This week I’m addressing a little bit of everything – from taking our oldest grandson to his first Aggie football game, and the deaths of a longtime former employee and a friend who offered up some social media tips in the wake of Hurricane Harvey, to tiny houses on wheels.
This past Saturday we were in Frisco (Dallas area) and celebrated the birthdays of our oldest daughter, son-in-law, and oldest grandson. Call it a group birthday hug, in that their presents from us were tickets to the Aggie/Razorback game at Jerry World (AT&T Stadium).
I found that one of the big benefits to taking a five-year-old boy to a football game is he can yell all he wants, and it’s normal.
He loves to yell, “Gig ‘Em Aggies”, and, unfortunately, took particular joy in the “Beat the Hell out of Arkansas” yell.
It was sort of hard for the parents to tell him “hell” is a potty word, when everyone was saying it!
My preferred method of watching a college football game is to be on the sidelines, or relaxing in my recliner, but there’s something to be said about attending a game with family.
There aren’t a lot of memories made sitting in a recliner!
Deaths of friends
Because we were in Dallas I was unable to attend the memorial service for Kelly Gibson. She was my advertising manager for many years before being promoted to general manager. She served well this newspaper and her clientele during her 20-year career. She was working at Rockport Printing at the time of her untimely death.
I heard from a number of her close friends the memorial service was emotional, with many nice things said about her.
I wish my wife and I could have made it to her memorial service. Not only was she a friend and asset to this newspaper, she was a top volunteer at the chamber through the Bay Blazers.
Rest in peace Kelly. You no longer have to suffer.
I, along with many of you, also learned of the tragic death of Glenn Gomez last Thursday.
He had just wrapped up chairing the HummerBird Celebration the weekend before, but for unknown reasons, chose to take his own life while sitting in his pickup truck at a nature site on the Highway 35 Bypass.
I’ll never forget his enthusiasm helping others in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, including helping me with social media tips.
Too many people have taken their own life since Hurricane Harvey.
In conversations with local law enforcement officials and justices of the peace, it appears the number of suicides isn’t abnormal, or exceptionally high since the storm, but most officials have said, from what they understand, many of the suicides since Harvey have been storm-related.
All our lives have changed in some way since Harvey slammed our shores. If one was not affected, he or she is not human.
I encourage everyone, even after two years, to reach out to friends and neighbors who may be acting differently than they did before.
And, maybe even more important, I encourage anyone who is having a rough time with anything, to reach out to someone.
Call a friend, talk to your clergy, or consider making a call to one of the following:
• The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: Services are available anytime at 800-273-TALK (8255), 888-628-9454 for Spanish speakers or 800-799-4889 for people who are deaf or hard of hearing. You can also chat with a counselor at www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org.
• The Crisis Text Line: Text “HOME” to 741741 for round-the-clock support.
• Local mental health resources: Texas Health and Human Services lists those in your area at https://hhs.texas.gov/services/mental-health-substance-use/mental-health-crisis-services.
At last week’s Rockport City Council meeting the owner of Teensy Castles made a presentation about his product – tiny homes on wheels.
They’re not made for driving down the highway mile after mile, like an RV, but they are an alternative to tiny homes, which are growing in popularity.
Unfortunately, we continue to have an affordable housing issue in Aransas County, and it appears it will still be a while before many of our apartments and condominiums are available.
Hurricane Harvey didn’t do us any favors when it comes to rebuilding affordable housing at market rates, but we might get there some day. The brutal truth is most affordable housing was seriously damaged or destroyed by Harvey and it can’t be rebuilt under new building codes and rented at pre-Harvey rates.
I’m not sure where one of the Teensy Castles could be located, other than in an RV Park or in the unincorporated areas of the county, but it was still interesting to look inside one.
Just Google Teensy Castle if you interested in what they offer.
The company’s Facebook page says, “Teensy Castles Custom Tiny Home Builders provides affordable tiny houses for the off-grid lifestyle in Texas!”
I think that cover it.
Until next week, have a good week.
Mike Probst can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.