July 19th, 2010
The Week That Was 7.18.10
Some weeks are busy start to finish and tire you out, wishing for Monday to arrive for a little R&R at work. Other weeks, everything happens on one day and it leaves you dazed, stars above your head, unsure what just happened or what’s supposed to happen next. Sunday was kind of like that for me. I woke up early, got some work done, went to Zelko Bistro for lunch, Shade of Hope to check out the artists working on the philanthropic window dressings, then made way around town on a street art hunt, then bought a dresser, then more work, then to the movies to buy a ridiculously priced ticket for Inception at the IMAX. Needless to say, I don’t know whether I’m coming or going this morning, but at least The Week That Was has finally made it to your screens.
Man, Women, Dogs and Boars (Richard)
Every now and then we’re fortunate enough to have an experience that reminds us we’re alive. Alive in the most basic sense of survival in the midst of our fellow, albeit wild, animals. When visiting family in Muenster, it’s always a treat to explore the acres of wild brush along the Red River. I’m fascinated by how much I don’t know when conversing with my relatives there: drag your feet in the brush to alert snakes, three leaved ivy means “don’t touch,” only handle the plastic on the electrified fence, and perhaps most important, don’t wander in boar country without a gun. As much as I’d like to think I could channel my inner-Locke with my little Gerber pocket knife, I think the odds are in favor of sharp tusks and brutal canines.
As our party hiked through a wild plum patch reaching well over our heads, my sister-in-law, Rose and I stayed behind to examine a hog wallow. Before the word boar escaped our lips, the front runners of our party were frantically fleeing back towards us, with shrill panicked screams, “Hogs, hogs, hogs!” Three ran past us. Rose, in the excitement tripped into the wallow, landing hard on her chest in an effort to save her camera. “Rose is down!” I stop. She gets up, snorts can be heard just feet away. Three dogs, four women and one man racing towards the dirt road from which we came. We finally complete the race of our lives finishing to the safety of the house. With locked gate in place, grunts in the distance, the retelling begins.
“When I fell, I knew I was a goner. I thought, ‘Oh no, I’m the person in the movie that dies.’ Luckily I saved the camera.”
People C’mon (Paul)
Sometimes we advise you for the sake of advising. One might call that “liking to hear yourself speak.” We prefer to think of it as a trying on our Houston-savvy hats. There are other occasions that we actually fall into line with our own words of “wisdom.” This is especially true with stuff like the Procrastinator’s Plan. This was not true this week, since I took my own advice and saw Delta Spirit perform on Friday… twice. Cactus Music was the first live show for one of their in-store performances. Delta Spirit seemed to draw a bigger crowd than the Summer Fest Poster unveiling last month. After a quick interlude at Stag’s Head for a brew and a burger, I went out to Warehouse Live for the follow-up concert. The Romany Rye (pictured above) opened the show, revving up the crowd. David Vandervale followed up the opener with a decidedly “meh” performance that pushed me to catch up with a friend outside the venue waiting for the Delta Spirit closing set. Thrown amongst their hits, Delta Spirit managed a short cover of Pink Floyd’s “Wish You were Here” which bled into a fan favorite. After a two-song encore, I left wishing I was a rockstar, once again. Friday hosted great show from a great band with a surprisingly large following. Word on the street is that you couldn’t have gone wrong catching Andrew Karnavas on the same night.
Plays in Dirt (Paul)
Sunday morning is not a time to make plans. It’s a time to sleep in and be startled awake by neighbors mowing their lawn much too early in the morning. One way to force me to break through that comfortable trend is to offer Zelko Bistro’s brunch. Now, many of you would say that 11:30AM isn’t such a hard time to ready yourself on a Sunday. Rest assured, faithful reader, you don’t know me. We joined the rest of the Heights faithful at their newest neighborhood bistro and found seating immediately upon walking in as tables turned over and opened up for the no-reservations-making public. Four items on the menu jumped out at me before I finally decided on ordering the Chicken and Waffle. That beautiful dish above was my pre-lunch treat. It’s definitely an envy-enticing meal and I wouldn’t be surprised if you were reaching for your planners right now, hoping to encourage a few friends to make the journey with you next weekend to Zelko.
Shades (and Chairs) of Philanthropy (Paul)
Every night when I draw my blinds I think to myself, “I really wish I had something better to look at than this bland, monotone sheet.” Actually, I just have venetian blinds that I wish would stay even from time to time instead of me having to fiddle with individual strings and a carpenter’s level. After brunch on Sunday, we made our way out to the Houston Furniture Bank to check out the launch of Shade of Hope, a fundraiser presented by the philanthropists at Blinds.com. Artists and their fans made their way out to Hussion Street and I-45 to showcase their skills painting and cooing. The roller blinds being donated by Blinds.com will be on display throughout the city just like the art cows that found themselves on busy street corners years ago. My question is where will the lone chair be displayed. So many artists showed to the event wanting to help out, the crew ran out of blinds to paint. An enterprising artist commandeered a chair as his canvas. Be on the look out, and if you happen to come across one of these spruced up window dressings send us your photos. We’re going to try to hunt them all down ourselves, but that will be a grand undertaking. If I cheat and ask where they’re being displayed don’t judge me. For now, send us your photos at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Street Art, Fleeting Art (Paul)
When I was a kid living up in Pennsylvania, I remember long road trips through three states to reach my grandparents living in Connecticut. From those journeys, the graffiti on the walls of cut-out hills turned cliffs always stuck out on me. Behind the chicken wire holding renegade boulders safely off the road were these complicated mazes of paint. At that early age I had no hope of being able to decipher a single letter of the composition. I’m proud to say that, at this older age, I still have no clue what is an “R” and what’s a “Z” in any street art I see. That fact doesn’t stop me from being amazed at the final product. On Sunday afternoon, one thing led to another and finally to a street art hunt around Midtown, Montrose and the Heights. It’s amazing how much I’ve missed over the years that I’ve lived in Houston and how easy it is to see the art that has been taken for granted by just opening your eyes over the course of a three hour tour (…a three hour tour). We’ll have a longer photo essay later this week, but I wanted to give you a taste for now.
Sunday Funday (Marc)
With a trip out of town planned for this week, Sunday was my last opportunity to take part in the Saint Arnold Midtown Scavenger hunt. While I won’t give away the locations, everybody who met up at the first stop at 1PM had already figured out all the destinations, so it isn’t exceedingly difficult. A few of us happened to know the bartender at our first location and after telling him what we were up to, he told us that he’d seen a bunch of people coming and awkwardly looking around. We did our best job not to look creepy as we scoured the place to find the “clue.” At each place we went, we’d grab a quick picture and then sit down and enjoy a beer. Of course, we also decided to order some food at more than a few of the places. Wings, burgers and even a slice of pizza at the ever reliable Ponzo’s all helped to soak up the beer or pass the time as the sky dumped a monsoon on Midtown. Each place we went, we were met by friendly faces and curiosity about the scavenger hunt. We even stumbled into “Sucky Song Sunday,” where we were treated to Celine Dion followed by Vanilla Ice. The locals got a little restless when we went to add our own sucky song, but when the first notes of N’Sync started blaring, they knew we were down with the cause. By the time we made it to the last stop on the itinerary, six beers had done such a number on me that I put myself in the penalty box. My only request is that Saint Arnold start making a “near beer” for lightweights like me.