The Christmas Waltz

The Chron E-Board today has a take on the I-45 deal that was announced a couple of days ago and they don’t sound enthusiastic about the deal.  Here is a part of their take:

The announcement was heralded as a major breakthrough but met with mixed feelings, which we share. Written commitments are better than none but executed ones are best. After years of public organizing and input, a federal investigation still underway, and a 2021 county lawsuit citing problems with the way the state agency had conducted its environmental review for the 25-mile project, the agreements were unveiled at a press conference with remarks from local and state officials on what amounts to one of the largest infrastructure projects in the Houston area in a generation.

Several public officials took care to thank the activists who helped create an unprecedented amount of public feedback and pressure, although none of those activists spoke at the event, hinting at divides that still persist.

The transit equity advocacy group LINK Houston, released a statement shortly after the city’s event saying it was “disappointed” by the “closed-door negotiations” and continuing to question the idea that more highway capacity would do anything but add more traffic. But the group still lauded one major achievement: a commitment from the state to reevaluate two of the three project segments to try to stay within the current highway footprint.

“You ask for what you want and then you take as much as you can get,” County Commissioner Rodney Ellis said, part-thanks, part-directive.

Mayor Sylvester Turner said that after months of calls between the city, county and state, all had made significant progress toward what could be “an excellent project” that will “benefit the greater good.”

We won’t go that far. But we find some cause for hope in the agreements, and, critically, in the continued pressure from citizens and community groups who have pushed for a better project for years and who will be needed going forward to ensure the promises of this week’s agreements are fulfilled.

Here is the entire E-Board take: The road goes on for I-45 after Houston, Harris County reach agreements with the state. (


One, two, three, one, two, three.

Just when I thought I was done talking about the Christmas tunes, they pull me back in.

“The Christmas Waltz” is a tune that was first recorded by Frank Sinatra in 1954.

Here are the starting lyrics to the tune:

Frosted windowpanes
Candles gleaming inside
Painted candy canes on the tree
Santa’s on his way
He’s filled his sleigh with things
Things for you and for me

It’s that time of year
When the world falls in love
Every song you hear seems to say
Merry Christmas
May your New Year dreams come true
And this song of mine
In three-quarter time
Wishes you and yours
The same thing, too

Over the past decades, numerous artists have covered the tune including Andy Williams, Natalie Cole, Kristen Chenoweth, Norah Jones, and She & Him. My favorite is the one by The Carpenters. Add another.

Yesterday, a friend of mine played the tune for me on her iphone and asked me to guess the artist.  It was more of a speaking version rather than a singing version. It sounded cool. I couldn’t guess the artist. She told me only one person she played it for had guessed correctly. It was Jeff Goldblum, as in today’s featured photo.

“The Christmas Waltz” is also a Hallmark flick with Lacey Chabert and the tune is played. The flick came out in 2020.

Now you know so go check it out.


You know why I like our chances of a World Series Championship repeat. Michael Brantley and Yordan Alvarez will be splitting left field and DH duties.  Here is what Branley said yesterday:

“I’m a team player. Team comes first, always. I just look forward to contributing in a positive way each and every day, any chance I get. If that’s what they want to do, I’m all for it. If (Alvarez) needs a day and I can go out there in left field, I’ll be ready to do that as well. I think we do a great job of communicating how everyone is doing and trying to keep everyone fresh in the process. Whatever they need me to do.”

“I just look forward to being out there with my teammates contributing and just enjoying the atmosphere my teammates bring each and every day. They get the best out of me and I try to get the best out of them.”

Class act for sure. The quote is in the Chron.

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