Bag of Randomness for Friday, October 20, 2017

  • So, where have you been all week? I had to take an unexpected business trip to Washington D.C. and forgot to pack my laptop and phone charger.
    • I loathe flying and it’s bad on the back, even worse when you take the redeye.
    • I flew Virgin America out of Love Field, even though I live a stone throw away from DFW. It felt a bit cheesy. They played dance music as we boarded and the plane has purple accent lights and purple tinted barrier windows between first and peasant class. The seats felt more comfortable than other airlines, the flight crew were okay, and the in-flight entertainment was pretty good. The airline got bought out by Alaska Airlines last year.
    • The security line at Love Field was crazy long compared to any security line I’ve been in at DFW, Austin, La Guardia, Newark, Baltimore, Dulles, Reagan, Orlando, LAX, Vegas, or San Diego.
    • It only costs six bucks a day to park at Love Field if you use their offsite shuttle option.
    • I’ll never understand why humans who will be boarding last stand up and crowd the boarding area.
    • Every time I fly it seems like they ask for volunteers to check in their luggage. This time, they stated they need at least fifteen passengers to check in their luggage. The only benefit they provided was to chance to board after priority boarding, which I found out meant after the first class, gold status, silver status, and some other status boarded first.
    • I sat next to lovely young Irish women on the way to D.C. and she was straight out of central casting with her red hair, light complexion, and dainty accent. I could listen to her speak for hours.
    • At the end of one day, I got politely stuck speaking to a former manager who is now an executive and then got looped into a long conversation with our CEO. I didn’t leave the office until nine that night, I think.  I really like the people I work under, but I always think anyone above me gives me false sincerity. You know, that business politeness where people are always in “sales” mode. Actually, I tend to think anyone I encounter gives me false sincerity, even WifeGeeding, and the kids.
    • I love driving around the D.C. area, maybe it’s the tall trees. Yeah, I’ve driven around East Texas plenty of times with their tall trees, but the trees are prettier in Virginia. But it seems like a lot of their highways have stoplights. I’m too use the concrete jungle of four to six driving lanes in one direction and overpasses of DFW.
    • I grew up without the use of GPS and relied on maps and handwritten directions. There’s no way I’d want to travel the D.C. area without GPS.
    • My rental car, a small Ford of some sort, didn’t have an inside switch to open the gas tank and had no cap for the gas tank. The flap to access the gas was of thick rubber to provide a seal.
    • It felt a bit liberating not being attached to the internet or listening to The Ticket.
  • Gordon Keith of The TICKET brought up the idea of no punting in the NFL. I like the idea, but I like the idea of giving each time just two punts per half even better. Imagine a team using both their punts early in a game and then later having to start on the one-yard-line and everyone second guessing the head coach for not saving his punts.
  • GIF – A primitive but very effective way to sort lemons by size
  • The Dallas Morning News – Why bigger is better when it comes to megachurches in southern Dallas
  • Georgia News – Woman says she could face jail time because she can’t afford husband’s cremation
  • I liked how my elementary school teachers would use a pencil to check my hair for lice.
  • GIF – I had no idea a hydraulic failure on a dump truck could be so powerful.
  • The Simpsons’s Classic Baseball Episode Gets the Mockumentary Treatment
  • Willow Creek Chooses Co-Ed Pastors to Succeed Bill HybelsMegachurch becomes biggest in America to appoint a female lead pastor.
  • A first look at 8 possible versions of President Donald Trump’s border wall
    • All of the finished prototypes, as well as the one that’s nearly completed, employ concrete as the main construction material. But the designs of some vary greatly. For example, one built by a Maryland company uses concrete at the base with the top two-thirds featuring blue metal panels. Another, built by an Alabama company, has a wide concrete base that gives way to a thinner frame halfway up the structure. Notably, only one of the completed designs incorporates see-through features that would allow Border Patrol agents to monitor activity on the other side of the border.
  • ‘Halt and Catch Fire’
    • If there’s one thing I didn’t like about this season it was Bos’ beard.
    • If there was a second thing I didn’t like about this season, I didn’t think the actress who played Donna could pull off the character’s job transition to an executive role.
    • Loved that “Phoenix” scene.
    • Series finales rarely satisfy and are lacking.  I liked this one but didn’t find it fulfilling. However, I liked how it all wrapped up, especially Joe. I’d like to watch the pilot again and compare it to the finale. I bet the finale had a lot of hat-tips to the pilot, specifically the last words spoken by Joe. And it would be nice to be reminded how much Joe’s character has changed. Oh, and he has a great voice.
    • “They’re the thing that gets you to the thing. You were the thing.”
  • A Catfishing With a Happy Ending – Emma was deceived by an older man on the internet—and then found love with the model whose photographs he had stolen
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Lack of Southern Hospitality

Language and violence warning.

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Bag of Randomness for Friday, October 13, 2017

  • Must be related to Ray Guy – Woman almost dies after unborn baby kicks a hole in her womb
  • Another Benjamin L. Corey blog post, and here’s my usual disclaimer, I neither endorse or oppose him, but appreciate how he will add to theological thought and discussion.
  • When a University of Miami football player intercepts a pass, he gets to wear the “Turnover Chain”. Story | GIF
  • Poppable Pimple Cakes Are Here — And They Are Both Utterly Repulsive and Strangely Satisfying
  • Trump Starts To Leave Signing Ceremony Without Signing Order, Pence Has To Bring Him Back
  • Where ‘Hitler’ Doesn’t Mean AnythingIn Pakistan, the Fuhrer’s name sells clothes.
    • In Pakistan, “Hitler” is everywhere. Often searching for Wi-Fi signals, I’ll sometimes come across one with some permutation of Hitler’s name: “h1tl3r72,” “hitlerhouse,” or the confounding “ManUnitedHitler” combo I saw flicker on and off while sitting in a coffee shop. Stuck in Karachi’s never-ending traffic, I’ll catch a glimpse of “HITLER” emblazoned on the back of a Suzuki passenger van. Occasionally, I’ll see “hitler” spray-painted on a slum wall or stitched onto the polo shirt of a chai-wallah. The most baffling and established example of Hitler’s omnipresence here is a label called “Hitler: Reloaded,” headquartered on the corner of one of Karachi’s biggest markets. It sells moderately priced menswear.
    • It turns out, however, that the average Pakistani doesn’t know who Hitler is. On one of the occasions I saw a Wi-Fi network featuring the Fuhrer’s moniker — “hitler2,” in this particular case — I was in a small enough neighborhood in which I could deduce which house named their network after ol’ Adolf. When I finally met the man living in the house, I asked him why he named his Wi-Fi network after Hitler. “He was a really strict general in Germany. I like to keep a strict household,” he said.
  • It’s that time of the year in Texas and a lot of schools are having their homecoming. Not until a few years ago, I thought all high schools had a bonfire for their homecoming. I had no idea what my hometown of Mineral Wells did was a bit unique, although a handful of small Texas towns also do it. The bonfire would be built during the week and seniors would stay the night on Wednesday. Supposedly, many moons ago, a rival town set fire to it early, so the seniors were there to keep watch. I’m not sure if that was true, but it was a good excuse to stay the night out there unsupervised. It would then be lit on Thursday night with the majority of the town gathered around it. I have many fond memories of them and it always felt magical. It happened on the outskirts of town, next to our stadium in an open field surrounded by woods with the band playing. For a small town, it was pretty decent in size, maybe two or three stories tall. All this talk of homecoming in the news led me to a little research, which actually bummed me out. Mineral Wells no longer plays football at the stadium on the outskirts of town, so I guess there was no longer a need to have the bonfire in that location. Per this horrible video, it’s filmed sideways and there’s cursing, the bonfire is now in the parking lot of the high school and it’s in a dumpster. What was a beautiful experience is now nothing more than a dumpster fire. What’s embarrassing is that the volunteer fire department sets it on fire, but they do it horribly wrong.

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Armless Driving

 

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Fence goes up around the Breaking Bad house

The RV tour bus is a neat idea.

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Bag of Randomness for Thursday, October 12, 2018

  • I was stuck in a moment of nostalgia when I stumbled upon some Chirggerex the other day. I had no idea that stuff was still around, it was a staple at my house when I was a child.
  • I was checking DaughterGeeding’s homework last night and tried to keep from laughing. She had to use the word “prison” in a sentence. Her sentence, “I’m not in prison, yet.”
  • I guess we wear deodorant (or antiperspirant) for those around us more than we do ourselves.
  • You often hear how a certain type of fashion will go out of style and come back again, bell bottoms for example. I’m surprised the bullet bra, those pointy brassieres popular in the 50’s, never came back into style.
  • Eerie headline –  Teen burned alive named killer before dying, firefighters testify
  • ‘Modern Family’ is in its ninth season, and the actress who plays “Lily” is still the worst actor in television.
  • After watching ‘Modern Family’ I caught just a little bit of ‘American Housewife’. The teenage boy had an embarrassing moment during a ballet class when he uncontrollably became aroused and couldn’t hide it in front of his peers. Those teenage years are an awkward phase. You girls may not understand but all guys know what I’m talking about. There’s a reason a lot of boys carried their books in front of them with two hands. I remember a similar event happening to a friend during our junior year in high school. The school had a special assembly to watch a student production of “Alladin”. The poor guy had one of those moments during the play and I can still remember certain people yelling and making fun of him.
  • Kate Bennett is a reporter for CNN and loves fashion. She frequently tweets about the wardrobe of the First Lady (current and former), often listing the price and where you can buy it (Example1, Example2). It’s superficial, yet I enjoy those tweets for some reason. I’m guessing it has to deal with my fascination of presidential history and such.
  • This was a better than expected read. NBC News’ Katy Tur covered Donald Trump on the campaign trail and he called her out many times in speeches and on Twitter. She wrote about the experience and is pushing a book, here’s an excerpt(strong language warning).
    • This is about when they first met:
      • “Don’t you want a picture?” he asks me, as if he doesn’t know why I haven’t suggested it yet. “Come here, Katy.” OK, this is awkward. I don’t want a photo. I know that our every move is beaming live into 30 Rockefeller Center, NBC News headquarters, and that my bosses, watching in real time, will cringe to see me smiling like a fan girl next to my interview subject. I’m not sure it’s a good idea to tell him no but at the same time … why in the world would he think I want a photo? I’m not a fan. I’m a journalist. This is a network news interview. So I say yes. Maybe this is a mind game. Maybe Trump is trying to charm me, knock me off balance, confuse the point of this interview. Or maybe he just figures he’s a bigshot celebrity and pre-interview photos are routine.
  • Restored Prisoner’s Letter Uncovers Horrific Details of Life at Auschwitz Death Camp
  • An Extremely Tense Battle Between A Moose And A WolfA drone pilot got one hell of a show while filming in Ontario recently.
  • I never really thought it about before, and maybe it’s because I lack it, but this coach is totally right – you earn confidence, nobody gives it to you.

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Bag of Randomness for Wednesday, October 11, 2017

  • The older I get, the more I have to come to grips that I will never be as country a Marie or as rock and roll as Donnie. Did you know that Donnie has his own furniture line?
  • I like to play the celebrity age game with WifeGeeding because she’s so darn good at it. I’d say, at least 97% of the time, her guess is within a year of the actual age.
  • I’ve been hearing a lot of people sing Toto’s “Africa” quite a bit as of late.
  • Speaking of old songs, A-ha recently did MTV’s Unplugged (yup, it’s revived) and their acoustic version of “Take On Me” is great. That video has to be in the top-five of iconic 80’s videos, eh?
  • I can’t identify a single St. Vincent song and I doubt I can pick her out of a lineup, but I think she has a really cool stage name. Neil Diamond, believe it or not, isn’t a stage name but his real name.
  • Just in case any of you need to wake up, TD Jakes has a message for you.
  • The U.S. Army awarded 20 Medals of Honor to soldiers of The Battle of Wounded Knee.
  • Good behavior
    • More than 6,600 inmates have donated $53,863 from their commissary funds to help victims of Hurricane Harvey.
  • I often hear football fans wish the NFL would adopt such-and-such rule from the college game and vice-versa. No complaints here, I like seeing different variations of the game.
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Bag of Randomness for Tuesday, October 10, 2017

  • Longtime readers may recall my blogging about my friend Allyson’s fight with cancer, which she lost back in 2014. She left behind a husband and three boys, ages eight to twelve. I often wondered what they are up to. Yesterday, I found out the answer from an old friend and instantly regretted I even asked. After her death, in the span of fifteen months, her husband remarried, was arrested, and killed himself. All I could do was think about those young boys, what they’ve been through in that crazy two-year span, and how it took me two years to even hear about it.
  • In William Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying, chapter 19 of the book is just one sentence: “My mother is a fish.”
  • NASA astronaut Scott Kelly spent almost a year and space and he wrote a book about it, which will come out later this month. Here’s some detail he provides about a dinner he had with family just two days after returning to Earth:
    • I contemplated what it would be like to eat this meal so many times. Now that I’m finally here, it doesn’t seem entirely real. The faces of the people I love that I haven’t seen for so long, the chatter of many people talking together, the clink of silverware, the swish of wine in a glass – these are all unfamiliar. Even the sensation of gravity holding me in my chair feels strange, and every time I put a glass or fork down on the table there’s a part of my mind that is looking for a dot of Velcro or a strip of duct tape to hold it in place.
    •  I start the journey to my bedroom: about 20 steps from the chair to the bed. On the third step, the floor seems to lurch under me, and I stumble into a planter. Of course, it isn’t the floor – it’s my vestibular system trying to readjust to Earth’s gravity. I’m getting used to walking again.
    • I make it to my bedroom without incident and close the door behind me. Every part of my body hurts. All my joints and all of my muscles are protesting the crushing pressure of gravity. I’m also nauseated, though I haven’t thrown up. I strip off my clothes and get into bed, relishing the feeling of sheets, the light pressure of the blanket over me, the fluff of the pillow under my head. All these are things I’ve missed dearly for the past year.
    • And then this part, not related to the dinner, stood out:
      • A normal mission to the International Space Station lasts five to six months, so scientists have a good deal of data about what happens to the human body in space for that length of time. But very little is known about what occurs after month six. The symptoms may get precipitously worse in the ninth month, for instance, or they may level off. We don’t know, and there is only one way to find out.
      • On my previous flight to the space station, a mission of 159 days, I lost bone mass, my muscles atrophied, and my blood redistributed itself in my body, which strained and shrank the walls of my heart. More troubling, I experienced problems with my vision, as many other astronauts had. I had been exposed to more than 30 times the radiation of a person on Earth, equivalent to about 10 chest X-rays every day. This exposure would increase my risk of a fatal cancer for the rest of my life.
  • James Avery creates Whataburger charm for sale
  • A great two-point conversion from last night.

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Bag of Randomness for Columbus Day 2017

  • Pee-wee flag football was great on Saturday. I felt like Jim Lee Howell out there with Landry (WifeGeeding) and Lombardi (Jimi) helping. We got creamed last week but were totally dominant this last game. It’s neat seeing how some of the kids have developed and are learning and retaining things. And it’s cool seeing how some of them are coming out of their shell. But it’s still a challenge with a few of them, and it’s important those kids don’t slip through the cracks.
  • I have the day off and I’m spending the morning at a pumpkin patch.
  • SNL really hit it out of the park with their cold open. It’s interesting how it’s become part of the American disposition. And that “dating app” skit was simply great.
  • What’s up with all the annexation in Texas as of late? This year I’ve heard Weatherford, Decatur, and Lewisville attempting annexation of nearby communities. Is something going on legally with a time constraint that it’s happening so much recently, or has it happened often I just haven’t been paying attention?
  • I’ve noted how I wasn’t much of a Tom Petty fan, but since his death, I’ve started to have a higher appreciation of the man. My first memories of him and his videos disturbed me as a kid. There was “Mary Jane’s Last Dance” in which he dressed and danced with a corpse and the “Don’t Come Around Here No More” with the Alice in Wonderland theme in which he played the Mad Hatter who ate Alice when she was turned into a cake. I also had no idea Petty worked as a groundskeeper at the University of Florida, and the crowd at the game on Saturday sang “I Won’t Back Down” in unison in tribute to him. Very cool.
  • Kansas State head coach Bill Snyder battled throat cancer last year and coached on his birthday with his team playing against the Texas Longhorn, who gave him a big signed birthday card before the game.  Texas QB Sam Ehlinger, who now probably deserves the starting job, had one heck of a bulldozing run.
  • There was a lot of debate about Vice President Pence leaving the Colts game yesterday, in which Peyton Manning’s number was retired. But what got my attention in Indianapolis was David Letterman making a surprise appearance to roast Peyton Manning when his statue outside the stadium was revealed. Dave said that both Peyton and Eli have the same number of wins so far this year. Letterman will also be on Kimmel this week. Little known fact, Letterman sent Kimmel a box of his old ties after he went off the air, which I’m sure will be a topic of conversation.
  • It feels good letting go of sports team enthusiasm. I haven’t completely done so, but the Cowboys loss didn’t affect me one bit yesterday. In the past, it would have bummed me out for a day or two. Sure, it’s fun, but I started to realize I took it too seriously and in the grand scheme of things, it doesn’t matter how a sports team does.
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Missed it by that much…

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Bag of Randomness for Friday, October 6, 2017

  • While watching the evening news on CBS11 I couldn’t help but notice the latest First Baptist Dallas commercial. Dr. Jeffress stated Ainsley Earhardt of ‘Fox and Friends’ will be interviewed, his sermon will cover if Christianity is the only right religion, and visitors get a free lunch. But wait, there’s more. If you are a first time visitor, you get a copy of his new book. Get the details here.
  • First Baptist Dallas tweeted this earlier in the week.

    • I took a gander at that article or whatever you call it, and I think I found a mistake. Don’t they mean “Commander In Chief”? For a place that is so involved with politics and pro-military, I’m surprised to see this oversight, twice.
  • In other CBS11 news, they also had a crew out in the small West Texas town of Moran, a population of about 270. That caught my attention because one of my closest friends was the youth minister at First Baptist Moran for about three years when we were in college. You may hear about the town often now. The largest manufacturer and inventor of bump stocks is based there. Per The Dallas Morning News, two companies manufacture the device in Moran. I’m not trying to get political, but with a movement further regulate or ban the manufacture of the bump stock, which I understand the NRA is even going to endorse, that would affect local employment numbers bigtime for a town of fewer than 300 people. I’m sure they will be contacting their congressmen.
    • The first time I attended a worship at First Baptist Moran the preacher shared a story of how he met his wife. He was a student at Hardin-Simmons and there was a BSU (Baptist Student Union) lunch or dinner. All the seats were taken when a group of female students arrived. One of the girls mentioned how there were no more seats. He pointed at his knee and said, “There’s one here if you’d like to take it.” She did, and they quickly got engaged and were married three months later.
  • The Cowboys play the Packers this weekend. I remember the first time I saw Aaron Rodgers play. The Packers were playing the Cowboys at Texas Stadium. Favre started the game and he was known for never winning a game at Texas Stadium. The Cowboys injured Favre and I thought Green Bay was done for since their backup, Aaron Rodgers was in, but he played very well.
  • UAB football: Blazers honoring ailing patients by putting their names on jerseys
    • To honor and memorialize the children and their families served by Children’s Harbor located one block off of UAB’s campus, the Blazer football team will wear the names of patients on the back of their jerseys for UAB’s Homecoming game vs. Louisiana Tech. The 100 game jerseys will be presented to each child and their family after the game. 
  • The Democrats aren’t saints, but at least they don’t campaign on the platform of family values – Anti-abortion Rep. Tim Murphy, who reportedly urged abortion, resigns from Congress
  • U2 must be bored, they just released the fourth video for the song “You’re The Best Thing About Me”.
  • For the First Time in 40 Years, Rome’s Colosseum Will Open Its Top Floor to the Public
  • The New York Times did a piece about Dale Hansen.
  • Hey man, sh– happens – Watch the Saudi king get stuck in midair when his golden escalator breaks down in Russia
  • I don’t know when to take President Trump seriously, especially when he says things like this.
    • While taking photos alongside military leaders and their spouses before a dinner at the White House, President Donald Trump made an ambiguous statement, citing “the calm before the storm.”‘
      “You guys know what this represents? Maybe it’s the calm before the storm,” Trump said at the photo op Thursday night, following a meeting with his top military commanders.

  • Texas AG Ken Paxton faces new investigation under bribery statute over $100K gift
    • The company mentioned in this story is the one that performed the MRI on my back.
  • Someone hacked the White House chief of staff’s personal phone
  • I received an email from Google providing stats on how I traveled last month. I don’t mind being tracked so I think the data is kinda cool. The data would be better if I didn’t work from home. Here’s a sampling.
    • 8 cities visited this month
    • 39 places visited this month (12 new)
    • 32 hours spent in a vehicle this month
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Hey CNN, use a comma every now and then

Every morning I go to CNN.com to see what major news events I may have missed overnight. When I saw this news alert this morning, I thought somehow Kellyanne Conway became president. I guess I was still groggy, but all I could focus on was the “President Kellyanne Conway” section of the alert. But hey, a comma would have helped.

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