Sunday, August 31, 2014

Did The Prophet JD Granger Foresee The Irving Music Factory Making Panther Island Pavilion Look Like A Hillbilly Mudpit?

No, that is not an artist's rendering of what the Panther Island Pavilion part of the Trinity River Vision Boondoggle will look like upon completion.

What you are looking at is an artist's rendering of what another Dallas Metroplex music venue will look like upon completion.

This past Thursday I blogged a blogging titled Today I Learned JD Granger Is A Panther Island Prophet With A Shack Fort Worth's Latest Music Venue after I was appalled at the appalling propagandizing hubris in an article in DFW.com touting J.D. Granger as a prophet for having the imaginary vision to turn a chunk of land that is not an island into the world's premiere music venue.

I may be slightly exaggerating.

Earlier in the month I recollect complaining about the Fort Worth Star-Telegram blocking online articles from non-subscribers. I suggested that a much better local news source, one that covered the entire Dallas Metroplex, was WFAA's website. WFAA covers  local  news in a fair and unbiased way, free of propaganda, unlike the Star-Telegram.

In other words from WFAA you would not read things like a new Fort Worth sporting goods store would be the #1 tourist attraction in Texas, drawing millions of tourists a year. From WFAA you would not read that an extremely lame collection of little stores was the first public market in Texas and that it was modeled after Seattle's Pike Place Market, and public markets in Europe. From WFAA you would not read that a public works project the public has not voted for would turn Fort Worth into the Vancouver of the South. From WFAA you would not read that J.D. Granger is a prophet.

No, for that type of idiotic propaganda you need to be a subscriber to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, or read the Star-Telegram's  DFW.com publication.

Now, back to that artist's rendering at the top. That rendering is from WFAA's website, in an article titled Entertainment Destination Coming to Los Colinas. You likely will not be reading about this in the Star-Telegram. Telling its readers about this development in Irving would make the Panther Island Pavilion propaganda seem even sillier.

As in the development in Irving appears to be real, while J.D. Granger's Panther Island Pavilion seems to be lacking quite a few things, not the least of which is an actual island.

Saturday night ground was broken in Los Colinas for the Irving Music Factory. A complex with more than 25 restaurants and entertainment venues. With a movie theater, plus an indoor/outdoor concert hall.

How did this project come to be?

Well, seven years ago voters in Irving did something voters in Fort Worth are not allowed to do. Irving voters voted to fund a public works project. Complications arose after the BIG yes vote which kept construction from starting til August 30, 2014.

In the article about J.D. Granger being a prophet we learned he has prophesied that his Panther Island Pavilion music venue is nowhere near finished. And just like with most of J.D. Granger's projects, there is no project timeline letting us know when his Panther Island Pavilion project will be finished. Or an artist's rendering of what it will look like if it ever gets finished.

Meanwhile that voted for by the voters public works project in Irving is currently projected to be completed in spring of 2016. Two years before J.D. Granger's bridges over nothing are scheduled to be completed.

And it goes without saying, but I will say it anyway, eminent domain has not been abused in Irving to bring about the Irving Music Factory....

The Last Day Of August Biking In Arlington With The River Legacy Park Crowd

On this last day of August I decided I'd not been riding my bike enough, so I rolled my motorized transport device to Arlington, to River Legacy Park, to roll my non-motorized wheels on the River Legacy mountain bike trails.

Along with a lot of other wheel rollers and hikers.

In the picture my handlebars are in a quandary, trying to decide whether to go north on the relatively boring North Loop, or take the North Loop Bypass to the right. My handlebars opted for the bypass, the decision made when a group of four slowpokes arrived and took the North Loop option.

Soon after you roll past the River Legacy trail head you come to one of the more difficult ups and downs on the trails.

Today a family consisting of a mom and dad and three young kids had that first up and down congested. I waited about five minutes for the trail to clear. As I waited I was thinking to myself that these trails are not really kid friendly. That first up and down required the bikes to be walked up and down by the parental units, whilst the kids walked. This did not bode well for the rest of their bike ride, what with there being a lot of ups and downs.

About a half hour later I was zipping along, fast and suddenly the aforementioned family was coming at me, going the wrong way on the one-way trail. I slammed the brakes. I told the dad they were going the wrong direction. The dad asked how to get back to the parking lot. I did not know how to give exact directions from that location. And the dad was very impatient. I asked what trail they'd just been on, to which the dad replied "can't you just tell us how to get out of here?"

Well. I pointed north and said I think that trail will take you to a straight trail that will take you to the paved trail. He said thanks and zipped off, leaving the wife and kids behind. I elaborated on the directions, as best I could, to the wife. I assume they made it out and are not still rolling around, lost. I suppose I could have lead them out of there, but I found the dad sort of annoying and I knew it would be a very slow operation. That and I was having myself a mighty fine time.

This was not the first time I've come upon someone lost and confused on the River Legacy trails. Previous times I've been able to easily point the lost party in the right direction.

With the River Legacy Park mountain bike trails being so popular methinks maybe some new signage needs to be added to the already excellent signage. Maybe arrows at each junction pointing the way back to the trailhead.

Changing the subject to something else.

I'm feeling a bit Rip Van Winklish, what with August zipping by so fast, with September starting up tomorrow, also likely zipping by fast. And then it will be October with the dreaded, by me, Holiday Season, starting up and in another blink of the eye it will by Happy New Year, it's 2015.

By the way, I've already got all my Christmas shopping done.....

Saturday, August 30, 2014

The Last Saturday Of August Rolling My Wheels In Fort Worth's Gateway Park Before Town Talk Treasure Hunting

I rolled my wheels in Gateway Park on Thursday because I had had myself such a mighty fine time doing so on Tuesday and the precipitation predictors were predicting precipitation on Friday, which I figured if the predicted precipitation did precipitate that it would render the Gateway Park trails into being a muddy mess.

Well, the precipitation did precipitate just as predicted Friday morning.

With today being my regularly scheduled Saturday Town Talk visit which I've not visited on Saturday for about a  month, rendering my regular schedule all asunder, I decided to attempt rolling my wheels at Gateway Park today, pre-Town Talk, figuring I could just roll on the paved trails if the unpaved trails were muddy.

I was pleased to discover, along with a lot of other wheel rollers, that yesterday's rain did not result in muddy mountain bike trails in Gateway Park.

For the first time since I've been enjoying these trails I did the entire loop twice. I have no idea how many miles that is. I suspect around 10.

When the Town Talk parking lot came into view it appeared to be overflowing, with people parking on the street, which I do not think is likely legal parking. I drove on to the parking lot, ready to bail, if I could not find a parking spot.

I did not bail.

I don't think I've ever seen the inside of Town Talk so crowded. But the checkout lines were not too bad, so I was able to make it out of there with a lot of chicken thighs, cauliflower, sharp cheese from a place called England, smoked sausages, sweet potato rolls, whole grain bagels, a case of pumpkin spice Siggis Icelandic yogurt and other stuff I'm not remembering right now.

Miss Mary K, do you remember Town Talk's parking lot being filled to overflowing during your years of Town Talking? Methinks Town Talk needs to move to a bigger location. Like the old Krogers that's been long abandoned a short distance from my abode. That would be very convenient. And it comes with a huge parking lot.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Today I Was Almost Swept Away In Arlington By A Flooding Village Creek

The predicted precipitation precipitated just as predicted, early this morning, precipitating on me the entire time I was in the pool.

Thunder was also predicted. I heard only one boom, a loud one, prior to exiting my abode.

By noon blue sky returned.

So, needing vittles from ALDI and Walmart, I decided to walk with the Indian Ghosts in Arlington's Village Creek Natural Historical Area where I was not too surprised to see Village Creek moving a lot of water.

And litter.

You can see the litter and hear the roar of Village Creek in the video below...

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Today I Learned JD Granger Is A Panther Island Prophet With A Shack Fort Worth's Latest Music Venue

This morning Elsie Hotpepper emailed me an email which took hours to get to me. The subject line of that email simply said "I'm gagging".

The email had a link to an article in DFW.com titled Panther Island Pavilion roaring along on the Trinity.

It did not take much reading to come to verbiage that was gag worthy, as in the first sentence....

It’s tempting to call JD Granger a prophet.

Let's just go through this article, bit by bit, commenting as we go. It is tempting to call JD Granger a prophet? From what would such a temptation come? Well, the article tells us....

Last year, Granger, the executive director of the Trinity River Vision Authority, predicted what would happen at Panther Island Pavilion in 2014 with almost uncanny accuracy.

“Festivals are becoming a business unto themselves,” Granger told me in May 2013. “We are set up to do something really crazy with good services. We could do something that could really put Fort Worth on a competitive music footing.”

What an understatement that turned out to be.

Understatement? How about dumb statement? I vaguely recollect having fun making fun of these JD Granger quotes before, likely after a previous Preston Jones bit of propaganda buffoonery. So, JD's uncanny prediction was that festivals are becoming a business unto themselves, whatever that means. And that JD's boondoggle is set up to do something really crazy. With good services. Again, whatever that means. Really putting Fort Worth on a competitive music footing.

Yeah, that really sounds like one impressive uncanny prediction. A competitive music footing? Competitive with whom?

Panther Island Pavilion, perhaps more than any other venue of its size in the city, has become a hub of near-constant activity over the past 12 months, hosting multiple music-related events, including its popular Rockin’ the River concert series (full disclosure: DFW.com is a media sponsor), as well as the return of the Fort Worth Music Festival and Untapped.

Panther Island Pavilion, perhaps more than any other venue of its size in the city, has become a hub of near-constant activity? Perhaps more than any other venue of its size in the city? What other venues are there of whatever size, in Fort Worth, that Panther Island Pavilion perhaps is more busy than?

Full disclosure: DFW. com is a media sponsor? How about going for totally full disclosure and disclose that DFW.com is a Fort Worth Star-Telegram propaganda production designed to compete with Fort Worth Weekly?

“When looking at the demographics we were excited to see that people from all over North Texas are coming to events held at Panther Island Pavilion,” Granger says. “Week in and week out, our summer series had the highest attendance we’ve seen in the history of the venue. It’s a great feeling to know this record-breaking summer was a result of people traveling from all over the Metroplex.”

And how did Granger get this data that let him know that people were coming from all over North Texas to events at Panther Island Pavilion? Did JD and his minions wander around asking people where they were from? The highest attendance in the history of the venue? Uh, how long does that history go back? Three years? Or is it four? It feels great knowing that the record breaking crowds came about from people traveling from all over the Metroplex? I thought they were coming from all over North Texas?

And the outdoor venue, situated just outside downtown Fort Worth on the banks of the Trinity River, is nowhere near finished.

I would hope the outdoor venue is nowhere near finished. Its current state is extremely tacky. Although, I must say the outhouses are unusually elegant for a Fort Worth venue.

Along with this weekend’s Clearfork Music Festival, there are myriad events scheduled throughout September, from the Most Good Music Festival (Sept. 6), a Salvation Army benefit featuring performers such as Stoney LaRue and Jack Ingram, to the seventh annual Dia de Los Toadies (Sept. 12-13), which will feature Fort Worth rock legends the Toadies playing their acclaimed Rubberneck album in its entirety, and the Beer, Bourbon and Brisket Festival (Sept. 20), with Oktoberfest closing out the month of September (Sept. 25-27) at the Shack, Panther Island Pavilion’s newly opened indoor venue.

Okay, what I got out of the above paragraph of blah blah blah about all the famous performers set to perform at Panther Island Pavilion next month is the last part, that being the part about Oktoberfest closing out the month at the Shack, Panther Island Pavilion's newly opened venue.

I had not heard of the Shack. A little Googling brought me to the Shack, on the Panther Island Pavilion Facebook page. Below is a picture of the Shack? What is it? The abandoned building which used to house the Tandy Subway cars?


Also on the Panther Island Pavilion Facebook page I found the below entry about the article on DFW.com which we are currently discussing.

Yeah, they really should be blushing. Blushing from embarrassment. Now, back to the article...

It’s an eclectic flurry of events, designed to appeal to as broad a swath of the public as possible, bringing not only die-hard music fans out to Panther Island, but the city itself.

Does the above sentence make any sense to anyone? Designed not only to bring out die-hard music fans, but the city itself?

“The success of Panther Island Pavilion has exceeded our expectatins,” Granger says. “We have a packed schedule, including seven events over the next month, but most importantly, it’s bringing a new and diverse audience to Panther Island.”

I copied and pasted the above verbatim. The word out of JD Granger's mouth was "expectatins". The success has exceeded *expectatins? What were their expectatins? Limited success? Most importantly it's bringing a new and diverse audience to Panther Island? Why is this important? How does JD measure the diversity? And please the Panther Island nonsense really needs to stop. There is no island. And even if the un-needed flood diversion channel ever flows water under the three bridges over nothing, this really still will not be what anyone who respects the meaning of words could legitimately call an island.

And why does the Executive Director of the Trinity River Vision Boondoggle spend time worrying about music venues and imaginary islands? Was he not hired, after an extensive search to find the most qualified man available, to over see the building of a much needed flood control project, along with some supposedly much needed economic development? I really don't think back when the Boondoggle first started Boondoggling that anyone thought that what was meant by economic development was "festivals becoming a business unto themselves."

And then there is the last sentence in this very bizarre propaganda piece...

In other words, one of the city’s marquee venues is roaring right along.

Marquee venues? One of Fort Worth's marquee venues? What are Fort Worth's other marquee venues? Billy Bob's Over Texas? The Concerts in the Gardens? The Coyote Drive-In Movie Theater? What? Where?

*As expected the Panther Island Pavilion roaring along on the Trinity article has changed JD Granger's colorful "expectatins" to "expectations".

Rolling My Wheels In Fort Worth's Gateway Park Anticipating A Sickening Email From Elsie Hotpepper

Rain is predicted to precipitate tomorrow. Precipitation predictions usually don't precipitate, but I had myself such a mighty fine time mountain biking in Fort Worth's Gateway Park on Tuesday that I decided to do so again today, in advance of the possible arrival of mud.

That is not my usual Gateway Park photo op location you see my shady handlebars looking at. This location is a short distance up stream from my favorite Gateway Park photo op location.

About a minute before I was scheduled to leave my abode to head west to Gateway Park I got a text message from Elsie  Hotpepper saying...

"I sent you an email that will either make you sick or provide you easy blog fodder. Or both."

Well, of course I was intrigued and so quickly checked my email to find nothing from Elsie Hotpepper. I texted Elsie back with the no email info and that I was heading out to go biking. Elsie said to text again when I got back if the email had still not arrived.

I arrived back to still find no Elsie Hotpepper email. So, I tried to text the message that there was still no email. But I got a "sending message failed" message. Twice.

So, I emailed Elsie Hotpepper that the email was still missing and that texting her no longer worked.

I sent that email and then suddenly the missing email showed up, time stamped hours earlier. The subject line of the Elsie Hotpepper email said "I'm gagging". Which amped up the being intrigued thing.

The email had a link to a webpage. I soon saw that which had Elsie Hotpepper gagging.

I will blog about that which has us gagging in my next blogging....

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

This Afternoon I Got The Good News That Spencer Jack Has Escaped Alcatraz

This afternoon, via email, I received fairly good evidence that Spencer Jack's Big San Francisco Adventure has come to an end.

The email was from Spencer Jack's dad, well, actually it was two emails, containing a total of seven pictures and one line of text with that text saying...

"Spencer Jack and I escaped from Alcatraz, Trolley ride to Chinatown and darted back to the airport via BART."

It was the darting back to the airport via BART part of the text which led me to deduce that Spencer Jack's Big San Francisco Adventure was over.

I am fairly certain that the purpose behind Spencer Jack's dad taking him to San Francisco was not to scare Spencer Jack straight by putting the fear of being behind bars in Spencer's fragile young mind.

Then again, the above picture of Spencer Jack caged up in Alcatraz is a bit disturbing. Spencer looks very worried.


I am guessing, due to Spencer Jack looking relieved, the above picture was taken after the escape from Alcatraz. According to a reliable source, Spencer Jack and his dad escaped Alcatraz to take a trolley to Chinatown, which is where Spencer Jack is in the picture below.



Where Spencer Jack is standing in Chinatown does not look like the Chinatown I remember. But, it has been at least 20 years since I've been in San Francisco's Chinatown, I no longer trust my aged memory. I remember Chinatown as extremely crowded, with sensory overload from all the visual stimulation. And it smelled good.

And then there's BART. Bay Area Rapid Transit.

BART seems an odd acronym for a town's transit system. But not as odd as Seattle's South Lake Union Trolley, which has Seattle people in transit mode saying something like let's ride the SLUT to the Burger King on Lake Union.


Where I am currently located in Texas I need not worry about taking a BART or a SLUT anywhere. The only public transit available to residents of Fort Worth is called the T. The T is made up of very bare bones type buses of the sort no one would consider a luxury ride. Riding Fort Worth's T, to me, is like riding a carnival ride in a very bad theme park. In other words, fasten your seatbelts, you are in for a bumpy ride. However, unfortunately, there are no seatbelts to fasten.

Is Fort Worth the only town in America with a  population over a half million with no public transit in bus or rail form which takes the public directly to its airport?

When a Fort Worth native flies into a modern American city, like San Francisco, Seattle, Los Angeles, San Diego, New York City, Chicago, Portland, Miami.

Or Dallas.

And sees the town is connected to the airport by public transit in the form of bus or light rail or both does it occur to the Fort Worthian that maybe their town needs to do some modernizing?

I just remembered the answer. In Fort Worth only poor people use public transit......

Walking With The Fosdick Ducks Around Green Fosdick Lake's Sputtering Fountain

Today I was back at Fort Worth's Oakland Lake Park to walk around the increasingly green Fosdick Lake for the first time in a week, give or take a day.

My use of the "green" word to describe Fosdick Lake is not intended to indicate Fosdick Lake is becoming increasingly eco-friendly.

My use of the "green" word refers to the increasing amount of green algae that appears to be choking this little lake.

Back when the Fosdick Fountain mysteriously appeared I thought its aerating spewing of lake water might help mitigate the annual phenomenon of Fosdick Lake growing green stuff when the lake water was exposed to too much summer HEAT.

But, right when Fosdick Lake needs all the aerating it can get, Fosdick Fountain is in sputter mode, barely burbling, likely providing very little, if any, aerating.

Anyway, I had myself a mighty fine time today having a sauna steam bath whilst walking with the ducks around Fosdick Lake.

You can see the aforementioned ducks and the sputtering Fosdick Fountain in the video below...

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

This Afternoon Spencer Jack Took Me Down San Francisco's Lombard Street

My favorite nephew Jason always does what he says he is going to do. Yesterday Jason indicated that today Spencer Jack would be sending me a photo of San Francisco's Lombard Street, and true to Jason's word, that photo arrived about an hour ago, with accompanying text saying....

"Photo documentation of Spencer Jack photographing Lombard Street."

I suspect Spencer Jack and his dad were on some sort of tourist tour and not driving themselves around San Francisco. To get the full Lombard Street experience one must drive oneself up the steep hill that leads to the famous downhill part of the street, you reach the crest and then descend slowly, brakes applied pretty much the entire time.

Lombard Street is memorable to my memory for a couple reasons. One being the last time I attempted to drive down Lombard Street I was unable to, due to the fact my clutch would not allow me to ascend to the summit.

The main reason Lombard Street is memorable to my memory is due to the fact that it was on the last family vacation I was ever to take that we drove down Lombard Street.

The summer after my freshman year of high school we took our first family vacation to California and Disneyland. At that point in time there was an attraction in Disneyland called, I think, America the Beautiful in Circlevision. You stood while moving images surrounded you. You were advised to hold on to the handrails. At one point the Circlevision took us down Lombard Street. It was very dizzying.

We had so much fun on that family vacation to California that we went again the next year, staying longer and going to San Francisco on the way south, where we did the drive down Lombard Street.

I did not know, at the time, that that family vacation was to be my last family vacation. My baby blister was born soon thereafter, which ended going on fun family vacations, at least for me.

On that last family trip to Disneyland, in addition to San Francisco, we also drove across the border, to Tijuana, we did wine tours in the Napa Valley, drove Highway 1 south, past Hearst Castle, staying at Santa Barbara State Park, where I got the worst sunburn ever, leaving a weird white spot on my back which remains to this day, I think. I've not looked lately.

Just a sec, I must go see if my Santa Barbara white spot is still there...

It's still there, about the size of a small pea, currently red due to sun exposure today.

I hope Spencer Jack tours Chinatown before he leaves San Francisco. I've had myself a mighty fine time or two in Chinatown. One time all of us in my traveling group got ourselves Mao jackets and caps in Chinatown. This made us look like revolutionary communists. I recollect us all later wearing our Mao outfits to the Duffy's Disco in Mount Vernon. The gatekeeper hesitated in admitting us, and then I guess he decided we added an interesting visual element and let us enter.

You ain't seen disco dancing til you see a Gang of Four doing the Hustle in full Mao regalia....

Spencer Jack Has Me Wondering Why It Will Take Fort Worth Longer To Build 3 Puny Bridges Over Nothing Than It Took To Build The Golden Gate Bridge

This morning's email from Spencer Jack's dad confirming that he and Spencer Jack are currently in San Francisco had me motivated to blog about something I'd long intended to blog about regarding the Golden Gate Bridge.

This morning I found a Golden Gate Bridge image I intended to use for illustrative purposes and then, just as I was heading into Blogging World, fresh incoming email from Spencer Jack's dad included three pictures of the Golden Gate Bridge, two of which I include here.

From this point on I will now verbalize what I was originally going to say.....

No.

That is not an artist's rendering of tourists crossing one of Fort Worth's supposedly under construction, non-signature, non-iconic bridges you are looking at.

What you are looking at is Spencer Jack on some sort of tourist contraption heading to Marin County via San Francisco's Golden Gate Bridge.

The Golden Gate Bridge is an actual signature bridge. An actual iconic structure recognized world-wide.

The Trinity River Panther Island Vision Boondoggle's three bridges over nothing are promoted by that corrupt agency as being "signature" bridges, which will become "iconic" images of Fort Worth.

Do Fort Worth's propaganda purveyors not actually know what is meant by the word "iconic"?

Fort Worth's three non-signature, never gonna be iconic bridges over nothing are being built over nothing because this is supposedly easier than building over something, such as the un-needed flood diversion channel that some day may flow under Fort Worth's three non-signature, non-iconic bridges over nothing.

The three bridges supposedly began being constructed this month. The three bridges being built over nothing are scheduled  to be completed in four years.

Four years.

I know you are sitting there wondering how long it took to build the Golden Gate Bridge, a bridge which was not built over nothing, but was instead built over the Golden Gate Strait at the entry to San Francisco Bay.

Construction began on the Golden Gate Bridge on January 5, 1933 and was completed on April 19, 1937.

Four years later.

The Golden Gate Bridge is about 1.7 miles long, 90 feet wide, 740 feet tall, and 220 feet, on average, above the saltwater below.

Yes, unlike Fort Worth's non-signature, non-iconic three bridges, the Golden Gate Bridge was built over water, very deep water, water that moves due to this thing called tides.

So, how is it that Fort Worth's relatively puny, relatively simple bridges will take four years to build? How come I've not heard any of the locals asking why it will take so long?

I wonder if the reason it takes Fort Worth so long to build three little bridges has anything to do with how the building of these bridges is financed?

To build the Golden Gate the California Legislature authorized the Golden Gate Bridge and Highway District as the official entity charged with the design, construction and financing of the project. But then the Wall Street crash of 1929 came along, followed by the Great Depression, which created a fund raising problem.

So, what did the Golden Gate Bridge and Highway District do to get the funds to build the bridge?

Why they did something Fort Worth apparently does not know how to do.

A bond measure was placed before the voters in the counties that would benefit from the new bridge. The voters approved the bond measure in November 1930, with construction beginning less than three years later.

What a concept.

Fort Worth's Trinity River Vision Boondoggle has boondoggled along for well over a decade, un-funded, un-voted on.

How bizarre.

Why would you not have the public vote on a public works project that benefits the public by building a much needed flood control upgrade from the levees which have kept downtown Fort Worth flood-free for over a half century?

Oh, I think I just answered my question.

Anyway, below is another picture of Spencer Jack at one of the world's signature iconic bridges....