Archive for August, 2006

Garland: A really $#!**^ town

August 24, 2006

Dallas Morning News | News for Dallas, Texas | Local News Columnist Steve Blow This is the kind of story that makes me mad as hell. An 80 year old widow living in Garland awoke early one morning to find raw sewage backing up through her plumbing into her home over a foot deep. Her possessions are ruined, and I personally would never want to set foot in the home again. Ordinarily, you’d expect that her insurance would cover this, but you’d be wrong. State Farm, like many other insurers, specifically excludes coverage for this and the city claims governmental immunity despite the fact that the backup was in the municipal sewer main and not on the homeowner’s property.

This columnist has written on the subject twice before, and now notes that the city of Garland is attempting to get federal grant money that is supposed to be earmarked for fixing up elderly homeowners properties that need repair and offering to contribute some money from contingency funds if sufficient volunteer efforts cannot be found to rectify the damage. Color me unimpressed.

I’ll admit that I’ve disliked Garland for years in the way that only former residents can do, but this is despicable behavior and I shall certainly vote with my feet. I will look to other cities for my dining and shopping needs for a considerable time even though they have an excellent new mall that is the closest to my home. I’m also going to investigate suitable coverage for my own home despite the fact that our municipal sewer system is decades newer than Garland’s.

UPDATE: FEMA has a page with information on backflow preventers that can be installed by any competent plumbers. I’m getting one put in next spring.

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Dallas Cowboys Update

August 24, 2006

AAAARRRRGGGGGHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! There are still weeks to go before the season even starts and I’m already sick of hearing about ‘The Cowboys’ (insert Galaxina sound effect here). There was a wonderful time this spring where I went for literally several weeks without hearing about the Cowboys, or Bill Parcells, or Jerry Jones, or even the Dallas Police Department. It couldn’t last of course, but like rain it was nice while it was here. Since about three days after the Mavericks lost the finals of the NBA, it’s been business as usual.

Bill Parcells trimmed his toenails today and one of the clippings was the silhouette of Keyshawn Johnson. The first cousin twice removed of the equipment managers’ adopted daughter said that Jerry Jones told him personally that the team would definitely ….

On the bright side, our massage therapy folks said that their business was dead during the last pre-pre-pre season game; so we’ll take advantage of that for our scheduling needs.

Texas Rangers Baseball Update

August 24, 2006

After losing three games in a row to the second worst team in the American League, I hereby declare the Texas Rangers to be dead meat in the division race. It is now Oakland’s to lose and I expect the Rangers to finish no better than third in a four team division.

For a season that began with several false starts it’s actually been a fun ride. Michael Young continues to develop as a leader and watching Gary Mathews develop as a player has been very enjoyable. I hate having to write the obituary for this season so soon, but the truth must be observed and that is that this team is less than the sum of its parts.

Last year I said that the Rangers needed to make three personnel moves to improve their chances in the division. Unfortunately those personnel include the owner, the general manager, and the field manager. The general manager has since resigned his day to day activities to concentrate on his golf game and continue cashing the team’s paychecks. The owner, who is still writing checks to a player that he overpaid to come here and ‘traded’ to the Yankees two years ago, is unlikely to leave. The field manager is still a source of hope for me. He’s not really a bad guy, but he hasn’t had a history of leading teams to success personally and I think that he is so fond of his own decision making abilities that the team suffers.