Month: June 2005

  • We've had a couple of lazy summer days, complete with delightful visitors.  Yesterday Brianna (who is 5 years old this very day!)  and Meredith were over for a few hours, and they had a terrific time together:

    You can see I dish up gourmet fare.  Hey, I ate the same thing. 

    Today Dmitry had Joe and Zhenya over for several hours, to go to the
    club and then just hang out in his room.  Dan impressed me half to
    death by electing - all on his own! - to skip the day's festivities so
    as to finish some schoolwork.   

    Caught Zhenya right before his dive.

    Joe leaping off the low board.

    Dmitry jumping off the high dive.  Those boys were out there for
    well over an hour and a half with no signs of stopping, but heat and
    hunger finally drove me to call them in so we could come home. 
    What do you wanna bet they'd still be up there otherwise?

    After running the boys home we went by the "Russia store" to pick up
    some frozen pelmeni for dinner, and the young man behind the counter
    asked me if I remembered the last time the two of us came in to
    eat.  I allowed that yes, indeed, I remember quite well.  It
    was just a few weeks ago, after all.  He then asked if I recalled
    the family who came in and sat down while we were there . . . mother,
    daughter, grandmother?

    Acknowledged that it's a bit hazy but now he mentions it, yes, I seem to recall such a group sitting fairly close to us.

    He grinned, looked to make sure Dmitry couldn't overhear, dropped his voice, and confided the girl has a huge crush on Dmitry, asking about him whenever she comes in.

  • 600,000?  

    When did Fort Worth's population grow to over 600,000

    According to an article in the Dallas Morning News, though, that's
    where we're at now . . . 603,337; we jumped 3.1% in the last year.

    Didn't we annex someone who didn't much want to be annexed?  I
    daresay a fair chunk of growth is accounted for by annexation, since
    we're not landlocked like Dallas.

    Still don't like it, though.   Fort Worth's getting too darn big for its britches. 

  • Okay, this is sweet.  Flexible, imaginative thinking at its very best:

    "Lost Liberty Hotel" proposed on Justice Souter's land

    On Monday
    June 27, Freestar Media, LLC informed the Towne of Weare, New Hampshire
    that it wants to begin the permit process to build a hotel on the land
    owned by Justice David H. Souter. Justice Souter's vote in the "Kelo vs. City of New London" decision
    allows city governments to take land from one private owner and give it
    to another if the government will generate greater tax revenue or other
    economic benefits when the land is developed by the new owner.

    An article at said,
    "The justification for such an eminent domain
    action is that our hotel will better serve the public interest as it
    will bring in economic development and higher tax revenue to Weare,"
    Logan Darrow Clements of California wrote in a letter faxed to town
    officials in Weare on Tuesday.

    "Souter, a longtime Weare resident,
    joined in the 5-4 court decision allowing governments to seize private
    property from one owner and turn it over to another if doing so would
    benefit a community.

    "The letter dubbing the project the "Lost
    Liberty Hotel" was posted on conservative radio show host Rush
    Limbaugh's Web site. Clements said it would include a dining room
    called the "Just Desserts Cafe" an a museum focused on the "loss of
    freedom in America.'"

    Darned if I can see a problem with it. 

  • If there's one thing at which we humans aren't particularly talented, it's
    knowing when to take out the trash, turn out the lights, lock the door,
    and leave.

    As supporting evidence of this, I give you the Miss America pageant.

    Look, folks, stick a fork in it . . . it's done.

    It lost its ABC contract and has been scrambling in the attempt to find
    another television sponsor, which it finally did:  the Country
    Music Television, a cable network based in Nashville.  The contest
    won't be held this year at all, instead occurring in January, and
    there's a strong chance it won't take place in Atlantic City.

    The ratings have been dropping like a rock for years.  I can't
    recall the last time I watched it.  Ages ago, that's for sure.

    So just drop it!  Stop it!  Shove lilies in its hands and draw the shroud over it.  It's dead

  • This is not precisely A Burning Issue or anything, but what the heck happened to the price of paper towels? 

    While the price of gasoline has been getting headlines for its
    relentless rise into the stratosphere, a similar hike has been going on
    with paper towels.  Whatever happened to an inexpensive roll being
    60 cents or something?  A roll of Viva at Target was $1.79! 
    For ONE ROLL of paper towels!

    Shocking. What's the world coming to, that's what I wanna know....what's the darn world coming to. 

  • What is up with canasta?  Never played it in my life....have no idea how
    to play it, in fact.  Yet let me go to play Addiction Solitaire at
    Yahoo! and there'll be maybe 400 people playing that, but upwards of
    ten times that many playing canasta. 

    Isn't canasta an old-lady game played in retirement homes or something?

  • I was just listening to an ad on television and was struck by its
    prideful declaration, "We've always broken the rules, but now we're
    rewriting the rules."

    It's not the first time an advertisement has referred to "breaking the
    rules" as a Good Thing.  Which is rather odd, when one comes to
    think about it.  What message do we send out when "breaking rules"
    is a perceived cause for boasting?

  • That was so sad, the outcome of the search for the three missing boys in New Jersey. 

    It's also puzzling and frustrating, as they were discovered in the
    trunk of a car sitting in the yard they were last seen, and that the
    police had reportedly searched early on.  If the police didn't
    bother forcibly popping the trunk to make sure the boys weren't inside,
    that wasn't much of a search. 

  • By golly, guess who is in town, albeit briefly?

    Charles, that's who.  He showed up last night, having been
    fetched....along with his friend and co-worker Tanner and
    Tanner's father, due to it being T's birthday today and he wants his
    friends here for it.  Charles and Aaron will return to Anson

    Charles has his car back, our having ransomed it from the body shop today.  He is quite pleased to have wheels again.

  • I don't often get into political matters here, but for this I'll make an exception.

    The Supreme Court has lost its little pink mind, or at least five of the nine justices have. 

    The ruling earlier today that local governments can happily grab
    anyone's property for the purpose of economic development is horrific,
    though not, if one lives in the Fort Worth area, unexpected.  Too
    well do many of us recall the township of Hurst exercising eminent
    domain to take homes in a perfectly nice, long established, middle
    class neighborhood so as to expand the parking lot at Northeast Mall.

    Can you imagine losing your home of thirty years to a mall parking lot?  

    The area to be bulldozed in New London includes "Victorian-era houses and small businesses that in some instances have
    been owned by several generations of families. Among the New London
    residents in the case is a couple in their 80s who have lived in the
    same home for more than 50 years." (

    Think about it.  We are none of us safe. Oh, the people living in
    big, expensive houses in ritzy neighborhoods are probably okay, but the
    rest of us?  Such as those of us who live a block off a major
    street and close to commercially zoned property already?  Our days
    could be numbered.

    The opportunities for bribery, graft and other malfeasance seems
    unlimited now.  Wonder what a city council member's vote will go
    for, once the big money developers get into gear?