November 1983 Issue



They are the quirky enterprises that offer two things under one roof—like shrimp and guns, steaks and loans, or eggrolls and gasoline.

Fantasy Island

It’s a high-rise developer’s dream. Houston’s old guard wants to turn 34 acres of downtown warehouses into an island of classy shops and pricey condos. They thought they had it wired, until Kathy Whitmire was elected mayor.

Still on the Case

Assassination buffs come in all shapes and convictions—archivists, technologists, mob-hit theorists, and more—but they are all obsessed with Lee Harvey Oswald, and his crime is the focus of their lives.

Western Art

This story is from Texas Monthly’s archives. We have left the text as it was originally published to maintain a clear historical record. Read more here about our archive digitization project. From 1983 to 1986, Texas Monthly’s regular feature, “Western Art,” highlighted artists’ takes on the classic



The Palace of Pros

With The Palace of Amateurs, the Plaza Theatre brought a sparkling Mariel Hemingway to Dallas and a lofty new theatrical standard to Texas.

The Roadside Eye

Robert Frank took casual but expressive snapshots that captured dramas of American life and altered the course of modern photography.

A Surfeit of Bimbos

In The Desert Rose Larry McMurtry’s heroines never blossom into believable women. The Franchise is a tough tale about graft and the gridiron.

Classical Music

A Soprano Is Born

Houston likes to think it discovered Erie Mills, but it’s willing to share the winning young star with the rest of the opera world.


Cool Minds in a Hot War

Nick Nolte is a journalist dodging bullets and political involvement in Under Fire. The Right Stuff is about Americans, space, and manifest destiny. The Big Chill is a warm look at the cooling of sixties idealism.



Texas Monthly Reporter

A new era for Texas prisons; a new view of Wichita Falls; a new look, alas, for a Dallas street; a new metropolis in East Texas; a new generation of frat rats.


State Secrets

State Secrets

The Supreme Court scores one for Texas against the Yankees; blame the recession on InterFirst; why Phil Gramm makes a great Republican; an oil squabble matches the greedy little independents against poor, starving Big Oil.

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