The Little Girl Who Wrote the Waltz

The Little Girl Who Wrote the Waltz

By Julia Robb



            Certain kinds of people do not believe in coincidences: They believe everything is planned, that unseen forces coordinate life.

        I’m one of those people, although it’s not always clear who’s in charge of the non-coincidence department­­­–God, guardian angels, or whatever.

        Maybe the dead do their part.

        Here’s what happened a few months ago.

        I flew to San Angelo for a writer thing and one of the lovely people from Stephens Central Library gave me a ride to my bed and breakfast.

        I didn’t like the B&B.

        Traffic was its only lullaby, as it sat right on the highway. It was crowded with so much furniture it was hard to walk through rooms, doodads covered every surface, potpourri penetrated every crack and a soundtrack featuring harps drove me crazy.

        Nope, I thought, and turned to tell the hostess I was moving on.

        Then I saw a piano and the rack held a piece of music so old the parchment was yellow.

        I wandered over to the piano and saw

Fort Concho or Little Tot Waltz By Katie Hammons. Age 9 years. San Angelo, Tex.

        Inside, it said, “Copyright, 1888, by E.W. Hammons.”


        I played the piece. It was simple and plaintive, evoking couples whirling on hardwood floors, girls skirts flaring, candles fluttering, men and boys holding their partners oh so romantically.

        The waltz was written in b flat, and its tempo was allegro, or lively.

        Too bad I can’t reproduce the piano notes here. But if you’re musical, you can follow this little part: high A, B, F, highest D, C.

        Just discovering the music made me change my mind about the B&B. I felt like someone was telling me to stay.

        So I did, and got used to the smell of potpourri.

        I badly wanted a copy of Katie’s music, but the B&B owner did not give me permission to take the waltz to a copy shop.

But I had a feeling.

        Before I flew out I went to the West Texas Collection Archives at Angelo State University to research. And the first thing I did was ask about Katie.

        They had an original Little Tot Waltz and gave me a copy! That made my week.

        The collection also contained about six undated newspaper stories about the Hammons’ family.

        E.W. Hammons, Katie’s father, was a traveling piano salesman and owned shares in the Artesian Well Company. The newspaper reported the dates E.W. sold pianos in Abilene and Ballenger.

        E.W. must have done well. He bought a house and two lots in the “Miles Addition” for $225.

        We know Katie had a B average in fourth grade, and no wonder. School principal H.V. Moulton bragged, to the paper, the grammar school had “A fine globe, fine sets of maps and charts, and our school board has ordered a set of philosophical apparatus.”

        One more thing. The family moved to Waco.


        What happened to Katie? Did she die from some dread disease and was photographed in her coffin, as was often done in the 19th Century?

        I found out, thanks to the kind folks at Waco Historical Society!

        The Hammons lived in Waco one year then moved to Tarrant County (Fort Worth), where the family was listed on the 1920 census.

        In 1930, the family lived in Dallas, on Roseland Street.

        In the 30s, Katie, her father and mother lived in the same house on Roseland, as did sisters Dora, Ray and Rilla, as did Rilla’s husband and three little boys.

        In 1930, Katie, 43-years-old, was an organ teacher.

        E.W. died on June 30, 1934, of heart disease, still living on Roseland Street.

        Katherine Nanette Hammons died Aug. 21, 1962, of colon cancer.

        She was 83.

        Both Katie and E.W. are buried at Restland Memorial Park, in Dallas.

        There you go, two quiet lives.

        We have no evidence, but I believe they were a happy family.

        E.W. was musical, Katie was musical, and they lived together all their lives.

        How he must have loved Katie. He was so proud of his nine-year-old that he published her music.

        Katie, I played your waltz today and you seemed so close, as if you stood right by the piano.


        Julia can be reached at,, on Facebook, on Pinterest, on Twitter, and on

Julia has written several novels which are available as ebooks on Amazon. You can find them by clicking here.

Seriously, Just What is Going On In Our Texas Schools?

Texas Teen Sues School District Over Forced Recitation of MEXICAN Pledge

WFAA’s coverage (Dallas) can be seen here.

Just as the 2011 school year began, Brenda Brinsdon, then a 15-year-old sophomore at Achieve Early College High School (AECHS) in McAllen Texas, was thrust into the national spotlight after she refused to stand up, extend her arms straight out with palms down and recite the Mexican Pledge of Allegiance and sing the Mexican National Anthem.  Reyna Santos, the Spanish 3 teacher, required all her students to recite this allegiance to Mexico.
Brenda Brinsdon  

When the time came for the students to stand up and recite the Mexican pledge, Brenda Brinsdon refused.   Brenda, born in the United States, is the daughter of a Mexican immigrant and an American father.  Brenda is fluent in Spanish and English and is proud of her Mexican heritage, but she is a true blooded American.  So to Brenda, the words of the pledge have a deep meaning. Her conscience and patriotism would not allow her to participate in the assignment.  She believed it was ‘un-American and she was exercising her constitutional right not to be forced to pledge allegiance to Mexico.  The school punished her for her refusal.

As a result, the Thomas More Law Center, a national public interest law firm based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, along with local Texas attorney Jerad Najvar, filed a federal lawsuit on behalf of Brenda and her father William Brinsdon claiming that school officials violated Brenda’s constitutional rights. Click here to read the federal lawsuit.

Ironically, the assignment to recite the Mexican pledge was given during the school’s celebration of Freedom Week, marking the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks and also on U.S. Constitution Day.  According to the McAllen School District policy for Special Programs, social studies classes during Freedom Week were required to recite the text of the Declaration of Independence.  However, excusals from recitation are granted for students who have a conscientious objection.

The longstanding Supreme Court decision, West Virginia State Bd. of Educ. v. Barnette, (1943), and the school district’s own policy prohibit a school from compelling students to recite the American Pledge of Allegiance.  However, the School District ignored those rules when Brenda Brinsdon refused to recite the Mexican pledge. 

Brenda’s refusal was not well received by her teacher, Reyna Santos, or the school principal, Yvette Cavasos.  Both tried to coerce her to recite the Mexican pledge, saying this was just an assignment.  Brenda attempted to discuss reasons for her refusal to pledge allegiance to a country other than the United States with both Santos and Cavasos. When Brenda did not back down, she was punished.

Richard Thompson, President and Chief Counsel of the Thomas More Law Center (TMLC), commented, “Too many Americans—including those of Mexican descent—have suffered and died protecting our nation. It’s astonishing that this Texas school would deny Brenda her right of conscience and free speech not to pledge allegiance to a foreign country.  There is a sad trend in public schools across our nation to undermine American patriotism.  But it’s encouraging to see students like Brenda stand up for America despite pressure from school officials.”


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Santos gave Brenda an alternate assignment; write an essay on the Independence of Mexico.  While performing above average on all previous assignments in the class, Brenda completed this assignment on time but was given a failing grade. She was also required to sit in class over the next several days and listen to student after student reciting the Mexican pledge. 

Following the incident, Brenda was involuntarily removed from her Spanish class.  She spent the class hour in the school’s office, even though she requested to return to the classroom.  Brenda was also given a failing grade on her report card, which was later corrected. 

Brenda videotaped the class on her cell phone and brought it home to show her father.  Click here to see Brenda’s cell phone video.  Mr. Brinsdon attempted to contact several school officials but he never received a return call. Click here to see local news coverage.

The lawsuit claims the school district and school officials deprived Brenda of her right to freedom of speech and equal protection of the law by discriminating against and unjustly punishing her because of her viewpoint.  The lawsuit names the McAllen Independent School District, AECHS Principal, and Spanish teacher Reyna Santos as defendants. 

The Thomas More Law Center defends and promotes America’s Judeo-Christian heritage and moral values, including the religious freedom of Christians, time-honored family values, and the sanctity of human life.  It supports a strong national defense and an independent and sovereign United States of America.  The Law Center accomplishes its mission through litigation, education, and related activities.  It does not charge for its services.  The Law Center is supported by contributions from individuals, corporations and foundations, and is recognized by the IRS as a section 501(c)(3) organization.  You may reach the Thomas More Law Center at (734) 827-2001 or visit our website at

SOURCE Thomas More Law Center


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Screwing in those Light Bulbs!


Q: How many Irishmen does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: 15. One to hold the bulb and the rest to drink whiskey til the room spins.

Q: How many feminists does it take to change a light bulb?
A: One to change it and 15 to form a support group.


Q: How many Californians does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Six. One to turn the bulb, one for support, and four to relate to the experience. 

Q: How many Oregonians does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: Five. One to change the bulb, and four more to chase off the Californians who have come up to relate to the experience. 

Q: How many New Yorkers does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A1: None of your damn business!
A2: 50. 50? Yeah, 50! It’s in the contract. 

Q: How many WASPs does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Two. One to call the electrician and one to mix the martinis. 

Q: How many data base people does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Three: One to write the light bulb removal program, One to write the light bulb insertion program, and one to act as a light bulb administrator to make sure that nobody else tries to change the bulb at the same time. 

Q: How many straight San Franciscans does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Both of them. 

Q: How many Zen masters does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: Two: One to change the bulb and one not to change it. Note: 1 to change and 1 not to change is fake Zen. The true Zen answer is four. One to change the bulb. 

Q: How many Carl Sagans does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: Billions and billions. 

Q: How many folk singers does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: Two: One to change the bulb, and one to write a song about how good the old light bulb was. 

Q: How many surrealists does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Two: One to hold the giraffe, and the other to fill the bathtub with brightly colored machine tools. 


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Q: How many gorillas does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: Only one, but it sure takes a shitload of light bulbs! 

Q: How many doctors does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: Three: One to find a bulb specialist, one to find a bulb installation specialist, and one to bill it all to Medicare. 

Q: How many psychologists does it take to change a light bulb?
A: None, the bulb will change itself when it is ready. 

Q: What is the difference between a pregnant woman and a light bulb?
A: You can unscrew a light bulb. 

Q: How many managers does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Three: One to get the bulb and two to get the phone number to dial one of their subordinates to actually change it. 

Q: How many IBM types does it take to change a light bulb?
A: 100. Ten to do it, and 90 to write document number GC7500439-001, Multitasking Incandescent Source System Facility, of which 10% of the pages state only “This page intentionally left blank”, and 20% of the definitions are of the form “A ——” consists of sequences of non-blank characters separated by blanks”. 

Q: How many Bratzlaver Chassidim does it take to change a light bulb?
A: None. They will never find one that burned as brightly as the first one.


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Q: How many professors does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Only one, but they get three tech. reports out of it. 

Q: How many people from New Jersey does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Three: One to change the bulb, one to witness, and the third to shoot the witness. 

Q: How many psychiatrists does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Only one, but the bulb has got to really WANT to change. 

Q: How many programmers does it take to change a light bulb?
A: None. That’s a hardware problem.

Q: How many Unix hacks does it take to change a light bulb?
A: As many as you want; they’re all virtual anyway. 

Q: How many Bell Labs Vice Presidents does it take to change a light bulb?
A: That’s proprietary information. Answer available from AT&T on payment of license fee. 

Q: How many graduate students does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: Only one, but it may take upwards of five years for him to get it done. 

Q: How many “Real Men” does it take to change a light bulb?
A1: None. “Real Men” aren’t afraid of the dark.
A2: None of your damn business! 

Q: How many “Real Women” does it take to change a light bulb?
A: None. A “Real Woman” would have plenty of real men around to do it. 

Q: How many Jewish mothers does it take to change a light bulb?
A: None. (“That’s all right… I’ll just sit here in the dark…”) 

Q: How many mice does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: Two. (Hint: they are small enough to fit inside) 

Q: How many Polacks does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Just one, but you need 6000 Russian troops in case he goes on strike! 

Q: How many WASPs does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: Silly, WASPs don’t screw in a light bulb, they screw in a hot tub. 

Q: How many Marxists does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: None: The light bulb contains the seeds of its own revolution. 

Q: How many Generals/Politicians does it take to change a light bulb?
A: 1,000,001: One to change the bulb, and 1,000,000 to rebuild civilization to the point where they need light bulbs again. 

Q: How many med students does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Five: One to change the bulb and four to pull the ladder out from under him. 

Q: How many Christians does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Three, but they’re really one. 

Q: How many jugglers does it take to change a light bulb?
A: One, but it takes at least three light bulbs. 

Q: How many feminists does it take to change a light bulb?
A: That’s not funny! 

Q: How many supply-siders does it take to change a light bulb?
A: None. The darkness will cause the light bulb to change by itself. 

Q: How many supply-side economists does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: None. If the government would just leave it alone, it would screw itself in. 

Q: How many  does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: 10: One to hold the bulb and nine to rotate the ladder. 

Q: How many strong  does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: 115: One to hold the bulb and 114 to rotate the house. 

Q: How many  gods does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: Two: One to hold the bulb and the other to rotate the planet. 

Q: How many people does it take to throw away a one Watt bulb?
A: Five: A Black, a Jew, two women, and a cripple… 

Q: How many cops does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: None. It turned itself in. 

Q: How many nuclear engineers does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Fifty-one: One to install the new bulb, and fifty to figure what to do with the old one for the next 10,000 years. 

Q: How many lawyers does it take to change a light bulb?
A: How many can you afford? 

Q: How many football players does it take to change a light bulb?
A: The entire team! And they all get a semester’s credit for it! 

Q: How many lesbians does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: Three: One to screw it in, and two to talk about how much better it is than with a man. 

Q: How many thought police does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: None. There never *was* any light bulb. 

Q: How many federal employees does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: Sorry, that item was cut from the budget! 

Q: How many brewers does it take to change a light bulb?
A: One-third less than for a regular bulb. 

Q: How many Jewish-American Princesses does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: Two: One to get a Tab, and one to call Daddy. 

Q: How many accountants does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: What kind of answer did you have in mind? 

Q: How many economists does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Two: One to change the bulb, and the other to assume the ladder. 

Q: How many civil servants does it take to change a light bulb?
A: 45: One to change the bulb, and 44 to do the paperwork. 

Q: How many mystery writers does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: Two: One to screw it almost all the way in and the other to give it a surprising twist at the end. 

Q: How many existentialists does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: Two: One to screw it in and one to observe how the light bulb itself symbolizes a single incandescent beacon of subjective reality in a netherworld of endless absurdity reaching out toward a cosmos of nothingness. 

Q: How many junkies does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Who says it’s dark? 

Q: How many consultants does it take to change a light bulb?
A: I’ll have an estimate for you a week from Monday. 

Q: How many U.S. Marines does it take to change a light bulb?
A: 50: One to screw in the bulb and 49 to guard him. 

Q: How many members of the Impossible Missions Force does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Five: While Cinnamon creates a diversion by wearing a skimpy dress, I use a tiny narcotic dart to knock out the fascist dictator and remove his body. Rollin, wearing a plastic mask, masquerades as the dictator long enough for Barney to sneak up to the next floor, drill a hole down into the light fixture, remove the burned-out bulb, and replace it with a new super-high wattage model of his own design. Meanwhile, Willie has driven up to the door in a laundry truck. Just before Rollin’s real identity is revealed, we escape to the laundry truck, drive to the airfield, and return to the United States. 

Q: How many technical writers does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: Just one, provided there’s a programmer around to explain how to do it. 

Q: How many editors of Poor Richard’s Almanac does it take to replace a light bulb?
A: Many hands make light work. 

Q: How many Harvard students does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: Just one. He holds the light bulb and the universe revolves around him.

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These 40 Days

by Krista Stone (Guest contributor)

Ash Wednesday sneaked up on me.  I’m not a practicing Catholic, yet there are so many things about the ways my Catholic family celebrates their faith that I am drawn to.  There is much meaning in the walking out of the Catholic faith…The season of Lent is one of those.

I remember the first time I forgot what day it was and mentioned to that person “hey, you’ve got something on your forehead!”  Only to be completely embarrassed once I realized it was Wednesday, that special Wednesday.  The day to remember that I am mortal, and a time to repent and consider from whence I came.

While I was not able to visit any churches on Wednesday due to work (except my own in the evening), I saw a few people at work with that gray cross on their forehead…that gentle reminder that He is everything and I am nothing.  I realized that the day had sneaked up on me again and suddenly realized I hadn’t prepared.  Will I give anything up for Lent this year?  Should I begin something meaningful instead of giving something up?  What would it be, and would it be something truly worth something in my heart, so as to honor Christ’s sacrifice, and at the same time keep always at the forefront of my thoughts how much I depend on Him?

A few options ran through my mind, the first one immediately cast down.  To be honest, I knew that one was “the one,” but I just didn’t want to give that up.  I continued to think about what I could sacrifice that would be meaningful, and while the choices were good, they were not best.  By evening’s end, I had decided.  I have given this particular thing up before, with the Lord’s help, and my life has never been the same.  I pray that He do an even greater work in me this year.

I read this week online that Biblically, 40 is the number of preparation.  Reference:  Jesus’ fast/time of testing,    the number of days that rain poured upon the earth during the great flood, the years spent wandering in the wilderness before arriving at the Promised Land.  I wonder, what will these 40 days prepare me for?  Prepare me to be?  Who will this time prepare me to love, and will I really love them?  I wonder.

“So we’re not giving up.  How could we!  Even though on the outside it often looks like things are falling apart on us, on the inside, where God is making new life, not a day goes by without his unfolding grace.  These hard times are small potatoes compared to the coming good times, the lavish celebration prepared for us.  There’s far more here than meets the eye.  The things we see now are here today, gone tomorrow.  But the things we can’t see now will last forever.”

– 2 Corinthians 4:16-18, The Message


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by Pete Moss

Another reason that we should exercise our currently existing sovereignty (as opposed to secession) is that we have the Obama administrations minions in the EPA actively attacking the energy industry in a concerted effort to bring the USA to its knees. Since the low information voters have wrested control of the system from conservatives (and since many of you took your footballs and went home “Waaaaaah! Romney’s not conservative enough”) there quite probably will be no other option but that of saying No Way José (or Barack) to the Feds and not allowing them to do as they please.

I hear you Greenie Weenies (closely related to the zombified) out there saying, “But traditional energy harms the planet with carbon dioxide!!!”(Say this with the whining tone of a four year old that wants ice cream). If that is so why does the EPA and Green Party darling, Al Gore, sell his awareness media to the Emir of Qatar. One reason, so he can continue to brainwash you morons into shutting down American sources of energy thereby ensuring US dependence on Mideast oil and driving the price of HIS oil even higher. OPEC is a cartel people. If you want to know what that means go here Our current government policies prop them and their phony pricing mechanism up. So you lemmings in the enviropunk category are crusading against one industry to the benefit of a needless global oligopoly. Look it up in your Funk & Wagnall’s.


Here is an example of what is going on here in our own beloved state of Texas her from the Houston Chrinicle blog. An energy company is blaming the Obama administration’s regulatory zeal for its decision to drop plans for a power plant in Texas.


Chase Power Development, LLC, announced last week that they would be halting their previous plans to build the Las Brisas power plant. According to the Washington Times, the project would have created 1,300 direct jobs and 2,600 indirect jobs in the Corpus Christi area.

CEO of Chase Power Development, David Freysinger, said that the $3 billion project would be abandoned due to financial conditions and tightening EPA regulations.

“The (Las Brisas Energy Center) is a victim of EPA’s concerted effort to stifle solid-fuel energy facilities in the U.S., including EPA’s carbon-permitting requirements and EPA’s New Source Performance Standards for new power plants,” Freysinger told the Corpus Christi Caller Times. “These costly rules exceeded the bounds of EPA authority, incur tremendous costs, and produce no real benefits related to climate change.”

So climate change which has been shown to be riddles with errors, hoaxes and just plain not enough data in order to predict anything past next week is driving the agenda. It is not. The agenda is to thwart and destroy capitalism and free market ideas while blaming them for the problems that the socialists create. Think I need an aluminum foil hat? Hmmmm! I seem to remember that during the cols war my leftisit pals used to tell me “Pete, you see a communist behind every door, ha ha ha!”. Then once the Berlin Wall fell and the USSR was no more we found out there was on e behind every door but TWO!

Another case in point is our old pal Gorbachev. Poor old Gorby wasn’t democratic but a staunch supporter of communism.

Mikael Garbage-mouth… I mean Gorbachev

“Gentlemen, comrades, do not be concerned about all you hear about Glasnost and Perestroika and democracy in the coming years. They are primarily for outward consumption. There will be no significant internal changes in the Soviet Union, other than for cosmetic purposes. Our purpose is to disarm the Americans and let them fall asleep.” -Mikhail Gorbachev, speech to the Soviet Politburo, November 1987

When his party was discredited where did he go? Where he could do the most damage. Greenpeace co-founder Patrick Moore (hardly a wild eyed right winger) had this to say

(After the Cold War ‘ended’)”suddenly, the international peace movement had a lot less to do. Pro-Soviet groups in the West were discredited. Many of their members moved into the environmental movement, bringing with them their eco-Marxism and pro-Sandinista sentiments.

“A lot of those in the peace movement were anti-American and, to an extent, pro-Soviet. By virtue of their anti-Americanism, they tended to sometimes favor the communist approach. A lot of those people, a lot of those social activists, moved into the environmental movement once the peace movement was no longer relevant.” Social activists, he suggests, “are now using the rhetoric of environmentalism to promote other collectivist agendas, such as class struggle — which I personally believe is a legitimate area, but I don’t believe it’s legitimate to mix it up with environmentalism.”

Duh! Even this guy admits what is happening. If you want to know mare about Gorby go to this link Ken Raggio does a bang-up job of chronicling this creep’s rise to power and relentless Communist zeal.


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Now we come to the Jocelyn Elders of energy Lisa Jackson, the current director of the EPA (slthough soon to step down because she believes Obama will support the Keystone Pipeline). Here is the idiocy which she spouts.


During an event with youth environmental leaders at Howard University, Jackson was asked by students about the controversial proposed Keystone Pipeline, she said that “To me, it’s awesome; it’s awesome that we’re having this conversation in this country. This should be a moment where we’re having a big conversation.” She also urged caution on the proposed project saying that “This isn’t a little tiny pipeline; this is a pipeline that cuts our country literally in half.”

Jackson has spoken out against the Senate Joint Resolution 26 (the Murkowski Amendment), which would take away the EPA’s authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions under the Clean Air Act, which was expanded by the 2007 Supreme Court decision in Massachusetts v. Environmental Protection Agency.

Regulations that Senator Lisa Murkowski calls an “economic train-wreck.”[39] In an op-ed in the Huffington Post on the Murkowski Amendment, Jackson said that “now is not the time to take a big step backward, by doubling down on the kinds of energy and environmental policies that keep America addicted to oil.”


Jackson has argued against claims by lobbying groups and members of congress that the EPA is responsible for a “train wreck” of new clean air regulations and the effect of existing EPA regulations on the economy. Jackson said that “Big polluters are lobbying Congress for loopholes to use our air and water as dumping grounds. The result won’t be more jobs; it will be more mercury in our air and water and more health threats to our kids.”

Yeah right! It’s “for the children”.

Why is all of this important to Texas? Texas leads the nation in natural gas production, holding around 23 percent of the nation’s natural gas reserves. Natural gas is primarily methane (CH4) and is considered to be a more environmentally friendly fuel than oil. Methane is a nonreactive hydrocarbon, which means its emissions do not react with sunlight to create smog.


Natural gas is used for heating, generating electricity and making transportation fuel. It is also a raw material found in plastics, medicines, fertilizers and dyes. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, 22 percent of energy consumption in America comes from natural gas.

Natural gas in Texas was first discovered as a by-product of oil. As oil production and exploration increased, gas production began to rise, peaking in 1972 with a total of 9.6 trillion cubic feet produced annually in Texas. Texas has maintained a steady level of natrual gas production with the help of the discovery of major natural gas fields such as Newark, East field in North-Central Texas, the Carthage field in East Texas, the Panhandle, West field in the Anadarko Basin, and the Giddings field in the Gulf Coast Basin. Texas natural gas production levels have also been maintained by an increasing number of production wells, which are now at an all-time high. Today many of the new exploration and production activities in Texas involve natural gas rather than oil.


Most of the natural gas production in the U.S. is concentrated around Texas and the Gulf of Mexico. A study by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), Oil and Gas Journal and World Oil showed that the U.S. contains 3 percent of the world’s total natural gas reserves. Of this 3 percent, nearly half of the production occurs in Texas and Louisiana. The largest onshore natural gas field in Texas is the Barnett Shale field in the Bend Arch-Fort Worth Basin in north central Texas.

The EIA found that between 2004 and 2009 the number of natural gas production plants in Texas decreased (contrary to the national increase) while the average capacity per plant increased. Texas has a total of 163 natural gas production plants with an average of 19.7 billion cubic feet of natural gas produced per day, making it the state with the largest processing capacity in the nation.

Natural gas distributors in Texas include the Texas Gas Service, the Gateway Energy Corporation, and the West Texas Gas, Inc.

Natural gas remains an important contributor to Texas’ economy. In 2006, more than 312,000 Texans (3.1 percent of the state’s workforce) were employed by the oil and natural gas industry. The industry accounts for 14.9 percent ($159.3 billion) of Texas’ gross state product.

This on top of more that can be reached by well fracturing or “Fracking” (which is under attack by guess who…the greenie weenies). Yes folks we are the Saudi Arabia of natural gas now and with the Barnett Shale reserves which stratch from Ft. Worth to Denton we are poised to be even more important.


Hollywood indoctrination (pretension of expertise from morons)

So next time your grandkid or kid comes home from school on Earth Day and wants you to recycle to “save the world”, instead of thinking it’s cute, realize they have been officially indoctrinated.

As always, I’m Pete Moss.

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Want a Free House?

This is an opinion-editorial and the opinions therein may not be reflected by the staff or founders of I Am A Texan, LLC. We accept articles and submissions from all points of view and generally permit them to be posted. If you disagree, please feel free to write a reponse post and send it in to! We are also always seeking guest bloggers. You can send articles to the same email address listed previously. Enjoy the article!


by Steve Field (Guest Contributor to I Am A Texan)


I was in my neighborhood restaurant this morning and was seated behind

a group of jubilant individuals celebrating the coming implementation

of the health care bill. I could not finish my breakfast. This is what


They were a diverse group of several races and both sexes. I heard the

young man exclaim, “Isn’t Obama like Jesus Christ? I mean, after all,

he is healing the sick.”

The young woman enthusiastically proclaimed, “Yeah, and he does it for

free. I cannot believe anyone would think that a free market would

work for health care.”

Another said, ‘The stupid Republicans want us all to starve to death so

they can inherit all of the power. Obama should be made a Saint for

what he did for those of us less fortunate.”

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At this, I had more than enough. I arose from my seat, mustering all

the restraint I could find, and approached their table. “Please excuse

me; may I impose upon you for one moment?”

They smiled and welcomed me to the conversation. I stood at the end of

their table, smiled as best I could and began an experiment.

“I would like to give one of you my house. It will cost you no money,

and I will pay all of the expenses and taxes for as long as you live

there. Anyone interested?”

They looked at each other in astonishment.

“Why would you do something like that?” asked a young man. “There isn’t

anything for free in this world.”

They began to laugh at me, as they did not realize this man had just

made my point.

“I am serious, I will give you my house for free, no money whatsoever.

Anyone interested?”

In unison, a resounding “Hell Yeah” fills the room.

“Since there are too many of you, I will have to make a choice as to

who receives this money-free bargain.”

I noticed an elderly couple was paying attention to the spectacle

unfolding before their eyes, the old man shaking his head in apparent


“I tell you what; I will give it to the one of you most willing to obey

my rules.”

Again, they looked at one another, an expression of bewilderment on

their faces.

The perky young woman asked, “What are the rules?”

I smiled and said, “I don’t know. I have not yet defined them.

However, it is a free home that I offer you.”

They giggled amongst themselves, the youngest of which said, “What an

old coot. He must be crazy to give away his home. Go take your meds,

old man.”

I smiled and leaned into the table a bit further. “I am serious, this

is a legitimate offer.”

They gaped at me for a moment.

“I’ll take it you old fool. Where are the keys?” boasted the youngest

among them.

“Then I presume you accept ALL of my terms then?” I asked.

The elderly couple seemed amused and entertained as they watched from

the privacy of their table. “Oh hell yeah! Where do I sign up?”

I took a napkin and wrote, “I give this man my home, without the burden

of financial obligation, so long as he accepts and abides by the terms

that I shall set forth upon consummation of this transaction.”

I signed it and handed it to the young man who eagerly scratched out

his signature.

“Where are the keys to my new house?” he asked in a mocking tone of


All eyes were upon us as I stepped back from the table, pulling the

keys from pocket and dangling them before the excited new homeowner.

“Now that we have entered into this binding contract, witnessed by all

of your friends, I have decided upon the conditions you are obligated

to adhere from this point forward. You may only live in the house for

one hour a day. You will not use anything inside of the home. You

will obey me without question or resistance. I expect complete loyalty

and admiration for this gift I bestow upon you. You will accept my

commands and wishes with enthusiasm, no matter the nature. Your morals

and principles shall be as mine. You will vote as I do, think as I do

and do it with blind faith. These are my terms. Here are your keys.”

I reached the keys forward and the young man looked at me dumbfounded.

“Are you out of your mind? Who would ever agree to those ridiculous

terms?” the young man appeared irritated.

“You did when you signed this contract before reading it, understanding

it and with the full knowledge that I would provide my conditions only

after you committed to the agreement.”

The elderly man chuckled as his wife tried to restrain him. I was

looking at a now silenced and bewildered group of people.

“You can shove that stupid deal up your a** old man. I want no part of

it!” exclaimed the now infuriated young man.

‘You have committed to the contract, as witnessed by all of your

friends. You cannot get out of the deal unless I agree to it. I do

not intend to let you free now that I have you ensnared. I am the

power you agreed to. I am the one you blindly and without thought

chose to enslave yourself to. In short, I am your Master.”

At this, the table of celebrating individuals became a unified group

against the unfairness of the deal.

After a few moments of unrepeatable comments and slurs, I revealed my

true intent.

“What I did to you is what this administration and congress did to you

with the health care legislation. I easily suckered you in and then

revealed the real cost of the bargain. Your folly was in the belief

that you can have something you did not earn, and for that which you

did not earn, you willingly allowed someone else to think for you.

Your failure to research, study and inform yourself permitted reason to

escape you. You have entered into a trap from which you cannot flee.

Your only chance of freedom is if your new Master gives it to you. A

freedom that is given can also be taken away. Therefore, it is not

freedom at all.”

With that, I tore up the napkin and placed it before the astonished

young man. “This is the nature of your new health care legislation.”

I turned away to leave these few in thought and contemplation — and

was surprised by applause.


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The elderly gentleman, who was clearly entertained, shook my hand

enthusiastically and said, “Thank you, Sir. These kids don’t understand

Liberty .”

He refused to allow me to pay my bill as he said, “You earned this

one. It is an honor to pick up the tab.”

I shook his hand in thanks, leaving the restaurant somewhat humbled and

sensing a glimmer of hope for my beloved country.

Remember, four boxes keep us free: the soap box, the ballot box, the

jury box, and the cartridge box.

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And They Vote!

Author Unknown



Everyone should start carrying $2 bills!


I think we need to quit saving our $2 bills and bring them out in public.

The younger generation doesn’t even know they exist!


On my way home from work, I stopped at Taco Bell for a quick bite to eat.

I have a $50 bill and a $2 bill. I figure with the $2 bill, I can get something to eat and not have to worry about irritating anyone for trying to break a $50 bill.

Me: ‘Hi, I’d like one seven-layer burrito please, to go.’ Server: ‘That’ll be $1.04. Eat in?’
Me: ‘No, it’s to go.’ At this point, I open my billfold and hand him the $2 bill. He looks at it kind of funny.
Server: ‘Uh, hang on a sec, I’ll be right back.’ He goes to talk to his manager, who is still within my earshot.

The following conversation occurs between the two of them:

Server: ‘Hey, you ever see a $2 bill?’
Manager: ‘No. A what?’
Server: ‘A $2 bill. This guy just gave it to me…’
Manager: ‘Ask for something else. There’s no such thing as a $2 bill.’
Server: ‘Yeah, thought so.’

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He comes back to me and says, ‘We don’t take these.

Do you have anything else?’
Me: ‘Just this fifty. You don’t take $2 bills? Why?
Server: ‘I don’t know.’
Me: ‘See here where it says legal tender?’
Server: ‘Yeah.’
Me: ‘So, why won’t you take it?’
Server: ‘Well, hang on a sec.’

He goes back to his manager, who has been watching me like I’m a shoplifter, and says to him, ‘He says I have to take it.’

Manager: ‘Doesn’t he have anything else?’
Server: ‘Yeah, a fifty. I’ll get it and you can open the safe and get change.
Manager: ‘I’m not opening the safe with him in here.’
Server: ‘What should I do?’
Manager: ‘Tell him to come back later when he has real money.’
Server: ‘I can’t tell him that! You tell him.’
Manager: ‘Just tell him.’
Server: ‘No way! This is weird. I’m going in back.

The manager approaches me and says, ‘I’m sorry, but we don’t take big bills this time of night.’

Me: ‘It’s only seven o’clock! Well then, here’s a two dollar bill.’
Manager: ‘We don’t take those, either.’
Me: ‘Why not?’
Manager: ‘I think you know why.’
Me: ‘No really, tell me why.’
Manager ‘Please leave before I call mall security.’
Me: ‘Excuse me?’
Manager: ‘Please leave before I call mall security.’
Me: ‘What on earth for?’
Manager: ‘Please, sir..’
Me: ‘Uh, go ahead, call them.’
Manager: ‘Would you please just leave?’
Me: ‘No.’
Manager: ‘Fine — have it your way then.’
Me: ‘Hey, that’s Burger King, isn’t it?’

At this point, he backs away from me and calls mall security on the phone around the corner. I have two people staring at me from the dining area, and I begin laughing out loud, just for effect.

A few minutes later this 45-year-oldish guy comes in.

Guard: ‘Yeah, Mike, what’s up?’
Manager (whispering): ‘This guy is trying to give me some (pause) funny money.’
Guard: ‘No kidding! What?’
Manager: ‘Get this. A two dollar bill.’
Guard (incredulous): ‘Why would a guy fake a two dollar bill?’
Manager: ‘I don’t know. He’s kinda weird. He says the only other thing he has is a fifty.’
Guard: ‘Oh, so the fifty’s fake!’
Manager: ‘No, the two dollar bill is.’
Guard: ‘Why would he fake a two dollar bill?’
Manager : ‘I don’t know! Can you talk to him, and get him out of here?’
Guard: ‘Yeah.’

Security Guard walks over to me and……

Guard: ‘Mike here tells me you have some fake bills you’re trying to use.’
Me: ‘Uh, no.’
Guard: ‘Lemme see ’em.’
Me: ‘Why?’
Guard: ‘Do you want me to get the cops in here?’

At this point I’m ready to say, ‘Sure, please!’ but I want to eat, so I say, ‘I’m just trying to buy a burrito and pay for it with this two dollar bill. I put the bill up near his face, and he flinches like I’m taking a swing at him. He takes the bill turns it over a few times in his hands, and he says,

Guard: ‘Hey, Mike, what’s wrong with this bill?’
Manager: ‘It’s fake.’
Guard: ‘It doesn’t look fake to me.’
Manager: ‘But it’s a two dollar bill.’
Guard: ‘Yeah? ‘
Manager: ‘Well, there’s no such thing, is there?’

The security guard and I both look at him like he’s an idiot and it dawns on the guy that he has no clue and is an idiot. So, it turns out that my burrito was free, and he threw in a small drink and some of those cinnamon thingies, too.

Made me want to get a whole stack of two dollar bills just to see what happens when I try to buy stuff.

Just think…

those two will be voting soon!!?!


Too late, we already have a nation full of them.



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Saint of the Burning Heart (Chapter 14 – Sneak Peak)

by Texas author Julia Robb


Dañiel believed pain from his weekly crawl went in cycles. When he first dropped to his knees on St. Joseph’s stone floor and began walking forward, from the heavy wooden doors to the altar, the pain first spread to lacerated skin, then to bruised bone and abused ligaments, leaping up his body like an electric charge until even his scalp quivered.


After progressing ten feet, though, the pain eased and was replaced by an ecstasy so overwhelming it was almost sexual; he crawled for this release, for the vague justification–he shed blood, like the martyrs–for the expiation, he was sorry, sorry, sorry, help me help me. The stained glass windows and smell of candle wax bathed his soul with heavenly balm, Mary’s face, no longer made of stone, melted with tenderness, just for him.

Saintliness lasted ten minutes, then he hurt so badly he sweated like a cold window in a hot house, and was in so much agony he had no choice but to push himself up from the floor and put himself to sleep for the next fourteen hours.


Click here for a quick look inside the book “Saint of the Burning Heart”

Occasionally, Dañiel vowed to stop crawling; it was an obsession, not a Godly act, he told himself–his once true spiritual insight. But when his knees hurt enough, he did not crave more sinister activities.

Once he was caught. He walked into the church and found a teenage boy crawling up the aisle on his knees. Dañiel first thought the boy was an apparition meant to humiliate him, but when he realized he was seeing a real person he jerked the boy up and lectured him: God does not want your pain, he said, knowing, with a great deal of satisfaction, he was telling the boy the truth, doing his priestly duty, exactly as he was, for once, supposed to do.

The teen fled the church and Dañiel, helpless to stop himself, crumpled to his knees and began crawling himself. After punishing himself for three long feet, the same teenager opened the church doors and stared at the priest, amazed. Dañiel tried to concoct a lie, something to explain himself, but was so ashamed that after one startled look at the boy, he could not drag his eyes from the floor.

On this particular day, Dañiel was reluctant to make his weekly pilgrimage down the aisle. He was afraid someone who had been to the funeral mass earlier in the week would appear at the church, to pray and light candles for Doña Paulita’s soul.

As the familiar darkness began its invasion and he knew he would have to do what he dreaded doing, what he longed to do: Find his car keys and flee to his pit of forgetfulness.

Although Daniel habitually hid his car keys from himself, throwing them to the top shelf in the rectory office, or hurling them into the backyard, into tall grass, it did him no good. When he had to leave he always found the keys and fled town as if chased by the hound of heaven.


Click here for a quick look inside the book “Saint of the Burning Heart”

This day was no different. The priest beat his way through the weeds, to the direct spot where he had thrown the keys and his heart did not stop racing until he found himself near the Mexican border, a hundred and twenty miles away. Something about the gently rolling land soothed him. It was covered with almost purple-looking desert growth rolling from horizon to horizon, punctuated with white billows of cloud.

By the time he got to the tiny border town he was almost giddy from freedom and anticipation. It did not matter the American side of the river was almost deserted, as if the sun had pounded the town into sick submission. He drove over the bridge spanning a green river winding like a skinny snake through the sun-struck land–called on one side Río Grande del Norte, big river of the north, and on the other Río Bravo del Norte, wild river of the north–like something, or someone, pursued him.

Nobody stopped him or asked a question. American customs agents waved him on, Mexican border guards, in their muddy brown uniforms, waved him on. Pasar, pasar.

American border guards tore cars apart when they left Mexico, searching for drugs or other contraband. But they never stopped people or vehicles crossing into Mexico because nobody took anything worth having into the land of destitution; buildings decayed south of the border, signs hung over the streets like vultures, ranchero music blared from outdoor speakers attached to buildings standing on half-paved streets. Vendors stood patiently in the sun by their fly-crawling carts and sold melons, pastry-oozing pumpkin crusted with brown sugar, squatted patiently by tiny braziers, tended grilled meat which filled the streets with fragrance and wood smoke.

Supermercado, the signs read, Floreria de Moda, Almacén Acapulco, Hamburguesas Deliciosas, La Casa de la Música.

A bust of Francisco Madero stared stoically into the Mexican sun in the palm-filled plaza, next to the stone benches and dry fountain. Two blocks later Dañiel parked at the unpainted two-story wooden building with shutters askew on the second level, one which leaned, as if in a high wind. The sign over the front door said Paris Bar and Grill and the open door yawned at him like the gates of hell.

Rancid garbage slapped Dañiel in the face when he walked in, and he froze in shock and confusion when he remembered he had not taken off his white priest’s collar.

After frantically searching the room for witnesses, and spotting one, he snatched the collar off and stuffed it in his pocket. The bartender, a slight man with longish greasy hair, looked down, rearranging bottles under the bar. Without glancing up or changing his expression, the bartender put his hand over the wooden counter and snapped his fingers. Dañiel hesitated in the murky light. This was his last chance to stop. He couldn’t stop.

Breathing faster, Dañiel’s heart pounded. He took a twenty-dollar bill and slapped it in the other man’s palm and the bartender stuffed the money in his shirt pocket, reached under the counter and slammed a bottle of tequila and a room key on the bar never acknowledging his customer.

“Priest,” the bartender said, stuffing the word with disdain.


There’s nothing better than curling up with a good book, and Saint of the Burning Heart is definitely a good book.
But imagine yourself curling up with Saint of the Burning Heart ALONG WITH the ambiance of a Hill Country Candle like “Amber Romance” pictured above.
Could life get better than that?
I certainly doubt it.
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This Ain't Rocket Science You Know



Click here for more from Big Al

Lately I have been on a lot of forums reading what people go through to cook a Brisket or Pork Butt.

OMG, I learned that from my daughter and that texting crud all of them do! If some of these old ranch cooks, old time cookers and God rest his soul, my Dad, ever read some of this stuff on how to cook these pieces of meat, they would not just roll over in their graves. They would come out of them and throttle these people! I will tell you the only 2 things you have to remember about cooking these 2 pieces of meat. Low and slow and, what no baby girl, that means low temperature, not a cooker that’s low to the ground. Ain’t daughters cute! I cook both Brisket and Pork Butt at 225F and use the 1 pound per hour rule. That means a 10lb piece of meat will take 10hrs. I will even leave it on another thirty minutes at end for good measure. The other is keep the lid shut! Are you afraid somebody is going to steal it? Listen, anybody that will sneak up and grab a chunk of meat of a hot grill, with their bare hands, and run away with it, then you better let them have it – they are way to tough for me to fool with! I have read in these forums and such, of people that say cook it for 4 hrs, then take it off, wrap in foil, stick it in an Ice chest for 2 hrs, take it and put it back on for 4 hrs, then take it off again and stick in the oven! Geez I am tired just talking about it. Sure, wrap it in foil when you take it off and leave it for 30 minutes to an hour but don’t treat it like some kind Football or basketball that needs to be thrown around.


Remember… one rule. LOW AND SLOW. (And along with Big Al’s Texas Rubs, you’ll always serve the best barbecue this side of heaven. Click the photo above for information on my heavenly rubs!)

Many cooks use foil at the end in competition — that is called using a Texas crutch. Most old timers will say if you use the crutch you don’t know how to cook. I will wrap it up at the end just so it retains its moisture. I always buy Pork Butt with the bone in. I believe it gives better flavor to the meat. In Brisket I look for the brisket with a good fat layer on it, I know I am paying for the fat but I don’t mind because it is the fat that helps it be tender. Oh, cook with the fat cap up. I want that fat to moisten the meat not the grill grates. I ain’t never had a grill grate that was tender. Just cook it low and slow and leave it alone. Hey that rhymes, I am a poet and don’t know it. I just crack myself up.


Here endeth the lesson.

Big Al

Enjoy grilling!

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Texas Nationalism

By: Jesse Newberry


Jesse Newberry and his family

Patriotism is the love and support for one’s nation. Nationalism takes patriotism to a deeper level where a person completely identifies themselves with their homeland. I will not question President Obama’s patriotism. However, he tells us he does not believe in American exceptionalism and continues to lead us down the pit of globalism. Therefore, President Obama does not fit the definition of a nationalist.

Most Texans fit the definition of a “Texas Nationalist.” In our core we hold a unique sense of pride about our homeland. Texans are proud of our unique history from a small group of Texas patriots procuring independence for our Republic to where we are today. Texans get “uppity” when someone talks bad about Texas. We are tickled to hear that some kid in Africa can readily sketch a drawing of Texas but has no clue what an “Iowan” is. Many of us consider ourselves “Texans” before “Americans.” Our pride runs from the oil filled deserts to the Piney Woods and from our gulf shore refineries to “Amarillo by Morning.” We find it amusing when an “outsider” complains how they have driven all day and still there is no end in sight to Texas.

Texans have a unique appreciation for freedom. We offer a large bulk of volunteers to the U. S. military and feel we deserve better than what we get from the federal government. When the topic of independence arises we hear the retort “How could Texas survive on its own”. The reply is simple, “Very easily. How can Texas continue to survive being a member of a dying body?” Texas is vastly under-appreciated by her fellow states. It seems others either love us or hate us. Recently I read an observation that an outpouring over Texas “arrogance” ranged from “send in troops to crush their spirits” to “let them go, good riddance.” But not once did anyone say, “We are all Americans.” They refuse to acknowledge Texas’ contributions. Due to our productivity and fairly sound business policies, Texas is the “life support machine” to states who practice irresponsible fiscal behavior. They fail to realize that they need Texas; Texas does not need them. As the cynic says, “a friend in need is a friend we don’t need.”

The world’s history is full of massive empires gone by. As they collapsed, their citizens carved out niches of land and said “this is our home.” The trend continues today. Most recently the people of Sudan had a falling out and their people voted on separation. South Sudan was created. The people (and even their government) basically agreed “we aint mad. We just want to determine our own destiny.” And so they have embarked into autonomy in a bloodless election.

Perhaps you can balance a pyramid on its head, but it will not be long before it blows over. And so it is with governments; when the government becomes bigger than its base, it is only a matter of time before the winds of change tip the balance and the entire system is altered forever.

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People of Texas are tired of going to elections and having to decide who is the least worst candidate. Because of the bloat of Washington D. C. where they have surrounded themselves with so much red tape that improvement is impossible and freedoms are lessened, I joined the Texas Nationalist Movement. Texas can do better. Texas deserves better.

John Steinbeck once noted that “Texas is a nation in every sense of the word.” A famous Texan once said, “Texas is the finest portion of the globe that has ever blessed my vision.” That was Sam Houston in 1833, before they were faced with the War of Independence. And it is still true today. He later said, “Texas will again lift its head among the nations. It ought to do so, for no country upon the globe can compare with it in natural advantages.”

These are words that help source the “Texas Nationalist” pride. We are the Lone Star. We hold dear our constitution which says in Article 1, Section 2: “All political power is inherent in the people ….. they have at all times the inalienable right to alter, reform or abolish their government in such manner as they may think expedient.”

*Jesse Newberry, 38, is a lifelong Texas citizen, and father of five, and proud husband. Jesse spent over eight years in the funeral service and is now involved in the merchandise relocation industry.

For more about the Texas Nationalist Movement, click here.

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