In the last few years, since gas compressor stations arrived in the Denton County town of DISH, Jim Caplinger, 61, has developed a nervous disorder. He’s anxious much of the time, he said, and finds himself constantly tapping his fingers or feet – “something I never did before.” So when a recent study showed more than a dozen toxins in the air in DISH near those compressor stations (“Sacrificed to Shale,” Oct. 14, 2009), Caplinger decided to add a toxicology test to his twice-a-year health checkup. The results showed he has a pretty high level of carbon disulfide in his system, something that might be at the root of his anxiety and toe-tapping.

His wife also got tested and is expecting to get results within the week. And he’s also having his well water tested.

Caplinger is not making any claim about where he picked up the carbon disulfide. “I worked with heavy machinery my whole life, so I’m not discounting that,” he said. “But then I’ve been in an office most of the last five years and not around those machines and that exhaust. I guess I’ll just wait ’til my wife’s tests come back and the well water test, and we’ll try to narrow down the cause based on those results.”


But DISH Mayor Calvin Tillman would prefer not to wait until something serious happens. He’d like to see all the 180 or so people in his small town get tested. “The problem is that some insurance policies don’t pay for those tests, and then a lot of people don’t have insurance anyway,” he said. Based on what Caplinger has been told, the tests could cost $600 to $700 per person.

So Tillman is hoping is that someone out in Readerland might know a lab that would offer a whole-town discount to test everybody. “It just seems that every time we turn around up here there’s more bad news. And I’d like to find out if we’re all being poisoned or not.”

Stone Un-hinged

Holes in the roofs at Texas Stadium and the new Dallas Cowboys stadium were supposed to allow God to watch His favorite team. But some people are now worried that His gaze will be blinded by a supposedly demonic shrine known as Caelum Moor.

The majestic and gorgeous sculpture, reminiscent of Stonehenge, was originally installed in a business park in south Arlington 23 years ago. That development went bust during the savings-and-loan crisis, and the property owner donated the sculpture to the city.

Spineless city officials cratered after a group of religious fanatics with too much time on their hands and religious fervor in their wee brains complained that the sculpture was attracting Wiccan religious ceremonies, something that was never really proven but sounded ominous enough to instill fear in politicians’ minds.

Arlington stored the 540 tons of pink granite stones, some stretching three stories tall, out of sight for years but has now resurrected them near Cowboys stadium. Naturally, the fanatics are back, such as Stephenville Pastor Michael Tummillo, who said on his web site that the “occultic landmark” will create a “demonic backlash.”

The Cowboys, who haven’t won a playoff game since 1996, could probably stand to strike a deal with the devil. But Cowboys owner Jerry Jones will have to contact Satan directly because there is nothing satanic about Caelum Moor, and the city’s entertainment district is fortunate to have such an awe-inspiring sculpture.