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On the Street: A Light, A Rake, A Shadow...


Letter(s) (to the On the Street Penthouse Suite)

Again, this facebook thing is watering everything down. It's like analog vs. digital all over again.

#1 Whee!

Compare how many of the IMDB top 250 you've seen


I came in at 75.6%. Working next to a video store certainly did hurt things. In fact that video store might be my only connection left to A-town. I think my last name is still my secret username. That's either respect or someone hasn't cleaned out the hard drive yet.

#2 Freak Dog

thirty seven....shiiiiiiiiiiiiiit.


now go get freaky.


It was a point well taken.

The Soup

Consider this a full-on tease for the upcoming Travels with Frenchie column for the paper edition. We threw ourselves across the city until we eventually stopped on the ever-changing NE side. Though North by Northwest gets all the love, I would suggest not to sleep on the NE. Though Stone Oak is a distance from the city center it also, for the moment, suggests its own sense of home. The NE by contrast seems more like the beginning of an escape to Austin, if not New Braunfels. But there is hidden gold around there, to be sure.

In the last issue of the month there will be a pot of gold at the end of this rainbow.

The Light

At 1906 S. Flores on Second Saturday, there was a huge outpouring of people. A fabled musician was to play later that evening, as well as locals Boxcar Satan who have also “spanned time”.

And even if the music was part of the draw to get people to attend, I can't imagine photographer Thomas Cummins complaining about the traffic.

Lightboxes in the corner.

A discussion of the methods and materials.

The Rake

Banjo, harmonica, and clippings.

Eugene Chadbourne played a fine set, seeming to improvise certain song lyrics from reading out of a book. Or maybe it was a newspaper. There was a lot of “Iraq” and “bailout” being thrown around but in a random way that skated over any sort of protest song.

At the end of the set he busted out an electric hand rake and made some intense feedback sounds going over some leaves, as well as a few bicycles tied up to a pole.

The ghost of Ben Judson. Bicycles unscathed.

Ghost Taco Truck (And the Windcrest of the SW Side)

Monday night with temperatures in the high 30s might have been the worst night of the year to seek out new taco trucks on the West side. What was there on Martin Street on November 1st was not to be found again, not would I have expected it to be. But it was worth a look.

The West side is interesting in that of all of San Antonio it has the least bland repetition found in other parts of the city. Northside San Antonio could be Northside Cleveland, or any other place with the right weather, but our West side uniquely defines San Antonio. And paradoxically, it's probably because of the fact that it feels the most isolated, unchanged, and overlooked. If George Orwell was right that city politics is best understood as one big real estate development, then where does that leave us? Running around, scared of our own shadow?

This is all well known but was reinforced on a recent city-wide dragnet for taco trucks. No taco trucks were found but as we drifted further south around Nogalitos we ended up in some version of the Windcrest of the Southwest side. (There was also a chunk of city blocks named after writers. When I saw Lardner, I didn't think it was a reference to Ring Lardner but evidently it was.)

A carousel of lights.

Enjoy the holidays.

And so goes another week on the streets of San Antonio. As always, to be continued...

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