<p>Do not adjust your glasses: you are still reading the Best list. Yes, it is true that as a freshman in 2013, Stephanie Klick landed on our Furniture list. But something must have happened during the interim. Her reputation improved among her colleagues (and not just the tea party ones). She seemed to enjoy herself more on the floor (we even caught her smiling once or twice). And she played a pivotal role in the passage of the state’s first bill related to medical marijuana.</p> <p>Klick admitted that she would not have supported this bill in her first session, but then she learned about the plight of children with intractable epilepsy, which causes seizures that the usual array of drugs will not prevent. As a registered nurse, she said she had seen the benefit of using low-THC cannabis oil for treatment, noting that two children had died from seizures since the start of the session. She held firm against opponents who argued that the measure would lead to decriminalizing marijuana for recreational use. “This is kind of like the difference between grape juice and wine, and we’re legalizing grape juice,” Klick fired back.</p> <p>On a controversial bill that tightened the provisions for teens to have an abortion without parental permission, Klick offered a key amendment. It ensured that the names of individual judges handling such cases would not be made public, lessening Democratic opposition and allowing the bill to pass. We look forward to what she will tackle in 2017.</p>

How many rubber chickens have you choked down for a good cause? That’s too many, my friend. Here’s an excellent cause to support and the food is guaranteed to be amazing. On Saturday, February 5, Project Transitions will host a series of eighteen dinners in private homes throughout Austin to raise money for people and families living with HIV/AIDS in Central Texas. It’s $100 a person—that’s a deal, people—and not only will you be incredibly well fed, you will get the see the inside of a really interesting Austin home (how could you pass that up?). A few months back I went to a preview dinner for the press with the theme “Going Quackers” and we feasted on deviled duck eggs, smoked duck breast on bruschetta with a fig and walnut tapenade, and sweet corn “shots” with duck cracklings—and that was just the hors d’oeuvres! Best of all: No rubber chicken! (No rubber duckie, either.) Just to give you an idea, the real dinners include “Charleston: Down Home—Hot and Haute,” “All Good Veggies Go to Heaven,” “Night of the Piranha” (let’s hope there’s not an associated James Bond theme), and “Krewe of Afrodite: Our Own Funky Mardi Gras.” And the list goes on. It’s very easy to sign up—just call (512) 454-8646 or go to projecttransitions.org/events/guess-who.html. You can find out where the funds go and pick out your dinner (seats are limited and they do tend to sell out, so don’t put this off).