Friday, June 23, 2006

Illegal Immigrants, part III

Well it has started, the thing I was very concerned about on the illegal Canadian geese situation. For the past week this irrevent group of renegades have been demonstrating across the street from our home. They have had the gall to squat on the open lot across the street eating, honking, releiving themselves and holding up signs saying, "we want more and we will not learn your language." They are insisting that the national anthem be played in Canadian French, that all answering machines have an option for Canadian French on button two, that their language be spoken and taught in the public school systems, and they want more benefits. Especially dear to them is being able to squat on the lake and paddle around at their leisure when they want to. They are demanding that no boat traffic of any kind be on the lake and that all residents along the lake line not hold parties or have any fun that would possibly disturb them. They apparently have decided they have a pretty good deal here and they aren't going anywhere. But, why should they? They do have a pretty good deal here, the food is great, the atmosphere is great, they don't really have to do anything they don't want to and they have a 20 hour work week. So, I think they can put down their signs and just enjoy themselves and I think Buffman & Squeaky and I will tell them this when we go for a run.

The more I read of Kinky Friedman the more I like this guy. He is on the ballot to run for Texas Governor and probably will get some votes. Gems from his book Cowboy Logic, "The only two good bals I ever hit was when I stepped on the garden rake." or "Leap sideways, before your karma runs over your dogma." or "My father once said, a man can be judged by the size of his enemies." or "---k'em if they can't take a joke."

Now to more serious stuff with the Buffalo Springs Lake 70.3 triathlon this coming weekend. Typically we have had no rain to speak of in about a year, so now this week we are getting guess what, yep rain. Of course we do need it and we now know that God answers prayers because every Sunday and Wednesday night the Baptists have been praying for rain and now we have it. But, the good news is that it will be great for the cotton crops and it will cool things off a bit. With temps of 92 hi and 64 low predicted on race day it will make for great racing weather. The competitive field this year is great in both the age group and pro field, both male and female. We expect record crowds and a very competitive race. The elusive sub 4 hours time for the pros is a possibility, unless that alway diverse triathlon course sneaks up on them. You can watch all of it on with the inovative race day coverage now offered by a few races across the country.

One last serious idea, I received word that my petition to the be placed on the USAT National Board elecion was accepted and I will be on the ballot. Please vote for me if you are in the SouthMidwest USAT region.

Have a good day, and stay cool!!


Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Immigrants are now across the street!

In my last post I mentioned the case of the Canadian geese immigrants and questioned what their citizenship situation really is. Well I have been watching that group as they congregate across the street on the beautifully landscaped grass and plants. There is something in that grass that really tastes good, since they have a little afternoon get together and really go to town. I wonder if this is their happy hour with the family and it is a way to unwind from the stresses of the day. Of course I don't really know what their stress is since they really have it made. After munching on the grass they will then go single file into the lake and then swim around for a while in a single line. Of course the parents start first, then the kids. Really something to watch and I am trying to learn something from them, but I don't know what that is right now. I do know they are well behaved and they haven't demanded social security, health care, monthly stipends, automatic citizenship, and they don't seem to be a threat to our safety or increase in the crime wave most of the country is experiencing. Ransom Canyon is considered quite tranquil, since the last traffic ticket they issued was in 1992. Either we are real obedient drivers or the police(two of them) are a sleep at the switch.

One of my many pet peeves is the term "convenient store." The original convenient store use to be the local 7/11, we use to sing the "Oh Thank Heaven for 7/11" jingle all the time and on Sunday nights I use to take my four loving children to the 7/11 for some little treats. They called the treat "items," so the big deal was to determine how many items they would get. This was always determined by how much money I had in my pocket or if they had acted up. We never went to the 7/11 to reward or punish them, we just did this to have some form of fun tradition. Funny thing is my son is 44 years old and a US Diplomat stationed in Germany and within the past few days we talked about our Sunday night visits to the 7/11 and how many items they usually got, etc., so guess this was an unforgettable tradition. But, back to my thought here(sorry I got off on a senior moment rambling thing)of convenient stores are no longer convenient. My reasoning is based on the idea that I can go in to buy a pack of gum because it is a simple item, easy to get to, easy to pay for and easy to buy and run. But, now that is not the case since I must stand in a line while the person ahead of me either buys a money order, buys extensive selections of lotto tickets, claims their prize money on lotto tickets, writes a simple paper check(why not use the plastic version of the paper check called a "debit" card, slide that baby through and then get the hell out of there). Sometimes I have to wait so long I figure my next social security check will land in the bank before I can pay for my gum. The funny thing is the sales clerks behind the counter don't really care and they bask in the power of control they have over me paying for my gum. Then after waiting all this time the clerk tries to ring up my $1.09 pack of gum and the sophisticated register does not take the bar code, so now this is going to take some thinking to check me out. Finally after what seems to be hours(really minutes) I am outta there, chewing my new sugarless gum and feeling a refreshed breath. See what I mean about convenient stores are not convenient anymore. I would write someone in Wasington to complain and even create a new National Association for Those Who Wait in Line In a Convenient Store to Pay and Have to Wait too Long(Acronym---NATCPAY--or PISSEDOFF.

Now for some serious stuff from Kinky Friedman, maybe our next Governor, but not likely: "I'll fight wussification if I've got to do it one wuss at a time." or "Im for the lettle fellers--not the Rockefellers." or Jesse Venntura just didn't realize that wrestling is real and politics is fixed." or "I believe musicians can run this state better than politicians. We just won't get a lot done in the mornings." or 'In Texas, the men are men and the emus are nervous." or "Always respect your superiors, if you have any." Kinky also claims he was born in a manger, died in the saddle, and came back as a horny toad." Got to love it!!

Well the annual Buffalo Springs Lake 70.3 half ironman and Tri Raider are building up steam for this coming weekend. Natascha Badmann, 6 Time World Ironman Champion, is here to do battle with the other aspiring triathletes in the Yellowhouse Canyons. It will be a busy weekend and some fierce competition will prevail. More on Natascha in my next post.

Off to do some race directing,


Friday, June 02, 2006

Illegal Immigrants, yes or no?

Recently I heard the term, "media fast," for the first time. While it didn't really sink in at first after giving it some thought I think it makes good sense. The term refers to taking some time off away from the negative sides of the news media, with the purpose being to stay positive and eliminate the negative. For me to do this is very hard since I like to read the news in paper print and on the internet. While I do not watch the news on television, unless something for 9/11 happens, I still see the total negative side of the news. Just this morning I noticed the subject of "illegal immigration" took up two pages in the Lubbock Avalanche Journal. Just to note some of the subject matter I found that Texas Governor Ralph Perry is spending $20 million to strengthen up the border between Texas and Mexico. He says he will not wait for the Federal government to send money for this, even though the state eligible for it, and is putting up surveillance cameras along the border, for remote area observation. Get this, you are sitting somewhere along the border looking into the surveillance screen and see an "illegal immigrant" crossing the border. Now what? Well according to this article you will then call an 800 number and report what is happening. Now, imagine this, you dial the 800 number and this is what will probably happen: first, you are given the opportunity to have the menu stated in English or yep, you guessed it, Spanish, second, you are given up to 10 options, of which none are actually live voices but some kind of computer voice, third, even though you have 10 options none of them really apply to the situation,fourth, when you press for the operator you are automatically referred back to the main menu, with of course to have it in English or Spanish. Question, what if your long lost cousin from Germany is visiting and only speaks German(kind of common among folks from foreign countries to speak THEIR language), then what does he or she do? Good question but I really do not have an answer for that now. Guess they just hand it to someone who either speaks English or Spanish. Then I noticed that the Terminator(Governor Schwarzenegger), the last Governor holdout on sending troops to the California/Mexico border, has decided to send troops to assist the Border Patrol in their job. Last but not least President Bush, as we all know from the May 15 Oval White House news conference, is still wanting to send 6,000 National Guard troops to assist the Border Patrol in doing their jobs. Supposing not a military action; however, do you really think they will not be taking their guns and ammo? To think they will be sent there to help fill out paper work and send flowers each morning to the captured illegal immigrants is like saying the war in Iraq is over, "Mission Accomplished," etc. Now I see what we should take a "media fast" for a while!

Now that I have your juices flowing for the immigration issue I have my own "illegal/legal immigration" story. We live on the little pond called, Ransom Canyon Lake. By West Texas standards it is a very small lake, but by Minnesota standards it is a very small pond. At any rate it has enough size to attract thousands of Canadian geese each winter,the total migration has been estimated at 60,000 total. Well many of these beautiful birds rest their feathered butts on our little lake each winter, graze in the grain fields each day, spend the winter, then fly back to the north country for the summer. We actually enjoy them and do not consider them intruders at all, but simply visitors for the winter. This time of year they are all gone home, with a few exceptions, and you are not likely to see any of them on the lake. But, one day I was heading out on a bike ride and I saw something I had not seen before, baby Canadian geese. There was at least 10 of them walking(barely) behind their parents(guessing there was a male/female combination in the adults they were following) and having a good time with life. Well since my mind works in mysterious ways I got to thinking, are these dudes legal or illegal? What does the law say about Canadian geese being hatched in our state(why does everybody pick on Texas to immigrate to?)and then staying here. Even though it was obvious they couldn't fly yet, does that mean they need a green card or what? Now, over the days I have seen them walking around the community with more strength and confidence I suspect they will be flying soon. So, do we have the National Guard or Border Patrol or the Ransom Canyon Police( all two of them, with two bullets in their breast pockets)arrest these scoundrels and have them deported to their Northern home or since they were hatched in our state does that make them legal and not illegal or what. Well stay tuned for the answer, as a concerned citizen I will find the answer. In the meantime I have enjoyed watching them grow and prosper, just don't want them to grow up not knowing where their legal citizenship is.

Movies: Poseidon--special affects great, rest of movie stinks, dialogue and acting basically terrible, some of the stupidest dialogue I have ever heard in a disaster movie. Well described as a disaster itself. Not even good popcorn made this one tolerable. RV-very funny, again Robin Williams made it, X-Men-well done, great special affects, would love to have their power for swimming, biking and running. If you are into the X-Men cult you will love it. The Da Vinci Code-well done, followed the book very closely, not as deep as the book, but good. Still don't get what all the churches were in such a dither about. It is just a movie about the "fiction" Da Vinci Code book story. They don't seem to be bothered by the fact the Bible has been written and re-written so many times that there has to be inconsistency in the "so-called" written word of God(whew, way too serious this morning). If you can't believe with lots of faith, it just will not work(my opinion of course).

Off to the Milkman Triathlon in big ole Dexter, NM,