The stars at night are big and bright...

The stars at night are big and bright...
The stars at night are big and bright...

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

T Minus 36 Hours and Counting

Time to go over preflight checklist.

Margarita machine... check.

Checklist complete!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Movie Of The Week: The Promotion

OK, I've been wrapped up in my minitruck dealings way too hard and falling behind in the film review department. Time to make amends.

I can identify all too well with this film.

The Promotion is the story of two men working for a Chicago Grocery chain. Both battling for the same job as Manager of the company's new store and a chance to shine in the corporate spotlight. Just how far will they go to get that job?

The cast is excellent. The Oscar-nominated John C. Reilly (Chicago, Boogie Nights, Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby, Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story) and Seann William Scott (American Pie, The Rundown, Mr. Woodcock, Southland Tales) fill the roles perfectly as imperfect men struggling to keep life together at work and at home. Jenna Fischer and Lili Taylor play their loving wives.

It's a sweet yet dark story that's very well written. It's also a very funny film on many levels. The characters in the background really bring out the best in this film. It's very reminiscent of Office Space.

Seann William Scott continues to impress me with his performances. He has come so far from his American Pie days and is turning into a very well rounded and talented actor. John C. Reilly continues to add to his impressive body of work. They fit together very well in this film.

Available on DVD and currently showing on Cinemax. DVR to maximum stun setting for The Promotion.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Rumor Mill

I hear faint rumors that Alvord may soon have a grocery store once again! There is a very strong possibility that the old Pantry will reopen in the not too distant future.

It's not a done deal, but the old Magic 8 Ball says...

New Blog!

I decided rather than flood this blog and give you Minitruck tired head, I would create a new blog dedicated to the passage of HB4495.

Texans For Minitrucks

Oh, don't worry. If there's any big news I'll be sure to post it here as well.

Now get off your fat asses Please take a few moments out of your busy day and contact the House Committee on Transportation and tell them you support HB4495.

I'd really appreciate your help!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

1 Down, 6 To Go...

HB4495 was read on the House floor today and referred to the House Transportation Committee! Step 1 of 7 is complete.

Now, it's time to start working the phones and email of the committee members. I really need everyone's support with this. Please take the time to call or email the Transportation Committee members and voice your support of HB4495.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Certified A-OK!

Just got back from the cardiologist's office and things went great! Blood pressure was fine, cholesterol was good and I lost 5 pounds! He even threw me a curve ball and made me take a stress test. Passed it with flying colors.

Now I'm good to go for a whole year. Don't get me wrong, he's a nice guy and everything but I won't be upset about not seeing him for a while.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

I Finally Got A Piece Of The Pie!

The only reason I am posting this is because I had several concerned employees come to me today with their paychecks. Something was wrong. They had more money than they used to. We screwed up and didn't take out enough taxes!

Au contraire! Welcome to Obama's Economic Stimulus! Your taxes just went down. On average everyone at work gained about $20. That's an extra $20 a week in your pocket, spend it however you want.

Granted it's not a Million Dollar bonus like the a-holes at AIG got, but it's hard earned money in your pocket none the less.

I also reminded them that people making a whole lot more money than they do lost their tax break and had their taxes go back up. They didn't seem to mind.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Added To My Bucket List

I have always envied and admired surfers. I watched a documentary on Big Wave Surfers a couple nights ago called Riding Giants. It followed the sport from it's early days to present. That really lit a candle under my ever expanding ass.

Mark my words someday I WILL catch a big wave. It will probably be the cause of said bucket but by God, I AM going to do this!

T-Minus 15 Days...

Just got back from Littlesister's and have my camping pass in hand! Brother InLaw and I mapped out what goes where on the campsite and put a checklist together. This year should be fan-freakin'-tastic!

We are going to be in a new spot this year at Finish Line Campgrounds. Should be a lot less dusty if it stays dry and much drier if it rains. Win/Win.

We also put pencil to paper and figured out just how much they gross converting an old hayfield into a campground. What we figured out was we are in the wrong business!

I just need somebody to build a NASCAR track across the street from me. Win/Win.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Say Adios to Bridgeport IGA

Just yesterday I posted at Silicone Alley's that I thought Bridgeport was the next store to get remodelled and rebranded. So today I pull in the parking lot and TA-DA! Scaffolding is being erected.

I should have told her I was about to get a huge raise...

Anyway, Bridgeport's IGA is now renamed Foodliner MarketPlace. Not sure how long they will hang onto the Foodliner bit, either.

No, they didn't sell the store. Quite the opposite. We have purchased several stores over the last couple of years in Chico, Nocona, Gainesville and Denton. The Gainesville store was already called MarketPlace. That's where the name came from. During the purchases we switched primary warehouses and are no longer an IGA. Now we are an Affilliated store. We still buy some things from our old primary supplier, but you won't find any more "Parade" items. You'll find "SureFine" on the shelves now.

Before it's all said and done all our IGA's will be renamed MarketPlace. Same people, new name.

Expect the entrance to be fubar for about a week.

Monday, March 16, 2009

I Am A Political Power Broker!

As some of you may know I own a Japanese KEI Class Truck (minitruck). It's a '99 Suzuki Carry 4x4. The thing is a blast to drive and never fails to turn heads. Maybe it's the right hand drive or maybe it's the stunningly handsome man behind the wheel. I prefer to think it's the latter.

Anyway, as fun as these are to drive they aren't exactly street legal in Texas. That may be about to change thanks to yours truly and State Rep. Phil King. Thru my one man campaign I convinced Rep. King to introduce HB4495 in the Texas Legislature!

HB4495 will make these KEI Class vehicles street legal (excluding Interstates) and give us a 55MHP speed limit. Currently I am able to drive it on the highway under farm use provisions, like a John Deere Gator or Kawasaki Mule. But, I have to display a SMV sign and a flag on an 8ft pole. I'm also restricted to a 25 mile radius from home. HB4495 will change all that!

Heheh.... I'm giddy!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

The Chris Isaak Hour

Ya can't help but love Chris Isaak. He's so retro and hip at the same time. I'm definitely an Isaakophile.

I really liked "The Chris Isaak Show" on Showtime. It's a shame it was cancelled. Bright, talented, family friendly humor is hard to find. Chris always turns out a classy product along with a first rate musical performance.

Such is the case with his latest project, The Chris Isaak Hour on A&E The Bio Channel. He uses his cred in the music industry to draw some impressive guests. Stevie Nicks and Trisha Yearwood are hard to find singing songs like Walkin' After Midnight and Red River Valley. Chris digs beneath the surface and gets to the roots of their musical influence, then exploits it, much to your pleasure.

All in all it's a very entertaining program and I expect it to evolve into something really special. Do yourself a favor and set your DVR to KILL for The Chris Isaak Hour 9 pm Thursdays on the Bio Channel .

The Pic

I love this picture. It's so Joe Duty.

But, oddly enough it is about as far removed from The WC as is physically possible. I stumbled across it during some random Google search when it reached out and grabbed me. That is exactly where I came from all wrapped up in a neat little package.

The Lonesome Buckwhips are a "country" band from New Zealand somewhat along the lines of Asleep At The Wheel, but without the Western Swing. Is that confusing enough?

Their music is more folksy than country in the traditional sense. Trust me you won't mistake them for Bob Wills. But, their songs are blue collar driven and infused with humor.

The Flight of The Conchords are in no danger, but The Lonesone Buckwhips are definitely entertaining.

That's where the pic came from.

It's a bird, it's a plane, it's...

A rare copy of the first comic book featuring Superman has sold for $317,200 in an Internet auction. The previous owner had bought it secondhand for less than a buck.It is one of the highest prices ever paid for a comic book, probably a testament to the volume's rarity and excellent condition.

Only about 100 copies of Action Comics No. 1 are known to exist, and they seldom come up for sale.

The previous owner had purchased it in a secondhand store in the early 1950s when he was 9 years old.

He paid 35 cents.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Movie Of The Week: The Bridge On The River Kwai

I should be crawling into bed right now, but TCM has played an evil trick on me and I'm forced to watch this 3 hour epic.

The Bridge On The River Kwai is a masterpiece. William Holden, Alec Guinness, Jack Hawkins and Sessue Hayakawa lead a magnificent cast in a story of POW's in Japanese held Thailand forced to build a bridge on the Burma railway. The film is a work of fiction but borrows the construction of the Burma Railway in 1942-43 for its historical setting.

The POW camp is run by the sadistic Colonel Saito (Sessue Hayakawa), his sole concern is the construction of his bridge by the deadline. The Senior POW is Colonel Nicholson (Alec Guinness). His sole concern is proper military order. Both men are blinded by their vision.

The lone American in the camp is US Navy Commander Shears (William Holden), who has been held prisoner long before the British arrive and routinely bribes guards to ensure he gets sick duty, which allows him to avoid hard labor.

Shears manages to escape and returns to friendly territory. But he has a secret uncovered and is blackmailed by Major Warden (Jack Hawkins), a member of the British Special Forces, to lead a demolition team back to destroy the bridge.

Meanwhile, Colonel Nicholson has taken control of the construction. He inspires the men to stop sabotage efforts and build a solid, first rate bridge to instill esprit de corps. It is only when he discovers the demolition team's explosives that he realises what he has done.

It's a magnificent film. The cinematography is breathtaking and the performances stunning. There's a reason this film cleaned up at the 1957 film awards taking home 3 Golden Globes and 7 Oscars. It is widely regarded as one of the best films ever made.

In 1997, this film was deemed "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant" and selected for preservation in the United States Library of Congress National Film Registry.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Why Tuesdays Suck

Laundry Day.

A Musical Interlude

EDIT: Better audio quality version.

Also without the cocaine, quaalude and marijuana into.

But, hey... it was the 80's!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Ya know what? This was a bad idea.

These are not the droids you are looking for...

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Spring Forward, Fall Back

Yeah, you forgot didn't you?

T Minus 27Days and Counting

For those of you that couldn't give a rat's ass about NASCAR, tune out now.

27 days and counting until NASCAR returns to Texas Motor Speedway with the Samsung 500 weekend. OK, a couple days earlier if you count practice and qualifying. But this is the Big Kahuna. The April race always draws the biggest crowd at TMS. If the weather follows the long range prediction, it should be perfect racing conditions.

I'm really looking forward to the O'Reilly 300 truck race. The Camping World Series consistently puts on the best racing you'll see. So far it's shaping up to see who'll be the one to knock Kyle Busch off his pedestal. Tickets are still available, and they're cheap.

This year we will be staying in our own campsite. Oh, we'll still be hanging with the same bunch we have for the last few years, but we'll have our own campers and space to retreat to when we need a break. Rumor has it Littlesister will join the fun this year.

The "Skuzzuki", my 4x4 Japanese minitruck, is prepped and ready for campground prowling. It was perfect transportation for us to the track from the campground last race. Walking is for the birds. Trust me when I say that.

Me? I have season tickets in hand and can't wait. I'm still searching for that cute little racegirl to share the experience with.

Friday, March 6, 2009

And You Thought The Snake In The Toilet Was Bad...

What goes on between a man, a woman, a box of wine and some Astrolube is one thing.

But this Chinese chair stuff is for the birds!

In China, a fourteen-year-old boy was killed when the chair he was sitting on exploded. Parts of the chair entered the boy’s rectum. The result was extensive bleeding, and it killed him.

The killer chair is a gas cylinder type, not unlike those commonly seen at most computer work stations and home offices. The height is altered by an adjustable cylinder containing highly pressurized gas. It is this high pressure cylinder that exploded.

In 2007, another chair exploded propelling a 20cm piece of shrapnel into the backside of a 68-year-old man. He lived.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

It's Deja-Vu All Over Again

Stepped out my backdoor yesterday afternoon to go water cattle and was greeted with a face full of smoke. It was barely a year ago that I narrowly escaped being burned out of house and home by a grassfire. This time I got lucky and was spared any damage. It was contained before it reached my land.

The grassfire started in our old "East Pasture". My Dad sold it off years ago and now it's filled with trailerhouses. Apparently one of those was the source and a gusty south wind helped whip it into a fury. It reached an old windbreak and got pretty intense for a bit.

Many thanks to the Chico and Alvord firefighters that arrived quickly and got the fire under control before things got out of hand.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Texas Independance Day

Almost let this one slip past and I should be ashamed for forgetting. Today is Texas Independance Day! 173 years ago today our founding fathers signed the Texas Declaration of Independance which had been drawn up overnight at Washington on the Brazos while a fierce battle raged 150 miles away at The Alamo.

"…the people of Texas do now constitute a free, Sovereign, and independent republic, and are fully invested with all the rights and attributes which properly belong to independent nations; and, conscious of the rectitude of our intentions, we fearlessly and confidently commit the issue to the decision of the Supreme arbiter of the destinies of nations."

And with those words, the people of the Republic of Texas declared independence from Mexico on this day, March 2, 1836.

A month later, the Treaty of Velasco was signed by General Santa Anna and David G. Burnet (the interim president of the Republic of Texas, prior to Sam Houston taking the reins) at what is now Surfside Beach. The treaty formally ended the Texas Revolution and recognized the Republic of Texas as a sovereign nation. The Republic existed as an independent nation for ten years before being annexed by the United States as the 28th state in the union.