Month: February 2008

  • Well, I didn't get to meet him but I did get to see and hear him, and take pictures.

    This afternoon Mike Huckabee was in Fort Worth, down in the Stockyards area, so I corralled the boys and off we went.

    Once parked it wasn't a chore to pick out where he'd be, i.e. in front
    of the Live Stock Exchange building.  The news truck and ring of
    cameras was a big clue.  ;^)


    Since we weren't precisely certain when Gov. Huckabee would arrive, but
    being anxious to snag a good spot for myself, I released the boys to go
    off and stroll about on their own, as Joe had never been there before.  While waiting, the crowd watched some folks practicing their roping skills, as the governor had expressed a desire to have a crack at it:


    It was only a few minutes, though, when the cheers began as Gov. Huckabee arrived:



    He took some questions from the press, then tried his hand at lassoing the plastic cow's head:


    He wasn't particularly good at it, but his wife, Janet (in the mauve) managed quite well, deftly roping it on her second attempt.  Then the governor moved away, and the crowd dispersed to be able to see the daily cattle drive that comes down Exchange Avenue.  I quickly caught up with the boys:


    And here come the longhorns!


    I was rather hoping they'd come charging down the street, but the truth is, it was more of an amble.

    Don't suppose many people would turn out for a Cattle Amble, though. 

    It was most interesting, and I'm glad we went!  If only Huckabee can win Texas on Tuesday....wouldn't that make the news media look no-how? 

    I'm always up for making the news media look no-how. 

  • I don't usually write gripey emails to news sites, but made an exception this time.

    It's utterly humiliating that the news black-out regarding Prince Harry's presence in Afghanistan was broken by an American "news" site. 

    The Sludgereport.  Big surprise. 

    Way to go, creepazoids.  For the sake of scooping the story, y'all put Prince Harry and his unit at even higher risk than they were already. 

    What a bunch of losers. 

  • Jehovah-Jireh, The LORD will provide -- William Cowper

    The saints should never be dismayed,
    Nor sink in hopeless fear;
    For when they least expect his aid,
    The Savior will appear.

    This Abraham found, he raised the knife,
    GOD saw, and said, "Forbear;"
    Yon ram shall yield his meaner life,
    Behold the victim there.

    Once David seemed Saul's certain prey,
    But hark! the foe's at hand;
    Saul turns his arms another way,
    To save th' invaded land.

    When Jonah sunk beneath the wave
    He thought to rise no more;
    But God prepared a fish to save,
    And bear him to the shore.

    Blest proofs of pow'r and grace divine,
    That meet us in his word!
    May every deep-felt care of mine
    Be trusted with the Lord.

    Wait for his seasonable aid,
    And though it tarry wait:
    The promise may be long-delayed,
    But cannot come too late.

    ======   Olney Hymns  ======

  • Goodness, I have been a silent Sally, haven't I?

    Let's see.  A week ago today Dmitry and Dan came out from the back, urging Don and me to come outside for "a surprise".

    Surprise indeed!  There was a strange car out there, and from it emerged Joe, Dan's brother! 

    I stopped, stared madly, then clambered down the front steps yelping "Joe!  Joe!  Joe!" 

    Naturally Dmitry, with his inimitable timing, chose that evening to come down with The Crud, waking up on Sunday morning with a fever of 104.6.  e-faint   He was snuffling and sneezing and coughing....a miserable sight, to be sure.  Fortunately Tylenol brought the fever down to a more manageable 102, so he wasn't feeling quite so wretched.  In fact, he felt improved enough to believe he was going to go with Dan and Joe to visit their friend, Viktor, and was slightly put out when I firmly vetoed that idea.  Gee, Dmitry, I can't imagine why you'd think there's a problem with you going over to visit other people even though you feel better.  Moms are just so darn unreasonable, aren't they?

    A day or two later, Dan complained of a headache, began coughing, and running a fever.  As of last night, he's still under the weather.  So far Joe's escaped it, but we'll see.

    On Thursday morning I drove out to St. Elizabeth Ann Seton's, where Kirstin's children go to church and Kirstin has a p/t job in the Christan Education office, to collect Bryson and take him back to their home for a few hours (he'd have come back here except Dan's ill and we didn't want to risk Bryson catching it).  He wasn't on board with this plan, however, clinging like a limpet to his mother's leg, and only being - reluctantly - moved to come along with Gran by the holding out of a box of Girl Scout's Thin Mints as a lure.

    As Bryson-bait, Thin Mints work a treat.

    Gave him the box to hold in the car, and a couple of cookies as soon as we hit the house.  He helped himself to another two or three after that, so I carefully pushed the open sleeve back far enough on the counter that he couldn't reach it.

    Later on when it was almost time to leave to return him to Kirstin up at the church I made a visit to the necessary.  I swear I wasn't in there more than a few minutes, and had left Bryson placidly watching one of his shows.

    The boy must have been biding his time, for when I came out it was to find him seated at the table in the breakfast nook, the unopened sleeve of Thin Mints in his left hand (the empty box on the table), a pair of child's scissors in his right hand, bits of silver paper bearing witness to his attempt to gain access to the coveted cookies, and a face that was an absolute picture of guilt.  e-hairout

    He's a severe naughtiness, he is.  A cute naughtiness, but still....a naughtiness. 

    On Wednesday Don flew up to Washington D.C. for a class to be certified to sell some fancy-schmancy Microsoft video conference equipment.  He said it was cold, and lightly snowing part of the time.  The place he and Hugh - a tech from the company Don works for - stayed was actually in Hearndon, VA, but after class on Thursday the two of them drove into DC proper so Hugh could see the various monuments, the National Mall, etc.  He'd never been there before so it'd have been a pity for him to have missed them.  Don arrived back home late last night.

    And that's pretty much the week.  I'll try to do better about updating during the next one. 

  • It finally happened.

    Received earlier today:

    agricola) Smart Investors alert
    Can't go wrong with GSI Securitization, ticker GSII
    Stock is pure winner

    Yes, it's another badly spelled bit of spam, which itself isn't unusual.  What sets it apart is where it arrived...

    As a text message to my cell phone.  e-afdbsmiley

  • Well, Dmitry finally has Valentine's Day in his rear view mirror.

    This was his first time to have a sweet babboo at Valentine's Day, and he swiftly realized it's a Big Deal to teenage girls here.

    Expectations were high, he feared, and he was anxious not to blow this.  A few days ago we were in Tom Thumb (a "Safeway" grocery store) and he was examining the roses, as those are Carolyn's favorite flower, and making sure I understood it's red roses I should get on Valentine's Day (while he's at school; he didn't want to get them the day before, wanting them to be fresh, but OTOH, he didn't want to get them after he's out of school on The Day for fear of their either being gone or picked over).  He carefully chose a card for her.  He already had a box of candy (red heart-shaped box decked in a black faux-leather jacket, reminiscent of Dmitry's).  As we walked through the store he kept spying possible additional gifts, to my combined consternation and annoyance, as it seemed to me what he had - plus the dinner out on The Night - was sufficient for a 17 year old boy to give his girlfriend.

    Naturally he picked up on this, so the suggestions came fast and furious, becoming more silly by the minute.    ("Donuts?  Hot dogs?")

    At last it was Valentine's Day afternoon and he was waiting for Carolyn to arrive.  One slight hitch was revealed when she came, as she'd been driven over by her sister who had camera in hand, prepared to take photos of them, and she cried, "But you're not dressed yet!" when she saw Dmitry.

    Well, yeah, he was in his school clothes of a black polo shirt and black slacks...what's wrong with that?  Perfectly suitable for the restaurant where he had reservations.

    Trouble is, Carolyn's family had somehow gotten the idea he was taking her to the Reata, an upscale, fairly pricey restaurant in one of the downtown high-rise buildings. 

    Um, no.  They're going to the Italian Inn in Ridglea, with the singing waiters, etc.  Very traditional spot for Valentine's Day, prom nights, anniversaries, and so on, but not nearly as expensive or fancy.  We felt bad about the miscommunication, for that must have been a bit of a let down for her....expecting the Reata and getting the Italian Inn.  Apparently when extending the invitation Dmitry couldn't recall the name of the restaurant - though what on earth is hard about "Italian Inn" I cannot imagine, but that's Dmitry for you - and that allowed imagination to fill in the blank.

    She took the change with good grace, however, observing that at least she needn't change into the dress she'd brought to wear.  Unfortunately the only shoes she had were black high heels, and she was carrying them by the time I collected them from Border's Books (which is where I took them after their dinner, as they're both book store enthusiasts and he wanted to buy her a couple of anime books to complete the Valentine's Day festivities).

    Still, they seemed to have a good time and Carolyn was, I believe, pleased with the various gifts with which Dmitry had showered her. 

    At last he can relax. 

    Well, until April, which holds both her birthday and their one-year anniversary. 

  • How to make darn good basketball players feel like chump change...

    The Dallas Mavericks hierarchy is almost foaming at the mouth in its anxiety to get hold of Jason Kidd again (he was here back in the mid-90's), and so great is their hysteria that they've offered the Nets six Mavericks - including Jerry Stackhouse, for crying out loud, Devin Harris, and Devean George - PLUS two draft picks PLUS three million smackers.

    Don't those six Maverick players feel special tonight? 

  • Goodness, has it really been almost a week since my last post?

    And the topic came to me courtesy of Dan.

    Tah-dah!  He sent me this cool photo of a sunset at the North Pole:


    The big thing is the moon, you see.  Isn't that something?  To think that views and scenes such as this are occurring all the time around the universe?

    And I'd just like someone to try to tell me THAT moon is actually the same size as it'd be higher in the sky, and it's just the horizon that makes it look so big.

    Don't believe it when it's the full moon rising over downtown Fort Worth, and wouldn't believe it of the moon at the North Pole, either. 

  • Have y'all seen this guy's surreal 3D pavement art?

    Dan pointed this site out to me, having come across it during an architectural theory (I think that's right) class he took awhile back.  It's an artist by the name of Julian Beever who, among other things, creates three-dimensional chalk drawings on pavement.  Here are a few:



    It's all about proportion, and only works when viewed from a particular angle, otherwise it's all whoppyjawed.


    There are lots more, including a couple of "wrong" views, which are fascinating in themselves.  Amazing that something drawn so it looks so strange in one direction, looks perfectly normal from another.