Welcome to our little slice of paradise! Clear Lake Shores is probably one of the best kept secrets in the entire Bay Area. Yes we are an island. We are surrounded by Clear Lake, Jarbo Bayou and the Lazy Bend canals. Plug this in to Google Maps and you'll see what I mean 29.32' by 95.01' We are about half way between Galveston Island and the city of Houston and located in north Galveston county. I will try to keep us up on all the goings on that we can walk, boat, bike or drive our golf carts to. Very few things pi$$ me off but one of them is wasting my precious time. I'll try not to waste yours. Enjoy. ab

Monday, July 31, 2017

National Avocado Day

This is for all my Navy brothers. Today is also the 50th anniversary of the day they got the USS Forestal fire under control. Yesterday was day it started. If you were in the Navy or Marine Corps you went. once a year, to Naval Station Mayport for fire fighting school. Much like every Marine is first and foremost a rifleman, every Sailor is first and foremost a firefighter. While there you were shown flight deck footage of the Forestal fire from start to stop. You saw genuine, honest to God, heroes in action. Who the hell else runs in to an inferno carrying a fire extinguisher. Odds are you can find it on Youtube but know this, it is not for the faint of heart. This is the real thing. 131 men lost their lives that day. Over 160 were wounded. Static Electricity is the answer to the question in your brain. Just think winter time and sweaters.
When she was launched she was the first Super Carrier and the largest warship in the world. That was in 1955. She is currently here in Texas, down in Brownsville actually, being cut up for scrap. She was my last ship in 1974. At the time I was with RVAH 7 out of NAS Key West and we were flying RA-5C's. They flew really, really fast and took pictures. Lots and lots of pictures. If you come across pictures of the damaged but saved Forestal you will see a rather large hole port side aft. That hole is above where our sleeping compartment was. It's where a 1000 pounder went off on what I think was an A-4 Skyhawk. (my first and favorite plane) all those 7 years later, and I am not alone in saying this. we could still smell the fire. Non sibi sed patriae. 

On a lighter note, This goes back to about 2005. Fairly new neighbors were babysitting Wyatt while we were off the Island. As was the custom everyone met at Sundial Park for the usual festivities. As the story was told to me young Wyatt approached Ashly with "Miss Ashly, I need to use the restroom". Ashly being a newly imported yankee but quick to adapt to local customs replied "It's OK sweetie, just go behind that tree right there" pointing to one of the huge Blackjack Oaks in the park. Like a boy off he goes. Business concluded he approached with a simple question. "Miss Ashly, do you have any toilet paper?"
I can honestly say I don't know how the story ended. It's still funny.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

National Aunt and Uncles Day.

I'm down to 2. One each. A thousand miles from here. Thank God for Facebook. Said no one ever. Time for a phone call...

See any of these little guys around your place?
I've killed three in the past week. They also come in black.

This little critter is called an ASP. It’s a caterpillar of the Southern Flannel Moth. Neighbor Rob has spotted a couple at his place this week too. 

From the Houston Chronicle.

"Houston area experiencing boom in fuzzy venomous caterpillars"

It sort of looks like a furry Brazil nut. Or maybe a tiny Tribble from Star Trek lore.
You can certainly understand why a curious child might want to pick one up.
But the puss caterpillar, more commonly known as an asp in Texas, packs a wallop of a sting.
Across Houston, social media channels have been flooded with reports of asp stings.
While asps are somewhat common to the Houston region, many long-time residents say they've never seen so many of them.
So be on the lookout for these venomous caterpillars, which typically reach their peak numbers in October and November. After that, they turn into harmless moths that go on to repeat the life cycle.

Be particularly cautious around oak trees. Asps love them, Elms and Hackberrys'

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

National Hire a Veteran Day

If you know anyone that's hiring ...

Cudos to our Marine Division. We watched them "educate" a boater the other day. Topics included Speed limits and No Wake Zones I'm sure. This punkin' head came flying around the corner right at out Police Boat.

So. I'm doing something no one cares for especially you. You have asked me to get off your property before. But I need to get on it again and you are out of town. So is it OK to "sneak", if you can sneak a back hoe, early Sunday morning to dredge a channel because all the dirt you dumped in the Flounder Pond WITHOUT a freakin' bulkhead is oozing all over property that is not yours OK? WTF... still no word from the Corps. I wonder if they will fine him for burying an oyster bed. I wonder how he's going to clean out the outflows that anyone with a functioning brain knows are all but silted in.

Check this out. The next Willie?

Friday, July 21, 2017

National Junk Food Day

junk food
ˈjəNGk ˌfo͞od/
  1. food that has low nutritional value, typically produced in the form of packaged snacks needing little or no preparation.

Pretty sure Jack in the Box tacos are exempt. 

So a few weeks back I sent an email to one of the folks from the USACE. We spoke briefly right after the last load of dirt went in to the Flounder Pond and he gave me his card. This was the reply.

"Thank you for the information.  This is an ongoing enforcement action and I do not have any updates for the public at this time."

Celena Cui
Regulatory-Compliance Branch
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
2000 Fort Point Road
Galveston, Texas 77550
Fax:  409-766-3931

The Corps does have a public webpage that we can drop in on from time to time and check for updates. 
If you're interested the case number is SWG-2017-00331. If you're interested.

So how'd you do yesterday? 69 and Z are the answers. Z because the letters are the last row on your keyboard. In reverse. Go on, Look, you know you want to. I'll wait. See.

I'll throw one more out there because yesterdays were the easy ones. These folks are so out of my league. 

And following yesterday's trend we have this...

NASA denies running a child slave colony on Mars.

Oh thank God! WTF Alex Jones....

Thursday, July 20, 2017

National Pennsylvania Day

July 20 recognizes the second state to join the Union. Once the home of the temporary capital of the United States in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania is also known as the Keystone State. While the source of the nickname has been forgotten, the meaning is not lost. Bridge builders know leaving the vital keystone out of their structure would be folly and would lead to collapse.
Pennsylvania played many roles that could be considered keystones. Its vote for independence was split between its eight delegates and played a vital role in deciding to move toward independence and cementing the union of the newly formed country.
The Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution were signed in Philadelphia during its tenure as the temporary capital. It was geographically centered among the 13 original colonies. Happy Pennsylvania Day?

I like puzzles. But not as much as these folks...
I got this from Melindas' Dad, John. 
GCHQ is the British version of our NSA. Some of the smartest people on the planet work there. They have a little in house puzzle contest every year and at some point they decided to share some of them. I'm gonna share with you. PS. Keep in mind these are the folks that brought us Alan Turing who broke the Enigma code. First, I'll throw you a bone. 
"Last night I wrote down the numbers from One to 99. I then rearranged them in alphabetical order. Which number didn't move?

M,N,B,V,C,X, ?

I'll post the answers tomorrow.

And now for the other end of the spectrum we have this moron. I'm sorry That should have been Moron. Or should it be Mr. Moron?

Self Described Drug Dealer Calls OCSO to Report Theft of Cocaine - A Fort Walton Beach man called the Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office Sunday morning to report that someone had stolen a baggie of cocaine and cash from his car.
32-year old David Blackmon of 119 Carson Drive, who identified himself as a drug dealer, told the responding deputy that someone entered his car while it was parked at 400 Ed Street and stole $50.00 and about a quarter ounce of cocaine off the center console.
The deputy however spotted cocaine still in that spot. He also found a crack pipe on the floorboard by the driver’s door and seat and a crack rock on the center console by the cocaine. The money was not located.
Blackmon is charged with possession of cocaine, resisting arrest without violence, and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

National Hot Dog Day!

I love me a hot dog. grilled, boiled, pan fried, deep fried, whatever
  The National Hot Dog and Sausage Council has designated July as Hot Dog Month and for 2017 Wednesday, July 19 as National Hot Dog Day.
Over 25 million hot dogs are sold at baseball stadiums each year.
On May 31, 2012, a world record was set for the most expensive hot dog. The “California Capitol City Dawg” sold for $145.49 at Capitol Dawg in Sacramento, California.
7-Eleven sells the most grilled hot dogs in North America – 100 million annually.
And 230lb 6'1" Joey "Jaws" Chestnut beat his own previous record by eating 74 Nathans hot dogs AND buns in 10 minutes. I gotta admit, I don't love 'em that much.
This is one of eleven Nathan's Foot longs that were served at Wyatts' Birthday
party last Friday.

See my new driveway? If you've ever pulled in it you're welcome. 
Last March I called League City Construction about doing the job. They were the closest maybe a mile away. They came out, measured and provided an estimate that I agreed to. They'd get back to me. I called in May and left a message. I called two weeks ago and suggested I'd been forgotten. The young lady said she had nothing about the job but she's look in to it and call me right back. 10 days ago I called Mullen. They are in San Leon, maybe 7 miles away. Their estimator called me back and left a message. I called him back and left a message. 

Tuesday I called Sullivan Paving. They showed up yesterday at 6:30 with a crew of 4 and finished about an hour later. 
And they are from Spring. 50 + miles away. I could not be happier with my new driveway. Congrats Sullivan Crew. You have one very satisfied customer. 

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

National Caviar Day

On July 18 recognize a seafood delicacy with roe on toast. It’s National Caviar Day!
In simple terms, caviar is Sturgeon fish eggs. There are several species of Sturgeon fish. As a result, the caviar produced varies in colors depending on the species. Caviar is full of protein and vitamins making the delicacy a healthy meal.
The United States was the leading distributor of caviar around the year 1900 producing over 600 tons a year. However, due to the over harvesting of Sturgeon fish for the caviar, a ban was put in place to protect the Sturgeon fish from becoming extinct. The population has never recovered sufficiently since the ban, resulting in caviar’s continued status as a luxury item.
Are you a fan? I'll pass. I've had the opportunity to sample a few different types and nothing made me want seconds.

To all you boaters out there, Today is the second happiest day (again) for me. 

Half way done on the striping job. My bad, not striping. When we bought it the tin can it came with no title but three bills of sale going back to whoever drug it out of the pasture. We were told it was an Aljo all along and found a few pics on the innerwebs that looked like our diamond in the rough but nothing you could hang your hat on. Till this.

City Council Meeting tonight. Here's your agenda. See you tonight.

Michael McNamara, Mayor Diana Hoerner
S. Bud Solmonsson


REGULAR MEETING July 18, 2017 @ 7:00 pm
Amanda Fenwick, Mayor Pro Tem Christy Lyons Jan Bailey
NOTICE is hereby given of a Regular Meeting of the City Council for the City of Clear Lake Shores, County of Galveston, State of Texas, to be held on the above mentioned date and time at the Club House, 931 Cedar Road, Clear Lake Shores, Texas, for the purpose of considering the following numbered items. The City Council of the City of Clear Lake Shores, Texas, reserves the right to meet in a closed council session on any of the below items should the need arise and if applicable pursuant to authorization by Title 5, Chapter 551 of the Texas Government Code.
    1. 1)  19 Tindel: Violation of the Clear Lake Shores Ordinance Section 78-16: Junked Vehicle
    2. 2)  Possible Revocation of Waterfront Leases for Non-Compliance:
      A-013: William Cain – No longer CLS Property owner B-020: Matthew Donahue – high grass and weeds B-021A: Peter and Deanne Meeh – high grass and weeds C-080: Nancy Schwartz – high grass and weeds
      C-081: Walker Croft – high grass and weeds
    Councilwoman Hoerner Councilwoman Lyons Councilman Solmonsson Councilwoman Bailey Mayor Pro Tem Fenwick Mayor McNamara
    City Administrator George Jones Police Department Chief Cook Building Official Kevin Harrell
    Roads and Drainage
    Planning and Zoning
    Economic Development Corporation
    Waterfront Compliance
    Parks and Pool Committee
    Landscape and Beautification Advisory Committee

    Paul and Linda Merryman: Flounder Pond
    1. Check Register: June 22, 2017 thru July 12, 2017
    2. Minutes from Regular Meeting held June 27, 2017
c. Waterfront Transfer F-147B: Summer Roberts to Daniel and Erin Schutmaat d. Waterfront Transfer F-149A: Michael Calpakis to Joe and Connie Whiddon
  1. COUNCIL BUSINESS - Discussion and possible action may be taken on the following items:
    1. Make recommendation and approve action for Municipal Ordinance Violation 78-16 (junk vehicle) for Clear Lake Shores, Texas property – 19 Tindel. (City Administrator George Jones)
    2. Make recommendation and approve action for revocation of the following Waterfront Leases for non-compliance:
      (City Administrator George Jones)
      A-013: William Cain – No longer CLS Property owner B-020: Matthew Donahue – high grass and weeds B-021A: Peter and Deanne Meeh – high grass and weeds C-080: Nancy Schwartz – high grass and weeds
      C-081: Walker Croft – high grass and weeds
    4. Authorize the City Administrator and the City Secretary to issue checks for all costs related to the purchase of certain land from Edna Suzanne Lee including, but not limited to, the following:
      down payment, realtor fees, financial advisor, legal advisor and any other closing costs related to said purchase. Total to be approximately $150,000.00.
      (City Administrator George Jones)
    5. Appoint a Councilmember to the Waterfront Review Board.
      (City Administrator George Jones)
    6. Appoint Waterfront Compliance Committee member Kurt Otten to the Waterfront Review Board and Ed Waters as alternate.
      (City Administrator George Jones)
    7. Consider and approve recommendation from the Waterfront Compliance Committee concerning the “Common Pier” located along Clear Lake Road.
      (City Administrator George Jones)
    8. Waterfront Leases E-124C, E-125 and E-126: Establish parameters for these leases to prepare for auction: Minimum Bid, amount of days for auction, compliance issues, etc. (City Administrator George Jones)
I, Christy Stroup, City Secretary, certify that this Notice of Meeting was posted on the outside bulletin board at 931 Cedar Drive on or before Friday, July14, 2017.
__________________________________ Christy Stroup
City Secretary

In compliance with the American with Disabilities Act, the City of Clear Lake Shores will provide reasonable accommodations for disabled persons attending City Council meetings. Requests for interpretive services must be made 48 hours prior to this meeting by calling 281-334-2799 or by faxing to 281-334-2866.
City Council encourages positive public comment and discussion during its meetings and reserves time during most Council meetings to hear such comments from either Scheduled or Unscheduled Visitors. However, the Texas Open Meetings Act places certain constraints on topics raised by such visitors where such discussions are not related to an item that has been placed on the Council's posted Agenda (Attorney General Opinion JC-0169). The most effective way for an individual to have their voice heard and receive feedback at a City Council meeting is to contact the City Secretary no later than Noon on the Wednesday prior to an upcoming Council meeting and request that their name be placed on a future agenda as a Scheduled Visitor. When you make this request, please state specifically the subject you wish to discuss. The City Secretary will place your name on the Agenda along with a specific description of the subject to be discussed. If you fail to provide a specific description of the subject of your requested discussion, then Council will have no choice but to refer the matter to City staff for response or defer any feedback or discussion on the matter until a future Council meeting when the subject can be placed on the Agenda. Comments should be limited to five (5) minutes and directed to the entire Council, not individual members. Engaging in verbal attacks or comments intended to insult, abuse, malign or slander any individual shall be cause for termination of speaking privileges and expulsion from Council Chambers. 

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Striper Contest update

But first it's National Pecan Pie Day! Pecan has been my favorite for a very, very long time. Key Lime gave it a run for it's money for a while but Pecan hung in there. If you are a pie fan like me, Put this in your calendar for next year. Volunteer as a judge at the Civic Clubs 4th of July Pie contest. Your taste buds will thank you.

OK Update time. Maybe our contestant from up yonder in the frozen wastelands is just a late riser but after a second coat for the other two and intermittent applications spritzed at will something started happening.  It wasn't much but hey it's a contest right. All told, I'm thinking she needs to get out of the stripping bidness and maybe apply as a greeter.

But after the second coat was removed by the first two I got down to what I assume is the factory paint. While Miss 3 got down to an ugly brownish sticky somethingorother, the first two discovered what appears to be a factory stripe!

MJ found one that looked like this...

What to do, what to do.....

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

National Pet Photo Day

So here's a new picture of Tinker. Hi Tinker, who's a good girl?


First, I had to prepare the stage. The Stage is our 1964 Aljo, Curb Side, below the big windows. I marked off more or less equal space for our three contestants.
Now let's meet our contestants shall we? From left to right...
A true Southern Belle, all the way from Memphis, CitrisStrip. She loves the environment and prefers to be outdoors but she can work behind closed doors if you know what I mean. wink wink. I will confess she does smell yummy!
Next up from beautiful, downtown Wheeling Illinois it is my pleasure to introduce to you, MultiStrip. Don't let her looks fool you, she may not be as vertically gifted as the other two but her name says it all, Multi! Up to 7 layers if you can believe it!
Our last contestant is one tall drink of ......well it's tall. Aaaand Easy! Says so right up front. I'm a big fan of EZ! No messy wardrobe changes, just squeeze. And squeeze. and ... I guess thats all it takes in her hometown of Windsor, Ontario and that's in Canada!

So following all the (very simple) instructions we end up looking like this.

SO far so good. I set my timer while I'm spreading the love to my 20 year old Jeep. 30 minutes later we have this.

And 1 hour later we get to this. Maybe number three just isn't used to the heat. Or maybe it's the humidity. Or, well, Canada...

After an hour and change I scrape it all off and I'm betting that big summer thunder bumper stays out over the bay as I apply a second coat. I'll really put ol' number 3 on heavy this time. Who knows, It might just be shy.
Let's see how long it takes to get down to bare shiny metal.

Monday, July 10, 2017

National Piña Colada Day

A Puerto Rican recipe calls for Coco Lopez and Don Q rum. And it's right on the money. It's so good that back in the day we got Okies to stock Don Q. Yes, It's that good.

Any one see the massive oil slick coming out of the Bayou yesterday? It was way past my boat. Nasty shit.

Keep your shirt on. These strippers don't work in the rain. So the contest will have to wait an extra day. I'll introduce the contestants tomorrow and post ics of the stage.

The never-ending insurance story. Part 5. Tomorrow will be 30 days with no response to my counter. I'mm send them a friendly reminder in the morning.

The crab cakes were delish by the way. Even cold. The recipe made 12 cakes for about $22 and Randalls sells some pre mades for about the same price. I'll try out the pre mades later this week.

If you get really bored and want to watch some of your tax dollars hard at work read this. If you can read the wapo that is...

Saturday, July 8, 2017

National Chocolate with Almonds Day

Sometimes you feel like a nut.... 2 points if you finished that old ad in your head.

From the Civic Club meeting.
The Kids back to school party is tentatively set for 8/17. I say tentatively because if =no one steps up to chair the event it won't happen.
I made a motion to formally adopt the two birds over sun as the official logo of the Club. Mostly because its been around for so long. 40 + years or better. That got the conversation started about creating a new logo. Drop the Prez your 2¢.

Anyone have a Roberts Rules of Order I can borrow? Or better yet donate to the Civic Club?

Next week I'm having a stripper contest. It will be here starting Monday. See you then.

Time for a boat ride.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

National Fried Chicken Day!

Can't beat that. I wonder what ever became of our newest business in the Home Depot parking lot? One was supposed to be a Chicken place and the other a do- nut shop. Hmmm. I'll have to check that out.

Another Independence day is history. And this is another Thank You to the folks at Landry's for putting on one heck of a Fourth of July Week. Five days leading to to the 4th and trotting out new displays every day. I personally love the smiley face firework. Here's something from Mental Floss about fireworks.

"...When it’s airborne, a second explosion is triggered inside the shell by a time delay fuse. The bursting charges set off the stars—small, explosive pellets made of fuel and metallic compounds that create the lights in the fireworks display. Different metals create different colors when they ignite: barium goes green, calcium salts go orange, magnesium goes white, copper is blue, lithium turns red, and sodium becomes gold. And the arrangement of the stars will determine the shape of the explosion—so if they’re packed in a heart shape, they should reproduce that heart shape in the sky...."
Pretty cool

We are prepping our 64 Aljo for a new paint job. For a lot of reasons we started on the back end and are 85% done with 70% being down to shiny aluminum. We experimented with different strippers but all are eco friendly. We are staying away from the crap that can kill things including us. The orange based stripper definitely has better results. What's weird is that some areas bubble up as expected and the area right next to it does nothing. Both products advertise the ability to strip more than one layer but they don't say that it might take three coats of stripper. Time to get another coat on.

Civic Club meeting tonite. 7 PM at the Club House. I can't wait to hear how they did on the membership drive Tuesday. If you haven't joined yet please do so soon. We did it online.

This is on the menu tomorrow. I'm off to get the ingredients. 

Here's some more neighbors...