Friday, March 30, 2012

Business Travel Guy

It is amazing how quickly I adapt and become a stereotype.  Having worked in local government for my professional career, I really did not do much business travel.   Upon the change of job a year ago, I have had opportunities to travel more often.

This month I found myself like every other generic business traveler, on the floor of DFW Airport due to the need for a power outlet.   I am not as special as I often think I am.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Little Mower

I discovered this a few weekends ago that Aedan has never seen a push-mower.  He asked his Suey, “What kind of mower is that?”     He was fascinated by the mower and wanted to help.   I wager the spinning wheel that pulls the grass to the blade added to the entertainment value.
I assume it is built in foreshadowing in the blog; Aedan did get bored with mowing in short order.  I am sure the fact that there were no bubbles involved with the mower played a significant role.

Thursday, March 22, 2012


I read the comics.  Some people call it the funnies.  The only reason I still get paper thrown to the house is for the comics.   Before the age of the internet, in college I would take study breaks in the library and scour papers from all over the country for new comics I have never read.    Thanks to the internet, I find new ones easier.  I now follow some comics on the internet because they have not been picked up or may have been dropped by my paper.

March 21, 2012’s Frazz, hit home after my bike ride.  I wanted to include it my blog about how my ride in Austin was not like that at all.   I will have to save that for another time.  It started an interesting email exchange between the artist, Jef Mallett and his syndicate.   I did not want to receive a notification from a lawyer that I was infringing on copyright laws.

I was in total comic fan geekdom.  Jef email was friendly and he let me know about what was coming in March 22, 2012's strip.   He is having fun with another comic artist I also read, Stephan Pastis whose strip is Pears Before Swine.   I learned that one of the reoccurring characters in Pearls Before Swine is targeted at Jef.  I love being informed about an inside joke.

I am very concerned about the newspaper comic business model.  One of Pastis' rants in his strips is how stagnate the comics are in the paper.  It is must be tough to even be noticed by a syndicate to have your strip picked up.  In addition, as papers are shrinking in size, there is less room from them to be printed.  Papers do not want to take risks with new comics is my assumption.  Ultimately, I am concerned that their true medium will go away.

Consider this a plea from a guy who wants to still read the comics.   Please go read them and create traffic on comic websites, particularly

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Marty Purks

As I continue my Lenten journey of attending mass, it really seems appropriate that I had dinner with Marty Purks when I was in Williamsburg, Virginia on business last week.

I was one of the many high school students at Heidleberg American High School that participated in Marty's and his wife Carolyn’s Club Beyond, a Young Life Ministry in the early 1980s.  Through the magic of Facebook I found him again.  This was actually the second dinner I have had with him in the past year.

Marty now works for Intervarsity Christian Fellowship at William and Mary University in Williamsburg.  When I was there last fall, I put it together and we made contact.   Marty, Carolyn and I had a wonderful dinner catching up over 25 years of our lives.  We touch based on our common friends.

At that dinner last fall, of course, we reviewed my estranged spiritual walk.   It really began me thinking about my need to actually attend church.  It is clear that attendance to church does not make a member of the faithful, but it is a part.

Last week, I got to let Marty know where my kick start of attending church came from. In the end, as I told Marty, I have enjoyed that dumb luck, fate, or divine intervention that have allowed us to visit and reconnect.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Format Change

Those that read the blog on a regular basis can tell that I updated the presentation of the blog.   I think it looks a little more professional now.

The reason is that whoever is reading this is actually clicking on the ads.   I put the ads on the blog as a whim.  Google does some kind of algorithm on what I write and puts the appropriate ad in the space.  I get to filter out certain ads.  It is clear by the ads I write about family, cycling, running and scouting.  Shocking I know.

That being said, the minimal amount of money that has come in due to the ads has technically made me a professional writer.  So now that I am big time, I felt it was time for an upgrade.

Oddly, this small amount of money has seemed to motivate me to make sure I am updating my blog.  So click away!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Dalworthington Gardens

I have had this post written in the back of my head since last summer.  It was supposed to follow my post about Al Taub.   Therefore, it is a little late.
Nineteen years ago this month, I started working for the City of Dalworthington Gardens.  Two years later I bought a house inside my little City, and four years after that, Carol made it our home.   I am blessed to have fallen into this lovely little city in Tarrant County.    Though being a member of its staff and a citizen, it is an integral part of my life.
Carol actually has been involved with the City of Dalworthington Gardens longer than I have, since she worked for the City’s engineering firm prior to my arrival.   TNP designed the water system that attached the City to the City of Fort Worth water system.   Carol’s handy work can be seen on all the water tanks.   She designed the famous DWG logo.
Our influence over the city does not end there.  Tamara and David submitted the design for the street sign topper that is now in use all over the City.

Fate brought me to DWG and it has rewarded me for staying.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Texas Tech at TCU

Carol and I took Aedan to his first Tech sporting event this past Sunday.  A good friend let me have some of his tickets.

The weather was perfect and the seats were awesome.    Aedan understands baseball enough to enjoy the game.  We went for a walk, showed up just in time to bounce in bounce house before it was deflated.   The seats were right next to the TCU bullpen and at the end of the game, a TCU catcher gave Aedan a ball.  Aedan felt he should throw it back, but after much convincing from his Suey, he determined it was a good thing.

Unfortunately, the Red Raiders lost.  What is disconcerting to me is not that they lost a close pitching duel (2-1), but the fact that I have not seen any Red Raider team win any game since January 1, 2011.  This is becoming too much of a trend.

Friday, March 9, 2012

My turn

I suppose this is vaguely a work related post, but definitely the way I see the world.  I am always fascinated by how people get wound up over traffic tickets.  Over the course of driving over a year, people speed, roll stop signs, fail to signal, cross solid white lines, run red lights, etc. and fail to get a ticket. 

When you do get a ticket, the law of large numbers has caught up with you.  Even in the remote chance, that this was one the one time the officer was mistaken, why fight it?  I know those that will go to the mat over principle. In the end, how much is your time worth? Please note; Carol fought a ticket and won, so there is merit to this approach.

I just view it as my turn. Thanks to a City of Fort Worth Stop Light Camera my turn was apparently February 15, 2012.   Lucky for me this is actually a civil matter and only $75.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Boston Marathon Qualifying Time

I am a goal driven person.  In the recesses of my minds when I started to run, the goal of actual qualifying for the Boston Marathon was rolling around.  When I did my first and only marathon in 2007, I did it in 4:23:18 seconds.   At the time, I would have had to take an hour and 3 minutes off my time to qualify.   Therefore, I did not think it was realistic.

In the meantime, Boston has made qualifying tougher, but I also have gotten older, so the 2013 Qualifying time from my age is 3:25 minutes.  So now, I have to take 56 minutes off my time.   Although this does not sound realistic, I also weighed 243 pounds when I did the Marathon.

If you were double my half in Austin this past February (which was 1:43:17) I would miss qualifying by 3 minutes.  Suddenly the goal seems realistic.   I will need to knock off another 12 minutes off my half time in order to give it back the second half.  My thought is if I get down to my ideal weight, I should be able to do this.

After cycling season this fall, I will start formalizing my training plans.  I do have a plan if I do qualify.   My Cousin Eric, his wife Tracy and his boys will have company. 

Friday, March 2, 2012


I am a cradle Roman Catholic.  The last twenty years or so have not been a practicing Catholic.   I usually give something up for Lent, but unless my parents are in town, somebody is getting married or somebody is being buried, I do not attend Mass.    This has been bothering me for a while now, so for Lent this year I am making an effort to attend Mass in addition to giving up alcohol.

I confused some friends and coworkers when they saw me on Ash Wednesday, but I even made to Mass the following weekend.  I have elected to go to Saturday Vigil mass, but it is still mass.

I know I will have a margarita when Lent is over, the question will be:  Will I still go to Mass?