By Chris Lane
By Jeff Balke
By Aaron Reiss
By Angelica Leicht
By Dianna Wray
By Aaron Reiss
By Camilo Smith
By Craig Malisow
Okay, y'all: "How to Hide Your Weed" definitely wins for the best Houston Press cover ever! And I thought it was gonna be tough to beat "Master Cockfighter."
Power to the people: I just wanted to write you and tell you how happy I am that this cover story was published. Thank you for aiding in getting this man's words to more people. Great article.
On the Scene
Oh, Ohio: I moved here from Cleveland, Ohio about three months ago. What I gathered initially about the lack of music community here has just been confirmed ["Nobody Gets Out of Here Alive," by John Nova Lomax, February 1]. Finding an amazing show any night of the week is truly a hallmark of Cleveland, and one that I can't find down here. It might be the fact that Cleveland is a rusted-out, blue- collar shell of a town with no economy, but the musicians there are all hungry and they don't rest. I've been trying to find some bands down here (and yes, the few mentioned in the article are quite good), but the "scene" just doesn't seem to exist in the same way as back home. It hurts me since during the day I wear a suit and tie, but at night I truly long to get back into the game and form a band. Where am I supposed to look now?
Deadly dial: Houston's music scene will remain a "cultural cringe" until Houston finally gets a commercial FM radio station that plays and promotes local music. There are great original bands in Houston. The problem is nobody knows about them. Houston's music scene is a "cultural cringe" mainly because our FM radio dial is a "sonic wasteland."
Houston hater: Just wanted to say I completely agree with your article "Nobody Gets Out of Here Alive" [by John Nova Lomax, February 1] and very much love the idea of "cultural cringe" applied to this city. I almost wish people here would do more cringing and less promotion of major arts venues which cater almost exclusively to the complacent patrons who back them financially.
Ask a Policeman
A gabacho who likes Mexicans! I recently visited Houston for a few days, picked up the Houston Press at my motel and found Gustavo Arellano's "Ask a Mexican." I was sickened by some of the comments made by gabachos toward Mexicans. It may be demographics, but when I first moved to north central Louisiana, there were about two Mexican families in my town. After about 15 years, there are hundreds of Mexicans here. Being in law enforcement, I know that probably 90 percent or better are illegal. However, they are here to work and I have no problem with that. I hope that Mexicans don't think that all gabachos dislike them as some of those articles I read indicate. I realize that there are the gangbanger types there in Houston, but that's a difference in lifestyle between the good and the bad. One bad person in a race doesn't make them all bad, just as there are a lot of good policemen and a lot of asshole policemen.
Cantina of Mystery
Strange: I just wanted to thank you for the Jon Paul interview that was included in your 1308 Cantina review ["Tex-Mex Makeover," by Eric Gerber, January 25]. Having gone to the restaurant both before and after the change, I really thought there was something strange going on regarding the change of concept and/or ownership. I couldn't (and still can't) really put my finger on it, but your interview confirms the bizarre and evasive statements made by the management to me in the past.
I thought the part about putting Hugo out of business was particularly peculiar. I'm not in the industry, but I've been eating at Houston restaurants for years and can't recall a restaurant changing concepts so quickly (and it may or may not have changed ownership). With Wiles out and the Laurenzos in, the restaurant has certainly become less interesting. Whether it becomes more successful remains to be seen, given the apparent management issues. I kind of wish La Jaliscience was still there.
Name withheld by request