Wednesday, March 17, 2010

City of Outsiders

Like so many people I ended up in the Dallas/Fort Worth area because it offered some level of existence that I could not achieve in the shithole I lived in before.

In my case that shithole is Lubbock, TX.

A west Texas city 5 hours away from DFW, which is in many ways the bastard offspring of the worst aspects of DFW culture, a hyper-repressive nest of lower middle class anxieties with Texas University as the calm eye of the shit storm.

One of the first things I experienced in my metamorphosis into a Metroplexian was the vast sense of isolation.

Lubbock has 250,000 people approx. Dallas has 6,000,000 approx.

Yet moving from a city that I knew every good band that I could see for under $10, every bar that I could get good drinks for under $3, the best restaurants and the best people I couldn't find anything in DFW.

I did find a couple of places that brought me joy, and I will write about them later, but for years and years I couldn't find anything.

For a couple of years I was just in the incestuous world of my college, UT Dallas. There is cool stuff in Richardson, I find 3 years later, but when I first came to DFW I thought the only coffee shops in DFW where Starbuck's and that the cheapest drinks in town started at about $6.

What a terrible mistake it seemed I had made in moving to the concrete jungle. I felt the grain silo's of home calling me back to them.

I had but one hope, the Dallas Observer.

All of my fellow Metroplexians and road dogs know if this rag. It is the Dallas free paper with all the stripper adds in it. And the sex phone lines.

It also has powerful muckraking by Jim Schutze, who in the tradition of Molly Ivins, bravely calls to Texans who don't think homosexuality should be punished by public stoning.

The Dallas Observer led me to everything that I enjoyed in DFW outside of my college campus (I am a recent graduate).

It also revealed to me that Dallas had to have cool locals.

Occasionally I enjoy birding. Known to uncultured infidels as "bird watching." I am in good company as both President Jimmy Carter and Charles Darwin shared this interest.

Finding the cool locals in Dallas is like bird watching for a difficult bird. Anyone can see all the Pigeons walking about shitting on everything and begging for scraps, but the cool Dallas local is like a beautiful and delicate bird. First you must learn its call, and the cease the moment.

Dallas is full of outsiders. People move here because there are good employment prospects. My friends locally include people from all over the U.S. and the planet all called here by the need to avoid poverty.

What we outsiders find when we come here is a vast desert of highways.

Lots and lots of strip malls. What stands out most is big box stores, and chain stores. Jamba Juice anyone?

Fuck that!

It seemed like a nightmare to me. No easily identifiable sixth street like Austin, no perpetual unrolling story like New York, no weird labyrinth of coddling to Hollywood like LA, no Juarez like El Paso. Just roads, strip malls, Wal-Marts, Best-Buys.

So I found myself terribly isolated in this cesspool.

I went to UT Dallas, whose student body was mostly very serious about its academic pursuits. A clear contrast to the drunken revelries of Texas Tech in Lubbock.

So I did what everyone who is totally isolated in a crowd of six million.

I started to live vicariously on the Internet.

Eventually this led me to the Eisner Award winning comic shop Zeus, and to the North Texas Skeptics, and to the local atheist movement including the North Texas Church of Freethought, I found a comic book club ran by curator from the Dallas Museum of Art, and actually befriended one of the rare Dallas hipsters.

He was my neighbor at an apartment complex in Richardson. Through him I have found more cool dallas locals, and have begun to discover a great art and music community,

For example tomorrow I am attending this event, and for those of you who facebook I have included this link

Times Twenty Plus.....x20+

This is going to be a video art show.

It will be located at 419 North Tyler in Dallas TX. it starts at 7:00 pm on Saturday.

One of the artist, who I consider to be a powerful wizard is Thor, whose website Thorrific is definitely worth a look. Though its not for the squeemish, I recommend having no inhibition while you view Thor's artistic conjurings.

There is life in the Metroplex and from what I can tell its fucking awesome.

There are fights worth having in the metroplex, to make this city even better.

There are cool people in the Metroplex, artists, thinkers, bohemians and they gather and make merry.

In this blog I will try to channel the character Spider
created by Warren Ellis to try to with the proper vibe of angst, rage, bliss, and vision write about living in this vast engine of commerce which for better or worse tips the scales of Texas according to its whims.

This is the Metroplex. I am a Metroplexian.

Now let us endeavour together to unlock its secrets.

I will write about cool art, shops, restaurants, places to be avoided, artists, and politics.

And together we will milk this bitch for all she's worth!


  1. i'm trying to run away from this plaastic city. all the coolness in the world will never be ever to replace the fakeness it has become!

  2. I'm with you Tlakatekatl....but I'm going to die trying-to!

    The REAL Dallas is coming back!!!