January 12, 2007
Sam Houston once said, “You can’t have a big week without a new web site.”At least, I think it was Sam Houston. Maybe it was Sam Webb, inventor of the “Webb sight”, a failed invention that was meant to clean the morning “sleep” from your eyes with a small, very sharp, metal tool. Sadly, the little booger removed more than eye boogers, resulting in great pain and significant corneal damage. It also had absolutely nothing to do with the internet.In any event, you’ve probably noticed that I’ve changed some things around here on the Watson Wire. It’s a small reflection of how exciting and rewarding the last few days have been. I’ve now joined a legislative tradition that stretches back to Texas’ earliest days. I moved into a grand pink building that’s been pretty inspiring since the first time I saw it. And I got to celebrate with so many friends and family members — so many of you — for what was, in the truest and most hopeful sense, the beginning of a new chapter in our lives.Which leads us to our new web site. We’ve pretty much overhauled kirkwatson.com. And, it looks sharp, if I do say so myself. The Watson Wire archives are easier to get to and get around. We’ve got new ways and old ways to tell you about what’s going on in Texas. And we’re starting a new feature, called “Interesting Reading,” where I’ll post a link to an article or report or academic paper or book — it could be anything — that I want to share with you. It may be something I read and agreed with. It may be something I just enjoyed. It may be something I found more provocative than correct. As I said, it will hopefully be “Interesting Reading”.But beyond all that, I hope you’ll help us. The truth is, lots of politicians don’t really know much about the Internet. Even if they manage to type “Google” into a box, they have no more of an idea about what to do with a web site than a chipmunk has about a table saw.Arguably, I fall into the chipmunk category. But, I think I know that this represents an unparalleled way for you and me to communicate about our state — both the strengths that make us proud, and the challenges that should sober us up.So we’re going to change things around at kirkwatson.com— occasionally, we’ll change ’em around a bunch — as we look for new ways to stay in touch with you.And I hope you’ll keep an eye on things, tell us what you think, and give us ideas about how to do things better. This web site is yours as much as it is mine. Let’s have some fun with it.
I took the oath on Tuesday on the Senate Floor. Seated at my desk were Liz, Preston, Cooper, and my brother Kyle. (For those who followed my blog when I traveled across Russia last summer, you’ll remember my brother, who’s such a good friend to me.) There was a little media coverage of my first day.Our office is in the Extension, which is all underground and south of the historic, original Capitol building. The Extension was finished in 1993, and it is one of the most impressive efforts I’ve ever seen. For me to get to the Senate Floor, I take a pretty good hike to the old building and then walk up from the basement to the second floor. I’ve vowed to not use an elevator in the Capitol during the session. That’s not because I’m a chipmunk when it comes to elevator technology, too. It’s that I’m going to use the stairs for some additional exercise.So, if you see me on an elevator, offer me a cookie or lemon bar or some pizza. Because, I’m not doing what I should be doing, and I might as well go crazy.Liz did a great job introducing me at the Senate Ladies Club dinner the night before the session started. I must say it was not the most flattering introduction I’ve ever received. She let everyone know that we’ve known each other since elementary school, which is true. She also told that distinguished crowd that we started dating when I was a mere freshman in high school. Again, a true statement. She was candid in telling folks that she turned me down the first time I asked her out. She also disclosed that it was because I was too short. She later pointed out that, when we started dating, we had to double-date because I couldn’t drive. Of course, it was because I was too young. But, she said it was because my feet didn’t reach the pedals. For the record, I categorically deny that.But, I suppose senators need to be humbled every now and then.All in all, this has been a great week. Lots of fun. The pomp and ceremony isn’t quite over. Next Tuesday is the inaugural of the Governor and Lt. Governor. But, everyone is also getting down to work. We are drafting a number of bills that I’ll report on soon. For this first week, though, it’s pretty cool to soak some of this in and enjoy the moment.Thanks a ton. Now, Cowabunga — go surfing.