Catching up with the kids
Don't get me wrong, I love the rain -- it could rain everyday through the end of August and I wouldn't complain, as long as it keeps the temperatures down. But it has been cutting into some of my bike riding time, and it has prevented the kids from getting out of the house as much as they probably should. One evening last week, they broke out and ran wild in the front yard during a downpour...
Another day of liquid sunshine...
The rain hasn't kept me from shifting my bicycling into high gear... I racked up 453 miles for the month of May -- my highest recorded total ever for a single month. I did get caught in a heavy downpour during a ride last Sunday... had to ride through heavy rain with no available shelter (fortunately there was no lightning) for about four miles before it let up and by then I was completely soaked! But I've been having some good rides, and am hoping to increase my weekly mileage to as much as 150... I'll need the stamina if I'm going to ride the Century at the Hotter'n Hell Hundred in August...
Seen during a bike ride near Haslet, TX. May 31, 2007.
I could really give a flying turd whether Michael Vick is sanctioning dog fights, Britney Spears is in rehab, Paris Hilton is in the hoosegow, or Lindsay Lohan is passed out drunk in her car. I'm only interested in what Michael Vick is doing on the football field, and as for the others... well, I'm not interested in much of what they do at all.
And it's not just the roads and highways... you should have seen the line at the post office the last time I went to buy stamps. This was at the large, Jack D. Watson post office intended to serve all of north Fort Worth. I was there between 11 am and noon on a Friday morning and they had ONE WINDOW open. The line of customers stretched nearly all the way out of the building. And the only self-service stamp machine that accepted credit cards was out of order.
Want more? Our kids attend crowded schools... the school districts literally can't build them fast enough to keep up with the growing population. Wal-Mart is always packed with customers, and there are never enough checkout lanes open. Every summer, we are told to ration our water for lawn use... even when the lake levels are up, the water infrastructure can't meet the demand, and the water mains start to break. The air quality is terrible and gets worse every summer.
It's a simple fact that our quality of life here in north Texas is declining. And it's due in large part to the failure of our elected officials to plan and properly prepare for the increasing population. I think I can tough it out until the kids are out of school, and I might even finish my career with the railroad here. But I have no intention of sticking around here for the long haul. As soon as my obligations to my kids and my employer have been met, I'm GONE, baby!
In the meantime, here's a proposal -- everyone who has relocated to the D-FW "Metro-mess" during the past 6 years has to leave. We'll handle it on a "last in, first out" basis. If you just moved here, beat it... call up Atlas or Mayflower and tell 'em to take you and your stuff back where it came from. For my friends who are recent arrivals... sorry, dudes... it's not that we don't want you here... north Texas just isn't ready for you yet. Here's the deal -- as soon as our local and state governments have installed the infrastructure to accomodate you (roads, transit, water lines, amenities) without inconveniencing the rest of us, you can come back. If nothing else, I'll sell you my house when I leave.