>Texas Tidbits: A Rose By Any Other Name….

Leave a comment

>

If I were a ramblin’ gamblin’ man, and I’ve been known to do a little of both, I’d lay down good money that the most popular flower in the United States is the rose. As the title of this post suggest, the rose could have been named the “sweaty gym socks flower” and it would still smell like something that The Almighty adorns Paradise with. Ahhhhhh…the rose, a symbol of love and devotion, a symbol of rememberance and just a great addition to any flower garden. Which brings us to the Rose Capital of the World, Tyler, TexasA brief history : Tyler is situated in an ideal location for growing all kinds of smellin’-good, tasty and/or ornamental plants as the climate is pretty moderate with rainfall occurring throughout the year. For these reasons, succulent peaches were once to Tyler and Smith County what the elegant rose is today, but in the early 20th Century the blight decimated the peach crop in the area. Enter La Rosa. At this time, roses were already popular in East Texas, so it was a natural fit for it to fill a major void in agricultural production and revenue for Tyler.  A little north of South Loop 323 at the Glenwood (I think) intersection, lies one of the most magnificent floral displays on Earth – The Tyler Minicipal Rose Garden . The Rose Garden is fourteen acres of horticultural heaven featuring about five hundred varieties of the rose, with some of the antique rose varieties dating back to 1867! Since opening in 1952, the Rose Garden has been ooooo’ed and ahhhhh’ed over by millions of people from around the world. A predecessor to the Rose Garden is the Texas Rose Festival, held in mid- October, is now entering its ninth decade as a showcase for the flower that has made Tyler, Texas The Rose Capital of the World. A rose by any other name……   

>Texas Tidbits; Three Lakes in One!

Leave a comment

>


If I were to tell you the following facts about a body of water, what would you think it was? Facts: 181,600 surface acres of water; over 1200 miles of shoreline; 65 miles long; holds over 1 trillion gallons of water. One of the Great Lakes. Nope? The Great Salt Lake? Negatory. How about Toledo Bend Reservoir in East Texas? That’s the place.

 Toledo Bend is so large that is unofficially categorized as three lakes – Upper Lake, Mid Lake and the Lower Lake. Now that’s BIG. My Dad was from Troup, Texas (near Tyler), so we always got the latest news in East Texas  from family. That’s how we learned of Toledo Bend being built in ’60s. From the family grapevine in East Texas. I remember it very well. TB is one of the best fishin’lakes in the country, regularly yielding huge Largemouth bass, stripers and catfish, as well as crappie and panfish.

Toledo Bend is a landlocked ocean, it seems. It’s a beautiful place to spend time with friends and family. While you’re there, be sure to round up about 20 lbs of mudbags, some small red taters and corn on the cob and have a Cajun Style Crawdad Boil. Oh…..and don’t forget the cold beer.

>Texas Tidbits: The Mammoths of Waco

Leave a comment

>

Waco, a city of 121,000 fine folks, is located on the Brazos River about 100 miles south of Fort Worth on I-35. It’s home to the oldest institution of higher learning in the State of Texas – Baylor University. Waco is also the home to one of the country’s most popular soft drinks. Dr Pepper was invented by Charles Alderton at Morrison’s Old Corner Drug Store in Waco in the 1880’s. Another soft drink, Big Red, also calls Waco home.  Sadly, Waco is probably best-remembered by many young people as the location of the Branch Davidian tragedy in the 1990’s.

I was somewhat surprised as I was looking for info on Waco this morning when I came across this story about a mammoth discovery on the Bosque River. I was already familiar with the dinosaur tracks near Glen Rose, but this was new to me. As someone who finds things like the discovery of the 10,000 year old remains of a 40,000 pound behemoth interesting, this finding has given me a real good reason to visit the Waco area again. If you’d like to see much more of the Colombian Mammoths of Waco, contact The Waco Mammoth Site so you can plan your trip back in time to prehistoric Texas.

       

     

>Texas Tidbits: Another Look at the Concho City of San Angelo

Leave a comment

>

San Angelo

I posted this on August 11, 2010. It lead to the start of a great friendship with my good buddy, Bob Zeller. I think it’s worth a second look.

If you read more than one post on this blog, then you know that I am a trees and water kind of guy, like in East Texas. For some unknown reason, however, the rugged beauty of the desert has a bit of a mysterious hold on me. I can’t explain it, other than to say it’s a sort of sagebrush voodoo or something. Segue to San Angelo. San Angelo is one of those places where it’s not quite desert and  it’s not in the Piney Woods or Big Thicket, I could live there and be happy. It doesn’t exactly hurt my feelings that there is a state park and O C Fischer Lake lies within the park and snuggles up right next to the San Angelo city limits. The city got its humble beginnings when after the Civil War, Fort Concho was established as an outpost to protect the flood of settlers heading west to find their fortunes. At one time Fort Concho was home to the Black Cavalry, which the local Native Americans called the “Buffalo Soldiers”, earning great respect from the white soldiers they served with and, of course, the Indians. In those days, San Angelo was a trading center for settlers in the area, but as sanangelo.org states “The discovery of oil and gas, the influx of light manufacturing, the initial development of a communications center, the establishment and growth of Angelo State University, and the growth of the medical community provided diversification to a growing community. Today, this city of 90,000 is the trade and services hub of a 13 county area, supported by agriculture, manufacturing, education, business and health services, military, tourism, and retirement.” Geographically, San Angelo is almost the bull’s eye on the dartboard that is Texas and it ain’t far from being a bull’s eye on the dart board of places to live.

>Texas Tidbits: Lake Texoma

Leave a comment

>


Lake Texoma. 89,000 acres of some of the best fishin’ anywhere. If you’re on the lookout for largemouth, white, striped or smallmouth bass, there are some real wall-hangers awaiting you at Texoma. Let’s not forget crappie, catfish and the 70 other species of fish that inhabit these waters. Allow me to put you some knowledge with the water body records for the Big T. Fish fry, anyone? At laketexoma.com, we find this: “The lake area includes two wildlife refuges, two state parks, fifty four U.S. Army Corps of Engineers-managed parks, twenty-six resorts, hundreds of campgrounds and a variety of excellent golf courses”. What the hell am I doing in Maine? (just kiddin’, honey…..kinda) If you’ve got a boat, a secluded fishin’/camping trip is as close as one of the many islands located throughout the lake. The fishing license regulations at Lake Texoma are a little goofy, but as Wikipedia tells us ” Historically, Texas and Oklahoma have not had a reciprocal fishing license agreement, which has posed a problem for anglers. Recent boundary resolutions have given Oklahoma jurisdiction over most of the fishing in Lake Texoma. An Oklahoma fishing license allows fishing most of the lake, up to within 400 yards (370 m) of Denison Dam. To fish the entire lake, a Lake Texoma fishing license is also available.” Be sure to check with Texas or Oklahoma wildlife officers to get the right info for you. As at any major lake in Texas, the weekends at Texoma are, shall we say, busy? Although with 89,000 acres of fishin’ available, you could probably find some place to hang out without too much of a crowd.

>A Letter to Dad – October 6, 1938 – June 5, 2004 UPDATED (scroll down)

Leave a comment

>

Dad, Debbie, Adam & Sara – 1995

Dear Dad….it’s hard to believe that it’s already been seven years since you’ve “gone Home”. It seems like it was just yesterday that we were hanging out at Dale’s Company BBQ. All those people there and it was just you and me talking father to son. While you are no longer here to lend your wisdom to me in person, I hear you speaking to me in my heart all the time. The advice is much needed and much welcomed.

Although I am now 54 years old, I understand that I am always gonna be the 8lb 12 oz bundle of “goofball” that you were so proud of in 1956. And, Dad, I am still proud of you and honored to be your son. I didn’t tell you this enough when you were alive, but you were a good Dad and a good man.

I miss the Sunday drives we used to take to where ever the wind took us…places like Tintop, Lake Benbrook, Lake Worth or to the Fort Worth Zoo to catch catfish or slide down that big ass hill on a piece of cardboard. I miss watching you work on the cars and have them running like new in just a little while. I also enjoyed the stories you’d tell me when I was a kid about where your run was for this time. Dad, after you being on the road for over 40 years, those stories are fresh in my mind today and I’ve tried to make those same runs over the years and I’ve done pretty damn good at it, too.

I guess I’d better close for now, Dad, but before I go, do you remember when you, Grandpa and I used to go trolling for anything that would hit a yellow and black HellBender? Those are times seared in my memory, never-to-be forgotten. Good times. Dads and sons times. Best of times.

I miss you, Dad. And I love you. Adios til next time.

UPDATE: My Dad loved old cars. When I went outside a while ago there was a Frakkin’ Cherry ’65 Chevy Pick  Up in the parking lot. It just happened to be there. Dad, I know you liked seeing that.I did, too. 🙂

>Re-visiting a Nightmare

Leave a comment

>

I chose to repost this particular article because the Time of Doom draws nigh once again. The Annual Visit With My Mother-in-Law. I have to get myself mentally prepared for this “event”. This story recounts an old visit with the battle Axe and I’ll have a new episode when the next visit is unavoidable gets closer to reality.

A couple of days ago I wrote about impending doom a much overdue visit from my Mother-in-Law. As it turns out, there is a God!!!!, she had to postpone her trip by the Grace of The Almighty  due to car trouble. This turn of events caused  me to do cartwheels my wife great sadness and despair. I thought I was safe from all that is evil and wrong with the world. I.Was.Wrong. My weekend of sloth and gluttony has turned into The Weekend From Hell. I know you married guys are wondering, “How could a nice weekend of sloth and gluttony turn into a weekend from hell, when your Mother-in-Law is 200 miles away having car trouble and can’t come to torture and degrade you visit?” Let me ‘splain. Although I’m happier than a stoned fat kid at a McDonald’s all you can eat buffet saddened my M-I-L can’t make it, a fate worse than paying alimony to an ex-wife that married a plastic surgeon has befallen me. I.Have.To.Go.Back.To.School.Shopping.! But wait! There’s more! I am (or should be) committed… to attend a baby shower! Don’t get me wrong, as a father of four (ages 3-31, God help me), I love kids, I really do (especially with a little salt and mustard….rimshot). But, less than a month before my 54th birthday, I thought my days of going to baby showers were over! At least until my own daughters had babies. But my wife threatened me with unspeakable acts of violence asked me nicely to go, so I said OK. Upon further review, I never thought I’d miss my Mother-in-Law, but I do. Go figure. Anyway…posting will be sporadic, at best, today for the previously mentioned reasons. Rummage through the archives because there’s lots mof stuff in there and I’m sure you’ll find something that’ll make you say to yourself, “That’s 10 minutes of my life I’ll never get back”. But it’s Friday, what a better way to kill time at work than to read some worthless drivel potential Pulitzer Prize-winning social commentary? Here are a few of my popular posts from the recent past:

Older Entries Newer Entries

%d bloggers like this: