Random Thursday Morning Thoughts

  • The Dallas County Republican Chairman, Missy Shorey, 47, passed away "unexpectedly" in a hotel bathroom in D.C.  That's all we know. 
    Photo from D Magazine article about her last year.
  • The NFL draft is tonight. Here's a hot sports prediction from me (a renowned sports expert): If Kyler Murray is taken #1 by the Arizona Cardinals then both Murray and coach Kliff Kingsbury will not be in the NFL in five years. 
  • House Bill 63, making minor pot possession a civil fine only, is debated today on the House floor. It'll be televised online and, believe or not, that stuff can be entertaining.  Edit: The bill was amended late yesterday to make the penalty a Class C misdemeanor. Still not bad, but not as good as a civil fine. 
  • Jennifer Emily, a crime reporter for the Dallas Morning News, ended up on a jury in a murder case so she wrote about it. The column is good but this sentence caught me off guard. "At first, I was Juror 40. A shuffle — a unique Texas tradition that randomly moves jurors around in an attempt to get more people of color toward the front — rocketed me, a college-educated white woman, to the second spot."  (Emphasis added). That's a weird sentence on many levels. Who is she saying is using a shuffle this way since both the State and the defense have an absolute right to a shuffle. Is she saying the State is doing it to avoid the look of discrimination? That the defense is doing it to use discrimination in their favor? And since when did either become a "Texas tradition"? 
  • Photo from Nixon's funeral 25 years ago this week: 
  • In case you missed it, two of Trump's buddies have been hanging out together this week: 
  • The Texas legislature has a weird tradition where some (or all) of past House district reps send current reps a Bible verse using the district number. For example, Sid Miller, former representative of District 137, sent the current rep of that district, Gene Wu, Psalm 137.  Two things: (1) He spelled is "Pslam" and (2) nothing expresses God's love like verse 9: "Happy he shall be, that taketh and dasheth thy little ones against the stones."
  • One of the guys who murder James Byrd Jr. by dragging him to death in Jasper, Texas was executed last night. This photo has always stuck with me. It's art.
    "Jasper County Assistant District Attorney Pat Hardy displays the chain allegedly used to drag James Byrd Jr. to his death during a break in the trial of Lawrence Russell Brewer Thursday, Sept. 16, 1999, at the Brazos County Courthouse in Bryan, Texas. The chain was introduced into evidence Thursday. Brewer is the second of three white men charged with capital murder in the dragging death of James Byrd Jr. near Jasper, Texas. (AP Photo/Pool, Butch Ireland)"
  • My dreams, which haven't exactly been my traditional "I'm in school for the first time in weeks and can't find my class", have really kicked up. They are nightmarish. And I have no idea why they have started up. 
  • Remember Junior High when kids would float a rumor about you liking someone? 
  • Four people have died at the Grand Canyon in the last month or so. In March, before any of those deaths, I was talking to a guy up at the courthouse who went to that national park for spring break. He told me that he went into a convenience store in Flagstaff where the clerk actually said, "You guys be careful. People die out there all the time." And the clerk was right. There are even high tech maps to track them all. 
  • There are just random pieces of news these days which will be forgotten in minutes that would have been considered unbelievably bizarre just five years ago. You know, like a story in the Wall Street Journal of a convicted lawyer of a sitting president talking to, and doing a photo bit with, a washed up star of Rosanne.
  • The four people found dead in the north Fort Worth off of Basswood turned out to be the result of murder/suicide. It's awful. Two of the victims were age 4 and and almost 2, and their father who did it was training to be a CPS investigator.