Daily Newspaper and for Reeves County Trans Pecos, Big Bend of West Texas
Friday, December 12, 1997
By Mac McKinnon
Using technology can be wonderful
Technology is wonderful - at times. At other times it is
The Internet is a tremendous source of information and
entertainment. We've had our page on the Internet for almost
1 1/2 years and it has grown in popularity since that time.
We are now getting more than 1,000 hits (people who go to
the page) per day, seven days a week. And that number is
We - mainly Webmaster Peggy McCracken - are trying to make
it a page - actually far more than one page - that offers
all kinds of information about our area, particularly for
tourism. And apparently that effort is working and being
viewed by many people all over the world judging by the
e-mail we receive which is extensive every day.
We don't offer the complete Pecos Enterprise online but much
of it is there as well as other information that is not in
the newspaper so we have two different packages.
One of the biggest attractions for our page for the public
as well as our own staff is the archives. Almost all of our
local articles during the past 1 1/2 years is on the
archives and there is a search engine to find items of
interest. We use these archives to do research on the
background of items we've reported on in the past.
When we figure out how to do it at a reasonable cost, we'll
put all of the past Pecos Enterprise articles going back 110
years on the web so that they can be accessed by the public.
Advertising is a big part of the Internet as well as the
newspaper as many people are shopping the Internet and we're
set up to help buyers and sellers do just that.
Part of this technology is e-mail (electronic) that is
better and close to as fast as faxes with better quality,
plus you can call out what you don't want. You can do this
with fax programs on computers but we didn't have a lot of
luck with that process (another frustration).
In order to cut down on paper coming in the office, I had
the bright idea that we could get all our syndicated
materials (columns, comics, astrology, crossword, etc.) by
e-mail. We take certain packages of which we use less than
half and the result is we are covered up by paper.
Well, what appeared to be a good idea led to a lot of
problems as it takes hours and hours to download - empty -
the e-mail box with all the material that is sent. That
resulted in a bottleneck, tying up our internet operations
and the loss of some materials when the e-mail connection
was severed by an automatic function because of length of
The result was we didn't have the astrology or crossword for
several days and that upset many readers. We've remedied
that situation now. Sorry about that problem but the
intentions were good.
Most readers I'm sure have noticed the color photographs
we're using from time to time. That's made possible by
technology we now have - computers that do color
separations. We could have done it previously and have but
it was very expensive as we had to take photos to a company
that specialized in making negative separations. That took
time and was expensive.
It still isn't cheap to use color as there is some waste in
getting the color adjusted right plus color ink is more
expensive than black but we - and apparently you the reader
- believe it is worthwhile.
Thanks to a very good, hard working staff, our efforts have
come out looking good and I appreciate their work to help
make use of the technology we have available.
Of course, that same technology has caused us problems as we
try to cut costs to keep expenses down so our black and
white pictures are not as good as they once were. Some
haven't been very good quite honestly at all but we're
working at it so please be patient.
As I noted, technology is wonderful but it can also be a
Editor's Note: Mac McKinnon is the Editor and Publisher of the Pecos
Enterprise whose column appears each Friday. He can be
e-mailed at: email@example.com.
Investigation reveals alcohol sold to minors
To The Editor:
This letter is in regard to the letter from Concerned
Retailer (Pecos Enterprise 12-06-97).
I'm not talking about the times minors get winos, junkies,
or anyone else to buy alcohol for them.
According to the article in the Pecos Enterprise, which is
where I'm getting my information, there was no attempt to
deceive or fraud anyone. A minor, who was used in this
investigation, used his own driver's license. In some cases
he was asked for I.D. and sold alcohol after showing it.
Minors in Pecos don't have to pay winos, junkies or anyone
else to buy alcohol for them. They are perfectly able to get
The article stated that the minor tried to purchase alcohol
at 19 different businesses. He was successful at 12. That
means that 7 businesses wouldn't sell to him. I applaud
those 7 businesses.
However, Mr. Concerned Retailer, you can get down off your
high horse of pretending to be the innocent victim.
As I stated in my first letter, I'm fully aware that the
minors buying the alcohol are not innocent. But neither is
the retailer selling it to them.
I'm not the only one in Pecos concerned about alcohol being
sold to minors.
Name withheld by Request
Christmas lights make Pecos look cheerier
Pecos is all aglow for Christmas and doesn't it look great!
In addition to the many homeowners who go all out every year
to decorate, the county courthouse is now lighted and street
decorations have been refurbished and added to in order to
make decorations more extensive. They even look good during
the daytime. And the courthouse really looks great at night.
The street decorations are sponsored by the Pecos Chamber of
Commerce which in conjunction with the Downtown Pecos Lions
Club, conducted a fund raising campaign to add to the lights.
More than $9,000 was donated by many generous local
individuals and businesses that helped refurbish many old
decorations. In past years, only slightly more than 40
street decorations were put up but this year there are 114.
Now, the chamber wants to extend the fund raising campaign
in order to be able to put up even more lights.
Lights are needed to go all the way to the Interstate on
Highway 285 as well as further up 3rd street and Eddy. In
addition it is hoped the chamber can find someone to build
the metal frames and then wrap them with lights and garland
as it is much less expensive than buying all new fixtures.
If you are interested in helping build the frames or making
a donation, please contact the Chamber office.
Congratulations to everyone involved from the county to the
chamber to the Lions Club and all those who contributed for
making our town really take on the Christmas spirit.
Book great for Christmas gift
How many people rememeber books about Black Beauty,
Strawberry Roan and other horses out of legend?
There are many other true stories about horses and their
lives over the years. Now, there is another one that should
take its place among the legends.
This one is about "Old Black," also the name of the book by
Doug Briggs, published by Beverly Publishing Co., Inc. It
comes in hardback with 400 pages and lavisly illustrated,
costing $24.95 at your favorite book store.
It's a book for all ages with Texas roots.
Old Black is a quarter horse. At 18, he's the world
calf-roping champion. When his master becomes gravely ill,
the horse begins a new career as young Jim Bradley's mount
in youth shows. Like latecomers to thE cast of a school
play, Jim first sees himself and Old black as mere bit
players, which is the way some contestants see them. But Old
Black is a savvy old pro who's been in mortal combat with
the clock all his life, and he has bigger ideas.
He's no longer the flyer he once was, but the gritty old
champion makes up for his waning speed with cunning and
determination. Soon he and Jim are beating opponents who had
ridiculed Old Black's funny way of running.
It is not in an arena, however, that Jim and Old Black take
on their biggest challenge but during a bloody,
horror-filled afternoon at the deserted old site of Klankes
Mill. They triumph in this battle, too, even though it
almost costs Old Black his life.
Old Black territory is south-central Texas and Briggs'
narrative style strongly reflects his Texas roots. The book
even comes complete with a cowboy bandana and how a bandana
can be used.
It is recommended reading and will make an excellent
Christmas gift for those who love horses, young or old and
anywhere in between.
Mac McKinnon, Publisher
Peggy McCracken, Webmaster
Division of Buckner News Alliance, Inc.
324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 915-445-5475, FAX 915-445-4321
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Copyright 1997 by Pecos Enterprise