Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Fall Down, Go Boom

Wednesday the 18th of January was not quite the night I expected. Here are some things I learned:

- Rolling to a stop (from 45mph in this case) feels different when there are no wheels involved.

- Paramedics can have a sense of humor.

- Ambulances look clean from the stretcher because of the bright lights overhead, which you are forced to look at due to the collar.

- The ER doctor won't come into the room unless you are passed out, but they will still charge you for it.

- When it is time for the road grime to be scraped from your wounds, they send in the lowest paid person possible, except for the janitor maybe.

- Drugs can make the world a happy place (for a while)

- Everyone everywhere has some relative who was killed or maimed on a motorcycle, and they want you to know about it.

After clinic on the 18th I had to go out to the parking lot to move my bike. Unfortunately I failed to notice that I left the parking light on. When I came out to leave an hour and a half later, I saw my error. I decided to take the long way home once I got it to start. That way I could charge the battery up a bit.

As I pulled up to wait at a light, the railroad lights started to flash and the safety arms for the crossing came down. I decided to take a left and go the long way 'round my long way home. This new route would take me past A&M's campus.

I turned right (west) onto George Bush Dr., crossed over the railroad tracks, which had no train on it at this end, and accelerated to the posted speed limit of 45 mph. Traffic up to this point had been moderate, but all of the traffic that was moving in my direction seemed to be making the left to go to McDonald's. I was the only person continuing west on GB Dr.

There is a street which passes behind the McDonald's. It is a T-intersection without a light. A young lady pulled out from the cross street to the left, crossed over the eastbound traffic side, and got to the median where she paused for a moment. Unfortunately, her pause didn't allow her the ability to see through solid objects. I saw her pause, but only the front fender. The vehicles in the left turn lane were blocking her line of sight in my direction. She pulled out thinking that all was clear. All I saw was the back of her head. I thought she was pulling out to head west on GB Dr., but this is where I misread the situation. While I was trying to give her room on the road, she was trying to get to the right turn lane, four lanes over. She didn't look my way until I made contact with her car. The impact was just in front of her right front wheel.

The time from when I saw her front bumper to the time I made contact with her car was just over a second. If she had looked my way for a moment, this whole thing could have been avoided. If she had tapped the brakes a little bit, I could have made it around her. My swerve to the right wasn't aggressive since I thought (and I am no mind reader) she was heading my way. If I had swerved more aggressively, I would probably have been under her tires instead.

I did not understand the interactions at that intersection. I am not in that part of town very often. I didn't understand what was out there. Next to the McDonald's is a large student housing complex. The right turn lane (the lane to my right) is there to get students on campus. Do the math folks. mollo and I went out the next day and dozens of cars and trucks did the same thing this lady had done the night before.

The best response probably should have been maximum braking. Hindsight is 20/20 afterall. If I had used braking, I could have reduced the speed of the contact. I probably would have still hit her car, but the damage to me and the bike may have been reduced. As it is, we will never know.

I caught a glimpse of her face as I passed over the hood. I don't know if she had connected with the situation. I hit the ground and knew this was going to hurt. After the fourth roll I realized that I still had momentum and quite a lot of speed to scrub off. The chin of my helmet had been pushed to my chest. I tried to make sure my arms and hands were close to my body so they weren't being slapped into the ground repeatedly. I was going to bring my legs together a bit, but when I tried to pull them in, my left one hurt a lot. I just had to leave them out there and hope for the best.

When I stopped rolling, I wondered if I should be happy or upset that I had been conscious through the whole thing and still was. I came to rest against the curb, my left arm and leg over the curb as if I were spooning it. I tried to move but found it very painful. I took inventory of what I could tell was wrong before trying to roll onto my back again. My left knee was screaming at this point. I think I hit it against the car before going over the hood. Great way to start. My right leg hurt and I wanted to get off that side to try and relieve the pain.

As I finally rolled onto my back, I heard people's footsteps and chatter. I could swear there were a hundred people shouting that a man on a motorcycle had been hit. There were quickly three people standing in my field of view who had cell phones, each saying to the others that they had 911 on the phone. I was trying to take inventory again and get my left leg in a comfortable position (I am still trying to find one!)

One of the people put her phone down after a bit and squatted next to me. She was in tears, sobbing and apologetic. I couldn't help feel sorry for her. She had been through something very traumatic. I put my (injured) right hand on her knee and told her that everything would be ok. The doctors would fix me up and we would all be up and around in no time. It's going to be alright. (can you say ironic?)

A girl on my left side helped me take off my gloves, unzip my coat, and unstrap my helmet while I listened to the approaching sirens in the distance. For some strange reason I was suddenly worried about the paramedics cutting my gear off me. It has to be replaced anyway.

When they got there, the medics asked if anyone had seen the accident. I couldn't see anything but straight up in the air, but I knew at least 3 people were there. We were blocking traffic. There had to be more. Another medic started cutting and ripping my pants around my knees. He needs to work on his bedside manner. You don't say to the guy laying in the road, "You look pretty messed up here." Shouldn't it be, "It'll be ok. We'll have you patched up in no time."?

I started to relax at this point. The professionals were on the job. Good response time too. I got a collar put on and loaded in the ambulance. They grabbed the bag in the road but left the other bag strapped to the bike to be towed. That one had my homework. (One of my teachers said that was the first missing homework excuse she had heard and would accept!) Once we were underway, I called mollo with my cell phone and said, "Sorry I am so late getting home. Guess where I am. I'm in the back of an ambulance on my way to the hospital." We didn't talk long since the phone battery was nearly dead. I was just glad it still worked.

I won't bore you with the hospital stuff. I got there, x-rays, nothing broken, surprised nothing is broken, Doc gives me a pat on the head and vicodin, and says take care lucky. Bye-bye.

A cop came to see me at the hospital. He told me the bike slid 85 feet. I didn't make it that far. He didn't mention how far I went, but it looked like the bike was 10-12 meters or so past me.

Gear works. Nothing broken, 'cept my pride. Sore everywhere.

Bike's a total loss. The shop quit writing the estimate when it exceeded the original MSRP. (Why do parts cost more than the whole?)

Video of the crash area. Sorry it's sideways. Not sure how to change that. (7 Mb)

PowerPoint of the crash scene and resulting damage. Photos are not the best as we used a borrowed digital camera and aren't fully up to speed on the finer points of operation. (21 Mb)

UPDATE 27 Jan 06: I picked up the police report yesterday. Yes, she got a ticket, and she says that one of the drivers from the left turn lane waved her across. I guess that always makes it ok to proceed with your back turned to the other 3 oncoming traffic lanes.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

No more finger pointing here

Another case where people just thought of themselves and were out to get millions from some invisible big CEO who could afford it. Instead, work hours were cut and people laid off because of two greedy people. These two got what they deserved:

From the Houston Chronicle:

SAN JOSE, Calif. — A couple who planted a severed finger in a bowl of Wendy'schili in a scheme to extort money from the fast-food chain were sentenced todayto prison terms of nine years and more than 12 years.

Anna Ayala, 40, who said she bit into the digit, was sentenced to nine years in state prison. Her husband, Jaime Plascencia, 44, who obtained the finger from a co-worker who lost it in a workplace accident, was sentenced to more than 12 years. The pair pleaded guilty Sept. 9 to conspiracy to file a false insurance claim and attempted grand theft with damages exceeding $2.5 million.

Ayala said she retched March 22 after biting into the fingertip while dining with her family at a Wendy's in San Jose.

Although authorities suspected a hoax — in part because the finger was not cooked — word of the stomach-turning find quickly spread around the world. The Dublin, Ohio-based fast food chain claimed it lost $2.5 million in sales because of the bad publicity, and dozens of workers at the company's Northern California franchises were laid off.

No Wendy's employee was missing a digit at the San Jose restaurant, and no chili suppliers reported finger injuries at their plants.

In April, Ayala was arrested at her suburban Las Vegas home. Investigators found a pattern of legal claims she brought against businesses in her name or for her children.

A lengthy search for the finger's owner eventually pointed to one of Plascencia's co-workers, who lost it in an accident at the paving company where they worked, police said.

Plascencia bought the tip of Brian Rossiter's right ring finger for $100 and told him what he and Ayala were plotting, according to court documents. Rossiter later told police the couple offered him $250,000 to keep quiet.

During a recorded jailhouse phone call, Ayala bragged about how other inmates were asking for her autograph, according to a transcript of the call.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006


I am in an extreme amount of pain right now.

I went to the doctor today for the the first time in years. The last time I went I had strep throat and thought I was dying. My fever was through the roof, my throat was pained, and something was wrong with my hands.

Now, four years later, I've got strep throat again. I woke up Sunday morning with an extremely pained throat. Ouch. Yesterday I had a small fever and hubby said he couldn't see any puss pockets on my throat. If he had seen them, I would have gone in immeadiately. Well, I went today and it cost a bundle. With a cash discount, they only charged me $113 for the appointment and strep test. OUCH. Then I had to go and pay about $30 for the two prescriptions.

Right now it's 7pm and I'm waiting for the doctor to call me back. I've taken every OTC painkiller available- and all at the same time. The pain-relieving gargle he gave me doesn't do anything. It can't even numb my tongue but for a few minutes. I'm in so much pain that I can't even swallow. Ice cream and Dr. Pepper are unswallowable too. When I swallow my own spit, it causes pain spasms to go through my body. At the office today I tried to tell them that I was in extreme pain. A lack of voice probably meant I failed to communicate just how bad it is. I'm sure they meant will when prescribing me a worthless gargle. Personally, I have never been in this much pain before.

I wonder if they're gonnna charge me for a phone call too?


Well, the good doctor called back and agreed to call in a painkiller for one or two night's worth of pills. Hubby is the one who talked to him on the phone since I had no voice. He did tell hubby that painkiller abuse was a problem nowadays and that was his reason for prescribing only 6 pills. I took 3 of them last night and have 3 left for tomorrow. Hopefully after tonight, the antibiotics will have started working their magic and I'll feel better overall.

The hydrocordone worked okay for about 4 hours. I would sleep and be still. But then I would cough or swallow and suddenly be wide awake and in pain again. It was like there were a couple hot spots that the medicine just couldn't reach to kill the pain. For the most part, I did feel better.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Explosion in Lab at Texas A&M

An explosion at Texas A&M in the Chemistry Building! I imagined the whole third floor of the building disappearing in a ball of flames but the old building is still standing, a bit shakier now though. Somebody's chemistry experiment exploded overnight but I get the impression from the short article that nobody even realized it until much later.

From KBTX:

Emergency crews on the scene of an explosion on the campus of Texas A&M University.

Authorities aren't sure what happened but say the explosion actually happened sometime overnight on the third floor of the Chemistry Building.

No one was present when the explosion happened and there are no reports of any injuries. Lab personnel say hydrocarbons were being distilled on a lab on the third floor. Authorities say there is "significant damage" to one of the labs inside the building.

The only danger, authorities say, is flammability - that the fumes of the chemicals could ignite a fire. They have sealed off a large area around the building. Crews from College Station and Bryan fire departments are on the scene as well as hazardous materials personnel from both fire departments and the university.

Crews say it could be a matter of hours, or days, before they have
things cleaned up.

The road beside the Chemistry Building and in between the old Geology Building has been closed for ages because it was destroyed by Mother Nature's slow destructive forces. It's quite a black mark on an otherwise beautiful and well-kept campus. I had heard a rumor years ago when the closed the road, that the school was going to wait until the Chemistry Building was re-built in a few short years. However, that was so very wrong. Instead, the University built a second, bigger Chemistry in the middle of my favorite parking lot.

Today is My Birthday!

Happy Birthday to Me!

I was:

24 years old at the time of the 9-11 attack on America
22 years old on the first day of Y2K
20 years old when Princess Diana was killed in a car crash
18 years old at the time of the Oklahoma City bombing
17 years old when O.J. Simpson was charged with murder
16 years old at the time of the 93 bombing of the World Trade Center
14 years old when Operation Desert Storm began
12 years old during the fall of the Berlin Wall
9 years old when the space shuttle Challenger exploded
7 years old when Apple introduced the Macintosh
6 years old during Sally Ride's travel in space
4 years old when Pres. Regan was shot by John Hinckley, Jr.
2 years old at the the time the Iran hostage crisis began

Monday, January 09, 2006

The Feel-Good Story of the Day

There's always heartwarming news around but it's extremely hard to find. Treat yourself today to this letter send to the Houston Chronicle from a reader:
HURRICANE Katrina resulted in many tragedies, including thousands of homeless dogs. Sometimes though, good things can result from even the worst misfortunes. One of these dogs, Zoey, a Rottweiler, was taken from a shelter to the Friends of the American Rottweiler Club in September. She was about 18 months old and had recently lost a litter of puppies through a miscarriage. Both of her eyes were severely infected, and she had wounds on her face and head. Zoey was first transported to a foster home, to be under the care of Helen Garcia, nursed back to health and then spayed. Just before Thanksgiving, she was adopted by Traci Colvin and her two children in Seguin.

On the evening of Dec. 10, Colvin's son Kendell was ill with a respiratory infection. She had spent several hours trying to get him comfortable; and, finally, at 3 a.m. he fell into a restful sleep. She was grateful to be able to crawl into bed herself.

Around 5 that morning, Zoey began barking at Colvin's bedside and would not stop, even when commanded. The mother wearily got up and, assuming Zoey needed to go outside, put the dog out. However, the dog just stood by the door and continued to bark. Colvin scolded Zoey, but finally let her back into the house. Zoey ran down the hall and continued to bark.

When Colvin went into the hallway, she found that the breaker box was smoking and a cord was smoldering. She quickly called for help and when the fire department arrived, a firefighter told her that her mobile home could have gone up in flames in a matter of minutes. Sometimes a good turn deserves a payback.

LEW OLSON Magnolia

Thursday, January 05, 2006

And they thought 'Jungle Fever' was bad...

Woman weds dolphin
Tel Aviv, Israel
December 30, 2005 - 6:34AM

British tourist Sharon Tendler has finally made her dream match - by "marrying" a dolphin she has been visiting for 15 years in the Israeli resort of Eilat, the mass-circulation Yediot Ahronot daily reported today.

Ms Tendler, 41, has been visiting the city on the Gulf of Aqaba two or three times a year to spend time with her 35-year-old underwater sweetheart.

"The peace and tranquility under water, and his love, would calm me down," the Israeli daily quoted her as saying.

Last week, Ms Tendler finally plucked up the courage to ask the dolphin's trainer for the mammal's fin in marriage.

The wedding took place on Wednesday, with the bride - wearing a white dress and watched by amazed spectators - walking down the dock to where the groom was waiting in the water.

She kissed him, to the cheers of the spectators and then, after the ceremony was sealed with some mackerels, was tossed into the water so she could swim away with her new husband.

"I'm the happiest girl on earth," the bride was quoted as saying.

"I made a dream come true. And I am not a pervert."


Don't you just love that last line? How does one respond to this?

I looked up the Gulf of Aqaba since I didn't remember it right off and had to wonder how this sort of thing could occur uncontested in that region of the world.

I am sure we are all wondering the same thing. Does she get tax benefits now?

Charity "Poker Runs" not Charity?

Charity 'poker runs' will have to fold Attorney general rules motorcycle clubs'events are illegal gambling

By R.G. RATCLIFFE Copyright 2005 Houston Chronicle Austin Bureau

AUSTIN - Motorcycle clubs that stage "poker runs" for charity will find 2006 less bountiful because Attorney General Greg Abbott ruled Tuesday that such fundraisers amount to illegal gambling under Texas law.

Poker runs typically have a participant paying a registration fee or have the motorcycle rider purchase cards or hands at various rally points. At the end of the run, a cash prize is usually awarded for the best hand, the second-best hand and the worst hand.

Abbott ruled that a poker run with cash prizes would amount to a lottery under state law. He said an organization that kept part of the proceeds for charity would violate the state's prohibition on gambling.

"Even if the contribution goes to a charitable cause and the nonprofit organization will pay prizes from other money, a participant pays money for the chance to win a prize," Abbott said. "Thus we conclude ... the nonprofit organization would become a custodian of a bet in violation (of the state Penal Code)."

Ok, here is one of my problems with this ruling. If gambling and lottery are so inherently wrong that they should not be used to help raise financial assistance for those in need, then how is it the state can justify helping itself to even more money, with it's lottery, for no specific reason? The state should not be above the law.

The law basically seeks to prohibit any situation that involves three elements: paying to get in on the fun, a chance to win, and a prize given to those lucky enough to "win."

From Texas Penal Code, Chapter 47, Gambling

(7) "Lottery" means any scheme or procedure whereby one or more prizes are distributed by chance among persons who have paid or promised consideration for a chance to win anything of value, whether such scheme or procedure is called a pool, lottery, raffle, gift, gift enterprise, sale, policy game, or some other name.

Raffles are included in the prohibition. How many schools, churches, and other such groups hold raffles?

Cake Walks could be interpreted as games of chance and be declared illegal.

An acquaintance won a donated motorcycle in a raffle held to raise money for Ride for Kids in support of the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation.

The bed I sleep on every night was won in a raffle my National Guard unit held a few years ago as a fundraiser for the Family Support Group*. A mattress company was among many local business who donated item for this particular raffle. Are we all to be branded conspiring villains and thrown to the lions?
*The FSG program is organized to aid the spouses of soldiers while they are deployed.

The ruling will broadly affect motorcycle organizations across Texas. At least seven have posted poker runs on the Internet through March. Charitable poker runs in the past year have been hosted by motorcycle clubs as well as police and fire epartments around the state.

The poker run that prompted Abbott's opinion was organized by the Blue Knights Texas XXXI chapter to raise money for Galveston County Deputy Sheriff Michel Roy, who was injured in April when his squad car collided with a drunken driver's vehicle.

The Blue Knights is a motorcycle club consisting of active and retired police officers.

The club's advertised run said riders could buy hands for $10 each with no limit on the number of hands that could be purchased. At the end of the run, prizes would consist of $700 for the best hand, $200 for the second-best hand and $100 for the worst hand.

Event drew complaint

Galveston County Criminal District Attorney Kurt Sistrunk said he received a citizen complaint on the poker run the day before it occurred. He said he called Blue Knights officers and asked them to call the event off.

Ok, here is where it gets a bit interesting. The event drew complaint from a concerned citizen. Remember, this is an organization of active and retired POLICE OFFICERS. Probably the least offensive group to hold an event, right? Who would want to destroy an opportunity for police officers to aid one of their fallen or wounded brothers? I'd be willing to bet it wasn't a citizen complaining that someone would go home with a few more dollars in their pockets.

I'll tell you that from personal experience there is no ulterior motive for a poker run. They are fundraisers that are fun. People come out, pay for their hand(s), and, win or lose, go home happy to have been a part of something bigger than themselves.

I have no first hand account of the events, so here again is more from me ;-)

Here's reason #1 why the complaint came in. We all know the stereotype. Big, black leather clad, tattooed brutes, thundering in and around on bikes with open exhaust systems, with scantily clad females onboard and shouting, "Show us your t*ts!"

And reason #2: Many poker run stations are at bars or other alcohol serving locations. Often in the advertising of "biker" events is the inclusion of a list of which beers will be represented at said event. (You know where I am going with this now don't you?) Mixing alcohol with riding (or driving) is a bad. Period. Police are no exception to temptation when it comes. Police are real people too. Unfortunately it isn't uncommon to have alcohol related incidences at events of this kind.

"There was no getting around it, in my estimation, they would be violating the law if they pursued that event," Sistrunk said.
Poor planning of poker runs, and by that I mean inclusion of alcohol, and fear of a stereotype has drawn the attention of the rather hypocritical "Selective Enforcement Squad." This is what they wanted to prohibit. Let's call a spade a spade and quit dancing around why this came up at all.

Blue Knights chapter President D.J. Alvarez said after that call, the club continued with the poker run, but canceled the cash prizes.

Alvarez said only three or four riders backed out of the Blue Knights run that weekend, but he said Abbott's ruling will have a serious impact on charitable poker runs across Texas.

Ok, how many of us want to look like cheap heels in front of our friends? Only four quit because the rest didn't want to lose face. But you better believe that in the future folks won't be quite as hasty to get signed up for this.

"You have poker runs every weekend," said Alvarez, a lieutenant in the Galveston Police Department. "They're all for cancer organizations, charitable organizations."

He said they are especially useful in raising money for injured police or firefighters.

"Where in a matter of three hours can you raise $5,000?" Alvarez said.

'We can get around it'

While Abbott's ruling specifically addressed the Blue Knights' poker run, Sistrunk said he reads it to outlaw all such fund-raising activities by nonprofit groups.

The state doesn't want competition, eh? If you are going to lose your money in the pursuit of a prize, you have to do it at the state's game. Isn't that called a monopoly? Oh wait, they are the government and are smarter than us. They know what is best for us. Right.

"They're going to have to come up with a different way of collecting money," Sistrunk said.

One of the biggest poker runs in the Houston area is sponsored by Competition Motorcycles of Pearland.

Owner Jesse McCulley said his run is meant to promote motorcycling, with all the money being paid out in prizes. He said he understands that makes it legal because no one benefits but the riders who participate.

Here's some backwards thinking. McCulley thinks it's ok if all the money is used in supplying prizes. Unless everyone gets a prize, it is illegal. If there is a chance I may or may not win a prize, it is illegal according to the state penal code.

McCulley said Abbott's ruling will negatively affect charity events if there are no cash prizes for poker runs.

"Some people are going to come out of the kindness of their heart," he said. "But let's face it, if you cut out that little piece of cheese at the end of the trail, participation is going to decline."

Sputnik, chairman of the Texas Motorcycle Rights Association, who does not use a last name, said he does not believe Abbott's ruling marks the end of poker runs.

"We can get around it," Sputnik said. "We can give trophies, and we can give cash money on the side."

I have had the pleasure of speaking with Sputnik on a couple of occasions. If you were to see him, he fits the stereotype of a biker. To speak with him would surprise many. He is a sharp fellow and is very open minded, but not to the point of his brain falling out. I wouldn't doubt his character, but I don't understand how paying money on the side would be different than paying money to the winner. Wouldn't they be paying the same person for achieving the same goal?

Either way, I am sorry to see poker runs get squashed instead of re-organized. The Blue Knights are a great group and an example of riders trying to help out. I wish them the best of luck in finding differnt ways to bring aid to those in need.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006


Wow, I just found out that a friend of mine, Julie, is running for judge! She's an awesome lawyer, organized, hard working, and quite fair in her opinions. She's one of those people who has a magic touch with all people, able to easily make friends and understand other's problems.

From The Eagle:

The final day to get on the 2006 ballot was marked Monday by a flurry of last-minute filings in Brazos County as nine Republicans and one Democrat announced their candidacy for various posts held by incumbents.

Among the dozens of seats up for grabs is the 85th District Court judgeship, which garnered the most attention Monday as incumbent Judge J.D. Langley - a Republican seeking a fifth term on the bench - found himself with opposition from two local lawyers.

Republican lawyers David Barron and Julie May Young both filed Monday for the job. The three will compete for the post in the March 7 primary.

I wish Julie the best of luck! I wonder how I'll be able to help her.


And here's some more news concerning the upcoming elections in Texas, but not in my area. This is one heck of a way to start your divorce off. I would definitely say that this battle could turn a wee bit ugly.

From the Houston Chronicle:

PHARR — The wife of a state representative filed Monday to run against her husband in a South Texas race that both candidates said coincides with an impending divorce.

Democratic state Rep. Armando "Mando" Martinez, an incumbent from Weslaco, faces a primary challenge from his wife, Jessica Reyes-Martinez. The District 39 seat covers part of Hidalgo County.

Reyes-Martinez, 28, filed as a candidate in the March 7 primary only 30 minutes before the Monday deadline, The Monitor reported in its Tuesday edition. She's making her first bid for public office and is now a homemaker.

First Kiss

It was the summer between 1st and 2nd grade. Another hot Houston summer bearing down on the vehicles and our playground. Only the brave ventured onto the swings afternoon. The seats were burning hot and roasted your legs quickly into a bright red mass. The most prized toy in the afternoon was a swing seat that somebody else had just gotten off of.

His name was Peter and his birthday was exactly the day before mine. We were also the smallest kids of the "big kids" group. This gave us a distinct advantage during the hoop hop game. The daycare workers would slowly raise the hula hoop higher and higher; the winner was the one that could jump through the hoop at it's highest level. I always took second. Peter always took first place.

The playground was extremely large and even had a shady duck pond to play by. That day my best friend and I decided to get away from everybody else and wandered over pond. We sat cross-legged in the dust facing each other just talking about whatever is exciting in a second grader's life. It was then when I received my first kiss. We just leaned forward and -peck- it was over. But the shrill voice of one the daycare workers calling our names ruined whatever conversation might have continued.

It was quite a walk to the bench where the ladies in charge were hiding from the sun. I really hated to be in trouble and didn't quite know if I had really done something bad. I hated to stand out. It was extremely uncomfortable facing them.

"Do you want each other's phone number?", said the lady. I recall my brain going quite blank at this question. Wasn't I in trouble? The ladies sure thought it a good idea so said sure and we switched phone numbers.

As a kid, I had no use for the phone but I did call him just once. The conversation was about 10 minutes long- and extremely boring. My summer romance had faded. Now it lives on only in this post and a funny story that some now gray-haired ladies probably tell over coffee.

Monday, January 02, 2006

Bonfire burns again

Bonfire was still standing tall after the November burn because it had failed to burn all the way through. Yesterday, Bonfire was finally finished off and taken down, but not in the grand finale that anybody had hoped for.

Firefighters from across Brazos County spent much of New Year's Day trying
to extinguish the still-standing Aggie Student Bonfire, which slowly had to be
dismantled after unknown culprits set it on fire.

A track hoe operator brought in by a volunteer fire department plucked
the smoldering logs down one by one. Meanwhile, Brazos County Sheriff's
Department officials said late Sunday that they will try to find whoever was
responsible for igniting the stack of logs.

While it was unclear who set the blaze, it was obvious the structure
purposely had been lit, according to Jason Ware, an assistant fire chief over
precincts 2 and 3 volunteer fire departments.

The main reason that Bonfire had not been finished off was because there is a burn ban in effect for most of Texas. A terrible drought that has been in effect since summer, combined with a day of high winds, forced the firefighters to use extreme methods to put the bonfire logs out.

Sunday, January 01, 2006

LIfe Without a Computer

Sorry for my absence. I went on vacation but did not expect to be without a computer! My relavtives joke about being in the stone age still because they have limited internet access. Even though they live in a major metropolitian city, they're area isn't offered dsl service. Boo hoo! I've so missed posting!

But now, vacation is almost over and I'll be writing again. Fun! See ya' soon!