@@@ The Strange Case Of The OSHA Inspections

We were involved in a very high profile construction project in Austin, the north extension of Loop One. This was during a time span between 2005-2007. We were a subcontractor relocating various water and wastewater lines to allow for the highway expansion. All eyes were on us, as we were working for a consortium comprised of two large highway contractors, with oversight by TxDot, The Tollway Authority and City of Austin. Our work is always under scrutiny, due to the dangers involved in digging deep trenches, but this project had many extremely difficult circumstances with traffic congestion being one of … Continue reading @@@ The Strange Case Of The OSHA Inspections

The Pipe Bursting Experiment

Back in the 1980s I was contacted by the owner of an apartment complex over in “Apartment City”, the area along Riverside Drive east of I-35 in Austin. The city was requiring them to upsize the wastewater, as it wasn’t adequately handling the amount of flows that the apartment was generating. Evidently a few years before, when the project was built there had been a sizing miscalculation. With it being a nice property with beautifully landscaped yards they wanted the disruption to be held to a minimum. I made some phone calls and found a company in Louisiana that was … Continue reading The Pipe Bursting Experiment

An Unfortunate Situation

It was not long after I graduated high school that Cecil, my dad, hired on one of his trucks to haul equipment with an old Austin trucking firm. I was the driver that went with the truck. Charlie Evans had spent many years in the heavy haul business in Austin and branched out and opened up a second yard down in San Antonio. Business was expected to be pretty good there so I ended up being based out of that yard, which was on the east side out on I-10, near WW White Blvd. I stayed in a fairly dated … Continue reading An Unfortunate Situation

@@@ Wilson’s Story

Wilson was a child born probably in the mid sixties. There were siblings I remember hearing, but I’m unsure how they faired in life. Wilson ended up at the Austin State School. A ward of the state. My Granny Ruby worked there for many years in 60s and 70s and maybe even a little in the early 80’s. She took a special interest in Wilson. No one every came to see him, so see took him under her wing. It was easy to tell that Wilson never really developed physically or mentally, but he had a sweet disposition about him. … Continue reading @@@ Wilson’s Story

Checking Out People As A Hobby

I don’t know why, but I’ve always been nosey. I like to find out everything I can about everybody I ever run across. Well almost everyone, but don’t worry I doubt I’ve checked out any of my Angora Friends. Since the beginning of the Internet I have found many ways to obtain sketchy and useful information on people. I even subscribed to several paid services. It has been a good and worthwhile hobby, finding long lost friends for people and rounding up names for class reunions and such as that. In the early days of the Internet it was easier … Continue reading Checking Out People As A Hobby

Have You Ever Gotten A Business Proposition That Sounded Like A Scam? Of Course You Have.

Below is an email proposal that I once received and then my response. For some reason Andrew never contacted me again. “The Proposal”Dear Ronnie Lewis, (Lewis Contractors)My Name is Andrew Dunlop and I work for a company based here in Canada. I have a business proposal which will benefit both of us. I will give you a brief overview on the proposal. I request that you act as an intermediary agent/supplier to my company. In so doing, this will yield high dividends for both of us. However, I need your co-operation to make this business opportunity a success. My company … Continue reading Have You Ever Gotten A Business Proposition That Sounded Like A Scam? Of Course You Have.

The Sound of Hoof-Beats

I was the kind of kid that wanted to ride a donkey while everyone else rode horses. Tar Baby was an average donkey to most but he was my pride and joy. We rode in rodeo parades with me dressed as a clown. Kenny, my older bother was quite the horseman. He lived to break and train horses. I was made to help with the horse breaking, but it was something that I could have done without. By the time I was 7 or 8 years old our spending money came from working with Shetland Ponies. We lived on the … Continue reading The Sound of Hoof-Beats

The Wine Making Kits

Back in the early years of our marriage, before we had so many kids, Christmas shopping was something we enjoyed doing together. Of course after a few years and five sons our shopping habits all changed and I would stay home and Madeline would mostly go it alone. In those early days finding the perfect gift wasn’t always easy when shopping for our fathers. It was hard buying for them and staying within our budget. Nothing frivolous for either, they just weren’t that type. They were men of substance and practicality. At the mall at one of the department stores … Continue reading The Wine Making Kits

The Fiasco Of The Wooden Dolphins

This is the story of making the Wooden Dolphins. During our time living in Corpus Christi a few years ago is when I carved the largest of my projects, a pair of Dolphins. It was during a time when I was really suffering a lot of lower back pain. I received several steroid injections, was seeing a chiropractor often, but nothing was working. A very nice lady that lived out on The Island helped us with our interior decorating. One day I was complaining about my back and she told me about a next door neighbor lady of hers that … Continue reading The Fiasco Of The Wooden Dolphins

The Rear Ender

Being Kenny’s Passenger Can Leave A Feller Hung Out To Dry Sometimes. It wasn’t so long ago, maybe a couple of years back, that Kenny and I went up south of Dallas to look at a piece of equipment he was considering buying. We went through and picked up Ken Akin, out east of Waco on our way up. We had a nice visit that was mostly uneventful, except we exchanged lots of stories. After dropping Ken back at his house we came on south and had to get off to take care of a little business up north of … Continue reading The Rear Ender