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Did Bass Pro Shops Steal a T-shirt Idea From The Lodge?

Michael Precker, the writer-in-residence (and manager) at The Lodge, sent me the two images you see here. One is a t-shirt that Bass Pro Shops sells. The other is a t-shirt The Lodge, one of our city’s most well-known gentleman’s clubs, has been selling for four or five years. Precker says his boss, Dawn Rizos, the generous owner of The Lodge, came up with the original concept and a bartender named Bryan drew it.

I called and emailed the media relations people at the Bass Pro Shops headquarters, in Springfield, Missouri, to ask when they started selling their version of the shirt. So far I haven’t heard back. The company website says it’s “new.” Here’s the description:

Is your wife or girlfriend nagging you again about your “honey do” list? We can help. Pick up our Bass Pro Shops® Problem Solved Fishing T-Shirt. This short-sleeve funny T-shirt sports front screen-printed graphics with a 2-panel story. In the first, a woman yells and shakes her finger at her man. In the second, the man sits in his boat, fishing and smiling. Problem solved!

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Leading Off (7/1/15)

John Wiley Price’s Co-defendant Will Plead Guilty. Christian Lloyd Campbell filed court papers saying he will plead guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit bribery, and he could testify against Price. In exchange, Campbell is looking at a recommended sentence of no more than three years in prison.

Another Controversial Video Involving the McKinney Police. Stop me if this sounds familiar: There’s a video of a police officer in McKinney drawing his gun and yelling at unarmed young black men. Some people think the officer was abusive, while other people (including his fellow officers) think he did a fine job.

Grapevine Volleyball Coach Charged With Drugging and Sexually Assaulting Teens. Damian Merrick owns the Grapevine Volleyball Club. He’s accused of giving teenage girls marijuana and assaults in a parking lot and a hotel room. It looks like Merrick has already been scrubbed from the club’s website.

Gay People Will Soon Be Able to Get Married in Granbury. Wonderful detail alert: The Hood County clerk who posted a statement explaining why she wouldn’t be issuing same-sex marriage certificates — and then another statement, later, explaining that yes, her office will actually issue them soon, even though she doesn’t like it — is named Katie Lang.

Rangers Activate Josh Hamilton. He joined the team in Baltimore for the first time since being sidelined with a strained hamstring and had two hits in last night’s win. The Rangers sent rookie sensation-turned-mortal Joey Gallo down to the minors, where he will likely distinguish himself like an eagle in a league of pelicans.

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Leading Off (6/24/15)

Police Call Missing Hurst Woman’s Disappearance “Suspicious.” Norma Shultz, 72, went missing on May 19. Her husband reported her absence to the police nearly a week later. Shultz’s daughter says her stepfather hasn’t been able to answer any of her questions. Police say they haven’t received any tips.

Lots of Thoughts of the Resignation of Mike Miles. A few places have timelines of the three years Miles has been in charge of DISD. Here’s an editorial lauding his accomplishments. And also, in the same publication, Steve Blow saying Miles was never a good fit in the first place.

Local News Outlet Finds Local Store Selling Confederate Flags. Even after Walmart and Amazon announced that they will stop selling Confederate merchandise, and Sears announced both that it still exists and that it will stop selling Confederate stuff, WFAA found a Dallas store that is still selling the Confederate flag. The place that has the nerve to sell this incredibly controversial flag is — get this — a flag store.

Rain Brings Out Alligators and Snakes. There are also more nutria and turtles. Deer too, apparently. Most of the sightings have been in Lewisville or in Tarrant County.

Mavericks Might Trade Monta Ellis. The incredibly dynamic shooting guard is owed $8.7 million for the one year remaining on his contract. It’s also possible that Ellis will opt out and test the free market. The Mavs have made it clear they have big plans for the off-season.

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Jordan Spieth Is Going To Bankrupt the Morning News

There was an interesting story on Poynter last week about how the Morning News covers golf. Faced with a shrinking travel budget, the paper didn’t send golf writer Bill Nichols to the Masters. Well, we know what happened there. Jordan Spieth happened. So the paper sucked it up and sent Nichols to cover the U.S. Open. The Poynter story posed an interesting question:

Will the Morning News staff the British Open at St. Andrews if Spieth wins the U.S. Open? The answer should be yes given the hype for him going into that tournament. However, the expense of sending a reporter for a week in Scotland could make the U.S. Open trip seem like small change.

I can confirm that the paper will send Nichols to the British Open. My source? Our own Nancy Nichols, who happens to be one of Bill’s sisters and who is right now teaching Bill how to get his passport expedited.

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Leading Off (6/19/15)

Lake Grapevine Flooding May Force Evacuations. Leaders in Grapevine, Flower Mound, and Coppell have warned some residents they may need to leave their homes as the overflowing lake is expected to crest at more than 563 feet tonight. Part of FM 2499 was shut down yesterday as water had spilled over into Denton Creek, which rose to cover portions of the road near Grapevine Mills Mall.

TCU Advances in College World Series. The Horned Frogs topped LSU for the second time, by a score of 8-4, on Thursday. But they’ll have to beat defending champ Vanderbilt — a team they lost to earlier in the double-elimination tournament — twice to advance to the best-of-3 finals. They play tonight at 7 p.m. in Omaha.

Lake Dallas Ousts Muckraking Councilwoman. Some shady goings-on in the small town north of Lewisville Lake this week. Julie Matthews had won election to the Lake Dallas City Council with 69 percent of the vote and only took her seat on June 11. Previously she’d operated a Facebook page on which she’d posted documents about Mayor Anthony Marino’s firing from Lewisville ISD for having been involved in the harassment of a gay student, images of him using city dumpsters to get rid of his own commercial waste, and a video of him drunkenly wielding a weapon at a banquet. Matthews had also complained that Nick Ristagno is in violation of state law by serving as both the city manager and police chief. So, based on what sounds like transparently thin charges, Marino and the three other members of the council voted to remove Matthews from her position.

Tennell Atkins Guilty of Assault. The soon-to-be former Dallas city councilman must pay a $166 fine for what he did to a city employee who wouldn’t let him into City Hall through a secured door last December.

Former UNT-Dallas President Owes Child Support. John Ellis Price quit as the head of the school in summer 2013 after reports of inappropriate relationships with employees. But he had still been teaching accounting classes at the school — at a salary of $191,000 a year — since then. On Thursday he resigned from that post as well, following news of a lawsuit against him by a 33-year-old former UNT student. Price is 63 and the father of a son the woman gave birth to in 2008.

Don’t Go to Oklahoma City. Maybe good advice at any time <rimshot>, but especially today as a 4-mile stretch of northbound Interstate 35 between Ardmore and Davis in Oklahoma has been shut down while officials try to figure out what to do about boulders that collapsed off a hillside onto the highway following the heavy rains of Tropical Storm Bill.

Rangers Lose on Balk-Off. Is the balk the lamest rule in sports? Discuss.

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Joey Gallo Makes Clayton Kershaw Lose It

Zac mentioned this in “Leading Off,” but he’s not really into baseball so he undersold it. I’m greatly interested in baseball — though not a rabid Rangers fan — and so I recognized that last night’s incident in Los Angeles deserves a deeper dive.

Watch the video above to see rookie Joey Gallo crush a ball off Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw — a Highland Park High School graduate and the current title holder of Greatest Pitcher Alive. The Cy Young winner is having a subpar season measured by his own high standards, but still — look how far that ball goes. Dodger Stadium is known as a ballpark that favors the guy on the mound.

The best part for Rangers fans is that Gallo’s blast caused Kershaw to do this in the dugout:

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Ask John Neely Bryan: How Exciting Is the Texas Rangers’ Joey Gallo?

Question: How excited should I be about Joey Gallo? — Tim R.

When the histories of this period are written — and I have it on the highest possible authority that the Dallas Citizens Council has already composed a rip-roaring page-turner of a first draft — you may come to regret the enthusiasm with which you’ve greeted the arrival of the newest slugger for the Texas Rangers Bases Ball Club.

Through the first six games of his major-league career (which began last week), Joseph Nicholas Gallo has tallied 2 home runs and 5 RBI, posted a .583 slugging percentage and a .370 on-base percentage, good for an OPS+ of 164. I hope I don’t have to tell you what an impressive spectacle of manhood this makes. Seriously, I hope I don’t have to tell you because I have never been much of a bases ball fancier. Leisure time is better spent in observation of the sport of kings: water polo.

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Leading Off (6/1/15)

Lake Lewisville Goes Over 100 Year Flood Mark. The lake is now 537 feet deep above sea level, and despite the sun yesterday, waters continue to rise. The state should be getting some federal storm aid soon, but that’s complicated.

DISD Dismisses 85 Employees. This is an awkwardly self-promotional story from WFAA, but the bottom line seems to be: 85 district employees were let go because of a $10 million budget mistake I don’t completely understand.

Allen ISD’s Stadium Will Reopen for Graduation. You’ll recall that, a few years ago, the district spent $60 million to build a nice new football stadium. (Tim forced me to sneak into the luxury suite when it opened.) Then the stadium had to close for $10 million-plus in new repairs. Well, this Friday the gates will open once again.

Josh Hamilton Is Incredible. There’s no way of knowing why exactly the Angels decided to send Hamilton back to the Rangers, a division rival, while also paying most of his very expensive salary. But we’re glad they did. This weekend, in his first home series back with the good guys, he had one multi-homerun game, and one game-winning, walk-off pinch hit. The moment was so exciting, a few players doused an unsuspecting reporter with Gatorade.

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Podcast: That Sports Girl, Gina Miller, Talks Josh Hamilton And Building Her Own Media Empire

Thursday afternoon former CBS 11/TXA 21 sports reporter Gina Miller — now proprietor of Gina Miller Media and Gina Miller’s Blog —  stopped by the Old Monk to talk about Josh Hamilton’s return, her new life as a lifestyle blogger, and why she was forced to endure years of living in Houston during the 1990s.

Also whom does Tim force Gina to call and confess her undying love for in the middle of the show? You’ll have to listen to find out.

First, a few clarifications and audio-visual aids for the episode:

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Leading Off (5/29/15): Floods Submerge Dallas-Fort Worth

Dallas Under Water. Over night a huge, slow-moving storm dumped heavy rain across DFW, officially making this the wettest May on record in these parts. The previous high mark was 13.66 inches, and we’re likely still not done for the month. Don’t try to drive through flooded roads.

Much more, and other news, after the jump…

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Should We Really Be Trying to Build a Park in the Trinity?

I was out of town last week so I missed much of the rainfall that has now transformed the Trinity River flood plain into a broad, fast-flowing, messy river. It’s a lovely sight: passing over the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge on the way into the office and seeing water running from bank to bank underneath the series of bridges that for too much of the year look like exaggerated spans traversing a tiny creek.

There’s something beautiful but also terrifying about the swollen Trinity. Its snarling, brown waters smother trees up to their spindly tops. The floodwaters push out against the long ridges that funnel water past the city. A hundred or so years ago, that water would be lapping up against downtown buildings and sweeping away the foundations of homes.

These occasional floods are good for the city. We certainly need the rain. But perhaps as important is the reminder they offer that Dallas exists within a particular natural environment, and that nature isn’t always friendly.

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Mavericks Enter Offseason With a Ton of Questions

This is what it feels like to be a Mavs fan sometimes, this season especially. We’re kind of back where we started, no?

I would say most Mavs fans were fairly optimistic entering the 2014-15 season. I was. Maybe some people were too optimistic, given the fact that Tyson Chandler was back on the team. But it was hard not to be. The organization had signed its first high-profile free agent — Chandler Parsons — in pretty much forever, and had made a series of smart, low-cost moves to rebuild its roster after the 2011 title squad was scattered around the league. This was the best Dallas Mavericks team since then, and there was a whiff of “why not us?” to it. No one had predicted a championship back then. Why not now? Dirk Nowitzki was still around, and was still mostly the same, still capable of knocking down those malfunctioning-machine fadeaways.

During the early part of the season, “why not?” was answered pretty definitively: because the Mavs could not stop any team that had a remotely effective point guard.

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