dear texas. please send breakfast tacos from taco cabana.

Lately she’s written about gumbo, queso and crawfish, making me the Homesick Texan.

Spending time with Dave and Tara this week, our conversation turned once again to our plans to Eat Through Austin — a tour we consumed back in 2004 when Omar got married. That’s the last time I’ve been to Austin, and I hear it’s gone through some changes since then.

I know my Eat Through Austin pangs are bad when I’m craving Texadelphia or a sandwich from Thundercloud. That’s not just “Wow, I wish I could eat Salt Lick today” normal Austin nostalgia. I’m craving a sandwich on Oltorf. That’s got to be more about the feeling of being in Austin on a nice day, picking up a couple of sandwiches to take down by the lake, having the laziest of Sundays.

Is it too much to ask for one real Tex-Mex joint in Los Angeles? It seems every other person around here is from Texas. Why can’t we all get together and demand some decent migas?

Dammit, now I’m going to end up making homemade migas and queso and guacamole and buy some Shiner and find myself immobile on the couch stuffed with deliciousness and pain, weeping guilty tears from trying to create a gastric time machine. All because it’s a billion degrees outside and I can’t get to Trudy’s from here.

watching rita

“Due to the hurricane in the area you are calling, your call cannot be completed as dialed.”

This is the message I hear when I try to reach my friends in Houston or Austin or any part of Southern Texas. This is all I can do now, post a stupid entry to say, “I love you. Be safe.”

Jessica.

Let’s see. Bit of a wine headache, little bit groggy, and feeling like I spoke all the words ever invented — must have hung out with Jessica last night.

She arrives at my house and it’s like Texas has come for a visit. Always in a patterned skirt/blouse combination absolutely nobody else could pull off. Thick, dark hair that falls from a ponytail in slow motion like a scene from a movie. She acts like it’s no big deal. She’s filled with compliments, but she’s the one who always looks like the woman Sandra Bullock wants to be.

“All right, Miss Pama-lama. What is going on with you?” Continue reading

Dear Houston,

Tough year, huh? If you’re not getting slammed from the excellent Enron movie, there’s a documentary about how fat you are, or how you recruit kids for the war while they’re trying to order lunch. Your representative is a crazy person. Then you’ve got Oprah interviewing the lady who ran over her husband a few times, and to top it all off, every single highway in your city is currently undergoing construction, making it near impossible to leave the house. This is so you can’t talk to each other, and come to the logical consensus that it’s time to get the hell out of Houston for a few years. Continue reading

Mandela Loves Cheese

I’m back. Thanks for waiting.

I think I officially love New York, but I don’t see how anybody lives there all of the time. It was exhausting. Constantly moving, always spending money, sweating while cold and raining… I’ve never really been cold while sweating and wet from rain before. It was a lot of fun and took all of my money. I got to see just about everybody I love out there (including one special lady that drove two hours just to see me for an hour at a TGIFriday’s. That’s how you know someone loves you). I think I slept about ten hours total, but that was just fine.

There wasn’t too much sight-seeing, as it was raining most of the time, but I felt like I walked just about every square inch there was around there. I walked the Brooklyn Bridge, I saw a Broadway show, and I was on television (give your TiVoes a rest — the segment isn’t airing until the week of Sept. 15th). I slept in a tiny Manhattan apartment on a broken futon, I slept in a near-stranger’s bed in Brooklyn, and I slept in a guest room in Long Island. I got mistaken for a local and gave directions to Kew Gardens (even though I figured that first word was spelled with just a single letter). I braved my way through thunderstorms and umbrella-bending winds to sign a contact that certifies me as a real writer. I spent an entire night in one bar catching up with friends, crying and laughing and holding hands, wishing there weren’t so many miles between us every single day.

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It's Not So Big

life in mini-texas

You know how sometimes you just have the strangest day that you wouldn’t believe if you saw it on a movie?

Yesterday Tyson showed up and told us that he had just run into a guy he knew from New York. He was on Sunset. He offered Tyson a job. It’s the same corner of Sunset where we ran into two friends from Austin just the night before. We were on our way to a bar and Eric spotted their car. We caught up over drinks on the porch that night, realizing the strange string of events that caused all of us to be on that corner at that very moment.

But it gets stranger.

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“look at choo!”

the proper response is not “bless you.”

Polaroid Stories gets a review

And, a plug for Eric’s show:

SLOW NIGHT AT MCLAUGHLIN’S
Marshall Ryan Maresca wrote and directed this play, which depicts a languid evening
at the Irish bar owned by the McLaughlins in Norville, New York, whose
quiet is disrupted by an unexpected visitor. Robert Berry, Eric
Peterson, and Jesse Wiles star as three estranged brothers who
struggle to calm the sea of tensions between them. Sep 16-Oct
9, Thu-Sat, 8pm, John Henry Faulk Living Theatre, 207 E.
Fourth. $12. 454-TIXS.

You can’t see it if you don’t live in Austin.  Most of you don’t live in Austin.  Well, maybe about fifty or so of you do, but the rest of you don’t.  You don’t know what it’s like.  You haven’t lived here, you don’t know.  You can’t know.  You just can’t.

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