Making A Case For Eavesdropping

It happened on the steps on the church house. Several of us were lingering outside the building after church one day. As I spoke with one elderly gentleman, two of our other members where close by having a conversation about a potential land dispute, with one of these fellows being an attorney and the other one owning a parcel of land. It seemed that the landowner was having difficulties with TxDot over what was a very tiny parcel of land. Several years before TxDot was expanding one of their highways and through right of eminent domain had taken this man’s … Continue reading Making A Case For Eavesdropping

A Trip Up Sheffield Hill

I had been waiting almost 47 years to retrace some tracks that I made in what seems like a different lifetime. My wife and I made a trip out to Big Bend about 3 years ago, so it was a prefect time see what the big deal with Sheffield Hill was. (also called Lancaster Hill) Driving A Cattle Truck Soon after graduating from high school, I was still 17 years old, I got hired on as a relief driver, driving a cattle truck for the Wenmohs Ranch. I was a team driver with Wallace Herbert. I guess you could say … Continue reading A Trip Up Sheffield Hill

I Would Be Considered Dink’s Stalker In Today’s Terms

Dink McDuff was one of my best friends in my earliest days in the contracting business. I had know him since about 1963 or 64. He and my Dad had worked for the same company, doing underground utility construction. I thought he was the funniest person I’d ever met. Being about 12 years old upon our first encounter, it didn’t take much to impress me. After going into business at 19 years old our paths crossed and it didn’t take long for us to have some sort of a partnership. It wasn’t an enduring sort of deal, so within a … Continue reading I Would Be Considered Dink’s Stalker In Today’s Terms

The Check Washer

Years ago, maybe 1977 or 78 a fellow showed up in our office selling portable check embossing machines. Those are the ones that punched a series of tiny perforations in the amount line of the check, to make it less likely to be forged. As part of his sales pitch he had us write out a check and within 3 minutes he had put a solution on the check and washed all the ink off. He left our signature on it by taping over it before the washing started. Then he made it out to himself with a million dollars … Continue reading The Check Washer

If you want something badly enough, can you make it happen?

Is it possible for a person to want something enough that they can make it come true ? My case in point; My grandson Will loves basketball more than almost anything. He knows that being tall will make him a better basketball player. He comes from a family of not extremely tall people, on either side. But now as he starts his sophomore year in high school he is 6’-2” tall and it doesn’t appear he’ll stop growing anytime soon. So is there a special force at work? I guess we’ll just have to stand back and watch what happens. … Continue reading If you want something badly enough, can you make it happen?

Enjoying Spending Time With My Two Oldest Granddaughters

It was 8 years ago yesterday when Holly and Emma were early teen and preteen. The three of us went down to The Woodlands, Texas for them to attend a music concert. As they look back and reminisce about that trip I think they count it as one of their best adventures. Now we are one a 8 day trip that had us fly into Salt Lake City, then we drove up to Bear Lake and stayed our first night with them and their Grandma sleeping in a Conestoga Wagon (fixed up very nicely to accommodate the three of them) … Continue reading Enjoying Spending Time With My Two Oldest Granddaughters

Enjoying Time With My Two Oldest Granddaughters

It was 8 years ago yesterday when Holly and Emma were early teen and preteen. The three of us went down to The Woodlands, Texas for them to attend a music concert. As they look back and reminisce about that trip I think they count it as one of their best adventures. Now we are one a 8 day trip that had us fly into Salt Lake City, then we drove up to Bear Lake and stayed our first night with them and their Grandma sleeping in a Conestoga Wagon (fixed up very nicely to accommodate the three of them) … Continue reading Enjoying Time With My Two Oldest Granddaughters

Travels Across The Desert

Few people ever went long distances prior to the last 4 or 5 decades. If they did it was making a migration to hopefully find a better life. That was in the summer of 1955. Maw-Maw Nonie and Paw-Paw Theron went with my parents and us to visit folks in California. Kenny and I were both were pre-school age, 3 & 5. All six loaded up in a new Mercury 2 door car that Cec had just bought. It of course didn’t have air conditioning. Being in the hot summertime Cec bought a contraption called a Car Cooler. It was … Continue reading Travels Across The Desert

You Have Got To Be Kidding Me

I had a new Cat 385 that was delivered probably in 2003 or 2004. I ordered it equipped with a mass excavation boom and a short stick. I knew it would limit our ability to go very deep, but most of the jobs we were bidding on were hard rock jobs. When I compared the different stick and boom configurations, the breakout force of the one I ordered was almost double of a long stick machine. If we were going to be successful digging hard rock we need the most force that we could get at the teeth. The machine … Continue reading You Have Got To Be Kidding Me

The Story Of How A Little Ol’ Utility Contractor From Bertram, Texas Came To Own Two Giant Excavators

When we first acquired these machines in the later part of 2007, they were bought for a particular project, that was in some fairly hard limestone. We had approximately 6 to 7 miles of very deep wastewater to lay. We didn’t have our own deep trenchers that it would take to dig the depths we were going to need. We would generally subcontract that portion of the work out. We had equipped our two 385 Cats out with Leading Edge buckets (the very strange buckets at the bottom of the page) and had been having great success excavating rock with … Continue reading The Story Of How A Little Ol’ Utility Contractor From Bertram, Texas Came To Own Two Giant Excavators