Today, of course, is Go Texan Day, marking the opening of the rodeo.
It's the day when secretaries all over downtown wear "western" blouses and skirts, adventurous guys sport bolo ties and cowboy hats, and the rest of us cringe.
Longtime Houstonians know to never, ever schedule any friends to come visit on this day, especially if they're from back east. There's only so many times you can say "Yeah, ummm, it's really just a tradition this one day. You don't see people dressed up like that all the time."
You then say goodbye at the airport, fully confident that the bars in the trendy parts of Brooklyn will soon be regaled with stories of how the goobers in Houston dress all the time.
Five things to remember about Go Texan Day:
1. There is a certain species of secretary, usually from Deer Park or Pasadena, who thinks the ultimate in flirtatious dress is a Western outfit. They therefore will produce slightly more swing to the hips as they trapise around, convinced that every male they pass is secretly harboring cowgirl fantasies. They are wrong.
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2. The male executive who decides to "Go Texan" today will also assume he will need to speak in a booming voice and laugh louder than usual at the office repartee.
3. On the plus side, there's nothing cuter than little kids going Texan at school celebrations. Not high school, though.
4. The trail rides are a wonderful, defiant anachronism that celebrates the bestof hardy Texas pioneers and are to be cherished. Until you're sitting in a traffic jam because some group of idiots decides they want to play cowboys-and-indians for a day.
5. Really, visitors -- WE DON'T DRESS LIKE THIS ALL THE TIME.