Spring

Ray, people will come Ray. They’ll come to Iowa for reasons they can’t even fathom. They’ll turn up your driveway not knowing for sure why they’re doing it. They’ll arrive at your door as innocent as children, longing for the past. Of course, we won’t mind if you look around, you’ll say. It’s only $20 per person. They’ll pass over the money without even thinking about it: for it is money they have and peace they lack. And they’ll walk out to the bleachers; sit in shirtsleeves on a perfect afternoon. They’ll find they have reserved seats somewhere along one of the baselines, where they sat when they were children and cheered their heroes. And they’ll watch the game and it’ll be as if they dipped themselves in magic waters. The memories will be so thick they’ll have to brush them away from their faces. People will come Ray. The one constant through all the years, Ray, has been baseball. America has rolled by like an army of steamrollers. It has been erased like a blackboard, rebuilt and erased again. But baseball has marked the time. This field, this game: it’s a part of our past, Ray. It reminds of us of all that once was good and it could be again. Oh… people will come Ray. People will most definitely come.


Back Home

My timer in my truck said the engine was running for a total of 41 1/2 hours between the time I left Ft. Worth last Friday until today when I pulled into the house.  I feel 80 years old right now and trying to get rested up because I’m leaving town again tomorrow for the weekend.  I wish everybody a Happy Easter and thank you for reading the blog.  There are some updates on the petition effort for the TIF/TIRZ and either Jim or I will be updating you on the brick wall we have run into.


Welcome Keller Citizen Readers

Thanks for visiting. For more information and background on our effort to overturn the council’s decision to issue new debt to pay for old debt, please read the category TIF/TIRZ District Refinance.


Commence Lawyering

I have a new post on KCL regarding legal threats to our petition. Check it out.


100 Cups of Coffee

Country singer/songwriter Chris Knight has a song that starts out:

100 Cups of Coffee, 500 Cigarettes

1000 Miles of Highway and I ain’t forgot her yet

These last few days I’ve felt like the first lines of this song. I’m in Illinois trying to take care of some things for the return of my father from the Hospital, his third stay in a little over a week. His stroke has progressively gotten worse, to the point that Friday I was worried if I was going to make it to Illinois in time.

He’s in good spirits but will have a lot of physical therapy to complete before he can get back to normal. It is times like these that you realize how short life is, and I intend to take that to heart moving forward.

I have received some emails asking me if it is wise to back this petition effort on the TIF. My response is that I have nothing to lose. I have been a very outspoken critic of the TIF for nearly a decade, and to walk away from this latest effort that the City Council is undertaking would only show that I have no principles. The other side can run around calling me a nut job all they want……..how is that any different to Chicken Little?

I think I made my presentation to the Council in a very respectful manner, and when asked by Councilman Holmes to clarify items he had questions on, I did it in a manner that proves that I am very well versed in the issues regarding the Town Center TIF District.

Ten miles out of nashville, I was doing a hundred and one
State boy me over and he said, “Where’s the fire, son?”
He said, “Where’s the fire son?”
I said “Man, there ain’t no fire, I’m just running from a flame
Go on and write your ticket, but I ain’t the one to blame”
That county judge tried to rob me blind.

I sit in a state that hasn’t made a serious effort to cut the budget….ever.  They are bankrupt. The police aren’t there to protect and serve, but rather as revenue agents.  The Unions would rather see the state have to become the heaviest taxed in the nation rather than allow a cut.  The roads are in disrepair, they are closing parks, laying off 500 State Troopers, closing prisons…..all because they didn’t make the cuts they needed to make years ago.  And as much as I hate to say it, that could be us in a few years if we don’t make changes today.

So I rolled on down to Memphis,
I had nothin’ left to loose
Wanted to hear some rock n’ roll
But all they played was blues
I didn’t wanna hear no blues

So I went to call up Elvis
But Roger Miller grabbed the phone
He said drive that eighteen wheeler boy
You’re the king of the road
Said I was the king of the road

This is Gary Allan’s cover of Chris Knight’s song…..only thing I could find on YouTube.  Not near the rawness of the original version….my complaint about a lot of country music these days.  Over produced.


A New KCL

Doug and I, and several others, will be launching a petition drive to overturn the council’s (so far) unanimous intent to pay off old debt with new debt, while refusing to even consider budget cuts as an alternative.

And what better occasion to knock the dust off of Keller City Limits? Except this time I’m calling it Keller Citizen Legislature, because that’s effectively what we are.

Keller Citizen Legislature


Happy Birthday Rich

I’m behind trying to get stuff done at the office so I can get out of here and head north, so I will repost a blog article I wrote about him last year.  Happy Birthday man, see you tomorrow.

I am one of five boys, all of us have very different personalities and talents.  I’ve written in passing about my oldest brother Rich who is the publisher of a blog and daily column entitled Capitolfax.  He also has a weekly column that is in over 150 newspapers and another column in the Chicago Sun Times.  The subject of his writing is Illinois Politics and he is an expert on the subject.  When one of the Chicago TV stations needs to bring in a talking head to explain what is going on in Springfield, they usually call my brother. 

But, he still is my brother.  I see him in a different light than most people, I remember him as a kid, as a college roomate and during his years when he struggled to make a living.  I moved away from Illinois while I was a very young man and don’t get to see my family or spend quality time with them as often as I should.  A couple of weekends ago as you readers know, he invited me to come to Chicago and watch a Sox/Rangers game.  He belongs to an organization that owns a block of tickets behind home plate at Cellular One Park and he bid for the tickets in the first round of their yearly auction to make sure we had good seats. 

He picked me up from the airport and had a few words to say as I was decked out in my Rangers gear, saying that he wouldn’t protect me from the throngs of Sox fans.  I laughed knowing we weren’t sitting in the outfield and the people that tend to sit behind home plate aren’t usually the ones to hit you in the back of the head with a beer bottle.  It was a great game, Danks vs. Millwood.  Great pitching, good defense and a fast moving game on a night that would be considered winter for my thin blooded body. 

It was after the game that prompted me to write this entry.  We headed downtown Chicago to the Hyatt Regency to sit in what they call the Big Bar to watch the Blackhawks Hockey game and talk politics with a couple of his friends.  He invited three Republicans to come meet us, I guess because he felt I would have a better time with them than the Democrats he is known to pal around with.  My brother isn’t the lefty he once was, you know, paying taxes and all that has changed him a little, but he is far from a card carrying Republican.  He has become very balanced in his writing and some of the big shot Democrats in the state would tell you he has to be a right winger because of some of his columns.

So here we were, sitting in a bar with three very influential Republicans in the State of Illinois talking politics (Yes, I am aware, there are only 12 Republicans in the state).  The topic was the upcoming Senate Campaign for Obama’s old seat, and whether or not this particular candidate would run for the Republicans, and who would run on the Democratic side.  The conversations were completely off the record, so I can’t go into what was said, but it was fascinating to say the least. 

The deference given to my brother made me chuckle at times, because, you know….he is still just my brother.  While he was away from the table I was telling the story about how all my brother’s names begin with the letter “D”…..and one of the participants stated the obvious…my brother’s name is Rich.  I had to explain to them that yes, his given name is Richard after my father, but as a kid he was Dickie.  

No matter how much of a big shot he is today or will become after he writes his Blagojevich book, when he goes back to Clifton, Illinois to visit family, he will always be Dickie.