I’m behind on my reading. This past weekend I spent about a solid 14 hours in the car. I ventured off I-35 in Hillsboro due to stand-still traffic. I made my way to Hwy 281 – taking the long way to San Antonio. Departure time – 1:43 p.m. Arrival time – 8:01 p.m. After a horrible night’s sleep, the boy-child and I decided to head back to Dallas very early the next morning. It was a glorious morning, and thinking that we really weren’t in any rush, I, again, ventured off I-35 around San Marcos to take the back road home – ya know, stopping at charming little antique shops, taking in the scenery, etc. Big mistake. The boy-child was antsy – the dog was perched and whining the entire way home. Departure – 6:32 a.m. Arrival time – 5:02 p.m. At one point my GPS led us down an actual 2-miles of dirt road to find ourselves back to I-35.
Sometimes it strikes me as so utterly bizarre that we are moving to San Antonio. San Antonio? Never in a million years would I have predicted this new residence. It’s not like I’ve never lived outside of Big D. I lived on the upper east side of NYC back in the 80′s, in Austin for awhile back in the 90′s, Houston in the 70′s, Argyle in the 60′s…I’m a worldly broad and all that crap. San Antonio was always just a place we stopped to do the Alamo/River Walk thing on our way to Port Aransas. But the last few months of San Antonio hangin’ has endeared the city to me immensely. People are…are…nice. Friendly. The city is very family-oriented. I like that.
However, sometimes I feel a tad melancholy about leaving Dallas. My plan for the future has most definitely been altered. And frankly, my plan would probably never have come to pass anyway. It was always my dream to get the kiddies raised-up right, then off to college happy and healthy. Then TFG, Speck (the dog) and I would set-up house over around White Rock Lake or Hollywood Heights or somewhere Lakewoodish. It’s my favorite part of Dallas. It’s the only part of Dallas in which I would live out my days. Watching the rising property values, and the tearing-down of older homes, slowly my dream started to fade anyway.
So I was most interested in Jim Schutze’s story, Goodbye, Groovy East Dallas…
…Neighborhood activist/gadfly Avi Adelman lives right across the street from the Lower Greenville Whole Foods. When I talked to him, he was adamantly dry-eyed about the whole thing.
“If a development comes in across the street, it’s a business development anyway, and it’s going to make my values go up. Nobody cares if I weep for the hippies. I’m not upset either way. Development happens. Shit happens. Whatever you want to say. You cannot stay stuck in a time frame.”
Well, thank you, Avi. I certainly feel uplifted by that…Read it all.
My fourth decade of life still leaves me saddened when there is so much change. Dallas is no longer the lovely gal she was when I grew up on her streets. Our beautiful Park Cities’, Lakewood, White Rock neighborhoods are slowly being demolished – out with the old – in with the new – and all that crap.
I guess the one thing we are left with that developers can’t bulldoze are our memories and the stories we can tell…
But certain kinds of stuff just won’t happen anymore. It’s a ghost, a whisper, a will-o’-the-wisp. And it’s gone, gone glimmering down the dirty alleyways and through the tangled forests of neglected backyards, lost beneath sodden clothing and furniture of evictees dumped in front of tottering apartment buildings, gone and lost now because East Dallas is too good for it. Too nice.
Jeff Liles told me this story:
“I miss seeing Roxy Gordon’s house,” he said. “I would drive by, and that would just make me feel like I was in East Dallas. He had all these animal bones, these bone sculptures that hung down on the front porch. His house was like a living museum of outlaw culture. Now it’s a vacant lot.
“I remember going over there one night, and the door was open, and you could tell a bunch of people were all hanging out in the living room. There were all these guys sitting around drinking straight from the bottle, and this guy was sitting in the corner, singing.
“And it was Townes Van Zandt [legendary Texas singer-songwriter, died in 1997]. He was just sitting there singing all of his songs for a handful of people in this living room.
“Roxy went back into the kitchen, and I kind of followed him back there, and I was, like, blown away. I wanted to thank him. I said, ‘Roxy, I can’t believe I’m getting to experience something like this. Thank you so much.’
“He said, ‘Dammit, Jeff, can you take him with you? He’s been here a fuckin’ week.’
“I said, ‘Well, I’m staying with my parents in North Dallas. I don’t know if I can bring Townes Van Zandt over to my house.’
“Shit like that happened all the time, man.” Read it all.
I swear to Gawd, I freakin’ worship Jeff Liles.
Schutze is always a good read – so read.
Andrea Grimes is the bravest girl in the whole wide world, and I love her thiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiis much. Seriously, the girl is freakin’ flawless (and funny) when it comes to her Girl On Top adventures. Read it. NOW!
Wait, wait wait…where did I put that thing…oh…here it is…heh-heh-heh…
All this and the girl can sing too!
Jonanna rounds up news you can use.
Somebody had a busy, busy night.
There’s a lot of other stuff to read, that’s relevant about bands/artists, but their shows have come and gone.