It's Friday. Let's Get Out Of Here.

Random Friday Morning Thoughts

  • Another morning. Another Houston plant explosion. Here's a ring doorbell cam catching it happening. Here's the first pic at dawn:
  • He's all about ratings. You just know that in the back of his head he is thinking, "I don't care what anyone says, I outta go down Pennsylvania Avenue and defend myself in person! That would being in the eyeballs!" And, boy, would it. 
  • Here's a hot opinion: All the panic over the coronavirus is completely overblown. It causes flu-like symptoms but is only a fraction as deadly.  The death toll in China is at 26 for the coronavirus this morning . The last year of data collected by the CDC puts the death toll in the U.S. from the flu at 61,000.
  • Wait, there's more: Of "cases who died" (their words) from coronavirus, "many had significant underlying conditions" according to the World Health Organization's Emergency Committee two days ago.  Yes, there are "cases" of people who died from coronvirus without the underlying condition, but even the common flu killed a healthy 34 year old in Dallas a coupleof days ago.
  • Look out! There's an invasion of Dirty Libs occurring right before our eyes!
  • (I'm a little late on this but . . . . ) After that massive construction project on I-35/287 in North Fort Worth, I think they seriously screwed it up.  In all the myriad of lanes, the non-toll I-35 southbound briefly goes to only two lanes at Western Center creating a massive bottleneck. Live Google traffic provides the proof you need:
    Captured at 8:21 a.m. this morning.
    Here's where the cluster begins. 
  • I can't remember the last time I heard someone say they bought something off eBay. 
  • Someone needs to do a story of all the side businesses Jerry Jones has. They are many, they are big, and they are frequent:
    Last summer

    Last Fall

  • On some "nostalgia TV" station last night, I stumbled across the Dick Cavett Show where he was interviewing the odd pair of Ann Margaret and Joe Namath. My curiosity piqued when they started talking about a new movie they were starring in together so I had to look it up: A 1970 film called C.C. and Company -- a movie which ended up bombing and being universally panned.  Cavett must have seen it coming. He brought the director up on stage and played a long clip from the film. Afterwards, Cavett asked, "That's the movie? [ Awkward pause.] You guys have a lot riding on this?"    And, as I went down the rabbit hole about the movie, I found this from the review of Gene Siskel: "Ann-Margret has a brief nude scene in which she proves that in addition to having a foul mouth she is fat." Good lord. 
  • The Alvord man accused of stabbing his ex-girlfriend to death in Denton County was indicted yesterday.  Side note: That's a heck of a neck tattoo for a 21 year old. And, maybe I'm wrong, I've never associated Alvord with tattoos. 
  • Speaking of I-35, I haven't been through Waco in a while. This looks like a nightmare . . . 


Random Thursday Morning Thoughts

  • The Denton County elections for county commissioner seem more exciting than ours. The full flyer, unfortunately, isn't on his website. 
  • Dear TxDOT responsible for the red light on 380 in Bridgeport at FM 1658 (the road that leads to the spillway/dam): Those lights are seriously screwed up. If you are headed eastbound on the heavily traveled 380, it cycles for 60 seconds on red and only 15 seconds on green. Fix this, Rich!
  • We've got some animal crime just north of us. And shooting a longhorn is some serious sorriness. 
  • I'm not sure what this was about yesterday but someone got a few seconds of footage. Edit: It's in the Update.
  • This is one weird paragraph in Tulsi Gabbard's silly defamation lawsuit against Hillary Clinton.  [Edit: Deleted. I was duped.]
  • Adam Schiff started Trump's Impeachment Trial with this quote from Alexander Hamilton. It fits so perfectly that I was worried that Hamilton didn't say it. He did
  • I'm really proud of the two Runaway Bay City Council persons who voted against the Second Amendment Proclamation.  I suspect, but don't know, that they did so on the basis of, "Why exactly are we wasting our time on this meaningless gesture? Don't we have roads to fix?"
  • Randomly wondering why NFL players agree to the owners' demand for a "salary cap." The greatest capitalists in America just somehow unanimously agree that the free market is bad in this one aspect of their lives?
  • Very random ending to a Division 3 basketball game. Watch it. He got the shot off, right? But can the ref believe that it is not physically possible to get a shot of in 0.2 so the clock, her ruled, must have had a delayed start? There is no replay in Division 3, but I watched this replay way too much.
  • I never look at a shot clock without having the weird thought of "how can time ever really run out?" Stay with me here. Years ago basketball went to a tenth of a second clock, right? Why? Because without it, and we saw the clock move from 1 to 0 seconds, it actually had to go through 0.9. 0.8, 0.7 etc before it hits 0.0. The buzzer shouldn't sound, we all agreed, when we see 0. It should sound one full second after we see 0. So the rule changed so we could "see" that hidden tenth of a second. But, and this gets to my point, why not go to a hundred of a second clock because once the clock hits 0.0 don't we have to move through the time of 0.09, 0.08, 0.07 etc. to get to 0.00 when time really runs out? But wait. Isn't there still time remaining at 0.00 that we can't see because of the hidden next decimal? Shouldn't we also see the the thousands of a second digit?  When the clock hits 0.00 shouldn't we have to go through 0.009, 0.008, 0.007, etc before we get to 0.000? And this brings us to this: How can it ever end? How about revealing the next decimal place. And the next. There's always time left on the next hidden decimal, right? So, taken to the extreme, how can time ever really run out in a game? (Side note: I actually wrote about this over a decade ago and got scorched in the comments. Then one brilliant guy or gal told me I wasn't a fool at all -- I had actually come up with "Zeno's Paradox" on my own.)
  • The Supreme Court heard arguments yesterday on a Montana state constitutional amendment that bars taxpayer money from being used on private religious schools. (It is one of 38 states to have a "no aid" provision.) Montana says the law simply enforces the Establishment Clause -- government money should not be used to support religion. Makes sense. And those fighting the provision have another problem: The Montana law prevents taxpayer money from going to any private school, religious or not, so everyone is being treated the same. Despite all that, the Trump Court is somehow expected to rule the Montana law unconstitutional. 
  • I'm an expert on the Supreme Court because I was just there. Here's a pic from an angle you never see: There's actually a double row of columns in the front of the building. 
  • It's a good time to point out that far right wingers always want the Texas legislature to pass a "school vouchers" provision which is just the opposite. That's code for "Let's funnel taxpayer money to Christian private schools."
  • Trump had 132 tweets or retweets yesterday. That's a new record.


Random Wednesday Morning Thoughts

  • My faithful readers are apparently very interested in The Lady With the Unnaturally Perfect Mouth and Teeth. I was informed that she once made the Dallas Morning News as a simple high tone Highland Park school parent objecting to book being taught in class. "Tavia Hunt, a parent who raised objections, said she doesn’t want her sophomore daughter or any students to feel uncomfortable in English class because of graphic sex scenes." The book was The Art of Racing in the Rain. It was one of seven books "banned" which included, ironically, The Working Poor: Invisible in America.
  • Whatever happened to the "Kids In Cages" case out of Rhome? I should know, and I don't know. 
  • Can we just proclaim me the Greatest Weatherman In Show Business? How many of you turned to your spouse this morning and said, "Darling, I thought Barry was just doing a weather bit, but he really has an understanding of the atmosphere which makes me really respect him as a scientist as well as a person. He has perfect forecasts"?   And just look at Delkus this morning who is trying to shove "wintery mix" into everything -- even when it is 200 miles away.
  • That was one heck of a brawl at Kansas/K-State game last night. Video here and here.
    Hey, that's a chair!
  • Here's the Rangers' "old" ballpark with its last minute renovations to become an XFL stadium:
  • Rep. Kay Granger is in the cross-hairs of the West Texas big money PAC, Empower Texans, as the money men endorsed her Republican opponent for the upcoming primary. (That's no guarantee of a win. Texas State Senator Konni Burton, even with Empower Texans' checkbook, managed to lose to a Democrat a couple of years ago.)
  • I can't say I'm familiar with the fine work of the group BTS, but enough people like them that they'll play two shows at the Cotton Bowl in Fair Park. That's a lot of fans. 
  • According to the Update, there will be a 2,000 home development in Wise County's New Fairview (whose local government can be very Wheels Off at times). But his sentence got my attention: "Water and sewer for the development would be provided by Aqua Texas." I'd want to know a lot about Aqua Texas before I signed off on that deal.  
    Stolen from the Messenger. Buy their paper. Subscribe online.
     Support local journalism. #DontSueMe
  • I've had a couple of people send me a copy of this Motion for New Trial in Tarrant County alleging a violation of Brady and the Michael Morton Act. As a faithful reader told me, it may be too "in the weeds" for most of my audience, but some might find it interesting.
  • Speaking of motions, I'm working on, "Motion to Have A Jury Who Views My Client Just Like The Senate Jury Views Trump" and "Motion to Exclude All Witnesses and Evidence and For Immediate Verdict of Acquittal." 
  • I have mentioned before  the Conviction Because of a Traffic Accident case out of Tyler which was featured in Texas Monthly. Last week Texas' highest criminal court refused to hear the appeal. 
    • The case, because of the lower court ruling which released him, will go back to a Tyler district court for a punishment hearing where the jury will decide between 2 and 10 years or give the defendant probation.  
    • He had hoped for an outright acquittal out of Austin. 
    • Shout out to one of the lawyers in the case who emailed me about the development. I missed it last week.
    • Heck, this case now needs to be pled. He has a felony conviction and he's already served a year and a half in prison. The State needs to offer the guy probation. Heck, giving him time served even sounds fair. 
  • The Maverick's Dwight Powell had his Achilles snap on him last night. If you are into that sort of thing, you can watch it here.  I had the exact same thing happen to me in the early 2000s. It completely popped and tore, and my calf muscle rolled upwards into a ball. Did it hurt? You bet. But not as bad as you would think. It felt like someone had shot a tennis ball out of a cannon into the back of my ankle, but after that it really wasn't that bad. (And it got me out of going to a wedding that night.) 
  • I've never seen so many politicians and celebrities file defamation lawsuits. Maybe we do live in a world of snowflakes. (Press release and link to the lawsuit, which starts out wildly, is here. Note: I would say her lawyers are crazy because they'll never get a dime, but I'm afraid they'll sue me. Oops.)
  • Messenger: Above the Fold


Random Tuesday Morning Thoughts

  • I just left my Liberally Lean Certified Weather Genius Lab: The rain becomes widespread in Wise County at 9:25 p.m. You'll hear it pummel your house between midnight and 3:00 a.m., and it will continue, but not quite as hard, throughout Wednesday. The chance of snow or ice is less that 0%. We won't even sniff freezing temperatures. 
  • This morning there was an "officer involved shooting" at an apartment complex in Denton which primarily houses UNT students. Here's how the Executive Director of Combined Law Enforcement Associations of Texas (CLEAT) just described it: 
    Scripture? Now I'm picturing the "Your read the Bible, Brett?" scene
  • The Tarrant County Young Republicans issued a pseudo-apology for the White Power gesture being thrown up during the MLK Day Parade yesterday. The group just wrote it off as just "kid stuff" and promised to give him a good talking to.

  • A faithful reader told me yesterday that the lady with the "unnaturally perfect teeth" is Tavia Shackles Hunt who is a former Miss Teen Missouri and former Miss Kansas. Her daughter (below), who also has perfect teeth, goes to SMU.
  • "I wasn't wrong, I am just far more correct now than I was then."  - Alan Dershowitz defending his different positions over the years on what it takes to impeach a president. I may use that.
  • One of the most conservative and gun loving guys I know (and a Wise County native), thinks you're a nut if you open carry. 
    This guy had his 15 minutes of fame yesterday
    at the Virginia gun rally
  • In case you ever thought it would be a good idea to ride a moped on Central Expressway at 1:30 in the morning . . . .
  • The Runaway Bay City Council will vote tonight on support for the Second Amendment.  Rumor has it that Lee Greenwood and a bald eagle will be seated at the council table. But I'm not sure if voicing support for the 4th Amendment, which is supposed to prevent illegal search and seizure of persons and vehicles on highway 380 which splits the town, is also on the agenda.
  • My favorite sign while I was in D.C. (It was in the Newseum.) 
  • "Universe."
  • I lived over a half of century before crimping a coaxial cable. The streak ended yesterday. I'll have to put that on my bragging montage. 


Random Monday Morning Thoughts

  • So the apartment complex murdered him? I thought the family supported the DA's position that there was "no excuse" for the shooting? And nothing relieves your grief like asking for a big bag of money.
  • Rob Lowe wore an NFL cap yesterday. An. NFL. Cap.  Sheesh.  (Side note: The fact that any version of 911 is popular is proof positive that some people will watch anything. Side note #2: How much did they have to pay Lowe to get him to do 911: Lone Star?)
  • After the Chiefs won the AFC Championship, I was fascinated to learn that the lady on the left, the widow of Lamar Hunt, is 81 years old. And I was equally fascinated by the other lady's mouth. It was unnaturally perfect. 
  • There was a shooting at a "River Walk" club in San Antonio, but I had my graphics department prepare an expensive visual aid to show that the river walk is a lot longer than you might think.

    "Circled" portion is the well known area. The shooting
    was on the 1000 block of Avenue B.
  • It's a little hard to explain that these are the stats for the winning quarterback in an NFC Championship game. And it's a little hard to explain the look that Aaron Rodgers threw down yesterday.
  • Compare and contrast: Look at these two college quarterbacks, especially Mahomes, in a bizarre game in October of 2016.
  • It's Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. 
  • There's a gun rally in Virginia today, and in anticipation of it, six neo-Nazis who are a part of a group called "The Base" have been arrested. While briefly listening to WBAP this morning, Brian Estridge caused me to raise my eyebrows when he questioned the arrests and asked "Why?" they were arrested and pointing out the right to free assembly.  Maybe I'm wrong, but it sounds like it was an imminent threat to kill anti-fascists.  (Hal Jay then caused a major stop down when he decided to defend the Virginia governor for banning guns in the capitol building by challenging his co-hosts to "Name me a capitol where guns are allowed!")
  • Edit: Here are the Open Carry guys showing up this morning. Video. (They keep coming.)
  • Now Trump's lawyer for the Impeachment Trial is taking the position I thought Trump should have taken all along. Instead, back then, they called honorable men and women who testified in front of the House committee liars. 
  • I've seen more pictures of Trump and Lev Parnas together than Trump and Barron. 
  • This story was getting a lot of attention over the weekend. A bold future is coming. Combine data mining of everything about you (which you've already freely given up online for a couple of decades) coupled with a third person being able to link that data by simply capturing an image of your face, and that's where we are headed. It's an episode of Black Mirror where you put on a pair of high tech classes and people are named and "ranked" as you scan a room. And you will set the "ranking" parameters -- things you want to be alerted to -- with scores for items like criminal history, religion, number of marriages, credit ranking, health risk, a Twitter online bully score, etc.  And, of course, law enforcement will have it before the rest of us.
  • Perfect fit. The guy who advocated impeaching a President for lying about sex will now defend the most epic liar in presidential history.  (Trump called Starr a "lunatic" in 1999.)
  • Uh, you boys are wearing camouflage in space?
  • The National Archives -- which I'm an expert on because I was just there -- has apologized for this and will remedy the "error."  This is a little North Koreay™. 
  • Messenger: Above the Fold

They don't have color ink in Kansas City?