big 12, as an entity,  says it won't sue.  Everyone other school says the same. Except Baylor.

This thing is dead. Let 'em go. Baylor needs to scramble and try to follow Texas or Oklahoma wherever they go and, if that doesn't work, beg the Big East or even the Mountain West.   This ship is sinking and it's time -- long past time, in fact -- to start looking for a raft.

Julia Roberts In "Pretty Woman"

Toddlers and Tiaras gets an "oh, my!"

Local Tie

Odd: This was a Intoxication Manslaughter case and he was headed to work on a "construction job" in Bridgeport. (Story.) Edit: My Random Thoughts got me so worked up I can't read -- it was the victim who was headed to Bridgeport.

Random Wednesday Morning Thoughts

  • Well, the first Liberally Lean Girl's Softball game is in the books, and I would like to announce that I will be able to say the team led a game at one point in the season. It might have been 1-0 and we ended up losing 2-8, but we were ahead and dominating that game for about five minutes.
  • I'm not sure I've ever felt more important than walking up to home plate before the game and exchanging lineup as and meeting the umpires.
  • But, and these Random Thoughts are about to seriously change gears, I was taken aback by something I did not expect. It was the moments. Those moments during the game that lasted only a second but stuck with me for hours afterwards. The girl who was beaming and couldn't wait to tell me, "What did you think of my hit?"; the nervous player whose helmet I slapped, told her to have a "good time up there", and watched her smile as she walked to the plate; or even the coaching moment when our cut off man held up both her arms because that is what we taught her. 
  • But one of my favorite moments came when a first year player, who is a bit tall and a bit awkward, managed to get on base with  a walk and then somehow stole second. We then got bold and had her steal third, and she came in with plenty of time to do so standing up. Success! Well, almost. She and I had worked on one thing in practice: Be under control and don't step off the bag once you get there. However, she came into the bag so hard and so fast and so excited that she couldn't help step off the bag no matter how hard she tried. As she desperately tried to get her foot back on third base in a frenzied two seconds, she was tagged out as I stood three feet away yelling "Foot on the bag! Foot on the bag!". Oh, no! But she didn't kick the ground or yell or storm to the dugout. No. She looked up, slumped her shoulders, but smiled at me. And if I read that smile correctly, it said,  "I tried so hard to do what I supposed to do, and you and I have gone over this, but I want to tell you, coach, I'm really, really excited to have almost gotten to third in my first game!" 
  • A moment. 
  • And, that's what I learned. The game was a game of moments. Little, brief moments. A few little moments after hours of practice and planning which, I'll admit, have been taxing and stressful. But after one game, the coaching experience has pretty much been what a buddy of mine twenty years ago with  two small kids explained to me about parenting: "Hey, it's a beating," he said. "But it's a good beating."  I think he meant, "It's really, really hard, but there will be moments - great moments - that you wouldn't trade for anything."
  • And if I sound a little reflective this morning, it is because I am. Last night and again this morning I thought, you know, life is really hard. It really is. There are bills. There is sickness, and pain, and death. There are dreams that are dashed, relationships that fail, and mistakes and horrible choices along the way. But there are those moments -- those wonderful moments -- that happen just ever so often to make it all worth it. 
  • And that is my surprising random thought of the day -- all caused by a little girls softball team that is already meaning more to me than I mean to them. 


One More College Football Note And Then I'll Shut Up

Baylor has gone into Official Panic Mode if we are begging the other Texas schools to not leave us behind.

If the University of Texas were to trick up its uniforms like Maryland:

And the University of Colorado goes to a Rave before walking out onto the field?: 

Texas Fire Photo Gallery

Probably the "best" one you'll find.

Random Tuesday Morning Thoughts

  • The fire in the Bastrop area had to bad -- really bad -- to get that much coverage when most news stations were shorthanded due to Labor Day.
  • But I bet Rick Perry didn't mind one bet missing the presidential forum in South Carolina to return to Texas to "survey the damage." It looks like the race is his to not screw up and that was a chance to screw up.
  • Heard on the radio this morning: "When we look in a mirror we think 'well, there are some flaws but not too bad.' But when we look at ourselves in a photo we weren't expecting to be taken, our reaction is one of, 'Oh, my gosh!!"'
  • From the Update:  "ESL classes and a new citizenship class will begin Wednesday at First Baptist Church in Decatur." I'm guessing that's English as a Second Language.
  • Jeff Bolton, the conservative talk show host on KLIF, this morning said he wouldn't live in the Hill Country or any other rural area because of the lack of quick fire and police response and the quality of education. Even assuming he's right (a major leap at best), its ironic that a hardline conservative considers government services at the top of his Quality of Life list. 
  • And the Tea Party will not be happy with what Jimmy Hoffa, Jr. said before he introduced President Obama over the weekend. 
  • The Big Tex Awards for the silly fried foods at this year's State Fair makes me shake my head. What was the winner, Fried Bubble Gum? Sheesh.
  • Sports fans: Did you hear/read about the the shocking "pick u up some wings" tweet that went out over Jean-Jacques Taylor's twitter account? He claimed he was hacked which is a common excuse these days. (Use the Google if interested, but it certainly is an "oh, my" moment.)
  • Mrs. LL is having a Softball Team Uniform Breakdown to try and get them done in time. Sometimes, "Baby, it's all going to be OK" just doesn't do the trick. But it'll be OK.
  • For you twitter fans, the #FirstWorldPains hashtag is a funny bit. 
  • Former TCU/Bridgeport star Colin Jones made the cut with the 49ers but it sounded a little closer than expected.
  • The Ticket had Daniel Johnston of The Devil and Daniel Johnston on the radio last week. You don't know who he is either, do you? But I'm pretty fascinated now. 
  • Its the 10th Anniversary of 9/11 Week so get ready. And why the government just didn't take the World Trade Center site by eminent domain, and then build those buildings right back like they were will always be a mystery to me. (Side note: A disturbing cover of The Sunday Times Magazine about how we refuse to talk about those who jumped to their death off of the Twin Towers.)
  • The Cowboys game on 9/11 in New York against the Jets on  national TV on Sunday night has all the markings of being quite the production. The chances of former New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani trying to get camera time?: 100%
  • I had the last pick in a 14 team fantasy football draft yesterday. My pick: Vince Young.


My Fantasy Football Draft Today In Wise County

Elected officials, prosecutors, lawyers, a trooper, and a bunch of kids. It's insane, I tell you. But at least we do it with a Las Vegas feel to it.

(Be nice. I like this girl.)

College Uniform Alert

I'm not sure what was going on this weekend with crazy tricked up uniforms (Oklahoma State and Georgia come to mind), but Maryland on ESPN tonight has gone over the top. What the heck is that? What is up with the half and half helmet? It's like Mad Max or something.

For once, I'll give huge credit to Texas and other schools which refuse to tamper with the traditional look.


Pictures From Tonight

Lightening strike at the West Virginia / Marshall  football game (no one was hurt despite an initial ESPN report that they later pulled):

Near Bastrop today (per Facebook)? If real then "wow".

Edit: Video. At the 1:30 mark you can see how high the flames are.


But I think we'll end up being one day short of another record (number of 100 degree days.) I can handle second place.

Messenger Above The Fold