Sunday, May 28, 2006

That's right, I'm not from Texas

I'm actually from a sensibly mid-sized, middle-class, midwestern city. It's accentless, or at least it's the accent that they train anchormen to use, as it's the most bland and nonthreatening of all. I hear it's a nice place to raise your kids, but I don't remember being all that thrilled about the experience, myself.

After college at my sensible midwestern university, I decided that that town needed to be blown (and not in the good way. Come to think of it, is there a good way?) Having no other acceptable course of action, I applied to various graduate schools, including UT. The University of Illinois offered me a full ride and a stipend, and a job. UT offered me nothing except a vast number of long-haired hippie men and extremely good convertibling weather. So, clearly, the choice was obvious.

Depending on my mood, I could draft extensive lists about either why you SHOULD or SHOULD NOT live in Texas. But, honestly, I'd be lying about having much knowledge of that subject, though I've lived here (jeez) 13 years, now.

Y'see, I believe that Austin floats somewhere above the rest of Texas, and though born of its soul, is somehow separate at heart. I just cannot resolve the fact that the city I love, and chose to call my home, is a part of the state that brought us this heinous mess of a president, this wretch of a governor, and the collective collosal sucking void that is our state government.

And yet, I have to accept the crappy salary that this state offers me. I have to swallow the bullshit about how Tom Craddick and company want to fund the schools on the backs of the poor (e.g. property and sales tax) rather than taxing the folks with the income. I have to look at Rick Perry. I. HAVE. TO. LOOK. AT. RICK. PERRY. People, do you know how hard that is for me? If I ever get close to him, I'm going to muss up his coif. They can't shoot me for that, can they?

Ah...but Austin. Has swimming holes, and Mexican food, and barbecue. It has Central Market, and good music, often for free. There's swimming pool movie parties, the Alamo Drafthouse (which does a recurring Buffy Sing-Along show, with props!) and there is a damned good excuse to drink beer most every weekend. It has the Hill Country right outside it (though the Bush bumper stickers are more prevalent out there; you kind of have to cover your eyes and do the "I CAN'T SEE YOU I CAN'T SEE YOU" thing. That's actually hard to do when you're driving, so take care with that, will you?)

Today we went to Hamilton Pool. I'd never been there. It's about a 40-minute drive away from Austin. (Get there early if you go; they have 75 parking spaces, and your ass will wait until one opens up. At 12:00, we waited about half an hour.) It's a nice, shady grotto - big, beautiful cliffs, a cold, clean swimming hole, and lots of little waterfalls to sit under. I can't believe it's taken me this long to get there...and there are lots of others that are on our list to attend during this, the Summer of Broke. The drive out was spectacular; Hill Country vistas all around, and if you squeeze your eyes just so you can ignore the McMansion kudzu that creeps ever further outside of Austin.

Next up: Krause Springs. And of course, Barton Springs and Deep Eddy are in the mix, too.

Tonight, because it has Austin in it, I love Texas. And tomorrow, Memorial Day. Beer will be consumed, with a dash of bitters due to my anger at this goddamned, Texan, misleader who continues to kill unabated. (And he'd still win this state if he could run again.)

Hey, what do you know, the pendulum shifted again! Damn, I hate this place*!

*That was a joke. Sort of. See, there was this whole post, about how I'm conflicted and all? And that ending statement was a coda, because I didn't have an ending for it? And if I explain it too much then I'm just killing all the humor? You know?


Karla said...

Believe me when I say I am SO with you on Texas politics. I always feel, when people ask where I'm from that I have to say all in one breath, "FromTexasbutIhave nevervotedforGeorgeBushnotonce!"

And can I be there when you ruffle Perry's hair? You might need me when your hand gets stuck and you will need a friend to extricate you.

then we can both go to jail together, cuz, really, isn't that what TRUE friendship is?

Lee said...

GW has run for office five times, and I am happy to say that I voted against him in the last four. I would have voted against him the first time, but I was 10 years old. Unfortunately, he has won every time I voted against him. Maybe if I voted FOR him ... oh, except I assume he'll never run for office again. Hey, maybe the next prez will appoint him to the Supreme Court!