Tuesday, March 31, 2009

SandBox Inn Review (Hey! I'm an "Institution!")

From: "Where to Find Luxury Vacation Rentals in South Padre Island" at travel.aol.com

* The SandBox Inn - Owned and operated by local institution "Sandy Feet," the Sandbox Inn is an eclectic mixture of contemporary fusion and old-world creativity. As the top half of her beach house, Sandy Feet rents out the space to families with a creative edge. Use her back yard for creative purposes and bring her a rock when you come!

I love this.


Thursday, March 26, 2009

Craft Camp Gals March Madness Birthday Beach Picnic

Are all car salesmen LIARS?!

I want to lease a Honda Element. I can so see myself lugging around shovels and buckets in one of those honeys...
Filled out the online form. Got a call from Arnold at Gillman Honda. "I probably can't afford this," sez I, cautiously.
Sure you can, he purrs. What's the top monthly you can do?
No problem. How much down?
Not sure. You tell me.
How about $1800. Plus the first monthly for a total of $2000.
Really??!! You can do that? On an Element?
Yeah. It's a 2008 though, not a 2009.
I am so there.

So Dad Feets and I drive all the way to San Benito -- only to discover that of course Arnold can't do that. He can't do anything close to that. We ask for the bottom line and it is half again as much as he told me on the phone.

I am angry. Angry about my dashed expectations. Angry about my lost morning. Angry at being duped by a stupid car dealer. Really really angry.

Bottom Line? I recommend avoiding Gillman Honda of San Benito like the plague.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Hey Texas Dog-Lovers!

Dallasites have an amazing opportunity that I think you should throw your full support behind. The proposed dog park in Frisco sounds like a great idea, and the March 29 "Rover Rally" dog festival sounds like too much fun!

Visit the dogpark website and then join the dogpark facebook group and get involved in making the Big D more dog-friendly.

Which reminds me hat we sure could use something like this here on SPI. I visited a beach in Tasmania that allowed unleashed dog play for a few hours early in the morning. Do you suppose there are enough local dog people - and people who cater to tourists who travel with their dogs - who would throw their support behind a plan like this?

Monday, March 23, 2009

Third Coast at Parrot Eyes

I thought this shot turned out kinda nice...

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Hey Mirage (redux)

I was out walking the dog in front of your shop again at 8 this morning and saw someone out there cleaning up the parking lot. Good on ya!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

When will Psychadeli open in its new location?

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Hey Mirage!

Shoutout to the T-shirt shop on the corner:

It is 8 AM on Texas Week Wednesday. I am walking my dog, and I notice that you are open. I also see that you clearly have no customers. Bummer that. Upon further observation, I note the trash that has accumulated in your parking lot. I can only surmise that you have at least one employee on duty, and that said employee is undoubtedly sitting on his/her ass - possibly nursing a hangover - instead of cleaning up the mess in the parking lot.

I would unlitter your parking lot - I have done it before - but I just unlittered a large swath of the beach and am feeling unlittered out.

So why can't you pick up your own trash already?

Monday, March 16, 2009

World Championship Sandsculpture Contest at risk

This from sculptor David Billings (originally posted on Facebook):

I have spoken with John Green today and he informed me that he will no longer be sponsoring the Sand Sculpture events at Harrison Hot Springs due to his wife having a stroke. Please send him your wishes.

John informed me that the Town of Harrison has $100's of thousands of dollars available to put on the sand events, but have no one willing to step up and keep the event going or have any backing by the Mayor or councel. Black Press is still interested in being the Major Sponsor for the event, but with no support from the Town counsel. John also indicated that the Mayor is about to approve $1.5M to erect a concrete tourist attraction around the lagoon area instead of having the sand sculpture events.

I have posted the Mayor's name, number and e-mail address above and a link to Harrison. PLEASE SEND AN EMAIL OR CALL HIM TO VOICE YOUR OPINION, DISAPPOINTMENT OR OTHER COMMENTS

TELEPHONE: 001.604.796.2171 (-08:00GMT)
E-MAIL: Mayor@HarrisonHotsprings.ca


Sunday, March 15, 2009

What my weekly google ego alert turned up

Folio is the literary agency that represents me.
Lucinda's Press Sheet

Friday, March 13, 2009

BeachBillboard wedding present

This is how it works:
1. you tell me what you want the billboard to say/look like
2. I pick a pretty day to go build it
3. I shoot some pictures and send you a watermarked sample
4. You send me a few bucks. (I accept checks, credit cards and paypal)
5. I send you photo files
6. You print, frame, post on facebook, etc. etc. etc.

How cool it that?


Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Why your sand sucks for sandsculpting

Amazin' Walter took this amazing closeup shot of two very different grades of sandsculpting material. The sample on the right is some of the best beach sand we have had the good fortune to encounter - genuine grade AAA South Padre Island beach sand. The stuff on the left is -- inferior. Definitely inferior.

Sunday, March 08, 2009

book list

BBC Book ListShare
Yesterday at 11:17am
The BBC says that most people have read only 6 of the 100 books listed here. How do your reading habits stack up?
1) Copy the list into a new note and then put an 'x' after those you have read.
2) Add a '+' to the ones you LOVE.
3) Star (*) those you plan on reading.
4) Tally your total at the bottom.
1 Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen x+
2 The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien x+
3 Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte x+
4 Harry Potter series - JK Rowling x+
5 To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee x
6 The Bible x
7 Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte x+
8 Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell x
9 His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman x
10 Great Expectations - Charles Dickens
11 Little Women - Louisa M Alcott x+
12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy x
13 Catch 22 - Joseph Heller x+
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare
15 Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier x
16 The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien x+
17 Birdsong - Sebastian Faulk
18 Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger x+
19 The Time Traveller’s Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
20 Middlemarch - George Eliot
21 Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell x+
22 The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald x
23 Bleak House - Charles Dickens
24 War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
25 The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams x+
26 Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh
27 Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky x
28 Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck x
29 Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll x
30 The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame x+
31 Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy *
32 David Copperfield - Charles Dickens x
33 Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis x+
34 Emma - Jane Austen x
35 Persuasion - Jane Austen
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - CS Lewis x+
37 The Kite Runner - Khaled Husseini x
38 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres
39 Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
40 Winnie the Pooh - AA Milne x
41 Animal Farm - George Orwell x
42 The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez x+
44 A Prayer for Owen Meaney - John Irving x+
45 The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
46 Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery
47 Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy x
48 The Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood x
49 Lord of the Flies - William Golding x
50 Atonement - Ian McEwan
51 Life of Pi - Yann Martel
52 Dune - Frank Herbert x
53 Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons
54 Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen x
55 A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth
56 The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57 A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens x
58 Brave New World - Aldous Huxley x
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez x+
61 Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck x
62 Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov
63 The Secret History - Donna Tartt
64 The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold x
65 Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas
66 On The Road - Jack Kerouac x
67 Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy x
68 Bridget Jones’s Diary - Helen Fielding
69 Midnight’s Children - Salman Rushdie
70 Moby Dick - Herman Melville
71 Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens x
72 Dracula - Bram Stoker x
73 The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett
74 Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson
75 Ulysses - James Joyce x
76 The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath x
77 Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
78 Germinal - Emile Zola
79 Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray x
80 Possession - AS Byatt *
81 A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens x+
82 Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
83 The Color Purple - Alice Walker x
84 The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishigaro
85 Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert x
86 A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
87 Charlotte’s Web - E.B. White x
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
90 The Faraway Tree Collection - Enid Blyton
91 Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad
92 The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery x
93 The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
94 Watership Down - Richard Adams x+
95 A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
96 A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute
97 The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas x
98 Hamlet - William Shakespeare x
99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl x
100 Les Miserables - Victor Hugo


Saturday, March 07, 2009

Gaining Momentum

My quest to be sponsored at Texas Sandfest by the businesses and individuals of South Padre Island has been helped along by my friend Will's post at spiforum.org:

This site is self-explanatory.

The PR opportunity for SPI is obvious. Additionally, please know Chapter 351 of the Texas Tax Code makes clear that the Town itself could legitimately sponsor and underwrite such an activity from hotel/motel occupancy tax. I have absolutely no doubt about this permissibility, and in my judgment, it absolutely should do so. Such little community investment for so large a probable return.

Regardless, if those of us who read this forum really want to make SPI special, we should not ignore our local but nationally-recognized talent, but instead support it, especially when it is so clearly beach and Island-related.

Want to do something positive? Do this. What a shame if we do not.

Will Davis

Thanks, Will!
I have thusfar raised a total of $425 towards my goal of $1000, and so far the following names will be carved on my plot billboard:

Paragraphs Books

Want your name up there too? Mere money will get it there - e-me! (lucinda at sandyfeet.com)

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Sponsor Me, South Padre!

Local Sand Sculptor Seeks Sponsorship

Tough economic times are taking their toll on everyone - including South Padre Island sand sculptor Lucinda “sandy feet” Wierenga. She is scheduled to compete at the Texas Sandfest in Port Aransas in April - the largest such event in Texas and one which draws over 100,000 spectators from around the state. But with the event just one month off, she finds herself without sponsorship.

“Sandfest is set up so that individual master sculptors are sponsored by (mostly local) businesses. My longtime sponsor - Port Aransas Realty - was unable to come up with the money this year. I was given permission by the event organizers to offer a sculpted sign at my plot, carved with the name/logo of my sponsor. This will be the only plot with a sculpted sign instead of a banner, which I think will help it stand out in the crowd.... and get photographed right along with the incredibly beautiful sculpture I intend to carve on my plot.”

Wierenga posted this information on her blog, and the response has caused her to formulate another plan that would allow her to say that South Padre Island itself has sponsored her.

“My idea is to carve this ‘sand billboard’ into the form of a big signpost. I envision “South Padre Island” carved large, with an arrow pointing south and ‘150 miles’ (or whatever the exact number is, as the crow flies) carved above it. Below I would carve in smaller type the names of up to 10 individuals or busineses willing to contribute $50- $100 each to have their names or business names carved into the sign. This is very affordable advertising!”

Wierenga plans to carve the sign off the clock, on her own time and early enough in the event to make sure it stands for at least four days, giving it maximum crowd exposure. “I think it will remind everyone who attends that there is another - even better! - end of the island while giving me a good opportunity to talk to the spectators about SPI and our sand sculpture event (Sandcastle Days) that happens in Oct.

Wierenga figures the whole community can benefit from the publicity, as the sponsor also gets mentioned in all the event’s promotional materials. Furthermore, with the total amount divided ten ways, the sponsorship figure becomes manageable.

“And I already have three takers,” she adds with a grin.

More Information:

Texas Sandfest - http://www.texassandfest.com
Lucinda Wierenga - http://www.sandyfeet.com
Beach Billboards - http://www.beachbillboards.com

The list of sponsors as of 3/5/09:

Charles Pugsley Fincher

Amazin' Walter
The SandBox Inn

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Hanging out with a photographer

Steve is a commercial diver from Corpus. And he shoots pretty good, wouldn't you say?