November 2006

Features

Acting Up

Nov 1, 2006 By Katy Vine

At the Giddings State School, violent teenagers come to terms with their horrific crimes—and learn how to avoid committing them again—through role-playing exercises in a jailhouse version of group therapy. This is what your tax dollars are paying for? Well, it works. For a while, at least.

The Chop Is in the Mail

Nov 1, 2006 By Patricia Sharpe

You want to send your granny a grapefruit this Christmas? Your bro a brisket? Your pop a pie? We’ve taste-tested more than four hundred foodstuffs that Texas companies will happily ship to your door, and more than forty are first-class.

Agent of Change

Nov 1, 2006 By Paul Burka

In four years as president of Texas A&M University, former CIA director Robert M. Gates—who knows a thing or two about leading a strong, hidebound, misunderstood culture—has left few areas of campus life untouched. But putting sushi in the dining halls is nothing compared with overhauling the Aggie brand.

Reporter

Barbara Orbison

Nov 1, 2006 By Jeff McCord

Barbara and Roy Orbison were married nineteen years before his death, in 1988. Just released are three of the legendary rocker’s classics, Crying, In Dreams, and Sings Lonely and Blue (Monument/Legacy), along with the new DVD documentary, In Dreams, which Barbara helmed as executive producer. The DVD is fascinating. It…

The Californian

Nov 1, 2006 By Jeff McCord

Being Sandra Bullock’s onetime boy toy as well as the leader of a scatological frat band known as the Scabs is not the résumé from which instant respectability springs. He’s no critic’s darling, yet Austin rocker BOB SCHNEIDER seems utterly unconcerned with such things (he once had the cheek to…

War and Peace

Nov 1, 2006 By Jeff McCord

“Civilizations wearin’ thin/Like an old sad shirt.” BUTCH HANCOCK pulls no punches on his latest diatribe, WAR AND PEACE (Two Roads). Hancock emerges from his Terlingua exile with his first solo album in six years, and he’s obviously been brooding out in the desert. Those reticent to have another singer…

The Long Night of Winchell Dear

Nov 1, 2006 By Mike Shea

At a mere 158 pages, THE LONG NIGHT OF WINCHELL DEAR calls to mind that kvetch of the hoary Catskills resort patron: “The food is terrible—and such small portions!” To be fair, the latest from brand-name Hill Country novelist ROBERT JAMES WALLER is not terrible, but it is disappointing—slapdash and…

In a Special Light

Nov 1, 2006 By Mike Shea

It’s tempting to focus on ELROY BODE’s celebrations of life’s simple pleasures (birds, interesting strangers, barbershops) in this El Pasoan’s new collection of microscopically short ruminations, IN A SPECIAL LIGHT. But there is no denying the insistent melancholy (verging on depression) that gives the book grit and balance. Bode cuts…

The Lives of Rocks

Nov 1, 2006 By Mike Shea

Fort Worth native RICK BASS has loaded his earthy story collection, THE LIVES OF ROCKS, with three-way relationships of all stripes—platonic, romantic, familial, adversarial—and with characteristic economy of language, he mines a wide range of human emotion from these mélanges à trois. “Goats” is a gentle slapstick about two teenage…

Douglass St. Clair Smith

Nov 1, 2006 By Mike Shea

The SubGenius Psychlopaedia of Slack: The Bobliographon is—how to put this—the most unusual text most folk will ever encounter. Its Fort Worth–bred author-editor midwifed the birth of the for-profit Church of the SubGenius (“the only religion to pay its taxes”) more than 25 years ago and remains the wizard behind…

Molly Ivins

Nov 1, 2006 By Evan Smith

“The newspaper business? I don’t mind being in a dying industry, but it really pisses me off to be in one that’s committing suicide.”

Trying to Never Catch Up

Nov 1, 2006 By Jeff McCord

Your band can’t get going? Here’s some advice: Take a look at your singer. If his or her vocals lack character, there’s little chance of moving beyond the odd house party. There are many reasons the self-released debut from Austin’s WHAT MADE MILWAUKEE FAMOUS, Trying to Never Catch Up (Barsuk),…

Web

Books That Cook

Nov 1, 2006 By Katie O'Reilly

The women of the Junior League of Odessa believe there’s nothing better than “puttin’ on a pair of boots, meetin’ friends and eatin’ some good food.” And in The Wild Wild West: Cuisine From the Land of Cactus and Cowboys, the ladies show Texans how to celebrate the legends and…

Playing for Keeps

Nov 1, 2006 By Christopher Danzig

Senior editor Katy Vine talks about visiting the Giddings State School, a juvenile detention facility where she observed therapists helping kids who’ve committed violent offenses wrestle their inner demons.

Mail-order Mania

Nov 1, 2006 By Christopher Danzig

Senior editor Patricia Sharpe and foodie Brooke Ferguson discuss the time, the tasting, and the tenacity involved in reviewing more than four hundred mail-order food items.

Seared Salmon Over Cauliflower Purée

Jan 20, 2013 By Texas Monthly

Catalan, Houston 1 large head of cauliflower, cut into pieces with stems removed 1 clove of garlic 2 cups milk 4 tablespoons olive oil salt and pepper juice from 2 preserved lemons, or use fresh lemons if you cannot find preserved 1 shallot, sliced…

Catalan

Jan 20, 2013 By Patricia Sharpe

Juicy, very juicy. as my happily dazed friend remarked, perusing the tabletop, “There’s so much to dip your bread in that you hardly know where to reach next.” Consider yourself warned: The one thing you do not want to do at Catalan is run out of bread, lest you miss…

Columns

Miscellany

Around the State

Nov 1, 2006 By Texas Monthly

Jordan’s Pick Dallas Opera Dallas LIKE SO MANY BABY BOOMERS warily approaching that milestone birthday—yes, you know which one—the Dallas Opera finds itself at the contemplative crossroads of half a century. Happily, there’s no midlife crisis in sight: Beginning this month, the venerated institution will be treating its guests to…

Thin Ice

Nov 1, 2006 By Texas Monthly

ABOUT YOUR SEPTEMBER COVER … As a lifetime Texan and hockey dad, I’m a bit offended. Okay, I’m over it. However, I’m wondering if you know that the state of Texas houses more pro hockey teams than any other state. I’m wondering if you know just how many kids…

The Spy Who Loved Them

Nov 1, 2006 By Evan Smith

WHEN I MOVED TO TEXAS TO WORK for Texas Monthly in late 1991, the two words staring out at me from an upcoming cover were “Aggie Sex.” Was I on a different planet? I quickly got up to speed on what an Aggie was—sex I’d heard of—but it took me…