Houston Needs Its Own Emojis, So We Created a Set
Illustrations by Peter Ryan
Emoticons have been around the Internet since before the actual web was invented. Nerds used them when trying to convey that, no, they did not seriously think Spock was in Star Wars instead of Star Trek. ;) It could be argued that these subtle little icons have prevented or been the cause of many misunderstandings, breakups and even all-out fights. But as the Internet evolved and as phones began to take center stage in the exchange of information, we all needed more sophisticated tools for relating our emotions via e-mail and text message.
From a laughing face to a pile of poop, these tiny iconographic images from Japan (naturally) have given us all sorts of ways to communicate via pictures. New emojis are being created nearly every day, getting increasingly granular and giving us extremely specific methods of conveying our feelings — don't we all need multiple chicken icons? And why should Houston be left out of the fun? If someone else won't do it for us, we'll make our own.
A fairly obvious and immediate recognition that we do indeed live in Houston, the flooded car is not only a symbol of our rainforest-like conditions, but a warning that this could seriously happen at any time.
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These bloodsucking bastards, often a product of the floods that inundate our cars, swarm us in the summer like bees on honey, making insect repellent our friend and constant companion.
If the floodwaters don't get your car, there is no question the potholes will. Drive down Richmond Avenue someday if you are confused as to what we are talking about.
Houston is booming with construction. Stand on the balcony of an apartment in Midtown or the Montrose and you'll notice cranes as far as the eye can see.
For years, Mattress Mac at Gallery Furniture was the go-to guy for sleep comfort. Now, there is a mattress store on every damn corner, particularly in the Montrose. The only stores you might see more of are dry cleaners and Starbucks. Maybe.
Well, this is just obvious. If you haven't experienced Houston traffic, save yourself the agony and avoid it at all costs.
There are, in essence, three kinds of grills widely in use here: the barbecue variety, the chrome ones on your truck and the gold stuff in your mouth. All are appropriately H-Town.
And to go with that grill, you need rims, preferably the wide, 20-inch variety. But no spinners; what is this, 2005?
Road construction barrel
While we are talking about cars, keep in mind that cranes aren't the only kind of construction warning markers. The vast majority of our construction woes are on the roads, not inside buildings.
It's no secret that Houston has produced more than its share of rappers, and that includes the chopped and screwed variety, born out of a genuine love of sizzurp or purple drank, the breakfast (and sedative) of champions.
Sigh, if only this weren't an accurate depiction. The Eighth Wonder of the World doesn't even look like the Eighth Wonder of Baytown at this point.
If you live in Houston without air conditioning...are you nuts?
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