Last night I was chatting with my friend, noted photographer Allison V. Smith. (Actually, we weren’t chatting because two nights ago, my iPhone was stolen right out of my hot little hand. So we were actually e-mailing, but anyway.) She invited me to the Retail as Art event tomorrow night. What is that, you ask? Well, apparently 10 photography students from Booker T. Washington and Emmet J. Conrad submitted a total of 42 photographs “inspired by and representing retail.”Â Those images were then judged by four fine fine folks including Allison. Tomorrow night’s bash will feature the top 20 photographs, and the three winning images will also be announced. So, now I’m inviting you to drop by Design Within Reach on your way to/from happy hour. The event starts at 6 p.m. and ends at 8. Can’t make it? No worries. The exhibit runs through April 30th. But I do hope to see you tomorrow! (I’ll be the lady without the cell phone.)
DMN City Hall reporter Rudy Bush brings word this afternoon that Dallas City Councilman Steve Salazar will unveil one of the new Cesar Chavez Boulevard street signs this Friday in downtown Dallas.
It just so happens that I spoke with Salazar for a story covering the whole political kerfuffle that can be found in the April issue of our print product. Here’s an excerpt that includes Salazar’s remarks on the lonely stretch of South Central Expressway that will now pay homage to the civil rights activist:
Though the consensus on the Council is that South Central Expressway is a perfect fit because ChÃ¡vez founded the United Farm Workers union and the street is home to the city’s farmers market, Councilman Steve Salazar admits that it was the path of least resistance. “Look at the different streets that could be considered,” Salazar says. “This street has the fewest number of homes or businesses that could be impacted.”
I’m a little surprised this hasn’t popped up yet in the press. But here’s the deal: Sheldon Goldstein is facing Stephen Broden in a runoff election on April 13. The two Republicans both want to represent District 30 in the U.S. Congress. But way back in February, before the primaries, Goldstein and Broden appeared together on a radio show called Life and Liberty, which airs on KSKY (660 AM). On the show, Broden lost his cool — so much so that the Irving PD investigated the incident and have referred it to the case to the city prosecutor. Apparently, the host, a guy named Jim Middleton, had given each candidate (there’s a third candidate in the studio, a fellow named Charles Lingerfelt) a vase as a thank-you gift. Broden went so far as to raise his vase in the air, menacing Goldstein with it. The only reason I can come up with for why the Morning News hasn’t yet reported this is that the whole incident went down on a small AM station and on the weekend to boot. Anyway, you have to listen to the audio. It’s good stuff.
Soon after this story about former Dallas Maverick (and current Boston Celtic) Michael Finley straining his back lifting a suitcase started to make the rounds, a Twitter trending topic was born: #michaelfinleyisold. A few of my favorites:
@kevinwilson16 When the Alamo began, Michael Finley asked to be released so he could play for a winner.
@Aykis16 Michael Finley would like the fans to cheer at a more reasonable volume
@treykerby Michael Finley just found a drawer full of rubberbands in his night stand.
@j_d_hastings Michael Finley will respond to these outrageous insults by writing a letter to Twitter’s editor
@noahwbailey Michael Finley is relieved that Congress finally closed the Medicare prescription drug “doughnut hole.”
@j_d_hastings It’ll be a cold day in Hell before Michael Finley acknowledges New Mexico’s statehood.
And we have a preview here, a conversation with Artistic Director James Faust here, and be sure to check back daily throughout the fest to catch news, reviews, previews, and conversations with actors and filmmakers. Happy festing.
A few Saginaw High School cheerleaders are in trouble for giving fellow cheerleaders sodas with a twist: urine. I don’t miss high school at all.
As the Washington Post reports and the DMN editorializes this morning, yesterday’s speech was to an audience smaller than the Greater Dallas Chamber: it was aimed directly at Congress. Stepping gingerly outside the traditional bounds of a Fed Chairman, Bernanke let Congress know — in no uncertain terms — that fiscal sanity must be restored now.Â
A Republican strategist tells me he thinks this may put Congressional Republicans in a bind. Having passed a massive new health care bill that will not — repeat, will not — be repealed, Obama can now start challenging the GOP caucusÂ to make concrete proposals to cut the deficit. There are only three ways: cut entitlements (which will be difficult for a GOP that just tried to stop health care by hitting at its reductions in Medicare spending), cut specific programs that are popular back home in many members’ districts, or increase revenue (i.e., raise taxes). The tide of popular opinion has been going the GOP’s way. But Obama hasÂ seven months until the mid-term electionsÂ to box them in. The Republicans, with no recognized commander, haven’t been especially adept in adjusting their game plan. Their obstructionist tactics so far have failed entirely. So Bernanke’s speech yesterday can be viewed as the opening salvo in a battle in which the GOPÂ may findÂ itself on the defensive on an issue that should beÂ its cornerstone.
Martellus Bennett gives us the 13 top songs in the Cowboys locker room. Here’s what he has to say about song No. 5:
Johnny Cash, “Ring of Fire”: This is (quarterback Tony) Romo’s favorite. A lot of the black guys hate it but the white guys – even the trainers – love this stuff. Romo and Witten and a lot of the guys will sing along. It’s pretty funny; it’s like how we get into it when we hear our favorite rap song. So it’s cool. I just shake my head. It reminds me of The Beverly Hillbillies.
Back in 2008, we thought the historic Mt. Vernon estate built by H.L. Hunt was up for sale. The Morning News said as much. It was an embarrassing situation. The house was supposedly listed by Eleanor Mowery Sheets. But then she and her husband, Nicky, had that tax problem. And suddenly the house wasn’t for sale. But now it most definitely is. Check out Allie Beth Allman’s $32.5 million listing, which I believe makes it the most expensive house on the market in Dallas. In 2008, the News reported that the owners, Teresa and John Amend, were downsizing. One presumes that’s the case today. There is only a small handful of people in town who could afford this joint. It’s not really his style, but you have to wonder if Ray Hunt might be interested, if only for its historical significance. It’ll be interesting to see if it sells.
You remember Miles Moffeit. He’s the star Denver Post reporter who rankled his former bosses when he told the alt weekly up there why he was jumping ship for the Dallas Morning News. Moffeit had resigned but was finishing out his stint at the Post when the brass there read his comments about how the Post‘s parent company was on shaky financial ground but the Morning News was rock solid, which was one reason he decided to make the move. His bosses said, “Don’t worry about finishing out your time here. Just pack up your stuff and leave now. Jerk.”
Well, now comes news that A.H. Belo, parent company of the Morning News, is having to restate some of its financial results. The newspaper side of the operation goofed when it figured how much it was on the hook for pension obligations. As the News reported, “A.H. Belo will reverse $3.1 million of pension plan liability recorded in February 2008; $14 million in pension expense and additional liability recorded Dec. 31, 2008, and a related tax effect; and a pension plan deferred tax asset and related tax effect recorded March 31, 2009.” Bottom line: A.H. Belo’s pension plan, as of December, was underfunded by $118 million.
Are those giggles I hear coming from Denver?
Yesterday, we talked about two local drug lords who got busted and admitted they were part of La Familia, the Mexican cartel. I thought it was a good premise for a TV show in the vein of, oh, Dexter. The two drug lords, whose real nicknames are Rica and Chato, are anti-heroes. They sell drugs, but they’re good fathers and husbands, just trying to make ends meet. Maybe it’s more The Sopranos meets The George Lopez Show. With that established, I asked Zac to come up with the first episode of the show. He gave it to us in the comments, but I figured it belonged on the top shelf. In case you missed it:
Rica and Chato are disciplining Jesus, a captain in their La Familia drug ring they suspect of skimming money off a few recent deals. Rica is interrupted by a phone call. It sounds urgent. He immediately leaves … to attend his son’s birthday party at Chuck E. Cheese.
Smash cut. Main credits. AWESOME theme song.
Fade back in. Car chase. For no reason. It lasts until the next commercial break.
And we’re back. Now we’re in airplanes. Nothing but sweet, unprovoked and unexplained tag-team action, and Spanish-accented one-liners. There is also a fistfight on the plane that leads to skydiving.
We’re back with Jesus. Rica has learned something about disciplining his drug gang from disciplining young Rica Jr. at the pizza party. He lets Jesus live, grounding him for two weeks. But…
When Rica’s back is turned, Jesus aims a gun at the back of his head. (He had it hidden or something, or it was lying around – whatever, just go with it.) Gunshot. Rica turns around. Chato is holding a smoking pistol. Jesus is on the floor, dead.
They high-five. Freeze frame.
End credits. Reprise AWESOME theme song.
I love the types, like Rep. Michelle Bachman, who are worried that that the census is an act of government intrusion. The same types claim to be strict constitutionalists. But, whaddaya know, the census is required by Article I, Section 2 of the Constitution. So let’s forget the nut cases, and get down to the serious business of counting who’s in and who’s out.
Thanks to this handy map from the Texas Tribune, we can now see who is lagging in turning in those all-important, this-is-how-the-money-is-apportioned census forms. Tiny Rockwall County leads at 63%, solid Republican Collin CountyÂ follows with 60 percent, almost-as-solid Republican Tarrant and Denton are tied at 57%, and Dallas — lazy, lazy Democratic-leaningÂ Dallas County — is at 52%Â (but still ahead of Harris County, which has only hit 50%).
So, in spite of the right-wing kerfuffle, are Republicans the good citizens here ? Apparently so.
1. After being chased by police after allegedly shoplifting, a woman wrecked her car by hitting a pole and a wall. Then she tried to run away. Police captured her and then realized that in her car was a 4-year-old and a 5-month-old infant. And, here’s the biggest surprise of all, although the kids were in car seats, the car seats were not strapped in the vehicle. I know. I’m shocked, too.
2. Technology strikes again. The iPhone was used in the trial of Alandus Weaver, the dad who’s accused of dumping his baby’s body in Lake Lewisville. Weaver didn’t know the iPhone was recording his conversation with detectives, but he maintained his innocence throughout (I would, too, if I were being investigated by detectives). It’ll be interesting to see how this case plays out. Oh, and speaking of technology. Tim, how’s that iPad working out for you?
3. This article about members of a Frisco church trying to break a Guinness record by eating 2 tons of nachos made me laugh. There are two little gold nugget quotes in the story. The first is by the Frisco assistant pastor, who has been dreaming of breaking this record for quite some time. “We want to show that you don’t have to be stiff and starchy to love God,” he says. Aren’t nachos both stiff and starchy? Irony. The other quote is from the current Guinness world record holder for consuming nachos. “It’s a neat little feather in your cap,” he says, “but it’s not brain surgery.” No, sir. No, it’s not.