November 2000 Issue

On the Cover

They Haven’t Got a Prayer

In the Gulf Coast town of Santa Fe, high school football games had always kicked off with a prayer, but in June the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the practice violated the separation of church and state. Now the issue—which has turned neighbor against neighbor and provoked some decidedly un-Christian behavior— has grown from a local controversy into a national one.


Man of Letters

Forty years after the publication of John Graves's Goodbye to a River, a keepsake volume of correspondence—between the author and J. Frank Dobie, among others— chronicles its journey from an idea for a magazine article to an instant literary classic.

The Searcher

Photographer Kurt Markus spent years tracking down modern working cowboys for his new book, ‘Cowpuncher.’ He corralled the genuine article at several Texas spreads.

Whodunit? Who Cares?

Anne Dingus has a few bones to pick with the modern mystery novel, which she says has been decomposing in recent years. Stepping up to defend the genre: none other than Texas’ queen of murder and mayhem, Mary Willis Walker.

Airport 2000

These days, a plane trip can entail more time in the terminal than in the air. But why get stressed when you can have a massage, taste Texas wines, go for a jog, check your e-mail—even eat gumbo while watching (other people’s) planes take off? A survivor’s guide to DFW,

Judge Not

When Senators Phil Gramm and Kay Bailey Hutchison blocked the nomination of El Paso's Enrique Moreno to the powerful Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals they triggered a firestorm of protest fueled by wounded ethnic pride.



Almost Famous

For brothers Charlie and Bruce Robison, making country music safe for men again is an intriguing proposition—and a risky one because of their wives.


Cooper’s Town

Waco is memorialized in Madison Cooper's Sironia, Texas, the longest novel ever published in the U.S.—and one of the oddest.


Digital Docs

Austin's VidiMedix has a simple prescription for patients who live miles away from big-city health care: Log on and get well.


Music Review

Susan Alcorn

East meets country and western, and a whole lot more, on this Houston pedal-steel guitarist’s debut solo album. As a member of Eugene Chadbourne’s Ernest Tubb Memorial Band, Alcorn plays little that’s recognizable as country or alt-country. The eight improvisational instrumentals on Uma pursue that exploratory spirit without sounding much

Book Review

Gary Cartwright

Turn Out the Lights (University of Texas Press), a collection of articles by Gary Cartwright, arrives in stores this month. Cartwright, a senior editor at Texas Monthly, has written for the magazine since its first issue, February 1973.

Book Review

Larry McMurtry

Mere mortals might consider taking a breather after publishing four titles in twelve months, but Larry McMurtry is made of sterner stuff. Title number four, Boone’s Lick (Simon and Schuster), is the first novel in a new series about the American West in the late nineteenth century. And a killer

Book Review

Bruce Sterling

Austinite Bruce Sterling’s keen eye for global Sturm und Drang has served him well in futuristic novels such as Holy Fire and Distraction, which present darkly comic visions of a new world disorder. In a surprising twist for the science fiction writer, Zeitgeist: A Novel of Metamorphosis is set in

Music Review

Beaver Nelson

Austin’s Beaver Nelson has never been at a loss for songs, just for albums to put them on. By his mid-twenties he had lost his next-big-thing glow by twice signing record deals that failed to yield records, though the bulk of his fans (critics and fellow musicians) would have gotten

Music Review

Frisco Mabel Joy

A songwriter’s songwriter and a cult figure’s cult figure, Houston’s Mickey Newbury authored pop and country hits in the late sixties and early seventies, among them “Sweet Memories” and the Elvis Presley stalwart “An American Trilogy.” He’s the sort of artist Texas produces as naturally as oil or running backs.

Music Review

Susie Ibarra

As a female jazz percussionist and bandleader, Susie Ibarra remains a rarity in the male-dominated world of jazz instrumentalists. Raised in Houston’s small Filipino community, Ibarra found the strength to overcome inequities and used that determination to become a fixture in New York’s Downtown jazz scene. The propulsive fury displayed

Music Review

Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble

SRV breaks out of the gate with Little Stevie Vaughan before he was Stevie Ray. A member of Paul Ray and the Cobras, the kid’s doing “Thunderbird”—the upbeat, swinging standard by the Nightcaps, Texas’ first great white-boy blues band—a song that every Dallas kid with an electric guitar and an



Sweet Mascarpone Polenta With Roasted Nectarines

Blueberry Sauce1 1/2 cups port 1/2 cup sugar juice of 1 lime 8 ounces fresh or frozen blueberriesPlace port, sugar, and lime juice in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Continue to boil for 8 minutes. Stir in blueberries and, if using frozen ones, reheat the sauce (but do

Book Excerpt

Best Bud

Read the first chapter of Edwin "Bud" Shrake's Strange Peaches, this month's Texas Classic.

Web Exclusive

Pray, Tell

Associate editor Pamela Colloff tells the story behind November's cover story, "They Haven't Got a Prayer."


Around the State

Around the State

Three days and two nights in Fort Worth. Plus: Huddling up with Texas football teams; going under the big top with the UniverSoul Circus; keeping time with mariachi music; and sticking to the state's far-flung festivals.

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