SAND. GRAVEL. ASPHALT. ICE. YOU’LL FORGET THERE’S A DIFFERENCE.
When you’re on the road, you shouldn’t be focused on what kind of road it is. And with the BMW X5 you won’t. That’s because it comes with xDrive, BMW’s intelligent all-wheel-drive system that automatically adjusts to any road condition—so you don’t have to. Add to that, no-cost maintenance for 4 years or 50,000 miles and room to seat seven, and it becomes clear the BMW X5 can take you anywhere. Comfortably.
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TEE OFF WITH ATX MAN! APRIL 29
River Place Country Club (4207 River Place Blvd)
18 HOLES FOR 18 CHARITIES. Join us at River Place Country Club as we eat, drink, and chip in for 18 Austin charities. On top of a full day of golf, check out what else we’ve got in store: 8:30am registration with breakfast and a little driving practice.
Drinks, snacks, and a new activity on every hole.
A ton of chances to win great giveaways (like a brand new car from Roger Beasley Mazda!) throughout the course.
Plus a silent auction and a gourmet lunch provided by Fleming’s to end our day!
GOLF CLASSIC 2013 powered by
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BENEFITING CHARITIES American Heart Association
Bikes for Kids
Andy Roddick Foundation
Boys and Girls Club of the Austin Area
The First Tee of Greater Austin
Austin Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure
Center for Child Protection
Austin Childrenâ€™s Museum
Hand to Hold
Back on My Feet
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Texas
Mamma Jamma Ride
The Nobelity Project The Rise School Wonders and Worries Zero Prostate Cancer Run (formerly Dash for Dads)
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atx man spring | contents
On the Cover: An Insider's Guide to the Legislature, featuring Senator Kirk Watson âžœ
Feature: After hours with the 83rd Texas Legislature.
In the Know
atx man spring | contents
in the know
18 The Buzz Roundup 20 SXSW Preview 22 Austin Food & Wine Festival 24 Austin Innovator: John Mackey 26 Siren Songs: SXSW Artists
58 Health: Combating Male Pattern Baldness
the good life
28 Nightlife: The Goodnight 30 Trailer Treats: Rancho Rio Eatery 32 Good Sport: A Fitness Lover's Guide to 2013
34 Bragging Rights: Top Running Shoes 36 Philanthropy: Texas Heritage Songwriters Hall of Fame.
style 54 Spring Style: Travel Destinations 56 Style: Fresh Haircuts for Spring
8 â€‚ ATX MAN spring 2013
60 Fitness: Rock-Hard Abs 62 Sports Report: College Baseball Scoreboard
64 Family Man: Dad 2.0 66 Finance: Savvy Planning 68 Pretty Woman: Brandi Grissom 70 Single Guy: The Dangers of an Office Romance
72 Last Word from Roy Spence on the cover // mark strama: Photo by Cody hamilton.
Previous page photo by Cody Hamilton; top photo by JoJo Marion.
w i t h ou t t h e
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THE SPRING LAUNCH PARTY MARCH 5, 6-9PM
BENEFITING HAND TO HOLD
VOLume 2, issue 4 Co-Founder and Publisher
Melinda Maine Garvey Co-Founder and Publisher
Christopher Garvey associate Publisher
Cynthia Guajardo Executive Editor
Deborah Hamilton-Lynne Art Director
Victoria Millner ad designer
Jennifer Day art assistant
Katie Holmstrom marketing and operations director
Sadie Flynn marketing and operations associate
Rhonda Rushing Account Executives
Erin Henry, Kimberly Sanderson, Charmie Stryker, 512.328.2421 associate editor
Molly McManus copy editor
Chantal Rice Contributors
Rudy Arocha, Bristol Bowen, Jill Case, Amory Casto, Andy East, Allie Eissler, Cody Hamilton, James W. Hamilton III, Tiffany Harelik, James Jeffrey, Brian Jones, Caleb Kerr, Eric Leech, Adam Linehan, Matt McGinnis, Molly McManus, JoJo Marion, Dustin McCommas, Rachel Merriman, Ryan Nail, Clay Nichols, Sarah Quatrano, Ted Sabol-Williams, Shelley Seale, Roy Spence, Steve Uhler, Kristi Willis, Jean Yoo
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Malia Bradshaw, Amory Casto, Jessica Coronado, Andy East, Adam Linehan, Leigh Anne Winger, Jean Yoo ATX Man is a free quarterly publication of AW Media Inc. and is available at more than 850 locations throughout Austin and in Lakeway, Cedar Park, Round Rock and Pflugerville. All rights reserved. For submission requirements, visit awmediainc.com/ contribute. No part of the magazine may be reprinted or duplicated without permission. Visit us online at atxman.com. 512.328.2421 â€˘ 3921 Steck Ave., Suite A111, Austin, TX 78759
From the Editor
Mention ATX Man for 10% off food from 5-9pm until April 30. Alcohol not included.
deborah hamilton-lynne Executive Editor
Photo by Destry Jaimes.
ood thing we’ve still got politics in Texas, the finest form of entertainment ever invented. –Molly Ivins Every two years, the “finest form of entertainment” comes to town and brings with it an intriguing cast of characters. Legislators and their entourages, lobbyists and their entourages, reporters and storytellers, masters of the universe and wannabe masters of the universe, fortune seekers and fortunetellers and yes, ladies of the night. Stir it all up and you have all the elements of a great morality tale: passion, drama, a fall from grace, redemption and heroics. For political junkies, the session is more fun than a three-ring circus. It is truly fascinating to watch as each session unfolds. In this issue, we explore the 83rd Texas legislative session, currently underway, and the players that make the decisions that will affect our readers—every Austinite and every Texan—for the foreseeable future. ATX Man got up close and personal with the men who represent Austin: Senator Kirk Watson, Representative Elliott Naishtat and Representative Mark Strama, as well as Ross Ramsey, executive editor of The Texas Tribune, to look at the issues that will take center stage during the session and what each of them hopes this Legislature will accomplish. We round out the section with fun facts, power players and pundits’ observations on this most fascinating form of entertainment. In case you would like to mix and mingle with the politicos, Matt McGinnis has the inside track on their favorite places to wine and dine. And Brandi Grissom, featured on our Pretty Woman Speaks Her Mind page, just happens to be a top political reporter. Spring in ATX brings many and diverse forms of entertainment beyond the golden dome. We’ve got previews of South By Southwest Interactive, Film and Music, as well as the Austin Food & Wine Festival, the Old Settler’s Music Festival, the Moontower Comedy Festival, the Austin Reggae Festival and the Austin Psych Fest. Looking for food and fun? Look no further than The Goodnight. Tiffany Harelik takes us to Austin’s newest and hottest spot for trailer treats, and we explore three spring holiday vacation scenarios and looks. And on March 17, when everyone is a little Irish, look to the Buzz for ways to celebrate. Need the advice of an expert? While spring may turn a young man’s fancy toward love, relationship columnist Eric Leech warns of the dangers of an office romance. Ryan Nail shows readers how to get ready for summer by working on rock-hard abs. Ted Sabol-Williams of Jackson Ruiz reveals five hot haircuts to update your look. And Whole Foods founder John Mackey makes his case for Conscious Capitalism. As for spring sports, are you ready to run, but not for office? We’ve got you covered for info on upcoming walks and races: 10Ks, marathons, triathlons and cycling. Look to our Guilty Pleasure and treat your feet to a great pair of running shoes. Longhorn fans (and foes) will get a heads-up on the outlook for the 2013 baseball season and the teams to watch in the Sports Report. Whatever form of entertainment—politics, food, film, music, sports—appeals to you, ATX Man has got you covered and will be there with updates throughout the spring, so check in with us on Facebook and at atxman.com for all of the latest. This spring, as the Legislature and the world come to Austin, go out and live large. Count your lucky stars you live in such an entertaining city.
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contributors Steve Uhler has written for such varied publications as New York Times Magazine, Rolling Stone and Texas Music. For this issue’s cover feature, he spent a lot of time under the Capitol building dome. “It’s a village unto itself,” he notes, “kind of a cross between a community center and a cathedral with a gift shop and cafeteria.” He also gained a new respect for the sometimes complex machinations of Texas politics. “It’s like watching a game of Quiddich. You may not understand the point, but you get caught up in the process.” Adam Linehan is a native of Austin and a student of English literature at St. Edward's University. He spent six years in the U.S. Army, serving as a combat medic in both Iraq and Afghanistan. Inspired by the many journalists he met overseas, Adam decided to leave the military to pursue a career in journalism. “As a long-time fitness enthusiast, writing this article about all of the upcoming racing events in Austin was something I really enjoyed,” Adam says. “The vibrant fitness culture is one of the things I missed most about this city during the years I was away.” JoJo Marion was born and bred in the Heart of Texas, and gained his professional chops at the Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara. Working in the great city of Austin since 2008, JoJo focuses on mobile, web, print design and photography. He is working hard on carving his own path in the creative world. This month, he got to spend time at The Goodnight. You can see his work for this month’s issue on on page 28.
Photographer Rudy Arocha is a native Texan who moved to Austin eight years ago to pursue his education in fine arts as a sculptor. He later rediscovered his passion for photography when his grandfather gave him a camera as a gift. Rudy graduated from the Art Institue of Austin and specializes in portrait photography with his main focus being musicians and artists. When not photographing, Rudy enjoys music, the outdoors and spending time with his fiancée, Maggie.
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We’ve got info on two events of interest to history buffs and photographers alike. b An evening with acclaimed photojournalists David Hume Kennerly and Dana Walker is scheduled for March 7 at UT Austin. The event is sponsored by the Friends of the LBJ Library and the Briscoe Center for American History. b News to History: Photojournalism and the Presidency exhibit at the LBJ Presidential Library, running through Oct. 1.
See you at the meating? 512-472-1813
1205 North Lamar Blvd.
Simple. SumptuouS. AuStin’S fAvorite SteAkhouSe.
Top photo by David Hume Kennerly/ The University of Texas at Austin; bottom photo courtesy Grand-Am.
Comeback Kid John Mueller of the legendary Texas pitmaster family
makes a return with a trailer and a plan for serving the best barbecue in ATX.
Check it out
For Comedian Allen Rogers, it was no joke when he opened the Rosewood Community Market to provide healthy and locally sourced produce and staples on the Eastside.
THE HARDY LAW OFFICE
Intrepid ATX Man writer Andy East ventures out looking for authentic Puerto Rican fare, and you won’t believe what he found at Chago’s Caribbean Cuisine.
Expert Tips for Marathon Runners
Running legend Dick Beardsley and the Chief Running Officer at Runner’s World magazine, Burt Yasso, share their tips for running the best marathon of your life.
Insider Report from Sundance Film Festival
Must-see features and documentaries, and all of the buzz from Park City.
SXSW concert, film and panel reviews. Foodie alerts from the Austin Food & Wine Festival. Updates on events you won’t want to miss, including the latest on the 2013 ATX Man Golf Classic.
Get the full report on the premiere 2013 Austin Grand-Am. The biggest race to hit ATX since F1 came to town!
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Million Dollar Quartet Presented by Texas Performing Arts and Broadway Across America Austin April 9 – 14, Bass Concert Hall The international Tony Award-winning musical Million Dollar Quartet comes to Bass Hall this April. Set on Dec. 4, 1956, a twist of fate brings Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins and Elvis Presley together. Sam Phillips, the “father of rock ’n’ roll,” responsible for launching the careers of each icon, brings the four legendary musicians together for an evening resulting in rock ’n’ roll jam-session history. With Hound Dog, Great Balls of Fire, Folsom Prison Blues and Blue Suede Shoes being just some of the many featured songs, Million Dollar Quartet promises to be “a buoyant new musical that whips the crowd in to a frenzy,” as reviewed by the New York Times. For tickets and more information, visit texasperformingarts.org.
Also coming up 3/6: Bone Thugs-N-Harmony, (Emo’s) 3/9: Alejandro Escavedo, (Cactus Cafe) 3/17: Eric Clapton with special guests The Wallflowers, (Frank Erwin Center) 3/20: Yes, (ACL Live at the Moody Theater) 3/29: Deftones, (ACL Live at the Moody Theater) 3/29-30: Dwight Yoakam, (Stubb’s) 4/5: Confusapalooza! with White Ghost Shivers, Whiskey Shivers, Clyde & Clem’s Whiskey Business, The Ghost Wolves, Whiskey Folk Ramblers, (Antone’s) 4/11: Slightly Stoopid, (Stubb’s) 4/12: The Scabs, (Antone’s) 4/13: Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo, (ACL Live at the Moody Theater) 4/18: Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, (One World Theatre) 4/28: Willie Nelson and Family, (the Backyard at Bee Cave) 4/30: Patti Smith, (Stubb’s) 5/4: Jitterbug Vipers, (One World Theatre)
New Tennis Center at UT
Opening this March, the Edgar O. and Melanie A. Weller Tennis Center becomes the official indoor home for the University of Texas Austin tennis teams. Construction on the $8.8 million facility began in June 2011. The center includes six indoor courts—the largest number in the region—and four outdoor courts and stadium capacity for 600 spectators. With Texas weather being unpredictable and summers brutal, players and fans alike receive the indoor option with open arms. The facility is located at the UT Golf Club in the prestigious Steiner Ranch community, presenting spectacular views of the Texas Hill Country. With the opening, it is likely the center will become a magnet for major events, yet another boost to Austin’s growing economy.
He’s baa-ack! Actor and comedian Chris Tucker will grace Austin with his high-energy stand-up show, entertaining audiences with his signature style, unforgettable voice and impeccable comedic timing. Tucker is best known for his role as Detective James Carter in the Rush Hour films, alongside Jackie Chan, and for his role as Smokey in Friday, with hip-hop mogul Ice Cube. He has also appeared in Dead Presidents, Money Talks, The Fifth Element and Jackie Brown. Most recently, Tucker appears as Bradley Cooper’s hilarious friend from the mental hospital in the film Silver Linings Playbook, which was nominated for eight Academy Awards this year. Don’t miss this unique opportunity to laugh your face off with Tucker on the comeback trail. For tickets, visit texasperformingarts.org.
18 ATX MAN spring 2013
Top photo by Jeremy Daniel.
May 3, 7 p.m., Bass Concert Hall
The One app: ReQall
Just Opened: The Chicago House
Located at 607 Trinity St. in downtown Austin, The Chicago House opened its doors in late January by the ATX Brands enterprise. The location was originally a hotel dating back to 1885, and was turned in to a boarding house in the early 20th century. Doug Guller, CEO of ATX Brands, is taking the bar back to its roots, giving it an old-timey feel. The bar serves 20 rotating craft beers, including two Cask Ale selections, while featuring top selections from Austin, as well as other breweries in the country. The food menu presents Chicago Vienna beef hot dogs, complementing the variety of beer on tap. As a sophisticated alternative to the usual Sixth Street bars, The Chicago House is a must-visit for all your hot dog and beer cravings this spring. Visit thechicagohouse.com for more information.
St Patrick’s Day: Top Picks to Get your Green On B.D. Riley’s
204 E. Sixth St., bdrileys.com
“If you can’t be in Dublin for St. Patrick’s Day, this is the place to be,” says B.D. Riley’s owner John Erwin. There’s never a cover at the pub that makes you feel as though you’re in the heart of Ireland, and St. Patty’s is no exception. Live Irish bagpipers and bands start 11 a.m. the morning of the 17th, and run until 2 a.m. the next day. You can also enjoy B.D. Riley’s awardwinning menu, featuring shepherd’s pie, bangers and mash, fish and chips, and the best corned beef and cabbage in town. And if you’re looking to drink green beer on St. Patty’s, look again. Boasting a sign year-round that reads, “If you’re looking for green beer, you’re in the wrong place,” B.D. Riley’s will serve up St. James’s Gate beer, the traditional standard. Truly an Irish pub with an amazing story, B.D. Riley’s has been open for 12 years, originally built in Dublin by five brothers who were carpenters. Erwin had the pub shipped to Austin and worked with the brothers for five weeks to reconstruct it. Named after his grandmother, who always said she would take him to Ireland but never did, the pub was built in her memory. “She’s kind of the patron saint of the pub,” Erwin explains, noting a picture of her hanging on the bar’s wall. For a more family-oriented event, B.D. Riley’s will celebrate St. Practice Day March 10, with live Irish music and food and drink, noon until midnight.
Fadó Irish Pub
Compiled by Molly McManus.
214 W. Fourth St., fadoirishpub.com/austin Sunday, March 17, Fadó’s doors open at 9 a.m., with their glorious Irish breakfast. The entire street will close down at noon to feature live music by Emergency Services Pipes and Drums Band, Mysterious Ways (a U2 cover band), multi-cultural world music, The Enemies (straight from County Drogheda, Ireland) and Sean Orr. Local radio station 101X will broadcast live from Fadó. Lively leprechauns welcome.
Stephen F. Austin Bar and Terrace 701 Congress Ave., austin.intercontinental.com
Guinness kegs will be flowing all day long, with $1 oyster shots and live music.
St. Patrick’s Day Austin 2013 at Shoal Creek Event Center 1900 N. MoPac, stpatricksdayaustin.com
Experience the luck of the Irish with the whole family at the largest St. Patrick’s Day event in Central Texas. Festivities include Gaelic lessons, children’s storytelling, music from Irish band Goitse, and performances by Celt bands, bagpipers and dancers. Irish beer and food will be available. All proceeds will benefit the Celtic Cultural Center of Texas. Visit stpatricksdayaustin.com for tickets and information.
ReQall is not your average reminder app. Not only does it let you create lists (grocery shopping, tasks, etc.), it also helps you recall various store and restaurant locations and can even transcribe a phone conversation in to text for later reference. In addition, by syncing the ReQall app with your phone contacts, you can now send simple reminders to those friends, family members and colleagues in your life that may need a gentle nudge or reminder to complete certain tasks. Download available on iTunes. More information at reqall.com.
CD: Ghosts in the Attic, Reed Turner Released Feb. 5, Ghosts in the Attic captures Reed Turner’s folk-rock/Americana style. For his album, Turner collaborated with fiddler Phoebe Hunt and bassist Pat Harris, packing in compelling instrumentals with captivatingly soulful lyrics from the singer-songwriter. A true storyteller, Turner uses words that are relevant and wise, steeped in perceptive intelligence. From Room for Doubt, which expresses the conflict between ambition and patience, to Killed that Girl (’Cause She Was Killin’ Me), which tells a murder tale with a rockabilly beat, Ghosts in the Attic will please listeners with its creative diversity and hardhitting sound. Available for purchase at reedturner.com, Waterloo Records, iTunes, Amazon and TuneCore.
Gadget: Symbol Audio’s Modern Record Console Everybody loves vinyl. And with CDs on their way to extinction, vinyl is making a comeback in a major way. Now, fuse the love for vinyl with the fact that almost all new music is bought online, and you wind up with the Symbol Audio Modern Record Console. Symbol Audio has made a beautiful home stereo, which gives you the best of both the past and present, with a turntable and tube amplifier, as well as Wi-Fi for streaming digital tunes. It’s pricey, but with a timeless look, you’ll be set on the homestereo front until they bury you with all your old Stones records. $1,800, available at symbolaudio.com.
book: Traveling at the Speed of Light, by David Sylvester Traveling at the Speed of Light chronicles recent Austin transplant David Sylvester’s bike rides across one continent to the next. From San Diego to New York, Cairo to Capetown, and Istanbul to Beijing, Sylvester sets out on a life exploration after losing a friend who was killed in the World Trade Center on 9/11. His book contains inspirational messages, stories from the many people he met throughout the world, all circling back to the theme of “finding your bike,” in other words, your passion. See Sylvester in person as he speaks about and shares photos from his adventures at the downtown Austin REI March 18 at 6:30 p.m., or at the REI Round Rock location March 26 at 6:30 p.m. Traveling at the Speed of Light is available at amazon.com.
Other Irish merriment and music: Bull McCabe’s Irish Pub, 714 Red River St.,
512.472.1170 Dog and Duck Pub, 406 W. 17th St., dogandduckpub.com
Pop some tags with 20jeans.com. This easy, simple and inexpensive website has created a new era of men’s fashion with a one-stop shop for the latest styles in men’s denim and tops, with everything available for only $20. Yes, you read right, $20 for EVERYTHING. Jeans, dress shirts, flannels, casual Ts, outerwear—you name it, they’ve got it. Check out the threads and how they are re-inventing the way men shop.
atxman.com 1 9
the buzz preview
South By Southwest 2013 ATX Man gives you the low down on the best of SXSW Interactive, Music and Film. By Andy East
Interactive March 8 – 12
“Tomorrow comes today” is the mantra, as current movers, shakers and up-and-comers in emerging technology descend upon Austin to unveil the latest in cutting-edge innovation and gadgets. From industryleading speakers and panel discussions to hands-on workshops, SXSW Interactive will allow you to tightrope the fine line between the innovators of today and the catalysts of tomorrow. Whether you are a tech-savvy industry guru or in search of the latest gadgets, check out these can’t-miss SXSW Interactive speakers.
March 9, 3:30 p.m., Austin Convention Center The 45th vice president, almost 43rd president, and renowned environmental activist returns to SXSW Interactive to offer up his analysis of the driving forces shaping the future of humankind. Don’t miss the chance to meet him afterward as he signs copies of his new book, The Future: Six Drivers of Global Change.
March 9, 2 – 3 p.m., Austin Convention Center Under the direction of this South African entrepreneur, SpaceX is boldly going where no private company has gone before. After becoming the first private company to deliver equipment to the International Space Station, Elon Musk is gearing up for human cargo. Musk also oversees Tesla Motors and SolarCity.
Shaq Goes Global: The Big Interview
March 11, 12:30 p.m., The Long Center Between being the first confirmed
20 ATX MAN spring 2013
Chuck Lorre: In Conversation with Neil Gaiman March 9, 3:30 p.m., The Long Center
Julie Uhrman of OUYA and Joshua Topolsky of The Verge March 11, 2 – 3 p.m., Austin Convention Center celebrity on the Twittersphere and having a pivotal role in new video startup Tout, it’s hard to deny that the NBA legend is also a social-media pioneer. Be sure to wait around for the Q&A session after the interview.
MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow
March 10, 12:30 p.m., Austin Convention Center Join the award-winning host of MSNBC’s The Rachel Maddow Show and indulge yourself with her trademark repartees, charisma and political acumen in a discussion on current affairs, the powers that be and her book Drift: The Unmooring of American Military Power.
Humanizing Heroes: Storytelling Beyond Sports
March 11, 2 p.m., Austin Convention Center Meet the men behind some of the most compelling works of sports storytelling, with Connor Schell of ESPN Films, Ken Rodgers of NFL Films and Ross Greenberg heading up this panel discussion.
Downloaded: The Digital Revolution
March 8 – 16
Immerse yourself in the depths of cinema heaven and capture the true spirit of moviemaking at the 20th installment of SXSW Film. With more than 100 features to be screened, 69 world premieres and a wide variety of shorts, this year’s delectable genre-encompassing selection is rife with thrills, chills and laughs. Between illustrious speakers and thought-provoking panel discussions on the future of cinema, industry professionals and movie junkies will have ample reasons to go goo-goo. New this year is the Come & Capture Film Factory, which will allow you to get your hands on the latest tools of the trade. The following events are a must.
A Conversation with Matthew McConaughey
March 10, 3:30 – 4:30 p.m., Austin Convention Center
March 12, 11 a.m. – noon, The Long Center Join Napster founders Sean Parker and Shawn Fanning; rapper Chuck D; Alex Winter, director of Napster documentary Downloaded; and others for a riveting panel discussion on the precarious state of the digital revolution. Be sure to also check out a screening of Winter’s documentary.
March 7, 10:30 a.m., Austin Convention Center On the eve of SXSW Film and Interactive, billionaire computing visionary and philanthropist Bill Gates is scheduled to deliver the closing keynote address at SXSW EDU.
Come & Capture Film Factory
March 9 – 12, 11 a.m. – 6 p.m., InterContinental Stephen F. Austin Hotel
World Premiere of The Incredible Burt Wonderstone March 8, Paramount Theatre
Red Carpet Alert
Don’t miss the world premiere of former ATX Man cover man Turk Pipkin’s film, When Angels Sing. The star-studded list of local musicians and actors who appear in the film is long and distinguished: Willie Nelson, Connie Britton and Dana Wheeler-Nicholson, Lyle Lovett, Guy Forsyth, John Pointer, Dale Watson, Ray Benson, Bob Schneider, Marcia Ball, Carolyn Wonderland, Michelle Valles, Sara Hickman and Kat Edmonson, with Elizabeth Avellan producing. Also heading down the red carpet will be Kris Kristofferson, Harry Connick Jr. and Fionnula Flannigan. It’s the premiere of this year’s South By Southwest Film Conference, with our hometown stars front and center.
Right photo by Brantley Gutierrez; other festivals compiled by Molly McManus.
March 12 – 17
Armed with more than 100 stages, 1,000 acts and a who’s who of music industry players, SXSW Music is set to take over downtown to showcase the latest and greatest in music. With a genrebending mélange of musical acts hailing from the four corners of the globe, this year’s music runs the gamut from rock to electrotango. Between mingling with thousands of industry professionals and music junkies, and the parties, networking events, speakers, panel discussions and the following events, SXSW will surely leave you wanting an encore.
March 14, 2 p.m., Austin Convention Center With a résumé that includes signing Bruce Amanda Springsteen, Billy Joel, Palmer Whitney Houston, March 13, 12:30 Aerosmith and many more, – 1:30 p.m., this legendary mogul has Austin Convention built the soundtrack of Center our lives. Don’t miss the opportunity to listen to one SXSW Music of the most visionary and Gear Expo influential people in music March 14 – 16, of our times. noon – 6 p.m., Austin Convention Center
Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds March 13, Stubb’s
Brands Are Music Fans Too, Not Just Pots of Cash March 15, 12:30 – 1:30 p.m., Austin Convention Center
More to check out Old Settler’s Music Festival April 18 – 21, Salt Lick Pavilion and Camp Ben McCulloch In its 26th year, Old Settler’s Music Festival is putting together one of its hottest lineups ever, with headliners Michael Franti, Del McCoury Band and Son Volt. Offering a one-of-a-kind festival experience that includes more than 30 superb bluegrass, roots and Americana acts performing on four stages during four
March 10, 3:30 p.m., Paramount Theatre: Red Carpet March 11, 7 p.m., Alamo Slaughter: SXSatellite March 15, 11:45 a.m., Paramount Theatre
Dave Grohl performs March 14 at the Convention Center
March 14, 11 a.m., Austin Convention Center The 2013 keynote speaker is none other than legendary grunge rocker and Foo Fighters front man, Dave Grohl. After making a name for himself in music, the ex-Nirvana drummer is now expanding his repertoire in to film, making his directorial debut at SXSW Film with the documentary Sound City.
days, and with camping in the beautiful Hill Country, Old Settler’s is a festivalgoer’s paradise. Information and passes at oldsettlersmusicfest.org.
Austin Reggae Festival April 19 – 21, Auditorium Shores All things Rasta unite for the 20th edition of the three-day Austin Reggae Festival. The Wailers, Lance Herbstrong and The Lions headline. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit austinreggaefest.com.
Moontower Comedy & Oddity Fest April 24 – 27, Paramount Theatre Some of the biggest names in comedy come to Austin this April. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to pee your pants with laughter with Jim Gaffigan, Bill Hader, Anthony Jeselnik, Dana Carvey, Amy Schumer, Jim Norton and Bill Burr, to name a few. For tickets and more information, visit comedymoontower.com.
Austin Psych Fest 2013 April 26 – 28, Carson Creek Ranch The sixth-annual psychedelic music and art festival will take place for the first time at a beautiful outdoor location. Big names this year are The Black Angels, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club and Deerhunter, along with many others. For tickets and the full lineup, visit austinpsychfest.com.
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Highlights for what to expect at the 2013 event. By Kristi Willis
Taste of Texas Kickoff Event April 26, 7 – 9:30 p.m., Republic Square Park An all-star lineup of talent from the Texas culinary scene will be serving up dishes that reflect their signature style. Under the live oak trees of Republic Square, deep in the heart of Austin, guests will get up-close and personal with chefs, tasting their way across the park with wine, beer or signature cocktail in hand, then dance the night away to live performances by Delta Spirit and Whiskey Shivers.
Except where noted, all events are at Auditorium Shores
Texas Wines: Ready for the Main Stage with Russell Kane 10 – 10:45 a.m. Everything is bigger in Texas, even the wine scene! Texas wine expert Russ Kane curates this course on Lone Star vino alongside premier wine talent from the state, including Devon Broglie, Craig Collins and June Rodil. Food & Wine’s Ray Isle will also lend his expertise to this delicious discussion.
It’s Tailgate Time with Chef Tim Love 10 – 11:45 a.m. Get fired up for the big game when barbecue bad boy Tim Love shows how to wow your home team at the grill. Whether you’re partying in the parking lot or cracking open a cold one from the couch, you’ll want to know how to cook up these sure-fire pleasers.
Sexy Leftovers with Chef Marcus Samuelsson 11 – 11:45 a.m. Learn how to give those leftovers a makeover as globe-straddling super chef Marcus Samuelsson
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Savor (VIP pass) Private Grand Tasting 11:15 a.m. – noon
Grand Tasting Noon – 4 p.m. Embark on an epicurean adventure that showcases the remarkable character and flavor of Texas at the H-E-B Grand Tasting Pavilion. In a feast for the senses spanning more than 10,000 square feet and featuring the talents of more than 80 food, wine and spirit vendors, you’ll savor bites from regional food artisans, taste signature dishes from some of Texas’ top restaurants and imbibe in some of the finest wines and spirits in the nation, including stand-out selections from regional vintners and distilleries.
Murphy’s Law: Marc Murphy’s Fool Proof Dishes Noon – 12:45 p.m. Scared you might screw up supper? Chopped celebrity judge and restaurateur Marc Murphy rolls out some recipes that beginners and experts alike will be able to pull off with gusto.
Guess What: Blind Tasting for Fun with Anthony Giglio 1 – 1:45 p.m. Join wine “wise guy” Anthony Giglio for a noncompetitive comparative tasting of wines that might be related to each other. Or not! You’ll have a lot to taste and talk about at this discussion of what really matters to the mouth.
Heads or Tails with Andrew Zimmern and Tim Love 2 – 3:45 p.m. Bizarre Foods’ Andrew Zimmern and meat master Tim Love will be leaving it up to chance when they decide what to grill up at this hands-on throwdown. From nose to tail or anything in between, you’ll get two distinct perspectives on how to take your grill skills and your menu to the next level.
Cinema Vino: Wines from the Movies with Mark Oldman
Everything’s Wild in Alaska
2 – 2:45 p.m. Sip your way through cinematic history with wine writer Mark Oldman when he takes attendees on a tour of wine types made famous in the movies. It’s a tour of discriminating palates, from James Bond to Hannibal Lecter, that’s guaranteed to entertain.
Did you know Alaska produces more than 50 percent of all seafood harvested in the United States, and all of it is sustainable? Heed the call of the wild with acclaimed chef, National Geographic fellow and sustainability advocate Barton Seaver as he leads this eye-opening expedition in to simple ways to entertain with Alaska seafood.
3 – 3:45 p.m.
Photos courtesy of Austin FOOD&WINE Festival.
Austin Food & Wine Festival
demonstrates easy ways to turn yesterday’s dinner in to tonight’s sexy supper.
Rock Your Taco 7 – 9:30 p.m., Republic Square Park Reigning champion Chef Tyson Cole will be back to defend his title for the greatest taco in the land. The country’s top chefs will go head-to-head, putting their own take on the tortilla-wrapped treat. Guests will get in on the action as well, rubbing shoulders and taking bite-sized bribes from the chefs themselves. Attendees will sample each inventive taco creation from contenders such as Marcus Samuelsson, Susan Feniger, Tim Love and more, and wash them all down with the perfect beer, wine from Chateau St. Michelle or tequila pairings. With the retro-soul of Allen Stone, Rock Your Taco promises to be an incredible evening under the Texas stars. May the best taco win!
All events are at Auditorium Shores
Red Meat & Marys with Chef Tim Love 11 – 12:45 p.m. From using the right wood to seasoning your steak, you’ve got to know what you’re doing at the grill. Sip on cold Bloody Marys while you hunker down with grill guru Tim Love for some inside info at this cocktail-fueled cookout.
Easy Like Sunday Morning with Chef Marc Murphy
For the Love of Beer with Bill Norris
11 – 11:45 a.m. Laid-back, boozy brunches are about as Austin as Longhorn games and Lady Bird Lake. Marc Murphy will ease you in to his ideas and recipes to make your next brunch the best of the best.
Noon – 12:45 p.m. Whether you’re a craft brewery aficionado or just like to drink beer, booze buff Bill Norris and a panel of regional and national craft brewmasters present some inside tips, tricks and techniques on the art of brewing this cherished beverage.
Savor (VIP pass) Private Grand Tasting
Wild Birds 3 Ways with Chef Andrew Zimmern
11:15 am – noon
1 pm – 1:45 p.m. Fearless foodie and celebrity chef Andrew Zimmern will pull out all the stops when he shows guests how to prepare some very unconventional poultry. After this
Grand Tasting Noon – 3 p.m.
Chef Graham Elliott reinvents the classics. You may be most familiar with Chef Graham Elliott from his pointed critiques of amateur cooks vying for the title of MasterChef, the Fox show on which he judges with fellow chefs Gordon Ramsay and Joe Bastianach. In April, you can experience Elliott’s wit firsthand when he heads to town and messes with tradition at the Austin Food &
Wine Festival. The owner of Graham Elliott, a two-star Michelin restaurant, as well as Grahamwich and Graham Elliott Bistro in Chicago, will put a whimsical and creative twist on familiar dishes like Caesar salad, mac and cheese, and even Rice Krispies treats during his American Classics 2.0 demo. Elliott says he enjoys changing up standard dishes because people have a frame of reference of what they expect to see.
wild demo, you’ll be in for some fresh new flavors of the feather.
Superstar Wines from the Food & Wine 2013 Wine Guide with Ray Isle. Swish, savor and get spoiled with some of the great wines from the 2013 Wine Guide, curated from 500 of the world’s greatest wineries. Each glass will be profiled with recommendations from master of the vine Ray Isle. Tickets are on sale now for $250 for a weekend Taste pass, with optional upgrades for the Taste of Texas ($150) and Rock Your Taco ($200) events. A Savor VIP pass is $850. For more information, visit austinfoodandwinefestival.com.
“It’s fun to see people’s reactions because they understand what you’re trying to do,” Elliott says. Of course, Elliott thinks it’s important for all men to be able to dish out a few great dishes of their own, particularly a good burger. “If you can take pride in making it and pull off a delicious burger, then you’ve earned your man card and can go join a sewing or knitting club, no problem,” Elliott says. Elliott is drawn to Austin as much
by the music as the food. A singer and guitarist who serves as the culinary director of Lollapalooza, Elliott is looking forward to exploring Austin’s food and music scenes while in town. “Austin is a hotbed of food and music now,” he says. “The energy is palpable.” Great food, wine and a little irreverence—sounds like a great way to spend a weekend.
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Austin Innovator Authors John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods, and Rajendra Sisodia on finding the inherent good in capitalism to benefit your company and the world. In 1981, Austin’s worst flood in history almost bankrupted the humble store that would grow in to Whole Foods Market, a $13 billion Fortune 500 company that’s now the world’s leading retailer of natural and organic grocery products. After the flood, employees, customers and neighbors pitched in to clean up the mess and more than 100 suppliers resupplied Whole Foods on credit. This inspirational and watershed moment taught CEO John Mackey a lesson that would shape his lifelong leadership philosophy: Do right by your stakeholders and they’ll do right by you. Conscious Capitalism, released in January, is a personal memoir of Mackey’s awakening as a capitalist determined to do good, as well as a bold defense and reimagining of capitalism, and a blueprint for a new system for doing business that is grounded in ethical consciousness. Co-authored with Rajendra Sisodia, cofounder of the Conscious Capitalism Institute, Mackey sets out to explain how business owners can liberate the heroic spirit of business and find the inherent good in capitalism. Prior to launching a 21-city book tour, Mackey sat down at a book chat with ATX Man and his friend Roy Spence of GSD&M. ATX Man: What is conscious capitalism? Authors: Conscious capitalism is a philosophy of doing business that suggests that business has a higher purpose beyond profits and that creating value for all stakeholders is the best way to create value for investors. Such businesses are led by highly conscious individuals who are passionate about the company’s purpose and are driven to serve. These businesses foster cultures that are based on trust, transparency and caring.
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AM: What’s wrong with capitalism and business today that we can change? Authors: The two things that need changing are the narrative about capitalism and business in our culture, and the fact that most business people operate with a low level of consciousness about the true purpose and potential of business to create multifaceted value in the world. The existing narrative is that business and capitalism are based on selfishness and greed, but that works in the overall public interest because of the so-called invisible hand of the market. This narrative fails to capture the true value of free-enterprise capitalism, that business is good because it creates value, it is ethical because it is based on voluntary exchange, it is noble because it can elevate our existence and it is heroic because it lifts people out of poverty and creates prosperity. AM: Does business deserve its bad rap? Authors: We don’t think so. A few egregious examples of bad corporate conduct have created a broad negative perception about business that is simply not accurate. The vast majority of businesses are ethical and well-meaning. However, business people hurt themselves and their businesses when they adhere to a narrative that proclaims that the sole purpose of the business is to make profits for shareholders. This breeds resentment and envy. The real purpose of business is to create value for all stakeholders and thereby improve the lot of humanity. AM: In what ways can we do business differently to create a win-win for all instead of winning for a few at the expense of others? Authors: If you look for trade-offs, you will always find them, that is guaranteed. But if you look for win-win synergies, more often than not, you will find those too. Human creativity is essentially unlimited, especially when it is motivated by a deeper purpose than just self-interest. Conscious businesses are able to look at every decision through this lens and craft win-win solutions for their stakeholders.
creates value for all of our stakeholders. Let us take a simple example: selling organic produce. This creates value for our customers by providing them high-quality foods that help nourish them, enhance their health and well-being and which taste great. This also creates value for our team members by helping provide them with jobs, benefits, good working conditions and purposeful work. Our suppliers and farmers who sell us the organic produce benefit from their trade with Whole Foods, which helps them to flourish. Selling organic produce helps our company to succeed financially and this creates value for our investors. As our company is financially prosperous, we are enabled to be good citizens in our communities through philanthropy and voluntary involvement. Part of our profits is also taxed away by various governments, some of this money being used in constructive ways to help our larger communities. Finally, selling organic produce uses far less fossil fuels and chemical fertilizers and pesticides, which lessens negative impacts on the environment. Customers, team members, investors, suppliers, communities and environment all benefit from their exchanges with Whole Foods.
AM: How does Whole Foods create win-win value for all stakeholders? Authors: Virtually everything that Whole Foods does
AM: In what ways can customers, not just business leaders, participate in conscious capitalism? Authors: People everywhere are becoming more
conscious, including in their role as customers. This means they understand and take responsibility for all the consequences of their actions and have a finer sense of right and wrong. Before selecting companies to buy from, customers should consider the totality of what the firm stands for. They are voting with their dollars every time they make a purchase, so they should choose wisely. Customers today are more intelligent, discerning, informed and connected than ever before and their standards are higher than ever. This affords them enormous power to impact corporate actions and reward the companies that are aligned with their value systems. AM: What are a few companies that practice conscious capitalism and in what ways do they do so? Authors: Whole Foods does so by focusing on the health and well-being of people, the food system and the planet. The Container Store strives to make people feel happier by becoming better organized. Google has brilliantly organized the world’s vast amount of information and made it easily accessible and useful. Southwest Airlines has brought the freedom to fly to ordinary people. AM: What does a conscious approach to leadership involve? What are some examples of conscious leaders and why? Authors: Conscious leaders combine analytical intelligence with high levels of emotional, spiritual and systems intelligence. They care deeply about the purpose of the company and lead by example. They are not commandand-control leaders and do not use “carrots and sticks” to motivate people. Instead, they mentor, motivate, develop and inspire others. Examples of such conscious leaders include Herb Kelleher of Southwest Airlines, Ratan Tata of Tata Sons, Kip Tindell of The Container Store and Howard Schultz of Starbucks. AM: How can companies embrace a conscious culture and be profitable at the same time? Authors: There is no contradiction between a conscious culture and profitability. Conscious cultures are about trust, authenticity and transparency, but they are also about accountability and learning. People in such cultures are largely self-organizing, self-motivating and selfmanaging. AM: What would you say have been the greatest challenges of running a conscious, purpose-driven business? Authors: The biggest challenge is struggling against the negative narratives about business and capitalism that currently exist, that business is based on greed, selfishness and exploitation, and that it is all about money and profits. This mostly inaccurate narrative makes people cynical and distrustful about business and makes it more difficult to successfully communicate higher purpose and an integrative stakeholder philosophy because a large number of people just flatly refuse to believe it. It contradicts their mental model and so it is rejected out of hand.
The Four Tenets Of Conscious Capitalism Higher Purpose
Business has a much broader positive impact on the world when it is based on a higher purpose that goes beyond only generating profits and creating shareholder value. … A compelling sense of higher purpose creates an extraordinary degree of engagement among all stakeholders and catalyzes creativity, innovation and organizational commitment. Purposeful companies ask questions such as these: Why does our business exist? Why does it need to exist? What core values animate the enterprise and unite all of our stakeholders?
Conscious businesses recognize that each of their stakeholders is important and all are connected and interdependent, and that the business must seek to optimize value creation for all of them. … When conflicts and potential tradeoffs arise between major stakeholders, conscious businesses engage the limitless power of human creativity to create win-winwin-win-win-win (or Win6) solutions that transcend those conflicts and create a harmony of interests among the interdependent stakeholders. Conscious Leadership
Conscious leaders are motivated primarily by
AM: Isn’t business really just about profits, and social good is for nonprofits and government to worry about? Authors: Absolutely not! It is business far more than governments and nonprofits that elevates humanity and enables us to realize our potential. And businesses create far more than profits; they can also create intellectual, social, emotional, spiritual, cultural, physical and ecological value. Poorly run, uninspired businesses can also destroy all these kinds of value, including financial. Even governments and most nonprofits rely, ultimately, on the profit generated by businesses in order to fund their activities. AM: What will this book help people achieve? Authors: It will help people recognize that business is the ultimate positive sum game. It will challenge prevailing mental models that see the interests of stakeholders as inherently opposed to one another. It offers people a clear roadmap to transform their own businesses and put them on a path of sustained value creation for all stakeholders, thereby ensuring their long-term success and continued relevance. It offers guidance on how entrepreneurs can embed these principles in the DNA of their businesses from the outset. Finally, it is a guide to personal growth and development for leaders at all levels in all sectors of society. AM: Why do you think the word “capitalism” was the No. 1 most-searched word on Merriam-Webster’s website in 2012? Authors: We think it is indicative of a real struggle in many people’s minds to understand what capitalism really is and reconcile its positive impacts with what they see as some of its contradictions or negative side effects. It is said that fish are the last to discover water. Those of us who have been fortunate enough to be born in countries that
service to the firm’s higher purpose and creating value for all stakeholders. They reject a zero-sum, trade-off oriented view of business and look for creative, synergistic win-win-win approaches that deliver multiple kinds of value simultaneously. In addition to high levels of analytical, emotional and spiritual intelligence, leaders of conscious businesses have a finely developed systems intelligence that understands the relationships between all of the interdependent stakeholders. Conscious Culture and Management
Conscious cultures naturally evolve from the enterprise’s commitments to higher purpose, stake-
holder interdependence and conscious leadership. While such cultures can vary quite a bit, they usually share many traits, such as trust, accountability, transparency, integrity, loyalty, egalitarianism, fairness, personal growth and love and care. By embracing the principles of Conscious Capitalism, businesses can bring themselves in to close harmony with the interests of society as a whole and align themselves with the evolutionary changes that we humans have been experiencing. Adapted from Conscious Capitalism by John Mackey and Rajendra Sisodia
cherish economic and political freedom sometimes don’t recognize or appreciate what we have. Capitalism is the greatest system for human cooperation and achievement ever conceived, yet so few of us truly appreciate its power and majesty. AM: How is conscious capitalism different from CSR (corporate social responsibility)? Authors: The key difference is that CSR is often grafted on to an existing approach to business that is fundamentally out of harmony with the real needs of stakeholders. Many profit-driven businesses invest in CSR initiatives to compensate for some of the harm they may be causing some stakeholders as a result of their core business, or as a way of earning goodwill that is disconnected from that core business. Conscious companies are societally aligned to begin with; even if they don’t spend any money on philanthropy, they are still socially responsible. AM: What are some of the first steps anyone in business can start taking today to becoming more conscious? Authors: It has to start with purpose. Leaders must begin by asking existential questions such as “Why does our company exist?” “Why does it need to exist?” “Why would it be missed if it disappeared?” The answers to such questions must come through the collective efforts of all of the company’s stakeholders, not just its leaders. Once the company has articulated a compelling and authentic purpose, it must work to cultivate a stakeholder mindset among its team members. This requires the cultivation of what we call a systems mind, which is able to see the many interdependencies that exist between stakeholder interests. The company must appoint leaders who are passionate about its purpose, who are accountable and results-oriented while being caring and trusting.
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the buzz siren songs
SXSW 2013 Local artists take the stage in March. Carrie Rodriguez Carrie Rodriguez has a decade-long history of collaborating with a list of legendary musicians, including Chip Taylor, Lucinda Williams and Alejandro Escovedo. Her songs are often deeply personal expressions of love and yearning, replete with fiddles, steel guitars and vivid images of rustic life. First-time listeners of Rodriguez’s music will at once detect an undeniable virtuosity in her sound, as well as a style heavily inspired by the Americana tradition. After nearly a decade of living in New York City, the Austin native returned home in 2010 to create her latest album, Give Me All You Got, considered by many to be her most mature record to date. “Give Me All You Got speaks to the overall feeling of the record,” Rodriguez says. “I’m not holding anything back, and I’m kind of expecting the same from whoever’s listening.” Rodriguez attributes a lot of her inspiration for the album to her return to Austin, saying, “I love the slow pace of Austin. It really allows me a lot of space to be creative in, more than any other place I’ve lived.” And since she’s here to stay, you will have plenty of opportunities to catch her live and experience her captivating performance, which has propelled her to national fame. If you’re not heading for the hills during South By Southwest this year, Rodriguez’s is a show you definitely won’t want to miss. For more information on shows and times, visit carrierodriguez.com.
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Suzanna Choffel Suzanna Choffel is currently one of Austin’s brightest-burning stars. In 2012, she stepped in to the international spotlight with a commanding performance on NBC-TV’s The Voice, which earned her a place on Blake Shelton’s team, as well as praise from critics and fans throughout the world. A range of influences from jazz to trip-hop lends her music an effervescent quality fans of contemporary pop music will surely appreciate. Choffel’s latest album, Steady Eye Shaky Bow, puts her smoky, soulful voice on intimate display against a backdrop of elegantly understated melodies. Check it out on her website, suzannachoffel.com, and get information on upcoming tour dates and locations.
The Whiskey Sisters Nine months ago, Teal Collins (The Mother Truckers) and Barbara Nesbitt (Tim Flannery & the Lunatic Fringe) joined forces to create this six-piece Americana rock ’n’ roll band. In that short time, The Whiskey Sisters have drawn a huge local following, packing the house during their regular gigs at the Continental Club. A blend of electric guitar rifts, country rhythms and beautiful vocal harmonies produces a sound that is Texan through and through. The band released their debut album last month, just in time for SXSW. Check out their website, thewhiskeysisters.com, to hear samples of their music and find out when and where they’ll be playing.
Rodriguez photo by Sarah Wilson; Choffel photo by Steven Alcala; Whiskey Sisters photo by Christopher Durst.
By Adam Linehan
The Goodnight is the magnificent aftermath of a few too many happy hour cocktails and a spirited conversation about a love for fine foods and fine fun. Austin’s newest addition to the multi-activity lounge concept, The Goodnight opened in The Village on Anderson Lane in November 2012, and bills itself as “absurdly magnificent.”
Bringing good food, good times and revelry to Anderson Lane.
Stepping into The Goodnight is like stepping into an adult playground with an 80-person social dining room, a groovy bar and lounge where Dean Martin might feel at home, eight vintage bowling lanes, four custom billiards tables, two table-tennis courts, shuffleboard tables, an outdoor deck and two private conference parlors. There is also constant live music and DJ mixing on the calendar. As the website states: “Fueled by a passion for
By Shelley Seale, Photos by JoJo Marion
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not taking ourselves too seriously, we seriously found everything that embodies revelry and packaged it under one roof.” The key clientele are people who are looking to do more than just sit and drink, says General Manager Mo Wark. “The idea is we are much more than a bar and restaurant,” Wark says. “We keep one hand occupied with food and drink and your other hand occupied with games.” Wark, who comes from a service-industry background spanning 16 years, admits that the gaming isn’t bright and shiny, but insists that is part of the charm—and part of what makes The Goodnight a quintessential Austin place. “We do not have professional-quality table games, and our bowling alley is old and worn in, but it’s fun,” he says. “We want to offer an upscale,
laid-back, professional and fun environment. Some of those words may seem like oxymorons, but if you’ve lived in Austin long enough, then you know it exists.” Wark says his team built The Goodnight because they love to have fun, but ultimately, they take quality and service very seriously. The newest addition is a karaoke room, which was completed in February, and they are in the process of adding plants to the patio to make it a more lush and inviting space for springtime. A native Austinite, Wark graduated from the University of Texas with a liberal arts degree, which he admits has not been very useful in his chosen career, except as a conversation starter. He has worked throughout Austin in the restaurant service industry, and has done everything from bartending and serving to management. He spent many years at Guero’s Taco Bar, and oversaw the opening of Uncle Billy’s on Lake Travis. “It’s really exciting seeing how far Austin has come in the last five to 10 years with General restaurants and bars,” he says. Manager Mo Wark “This city is so supportive of new local businesses.” Wark is also a big foodie himself, frequently visiting favorite restaurants throughout town, such as Buenos Aires Cafe, East Side Show Room and Uchiko (when he can afford it). Perhaps this is why Wark strives to offer an above-the-bar dining experience, with elegant comfort food that people can recognize, but with a twist to surprise the palate. With items like chicken-fried antelope, bison meatball sliders and a braised pork belly pizza, the menu definitely surprises. Case in point: the chicken-fried antelope, a free-range antelope steak deep fried, covered in jalapeño gravy and served with a side of goat cheese mashed potatoes. Wark’s pick for a drink from the bar would be the Cajun Lemonade, using fresh-squeezed lemonade infused with serrano peppers, and a shot of Maker’s Mark bourbon. “We hope to bring food and drink to our customers that is consistently delicious,” he says.
Cajun Lemonade 2 cups sugar 4 serranos, sliced 2 ounces Maker’s Mark (or your favorite bourbon) splash of soda Make a spicy serrano simple syrup by boiling two cups of water and two cups of sugar in a pot. Add four sliced serranos (more or less depending on how spicy you want it) and heat over low-medium heat. Let this sim-
mer over low heat for about 10 minutes to get the serrano flavor infused. Strain the serranos and pour the simple syrup into any container to let it cool to room temperature. This is great for lots of drinks and can be done with your favorite flavor (cucumber, cranberries, strawberries, etc). Mix 1 ounce of the simple syrup with the bourban and soda in a tall glass over ice. Fill to top with fresh lemonade and garnish with a lemon wedge. Stir and enjoy.
Rancho Rio Eatery Austin’s newest food-trailer destination. By Tiffany Harelik
Rancho Rio Eatery is Austin’s newest food trailer park. The lot is owned by Andy and Marsha Osborn, and Andy’s partner, Lee Lundin, of AJL Advertising. The team was ready to give the lot a shot at becoming an attraction for all the students and faculty from the University of Texas. They first opened the gates on West Campus in January
and held a grand opening mid-February to celebrate the flavors of 11 food trucks. You’ll recognize some trailers like Wurst Tex and the Mighty Cone from their former locations at the iconic South Congress trailer lot. Other trucks are brand-new concepts putting their cooks’ culinary skills to the test. Located on the corner of 26th and Rio Grande, this lot has something for everyone, from pizza to sandwiches, smoothies to waffles, coffee to Thai, and ice cream to sausages. You’ll need to make several trips to try everything this foodie destination has to offer.
Fat Tony’s Brooklyn House of Munch: Two brothers from Gravesend, Brooklyn, NY, are gaining popularity in the food-trailer scene for their fried pizza balls and traditional Brooklyn Italian food. From their homemade dough, to their Nonna’s “gravy” (marinara), they treat you like family when you eat at their trailer. Often overheard: “Mangia bene, vivi felice,” which means eat well, live happy.
Short Bus Subs: Brothers Dane and Eric Klusman, along with Ryan Campion, had a dream to “reinvent the sack lunch.” Their deli, chicken and veggie sandwiches all come with scholarly names. You might try the Principal, the Teacher’s Pet or the Hot Teacher, but it’s their Summer Vacation that gets my vote. It’s honey ham, provolone, Parmesan, marinara, pineapple and crushed red pepper on a six-inch sub for $5.40, or a footlong for not quite $10.
Velveteen Coffee House: Husband and wife Uri and Esther Ondras own one of the newest trailer businesses on the lot. Their passion for good coffee shines through with their standards of using only organic, fair-trade beans provided by local roasters. Check out the sea salt and caramel latte alongside one of their baked goods for a morning walk to campus. Blenders and Bowls: This food truck gives you fresh and healthy options that are good for breakfast, post workout or for a walk across the university. Founded on the concept of serving acai (ah-sigh-ee) bowls and smoothies, the menu offers clean energy at an affordable price. Although I love everything on the menu, my personal favorite is the O.G. This bowl has a frozen base of organic acai, strawberry, banana and apple juice, and is topped with hemp granola, strawberries, bananas and Round Rock Honey.
Wunder Waffle: Ashley Wearing has served waffles before, but this is her first trailer concept. A huge hit at the food trailer park, Wunder Waffles typically are eaten for dessert with sweet toppings. But sometimes the 50-pound waffle iron from Germany is used to cook up unique dinners like a cornbread waffle with pulled pork, or the popular chicken and waffles. Ham It Up: Owner Keith Elkins (of local news KEYE fame) has made a name for himself not only in the newsroom, but in the kitchen as well. His Southern home-cooking menu contains things like grilled cheese and ham, biscuits with sausage and eggs, custom omelets, pulled-pork sandwiches and hamburgers. Recently, he is rumored to have sold three complete hams. The peanut butter pie, originally made for his girlfriend, is something his fans say is to die for.
Thai of the Town: Thai Dave saw the ad for the
Velveteen House owners Uri and Esther Ondras
30 ATX MAN spring 2013
trailer-park lot and bought a plane ticket from California to Austin. Bringing with him his woks and his soy sauce, Dave proceeded to cook for the landowners, winning over Andy Osborn, who “doesn’t like Thai,” but now cannot stop eating it. Thai Dave’s Pad Thai is a favorite among his patrons.
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Thai Dave of Thai of the Town
His curry made me understand why his trailer is definitely the Thai of the Town.
Photos by Tiffany Harelik.
Firefly Pies: Wood-fired and brick-oven baked, this Neapolitan-style pizza can’t be found just anywhere. The newest special, the Herbivore, contains mushroom cream sauce with Romano, Parmesan, olives, semi-dried tomatoes, spinach, mushrooms, roasted garlic and feta cheese. Meat lovers will appreciate the use of artisanal meats from local, organic and sustainable farms. Wurst Tex: Purveyors of gourmet sausage sandwiches, Wurst Tex got their following from their time at the iconic South Congress trailer lot. The El Wursto is a crowd pleaser and contains chicken and turkey sausage with mild habanero, green chiles and tequila, but the Veggiano gets my vote as the best sausage sandwich on the lot. This vegetarian sausage is comprised of eggplant, red peppers, fennel and garlic. Mighty Cone: A trendsetter among fine-dining restaurants with his famous Hudson’s on the Bend, Jeff Blank is also one of the founding fathers of the trailer-food industry in Austin. The Hot and Crunchy Mighty Cone is the trailer’s namesake and
claim to fame. Sassy fried chicken wrapped in a tortilla cone topped with a mango-jalapeño slaw and ancho sauce makes for a great fast food you can take on the go, or enjoy slowly at the picnic tables.
Cow Tipping Creamery: This family-owned and -operated ice-cream truck offers creative artisanal flavors like Aztec chocolate and balsamic strawberry. The eggnog, pumpkin and fig soft serve is bound to be a favorite this fall. The Indonesian vanilla bean is one of their most popular flavors, and they have been known to blend it with a slice of red velvet cake and organic whole milk for a shake that will blow your mind. Recipes from several of these trailers and more can be found in the Trailer Food Diaries cookbook series. Stay tuned to trailerfooddiaries.com or follow @trailerfood on Twitter to keep up with local food-truck histories and recipes.
❱❱ For more food truck recommendations, check out trailerfooddiaries.com, or follow along on twitter @trailerfood.
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Spring Race Guide
don’t have to be a pro to participate. Expect a challenging ride along the Perdenales River. To register, visit mellowclassic.blogspot.com.
Texas Independence Day 5K Run March 2, 8 a.m., Congress Avenue Bridge Celebrate Texas’ independence from Mexico with a 5K run through downtown. To register, visit active.com/running/austintx/texas-independence-day-5k-run-2013.
Concussion Awareness 5K Run
Everything you need to navigate races, rides and competitions.
March 3, 10 a.m., location TBD Governor Rick Perry has declared March 3 official Concussion Awareness Day in Texas. Help raise awareness by taking part in this 5K run. To register, visit concussioncompliance.com/ concussionawareness5k.
By Adam Linehan
RAAM Texas Cycling Challenge
In a city sustained on silicone and breakfast tacos, exercise remains a necessary component of daily life for many health-conscious Austinites who cherish the city’s extensive network of trails, bike lanes and wide-open green spaces. With the number of adventure races growing in recent years (think Tough Mudder, Warrior Dash and Muddy Buddy), more people are being drawn in to Austin’s fitness culture. “People who haven’t really run before are coming in to buy shoes all the time. They want to take part in the adventure,” says Travis Johnson, a sales consultant at Rogue Running. And this year, there will be no shortage of opportunities for Austinites to lace up and put their efforts to the test. Whether you like to run, bike, swim, climb, crawl through mud or all of the above, there’s a race for you. As a matter of fact, 2013 is going to be full of them. If you’re hungry for competition, or simply eager to get out and support a great cause, feast your eyes on this:
March Mellow Johnny’s Spring Classic March 1 – 4, Dripping Springs This mountain-biking event attracts professionals from throughout the world, but you
32 ATX MAN spring 2013
The Color Run 5K
March 9, Marble Falls Ever wonder what Lance Armstrong’s secret was? Training in the Texas Hill Country, of course! Enjoy the beautiful terrain during this weekend event consisting of three non-competitive rides, as well as two endurance races. To register, visit raamchallenge.com.
Warrior Dash March 16, 10 a.m., 578 Hwy. 153, Smithville With events such as the Muddy Mayhem, Warrior Roast and Storming Normandy, this dynamic adventure race should satisfy anyone seeking an intense physical challenge. To register, visit warriordash.com.
Head for the Cure Central Texas 5K Run/Walk March 17, 8 a.m., Camp Mabry Join the fight against brain cancer by taking part in this 5K run/walk. To register, visit headforthecure.org.
The Rosedale Ride March 23, 8:30 a.m., Samsung Austin Take part in the 19th-annual ride to support Austin’s Rosedale School, which accommodates children with multiple disabilities. Routes include 20-, 42-, and 62-mile options. To register, visit rosedaleride.blogspot.com.
Manzano, this event includes a one-mile run, a one-mile relay and a 400-meter kids race. To register, visit manzanomile.com.
Rogue Trail Series: The MAZE March 24, Walnut Creek Hit the trail in either a 10K or 30K race. This is the first event in a three-part series hosted by Austin’s Rogue Running. To register, visit roguerunning.com.
The Electric Run March 30, Travis County Expo Center Grab your glow sticks and strap on your running shoes for this 5K run/walk through a neon wonderland. It’s like a rave, but healthy. To register, visit electricrun.com.
The ASH Dash 5K Bunny Run
March 23, 9 a.m., Texas School for the Deaf Hosted by Olympic silver medalist Leo
March 30, 8 a.m., Austin State Hospital Campus
Check out this 5K run/walk through Hyde Park to support children and adults with mental illness. Stick around for the Easter egg hunt that follows. To register, visit ashvolunteers.org.
The Funky Chicken Coop Tour March 30, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Pick up a map and take a bicycle tour of Austin’s funkiest chicken coops. Hope you’re as “eggcited” about this one as we are! To purchase a map, visit austincooptour.org.
April The Juggernaut 5K April 6, Stunt Ranch Get muddy, have fun and support the fight against breast cancer. This is a teamoriented event, so tell your friends. To register, visit beatthejuggernaut.com.
Statesman Capital 10,000 April 7, 8 a.m., Barton Springs Road and South Congress Avenue For 36 years, the Austin AmericanStatesman has kicked off spring with the biggest 10K in the entire state of Texas. Whether you’re a competitive runner ready to break records, or someone just looking to take part in a great Austin tradition, this is the race for you. As the fifth-largest 10K event in the nation, you can expect a crowd of about 25,000 people, consisting of walkers, joggers and runners from throughout the world. Traffic will be at its worst that day, so you might as well lace up and hit the pavement with the rest of us. To register, visit statesman.com.
Austin Rattler 100K
keep you motivated, stages host some of Austin’s best local rock ’n’ roll bands, set up every half mile along the flat, wide-open course. Participants will have the chance to compete or simply take their time and enjoy the music. Prize money is guaranteed to the first five males and females to make it across the finish line. First place in each category wins $5,000. To register, visit austin1020.com.
Pure Austin Splash & Dash Summer Series April 16 through September, Pure Austin Quarry Lake Swim and run in this multi-sport event that will take place every third Tuesday of the month, April through September. For information, visit pureaustin.com.
April 13, Rocky Hill Ranch As the first event in the Leadville Qualifying Series, mountain bikers can expect their skills and endurance to be tested on this rugged backcountry course. To register, visit leadvilleraceseries.com.
Austin 10/20 April 14, The Domain Haven’t made it up to The Domain yet? Well, here’s your chance. The Austin 10/20 is not just a race; it’s a music festival. To
BP MS 150 April 20 – 21, Houston to Austin If you’ve been putting in the miles and you’re prepared to go big, take part in this 180-mile journey from Houston to Austin and help raise funds for National MS Society: Lone Star. To register, visit biketxh.nationalmssociety.org.
Austin Autism Bike Ride April 21, Georgetown Take part in this sixth-annual ride to support autism awareness. Routes range from a 2-mile family ride to a 62-mile trek around rural Georgetown. To register, visit austinautismbikeride.org.
Rogue Trail Series: The LOOP April 21, Emma Long Park Hit the trail in either a 10K or 30K race. This is the second event in a three-part series hosted by Austin’s Rogue Running. To register, visit roguerunning.com.
Run To The Sun April 20 – 21, Enchanted Rock This 95-mile overnight relay benefits the Beyond Batten Disease Foundation. The race starts at beautiful Enchanted Rock and ends at Laguna Gloria in Austin. Teams will consist of six to 10 members. To register, visit runtothesunrelay.com.
Tuhabonye photo courtesy of Holly Reed Photography.
Gilbert Tuhabonye is the owner and founder of Gilbert’s Gazelles, a local training camp for runners looking to benefit from the state-ofthe-art coaching techniques of a former NCAA All-American athlete. Proven time and time again to be one of Austin’s most effective running coaches, Tuhabonye is able to offer his students expert instruction, as well as an inspirational attitude shaped by a remarkable childhood spent in East Central Africa. Raised in the mountainous country of Burundi, Tuhabonye endured unimaginable hardships before ultimately making it to the United States to emerge as one the nation’s top athletes. Today, he uses his skills and experience to help runners meet whatever goals they may have, whether they are looking to run their first 5K or improve their marathon time. One of the most distinguishing aspects of Tuhabonye’s coaching technique is the special emphasis he places on form and biomechanics. Although his classes are conducted in a group setting, Tuhabonye and his team of coaches take time to focus on each runner, ensuring they run to the best of their abilities. “Our motto is Run with Joy,” Tuhabonye says, “and you cannot have joy when running is painful. The key is to focus on form.” Beyond coaching, Tuhabonye spearheads a campaign to bring clean water systems to Burundi with the Gazelle Foundation. Every year in October, thousands of people show up to take part in Run for the Water to raise money for the foundation, and so far, it’s been a great success. For more information on Gilbert’s Gazelles and the Gazelle Foundation, visit gilbertsgazelles.com.
April 20 – 21, Longhorn River Ranch This is the mother of adventure races. If you’re unfamiliar with this event, check out the video on the website and get pumped. To register, visit toughmudder.com.
Hell Run April 27, Big Longhorn Ranch Rock music, beer and a 3.15-mile obstacle course—this doesn’t sound like hell; it sounds like a great time. We recommend wearing clothes you don’t intend to keep. To register, visit hellrun.com.
Schlotzsky’s Bun Run April 28, 7 a.m., Auditorium Shores Run to support the Young Men’s Business League’s Austin Sunshine Camps in this 31st-annual event. With a 1K, 5K and 10K option, there’s a race for everyone, including your dog. To register, visit bunrun.com.
May The Color Run 5K May 4, location TBA This is something fun for the whole family. Show up wearing a white T-shirt and finish the race looking like a Jackson Pollock painting. To register, visit thecolorrun.com.
The Rookie Triathlon May 5, Decker Lake This is a great triathlon event for beginners and experts alike. The course consists of a 300-meter run, 11.2-mile bike ride and a 2-mile run. To register, visit therookietri.com.
Muddy Buddy May 11, Flat Creek Crossing Ranch Two-person teams take on a series of military-style obstacles along this dynamic mud-filled course. There are three separate events to choose from: the Muddy Buddy Run, the Muddy Buddy Bike and Mud Run, and the Mini Muddy Buddy (for the kids). To register, visit muddybuddy.com.
Armadillo Hill Country Classic May 11, Liberty Hill Take in the beautiful Hill Country and support cycling programs throughout Texas. To register, visit armadilloclassic.net.
Texas Spartan Sprint May 18 – 19, 8 a.m., Reveille Peak Ranch For all of you cross-fit lovers, this Reeboksponsored event is a great way to put your training to the test. Conquer this course and win an invitation to take part in the even tougher Super Spartan. To register, visit spartanrace.com.
Capital of Texas Triathlon May 27, Lady Bird Lake Since 1991, the CapTexTri has given triathletes the opportunity to swim, bike and run in a highly competitive race through downtown Austin. The race begins with a swim through Lady Bird Lake. Distances for all skill levels available. To register, visit captextri.com.
❱❱ Get the full list of events for the rest of the year at atxman.com.
Jack Be Nimble... Jack be quick! Enhance agility on your runs with lightweight construction from Brooks. Photo by Caleb Kerr
Brooks PureConnect2 running shoes Right in line with the minimalist trend taking over the running community, these lightweight shoes from Brooks’ PureProject collection offer a featherweight feel and a pliable base. Want to feel the nuances of a run but aren’t ready to join the barefoot club just yet? The PureConnect2 features a split toe groove that extends toward the middle of your foot, giving you the feeling of more freedom and less shoe. Because of their minimalist construction with fewer materials, runners should expect these shoes to last approximately 250 to 300 miles. ($89.95, available at Luke’s Locker, 115 Sandra Muraida Way, 512.482.8676)
34 ATX MAN spring 2013
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Ronnie Dunn Country music legend to be inducted in the Texas Heritage Songwriters Hall of Fame. By Bristel Bowen Ronnie Dunn was introduced to Kix Brooks in 1990 by the Ronnie Dunn head of Arista Records, and the rest is history. His songs have been at the top of the country-music singles charts 23 times, and Brooks & Dunn is the industry’s most award-winning bunch, which is what makes this honor stand out for me. My duo of all time, including being named Entertainers of the father was an aspiring country singer and a Texas-born cowboy. I Year four times. tell people today that I look at the world through Texas eyes. It Born in Coleman, TX, Dunn traveled a winding road that would take a book to explain to most people outside of Texas what took him from West Texas to New Mexico, Arkansas and that means, but if you’re a Texan, it’s unspoken and you get it. Oklahoma and through 13 schools in 12 years. For a long time, music and his Texas roots were the only constants in his life. AM: How is your creative process as a songwriter affected by With a monumental farewell tour in 2010, Brooks & Dunn said your Texas roots? goodbye to their fans as a duo and welcomed the new chapter RD: The radio was always on in our car. I grew up riding for of their careers as solo artists. Dunn then released his first hours across the endless, empty West Texas countryside lissolo album, which earned him Grammy nominations for Best tening to Roy Orbison, Sonny James, Jim Reeves, Ferlin Husky, Country Song and Best Country Solo Performance. Merle Haggard, Buck Owens and Marty Robbins. My father As one of country music’s most respected and successful and I didn’t talk a lot; we listened to country music together. songwriters, Dunn will be inducted in to the Texas Heritage Songwriters Hall of Fame March 3 during a star-studded AM: Do you have a favorite Texas music memory? ceremony and awards show at ACL RD: My Texas music memories and Live at the Moody Theater. Because experiences are endless. I think being Dunn’s music journey began in Texas, put in the Houston Rodeo Performers The annual Texas Heritage Songwriters Association Hall of he says he is especially proud to come Hall of Fame as Brooks & Dunn with Fame Awards Show, March 2-3, back to Austin to accept his award. George Strait, Elvis, Charlie Pride and ACL Live at the Moody Theater Reba was really a good one. ATX Man: What does it mean to you to This two-day event, taking place March 2 and 3, be inducted in to the Texas Heritage AM: After the success of your first solo will honor artists Roger Miller, Ronnie Dunn and Sonny Curtis. The celebration begins Saturday Songwriters Hall of Fame? And with album, including two Grammy nomiwith a V.I.P. sponsored event, the Darrell K. fellow artists Sonny Curtis and the late nations, we can’t wait to see what Royal Songwriters Homecoming, which will Roger Miller? you’ll do next. What can we expect on feature intimate acoustic performances by Chris Ronnie Dunn: Roger Miller is an American the next album? Stapleton, Scotty Emerick and Mac McAnally at classic. He was a genius. Sonny is a RD: I almost have my second solo record the Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum. down-in-the-trenches, all-pro, Tin finished. I like to push boundaries at Sunday, a live Hall of Fame awards show will Pan Alley craftsman. He’s covered all times. If you don’t, you’re not doing take place at ACL Live at the Moody Theater, genres and played with and written for your job as an artist. Regardless, I featuring Toby Keith, Austin natives Jack Ingram countless artists. I don’t think I could always try to keep one boot in Texas. I and Larry Gatlin, as well as this year’s honorees. Limited seating will be available for Saturday’s do it like he did. I don’t have the day-in, may rock a little hard on one or two, but event, and tickets are on sale now for Sunday’s day-out discipline that it takes to treat I always circle back to the ranch house. event. Ticket prices range from $39 to $79. To songwriting like a job. I admire him I just wrote a new song titled They purchase tickets, visit acl-live.com. For more tremendously. Still Play Country Music in Texas. It’s a information, visit texasheritagesongwriters.com I think I feel the power of scrutiny tongue-in-cheek poke at the perpetual or call 512.329.2631. -Jean Yoo from Texans more than any other Nashville, big-business trend machine.
36 ATX MAN spring 2013
ATX MAN Sponsored Events Giving on the Green Golfers put their best foot ‘fore’ward in local tournament for charity. By Amory Casto Set along the banks of the beautiful Colorado River, tucked just outside the bustle of Austin, the Hyatt Lost Pines Resort and Spa is the perfect location for the Meals on Wheels and More Golf Classic. You feel secluded enough to concentrate on your swing while happily competing to win fantastic tournament prizes. “April is perfect for being outdoors in the lovely setting, and you’re playing golf with the added bonus that you’re doing something that helps the community,” says Nicole Sarkar, director of development for the charity. Sans lectures or formal presentations, the tournament is not your ordinary charity event. Prompted by the sound of a shotgun, teams proceed through the expansive course and compete for titles like Lowest Gross Score. What the golfers really love about this tournament is the mission. All of the funds raised go toward supporting Meals on Wheels, whose mission is to nourish and enrich the lives of those in need through programs that promote dignity and independent living. According to Sakar, that’s what makes the tournament special to the players. “They enjoy it so much that they keep coming back each year,” she says. At the end of the day, when the sun begins to make its descent behind the hills, players can enjoy the crooning of jazz musician Slim Richey performing at the closing reception. Participants will also get to throw
Photo by Jim Arndt.
Harden Healthcare LLC Presents back scrumptious food and drinks provided by the Hyatt, and enter raffles for luxury prizes, including gift cards to some of Austin’s most fabulous restaurants. This year is turning out to be the biggest year for the tournament. With interest in attendance growing daily, the event is sure to sell out. Golf, fun and gorgeous surroundings—what’s not to love? Fore! April 22, 10 a.m. For more information, visit golf4meals.org or call 512.628.8193.
Mack, Jack & McConaughey April 11 – 12, various locations MJ&M is a big effort, with big-name celebrities and big fun events, all with the mission to give back in a BIG way. By uniting forces, Sally and Mack Brown, Amy and Jack Ingram, and Camila and Matthew McConaughey will maximize their impact in supporting programs dedicated to empowering children throughout the nation. The two-day event will include a gala dinner, concerts, a fashion show and a golf tournament.
Petcasso: Painting Cats and Dogs April 14, 6 p.m., AT&T Education and Conference Center Petcasso is a festive evening of unleashed animal artistry benefiting the programs and services of Animal Trustees of Austin. The event will include a lavish buffet dinner, both a silent and a live auction featuring paintings created by animal artists and their owners. This is Animal Trustees’ biggest fundraiser and helps support the organization’s two veterinary clinics providing affordable and quality health care for Austin’s neediest animals. For more information, visit animaltrustees. org/sites/petcasso or call 512.298.3129.
Caritas Speaker Series May 1, 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m., Hilton Austin The Words of Hope Speaker Series is an annual luncheon featuring an author whose story reflects the Caritas mission of providing those experiencing poverty a safety net, linking them to resources to achieve self-sufficiency. This year’s speaker will be Luma Mufleh from the national bestseller Outcasts United, the story of her coaching soccer to a group of refugee boys, and how through fiery hope and determination, it changes an entire community for the better. For more information, visit caritasofaustin.org or call Amy Jackson at 512.646.1262.
Meals on Wheels and More
NFL Alumni Golf Tournament: One, Two, Three, Putt! May 10 – 11, The Hills of Lakeway Signature Course Always wanted to meet your favorite football star? Come to this year’s NFL Alumni Golf Tournament and watch four-person teams, captained by a former NFL player, compete in a scramble format with adjusted handicapping. The top four teams will advance to a playoff to win an all-expenses-paid trip to the 2013 NFL Super Bowl of Golf. Proceeds will benefit the Center for Child Protection. For more information, visit nflaaustin.org/events.php.
Rise School’s 10th-Annual Golf Shoot Out May 13, 1:30 p.m., Barton Creek Country Club Kicking off this year’s tournament is a live auction and cocktail party at an exclusive Austin venue. The next day, golfers will compete on the green for fantastic prizes. Awards will be handed out at a post-round reception, and all funds benefit future programs of the Rise School of Austin. For more information, visit riseschool.org/austin.
Austin Classical Guitar Spring Event: Body and Soul May 16, 8 p.m., The Long Center for the Performing Arts Enjoy a journey to Spain and back in one dynamic, colorful evening of flamenco dance, music and song. Guitarist Carlos Pinana and his fivemember ensemble, including two guitarists, two dancers and his worldrenowned brother, Curro Pinana, put on a wonderfully romantic show that combines ultimate authenticity with contemporary flavor for the Body and Soul project. For more information, visit austinclassicalguitar.org.
Hyatt Lost Pines Resort and Spa April 22, 2013
Go to www.golf4meals.org for more information or to register online.
Play golf for a great cause! Proceeds from the event support the Meals on Wheels and More program, who provides hot, nutritious meals to over 5,000 elderly and disabled individuals and low-income children.
Ben - Willie - Dar r ell 4th & goal gal a Honoring the Coach, the Man, the Legend
7pm m arch 27th at acl liv e â€œThe real make of a man is how he treats people who can do nothing for him.â€? - Darrell K Royal
w w w.dk r fund.org
IN session The Legislature comes to town.
By Steve Uhler Photos by Cody Hamilton
Texas politics may be a lot of things, but it’s never boring. As the law-making locomotive powering the long train called Texas, the Texas State Legislature pulls a lot of weight and carries no small amount of excess baggage. Whether debating such volatile issues as gun control or expanding Medicaid, or considering the merits of medical marijuana or invoking the threat of secession (been there, done that, 1861), the Texas Lege lays the grid for the next generation of Texans and beyond. It is the first and last voice of the populace, the most vital link between the people and their government. The last session of the Texas Legislature wheezed to the finish line in 2011, burdened with an unprecedented $27 billion shortfall for the 2012-2013 biennium, resulting in a veritable tsunami of cuts to public-school funding, health and education services. On a gray morning in January, with the recent shootings at Sandy Hook and the national debt ceiling hanging in the atmosphere like the rain-swelled clouds looming over the Capitol dome, the 83rd session of the Texas State Legislature convened with its usual pageant of pomp and across-party-line bonhomie. But, to paraphrase Bette Davis in All About Eve, fasten your seatbelts, Austin, it’s going to be a bumpy ride. ATX Man spotlights the 83rd Texas Legislature, the players who make it happen and the issues that matter. You’ll find profiles on Austin’s “Key Three” men: Senator Kirk Watson and State Representatives Mark Strama and Elliott Naishtat, and discover the unlikely journeys that brought them to the Capitol. What they accomplish during this current session is likely to directly affect you.
We also check in with some of the Lege’s most influential power brokers, getting their perspectives, as well as an insightful sit-down with Texas Tribune Executive Editor Ross Ramsey. We’ve got a packed agenda. So grab a tall, cool beverage and settle in. This issue of ATX Man is now in session.
First things first The first Texas Legislature convened in 1846, comprised of 66 representatives and 20 senators. Ministers, priests and “people who engaged in duels” were forbidden from holding office. U.S. citizenship was not a requirement, but being white was. Salary was $3 per day. Today, elected officials make a base salary of $7,200 annually.
Texas Lege 101: A Crash Course in Texas Politics
For most of its existence, the Texas Legislature has been ruled by Democrats. The 20th Legislature (1870-1871) was the first in which Republicans held a majority of seats. It was also the first in which AfricanAmericans were elected to office.
40 ATX MAN spring 2013
In July 1917, James “Pa” Ferguson became the first—and so far only—Texas Governor to be impeached by the Texas Senate. But, with typical Texas moxie, he entered his wife in the 1924 Democratic gubernatorial primary. Miriam “Ma” Ferguson went on to serve two nonconsecutive twoyear terms as governor.
The Texas Legislature was exclusively a boys’ club until 1922, when Edith E. Wilmans of Dallas broke through the glass ceiling, becoming the first woman elected to the House. She left after a single term. Apparently she didn’t like Housework.
Within a span of 21 years—1930 to 1959—only one Republican was elected to the Texas Lege, and he only served a single term.
In 1957, Henry B. Gonzalez from San Antonio became the first Mexican-American elected to the Texas Senate. The Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center in San Antonio is named after him.
In 1966, Barbara Jordan became the first African-American woman elected to the Texas Senate. As president pro tem of the Senate, she also served one day—June 10, 1972— as acting governor of Texas.
Kirk Watson: Austin’s most formidable advocate. It’s hard to find anybody who doesn’t like Kirk Watson. With his Huck Finn grin and genial honeydipped demeanor, the Texas Senator possesses that rare alchemy: a politician who is genuinely popular. He’s also a compulsive achiever, a blur of perpetual motion, seemingly able to occupy two or more places at the same time. Watson sightings are as frequent as pollen counts in springtime: There he is on TV discussing water resources in Bastrop. There he is in D.C. for the inauguration. And wasn’t that him jogging on the hike-and-bike trail in Zilker Park? Even his most vociferous political opponents confess a susceptibility to his stamina and affability. “The first thing that comes to mind is his limitless energy,” marvels Watson’s old political adversary State Attorney General Greg Abbott. “Let me tell you, that energetic and amiable personality, combined with his sharp intellect and quick wit, make Kirk a very formidable opponent.” And he’s only getting more formidable. With the latest restructuring of his district, the ubiquitous Watson has even more hands to shake, people to meet, dragons to slay. “My district is 74 percent of Travis County, and now, after redistricting, 100 percent of Bastrop County,” he says during a rare break between meetings. “I have a whole new constituency. Tomorrow, I’ll spend the afternoon in
Elgin and the evening in Bastrop. It’s a brand-new set of people I’ve never gotten to work with before.” He seems genuinely pumped. Nothing stimulates Watson’s senses more than the opportunity to connect with people, and few do it with more panache. He’s a serial schmoozer, possessing some secret inner battery that puts lithium Duracells to shame. The question arises: What makes Kirk Watson run?
As a boy growing up in the tiny burg of Saginaw, TX, Watson was instilled with an early and enduring allegiance to public service. “My dad worked his entire career as a public servant, as a federal employee,” Watson relates. “My mother was a nurse. So on the one hand, my old man was a career public servant and placed great value on that. On the other hand, you had my mother, who was all about helping people when they were most vulnerable. It was a house of service.” The young 12-year-old legislator-to-be got his first taste of politics when he was elected president of the student council in the 8th grade; it was a harbinger of things to come. It was also around that time he first met schoolmate
and future high-school Committees Served On: sweetheart, Liz McSenate Committees of Daniel. The two would Business and Commerce, marry in 1979. Economic Development, A star student, Watson Nominations and Transportawas intuitively drawn to tion. Watson currently serves the practice of law. as vice chair of the Commit“The way I saw lawtee on Higher Education. yers then was that they Looking To Sway His represented people; they Vote? helped people. It was Watson admits to a love for an extension of public red velvet cupcakes with service, and that’s how I cream-cheese frosting. always saw the practice “And Julio’s chicken taco of law,” he says. plate, with extra taco, cut the Graduating first in his tomatoes and avocado.” class from Baylor Law something you want School in 1981, Watson to say? landed a clerkship in firstname.lastname@example.org Austin working for Fifth Circuit Federal Judge Sam D. Johnson. Following his clerkship, Watson joined a prestigious local law firm, also serving on the State Bar of the Texas Executive Committee and as president of the board for the Texas Young Lawyers Association. With his increasingly high public profile, the rising young attorney
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was tapped by Governor Ann Richards to be chair of the lar incumbent was re-elected with a landslide 84 perTexas Air Control Board, the predecessor agency to what cent of the vote, the highest percentage of votes ever is now the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. recorded for the office. But midway in to his second “She gave me my first big opportunity in public serterm, Watson stunned voters by stepping down in a vice,” Watson relates. “She was larger than life. Even in failed bid to run for state attorney general against Reintense, rough times, there wasn’t at least one moment publican Greg Abbott. Eleven years later, when asked when we didn’t laugh real hard.” why he walked away, Watson is momentarily stymied. Having married his high-school sweetheart, fa“I don’t know,” he reflects. “Go back to what I thered two sons and settled in to a comfortable home told you about the opportunity to run for mayor. in Austin, Watson’s future appeared limitless. But I’m somebody that is generally pretty careful about during a seemingly routine medical scan, Watson was evaluating opportunities. Because I’m supposed to be diagnosed with testicular cancer in 1991. He spent the dead a couple of times already, if after I evaluate an next two years enduring a grueling battery of surgeropportunity I think is something I ought to pursue, ies, treatments and energy-sapping chemotherapy. I’m not fearful of seizing that opportunity. I knew it Rather than ease off his workload, Watson typically was an uphill climb to win statewide, but it was a heck immersed himself even more intensely in his work. of an opportunity to be the lawyer for all the people. I Finally declared cancer-free in 1995, a rejuvenated couldn’t pass it up.” Watson began re-appraising his priorities. Following his defeat, Watson was “disappointed, “I was looking to do something different in life. for about a month” then, typically, got busy, servAfter the cancer, I truly lived my life in increments of ing as chair of the Chamber of Commerce, as well time,” he says. “People started talking to me, saying, as continuing his law practice. He also chaired the ‘You love politics, you enjoy service. Why don’t you 2004 campaign to build the first commuter rail line in run for mayor?’ At that point in time, I decided why Central Texas. When the opportunity arose to run for not? It was a three-year term. I figured, if I hate it, so Texas Senator in 2006, he didn’t hesitate. The outwhat? In three years, I’d be done. It couldn’t be as bad come was more a political fate accompli than a race. as the chemo.” During his first term, Watson consolidated all his Watson partially attributes his willingness to run skills and previous life experience, rapidly establishwith his life-threatening illness. ing himself as a canny and persuasive advocate for “One of the great gifts of cancer—and cancer has a lot higher education, accessible health coverage and imof gifts—is it creates a lot of freedom if you listen to your- provements in transportation. self,” Watson says. “It allowed me to say I’m going to do “There’s a learning curve under the dome,” notes some things I’ve never done, like run for a public office.” Austin Chronicle writer Richard Whittaker, “and a lot Once he made the deciof senators come in blinking sion to run, Watson focused like newborns and making Kirk Watson’s Top Three on the divisiveness that the veterans roll their eyes. Legislative Priorities: permeated the local politiThat’s pretty much the opcal atmosphere in Austin at posite of Watson. He became 1. Budget Honesty and Transparency the time. a minor Senate institution “For years, Texas has relied on debt, diversions “When I ran for mayor, I in short measure by learnand deception to balance its budget. It’s time to ran pointing out what I called ing the ropes rather than reform state government with honest accountthe de facto two-party system shouting from the rooftop. If ing and greater transparency. This will clarify in this city,” he says. “It wasn’t fellow Democrats have one the opportunities and challenges Texas faces Republicans versus Democriticism, it’s that he can be and allow the Legislature to address them in an crats; it was environmentala little bit too diplomatic. open, accountable way that Texans can trust.” ists versus developers, ChamBut when he does come out 2. Fund Our Schools ber of Commerce versus SOS, swinging, like when he op“We’ve got to find a permanent solution that Sierra Club versus the Real posed the nomination of antifairly funds our schools and prepares our kids— Estate Council. I said we’re evolutionist Don McLeroy to our future workers and employers—for the going to put an end to that, chair the State Board of Educhallenges and opportunities they’ll face in the and I think we did.” cation, it’s memorable.” 21st century. We should start by taking basic steps like fixing the Margins Tax and assuring As mayor, Watson became One of Watson’s signature that businesses and special interests pay their Austin’s golden boy. He was accomplishments during his fair share for the state’s schools.” in the right place at the right first two terms was speartime, overseeing a heady era heading the effort to build 3. Opportunity for the Middle Class “Our children are in danger of becoming the of growth and prosperity, a new University of Texasfirst generation of Texans in a very long time new business development Austin Medical School, that doesn’t inherit the economic infrastructure and transportation improveapproved last November by it needs to grow families and businesses. I’m ments, as well as dealing voters with Proposition 1. encouraged to hear talk of investment in things with the inevitable growing “In terms of politics, it’s like transportation and water. But we also pains of a semi-rural city one of those things that need to focus on women’s health care, early rapidly expanding in to a makes your name,” observes childhood education, affordable college tuition, metropolis. Texas Tribune Executive clean energy and other necessities that will help In 2000, the wildly popuEditor Ross Ramsey. “Not ensure our state’s continued prosperity.”
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that he really needs to make a name in the town where he’s been mayor.” In the wake of last session’s devastating budgetary cuts, Watson’s priorities for this legislative round focus on reinstating lost resources. “We need to restore the cuts we made in some very basic necessities,” he says. “We need to do right by public education and women’s health, including being in a situation where we need to address Planned Parenthood appropriately. Both of those issues are priorities of mine.” Another frontline issue is fiscal responsibility within the government. “People ought to be able to track their tax dollars and know precisely how they’re spent. We need to stop the diversions of taxing people for a specific purpose and then budget riders using them for something else. I think we’ll have real progress on that this session.” As a longtime advocate for sufficient water supply, improved transportation and public transit, Watson has concerns about sustaining the state’s resources. “We are not investing in the infrastructure in the way that we ought to,” he says. “I worry that in this building, we’re creating the first generation of Texans that won’t inherit capacity in infrastructure because we’re not willing to make the appropriate investments.” Watson’s efforts to lay the roadwork for Texas’ economic future are not without their inevitable potholes. The senator is not oblivious to the backlash of some public sentiment against last year’s launch of Formula One, a controversial venture that Watson championed in a high-profile public campaign. He staunchly defends the project. “I don’t refer to it as F1. I refer to it as Circuit of the Americas. F1 is just one weekend,” he says. “You’re going to see a whole lot of musical opportunities and other events that happen out there to create job opportunities for people in Eastern Travis County. If you see what the original plans were, like I did, what I saw was perhaps the largest economic-development opportunity east of I-35. I think it’s proving to be that.” After all these years in office, Watson has seen both sides of the public-service coin. “The thing I enjoy most is it gives me an opportunity to be out there with the people,” he says. “The most frustrating aspect of being in the Legislature is that I really think that those in control of this building work very hard to avoid addressing the issues that will make a difference in people’s lives on a day-to-day basis.” Watson is in more motion than usual these days. He and his family have recently moved to a smaller home in Central Austin (his boys are college-age now) and he’s also relocated his office to more spacious digs in the underground Capitol building extension. So what makes Kirk Watson run? In the end, there’s no revelatory rosebud epiphany, no Oprah ah-ha moment. From student council president to Texas senator, Watson’s life has been an ongoing marathon, and at 55, he shows no signs of breaking his stride anytime soon. To run is to live. And Kirk Watson was born to run.
A Q&A with Texas Tribune’s Ross Ramsey As Executive Editor of The Texas Tribune, Ross Ramsey is a longtime veteran of the Texas political scene. He sat down with ATX Man to discuss some of the ins and outs of the Texas Legislature, and what to expect—or not expect—from the current session. ATX Man: What do you see as this Legislature’s top priorities for the current session? Ross Ramsey: The main thing that the three leaders—Perry, Dewhurst and Straus—have been emphasizing is infrastructure: water and transportation. The next set of issues that comes up is always the budget. The budget this time is a little bit less compressed than it’s been in the last two years. The state’s recovering; its revenues were higher than the Legislature expected, so there’s less pressure to cut. Now the pressure is to reinstate some of the things they cut when times were tough. There’s also a lawsuit going on in the Travis County Courthouse over school finance. The question is when will the appeals for that be over, and when will that come back to the Legislature in terms of budget? So there’s sentiment in the Legislature to hold off on the big-budget items until they know what the school finance situation looks like. That may be after the session; they may need to call a special session. And there are things that popped up during the electoral season. There’s a lot of sentiment out there to change or get rid of standardized testing in public schools. There’s still pressure in the Republican party for school-choice vouchers for scholarship programs that would allow public money to go to private schools. There’s a fair number of members who would like to reinstate some of the $5.4 billion in education cuts that were made two years ago.
The Texas Tribune
AM: Could you give us an overview of the Legislature’s time frame? RR: The architecture of a session is such that the first 60 days, they don’t do much except file things and organize themselves, and then they’ll have some committee meetings. They won’t actually consider bills until mid-March. Then they start this process where the budget’s really hot and heavy and they’re hearing all the major bills we’ll be talking about sometime in April or May. Issues like guns and the governor’s call for a ban on abortion after 20 weeks will probably come up within that time frame. AM: What about the battle over implementation of the Affordable Health Care Act? RR: I think that will be a primary battleground for people who want to assert states' rights or talk about Texas versus the federal government. I expect that the debate over whether and how we implement what’s known to some as Obama Care is going to eat up a lot of time. The state would like to have a waiver where the federal government would send all its Medicaid money to Texas and we would implement our own program according to how we want to do it. The governor said in his State of the State address right at the beginning of the session that we’re not going to expand our Medicaid Program under the Affordable Care Act, and we’re not going to open medical exchanges for insurance. The feds would rather have the state go along with the Affordable Care Act comma by comma by semicolon. They’re saying that if you’ll do this, we’ll more than match every dollar you put in. It’s quite an attractive match; there’s a lot of money on the table. On the state’s side, it’s like, well, all of that is great but it comes with too many strings. I think both sides want to find something that works, which is always encouraging. AM: A few random subjects: medical marijuana? RR: We did some polling on this. We asked, “Would you object to medical marijuana? Would you object to small amounts of possession?” And Texans were surprisingly liberal about what they would allow. We asked another question, “If the state legalized marijuana and taxed it, what would you think about that?” And the word “taxed” turned out to be more negative in the polling than the word “marijuana.” My sense is that the public is more open to it than some of their representatives are. AM: Arming Texas schoolteachers with guns? RR: Almost everything that’s been proposed at the state level—and this could be superseded by the federal government—is a local option. So they may say a school district may arm faculty members who’ve been trained, or they may do this or they may do that. But it’s all permissive. So you would have a choice based on what your own school district thought, whether it was rural or urban or based on your local circumstance. AM: Equal rights for domestic partners? RR: This Legislature seems pretty strongly in favor of traditional marriage, a man and a woman. They’ve been unwilling up to this point to extend payroll benefits and other legal benefits to same-sex partners. It’s still a very conservative Legislature.
Mixing elements of old-school reporting, new journalism, deep database libraries and social media, The Texas Tribune is the digital go-to news and information source for all things political in the Lone Star State. The Texas Tribune embraces its new-media mission by providing citizens access to the tools they need to participate in the Texas democratic process. Want to find out the largest contributors to a candidate’s campaign? The history of a proposed bill? It’s all here. The idea for The Texas Tribune was conceived in 2009 by Austin venture capitalist John Thornton and longtime journalists Evan Smith (former editor of Texas Monthly) and Ross Ramsey (longtime owner and editor of Texas Weekly.) Launched in November 2009 as a nonprofit, nonpartisan media organization, The Texas Tribune emerged as a unique hybrid of online digital newspaper and virtual toolbox. It immediately made a cultural imprint, winning two Edward R. Murrow awards in the course of its first year. By 2011, the site had logged nearly 10 million total hits and more than 40 million page views. With its easy access to extensive data bases on candidates, bills, issues and campaign contributors, The Texas Tribune helps level the political playing field. “There’s always been a difference in the information that someone inside the system and outside the system has,” Ramsey notes. “A lot of the advantage inside of government was just knowing something first. Those things have narrowed incredibly in the last 20 years because everyone’s walking around with a computer in their pocket that also happens to be a telephone. Things that lobbyists and legislators used to know 48 hours before the rest of us, now they’re lucky if it’s 48 minutes.” Visit texastribune.org.
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Power Players of the 83rd Texas Legislature
Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives Joe Straus (R) Speaker Joe Straus is no stranger to politics, having served in both the Reagan and Bush administrations. Since his election in 2005, Straus has applied conservative fiscal policies to the state budget, helping the House cut more than $14 billion in spending. In his opening-day speech, the speaker laid out the main concerns of the 83rd Legislative session, which runs until May. “Our rapid growth requires a steadfast commitment to the core responsibilities of government, such as a quality education, a reliable water supply, a healthy transportation system and an honest state budget,” Straus said. Budget transparency is one of Straus’ main priorities. He noted in his speech that nearly $5 million collected through fees and surcharges is not being used for its intended purposes, calling for each fee to only be used for their purposes or not be collected at all. “We may disagree at times about the size of government and the need for spending, but I think we can all agree that our budget should be honest and straightforward with taxpayers,” Straus said. Along with education, transportation and the economy, the speaker directly addressed the drought. “The cost of this drought has been estimated at almost $8 billion in losses to agriculture alone, with untold economic and environmental costs elsewhere,” Straus remarked. For news and more information, visit joestraus.org.
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Representative Jim Pitts (R) Rep. Jim Pitts has practiced law in Waxahachie, TX, for more than 20 years, and previously served as president of the Waxahachie Independent School District and the Waxahachie Chamber of Commerce. Elected to office in 1992, Pitts has since been named one of the best legislators by Texas Monthly twice, once in 2005 and again in 2009. Currently serving as chairman of the Appropriations Committee, Pitts is responsible for keeping the state budget balanced. Pitts is widely credited for his instrumental role in passing the largest tax cuts in Texas history. “My No. 1 role is to ensure that we pass a budget that addresses the state’s needs, provides needed government services and adheres to the conservative fiscal principles that have made Texas a destination for millions of people seeking opportunity and prosperity over the past couple of decades,” Pitts says. As in the past, water conservation and plans for increasing Texas’ water supply both remain central issues for the 83rd Legislative session. Pitts echoed Governor Perry’s State of the State remarks on the infrastructure’s effects on the Texas economy. “As our cities continue to grow,” he said, “their water usage does as well, and it will be important for members representing different areas of the state to work together to ensure that all Texans have a safe, reliable and affordable water supply going forward.” For more information, visit jimpitts.net.
Senator Leticia Van de Putte (D) Sen. Leticia Van de Putte has represented District 26, which stretches across San Antonio and Bexar County, since 1999. In addition to serving as the chair of the Texas Senate Democratic Caucus for eight years, she was elected as president pro tempore of the Legislature on Jan. 8. A longtime advocate of veterans’ rights, Van de Putte currently serves as chair of the Veterans Affairs and Military Installations Committee. “We’re going to be focused on several things, mainly jobs for our veterans, and employment of our military spouses,” Van de Putte says of her goals for the session. “That means we’ll take a good hard look internally at the State of Texas agencies, and making sure that every veteran who wants a job and meets the qualifications can get hired.” Van de Putte is also an advocate for children, particularly those who have been victimized and forced in to labor or prostitution. Van de Putte introduced SB 93, which would continue the efforts of the Human Trafficking Prevention Task Force. Established in 2009, the group has helped increase awareness of the humantrafficking industry and spearheaded prevention efforts. “Now that we’ve given the prosecutors the tools they need, my colleagues and I will really look at the survivors’ side: the victims, especially domestic sex-trafficking victims,” Van de Putte says. “We’ll do the measures we can to get them the services they need, and treat them not like criminals, but like the victims they truly are.” For more information, visit leticiavandeputte.com.
State Representative Dawnna Dukes (D) A graduate of Texas A&M University and the owner of consulting firm DM Dukes and Associates, Rep. Dawnna Dukes has represented District 46 since 1995. In 2003, Dukes worked to develop the budget for the Department of Human Services, keeping the healthcare needs of the elderly and individuals with disabilities a priority. In 2007, she helped pass HB 109, which secured $82 million in funding for Children’s Medicaid programs, or CHIP. “As a member of the Appropriations Committee, I will continue working to adequately fund programs that are designed to assist our most vulnerable citizens. For example, Texas seniors and Texans with disabilities rely on nursing-care facilities and home health care for daily living. I will work to ensure that those services continue to be available,” Dukes says. “I will continue to fight to ensure Texans have access to quality, preventative health care, including support of the expansion of Medicaid through the Affordable Care Act. I will also strive to strengthen programs that protect and improve the lives of children.” Dukes introduced HB 707, which proposes an amendment to the state’s education code that would implement policies to guard against dating violence in middle and high schools. Another notable bill, HB 451, would protect job seekers by preventing employers and colleges from asking for personal information in order to gain access to social-networking profiles and email accounts. For more information, visit dawnnadukes.com.
By Rachel Merriman
State Representative Donna Howard (D) Elected in 2006, Rep. Donna Howard has served on the House Higher Education, House Administration, Technology and Culture, Recreation and Tourism committees. Her work serving on the Eanes ISD school board from 1996 to 1999 has contributed to her knowledge of public education and her focus on improving Texas schools and universities. Howard holds a master’s degree in health education from the University of Texas, and has served as president of the Texas Nurses’ Association. During the 2011 Legislative session, Howard introduced legislation that increased the fine that the state can charge for illegal retaliation against nurses. She also filed and successfully passed an amendment to the Texans for Patients’ and Physicians’ Rights bill, which protects the identities of nurses who report physicians for practicing below standards of patient care. “We know where we need to be headed: toward an educated and healthy citizenry, a skilled workforce, a flexible economy, an efficient transportation infrastructure and a sustainable supply of our natural resources,” Howard wrote in a January op-ed in the Austin-American Statesman. “This requires not just a single tank of gas, but a serious and responsible commitment of the fuel needed to drive our economy forward. I believe we have the resources for the journey, and I am eager to work with my colleagues in the coming months to ensure we arrive at our destination.” For more information, visit votedonna.com.
In 1990, Mark Strama was doing what a lot of recent college grads were doing: hanging out on Sixth Street. But in contrast to the local goths and slackers populating the scene, Strama had an actual agenda in mind, albeit a hazy one: He wanted to break in to the music business. “I was very into the Austin scene,” Strama recalls. “I wanted to develop a career in the music industry. But I had no idea in what capacity. I was working nights in clubs on Sixth Street looking to discover some great up-and-coming band. I didn’t have anything to do during the day, so I volunteered for Ann Richards’ gubernatorial campaign.” Two years prior, as a student at Brown University, Strama had been impressed with Richards’ “Poor George” speech at the 1988 Democratic Convention. But faced with meeting the legendary firebrand in person, Strama did what countless others did before him: He wilted. “I was terrified of Ann,” he admits. “I was 22. She was very intimidating. I was scared to death of her.” Working for Richards, Strama soon became acclimated to the currents and eddies of political life, going on to become chief of staff for Houston Senator Rodney Ellis. In 1995, Strama got a call from a friend in LA telling him the Rock the Vote program was looking for somebody with a solid political resume who looked like a grunge rocker. It seemed the ideal entry to the music-industry job Strama had long coveted. “I got the job, and went out to LA,” he says. “I discovered I wanted no part of the music business. But it was a really cool job. I got to travel all over the country and be a part of every major political event of 1996.” While with Rock the Vote, Strama created a website where people could register to vote online. The project drew 40,000 new voters, a modest but encouraging success. Returning to Austin, Strama launched newvoter. com, an application that other websites could use to register their visitors to vote. The venture took off, and Strama spent the next four years taking a crash course on business and riding the Internet roller coaster. By 2004, the rising entrepreneur had acquired a wellrounded reputation for successes and skills in the public sector, technology and business development. But Strama missed the challenges and pace of political life. The next logical step was running Mark Strama’s Top Three for public ofLegislative Priorities: fice. “When I decided to run, 1. Improve Public Education “The key ingredients are starting early; everybody leveraging technology; providing a husaid, ‘You’ve mane, caring environment for kids and got to call Ann extending learning time for at-risk kids.” Richards. Ask 2. Renewable Energy Technology for her sup“Texas has profited enormously from its port.’ I found leadership in the fossil-fuel industry. To that at the age preserve that prosperity, we need to be a of 37, I was as leader in renewable energy for the next scared of Ann hundred years.” Richards as I’d 3. Reform the Political System been at 22. But “We have to do something about the I called her influence of money and gerrymanderand asked if ing that cause Americans to feel so she’d support disconnected from the politicians that me. She was they elected.”
Mark Strama: From MTV to the Legislature, he keeps rocking the vote.
elected: 2004, District 50 Committees Served On:
House Committee on Public Education, House Committee on Energy Resources, Ways & Means, International Trade & Intergovernmental Affairs Looking To Sway His Vote?
Due to dietary restrictions (Strama eats no grains, starches, sugar or dairy), currying his favor with flavor is out. “It’s awfully hard to influence me through my stomach because I’m not allowed to eat any of the foods I’d be influenced by.” something you want to say?
very stern on the other end of the phone. She said, ‘Mark, why are you doing this?’ I launched in to my entire stump speech. I started telling her everything I believe in and all of the issues that I care about and all the ways I could make a difference. I poured all my passion and idealism in to this way-too-lengthy soliloquy, and when I finally ran out of breath, there was five seconds of silence. Then, for the first time in all the time I’d known her, Ann Richards softened up toward me and said, ‘Aw, sweetie, that’s the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard in my whole life.’ ” She went on to give him some pragmatic advice. Strama won, squeaking past his opponent by a mere 569 votes. Now in his fifth term, Strama devotes much of his energy to battling the often-odious practices of redistricting, gerrymandering and what he perceives as the dispropor-
tionate and corruptive influence of money in the system. “It’s ridiculous,” he says. “Voters are frustrated with politics at every level. Money may be more out of control here than it is at the national level. We have no limits on political contributions. We’ll never get where we need to get on education and energy and health care until we fix the systemic problems with the way democracy works.” Visitors to Strama’s Capitol building office occasionally note that, in the right light, the representative from District 50 bears an uncanny physical resemblance to a young Rick Perry. It’s a comparison of which he’s keenly aware. “The first time I ever met him, I said, ‘You know, Governor, some Democrats don’t trust me because they think I look too much like you.’ Without blinking an eye, he said, ‘Well, you are a good-looking man.’ ”
"This will be my last session as a member of the Texas House." What’s Next For Representative Strama? On Feb. 20, Strama’s blog post announcing that after serving 10 years in the Texas House, this session would be his last rocked the media and politicos alike. After acknowledging the honor of serving his constituents, Strama cited his frustration with the “lopsided balance of power” in the Texas Legislature as a factor in his decision. The announcement is certain to fuel speculation about a possible run for mayor. According to Strama, he remains undecided. “I know you’re all assuming this means I’m running for mayor of Austin. It doesn’t. I still haven’t decided, and don’t intend to decide until after session is over. I’m very focused on getting the most out of my remaining time as a member of the House,” he says. “I am thinking about running for mayor, but I’m also thinking about a lot of cool things I could do in the private sector once I’m freed up full time again. I’ve done a lot of work on renewable energy and on education technology, and both are areas where I believe I might have a greater impact through private entrepreneurship than I’m able to have in government.” What’s next for Rep. Strama remains to be seen. ATX Man will keep you posted. For the entire blog post, go to atxman.com.
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Governor Rick Perry (R) Fifth-generation Texan Rick Perry has held the governorship since 2000, for a record 12 years, and is the first Texas governor elected to three four-year terms. He served as agricultural commissioner, then briefly as lieutenant governor before assuming the governorship after newly elected president George W. Bush took office. In his seventh State of the State address, Perry called Texas “the nation’s prime destination for employers and job-seekers alike,” citing the creation of more than half a million private-sector jobs added in the last two years. Perry also proposed to use $3.7 billion from the rainy-day fund to address statewide water and transportation issues, pointing out that solving these issues is critical to Texas’ continued economic growth. Improving education was another priority in Perry’s speech. He highlighted the need for more public charter schools and more affordable higher education. In his previous State of the State address, Perry called for colleges to develop a $10,000 fouryear degree, which 13 Texas universities have released plans for so far. There’s no official word on whether Perry will run for the governorship in 2014, but something tells us the seasoned politician isn’t ready to slow down just yet. For more information, visit governor.state.tx.us.
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By Rachel Merriman
Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst (R) Lieutenant. Governor David Dewhurst has served as the lieutenant governor of Texas for nine years and previously served in the U.S. Air Force and as chairman of the governor’s Task Force Committee on Homeland Security. Dewhurst was elected as the Texas Land Commissioner in 1998, becoming the first Republican to hold the position in more than a century. He identifies as a fiscal conservative. “This session, we will again balance our budget without raising taxes on Texas families and businesses, while keeping spending as low as possible,” Dewhurst said at a Jan. 14 press conference. “Year after year, we’ve made state government live within its means while adequately funding our priorities.” In the wake of the Newtown, CT, shootings, Dewhurst called for statefunded firearms training for schoolteachers. “As lieutenant governor, I will continue to preserve our Second Amendment rights and defend our state from further attacks by Washington. Here in Texas, we believe that government exists to empower people, not rule over them,” Dewhurst said in a Jan. 16 statement in response to President Obama’s gun proposals. For more information, visit daviddewhurst.com.
Elliott Naishtat Austin’s longest serving state representative doesn’t tilt at windmills. He gets the job done. Elliott Naishtat didn’t set out to end up in Texas. He wanted to go to San Francisco. But fate—and the Texas Legislature—intervened. As a 20-year-old student at Queens College New York in 1965, Naishtat was fired up by Lyndon B.
Johnson’s eloquent exhortations to join the war on poverty. Enlisting as a VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) volunteer shortly after graduating, the former political-science major was eagerly anticipating an assignment on the West Coast. But
Politics, Texas-Style: The Pundits Weigh In “Texas is where the modern conservative theory of budgeting—the belief that you should never raise taxes under any circumstances, that you can always balance the budget by cutting wasteful spending—has been implemented most completely. If the theory can’t make it there, it can’t make it anywhere.” Paul Krugman
“As they say around the Texas Legislature, if you can’t drink their whiskey, screw their women, take their money and vote against ’em anyway, you don’t belong in office.” Molly Ivins
Illustrations by Sarah Quatrano.
The View from the Top
after five weeks of training as a community organizer One night in 1990 at Scholtz Beer Garden, colin San Antonio, a bemused Naishtat found himself leagues began urging the now-seasoned politico unceremoniously placed on a Trailways bus, staring to make a run for state representative. At first, Naout at endless miles of arid South Texas desert, scrub ishtat demurred. brush and armadillo road-kill. “I thought I’d lose. First of all, I’m from New York. “It just went on and on. And on,” he remembers. Second, I’m Jewish. Third, I’m an ex-VISTA volun“Washington promised me an assignment in San teer—the next worst thing to being a Communist,” Francisco. But, you know the government. They sent he says. me to Eagle Pass, Texas.” Finally persuaded, Naishtat found himself runSo Elliott Naishtat grew where he was planted, ning against a three-term incumbent Republican initiating a Head Start program with local kids. with deep pockets and a disconcerting habit of “One day, this Hispanic man with a coat and tie mimicking a lynching whenever he saw his adverin the middle of summer appeared and walked up to sary approaching. me,” Naishtat recalls. “I was working outside, wear“He was kidding,” Naishtat recalls. “I think.” ing cut-offs, a T-shirt and sandals. My The campaign ads of hair was long. I was sweating. It was his opponent—replete Elliott Naishtat’s Top Three hot. And he just started laughing out with snarky referloud in my face. I said, ‘Sir, is there a ences to Naishtat’s East Legislative Priorities: problem?’ He caught his breath and Coast, liberal Jewish said, ‘There’s no problem. I just had to background—became 1. Increased Funding for Health come down here so I could meet the the stuff of local legend. & Human Services Programs guy from New York who thought he But to just about every“The Department of Family Protective Services made hurtful cuts in the arenas was going to San Francisco. I’m the one’s surprise, Naishtat of child-protective services, healthnew program officer for all the VISTA won. He’s been reprotective services. I would like to see projects in South Texas.’ He put out elected 11 times. those cuts reinstated and more money his hand and said, ‘My name is GonNow serving his 23rd put in to that.” zalo Barrientos.’ ” year in the Legislature, 2. Improved Senior Care It was the beginning of a fortuitous Naishtat still champions “We need to put more resources and friendship. After a year in Eagle Pass, the same issues and state money in to programs that affect Naishtat came to Austin to enroll at causes that drew him to seniors, so that more people can stay the University of Texas School of community service so in the communities as they age. If we Social Work, eventually serving an long ago. A passionate care about the fate of elderly people internship at the Capitol. As a particiadvocate for the disadand people with disabilities, we have to pant privy to the inner workings of vantaged and underadequately fund these programs.” the Legislature, Naishtat began to see served, he’s served on 3. Funding Education how the machinations of procedural both the Public Health “I think you’d hear this from any politics affected the more under-repCommittee and Human member of the delegation. We need resented segments of the population, Services Committee, to do everything we can to restore the and vice-versa. In 1985, his former and is particularly vocuts to public education. The district I boss Barrientos became a state senacal about the Medicaid represent includes UT campus. We need to adequately fund public education and tor and promptly appointed Naishtat expansion proposal so higher education. as staff counsel. vehemently opposed by
“Texas is neither Southern nor Western. Texas is Texas.” Senator William Blakley
“Govern wisely, and as little as possible.” Sam Houston
“Above all, Texas is a nation in every sense of the word.” Mark Twain
Governor Rick Perry. elected: 1990, District 49 “We have the highest rate of uninsured Committees Served On: people in the nation,” Public Health Committee, Naishtat says. “If we Human Services Committee, Joint Legislative Committee participate in the on Aging Medicaid expansion, it would cover 1.5 Looking To Sway His Vote? million uninsured, Elliott Naishtat is fond of both low-income Texans baby carrots and oranges. On the sartorial front, he only wears over the next decade. ties from Save the Children Governor Perry’s pocharity organization, so don’t sition is shortsighted. even think Hermes. It’s a really harsh, something you want to punitive, Draconian say? position because if email@example.com he cared about the plight of low-income people who are uninsured, this is the perfect opportunity to address those health-related means. So we’re going to have some really interesting discussions and debates over whether or not the Legislature should direct the state through Health and Human Services to participate.” Naishtat is proud of his progressive legacy among his constituency. “Everyone knows that Austin is the liberal oasis of Texas, and I think District 49 is the most liberal district in Austin,” he says. He’s also gained both support and notoriety for some of his more provocative proposals and bills: advocating medical marijuana, equal rights for samesex domestic partners and a moratorium on the death penalty—not exactly your standard Lone Star State high-priority legislative agendas. Disparaged by some critics as being too idealistic, too liberal, too unrealistic, Naishtat takes the barbs with gracious equanimity, all part of the job. But the deceptively soft-spoken legislator bristles at being described as Quixotic. “I don’t tilt at windmills,” he says with nuanced defiance. “I pass bills.” ◆
“I’ve always said that in politics, your enemies can’t hurt you, but your friends can kill you.” Ann Richards
“How can you look at the Texas Legislature and still believe in intelligent design?” Kinky Friedman
atxman.com 4 7
WHAT A WONDER
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6th Annual Speaker Series Featured Speaker
Inspiration for The National Bestseller
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May 1, 2013 11:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m.
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Outcasts United is the real-life story of a group of refugees and a woman who, with tough love and determination, changes an entire commmunity for the better. The 6th Annual Words of Hope Speaker Series benefits Caritas of Austin, a nonprofit that serves 20,000 homeless, working poor and refugees.
Eat, drink Legislate and
After hours with the 83rd Texas Legislature. By Matt McGinnis
49 atxman.com 4 9
Austin becomes the temporary home to almost 200 hard-charging politicians and thousands of lobbyists and legislative staffers eager to do the business of the state. These men and women work long hours in the Capitol building trying to get as much done as possible in the 140-day session. When voting is done on the legislative floor and the lights go out in the offices, a mighty hunger and thirst draw the legislators and cohorts in to the restaurants and bars throughout town. Where do the part-time resident politicians go for a bite to eat and something to drink? Austin has its share of tried-andtrue haunts that legislators have flocked to year after year, like Cisco’s for breakfast, the Austin Club for lunch and after-hours drinks at Austin Land and Cattle for a hefty steak. While veteran politicians may stick to the traditional favorites that are an easy walk from the Capitol, other members of the 83rd Legislature are venturing to hot spots on West Sixth Street and the Eastside. “The landscape has changed a lot in the last four years with a lot of new places opening near the Capitol. For a long time, the Texas Chili Parlor and Capitol cafeteria were the only lunch choices, and you can’t eat at the Chili Parlor four days a week. Also, in the last four years, about 60 percent of the people in the Legislature are new. There are a lot of guys who aren’t ingrained in old habits and have heard about Austin as a culinary mecca, so they are eager to try new places,” says Mike Lavigne, a legislative consultant. “Don’t worry. The Cloak Room will never go away. It’s an institution.” It seems the tone is changing too. Healthy eating has replaced the neverending buffet of barbeque as legislators try to get through session without gaining weight. They are cutting down on booze too. In the past, many legislators treated session like an extended Spring Break, taking full advantage of the freedom of being away from home for a few months. The late-night party scene of past decades is giving way to a more businesslike attitude. You will still find senators and representatives in bars throughout Austin, but with fewer wearing their ties around their heads.
50 ATX MAN spring 2013
Captain's Room at III Forks.
Steakhouses Reign Supreme While there is a trend toward healthier eating, steakhouses are still the first choice among the Capitol crowd. “The most popular places for legislators to eat are steakhouses. They are the go-to spots for staff members and lobbyists,” says Isaac Albarado, with the office of Representative Harvey Hilderbran. A visit to any of Austin’s beef sanctuaries will reveal this truth with dozens of blue-blazer and lapel-pin clad policy warriors eagerly meeting over meat. Several of the established steakhouses like Flemings, III Forks, Ruth’s Chris and Sullivan’s remain mainstays, F av o r i t e and Bob’s Steak & Chop House, which opened last summer, has quickly become S t e a k h o u ses part of the regular circuit. “Members of the 83rd Legislature are in here every night,” says Nick Uhlman, a Austin Land and Cattle server and apprentice sommelier at Bob’s Steak & Chop House. “They sit at tables Company, 1205 N. Laof four but move around between each other’s tables discussing bills and business. mar Blvd. Typically, they are very, very frugal and order basic filets and baked potatoes. Bob’s Steak & Chop Legislators are not boutique wine drinkers. They like to share bottles of Jordan House, 301 Lavaca St. cabernet sauvignon and Rombauer chardonnay.” It’s not just the legislators; the governor also comes in. Fleming’s Prime “Rick Perry is very respectful to the servers and calls them by their names. He Steakhouse & Wine Bar, even insists on de-crumbing his own table, saying, ‘I made the mess. I can clean it 320 E. Second St. up.’ He brings in his own Bordeaux from home to enjoy with his 12-ounce ribeye,” III Forks Steakhouse, 111 Uhlman says. Lavaca St. Perry’s Steakhouse & Grille, a short walk from the Capitol, has a regular parade of politicians. Perry’s Steakhouse & They flock to Perry’s Grille, 114 W. Seventh St. Filet from Austin Land and Cattle Company in small groups and Ruth’s Chris Steak in pre-arranged House, 107 W. Sixth St. large parties with Sullivan’s Steakhouse, set menus. The most 300 Colorado St. demanded items are the pecan-encrusted snapper, the eightounce filet mignon and the peppercorn New York Strip. But the standout dish is the signature 32-ounce pork chop, which is carved tableside.
III Forks photo courtesy of III Forks; Austin Land and Cattle photo by Annie Ray; Uchi photo by Mark Jorgenson.
Every odd-numbered year,
Man Can’t Live on
Dining and Drinks
W. 24th St.
1. ALC STEAKS 1205 N. Lamar Blvd.
6. RUTH’S CHRIS STEAKHOUSE 107 W. Sixth St.
2. BOB’S STEAK & CHOP HOUSE 301 Lavaca St.
7. SULLIVAN’S STEAKHOUSE 300 Colorado St.
3. FLEMING’S PRIME STEAKHOUSE 320 E. Second St.
8. BUENOS AIRES CAFE 1201 E. Sixth St.
4. III FORKS 111 Lavaca St. 5. PERRY’S STEAKHOUSE &
9. CHERRY STREET 1612 Lavaca St. 10. EDDIE V’S PRIME
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SEAFOOD Between the take-out TexGRILLE 301 E. Fifth St. 114 W. Seventh St. Mex, barbeque and steak, E. M artin 11. TEXAS CHILI PARLOR Luth legislators have a fantastic 1409 Lavaca St. er K ing Jr. B selection of restaurants 12. UCHI lvd. 801 S. Lamar Blvd. to choose from in Austin’s burgeoning gastronomic 13. UCHIKO W. 15th 4200 N. Lamar Blvd. 9 St. scene. In general, res14. W AUSTIN taurant decisions are not 11 1 200 Lavaca St. voted along party lines. E. 15 th S t. 15. STAR BAR However, the Roaring W. 600 W. Sixth St. 12th 16 Fork on Congress Avenue St. 16. CLOAK ROOM is a Republican gathering CAPITOL 1300 Colorado St. GROUNDS place, while the Buenos 17. LUSTRE PEARL Aires Café on East Sixth 97 Rainey St. Street is a Democratic 18. CLIVE BAR hangout. The rest of the 609 Davis St. top spots for politicos are W. 19. BAR 96 6th St. a mix of time-honored 96 Rainey St. 5 15 W. 5th establishments like Ed20. EAST SIDE SHOWROOM St. 1100 E. Sixth St. die V’s and Uchi, along 6 21. SHANGRI-LA with newer restaurants 1016 E. Sixth St. W. downtown. Cea sar 2 10 22. YELLOWJACKET Cha Trace in the W Austin 7 vez SOCIAL CLUB St. 14 is a favorite for lunch E. 6 1704 E. Fifth St. th S t. 21 20 because of its proximity E. 5 4 th S to the Capitol and the E. 1s t. 3 t St . incentives set up just for legislators. 22 Bar 8 E. C “Trace’s Lunch on the ton eas 19 17 Spr ar Fly is by far the most ing Ch sR a vez d St. popular menu item with 18 legislators, and it’s truly n a great deal. Having the 12 option of being served in s multiple courses gives them an opportunity to conduct business over the meal. During the current to the members of the 83rd Legislature, the W quickly became a favorite lunch destination for legislative session, we are seeing a lot more botAustin introduced a Session Insider Card this year politicians. The wood-fired Neapolitan Pizza with tles of cabernet sauvignon being ordered at lunch as with free valet parking anytime and special rates house-made mozzarella and a thin, crispy crust is well,” says Sean Bradshaw, director of beverage and for rooms and events. the most-ordered selection on the menu. Pasta and food for W Austin. Chef Jason Dodge, part owner of Péché, opened pizza make up the core of the menu, but the kitchWarm doughnuts to go are also a big hit. To cater the Italian eatery Cherry Street last fall, and it en is flexible with requests. The manager shared a story about a legislator who regularly comes in to sip on a F av o r i t e Res t a u r a n t s Roaring Fork, 701 Congress Ave. Manhattan while reading over Buenos Aires Café, 1201 E. Sixth St. big stacks of cases and bills. Texas Chili Parlor, 1409 Lavaca St. He requested low-carb options Cherry Street, 1612 Lavaca St. Uchi, 801 S. Lamar Blvd. and Cherry Street obliged by Eddie V’s Prime Seafood, 301 E. Fifth St. Uchiko, 4200 N. Lamar Blvd. adding fish, muscles and steak Uchiviche from Uchi to the menu.
atxman.com 5 1
and No Play
Makes Jack a Dull Boy
52 ATX MAN spring 2013
Living Room Bar at W Austin
The Eastside is also a destination for craft cocktails. “Last session, I went to the East Side Show Room with lots of legislators, including both rural Republicans and urban Democrats,” Lavigne says. “That was a trip for many of them who were looking for a Miller Lite or a Crown and Coke and experienced seriously talented mixoligists behind the bar making great craft cocktails. They really liked it.” Despite the craft-cocktail and craft-beer trend that has swept through Austin in the past few years, legislators tend to go with old standbys like Bud Light and basic cocktails mixed with whiskey or vodka. “Legislators are not necessarily connoisseurs, but drink what is available. You won’t see a 67-year-old senator waiting in line for a tiki drink. State representatives come from all over the state and typically from suburban or rural areas, and they are not as familiar with the craft-cocktail scene. They’re just not comfortable ordering a Blood and Sand. Instead, they appreciate a nice scotch or bourbon,” Lavigne says.
Drink Like a Senator The Living Room in the W Austin offers several classic and creative cocktails. A favorite of legislators is the Final Say.
Cherry Street sports a full list of pre-Prohibition cocktails like the Sazerac.
Final Say ½ ounce Bulliet Rye ½ ounce green chartreuse ½ ounce Luxardo maraschino liquor ½ ounce lime juice Shake and pour into martini glass
Cherry Street Sazerac Rinse with Kubler absinthe 2 ounces Overholt rye whiskey ½ ounce of simple syrup Peychauds bitters
Living Room photo courtesy W Austin; Cherry Street Sazerac photo by Steve Anderson.
Alcohol is the great equalizer. Unlike in Washington, D.C., party lines dissolve over a drink as both Republicans and Democrats mingle at the plentiful bars throughout Austin. This session, the go-to neighborhoods are downtown, West Sixth Street, Rainey Street and the Eastside. In Central Austin, sophisticated senators relax with creative cocktails at the swank Bar Congress while their more down-to-earth House counterparts kick back in a more unassuming setting. The Cloak Room is still top of the list for its proximity, clubiness and insider cred. During a recent visit, the bar was packed with men in suits discussing various bills. When asked where politicians go to blow off steam during session, the bartender gave a wry smile and replied, “Not here, for sure.” Albarado says people are branching out beyond downtown. “The W Hotel is a place that people go quite a bit,” Albarado says. “It’s a good cenF av o r i t e B a r s tral location, but people are moving out of just the central area and going to West Sixth Bar 96, 96 Rainey St. to hang out at J Blacks and the Ranch. Star Bar Congress, 200 ConBar has become wildly popular more now gress Ave. than last session.” Clive Bar, 609 Davis St. The über hot Rainey Street District is also a prime destination. The Cloak Room, 1300 “After working for 14 to 15 hours inside Colorado St. the building, people want to go have a drink East Side Show Room, outside. There are several bars on Rainey 1100 E. Sixth St. Street with outside seating. No place on Rainey is untouched by legislators, staffers Living Room at the W and lobbyists. We go to Lustre Pearl, Bar 96 Austin, 200 Lavaca St. and Clive Bar,” Albarado says. Lustre Pearl, 97 Rainey St. Eastside bars like Shangri La and the Yellow Jacket Social Club filled with hipsters Shangri La, 1016 E. Sixth St. seem like unlikely places for politicians with Star Bar, 600 W. Sixth St. anchorman hair and pinstriped suits, but they have become a great place to go unwind Yellow Jacket Social Club, incognito. 1704 E. Fifth St. The speakeasy-like anonymity seems to be working. When asked whether politicians frequent the Yellow Jacket Social Club, the bartender replied, “Yeah, I mean, two cats came in today that looked like legislators. You know, expensive Mercedes and big suits and stuff. They were cool folks. They tipped well.” When asked what they ordered, he offered a worn stereotype. “Well, when you’re a legislator, you have three martinis at lunch. Isn’t that the norm?” After a pause he conceded he was making it up, “Yeah. I don’t know, man. I don’t know what those people look like.”
Bar 96 on Rainey Street
Texas Whiskey Whiskey is one of the drinks of choice for many Texas legislators. Fortunately, it is possible for them to enjoy their favorite libation while also supporting their Texas constituency by buying Texas-made whiskey.
Balcones Distillery, based in Waco, was the first Texas-made whiskey on the market in 2009. “We make an original-style Texas whiskey made with Hopi blue corn,” says Chip Tate, owner and head distiller. “We are distinctly different from bourbon. Our whiskies have a lot of similarities to Scottish malt, but a taste all their own. I like to think of it like barbeque versus steak. One isn’t better than the other; they are just different.” Balcones makes about 6,000 cases a year of seven styles of whiskey, and is working furiously to keep up with demand. It is sold in 20 states, the U.K., Australia, Sweden, Norway and Japan. Balcones whiskies are available in Austin at liquor stores and bars like TenOak, the Tigress and Fino.
Garrison Brothers Distillery
Dan Garrison started his whiskey distillery in Hye, TX, in 2006, and his first batch in 2008 was bottled in 2010. Garrison Brothers made 2,222 barrels in 2012, which will go on sale in 150,000 bottles in 2015, sold exclusively in Texas. Garrison has seen bottles of his whiskey on the desks of several Texas legislators and counts the governor as a fan. “Governor Perry has visited Garrison Brothers twice. The first time he came in a limo accompanied by Texas Rangers, and the second time he came with a buddy unannounced on Harleys. We have pictures of him and staff with the stills,” Garrison says. Garrison Brothers makes the first vintage-dated bourbon ever produced. The fall 2011, spring 2012 and fall 2012 vintages are all available in Austin liquor stores in limited supply. The bourbon is also available at major steakhouses and TenOak, and the W Austin sells it by the bottle.
Ranger Creek Brewing & Distilling
Ranger Creek makes smallbatch bourbon in its combination brewery and distillery in San Antonio, and released its first whiskey in 2012. Ranger Creek makes Texas straight bourbon whiskey aged in large barrels for a minimum of two years, and Ranger Creek .36, a small-barrel version that is named for the Colt .36 pistol carried by the Texas Rangers. Head distiller Mark McDavid and co-founder TJ Miller experimented with the different woods and aging times to develop the smooth, caramel yet spicy f lavor they desired in their bourbons. Ranger Creek is available at select bars, restaurants and liquor stores throughout Austin.
atxman.com 5 3
Three top destinations for a spring getaway and the goods you’ll want to bring along.
The Elevation Hotel and Spa Crested Butte, CO
Blue Bay Grand Esmeralda Playa Del Carmen, Mexico
The Scene: Family- and pet-friendly. Amazing views, professional and friendly staff, best bang for the buck, indoor pool and hot tub, helpful concierge, complimentary shuttle to town, ski to the front door.
The Scene: Go green as you are immersed in a tropical rainforest surrounded by mangroves, palms, exotic plants and animals. All-inclusive, quiet, white beaches, turquoise water, sailing, snorkeling, huge pool, friendly staff and great bartenders. Check in and never leave, or explore in Playa Del Carmen and the Yucatan.
What are you waiting for? skicb.com/cbmr/elevation-hotel-and-spa.aspx
keeping warm For Staying Connected: The North Face E-Tip Gloves, $45, available at Nordstrom, 2901 S. Capital of Texas Hwy., 512.691.3500.
The Scene: Duck into the ivy-covered oasis on South Congress during the madness that is South By Southwest to see why this is a go-to accommodation for in-the-know techies, hip filmmakers and stars, and up-and-coming musicians. Enjoy the tranquil garden bar or walk to the Continental Club, Guero’s and Jo’s. Reclaimed, retro, minimal, hip and laidback. A hotel with a soul, much like Austin itself.
What are you waiting for? bluebayresorts.com/en/hotel-bluebay-grandesmeralda.html
What are you waiting for? 1316 S. Congress Ave., sanjosehotel.com
plan for fun
style meets comfort
For an Imprompto Beach Fiesta: Jawbone Bluetooth speaker, $180, available at Best Buy, 1201 Barbara Jordan Blvd., 512.322.2047.
For Waterproof Memories: Fuji Film Finepix XP170 compact digital camera, $280, available at Precision Camera, 2438 W. Anderson Lane, 512.467.7676. Trover is a free app for travel enthusiasts. Trover's rich archives feature thousands of eye-popping, geo-tagged images from more than 200 countries to provide travelers the opportunity to find hidden gems (food, activities, local sights). Available in the iTunes store or Android marketplace. For more information visit trover.com.
54 ATX MAN spring 2013
Hotel San Jose, Austin, TX
For Pocket-Sized Style: Ray Ban folding sunglasses, $150, available at Nordstrom, 2901 S. Capital of Texas Hwy., 512.691.3500.
For Insulation from the Elements: Bear Creek hat, $48, available at Goorin Bros., 1323 S. Congress Ave., 512.326.4287.
To Make a Splash: Pineapple Upside Down shorts, $58, available at Tommy Bahama, The Domain, 11506 Century Oaks Terrace suite 112, 512.852.5001.
For Keeping it all Together: BillyKirk Padded Zipper Briefcase, $360, available at Bow+Arrow, 215 S. Lamar Blvd. suite C, 512.579.0301. For a Stroll Down SoCo: ALDO Adric sneaker, $70, available at Nordstrom, 2901 South Capital of Texas Hwy., 512.691.3500.
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Spring Switch-Up Five great cuts and styles for the season. By Ted Sabol-Williams, Photos by Rudy Arocha
❱❱ With spring upon us, it’s the perfect opportunity to try a new cut or style and freshen things up. Even subtle changes, as simple as parting your hair differently or adding a little product, can completely change your look. Inspired by the season, Austin locals model the following modern men’s cuts, complementary of any Austin age, profession or scene. Ted Sabol-Williams is a cutting specialist at Jackson Ruiz Salon, located at 500 N. Lamar Blvd. For more information, visit jacksonruiz. com or call 512.478.7744.
Keep it under control
accentuate the curls
Eric Flores: Eric likes to keep his extremely curly hair maintained. To keep this type of hair texture more manageable without having to shave it off, I gave him a short crop. It’s styled sleek in this look with Aveda Men’s Firm Hold Gel (gel), but can be roughed up from dinner to dancing for a more casual look.
Josh Villarreal: Josh has great hair texture that should be highlighted. If you have a curl or wave you want to enhance, work Aveda Men Pure-Formance Grooming Cream (lotion plus gel) through your hair, letting it set without touching your hair until it’s completely dry, either with a diffuser or by air drying. Once dry, work your hands through your hair to break up the style for an effortless look. Dress up or dress down for any occasion.
play the part
show off your features
Zach Heine: Zach, working with photography and film and being the creative type, was open to a more unique look. With this in mind, I also wanted to create a style that drew attention to his eyes. The longer side falls mid-face so in movement and conversation, this cut brings focus to his eyes. I used Aveda Men’s Liquid Pomade (light pomade) for a more malleable, shiny look.
Charles McGehee: Charles has great prominent features and I wanted to open up his face in order to highlight them. I left some length on top to help give a balanced appearance and took the sides in tight. Aveda Men’s Pomade (thick pomade) gave me this suave, controlled and versatile look.
Ryan Murphy: An avid bicyclist, Ryan often sports a wind-blown look that I took inspiration from. After also hearing he was a musician, I wanted him to have a hassle-free, natural style. This look is casual in a T-shirt or classy with a suit and tie, but a little more Aveda Men’s Grooming Clay (paste) makes for a more messy texture.
56 ATX MAN spring 2013
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CUT & STYLE
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In the Know
Combatting Male Pattern Baldness Keep the hair you have, restore the hair you’ve lost. By Jill Case
❱❱ If you are starting to lose your hair, or if you are worried about losing it in the future, you are not alone. It’s a common concern, with good reason, for almost all men. According to the American Association for Hair Loss, “common male pattern baldness (MPB) accounts for more than 95 percent of hair loss in men. By the age of 35, two-thirds of American men will experience some degree of appreciable hair loss, and by the age of 50, approximately 85 percent of men have significantly thinning hair.” Before you become depressed, you need to know that there are many options available to help you retain the hair you still have and even restore the hair you have lost. Managing Hair Loss with Medicine When people think of medical treatment for baldness, they often think of Rogaine (Minoxidil), since it was
myths about hair loss Hair loss and male pattern baldness are determined by your mother’s side of the family. The genes that determine whether you will experience baldness can come from either side of your family tree, and the tendency may or may not skip a generation.
58 ATX MAN spring 2013
Wearing a hat, baseball cap or helmet causes hair loss. You can wear anything on your head all day long, and it will not damage your hair follicles or cause hair loss. It might cause split ends (and/or hat head!). Gels, hair sprays or blow-drying cause hair loss. Style away! Neither the heat from the dry-
the first drug approved by the FDA for treating baldness and has been around the longest. Now available as an over-the-counter topical treatment, Rogaine has been clinically proven to slow hair loss and regrow some hair. Propecia (Finasteride) is a prescription oral medication that works to slow hair loss (or even halt it) by lowering DHT (dihydrotestoterone) levels. DHT affects the hair follicle, shrinking it in size, which can lead to hair loss and baldness. Therefore, lowering the DHT level is all-important to the health of the follicles and in the prevention of hair loss.
er nor the ingredients in the styling products will harm hair follicles, which is the important factor in hair loss, not the strands of hair themselves. Getting more frequent cuts and trims will promote thicker hair or make it grow faster. Haircuts only affect the hair strands, not the all-important follicles. Frequent trims will make your hair look better because
it helps to get rid of broken and/or split ends, but it will not promote more hair growth or make your hair grow faster. Having a lot of sex (or not having sex often enough) will affect hair growth. Rest assured, no matter how your sex life is going (for better or worse), how often you have (or don’t have) sex will not affect your hair loss in any way!
Dr. Jeffrey Hall, a board-certified plastic surgeon at Hall Plastic Surgery & Rejuvenation Center in Austin, says these treatments are most appropriate for men who are just beginning to experience hair loss and who want to keep the hair they have now. If the hair loss is already substantial, however, these treatments will probably not be very effective on their own. These medicines are often used as a complement to other hair-loss treatments, such as laser treatments or hair transplants, to prevent further hair loss. Both Rogaine and Propecia are only effective when they are used continually. There are no carry-over effects with the medication in the long term.
Laser Hair Therapy If you are looking for a gentle, non-invasive way to stimulate hair growth and promote stronger, thicker hair, laser hair therapy might be right for you. Stateof-the-art technology (like the type used by Austin Hair Graft at Hall Plastic Surgery & Rejuvenation), laser treatment uses an open-hood design that gives 100 percent coverage of the treatment area, increasing the contact of the laser energy with the hair follicles, making it more effective than many hand-held lasers that are on the market. Laser therapy uses low-level lasers to stimulate the hair follicles, which results in hair regrowth and decreased hair loss, as well as stronger hair. It may also increase your ability to grow longer, thicker hair. Hall describes the benefits of thicker hair, noting that five hairs that are twice as thick can look like 10
Deirdre❦Rhoad, M.D. Board Certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery Member American Society of Plastic Surgeons thinner strands of hair, giving you the appearance of having more hair. According to Austin Hair Graft, “studies with the device have shown that the low-level laser produces an 85-percent success rate in halting the progression of hair loss.” They recommend twice-a-week treatments (each treatment lasts about 30 minutes) for anywhere from 12 weeks up to one year.
Hair Transplants Hair transplants have come a long way from the old plugs. “People all recognize the hair restoration that was done years ago when we used plugs, because people would get these cornrows that look odd, didn’t look natural,” Hall says. He notes that the treatment has evolved in to a procedure that is quicker and more efficient. The new method doesn’t leave scars, and the tiny openings that result from the procedure will heal in just three to five days. FUE (follicular unit extraction) is a minimally invasive, FDA-approved procedure that is done with an automated pneumatic pressurized system that harvests individual hair follicles from the scalp without a scalpel incision or stitches. The scalp is numbed with a local anesthetic, so there is little pain or discomfort for the patient. The pneumatic FUE procedure allows the physician to do more grafts in a shorter period of time, which is more convenient for the patient, as well as more cost-effective.
Seeking Help for Your Hair Loss Plastic surgeons and dermatologists are the doctors who generally treat patients with hair loss. If you are looking at hair transplants, look for a physician like Hall who has accreditation from the International Society of Hair Restoration Surgeons. “The main thing is not to be embarrassed about [hair loss]. Do something proactive,” Hall advises, adding that the sooner people seek treatment, the more treatment options are available to them. Most importantly, “there is something that can be done, and it’s not all the hair transplant itself. It’s a strategy in which we restore the hair that’s lost and then maintain the hair that you have.” Hall also points out there are options for every budget. For people who cannot work a hair transplant into their budget right now, he says, “There are other treatments like the laser treatments and the medications, which will help.” If you are uncomfortable about your hair loss, there are treatment options out there. For the best results, consult a doctor to develop a treatment plan instead of relying on unproven options that might disappoint you. Dr. Jeffrey Hall is a board-certified plastic surgeon and the co-owner of Hall Plastic Surgery & Rejuvenation Center.
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Rock Hard Abs
The iron flag. Not only is this a fast way to develop your abs, but it is also a test of your pure strength. Start by wrapping one hand at the bottom of a pole toward the ground, and wrap the other arm as far away from the bottom hand as possible. Keep the bottom arm locked and pull with the top. Once you have the forced combination, kick both feet in the air and hold your entire body erect in the air like a flag for a one-Mississippi count. Build up to three seconds each side and then build this in to rep counts.
How to get a summer six-pack. By Ryan Nail, Photo by Rudy Arocha
Trying to save money in a hard economy? Well, after doing these ab exercises, you will be able to cut back on your electric bill by washing your clothes on your washboard abs! It’s that time of year again, and if you want a six-pack for the summer, now is the time to start doing these specific ab exercises. The following exercises can be done pretty much anywhere, and these pieces of exercise equipment are often overlooked in a gym full of dumbbells and weight machines. Add a little diet to this bad-boy workout, and your abs will be the center of attention, just waiting to be touched. Remember: Hard work pays off!
RYAN NAIL is the owner of CoreFit Training. For more information, visit traincorefit.com
60 ATX MAN spring 2013
Leg lifts. Find a dip bar and hold yourself up and lift your legs up until they are aligned with your hips. Stay in control as you bring your legs down, and make sure you do not swing your body or let your feet be used as momentum for this exercise. This is a killer way to develop your lower abs.
Rocky plank. Yes, this comes straight out of the movie Rocky. Lie flat on a bench and grab the bench with your hands above your head. Pull with both hands and erect your body horizontally in the air and hold for a one-Mississippi count. Do as many as you can to the point of fatigue.
The VIPR. Depending on the weight of the VIPR, you can do anything from cardio to core work. Start in a plank with the opposite arm reaching underneath you, and grab the VIPR and drag it across the floor. Then sidewalk in the plank until you are back to your original position. Do this for 10 yards there and back three times.
The wheel of death. Attach this piece of equipment to your feet and start in a push-up position. Move into a pike using your abdominals. Once at the peak, walk back into a push-up position and reach one arm under and then do the same with the opposite arm while keeping balance. Do this exercise for 10 yards three times.
In the Know
Brian Jones' sports report
College Baseball Scoreboard
Coach Augie Garrido with team
The outlook for the UT Longhorns, teams and players to watch. By Dustin McCommas
2013 UT Longhorn Baseball Outlook
2. Utilizing the Speed Texas wanted to run last year; it just didn’t get on base enough to do it. This season, Texas fans should expect the Horns to run early and often with success. In fact, this might be the fastest team that Augie Garrido has ever had at Texas. Weston Hall, Madison Carter, Erich Weiss, Taylor Stell, Ben Johnson, Mark Payton and Matt
Teams to Watch: Five Favorites
1. North Carolina UNC’s rotation is made up of pitchers that posted a sub 2.00 ERA last season, and the offense is led by preseason All-American Colin Moran, one of the top third basemen in college baseball.
2. Vanderbilt Not only is Vanderbilt one of the most talented teams in the
62 ATX MAN spring 2013
Moynihan all have the ability to steal double-digit bases this season as regulars. Nicholson’s aggressive approach on offense should lead to lots of action on the bases. 3. Rounding Out the Rotation Under Skip Johnson, Texas is used to great starting pitching. However, like last year, there is some uncertainty surrounding where that pitching will come from as the days of Cole Green and Taylor Jungmann being mainstays in the rotation are over. We know sophomore Parker French is going to be the Friday starter, but the next two spots haven’t been decided. Junior Nathan Thornhill and sophomore Dillon Peters could have the inside track to those two spots. But keep an eye on junior Josh Urban, sophomore Cameron Cox and freshman Chad Hollingsworth.
country, but it returns a ton of production from last season.
3. Stanford Right-hander Mark Appel turned down millions as a first-round selection to return to Stanford, and the Cardinal might be the most talented team in the country, with an offense that should drive in a lot of runs on a consistent basis.
4. Arkansas The rotation is one of the best
in America, and is headlined by right-hander Ryne Stanek, who could be the top overall selection in the next Major League baseball draft.
5. LSU Outfielder Ralph Rhymes (.431/.489/.530) returns, along with a few other productive bats from last season, to lead the offense, and ace righty Aaron Nola leads a pitching staff that can dominate the opposition.
4. Left-Handed Relievers Anyone who’s watched Garrido manage a game knows the NCAA’s all-time wins leader loves to play the matchups. So, Texas’ head coach likes to have at least two lefties and two righties he can go to as setup guys in order to get to his closer, which is always one of the strongest parts of his team. Gone from last year’s team is veteran reliever Hoby Milner, and into the mix as a lefty is…to be determined. While the Horns have strong right-handed options they could slide in to that setup role, they don’t have any left-handed ones yet. If Peters doesn’t make the rotation, he’d certainly be in the mix, but the odds are with him being a starter. So, that means the left-handed setup men will probably be a combination of freshmen Travis Duke, Ty Culbreth and Toller Boardman. None of the three have strong stuff, but they have the ability to command, mix speeds and get outs, with Boardman being the player that’s shown that the most so far. 5. Leadership Above anything else, Garrido thinks great teams become great because of things like work ethic and teamwork. In order to get those things where they need to be, you need strong leadership. Texas didn’t have strong leadership last season, and when things went south, there was no one there to keep the ship from sinking. This season, the leadership should be improved with juniors Jacob Felts, Thornhill, Mark Payton and sophomore French leading the way. Garrido’s best teams have always had strong leaders, and in order for this season to be a success, this team will need those too.
Photo courtesy UT Athletics.
1. Will the Offense Improve? Last season, this same question was one the Longhorns had to answer. Despite making the College World Series in 2011, the Horns were a well-belowaverage club on offense. In 2012, things got worse as Texas hit .263/.350/.373 with just three regulars posting an on-base percentage above .350. So, the Longhorns parted ways with longtime assistant and hitting coach Tommy Harmon, brought in Tommy Nicholson, got C.J. Hinojosa on campus and upgraded the hitting talent with some junior college additions.
5 Teams To Keep An Eye On
5 Teams Under The Radar
Players To Watch
1. Florida The Gators lost a lot of talent from last year’s College World Series club, but they should be able to pitch very well to help carry an inexperienced but talented offensive lineup.
1. Florida State FSU’s pitching staff stopped being a weakness last season with the hire of pitching coach Mike Bell, and despite losing key offensive production, the Seminoles always find a way to hit under Mike Martin.
1. Sean Manaea, Indiana State After posting a 3.34 ERA in 104.0 innings last season with 115 strikeouts, Manaea, a left-hander, wowed every scout in attendance with his upper 90s fastball and outstanding slider while throwing in the Cape Cod League last summer. He’ll be in the conversation as the top overall pick in the 2013 MLB Draft.
2. UCLA A team that reached Omaha last season will again have one of the best pitching rotations in the nation, and if you can pitch at an elite level, you can win at an elite level. 3. Oregon State Just because the Beavers didn’t make a Super Regional last season doesn’t mean you should sleep on them, because if you do, you’re ignoring a talented team with no true weakness. 4. North Carolina State Ace left-hander Carlos Rodon is so good that he should carry the Wolfpack to the top of the ACC standings as they battle rival North Carolina for the top spot. 5. South Carolina South Carolina lost its head coach, along with a ton of production, but it’s tough to count out a team that was playing for a three-peat last season in the College World Series’ final series against Arizona.
2. Texas After a disastrous 2012 season that saw Texas miss out on the NCAA tournament, the Longhorns return their top two hitters, upgraded their talent level, hired hitting coach Tommy Nicholson, and under Skip Johnson, the team always pitches well. You won’t find the Horns in most preseason polls, but that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be there. 3. Arizona Last year’s National Champion enters the season underrated because it lost four hitters that hit more than .340. But a strong pitching staff is back, and Andy Lopez is good enough to find a way to get his team to hit with last season’s top hitter Johnny Field back on campus. 4. Missouri State Lately, we’ve seen nonBCS conference teams and non-traditional powers reach Omaha. Last year, it was Stony Brook and Kent State. This year, could it be a Missouri State team that returns its top hitter and made some noise in the Coral Gables Regional last season? 5. Cal State Fullerton The offense returns a lot of key pieces and while it’s ahead of the pitching staff right now, the staff doesn’t lack talent.
2. Colin Moran, North Carolina He’s one of the premier hitters in the country and is the leader of a consensus favorite to not only reach the College World Series, but to win it. 3. Ryne Stanek, Arkansas With a fastball that can touch 98 miles per hour and two other strong pitches, Stanek, who finished with a 2.84 ERA last season and .229 batting average against, is absolutely one of the best pitchers in the country. 4. Mark Appel, Stanford He made this list before last season, and the right-handed starting pitcher is back to lead Stanford again as a senior with great stuff on the mound. 5. Carlos Rodon, North Carolina State Rodon, a sophomore left-hander, lets his numbers do the talking: 1.57 ERA in 114.2 innings on the mound with 135 strikeouts, 41 walks and a .176 batting average against.
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In the Know
Dad 2.0 What I learned at the summit. By Clay Nichols
On the other end of the line, my 14-year-old son is patronizing me. “It’s OK, Dad. It’s really no big deal.” No big deal that the hotel that I’ve sent him off to, by himself, has no reservation under his name. Probably because I forgot to make one. He’s being brave, but I can tell he’s nervous, having already flown by himself for the first time today. Now this. A credit card and a phone call solve the immediate crisis, so I’m free to return to my conference. A parenting conference. A fatherhood conference where I’d been asked, as an expert myself, to conduct live interviews with leading authors, bloggers and researchers on the state of American dads. If irony were money, I’d be Boone Pickens. The Dad 2.0 Summit is an event that attracts writers, bloggers mostly, but also authors, videographers and social-media types—people that might generally fall under the category “content creators” or “thought leaders” in the area of fatherhood. The conference then brings them together with marketers and brand reps from a variety of industries. It’s a gathering that generates lots of conversation about gender roles, stereotypes and media depictions of stay-at-home dads. There are readings from featured bloggers that are moving and personal. Panelists discuss the importance of authenticity when writing about life crises. Earnest conversations happen, but there are no drum circles or sweat lodges at Dad 2.0. There is a cooking contest and a display of organic baby food, but also a whiskey tasting and free straight-razor shaves on offer. Overall, the event has a decidedly pragmatic and even entrepreneurial vibe. These are indeed “daddy bloggers,” but daddy bloggers that have an interest in “monetization,” turning their hobby of reviewing the latest baby monitors and strollers in to a sideline, or even a career. The most successful guys in attendance have amassed large audiences online and the brands in attendance are keen to recruit them. The companies want to sell things to people online, and the bloggers have people online to sell to. Market research indicates that dads are significantly more likely today than in the past to be part of household purchases. Hence, the motivation to sponsor a dad blog conference. But what do brands like Dove Men + Care, Honda, Sears
64 ATX MAN spring 2013
Automotive, ConAgra—all sponsors of the event—do to get a dad blogger to post something that might lead to a sale? And is it worth it? Finding an answer is harder than one might think, and at least in part, the reason for the conference. Past bloggeroutreach efforts have included sending out free samples for the writers to test and review, paying for articles that include (presumably favorable) mentions of the products, sponsoring bloggers to travel to brand events or conferences, and hiring bloggers as “brand ambassadors,” virtual pitch men undertaking a mix of all the above. For me, the dance between brands and dad bloggers, the whole event itself was satisfying and legitimizing. As a founder of DadLabs, I put up my first blog post in 2006, about the same time we posted our first video to this new site called YouTube. For years, we made the case that speaking to dads had an economic value because the role men play in the home was changing in a fundamental way. Eight years later, the Dad 2.0 Summit was proving out our assertions before our eyes. Even more enjoyable was the sense of collegiality— more like a college reunion—with the dads (and a few brave moms) that I’d met, read and admired online for so many years. There was Jason Avant and his band of compadres that produce the hilarious and irreverent group blog Dadcentric. There was conference co-founder and organizer Doug French, known for his wit and insight as Laid Off Dad hanging with the young turks; and Charlie and Andy of the brilliant site How To Be A Dad. Most dad blogs are born and are most vibrant in the early months and years when you feel like you may actually be inventing this whole dad thing, or at least re-inventing it. My kids are older now. Old enough to be playing in a soccer tournament in the same area (Hous-
ton) on the same weekend as the Dad 2.0 Summit. After scooping my kid up at Hobby, we’d had just a few minutes to nip in to the conference. Proud dad, I introduced my towering son to my friends. I felt a pang when he watched the barber chair and straightrazor booth and voiced regret about having shaved that morning. To me, his presence was the perfect way to insinuate, in a loving way, that I might be getting too old for this shit. We ducked out of the conference and traversed most of East Texas. I dropped him at a soccer field in Spring (calling this a Houston tournament is about as descriptive as calling it a Texas tournament), begged another parent to get him to the team hotel and slogged through construction-clotted IH-45 back to the conference hotel downtown. Then I got his call. No reservation, but really, Dad, it was no big deal. I walked back to the conference wondering if I would confess to my ironic ineptitude. I decided to take my lead from the attendees, whether they were talking about parenting or the business of blogging, to make an effort to be a little vulnerable, to share successes and screw-ups and to try to do better next time. Dad 2.0.
Clay Nichols is co-founder and chief creative officer at dadlabs.com, the web's leading resource for all things dad. He is also an author, playwright, former teacher, husband and father of three living in Austin.
In the Know
Savvy Planning Should you pay off your mortgage or invest? By James W. Hamilton, III
❱❱ Owning a home outright is a dream that many Americans share. Having a mortgage can be a huge burden, and paying it off may be the first item on your financial to-do list. But competing with the desire to own your home free and clear is your need to invest for retirement, your child’s college education or some other goal. Putting extra cash toward one of these goals may mean sacrificing another. So how do you choose? Evaluating the Opportunity Cost Deciding between prepaying your mortgage and investing your extra cash isn’t easy. But you can start by weighing what you’ll gain financially by choosing one option against what you’ll give up. In economic terms, this is known as evaluating the opportunity cost. Here’s an example: Let’s assume that you have a $300,000 balance and 20 years remaining on your 30-year mortgage, and you’re paying 6.25 percent interest. If you were to put an extra $400 toward your mortgage each month, you would save approximately $62,000 in interest, and pay off your loan almost six years early. By making extra payments and saving all of that interest, you’ll clearly be gaining a lot of financial ground. But before you opt to prepay your mortgage, you still have to consider what you might be giving up by doing so: the opportunity to potentially profit even more from investing. To determine if you would come out ahead if you invested your extra cash, start by looking at the after-tax rate of return you can expect from prepaying your mortgage. This is generally less than the interest rate you’re paying on your mortgage, once you take in to account any tax deduction you receive for mortgage interest. Once you’ve calculated that figure, compare it with the after-tax return you could receive by investing your extra cash. For example, the after-tax cost of a 6.25 percent mortgage would be approximately 4.5 percent if you were in the 28 percent tax bracket and were able to deduct mortgage interest on your federal income-tax return (the after-tax cost might be even lower if you were also able to deduct mortgage interest on your state income-tax return). Could you receive a higher after-tax rate of return if you invested your money instead of prepaying your mortgage?
66 ATX MAN spring 2013
Keep in mind that the rate of return you’ll receive is directly related to the investments you choose. Investments with the potential for higher returns may expose you to more risk, so take this in to account when making your decision.
Other Points to Consider While evaluating the opportunity cost is important, you’ll also need to weigh other factors. The following list of questions may help you decide which option is best for you. ➜ What’s your mortgage interest rate? The lower the rate, the greater the potential to receive a better return through investing. ➜ Does your mortgage have a prepayment penalty? Most mortgages don’t, but check before making extra payments. ➜ How long do you plan to stay in your home? The main benefit of prepaying your mortgage is the amount of interest you save in the long term. If you plan to move soon, there’s less value in putting more money toward your mortgage. ➜ Will you have the discipline to invest your extra cash rather than spend it? If not, you might be better off making extra mortgage payments. ➜ Do you have an emergency account to cover unexpected expenses? It doesn’t make sense to make extra mortgage payments now if you’ll be forced to borrow money at a higher interest rate later. And keep in mind that if your financial circumstances change (if you lose your job or suffer a disability), you may have more trouble borrowing against your home equity. ➜ How comfortable are you with debt? If you worry endlessly about it, give the emotional benefits of paying off your mortgage extra consideration. ➜ Are you saddled with high balances on credit cards or personal loans? If so, it’s often better to pay off those debts first. The interest rate on consumer debt isn’t tax-deductible and is often far higher than either your mortgage interest rate or the rate of return you’re likely to receive on your investments. ➜ Are you currently paying mortgage insurance? If so, putting extra toward your mortgage until you’ve gained at least 20 percent equity in your home may make sense. ➜ How will prepaying your mortgage affect your overall tax situation? For example, prepaying your mortgage (thus reducing your mortgage interest) could affect your ability to itemize deductions. This is especially true in the early years of your mortgage when you’re likely to be paying more in interest. ➜ Have you saved enough for retirement? If you haven’t, consider contributing the maximum allowable each year to tax-advantaged retirement accounts before prepaying your mortgage. This is especially important if you are receiving a generous employer match. For example,
if you save 6 percent of your income, an employer match of 50 percent of what you contribute (i.e., 3 percent of your income) could potentially add thousands of extra dollars to your retirement account each year. Prepaying your mortgage may not be the best financial move if it means forgoing that match or shortchanging your retirement fund. ➜ How much time do you have before you reach retirement or until your children go off to college? The longer your time frame, the more time you have to potentially grow your money by investing. Alternatively, if paying off your mortgage before reaching a financial goal will make you feel much more secure, factor that in to your decision.
The Middle Ground If you need to invest for an important goal but you also want the satisfaction of paying down your mortgage, there’s no reason you can’t do both. It’s as simple as allocating part of your available cash toward one goal and putting the rest toward the other. Even small adjustments can make a difference. For example, you could potentially shave years off your mortgage by consistently making biweekly instead of monthly mortgage payments, or by putting any year-end bonuses or tax refunds toward your mortgage principal. And remember, no matter what you decide now, you can always reprioritize your goals later to keep up with changes to your circumstances, market conditions and interest rates.
James W. Hamilton, III is a financial advisor in the private wealth-management division at Morgan Keegan. He oversees the diverse needs of a select group of clients in a highly personalized manner, including wealth management, retirement planning and succession strategies. He is a graduate of the University of Georgia with a degree in economics and organic agriculture. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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In the Know
pretty woman speaks her mind
Brandi Grissom Shining a light on Texas politics. By James Jeffrey, Photo by Rudy Arocha
Brandi Grissom got her journalism start in high school, writing for a daily newspaper in her hometown of Alliance, NE—population 10,000. Her audience has since grown, now that she’s a reporter and managing editor at The Texas Tribune covering Texas politics, and has her byline in the New York Times. “I love being in the field reporting and getting to know people,” Grissom says, eyes sparkling with conviction. “That’s the heart and soul of journalism and where stories come from. But I also love editing and being part of decision making in a creative space like The Tribune, where we tell stories in different ways and think outside the box about how to help readers have a better understanding of policy or politics behind those stories. It’s really exciting and fun. It’s also important.” Despite the rigors of keeping up with Texas politics and non-stop Internet-based journalism, Grissom still finds energy to pursue her passion for triathlon and marathon running. Recently, she clocked her best time of three hours, 38 minutes—“and 30 seconds,” she emphasises—qualifying for the Boston Marathon.
On What Matters This Legislative Session “Every session, the biggest issue is the budget, as that drives everything. What legislators decide to spend money on are what they decide are the priorities for Texas. So one of the biggest questions now that there is a budget surplus is what to do with it. Two years ago, they cut $5.4 billion from education, so do they try to replace those cuts? I’m also particularly interested in how the Legislature deals with issues of funding our prison systems; if we can keep people out of prison, it will cost us less money.”
On Talking Politics at Home “My husband and I talk about it and our relationship is made stronger because we can have different points of view while still looking at where the other is coming from—without ending up arguing and name-calling.” On the Inclusiveness of Texas Politics “It involves every single person who lives in the state of Texas. Decisions made under the Capitol’s dome affect everything from the education your children receive, to the sort of treatment your pets get at veterinarians, to the kinds of roads you drive on every day. The whole point at The Tribune is to allow people to have an inside view so they can judge for themselves whether or not there are the conflicts and corruption people worry about.” On Visiting the Capitol for the First Time “Wear comfortable shoes, expect to get lost and remember that where there’s an elevator, a restroom won’t be far away.”
68 ATX MAN spring 2013
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The Dangers of an Office Romance By Eric Leech
An office affair is not something the typical guy seeks out; it seeks him like a ravenous carnivore, hungry for the thrill of sneaking away from the apple tree to sample the sweet nectar of a ripe peach. The problem with divulging in this temptation is that it’s rarely worth the trip. In other words, the draw of an office romance almost never rewards, rather, it punishes with a demotion, divorce or loss of respect from
friends, co-workers and family. However, before we can discuss the level of danger, I should explain how a man finds himself in this situation in the first place. What’s the attraction?
Boss to Subordinate
It’s not just the role of a boss that creates the opportunity to seduce a subordinate. It is also the type of man who is attracted to these positions of power. These are the guys who are born risk takers. They’ve got where they are by riding the waves of raw instinct, and they conduct much of their personal life with the same enthusiasm and fervor. Boss types believe they are in the driver’s seat of their life and career, which means they also believe they are in control of not getting caught in an affair. Unfortunately, this is the illusion of power, as testosterone has a way of encouraging men to act foolishly.
Subordinate to Boss
Perhaps one of the greatest aphrodisiacs in any relationship is power. We look up to people in executive positions, often overlooking their undesirable characteristics (unattractive, overweight, moody, cheating, etc.). We are susceptible to their charm, just for the opportunity to bask in the limelight of their attention.
While the rest of the world may view the CEO of a clothing company as average, those within the company may see her as smart, fearless, poised, confident and sexually unattainable. A man may not always like his boss, but when she takes special interest in him, it will pique his curiosity.
Co-Worker to Co-Worker
Co-workers are attracted to each other because of the most fundamental rules of attraction. The first rule, proximity, states that we gain attraction to others based on our familiarity and proximity to them. If you spend eight hours a day with a co-worker, and three hours with your spouse, this can give an office mate the advantage. The second rule is commonality. We spend one-third of our lives at work, dealing with the same clients and problems as our co-workers. Having something in common, even if it is on an impersonal level, can create the illusion of a deeper bond. The third rule is deception. The average coworker comes to work well-groomed, nicely dressed and on their best behavior. Believe it or not, you are actually seeing the best of those you work with.
Where’s the Danger in a Little Fun? Women get swept up in the emotions of office affairs, making them the most susceptible to getting caught (and hurt). Women also have more to lose, according to some experts. There seems to be a double standard when it comes to office romances, and one only needs to look as far as the final term of President Bill Clinton to see how this can play out. Statistics suggest men are more likely to remarry after an affair, and may even go on to further their career with the same company. The same is not true for the woman involved. However, this is not an invitation to flirt with your co-workers, as repercussions have a way of coming around full circle. Even if you don’t get caught, your business relationship will forever change (and not for the better). My best advice: If you’re planning on romancing your boss or subordinate, find a different job. Occasionally, dating a co-worker may be worthwhile. However, this is assuming you are both unattached and willing to keep everything on the down low. According to one survey by Office Mate, the office can be a successful place to find your soul mate. In fact, the survey company claims one-third of office relationships end in marital bliss. (They fail to mention the other two-thirds probably end with your ear stapled to your lapel.) An office romance is a temptation most men have contemplated. However, so is pulling a hangnail from your pinky finger, and we all know what happens after that (yee-ouch!). The best way out of any gooey-sweet love triangle is to avoid stepping in to it in the first place.
70 ATX MAN spring 2013
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The Last Word
Living in the Live Music Capital of the World every little thing gonna be alL right. By Roy Spence
Hi, Austin men and women. Happy 2013! My hope is for all of you to enjoy a wonderful, special and grateful year in the Live Music Capital of the World. Speaking of which, I want to talk about music. One of my dear and loving friends is a person named Wally Williams. He and his business partner, Danny Levin, founded and built Tequila Mockingbird, a world-class music studio right here in Austin. Wally is one of the most outrageous and gifted creative people on the planet. His words and lyrics are read and heard throughout the country. Yes, he is a product of College Station and Texas A&M. Get over it. This column is a tribute to Wally and his precious wife and lifelong partner, Judy Williams. It is also a tribute to the power of music to transform emotions and find ways to connect to the human spirit, heal hurts, build bridges and lift us all up. Sadly, last month, Wally’s best friend in the world and soul mate for 39 years, mother of their three children and grandmother to six, finally said goodbye after a mighty and inspired duel with cancer. Cancer had its day. But Judy claimed eternity. The memorial service was at the blessed Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center. The place was overflowing with people
72 ATX MAN spring 2013
and stories and love and, yes, music. It started off with Rayvon and Friends, a simply awesome gospel group from Austin, singing acapella Angels Watching Over Me. And then Alice Spencer, Trish Murphy, Kyle Crusham and Danny Levin did an upbeat yet soulful version of I’ll Fly Away. Rayvon and Friends came back with Swing Low Sweet Chariot. With the powerful service coming to an end, enter Kevin Russell, Donny Wynn, Mike Longoria, Alice Saffer and all the other musicians. Kevin started it up with a ukulele and a soft and healing rendition of Bob Marley’s Three Little Birds set sail. Don’t worry about a thing, ’cause every little thing gonna be all right. The other musicians and vocalists filled the hall and all hearts too. I was standing with Wally with my arm around him. Don’t worry about a thing, ’cause every little thing gonna be all right. It then struck me for the umpteenth time: Why is Austin so special? It is
a place in time where music—whether in the old Armadillo World Headquarters, Antone’s, Stubb's, the old Backyard, ACL Music Festival, Austin City Limits, the Continental Club, the Mohawk, Holy Mountain or Emo’s—speaks to everyone, reaches out and touches everyone. At an emotional and celebratory memorial service for Saint Judy, as her family called her, music was once again embedded in the souls of all of us who are blessed to call Austin our home and the live music capital of our world. Every precious moment has a song that will lift us up, if only we listen. The music filled the hearts and souls of Wally and his family and friends at the Wildflower Center. Singing of the life and love of Judy Williams helped us know exactly how to feel: Don’t worry about a thing, ’cause every little thing gonna be all right. Listen to the music that surrounds us here in Austin and find yourself being lifted up as well.
Illustration by Sarah Quatrano.
“Don’t worry about a thing ’Cause every little thing gonna be all right. ” – Three Little Birds, Bob Marley
VOLVO SAVED MY LIFE CLUB The Volvo Saved My Life Club recognizes owners who share one belief: A Volvo Saved their lives. And, while we’re very proud of the Volvo Saved My Life Club, we hope for the day when potentially fatal car accidents will be a thing of the past. Until then, we end with this heartfelt wish and advice: Drive safely.
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