The stars at night are big and bright...

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

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Amazon Prime Air v2.0

Jeremy Clarkson unveils the latest version of the Amazon Prime Air drone as only Jeremy Clarkson can.
Unfortunately unless they a)extend the range or b)build a distribution center in Wise County, I won't be getting any of these airborne deliveries.

Friday, November 27, 2015

Thursday, November 26, 2015

The Man in the High Castle

Ran across a discussion of this new series on Amazon Prime. The premise is it's 1962, the United States lost World War II and is divided up between Nazi Germany and the Japanese Empire. Everything East of the Rocky Mountains is part of the 3rd Reich. West of the Rockies is part of the Japanese Empire. Hitler is still alive and is a peace maker.

Intriguing to say the least.

I'm only on Episode 2, but the hook is set deep. I love period pieces to begin with, but this is beyond exceptional. I even ordered an Amazon Fire Stick so I can watch the remaining episodes on big screen instead of my computer monitor.

The all of Season 1 is available on Amazon Prime.


Monday, November 23, 2015

No Justice, No Peace

If you're not watching Fargo, you're missing the best show EVER made for television. I'm including The Sopranos and every other series ever made.

There is no show that has ever matched the week to week level of greatness this series has achieved. Writing, direction, photography, casting, set decoration.

If it doesn't sweep the Emmys there is no justice and I'm summoning Hanzee Dent to settle the score.

Well OK then

FX has renewed “Fargo” for a third installment, Variety has learned. The pickup comes in the midst of the anthology’s second season.

Creator Noah Hawley is set to return to the critically-acclaimed and award-winning series, along with exec producers Warren Littlefield, John Cameron and Joel and Ethan Coen.

Read more at Variety.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Get in the Zone...

No, I'm not referring to the Dallas Cowboys and their apparent allergy to entering the End Zone. I have neither the time nor the bandwidth to tackle that issue.

I had a very odd problem today. The alternator on my '06 F-350 wasn't charging. It had a lifetime warranty so I yanked it off and swapped it for another one at Autozone. Bought one there in the first place so if I had a problem on the road it would be an easy exchange. That turned out not to be the case because they couldn't find it in the computer, but I digress. We'll cover this later.

Put the new alternator on and the dang thing wouldn't charge. I checked everything that was obvious (wires, fuses, ect) but found nothing. Checked my Scangauge and no fault codes. There is no shame in admitting defeat, especially with a 6.0 Powerstroke. So I took it to a friend that is a former Ford tech and had done work for me in the past, including installing the alternator last February and showing me a really cool little kickstand on the belt tensioner to remove the serpentine belt after I had struggled with it for wayyy too long. He went over it and couldn't find the problem. 

After about an hour of testing fuses and connections he remembered something he had seen before. There is a wiring harness connector between the fender and right hand battery that goes to the 2nd alternator if you have one. If you don't have one it's just a loop or jumper connection. A mouse had chewed through the jumper wire. He said for some reason mice love that wire. A 10 cent crimp butt connector and everything started working.

Guess I should give Autozone credit for their alternator not being bad, but man it was quite the hassle getting them to honor the warranty because they couldn't find it in their computer. I know I bought it there because I posted about it talking to Ford techs on a Ford Truck forum when I bought it and even listed the Autozone part number (Duralast DL3668-8-11). Probably should have tested it before exchanging, too...

Anyway, sorry about that Autozone. But you need to step up that customer service a smidge. Thank goodness I wasn't on the road and had to exchange it. Now I have to dig out my 2014 tax receipts so they will re-enter it in their computer system. 

Saturday, November 14, 2015

2 over easy w/ sausage, scattered, smothered and covered.

The steak and eggs ain't bad either!

Update: This clip was from the Season 6 finale that aired Sunday. Tony went to Charleston, SC and was guided by Sean Brock. The highlight was dinner with Charleston resident Bill Murray. I had no idea he lived there and apparently he's reluctant to recommend others to move there.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Don't get sick in Bowie

Bowie Memorial Hospital is closing at 7 a.m. November 16th. 138 hospital employees and 336 jobs in the area will be affected.

A vote to form a Hospital District would have kept the facility open but was defeated by 138 votes. After a 2 hour deliberation board members voted to close the facility.

The nearest hospitals to Bowie will be Nocona General in Nocona (20mi) Clay County Memorial in Henrietta (27mi) and Wise Regional in Decatur (27mi).

Saturday, November 7, 2015

It gets worse.

If you thought that last story was shocking. You'd better sit down...

Three days after a 6-year-old boy was shot and killed by officers in a barrage of gunfire that also critically wounded the child’s father, authorities late Friday night arrested two of the four officers involved on one count each of second-degree murder and attempted second-degree murder.

Local deputy marshals Lt. Derrick Stafford, 32, and Norris Greenhouse Jr., 23, were on the scene when officers fired at least 18 rounds at an unarmed man and his son Tuesday night in Marksville, authorities said, after cornering the driver for unknown reasons following a chase.

State Police Superintendent Col. Mike Edmonson, who announced the arrests late Friday night as part of his agency’s investigation of the shooting, said of body camera footage of the incident: “It is one of the most disturbing scenes I have seen.”

Key details of the deadly episode remained a mystery even to the investigators early Friday, as two of the four agents in the event refused to speak to authorities 72 hours after the killing, prompting a rare public expression of misgivings toward officers by a law enforcement counterpart.

“It’s more concerning the longer it takes (for them) to talk to us,” said Edmonson earlier Friday. “All we want to know is what happened.”

Had his own troopers been involved in a similar altercation, he said, “we would have already interviewed them.”

Edmonson declined to say whether Stafford and Greenhouse were the two who were silent.

“Tonight is about Jeremy Mardis,” he said, referring to the first-grader shot to death. “That young man did not deserve to die like that.”

Jeremy was still in his seat belt at the time.

“That little boy was buckled in the front seat of that vehicle — and that is how he died,” Edmonson said.

Marksville Police Chief Elster Smith Jr., whose four officers were involved in the Tuesday night incident, said the other two lawmen involved are Lt. Jason Brouillette and Sgt. Kenneth Parnell.

More here, but it turns your stomach.

I hope they seek the Death Penalty.

Two New Jersey Policemen Convicted of Official Misconduct

After a five-week trial, an Essex County jury found Sean Courter, 35, of Englishtown, and Orlando Trinidad, 34, of Bloomfield, guilty of official misconduct, tampering with public records, falsifying public records and false swearing. Trinidad also was found guilty of simple assault. They face minimum prison sentences of five years.

A third police officer, Albert Sutterlin, pleaded guilty in October 2013 to falsifying and tampering with records. He resigned from the police department, according to the prosecutor's office.

The officers initially said the motorist, Marcus Jeter, tried to grab Courter's gun and struck Trinidad during a traffic stop on the Garden State Parkway in June 2012.

For almost a year, officials had to rely on dashboard video footage only from Courter's vehicle. Based on the initial police reports, Jeter was charged with eluding, resisting arrest, aggravated assault and attempting to disarm an officer. He later was convicted and sentenced to five years in prison.

But Jeter's lawyer requested video footage from a second camera, which was on the dashboard of another police vehicle that arrived on the scene. The footage clearly showed Jeter holding his hands in the air during the stop.

Justice was served here and we need a lot more of it. Officers should be held accountable for their actions. This is a perfect example of why every officer should be required to wear a body camera. Cameras don't lie.

You can't use the excuse of a non-functioning camera either. If it don't work, neither do you. Would they take to the street if their gun didn't work?

The level of quality we've allowed law enforcement to sink is disgraceful. Joe Friday on his worst day wouldn't like it either.

I really try not to overload the board with stories like these, but then again I don't feel like I'm being a good American if I sit back and just let it happen.

Friday, November 6, 2015

As Wichita Falls, So Falls Wichita Falls

KFDX airs, retracts false report claiming Graham ISD promoted teacher under investigation

Despite a television news report to the contrary, the Graham Independent School District is not promoting the unidentified employee under investigation by local police, and the police are not seeking charges against a student who may be involved. The station later retracted the story.

A Wednesday night report allegedly compiled by Stephanie Garland of KFDX-TV in Wichita Falls, falsely claimed that an ongoing Graham police investigation into accusations of a student-employee relationship culminated in the punishment, and criminal prosecution, of the student and the promotion of the employee. The report aired on the station's 10 p.m. Wednesday newscast.

The story, which cites Graham Independent School District Superintendent Sonny Cruse, is entirely fabricated, Cruse said, except for the portion that states the investigation into the allegations is ongoing. Cruse said he missed the broadcast but found the story posted on the station's website at 10:19 p.m. Wednesday.

“I read it and it made me angry,” Cruse said. “I didn't speak with them (before the story aired).”

The district employee who is under investigation, an instructional aide, remains on administrative leave, Cruse told The Graham Leader Thursday morning.

The superintendent was alerted to the story by the school's resource officer, Ty Viehmann, Wednesday night and immediately contacted the reporter to clear things up.

Cruse said he spoke with the reporter after the report had aired, and Garland told him that she had a phone conversation with someone who identified himself as Cruse and made the statements she cited in her report.

“She sounded shocked,” Cruse said. “I told her — I was honest — I said, ‘I'm livid.' I said, ‘I'm very angry now because that is a total false report.'”

KFDX News Director Doug Bilyeu acknowledged the mistake and confirmed that Garland reported wrong information, but, as of press time, he could provide no further information on how this information was acquired.

Police Chief Tony Widner confirmed that he spoke with Garland on Wednesday evening and did nothing but confirm that the agency's investigation into the allegations is ongoing. The reporter, he said, assumed the information she had was correct and at no time asked the chief to confirm or deny her information.

On Oct. 16, the GISD and the GPD released statements confirming that the district and the agency were investigating allegations of an inappropriate relationship between an unidentified district employee and an unidentified student. No additional information has been released.

Cruse admitted to some frustration with the media and with the fact that retractions and story corrections are often downplayed.

“I watched it this morning, and they didn't lead with a retraction,” he said. “My experience is when people retract a story, they bury it. If it was a headline story, why is it not a headline retraction? People want us to be ethical; the media should be ethical also.”

On Thursday morning, Widner confirmed that the investigation into the original incident is ongoing and that the police are not seeking charges against any student related to the investigation.

Cruse said he is uncertain if the district can take legal action against the individual who misrepresented himself as the superintendent, but added he will reach out to the school district's attorney on the matter.

Journalism 101, folks. Fact check your sources, especially if it's volunteered info over the phone. That's not a mistake KFDX legend Megan Henderson (yeah, THAT Megan Henderson) would have made and I bet ol' Joe Brown is spinning in his grave.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Today In History

Howard Hughes' famous Spruce Goose H-4 Hercules took it's one and only flight and became the largest airplane ever to fly. After its completion, it was three times larger than the largest aircraft built before it. Now surpassed by the Antonov 225, it still holds the records for widest wingspan and the largest flying boat ever.

It now resides at the Evergreen Aviation Educational Center in McMinnville, Oregon.