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Executive Editor Katy Vine joined the editorial staff of Texas Monthly in 1997 and became a staff writer in 2002. She has written dozens of features on a range of topics including rocket scientist Franklin Chang Díaz, hip-hop legend Bun B, barbecue pit masters, cult leader Warren Jeffs, refugees in Amarillo, dirty cops in McAllen, the moon landing, the Kilgore Rangerettes, bass fishing, a three-person family circus, chess prodigies, and an accountant who embezzled $17 million from a fruitcake company. Her stories have been anthologized in Best American Sports Writing and Best Food Writing. Her feature story about a West Texas sting operation was the inspiration for the 2012 television series The Client List.

Articles by Katy Vine

Market Days

Nov 1, 2002 By Katy Vine

ATTENTION, SHOPPERS No doubt, holiday consumers who turn a sickly green upon hearing the word “mall” will search desperately this month for alternatives to the slew of chain stores. Some people will test their artistic capacities by creating their offerings; some will purchase presents online. Still others—thousands, we are told—will…

Grand Opening

Nov 1, 2002 By Katy Vine

THE HARD CELL Beaumont has the Texas Energy Museum and Kingsville has the King Ranch Museum. Likewise, Huntsville promotes its industry—incarceration—with the Texas Prison Museum. Since 1989 museum visitors have surveyed exhibits dedicated to prison art, contraband, and capital punishment, gawking at the decommissioned electric chair Old Sparky along the…


Sep 30, 2002 By Katy Vine

COMING ATTRACTIONS For thirty years El Pasoan Willie Varela has been best known for his avant-garde super 8 films. This month, however, the 52-year-old debuts his other artistic undertakings. On October 31 the El Paso Museum of Art and the UT-El Paso Fox Fine Arts Center open a two-part exhibit,…


Aug 31, 2002 By Katy Vine

WORD FOR WORD Ogden Nash once wrote, “I’m so full/Of Holy Texas/I’ll be hallowed ground/When they annex us.” Nash never lived in Texas, but his papers are permanent residents at the Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center at UT-Austin. You can examine the comic poet’s original manuscripts, letters, drawings, and photographs…

Flores Family Circus
Family Circus

Jul 31, 2002 By Katy Vine

Children of all ages! Step right up and get to know a South Texas clan whose nomadic way of life is a link to the past.

On Screen

Jul 31, 2002 By Katy Vine

THE GREAT INDOORS Kids’ late-summer doldrums usually leave them particularly restless. They become prone to manic behavior—fads flourish, fixations blossom, expectations intensify. But as any well-informed individual between the ages of five and ten knows, nothing is more anticipated this month than the premiere of Spy Kids 2: The Island…

For the Family

Jun 30, 2002 By Katy Vine

LORDS OF THE RINGS Remarkably, you’ll be able to witness a ringmaster get eaten by a lion this month. M. C. Bot, a mechanical master of ceremonies, will meet his fate via mechanical lion Max Fang in the Space Center Houston’s latest exhibit, “Robot Circus,” which features a choreographed catastrophic…

Latino Culture

May 31, 2002 By Katy Vine

Having Their Say The 2000 U.S. census indicated that Hispanics make up 12.5 percent of the population, yet Hispanics make up only 2 percent of prime-time television characters, with stories spotlighting contemporary Mexican American families and neighborhoods remaining dreadfully few and far between. More and more, though, Texas audiences are…

Fine Art

Apr 30, 2002 By Katy Vine

The Awakening Unlike Houston, whose thriving art market allows its artists to live in the Bayou City and sell globally, Austin has always had a tough time cultivating a reputation with dealers as a serious visual-art town. Before the high-tech economic boom, Austin artists complained that nobody bought art in…

Tune In

Apr 1, 2002 By Katy Vine

Independents’ Day In 1982 John Kunz opened the doors to a 1,200-square-foot music store on Lamar Boulevard called Waterloo Records. Austin has changed over the years—for one thing, Lamar had considerably less traffic in those days—and so has Waterloo. While Kunz watched other independent music stores barely stay afloat, and…

Fine Art

Apr 1, 2002 By Katy Vine

Point of View Since 1993, the bodies of 266 murdered young Mexican women have been found in the desert surrounding Ciudad Juárez, an industrial city that sits directly across the border from El Paso. A multimedia exhibit that opened March 8 and runs through April 11 at the UTEP Union…

Fine Art

Mar 1, 2002 By Katy Vine

ABSTRACT IMPRESSIONS Some theatergoers, when ruminating on the plays of director Robert Wilson, sigh deeply, rub their eyes, and murmur comments like, “So the giant fish was really a time machine?” The Waco native’s work—such as the twelve-hour Life and Times of Joseph Stalin—usually elicits a strong reaction, and for…

Special Occasion

Feb 1, 2002 By Katy Vine

ARE YOU GONNA BE THERE (AT THE LOVE-IN)? We know, we know—despite your best intentions, you usually wait until midnight on February 13 to plan your Valentine’s Day, which means you’ll miss the Love Fest parade in Lovelady. If you simply can’t plan ahead, don’t fret: You’ll still have a…


Jan 1, 2002 By Katy Vine

PLAY TIME If you have any doubt that Houston’s theater community is living up to its vibrant reputation, make it your New Year’s resolution to take a seat in one of the city’s velvet-covered chairs and check out the following selections. Begin with two plays by August Wilson: Jitney, Wilson’s…

Fine Art

Dec 1, 2001 By Katy Vine

VIDA DE LA RAZA It may strike some people as funny that Cheech Marin, the actor who catapulted to fame as a crazy, glassy-eyed dope smoker in Cheech and Chong movies, has been a serious Chicano art collector since the late seventies. But Marin is sincere, for the moment, as…


Dec 1, 2001 By Katy Vine

A TIME TO REMEMBER When the heads of the National Museum of the Pacific War in Fredericksburg planned the museum’s official mainland commemoration of the Pearl Harbor anniversary, they knew it was going to be important—this, after all, is the sixtieth year since the 1941 attack. More than three hundred…

A Great Weekend

Nov 1, 2001 By Katy Vine

REMEMBER THE ALAMO CITY In San Antonio a prima ballerina takes the stage and beginner mariachis meet their masters November 16-18. But there’s more. Your weekend itinerary: Friday morning after ten o’clock, wander through the McNay Art Museum’s recently refurbished mansion and see “Corot to Picasso: European Masterworks From the…

Straight Talk

Nov 1, 2001 By Katy Vine

HOLD ON, MR. EX-RESIDENT ABC News veteran Sam Donaldson will be the grand marshal in the Las Palmas Del Sol Sun Bowl Parade in El Paso November 22. Have you been the grand marshal of an El Paso parade before? No, this is a high honor. Let me tell…

Straight Talk

Nov 1, 2001 By Katy Vine

HOLD ON, MR. EX-RESIDENT ABC News veteran Sam Donaldson will be the grand marshal in the Las Palmas Del Sol Sun Bowl Parade in El Paso November 22. Have you been the grand marshal of an El Paso parade before? No, this is a high honor. Let me…

Fine Art

Sep 30, 2001 By Katy Vine

GOOD FINDS It’s always a pleasant surprise to come across a fantastic outdoor sculpture in the middle of a downtown, to see a beautiful mural on the side of a building, or to hear a talented busker playing a tune on a city street. Lately, you can’t round a corner…

Straight Talk

Sep 30, 2001 By Katy Vine

THE SILENT TREATMENT Seventy-eight-year-old Marcel Marceau, who puts on more than two hundred pantomime shows a year around the world, will perform this month in Austin, Crockett, and Tyler. Are you generally a quiet person even when you’re not working, or do you cut loose and talk constantly? Generally,…

Screen Gems

Sep 30, 2001 By Katy Vine

Mexican movies were muy caliente in the middle of the past century, and Harlingen's Rogelio Agrasanchez, Jr. has the posters to prove it.

Mary Kay Ash

Aug 31, 2001 By Katy Vine

Though no one at Dallas-based Mary Kay Cosmetics will say too much about her physical condition, 83-year-old cosmetics queen Mary Kay Ash remains in fragile health following a stroke she suffered five years ago, and she rarely leaves her famous “round house” in North Dallas. Until that time, she was…

Texas Chain Saw Massacre

Aug 31, 2001 By Katy Vine

With its psychosexual overtones and perverse violence, The Texas Chain Saw Massacre was so sidesplittingly over-the-top when it was released that the horror film genre hasn’t been the same since. Filmed in Austin, the pioneering 1974 flick brought tasteless gore into mainstream theaters—and made it nearly impossible for most…

Jay J. Armes

Aug 31, 2001 By Katy Vine

Back in January 1976 when Gary Cartwright wrote “Is Jay J. Armes for Real?” Armes was best known to the average Joe or Jane as “the dude with the hand-hooks who can do karate.” He bragged that he was a private investigator who employed more than two thousand agents, that…

Dapper Bandit

Aug 31, 2001 By Katy Vine

In September 1984 Gloria Brock (a pseudonym) began a three-year relationship with Mark Reeves. It could have been the perfect romance, except that Brock was a Dallas prostitute and Reeves was the infamous Dapper Bandit, the man who committed a string of bank robberies from 1978 to 1988 without ever…

Around the State

May 31, 2001 By Patricia McConnico, Eileen Schwartz and Katy Vine

Dame Edna dresses up Houston; three new travel guides throw the book at Texas; a Flock of Seagulls (and other eighties acts you thought were lost at sea) return to Houston; and regional theater takes a bow in Austin, Fort Worth, and Waco.

T Bone, Well Done

Mar 1, 2001 By Katy Vine

He's produced albums for the likes of Roy Orbison and Elvis Costello for years, but now Fort Worth's T Bone Burnett is writing songs again and composing music for movies and plays. At 53 he's on a creative roll and, as he says, "Never bored."

Mar 1, 2001 By Patricia McConnico, Eileen Schwartz and Katy Vine

With stars ranging from Willie Nelson to Tommy Lee Jones, an Austin awards show gets top billing. Plus: The North Texas Irish Festival harps on its success; Houston has a weekend perfect for the kids; El Paso packs the house for the Siglo de Oro; and Dallas' Meadows Museum has visions of Spain.

Where’s Walden

Feb 1, 2001 By Katy Vine

Assistant editor Katy Vine reveals what it was like to live for a week at Walden, an apartment complex in Houston that has the fastest residential Internet connection in the world. (See "Love and War in Cyberspace".)

Love and War in Cyberspace

Feb 1, 2001 By Katy Vine

Brandon and Denise were not like other people. They were smarter, more introverted. They adored computers, playing games online at three in the morning with people in Finland. When they and other hard-core techies moved to Walden, a Houston apartment complex with the fastest residential Internet connection in the world, it seemed like a wired paradise. For a while, it was.