June 2006 Issue

On the Cover

Water, Water Everywhere

From kayaking on Town Lake to mountain biking around Joe Pool Lake, from bass fishing on Lake Fork to horseback riding on the shores of Lake Whitney, here are some of our favorite things to do in, on, and around Texas lakes.



The Truth Is Out There

Spoiler alert: The mythic Marfa lights may not be real. But there’s no way to know for sure, and that’s why they’re cool.


H. W. Brands

Shoot the Messenger

I thought I’d be teaching middle- schoolers something about Texas history. I didn’t count on what they’d teach me.

Letter From Plano

Shabby Chic

Will the upscale shoppers of Plano really buy what Wal-Mart is selling?


Music Review

An Interview with Ian McLagan

An Interview with Ian McLaganIan McLagan and Ronnie Lane, the keyboardist and the bassist of the famed UK groups the Small Faces and the Faces, eventually made Austin their home—Lane in the mid-eighties, McLagan about a decade later. Lane passed away in 1997, and McLagan pays tribute to his former

Music Review

The Black Angels

The best rock and roll stirs up a maelstrom, a surging wall of sound you can almost reach out and touch. It’s not about craft, chords, equipment, or even how many tickets or albums you sell. It’s underlying motion, propulsion; it’s finding the sweet spot and giving yourself over. Don’t

Music Review

T Bone Burnett

It’s years back, in a rowdy Jersey roadhouse, where a lanky performer peeks over his shades to see if anyone is listening. Most aren’t. Abruptly, he strides out the door. The curious follow him to the parking lot, where, perched on a station wagon, he finishes the show. T BONE

Book Review

Telegraph Days

Meet Nellie Courtright, the resourceful, charming, and enthusiastically copulating protagonist of LARRY MCMURTRY’s Wild West saga TELEGRAPH DAYS. Her father has just “suicided himself,” leaving the 22-year-old and her teenage brother, Jackson, to fend for themselves in the barren no-man’s-land north of Texas. But Nellie goes one better and acquires

Book Review

The Vinegaroon Murders

Quirky doesn’t even begin to describe THE VINEGAROON MURDERS, the dust-blown supernatural murder mystery that makes up volume two of JAMES A. MANGUM’s Dos Cruces trilogy. For starters, the narrator is an angel, though decidedly not the stuff of Sunday school: Shyanne, a seraph, drops the F-bomb with alarming frequency

Book Review

The Flamenco Academy

As a novelist, Sarah Bird is not exactly prolific—it’s been five years since the  Texas Monthly writer-at-large gave us the fine The Yokota Officers Club—but at long last she has delivered the stunning and ambitious THE FLAMENCO ACADEMY, a tale of obsession and, yes, gypsies. Against the backdrop of Albuquerque’s

Book Review

An interview with Ron White

An interview with Ron WhiteThe notoriously boisterous—and blue—comic has come a long way, from his oil patch birthplace of Fritch to sold-out standup tours and multimillion-unit DVD sales. His new book, I Had the Right to Remain Silent … But I Didn’t Have the Ability, melds his real-life misadventures and

Betty Flores

“We don’t look at color, we don’t look at religion, we don’t look at economic means. Laredo is a real laid-back, accept-everybody kind of place.”


Texas Tidbits

Feeling Saucy?

We’re guessing, but odds are that in Wisconsin or Ohio, salsa is just salsa. Not so in Texas (surprise!), where folks devote plenty of time figuring out where to find the hottest or mildest around town. We’ll even go so far as to say that many Texans have their own


Bouquet of Beef on a Stick

Skewers2 ounces skirt steak, thinly sliced 24 bamboo skewers kosher salt to taste black pepper to tasteSeason meat, place skirt steak on skewers, and grill until done.Vinaigrette2 tablespoons white-wine vinegar 1/4 cup pomegranate juice 1 teaspoon horseradish, grated 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard 3 tablespoons fresh tarragon, chopped 1 cup extra

Books That Cook

Books That Cook

It’s no wonder restaurateur Cindy Burch ended up in the food business. She had grandmothers in Texas and Alabama whose love for cooking had a profound influence on her. Not to mention that Burch started experimenting with recipes early in life. She found her match when she added some Southwestern

Web Exclusive

Digital Underground

Executive editor Mimi Swartz talks about Houston’s Bellaire High School and a potent combination: teenagers, drugs, and the Internet.

Web Exclusive


Articles editor Brian D. Sweany talks about editing this month’s cover story on lakes.

Texas History 101

Texas History 101

At the end of World War II, Texas was “home” to more than 78,000 enemy prisoners living in POW camps.

Pat's Pick


YOU GOTTA GIVE THE POSSE behind Dallas restaurant Tryst credit for one thing: They’re not afraid to go out on a limb (just pray they’re not blithely sawing it off at the same time). Owner Brittney O’Daniel’s first big risk is taking a chance in a still-rather-marginal part


Editor's Letter

Lights Out?

I’m going to go out on a limb here—but not too far—and predict that supporters of Chris Bell’s campaign for governor will be angry when they read “He’s Sisyphus, and He Approves This Message”, by executive editor S. C. Gwynne. But misery loves company: Residents of Marfa, the Presidio

Around the State

Around the State

Jordan’s PickTEXAS CanyonIN JULY 1966 A CULTURAL icon was born—in Canyon, of all places. A few years earlier, some Amarilloans looking to boost interest in their corner of the state got in touch with the Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Paul Green. Would he please whip up one of his trademark outdoor

Roar of the Crowd

Seventy-five and Counting

I ENJOYED EVERY WORD OF “75 Things We Love About Texas” [April 2006]. There are so many you could not include because of a lack of room. A few that occurred to me: the very shape of Texas, the ceaseless arguments over how to make real Texas

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