Friday, May 26, 2006

Two Baby Bulldogs

Two Baby Bulldogs
Originally uploaded by faithwearspurple.
We need some more Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts in political office now don't we? With all the excitement of finding out that scuba gear is now a necessary inclusion in the Tour De Cure biking events, we forgot to tell y'all that LittleLarry went to his grandson's (COMM-D's littlest baby) bridging into Cub Scouts as a Tiger Cub (Growl, Momma!) As you can see by the photo, LittleLarry was a cub scout hisveryownself back in the day, along with his brother Eddie Lee, and their mom Delores as their troop leader. LittleLarry loved scouting, and not just because it was a family affair. It taught him many of the principles that he holds dear today and we are hoping it will do the same thing for Baby Sam.

And you gotta love a man in uniform.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Bulldog Off The Bike

Well, Little Larry probably doesn't want me to tell you this - but he is showing his age. He no longer walks purposefully, he walks carefully and slowly. His wounds are so bad that he can't even drive right now. I have the fun of getting up at 6AM and keeping his hours, driving him to work, and fighting the 6 PM traffic to pick him up at work. He comes home, gets the bags of ice in the freezer, and sits on the sofa surrounded by them. After about a half hour he is up to eating a little dinner. (Another funny thing about this man - he refused to eat in front of the TV - even if the weather channel has something terrible compelling on, he still wants to eat his dinner at a real table, sitting in a real chair.) He takes a Benadryl, some Advil, and then very carefully gets into bed, with more ice. This morning Bubby set his alarm to drive his dad to work, so I could sleep a little longer. We are getting ready for the State Convention early in June. Our delegation chair is having a meeting next week, and has invited the candidates for State Party chair. It seems 2 of them will be coming. And graduation is almost upon us, and our Last Baby is ready to leave San Antonio for a new adventure. Since he was at a fencing tournament the day Josten's came to school, it is now an incredible circle-jerk getting his cap and gown. Josten's is pain to deal with, even if it ends up costing them money - thank goodness bubby didn't want a class ring - I would have hated to give that company any more money than absolutely necessary. So, I have to go to their HQ in San Antonio, promptly at 3:30 PM, and wait with "cash, exact change only" to try to get him a cap and gown for Sunday's graduation. A friend said it would be a nice statement if he was in the procession without one, to protest the war in Iraq. Talk about a blast from the past - I remember graduation protests of the Vietnam war. I seem to remember black armbands on those big sleeves, and hand-lettered signs being carried under the gowns for coordinated display, though - not doing without the cap and gown. The whole graduation thing seems so anti-climactic to us after the drama of college applications and acceptances. Bubby said it will be his first summer in 6 years without summer academic assignments.

Well, gotta go put those ice packs back in the freezer, and start gettin' ready for the graduation festivites. Best wishes to all graduates and thanks to those who sacrificed so they could succeed.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Bulldog On A Bike ( Semper Fi )

Well, you may remember that Candidate Larry agreed to ride the Tour de Cure with Treasurer Terry back in January. He has been training ever since, first on Bubby's bike, then on his very own, which we bought around St. Patrick's Day. Yesterday was Leg One, the first 50 miles of the ride. Man, did the candidate feel fantastic after the first day! He wished they had gone ahead and done 80 miles instead of 50, even though COMM-D and Treasurer Terry convinced him the 50 would be far enough; besides, Terry's knees have been acting up so bad lately, he has been limping. So they felt like Big Dogs, indeed, at the end of yesterday's ride. They participated in the first day's festivities in San Marcos, slept in a dorm at TSU, and got up bright and early this morning for the last 58 miles of the ride. They felt great.

At about the 8 mile mark, a support van (driven, evidently, by a real rookie) ran the Candidate off the road, on a bridge, and into a river. Larry doesn't know which one, but doesn't think it was the San Marcos. Anyway, he and the bike went sailing into the air and dropped about 12 feet into a river. He doesn't remember the impact, just the split second before he went sailing, and then came to trying to get out of the water, with folks all around him. Terry went in after the bike, and the medics swarmed Little Larry. The bike was damaged, so the rookie van driver took it to the next stop, and the medics took Larry there; where they were astounded that he insisted on finishing the ride. After the mechanic made the bike rideable, he and Terry took off, losing about an hour and a half.

I expected him at the finish line at Akins H.S. in south Austin just after 11 this morning, but he wasn't there at 11, nor 11:30, nor 12, nor 12:30. He had called me to tell me that his phone no longer worked, but that was all I knew. Finally, at about 12:45, he and Terry rode slowly to the finish line, very slowly. Larry was white as a ghost, the Chickasaw in him bleached beyond recognition. He veeeerrrry slowly got off the bike, limped over to the water station, and got his water bottle filled. Terry then told us the story of the trip off the bridge, the medic swarm, the waiting for the bike to be fixed, and the notariety it all created. The fact that Larry Stallings stayed true to his nickname, "Bulldog", and finished the ride, did not surprise Treasurer Terry in the least. He served with Larry in the Army, and knows that the size of the fight in the dog is what makes a good soldier. Everybody else along the way was really surprised, though. When they saw his number, they all said, "Oh, you're the guy who went over the bridge! Why are you still riding?", not believing anyone would finish the ride with his injuries. His whole right side is one bloody abrasion from his knee to the side of his head, he is nicely bruised from the middle of his back around to the front, and he seems to have badly bruised ribs. But he finished the frakkin' ride.

When I called COMM-D on the way to Dr. Derrek's who lives nearby (I wanted to know if I should take him to the ER, or just go home), she went nuts. I told her to go blog it because I didn't know when I would be home and she said, "I don't feel like blogging this. I feel like calling the Tour de Cure organizers and going F****in' nuts with them! Larry is an old man! The guy that ran him off the road needs to be bitch-slapped! This was supposed to be a fun ride, not a combat zone! He's an old man!"

Well, to a 31 year old daughter, he may look like an old man. He is rather grey haired, and has a lot of laugh lines. But he's really a bulldog. A bulldog who is currently taking a nap, but still a bulldog.

Now, this episode tells us something important about this candidate. For those of you that need a little hint - this is the kind of guy you want representing you in the Lege. This guy isn't the four-hour-lobbyist-lunch guy. This guy isn't the type who will have aides do all his reading and all his work. This is a guy made in the mold of Jim Hogg, who does what he says he will do. This is the Bulldog of 122, who puts the job before himself, puts his people before himself. Isn't this who you want sitting in that chair and making those votes in the Lege?

Semper Fi, yes indeedy.

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