The State of Texas: Digging Up The Past At The Alamo
Plus: Downtown light rail systems in Texas come under fire, Dallas’s bachelorette makes her decision, and the Rangers and Astros have drastically different trade deadline experiences.
QUOTE OF THE DAY
“It’s become an addiction.”
—Joshua Jenkins, of Mexia, to KWTX. Jenkins, 24, says he’s the first Texan to “catch” all 145 of the characters in Pokémon Go (for what it’s worth, KWTX wasn’t able to verify that claim with the PokéLords). Jenkins said he spends about 12 to 16 hours per day walking around trying to catch ’em all, aided by a solar-powered battery backpack.
Archaeologists have found a whole bunch of cool knick-knacks at the Alamo since they began excavating the site earlier this month. According to the San Antonio Express-News, nearly 300 or so items have surfaced during the project, including mission-era ceramics, square nails, a bone button, a nineteenth-century piece of glass stamped “San Antonio Apothecary,” a deteriorated utility knife, an old bottle glass, and part of a toothbrush. The dig hasn’t yielded any knock-your-socks-off discoveries yet, unless, of course, you consider the possibility that folk hero Davy Crockett may have also been a trailblazer in oral hygiene to be a big deal. But the dig’s lead investigator, Nesta Anderson, says the results so far provide a valuable window into the day-to-day life of Alamo dwellers. Bigger things may be on the horizon. “We’re all ‘ooing and ahing’ every time we get anything out,” Anderson told the Express-News. “That ‘wow piece’ may be coming up. We just never know.” There seemed to be a pretty big find last week when excavators uncovered part of an adobe brick wall that experts now believe may have been part of “a pier for an arcade with open archways that formed the inner side of the compound’s west wall,” writes the Express-News. But archaeologists still have to do some more research on the bricks before they make an affirmative identification. The excavation is all part of a “master plan” to renovate the Alamo site.
MEANWHILE, IN TEXAS
Dallas has been trying to lay new light rail tracks downtown for a while, but there’s a lot of disagreement over what path the new train should take, and the city’s plan appears to be in flux. According to the Dallas Morning News, the route the city decided on last year apparently won’t work anymore, bringing up another round of criticism and calls for the city to just take the bigger financial hit and move the new tracks totally underground to minimize the disruption of businesses and life downtown. “We found all kinds of stuff where things weren’t where they thought they were,” DART rail planning vice president Steve Salin told the Morning News. “There were things nobody knew about.” Meanwhile, some dude writing for Forbes recently called Austin’s MetroRail system “America’s leading rail transit failure.” Brutal. The Austin American-Statesman did a quick fact check on the article, and while most of what the guy said was true, he didn’t contact MetroRail officials to get their take on being “America’s leading rail transit failure.” One would think they’d have something to say about that.
How did Dallas’s JoJo Fletcher fare on this season of ABC’s The Bachelorette? She won! Well, that’s kind of a given considering she had a whole stable of square-jawed bros to choose from, but it was still nice to know that a Texan was assured to come out on top no matter what this time, especially after her heartbreaking second-place finish in the most recent season of The Bachelor. Fletcher decided to go with a former athlete who is also the younger brother of Green Bay Packers star quarterback Aaron Rodgers, choosing him over a former athlete who is not the younger brother of Green Bay Packers star quarterback Aaron Rodgers. According to the Dallas Morning News, the show’s host quipped to JoJo’s new beau that “we may make a Cowboys fan out of you yet.” We’re assuming that was a pre-requisite for Fletcher accepting his marriage proposal. She seems to be very happy with her selection. According to US Weekly, the couple has already moved in together and lives in Dallas.
Wheeling and Dealing
The MLB trade deadline has come and gone, and the Texas Rangers had themselves a day yesterday, hauling in slugging catcher Jonathan Lucroy from the Milwaukee Brewers and outfielder Carlos Beltran from the New York Yankees, who’s having a resurgent season at the ripe age of 92 (OK, fine, he’s “only” 39). Plenty of pundits and analysts have declared the Rangers the biggest winners of the trade deadline. They added the aforementioned big bats as well as a pretty solid relief pitcher, all without having to give up their most prized young players, Joey Gallo and Jurickson Profar. With the moves, the Rangers appear to have secured a first-place finish in the AL West, a prognostication made easier by the Houston Astros’s failure to make much noise before the deadline passed. Although the Rangers clearly won the deadline, the Astros seem to have lost. As ESPN’s David Schoenfield writes, “they just watched their big rival add three key pieces while they did nothing.”
WHAT WE’RE READING
A tiny kitten, now named Komodo, was rescued from the Komodo dragon pit at the Fort Worth Zoo Dallas Morning News
People in Laredo would prefer it if the city wouldn’t build a toxic landfill in their backyard Texas Tribune
July broke all kinds of heat records in Lubbock Lubbock Avalanche-Journal
Apparently unbothered by perpetuating harmful stereotypes, two bulldogs went after a mail carrier in Lufkin Lufkin Daily News
Here’s what went down that night Typhoon Texas shut down a Christian youth lock-in Houston Press