Dallas Is Better Than Houston [February 1978]

"Good ol' boys still make it in Dallas. They catch the bus in from Winnsboro and come looking for the foot of the ladder. Not in Houston. You don't see good ol' boys on the elevators of Shell Plaza."

TRY TO REMEMBER, BILL, Hell and Houston both begin with a h.

—letter from a 19th-century visitor

I wish I’d said it first, but I can’t say it any better. It still begins with a h. Houston today is a dozen cities, and you couldn’t give me any of them if it meant I had to live there. Dallas may have a few drawbacks, but none that the Bayou City can’t top.

First things first: the climate. Dallas has three seasons: summer, winter, and two weeks of fall, but Houston has only two: the beginning of summer, and the end. Houston humidity doesn’t just wilt your shirt, it eats away your courage. Smog is constant and ubiquitous, but Houston’s proud of it. It holds to the conceit that pollution is a sign of

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