Well folks, I'm sunburned and all pooped out now, but I had a great weekend. My father-in-law took my sons camping, and my wife and I joined her roller-derby friends at a rented house in New Braunfels for a group vacation. After hours of driving the backroads of Texas' Hill Country, we arrived Thursday night, and hung out, drinking beer and telling stories. It was there that I was given my official roller derby name. As a non-skating participant (videographer), I didn't choose my name; it was forced upon me. Although the name was not insulting, it's not fit to print here, but for the weekend, I was not Steve, I was B.D. (to use the initials).
On Friday and Saturday, I floated down the Guadalupe river on a big black inner-tube that had a plastic bottom attached with straps around it. Friday's float was mostly a nice, relaxing one with just a few of the group there. Fluffy (my wife) had decided to join Tata and her husband Captain Motorboater in a pilgrimage to a semi-famous barbecue joint in Lockhart, so I joined with a group of her friends that I had just met, and didn't have my wife as a crutch. I know it may be hard to believe, but I'm not naturally social, and I typically will try to blend into the scenery when I'm in a place where I don't know anyone. But something about this group really made me feel at ease— and I can see why Fluffy likes them so much.
We had no sooner launched ourselves into the water Friday afternoon, when the clouds opened up and deluged us with cold, annoying, driving rain. Yet, we were there to get wet anyhow, and the rain did finally give way to sunshine only a short time later. We only floated for 2 or 3 hours Friday, on a wide, slow part of the river, where there was only one "rapid", which was a man-made dam with one spillway just a little deeper than the others.
Friday night was another night of drinking and partying at the house, but I only had a few and went to bed early. Fluffy and I had our own bedroom, which was only separated from the front porch by a window, so we got to hear all the drama well into the night. It seems one of the girls there had gotten drunk and inappropriate (even for this crowd) and her boyfriend basically broke up with her there in a loud argument.
I was surprisingly energetic Saturday morning. Fluffy didn't sleep well because several scorpions had been spotted in the house, and one person had been stung. She says she kept imagining them crawling on her in the bed. We all grabbed our gear and headed down to one of the local outfitters, Gruene River Company. They supplied the tubes, and the transportation up-river from their location in Gruene. We rode an old beat-up short school bus, towing a beat-up trailer full of inner tubes and inflatable rafts and kayaks.
So, I think there were about 21 of us there for what I am now calling the "clusterfloat". Once we launched, on what was supposed to be a 4-hour float, we tried to stay connected as a group - either by holding onto one another's tubes, or lashing them together with rope like Fluffy and I did. We rented an extra tube to put our small cooler in. The first half of the float was pretty nice and relaxing - even if a little loud at times from the cackling of some of the more talkative girls. There were a few mild rapids to go through, and they were mostly fun. At best, you got accelerated forward and bounced around a bit, and at worst, the plastic bottom of the tube would catch on some of the rocks, and you would have to stand up and take your tube forward or to another part of the current.
The not-so-fun part of Saturday's adventure was toward the end, when we went down this rapid that really was too dangerous to do in tubes. It was one of these things where we didn't know the river, and didn't know what was ahead until it was too late. It was so loud with the rushing water that we couldn't even hear others warn us. I don't know for sure what the drop was, but Fluffy and I think it was 10 - 15 feet over the course of maybe 50 feet of boulders. I damned near came out of my tube, and several people did. The woman in front of me did come out of hers, and got her leg bashed against one of the rocks. Somehow I managed to stay on, and she didn't drown. One of the guys was thrown out of his tube, hit his head, and was pulled under for a bit.
We got everyone's tubes back to them and regrouped after that. Then the river went into wide, slow mode for awhile, and it seemed like the wind was blowing us upriver as hard as the current was trying to take us down. We had to paddle just to keep moving. I think quite a few of the folks considered themselves to be done with tubing after that rapid. But the only way out was to continue on until we reached the outfitter's place along the river, so that last couple hours seemed like it took forever. My arms are worn out from that. Also toward the end, it became apparent that I didn't apply enough sunscreen to my legs, which began to burn. I did put some on, but I think it was too late.
After what seemed like forever, we got back to the tube place and returned our tubes. The consensus was that short floats are good, long floats are bad. My thought was that I want to do this again, but in a kayak instead of a tube. And even though it may look goofy, I'd want to wear a helmet.
Saturday night, Fluffy and I went out by ourselves and ate dinner at a Mexican place in Gruene, which was just awesome. We got a good night's sleep Saturday night, and left fairly early on Sunday to come back.
Donation to support grant program for local community improvement project
Keep Lewisville Beautiful and the Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation (LCEF) today announced a major gift in support of Keep Lewisville Beautiful’s mission to empower the citizens of Lewisville through education to take greater responsibility for enhancing their community environment and engage individuals in local community improvement and environmental projects.
The Lowe’s/Keep America Beautiful Community Improvement Grant of $5,000 is one of 120 merit-based grants awarded nationally to support grassroots community improvement projects ranging from community gardens and tree plantings to litter and debris cleanups, recycling programs, park and playground restorations and beautification efforts.
By Jim Collier Many people take advantage of the prescription drug promotions provided by major grocery chains such as Tom Thumb-Safeway-Randall and Kroger that result in savings on gasoline purchases.
Tom Thumb has offered a ten cent per gallon discount for each two prescriptions obtained at their pharmacies. Until sometime in May there was no other requirement. Due to some bureaucrat determining this is a “kickback,” this Rewards Program has been discontinued for Medicare Part D, Medicaid, and any other federally affiliated participants. Those participants include virtually every Medicare recipient in the United States.
If this is not an example of the bureaucratic bungling common to our federal and corporate legal officials it is nothing at all. The result is blatant age discrimination and another reach into the wallets of the most vulnerable part of our populace.
A call to Kroger Headquarters had an unpleasant outcome. When the Customer Service Representative was asked how participation in the Prescription Rewards Program could be construed as the criminal act of accepting a kickback, her reply was, “Of course it’s criminal.” The Customer Service Representatives of both corporations stated the programs were discontinued due to an interpretation of the Federal Anti-Kickback Law. This is a stretch for even the rather obtuse minds inhabiting the Federal legal community. The question begs: How can a discount for using a Loyalty Rewards Program be equated to a criminal bribery payoff?
DENTON DOES ROLLER DERBY North Texas Derby Revolution hosts first bout in new location!
On Saturday June 30, 2012, NTDR will be holding their first bout at House of Quad, the new all-derby facility located at 222 S. Mayhill Rd in Denton, Texas (formerly Hat Trick Hockey).
Doors open at 6:00, with a starting whistle at 6:30. This kicks off a double-header that includes an important match between the Main St Mafia and the Hickory St Hooligans. If the Mafia win, they will be guaranteed a spot in the season championship in July. If Hooligans win, it will come down to a matter of point spreads: Muertas Locas have 2 wins, Mafia 2, and Hooligans 1, so it is still anyone's game! All events are BYOB (no glass, 21+ only with alcohol please) and BYO chair. Tickets available soon through www.brownpapertickets.com. Children 12 and under are free. Join skaters and fans for the after party at the Abbey Underground on the historic Denton Square.
For this bout, NTDR will be supporting the Russ Martin Listeners Foundation, a DFW-based group which supports the families of police and firefighters who have fallen in the line of duty. NTDR will give a portion of game proceeds to this charity, while fans will have an opportunity to learn more about them and donate as well. Visit http://www.russmartin.com/httpdocs/listeners_foundation.asp for more information.
House of Quad oversees NTDR women's roller derby, Denton County Outlaws men's roller derby, and Rolling Rebellion junior (unisex) derby. The sport of roller derby has been growing quickly around the world, and HOQ has put Denton and North Texas on the map with 3 leagues and a new derby-only facility.
In last night's Lewisville City Council meeting, the Council voted unanimously to contest the expansion:
MOTION: Upon a motion made by Councilman Ferguson and seconded by Deputy Mayor Pro Tem Vaughn, the Council voted five (5) “ayes” and no (0) “nays” to authorize the City's legal counsel to pursue all actions necessary, including filing suit, to ensure that the Camelot Landfill complies with State and Federal Law in its current operations and to contest the expansion of the landfill.The motion carried.
At the time of our last article, City Manager Claude King had hinted at opposition by the city, saying that it would require a new specific use permit - which the city has not granted.
Reached for comment today, Councilman TJ Gilmore offered this statement: "Council objects to the expansion and we are exercising our legal options to ensure public safety and confirm that the landfill as stands is not contaminating the Elm Fork."
BossKitty at TruthHugger is ashamed that America's leaders find it expedient to hand the reins of Public Education over to corporate interests. Education is designed to show us what is already known, and guide us to discover what we need to know. But. that interferes with the bottom line - Climate Change – America’s Leaders Paid To Mislead.
Poor Seamus the dog was NOT the only car-roof victim of Mitt Romney's abuse that terrible day in 1983, and PDiddie at Brains and Eggs has video from the archives of the New Hampshire State Police that prove it.
At TexasKaos, Lightseeker reports on two "drive me crazy” primary outcomes now that the primary electoral smoke has cleared. There is A Conversation We Need to Have about the once and future fate of the Texas Democratic Party and by extension all Progressive efforts here in the state.
Slugs attack mushrooms in this time-lapse video produced by my son. You have to see this; it's amazing how these things attack the mushrooms like a swarm. He had been trying to just capture the mushroom's rapid growth, and was really surprised the next morning reviewing the tape. Future filmmaker, this one. He's got a whole series of gardening videos.
A McKinney man thought police and the dollar store were conspiring against him, so he set the place on fire. Just glad the guy didn't have a gun. Public mental health services are important, and probably have huge payback to society in spite of the cost.
A recent article in the Dallas Morning News pointed out that although Texas police agencies had until October 15th, 2011 to report the number of rape kits they had in evidence that had not been DNA tested, most police departments had missed the deadline.
Both Dallas and Fort Worth had missed the deadline, established by the Texas Legislature, but Lewisville was not specifically mentioned in the article. We inquired with the City of Lewisville today about whether the Lewisville Police Department had submitted the report.
The City Attorney's office responded today that until LTJ brought the Dallas Morning News article to their attention, they had not been aware that a report was due, in spite of DPS' claim that they sent a reminder letter. The police department is currently working on gathering the information, and will submit the report to DPS once it is completed. Staff were not sure how long it would take to complete the report, but said they would release a copy to us when it was submitted.
Decorating with color can be a fun and exciting way to express your personality, style and creativity. The right color can transform a boring, non-descript room into a welcoming and livable space. Fear of color and the lack of color knowledge prevent many homeowners from incorporating color into their home’s décor.
Choosing a paint color for a space is not as daunting as it sounds. The room’s size, its’ purpose and the atmosphere you are trying to create should be taken into consideration when choosing a paint color. For example, the color red is perfect for formal dining spaces. It is a color that stimulates the appetite and encourages warm conversations.
Here's more about Judge Trey Loftin, who bragged in campaign literature about his rulings in the Lipsky case in his court. Loftin tolerated a SLAPP lawsuit against a homeowner who posted video of his well water burning after Range Resources drilled a gas well nearby.
Councilman TJ Gilmore has thoughts on his blog about the last City Council meeting. He corrected Councilman Gorena's errant attribution of an invocation to Thomas Jefferson. More importantly though, he has an update on the budget, and those numbers look good.
KDAF has two stories about Lewisville High School:
One about Lewisville High School's Killough campus, and the success of its "Block lunch" program that gives the kids a full hour for lunch, and lets them catch up on homework, or participate in tutoring or club activities. This past year, at Durham, my kids got only 30 minutes for lunch, often not getting through the cafeteria line with enough time to finish their food before the period was over. Then at the end of the day, they had a 30 minute waste of time called "dragon time" where they go to a classroom and just sit there without instruction. Supposedly it's a place to do homework. Here's another about the demolition and rebuilding of Lewisville High School.
Another reminder about the INSIDE LISD program. We really hope a lot of our readers will participate in this excellent opportunity for free education on the workings of a school district. Future school board members, state reps, involved parents, and community activists need to attend this.
Black folks might be interested to know that Tea Party racist Congressman Joe Walsh think that blacks are dependent on the government. Yes, y'all are incapable of making the best choices at the ballot box based on what you think is right for America. You only do it because you think Democrats are going to give you the biggest handout. People who believe this stupid meme lack intelligence.