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atx| man winter




rising sons Passing the torch to the next generation of successful entrepreneurs.

By Steve Uhler Photos by Rudy Arocha


state of the arts Steering Austin’s

arts organizations through the best and the worst of times.

By John T. Davis photos by william russell 5

atx| man winter



Vince Young Steakhouse


The Buzz

12 The Buzz Roundup 14 Austin Innovator 16 On the Scene 18 Siren Songs: Hot Club of Cowtown and The Armadillo Christmas Bazaar

The good life 20 Guilty Pleasure: Austin's Best Hot Towel Shave

22 Trailer Treats: The Best of 2011 with Tiffany Harelik

24 Steakhouse Roundup 28 Rev it Up: Motorcycles 30 Good Sport: Running 32 Good Deeds: A Glimmer of Hope and Upcoming Events

34 Getaway: California Dreaming

The essentials

50 Grooming: New Men's Fragrances 52 Style: Looks for Every Holiday Party 6   ATX MAN winter 2011

in the know 54 Health: Tips for Prevention 56 Fitness: Dancing with your Core 58 Family Man: What Kids Should Be Thankful For

60 Sports Report: College Basketball Preview 62 Opposite Sex: What to Buy Her for Christmas 64 Finance: End of Year Investing 66 Real Estate: Top Zip Codes for 2012 68 Legal: Mistaken Paternity 70 Single Guy: New Year's Resolutions 72 The Last Word: Year of the Giving Man on the cover // Clint Strait: Vanishing Elephant jacket, available at Stag. Boss Black By Hugo Boss Lucas Check sport shirt, available at Saks Fifth Avenue. Denim jeans, Clint’s own. Robert Strait: Hickey Freeman suit, available at Capra & Cavelli. Saks Fifth Avenue Men’s Collection striped sport shirt, available at Saks Fifth Avenue. Pendleton Portland Collection wool tie, available at Stag. J.Crew Silver tie bar, available at

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Joelle Pearson copy editor

Chantal Rice Fashion + Style editor

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Marjorie Lee Garretson Contributors

Dara Allen, Rudy Arocha, Brett Barnes, Sam Colletti, John Croxton, John T. Davis, Elisa Ferrari, Meg Haley, James W. Hamilton III, Tiffany Harelik, Caleb Kerr, Eric Leech, Ryan Nail, Clay Nichols, Joelle Pearson, William Russell, Roy Spence, Chad Swiatecki, Steve Uhler, Michelle Valles Account Executives

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From the Editor


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Photo by Korey Howell.


iving your son a skill is better than giving him one thousand pieces of gold. -Chinese proverb Looking to the father and son duos we are featuring in this issue, I would say that for them this Chinese proverb has proven true, especially when you realize how passionate the sons are in carrying on the vocations and traditions of their fathers. We took a look at three of Austin’s most successful father and son duos to learn what they share in common, what they learn from each other and why the son chose to live in Austin and follow in his father’s footsteps. Strait Music is a third-generation business that was opened in 1963 by Robert’s father, Dan, with a proud history carried on by his grandson, Clint. Jack Gilmore, perennial local favorite chef and owner of Jack Allen’s Kitchen can’t hide his pride when he talks about the success of son Bryce Gilmore and his popular new restaurant, Barley Swine. Tom Meredith and his son, Will, mirror the other’s thought when they speak, with passion about philanthropy making an impact on the city they call home and the world beyond. Indeed, finding a way to allocate a thousand pieces of gold is not as simple as one might think. A thousand pieces of gold equates to $1, 788,000, based on the current price for one ounce ($1,788) and that might come in handy to several of Austin’s arts organizations. John T. Davis caught up with some of Austin’s most prominent executive directors to discuss the outlook for the arts community in these tough times and looking ahead to 2012. The current "state of the arts" in Austin may surprise you. Speaking of surprises, if you thought you knew all there was to know about Austin’s prolific steakhouse scene, think again. Take a tour of Austin’s best steakhouses with Russell Pawlowski if you want to learn how to enjoy this most masculine of culinary experiences. Finally, in this issue of ATX Man, we are proud to announce the launch of The Year of the Giving Man project, the brainchild of columnist Roy Spence. Together we are reaching out and encouraging every Austin man (and woman) to make 2012 the Year of Giving. The premise is simple: Determine something you are passionate about and pledge to give of your time, talent or treasure. Your pledge doesn’t cost a thing. Roy is following his passion of mentoring and supporting budding entrepreneurs by continuing his “Don’t Do Mild” award in association with the Rise Conference. I am pledging to raise monies to fund a micro-loan through A Glimmer of Hope, founded by Austinites Phillip and Donna Berber, and to put together a giving circle to pay for tuition for a Mahiga High School student in Kenya, founded by Austinites Turk and Christy Pipkin. Read the Last Word (p. 72) by Roy Spence, find your passion and declare your giving intention. This time next year we will celebrate the difference your pledges have made. Knowing that my children have followed my example more often than they have followed my advice, I can’t think of anything more worthwhile than to show them that through a giving heart we receive far more than we give. I encourage you to go to manpledge and sign up today. I look forward to reading about the difference those pledges make individually and collectively. A man with a giving heart is a man with a heart of gold. Happy holidays to you and yours!


The subject of fathers and sons holds special interest for writer Steve Uhler. “I was adopted,” says Steve, “so that whole nature-vs.-nurture riddle fascinates me. What do we learn from our parents, and what do we simply inherit? “For instance, the way certain genetic traits are passed along, particularly the voice. When Julian Lennon sings, I hear his dad’s voice. When Chris Wallace delivers the news, I hear his father, Mike. “I was watching Dancing With The Stars around the time I was researching this article. Did you ever notice that Chaz Bono sounds just like his dad? It makes you wonder: Before the operation, did he sound like his mom?” Steve has been a contributor to such diverse publications as The Austin Chronicle, Filmfax, Cat Fancy, Rolling Stone, Austin Monthly and more. This is his first article for Austin Man.

Cover photographer Rudy Arocha is a native Texan who moved to Austin eight years ago to purse his education in fine arts as a sculptor. He later redicovered his passion for photography when his grandfather gave him a camera as a gift. He now attends the Art Institute of Austin and is months away from graduating with a degree in photography. Rudy 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 longtime girlfriend, Maggie.

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Foodie Alert

Review of exclusive Agustin Huneeus Wine dinner. Five wines from master winemaker Agustin Huneeus, including those from his prestigious Qunitessa Estate in Rutherford, CA, paired with a five-course meal from Chef Erick Nixon of Fleming’s.

Best of the Fests

Must-read books and must-see films from the Texas Book Festival and the Austin Film Festival

Dancing With The Stars

ATX Man fitness guru and Dancing with the Stars-Austin participant Ryan Nail gives us the inside scoop on the 2011 participants and competition.

More Sports Predictions

Brian Jones’ Sports Report featuring CBS Sports analyst Jon Rothstein on the 2011-2012 college basketball season. > To Keep An Eye On > Teams Under the Radar > Player of the Year Candidates > Teams that will Bounce Back > Transfers that Will Make An Impact > Freshmen to Watch


AND the BCS match-ups, outlook and predictions.


Concert, film and book reviews. Foodie Alerts. More ATX Man events, launch party and On the Scene photos.

1 0   ATX MAN winter 2011 1 1

the buzz

Concerts Willie Nelson Dec. 30 & 31, ACL Live Willie Nelson, the man whose music is pretty much the sound of Texas, returns to his hometown for a two-night stand to ring in the new year at the palatial new music venue he helped create. Now that he’s broken in the new space— his February show that debuted ACL Live to the public was a night just short of mastery—expect him to be loose as he takes that stage again, this time for a show billed as “with family and friends.” That could mean anything; daughter Paula, nephew Freddie Fletcher, old pals like Ray Benson and a host of others. But at this point, we’re pretty much all Willie’s friends, which these shows will no doubt reaffrim. Also coming up: The BoDeans, Dec. 3, Antone’s Cake, Dec. 4, Stubb’s The Wailers, Dec. 6, Antone’s Kelly Willis & Bruce Robison, Dec. 10, Paramount Theatre

Kat Edmonson, Dec. 11, One World Theatre

Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Dec. 21, Erwin Center

Blood, Sweat & Tears, Feb. 3, One World Theatre

Aaron Neville, Dec. 13, ACL Live

Bob Schneider, Dec. 31, Paramount Theatre

Los Lobos, Feb. 4, One World Theatre

Asleep at the Wheel, Dec. 17, Paramount Theatre

B.J. Thomas, Jan. 21, One World Theatre

Loretta Lynn, Feb. 17, ACL Live


Wheatsville Arts Festival

Dec. 3 & 4, Spiderhouse, 2915 Guadalupe

A juried festival featuring more than 60 artists selling jewelry, paintings, photography, pottery and other unique gifts while musical acts including Ted Roddy and Paul Kemperer perform on two stages. Free. For more info, visit

Ransom Center adds Nobel Prize winner archive The list of celebrated literary archives housed by the University of Texas grew recently with the addition of the collected works of UT alum and Nobel Prize winner J. M. Coetzee. The archive—more than 150 document boxes plus several filing cabinets of journals, manuscripts and other literary documents—spans more than 50 years, from the time the reclusive South African native, now 71, began a literary career that saw him accumulate dozens of awards, including the 2003 Nobel Prize In Literature. The collected works are stored for research viewing at the Harry Ransom Center. For more info visit,

Chef Clinton Bertrand and Restauratuer Brian O’Neill Bring Fine French Cuisine and Romantic Ambience to Bistrot Mirabelle. Take one new owner, a new interior and a new chef. Add a new menu and mix thoroughly. Voila, you have a newly incarnated romantic French bistro located in Northwest Hills. The lunch and dinner menus feature authentic Southern French fare. Think escargot, a house-made charcuterie plate and mussels with white wine and shallots, as well as bouillabaisse and coq au vin. A fabulous Sunday Brunch is also on the way. Just say crème brûlée, pop a bottle of champagne and, ooo la la, you may score big for Valentine's Day or any other romantic evening for that matter.

1 2   ATX MAN winter 2011

The one

Event: English High Tea Before Arcadia Saturday, Feb. 11

5 EVENTS to Stay Fit Austin Marathon

Featuring more than 20,000 runners—imagine more than a full Erwin Center running from downtown at once—and more than that in spectators all along the way, the Austin Marathon pretty much takes over most of the city for an entire day. Not that we’re complaining since more than two dozen charities benefit from the event that gives Austin another chance to show off its reputation as one of the fittest, most active cities in the country. For more info, visit

By Joelle Pearson

Jingle Bell 5K, Dec. 4 Reindeer Run 5K, Dec. 18 Round Rock Resolution Run, Jan. 1 Pure To Pure, Feb. 4

John Leguizamo Feb. 9-11 Paramount Theatre An under-appreciated actor and a firebrand on stage, comedian John Leguizamo has moved beyond doing traditional stand-up routines and brings Ghetto Klown, his latest one-man show to Austin for three shows at the Paramount Theatre. The follow-up to his Tony-nominated Sexaholix...A Love Story, the new show is deeply autobiographical and follows Leguizamo’s early days growing up in Queens, NY, up through his comedy, film and stage careers, with a cavalcade of memorable characters and experiences running through them. You’ll laugh, but you’ll also learn something about trying to make it in America. For more info, visit

By Chad Swiatecki • Twitter: @theechad and @ubthedj • •

Arcadia, “a perfect marriage of ideas and high comedy,” is billed as a romantic comedy, but the script is a complex tapestry of dichotomies: past and present, Romanticism and Classicism, thought and feeling. Nominated for Tony Awards in 2005 and 2011, Tom Stoppard’s creation is considered one of the finest plays in the English language. On Valentine’s Day weekend, Austin Shakespeare hosts an unforgettable evening including traditional English high tea at 5 p.m. preceding the show, with a bevy of teas, delectable tea sandwiches and British sweets provided by Full English Café. Guaranteed to impress your sweetie!

app: Spotify When Spotify (the European answer to Pandora) launched its U.S. service, Wired magazine hailed it as “a veritable dream come true for music lovers.” The streaming music service accesses a range of major and indie labels, including Warner, EMI, Universal and Sony, allowing users to create and share playlists (think, customize radio channels and link to social media. The app is a palm-sized musical buffet; premium users can even access playlists offline. Available for iPhone and as a re-tooled Android preview. Visit

Book: I Want My MTV By Craig Marks and Rob Tannenbaum. Dutton, $29.95 What began as a bumbling operation without funding, experience or foresight would end up as MTV, the behemoth that forced a musical paradigm shift in its three decades of existence. How did they do it? In I Want My MTV, nearly 400 interviews from industry insiders recount stories of disdain and discrimination, humiliation or neutralization that brewed from the profitable stew of sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll. It’s funny, it’s horrible, it’s not surprising. This 608-page tome appeals to lovers and haters alike.

CD: New Multitudes Release date: January 2012 In 2012, American legend Woody Guthrie would turn 100. His songs have circled the world “like a fast train on a well-oiled track,” according to new site, devised by the Guthries and the Grammy Museum that serves as a hub for centennial celebrations. One such effort is New Multitudes, a collaborative work from Jay Farrar, My Morning Jacket’s Jim James, Will Johnson and Anders Parker that will feature unpublished Guthrie writings set to music. Fans of Mermaid Avenue understand the power of these collaborations.

Gadget: GoPro HD Hero2 Some our favorite viral moments have been created on the GoPro HD: a mountain biker getting head-butted by a gazelle, thieving seagulls carrying us across a city. This walletsized HD camera has unlimited potential for sports enthusiasts, filmmakers and laymen. The Hero2, released in October, is wearable, waterproof, has a 170-degree wide-angle lens, 1080p video capacity and shoots 11-megapixel photos at a rate of 10 photos per second. Your bragging rights await. Visit for more information. 1 3

the buzz austin innovator

JB Hager and Paul Boukadakis MTV Unplugged step aside. Austin’s own On-Airsteaming has arrived. By Chad Swiatecki It’s entirely possible that JB Hager has created the 21st century’s answer to MTV Unplugged right here in Austin. What does it look like? Touring bands from throughout the world playing stripped-down, intimate sets in an Airstream trailer decked out with some of the best audio and video equipment available. In a little more than a year, local radio personality Hager and business partner Paul Boukadakis have poured much of their time, hearts and money in to On-Airstreaming, an Austin-based website ( that features free, high-quality, mostly acoustic performances from bands in an unconventional setting. It’s meant to help shake bands out of the doldrums of life on the road and in coffee shops, and provide a new music alternative for listeners. “When bands come in, our goal is to make them feel at home, so they can relax and chill out a little bit before they play and do something really special,” Hager says of the site, which averages one taping per week with names such as G. Love, Josh Ritter, The Raveonettes, Guster and more. “You get a really unique version of the songs because the space we have makes them perform acoustic, but they like it and the bands always wind up hanging out, especially foreign bands because they like the hospitality.” The project began after South By Southwest 2010 when Hager—a big music fan who can’t spend much time in Austin clubs because of his 4 a.m. wake-up call for his radio show on Mix 94.7—was frustrated by not being able to find a dependable source of good music online. Most music blogs were too “niche-y,” and live footage clips on sites like YouTube were of poor quality, leaving him thirsting for something

1 4   ATX MAN winter 2011

better. A chance meeting with video director and filmmaker Boukadakis while he was in town from Los Angeles got the two talking about a site that could showcase sought-after bands in high-quality video segments. Not long after that meeting, the series was up and running out of Hager’s 28-foot trailer that’s stationed in Austin’s Pecan Grove RV Park. (The trailer also shows up in special locations for events like SXSW.) Boukadakis says the trailer motif for OnAirstreaming gives the site a unique brand identity, while the quality of the featured bands and videos has sparked interest from record labels looking to showcase bands and record a session while they tour through Austin. “It’s a music town and this feels homegrown because there’s a mysteriously cool vibe that people feel when they’re in Austin,” he says. “We could have

started this in any city, but Austin was so great because it’s just on fire right now in terms of how people view it, and they look for great music when they think of Austin.” Entirely self-funded by Hager and Boukadakis, the moneymaking end of things is coming in to focus now that On-Airstreaming has gathered almost two years worth of videos it can license to retail outlets and other commercial interests that need music content. That means for a while in to the future, Hager’s trailer will be rockin’. “I’d like for it to become an Austin staple, so when you see the trailer you’ll know there’s some good recording going on,” Hager says. “We’ve had offers for funding, but we like what we’re doing ourselves, and we’re in it for the long haul.” Find them on the web at

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the buzz

siren songs


of the Armadillo Christmas Bazaar By Joelle Pearson

Hot Club of Cowtown This hard-swinging western trio, bred in New York’s East Village and now based in Austin, may be Texas’ greatest little swing band. Fiddler and vocalist Elana James, along with bassist Jake Ervin and guitarist Whit Smith, have been musical ambassadors for the State Department and some of the youngest folks accepted to the Texas Western Swing Hall of Fame. Hot Club of Cowtown brings its hot jazz/Americana/ vintage-folk fusion to the Armadillo Christmas Bazaar, with bows flying and pompadours bobbing in a flurry that would make Bob Wills holler.

Catch Hot Club of Cowtown

Thursday, Dec. 22, 12:30 p.m. at the Armadillo Christmas Bazaar

Check Out Sirens of the Armadillo Christmas Bazaar Patricia Vonne—Friday, Dec. 16, 8 p.m. Eliza Gilkyson—Saturday, Dec. 17, 3:30 p.m. Kat Edmonson—Sunday, Dec. 18, 12:30 p.m.; Ruthie Foster—3:30 p.m. Marcia Ball—Tuesday, Dec. 20, 8 p.m. The Trishas—Wednesday, Dec. 21, 12:20 p.m.

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{good life} guilty pleasure

Close Encounters finley’s eight-step shave is a masculine right of passage. By Joelle Pearson / Photo by William Russell Like a well-tailored suit or music playing from a velvety LP, a straight-razor shave transports you to a time when values were stronger, whiskey was sweeter and grooming was a languid, debonair ritual. Finley’s Barber Shop preserves the golden era by offering a perfect eight-step shave in a vintage atmosphere with a modern twist. Combining steam machines, hot and cold towels, personalized scents from The Art of Shaving or Truefitt & Hill, and a finishing neck-and-shoulder massage, it’s a shave fit for the Don Draper is us all. Imbibe a complimentary beverage beforehand in the lounge and toast to generations past. Booking appointments is recommended. Visit or call 512.520.8326 (Westlake) or 512.394.8684 (Lakeway). 2 0   ATX MAN winter 2011


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{good life}

Best Lookin’ Trailer The Local Yolk

Don’t get me started on the cute factor. It’s an aqua-blue Airstream with a menu concept based on egg sandwiches. Try the Florence, which has pesto, mozzarella and tomato with a fried egg.

Trailer Treats The best of 2011 Best Waist Expander By Tiffany Harelik Photos by Elisa Ferrari, Austin’s trailer-food culture was born in 2006 with the founding fathers of Torchy’s Tacos, The Mighty Cone, Hey Cupcake! and Flip Happy Crepes all conspiring to serve gourmet street food out of creative, miniature kitchenson-wheels. Since then, the health department has issued more than 2,000 permits to entrepreneurs following suit and attempting to make their mark on trailer-food history. Austin easily has more than 100 vendors grouped in clumps of two to six trailers per park, concentrated in downtown, South Austin, East Austin and the campus area. This year, Austin saw continued growth in and enthusiasm for the trailer-food community. Here are some highlights from 2011.

2 2   ATX MAN winter 2011

Gourdough’s The Boss Hogg offers potato salad,

pulled pork and barbecue sauce atop a freshly fried doughnut served out of a vintage Airstream trailer. This one is something the Dukes would be proud of.

Best Unique Menu

Wurst Tex As a former Rattlesnake Roundup Queen, my taste buds are biased. The Predator and Prey is one of the sausages on the Wurst Tex menu that contains rattlesnake, rabbit and pork with jalapenos. Two fun sausage options for vegetarians are the 04 Delight (a combination of smoked apples, sage and potatoes) and the Veggiano, which contains eggplant, fennel and garlic.

OMG-er. Plus, you can take it into the Gibson Bar, Luke’s next-door neighbor, and grab a beer in the air conditioning.

Best Things in Sliced Bread

Best Bang for Your Buck

Municipal Taste The Velvet Elvis includes sliced

bananas served on grilled sourdough with bacon, peanut butter and habanero jelly. OMG! ’Nuff said.

Luke’s Inside Out The Shrimp features grilled

rosemary chipotle shrimp with blue cheese, apple and honey on griddled sourdough. Another

Trailer Food Diaries Cookbook For $20, you can

have close to 100 recipes from your favorite trailer-food vendors in Austin. This is the first edition with more to come highlighting other cities. Find it on and stocked in many local stores.

Fastest-Growing Trailer-Food Business

Torchy’s Tacos Easy. Starting from humble beginnings with one cook and a trailer, Chef Mike Rypka has conquered the Lone Star State with his taco revolution. Torchy’s still has a trailer at the South Austin Trailer Park and Eatery on South First Street, along with seven other brick-andmortar establishments in Austin, one in Dallas and one in Houston. That makes for a total of 10 locations where taco junkies can feed their hunger pangs. My favorite? The Scarecrow was the taco of the month in October: pumpkin seed-breaded chicken tenders and roasted poblano peppers, escabeche carrots, queso fresco, cilantro and creamy chipotle ranch served on a flour tortilla.

Best Trailer Park

South Congress Trailer Park After all, this is

the most notable spot on the trailer-park map and we are angst-ridden wondering if or when it will relocate due to new developments. Walking from iconic Hey Cupcake! down to the famous Mighty Cone trailer with a view of the Capitol makes for a nostalgic must-have trailer experience.

Best Eco-Conscious Trailer

Sun Farm Kitchens This trailer gets five stars in my trailer-trash review for all the ways they are taking care of business the green way. To keep the food locally sourced, many menu items are purchased from Hope Farmers Market, the Austin Farmers Market, Johnson’s Backyard Garden and Greenling. They pick up extra items at Wheatsville, where local produce is available. My menu suggestion? The Wow! Salad has mixed greens and baby spinach, cubes of avocado, peaches, sliced olives, shredded carrot and beets topped with sprouts.

Best Nod to the Culture

Gypsy Picnic Trailer Food Festival Created by Trailer Food Diaries and C3 Presents in 2010, the second-annual Gypsy Picnic was held Oct. 22. Close to 40 trailer-food vendors gathered at Auditorium Shores and festival-goers enjoyed a wide range of live music and special events.

Stay tuned to all things food trailer throughout the year at 2 3

{good life} taste

austin steakhouses The Ultimate Fine-Dining Experience By Russell Pawlowski

vince young steakhouse

2 4   ATX MAN winter 2011

The mission was simple: Navigate through

the cornerstone steakhouses of Austin in search of the perfect meal. I knew the dangers that I would most likely encounter: a quick transformation into food snobbery, an inevitable double chin, and yes, lurking along somewhere might be the twomartini cougar ready to pounce. Regardless, I was ready to see if these perennial powerhouses of carnivorous delight were really worth the sticker-shock menus. I set out not just looking for the best steak, chop or cocktail: what I wanted to examine was the dining experience. Why? Any man that is worth his boot leather should have some knowledge around a grill. Living in Austin, we have access to Whole Foods, Central Market and a few top-notch butcher shops so locating prime cuts of meat isn’t a problem. If we can pop the cap on a cold Shiner while we hear the meat sizzle on the grill, why then dine at a steakhouse? Destination dining. Not only are you allowing the best chefs in town to present to you a decadent dish, but also stepping outside your culinary comfort zone. With that modus operandi, I set out to try what each steakhouse had to offer. The restaurants toured were all given the same directive: Show me what you take pride in. The menu was then closed and slid across the table. I had no clue what they would bring out, but I knew that from a culinary perspective, I was on an adventure. I was like a kid sitting at the top of the stairs waiting to hear that it was time to slide down and see what Santa brought at Christmastime. When was the last time you felt like that, gentlemen? Excitement? Intrigue? Life is too short for pleated khakis and mild salsa.

Q Vince Young

Fleming’s Steakhouse

301 San Jacinto Blvd.

When you’re going Sunday night dinner, anytime that your sweetie is shopping, for cocktails after work. What you are having Anything from their new small plates menu, the Fleming’s potatoes, a wine flight, homemade carrot cake for dessert.


Night you are going Friday or Saturday Server you are requesting Jim Kasprzyk, an

industry professional that knows just how to engage each diner and enhance the meal. What you are having Pork belly appetizer, sharing a Tomahawk steak, and anything that contains their own bacon. I mean anything. The experience Perhaps the perfect launching pad for the sexiest night out downtown I was initially biased when I walked into the

Vince Young Steakhouse. Too often athleteowned restaurants rely too much on the prowess and fan base of the athlete than the food. The Vince Young Steakhouse is done right and the suspects to blame are husband and wife Executive Chef, Phillip Brown and Laura McIngvale-Brown, who are running the show. Draped in a sexy chocolate interior complete with crystal curtains and a serpentine seating arrangement that ensures guests a cozy booth, you soon realize that this is very much a high-end Vegas-style steakhouse without the two-month reservation waitlist. If you are starting an adventurous night out on the town, this place quickly sets the perfect tone. Start off with the pork belly appetizer. Lean back. Close your eyes. Admire the fact that despite sitting in an open room, the only noise you hear is the conversation with your date and the delicate sound of live jazz emanating from the bar. Allow the pork belly to melt in your mouth. Exhale. The steak selection was the Tomahawk cut that resembled something straight out of the Flintstones. Have your wait staff slice this Peter Luger-style to make this immediately enjoyable without the pressure of having to perform field surgery on what looks like half a side of beef. This cut is meant to be enjoyed together and I am hoping that after you admire the shock value of such a unique cut of meat, you’ll appreciate its flavor profiles. Living in Austin, I heard the Vince Young Steakhouse touting their own house-cured bacon. Gimmicky? No. I never joke about bacon. This is the star performer on their steak house wedge salad, but allow me to give you the inside foodie scoop: Step outside your comfort zone and create the ultimate decadent sundae. You guessed it: small-batch maple syrup artisan ice cream topped with crumbles of their ever so delectable bacon. A pregnancy craving? Perhaps. But take my word; this off-menu Frankenstein creation will have you wondering just why you never thought about this at home. Bacon does make everything better.

The Domain, 11600 Century Oaks Terrace

Being a large chain, what I am looking for here is consistency. I’ll trade my local instincts for spot-on service and an impeccable product. Sure, I am genuinely more critical of larger chains, but the GMs at these establishments realize that and make even the average guy feel like Tony Soprano walking into his favorite Italian haunt. I like that. I immediately notice Darryl White, managing partner, Lobster tempura and Bruce Hamilton, manager, both impeccably dressed, running the main floor of Fleming’s like two pit bosses overseeing a perfectly orchestrated casino—each patron feeling like Frank, Dino or Sammy, even if just for the evening. Black napkins. Know their importance? Neither did I. When you or your date are wearing a black ensemble, white napkins tend to leave lint on your lap. Your waiter quickly deduces this and brings you the appropriate napkin. I’d never notice that. Now, I take pride in expecting it. Nice touch. The idea of tapas generally leaves me hungry and I always joke that a rough Spanish translation of “tapas” is “go home hungry.” Obviously you’re supposed to order several of these, but guessing the approximate number is generally more difficult than the Calculus 4 class that I failed three times in college. Fleming’s solutions? Small plates. These truly are the perfect size and offer you the chance to try several different flavor profiles. Invite your significant other and order the following: lamb small plates, ahi tuna, Fleming’s potatoes for a side, and then ask the server to recommend a wine flight. Inside scoop: These small plates are featured during happy hour from 5 to 7 p.m. for a mere six bucks. Parents, my advice to you for your high school kiddies going to prom or homecoming is sliding them a $75 gift card for the evening. Easy parking, safe environment, top-notch service, and with the addition of small plates and a well-selected side to share, you have the perfect meal.

Eddie V’s

9400 B Arboretum Blvd. The night you’re going Friday for date night The location The Arboretum Server you’re requesting Philip Bartholomew.

Close the menu and let Philip bring out the house specialties. He has a deeper food knowledge than Zagat, and will not only offer the perfect wine pairing, but will help educate you as to how each entrée is constructed. What you’re having The house Caesar salad, the crab cakes, black truffle mac and cheese, and sharing a New York strip The experience Grab your date and get away from it all. Eddie V’s house Caesar salad was the initial eye-opener. Often Caesar salads fall victim to being either a soggy mess

of wilted greens, or on the opposite end of the spectrum, far too dry to enjoy. Eddie V’s not only found the sweet spot, but also raised the bar with the addition of anchovies marinated in sherry. A very nice touch. The tang of the Caesar was then met by the rich, creamy decadence of the black truffle mac and cheese. Normally this steakhouse staple utilizes just truffle oil; here I was delighted to see that the dish actually contained truffles. Costly for the kitchen? Sure. These are some of the most expensive ingredients they have to source. The flavor that it brings to the dish will knock your socks off. Worth every penny. We opted for a New York strip and you should as well. Why? How many times have you ordered the same cut of meat when you dine out? If you are like most people, you become “cut loyal” and miss out on the different flavor profiles that each prime cut offers. Close your eyes and sample the strip at Eddie V’s and I guarantee you’ll discover thinking outside the filet is quickly rewarded. Nice job, fellas. 2 5

{good life} taste Sullivan’s SteakHouse 300 Colorado St.

The night you’re going Thursday What you are having A cocktail in the lounge, then the

bone-in filet in the dining room.

The new experience Next door, “Sully’s,” a Mexican

fare brain child of Executive Chef Carlos Garcia and GM Shane Lambert. The smoky Gouda guacamole will absolutely change your thoughts on the perfect complement to chips and salsa. Try this. The best scenes for a young professional start at Sullivan’s for happy hour on Thursday night. The moment you walk in the door, you realize that you are on the edge of a well-dressed, beautiful crowd of people enjoying martinis and gently swaying to some of the hottest piano I’ve heard in Austin. It’s times like these I wish I had an

Gentleman’s Guide to Enjoying Steakhouses Aston-Martin to roll up in out front. Sigh. Step away from the cosmos and glasses of scotch to the back dining area and you’ll find Shane Lambert, GM, zipping around the back like a busy worker bee amongst business men and large groups toasting to special occasions. I certainly respect a man that hustles, and one common thread you will find in these establishments is that management clearly wants you to have an enjoyable experience. You’ll find that the bone-in filet, albeit a rather unimaginative choice, takes your traditional notions of filet mignon to a new level. I’ve found that filets tend to be so processed that you lose the true flavor of the meat. Not here. This crown gem of the Sullivan’s lineup did not disappoint. Admittedly, there is a keen sense of satisfaction in seeing a well-cleaned bone on your plate as you lean back in your booth with that perfect full sensation.

Make an evening of it. Relax. You are about to sample some of the best comfort food on the planet. There’s no sense in being in a rush. If you are, you’re better off eating at home and saving the experience for another day. Have an open mind. Close the menu. Slide it across the table and tell your server what you’ve historically liked and what you may be in the mood for. Let them pick. These establishments are staffed by a professional wait staff that knows food and wine. Allow them to show you what the kitchen can do. Sure, it’s going out on a limb and involves trust, but remember, without a bit of adventure in the culinary world, we might never have tried oysters, or better yet, milk. Share. I know your mother and every elementary school teacher told you that you need to work on this, but here is where it counts. It easily eliminates the awkward silences and forces you to be a gentleman. You’ll try new things together and be able to sample a wider range of entrees. Why are you on a date anyway? Try wine or cocktail flights. These are small samples of wine (or in the unique case of Perry’s Bar, 79 martinis.) Again, once you hit the perfect pairing with wine and food, you’ll instantly understand why this is a $10 billion per year industry. Again, you are sharing. See above. Throw on a jacket, gentlemen. You are going out. Dust off the sport coat that you wore to graduation or to your nephew’s bar mitzvah and help elevate the race. Never underestimate the power of a sharpdressed man in a blazer, crisp shirt and perfectly shined boots or appropriate shoes—an immediate smile from your date and respect from the hostess. It’s time to raise the bar, guys. Besides, your Affliction T-shirt has quickly become a joke. It’s time to grow up. Never order the same thing twice. If you could test-drive a new sports car every day on your way to work, would you? Then why fall back on old standbys? Step outside your comfort zone. Insist on a booth. I spoke to the cow and the cow said it’s fine for you to comfortably sit on his hide as you enjoy his tenderloin. The animal gave you a delicious steak; the least you can do is grace him with your derriere. Besides, you have a kitchen table at home. Do you have a velvety soft kitchen booth? Didn’t think so. If the food and overall experience are exceptional, tell your friends. If not, tell your waiter. You are paying a premium for your meal and the beauty of the recession is that you are now the boss. Don’t feel bad. Each place needs this feedback to grow and get better. What would happen if no one ever told you about that spinach in your teeth?

26   austinwoman o ct o ber 2 0 1 1

Perry’s Steakhouse 114 West 7th St.

Day you are going Anytime What you are wearing Dress code encouraged: business casual. Jacket not re-

quired, but if you wore one, your mom would be proud.

Server you’re requesting Ask for Kate Debolt, a passionate foodie that returned

to the industry and who clearly knows the menu. I would have no qualms about closing the menu and following her recommendations. What you are having House-made log cabin of Polish sausage, paired with the symphony kebab, or the Chateaubriand, a thick cut of steak that is taken from the tenderloin and prepared tableside. Of course, as an Austinite, you HAVE to try that pork chop. Experience The perfect combination of foodie paradise, carnivore delight and progressive cool factor – you’ll quickly be impressed. Perry’s sits nestled on West Seventh Street like a Texan leaning against a hill and overlooking the sights of downtown Austin. The building actually used to be an old bank, and the owners have paid homage to its old Texas roots. You may have heard of the near cult following that the restaurant has over its pork chop lunch special, and having tasted the dinner portion of this entrée, I can only weep with sorrow for anyone who doesn’t eat pork – you are clearly missing out. Walking in the door has a different feeling than the other places we visited. Why? Immediately you notice the delicate aroma of meat smoking in the kitchen. Despite the gorgeous refined art deco interior, the notion that somewhere racks of meat are slowly being smoked with pecan wood awakens an inner caveman. I was giddy by the


time I sat down. The layout of Perry’s is amazing: a dark chocolate labyrinth of stairs, lofts, secret vaults and woven stone walls. You’d be hard pressed not to envision a Texas pageant queen slowly making her way down the spiral staircase. A gorgeous interior can seduce the eyes, but what about the food? The place has a pedigree unlike anything else in Austin. Bob Perry started off as a butcher and then transitioned to a restaurateur. Who better to know cuts of meat and proper food preparation than the man who was raised overseeing the raw cuts each day? Try a sampling of the house-made Polish sausage and you’ll agree that life as a butcher should be a prerequisite for a steakhouse owner. Impressive notes: Bar 79, a lounge located within Perry’s, actually offers a “Mixology Creation” martini flight. You can sample three of 14 unique creations the same way you would sample wine. They arrive chilled at your table awaiting your taste buds; the perfect way to start off dinner or relax after work. I like the fact that Perry’s truly takes pride in items that you wouldn’t normally find in a traditional steakhouse: the Chateaubriand is a rare cut of steak that is said to have been created for a French diplomat to Napoleon. What you’ll savor is a buttery soft medallion that will blow any filet you’ve had out of the pasture. This truly is my favorite cut of meat and I’m glad to know it’s now obtainable in Austin. What I didn’t know was just how progressive Perry’s actually was. Complete with hidden flat screens and the down-tempo jazz of St. Germain quietly playing through the in-house speakers, I was blown away. Come to find out Brandon Quinn, Perry’s GM, worked his way up the ranks from a busboy to captaining the ship. There is a determination and pride within that and clearly this is easy to see at Perry’s. Inside scoop: Arrive early to admire the magnitude of such a beautiful interior or book the “Vault Room,” the actual vault of the old bank that has been refurbished into an intimate dining room. Put simply, this menu knocked everything out of the park. 2 7

{good rides}

rev it up


bmw r1200gs adventure

> Price $20,990

EPA Fuel Economy 50 mpg

Engine Air-cooled/oil-cooled Boxer twin-cylinder

Fuel Capacity 8.7 gallons

Warranty Three years/36,000 miles

yamaha super tenere Price $14,500 EPA Fuel Economy 44 mpg Engines 1199cc, liquid-cooled, 4-stroke 2-cylinder DOHC Fuel Capacity 6 gallons Warranty One year (limited factory warranty)

honda 2011 cbr 1000rr abs Price $14,399 EPA Fuel Economy 37 mpg Engine Inline 4-cylinder, DOHC, four valves per cylinder Transmission Close-ratio 6-speed Fuel Capacity 4.7 gallons Warranty One-year transferable, unlimited-mileage limited warranty; extended coverage available with a Honda Protection Plan. 2 8   ATX MAN winter 2011

Harley Davidson 2012 Night rod special Price $15,299 EPA Fuel Economy 37 mpg Engine Liquid-cooled, Revolution®, 60° V-twin Fuel Capacity 5 gallons Warranty Two years/unlimited mileage





{good life} sport

The running man RunTex’s Paul Carrozza talks about the evolution of running in Austin.

Paul’s top pick

By Joelle Pearson The runner’s high. Once, it was just a euphemism. In recent years, however, German scientists proved that high-endurance exercise floods the brains with endorphins (natural opiates), a finding that explains what so many athletes already knew: Running is wonderfully addictive.

While some cite RunTex and Carrozza’s influence as the source of Austin’s joie de vive, he believes it’s only natural. To him, Austin’s fondness for the sport is a convergence of studies that find better nutrition, increased activity, ideal body weight and time spent outdoors result in healthier, happier citizens.

system that started with Ann Butler’s vision in 1971. One evening in London, while marveling at the manicured Thames River from her balcony, Butler wondered aloud to Lady Bird Johnson if Town Lake’s dismal shores “Running is could ever be so important for arresting. The spark of interest quality of life; the would spawn the human body feels Town Lake Beautification better when it’s on Committee, the move, at least spearheaded by Johnson and some of the time, facilitated by Butler’s husband, and running is an then-mayor Roy efficient way to Butler. Because get that done.” of their efforts, Austin now maintains one of -Paul Carrozza the largest trail systems in the country, with more than 193 miles of well-groomed paths that sprawl from the city’s epicenter in to the suburbs and through the Greenbelt.

“It’s become contagious among all demographics,” Carrozza says. “Running is important for quality of life; the human body feels better when it’s on the move, at least some of the time, and running is an efficient way to get that done.”

The science, the support, the terrain, the timelessness—Austin’s running culture can’t be credited to anything singular. Like Paul Carrozza, the sprightly RunTex founder, it won’t be stopping anytime soon.

It’s no surprise to learn Paul Carrozza, founder of RunTex, can’t remember a time in his life when he was not running. “I started about 48 years ago,” Carrozza says. He’s 49. The carved and confident CEO moved to Austin in 1985, about three years before founding RunTex. Back then, there were only a handful of organized races and people on the trails. It’s a hard picture to envision. Austin, ranked ninth among fittest cities in the United States by the American Fitness Index, has one of the largest running communities in the nation. The Butler Hike and Bike Trail (formerly the Town Lake Hike and Bike Trail) and the extended trail systems now accommodate thousands of runners daily. RunTex has helped to produce so many organized benefit races in Austin that some local businesses actually petitioned for fewer races, claiming they impeded foot traffic.

Carrozza attributes running’s popularity to the central, convenient nature of the trail system, a

3 0   ATX MAN winter 2011

Congress Avenue Mile, May 2012 A mostly downhill course, the Congress Avenue Mile is a fast, straight shot down Congress Avenue in downtown Austin. To Paul Carrozza, the mile run is the final test of athletic prowess. “You take the same amount of energy that a marathon requires and jam it in to a mile,” he says. It’s harder than it seems; many of the event’s attendees are former marathon runners, out to tackle the mile with a combination of speed meeting endurance. It’s part of a series of one-mile races that leads up to the invitation-only high school state championship boys and girls races.

Local Events Runs Austin Reindeer Run 5K and Kids K: Dec. 18 The GORUCK Challenge: March 24 Statesman Capitol 10K: March 25 Fifth annual St. James Mission 5K/1K run/walk: March 31 Casis Fun Run: April 15 Austin 10/20: April 15 The Maze (Trail Run): April 22 Marathons and Half Marathons 3M Half Marathon and Relay: Jan. 29 LIVESTRONG Austin Marathon and Half Marathon: Feb. 19 Triathlons and Duathlons Capital of Texas Triathlon: May 28 Couples Triathlon: July 13 Ironman Austin: Oct. 28 Resources (Texas triathlon forum) Texas Runner and Triathlete magazine

butler hike and bike trail

or hiking. In addition to the 5K paved trail, there are four miles of multi-use trails commonly shared by hikers or cyclists. Lush vegetation, diverse wildlife and low entrance fees make this park a popular day-trip for athletes. The Greenbelt Multiple entrances throughout Austin Palmer’s perspective: “Sometimes it can get busy on the weekends, but it’s the classic quick nature getaway. Also, use the Spyglass entrance for Tacodeli afterward.” Carrozza also recommends the Greenbelt for athletes interested in a more technical workout. With more than seven miles of unpaved terrain, these vibrant trails are a great way to satisfy the outdoorsman and runner in you at once. Since its mixed terrain trails are shared with mountain bikers, the Greenbelt is not recommended for novice runners. Note: the Greenbelt’s curfew is from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m.

Crossfit’s ben palmer on Austin’s running evolution Austin’s crown jewel may be the Butler Hike and Bike Trail, but less crowded and more technically challenging routes can be found outside the city center. ATX Man checked in with Ironman finisher and Crossfit Endurance coach Benjamin Palmer for his take on the best running spots in and near Austin. Visit for access to PDFs of trails in a vector file, which can be shrunk without distortion.

Walnut Creek Park 12138 N. Lamar Blvd. Palmer’s perspective: “An endlessly looping web of trails to get lost on, but you can easily find your way back to the parking lot. While not overtly technical, it does offer a good amount of sharp turns and hills.” Walnut Creek Park is full of twisting maze trails, which are excellent practice for athletes interested in trail running. Large double-track trails also loop around the park for less adventurous runners. The trail consists

Equipment and Supply Recommendations Via Vienta 5Alive Available at RunTex, Whole Foods and H-E-B/Central Market, $32 for a 32-ounce bottle This whole-food puree offers the nutritional benefits of five fruits and vegetables in a one-ounce serving. Rich in antioxidants, the supplement supports immunity, bone health and hormonal balance. “It’s a great thing to reach for when fruit isn’t handy, instead of loading up on sugars,” Carrozza says.

of natural stone, light gravel or dirt, no paved sections and four separate creek crossings. McKinney Falls State Park 5808 McKinney Falls Parkway Palmer’s perspective: “A quick drive out of South Austin. It’s basically just a 5K loop, but it’s great for knocking out a flat-ish and fast trail 5K/10K for training.” The 744-acre state park has a host of paved and unpaved paths for running

Robert E. Lee Road Palmer’s perspective: “Yeah, it’s not a trail, but it’s the perfect little hill for some quick ’n’ nasty hill repeats and you can quickly trot on over to Barton Springs right afterward to recover.” Diversifying your running routine with challenging hills like this one near Zilker Park is a requirement for multi-sport athletes. As any runner knows, there’s no such thing as a flat 10K. However, vehicle traffic is heavier in this area, so runners should be cautious.

TASC Active Wear Available online or at RunTex stores A full section of natural performance apparel for men and women, engineered from bamboo viscose, organic cotton and elastine. Any seasoned athlete knows the drawbacks of synthetic fabrics: They irritate the skin and cause bad odors. Worse, in Carrozza’s opinion, is that the skin absorbs all the chemicals in synthetic fabrics. “If you go back to synthetic fabrics after wearing natural fibers, your body just feels trapped,” he says. Read more about the line at

Visit for more information. 3 1

{good deeds}

a Glimmer of Hope

Local entrepreneur uses his business model to create an effective and efficient foundation. By Deborah Hamilton-Lynne


onsistently ranked among the top 10 Best Givers by Barron’s Magazine, which annually ranks philanthropic organizations throughout the world, Phillip and Donna Berber continue to save lives in Ethiopia and to improve the lives of their fellow Austinites—and they do it in a most effective and efficient way. Determined to make a difference in the lives of rural Ethiopians living in extreme poverty, the Berbers created A Glimmer of Hope in 2000. Eleven years later, they have touched more than 2.5 million lives by providing clean water, schools, health clinics and micro-financing loans. The foundation has a revolutionary approach and is run like a business. “When I researched international nonprofit organizations, the more I learned about how they were managed, the more determined I became that not one penny would be wasted in our organization,” Phillip Berber says. “I wanted to start a new model based on business models with new components and approaches.” In August 2000, the Berbers pledged $100 million in stock from the sale of Cyber Corp to create an endowment for the organization. This endowment funds the entire cost of the nonprofit’s operating expenses and allows for a unique promise to donors: One hundred percent of every dollar

austin insider For most of us, the hustle and bustle of the holiday season and the much needed recovery can last for months. The experience of hunting down the perfect expression of our feelings can leave us exhausted and frustrated, and still feeling like the perfect gift has eluded us. Fret no more. I Live Here I Give Here (ILHIGH), in partnership with the Austin

3 2   ATX MAN winter 2011

donated to A Glimmer of Hope goes directly to funding the projects. “We are the conduit from the donors to the people in need,” Berber says. “Through photos and videos, our donors personally see and experience how their contributions are making a difference. No matter how large or small the contribution, each person is engaged in helping the rural poor, and that keeps them involved.” In 2004, the foundation committed $5 million toward supporting local programs in Austin, working through what the Berbers call “the angels in the community.” Focused on East and South Austin, to date it has funded more than 100 projects that empower youth and seniors. With all operating costs covered by the endowment, 100 percent of all money raised goes directly to programs supporting at-risk youth and disadvantaged seniors. To check out the projects, visit A Glimmer of Hope’s Austin website: Of the expansion to Austin, Berber offers, “Austin has been so good to our family, it seemed natural to want to help out at home.” Whether it is at home or thousands of miles across the globe, wanting to improve the lives of others by making the most significant impact he can just seems to come naturally to Phillip Berber.


Eighty percent of all Ethiopians live in poverty. But you can make a real difference in their lives. You can start a fundraising campaign by choosing a project type from the categories of water, health, education or micro-finance, or you can choose a village where the need is greatest. Then simply set a goal, choose the type of campaign you want to run, such as a sponsored event or a holiday fundraiser, customize your page on the website, tell all of your friends and you are on your way. You can also find an existing campaign described on the website and be part of that campaign. If you simply want to make a donation, 100 percent of your gift will go directly to the project that you fund. A Glimmer of Hope Austin also encourages volunteering at the various project sites it supports, and opportunities are listed in the Get Involved section of the website. There are many opportunities to volunteer in several diverse organizations.

brett barnes on philanthropy

Community Foundation, has made holiday shopping easy and meaningful. Here’s how it works: 1.) You select a gift card design; 2.) Load the gift card with an appropriate amount; 3.) Select whether you want the card mailed, picked up or delivered; and 4.) Proceed to check out. The recipient of your gift can now bestow the gift card to any nonprofit they desire. It’s a win-win-win: You get a great gift for someone you care about; they receive a


gift that allows them to choose the beneficiary; and a local nonprofit receives some much needed support.

Dec. 10 – 11: Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center Luminations,

ILHIGH’s mission is to deepen and expand the culture of personal philanthropy by inspiring Central Texans to invest more money in our community. The organization’s main purpose is to connect people like you with the issues you care about and the nonprofits that support those issues. Learn more and get involved at

Jan. 28: Dell Children’s Gala, Feb. 10: Beyond Batten Disease Gala, Feb. 18: Deal for a Cure—Juvenile Diabetes Research, Feb. 23: KLRU’s 50th Anniversary Party,

“Watch your home or business from anywhere in the world”™

Dell Children’s Medical Center Gala Making hospitals feel like home. By Joelle Pearson


o you remember going to a hospital as a child? If you haven’t suppressed these memories, then confusion, boredom and fear may come to mind. Imagine, now, if you had access to interactive art in the waiting rooms, your room was colorful and comfortable, and all your caregivers had dedicated their lives to you. Those at Dell Children’s Medical Center don’t believe this should be a fantasy. They acknowledge that children have unique medical needs, from dosages to decorum, and have created a facility with this idea at its core. Established just four years ago, the center now serves 46 counties and has become a crucial asset to the Seton network and the entire Central Texas region. It ensures that children have access not only to specialized care, but also to talented specialists once only available in larger metropolitan areas. Outstanding services provided at the center are made possible by outstanding community support. On Saturday, Jan. 28, join Kay and Eric Moreland for the first social event of the year: Dell Children’s Medical Center Gala at the Austin

Convention Center Grand Ballroom. This event aims to raise at least $1 million for the center’s area of greatest need. The theme of this year’s gala, “The Art of Healing,” speaks to the holistic and patient-centered care that Dell Children’s Medical Center hopes to create. “Dell has made healing an art form through childcare services, art therapy, pet therapy and more,” Kay Moreland says. The grounds of Dell, too, are a healing environment, complete with meditation gardens and more than 950 pieces of original art. Money raised at the gala will help foster this environment for sick and injured children. Guests of the gala will be treated to a cocktail party at 6 p.m., followed by dinner and a program at 8 p.m. Dancing to live music and a casino lounge will be provided until midnight, and throughout the night, guests are welcome to bid on silent auction items that include getaway packages in the West Indies and Napa Valley. Step across the street to the Four Seasons for an after party that swings until 2 a.m. It’s one of Austin’s most anticipated events—effortless, elegant and benefiting the demographic most in need: our own kids.

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atx man sponsored events Capital Area Dental Foundation 2012 Gala: Mardi Gras and Casino Night A little sampling of New Orleans at the Four Seasons with gambling and cool jazz, all for a good cause. Saturday, Feb. 18, LIVESTRONG Austin Marathon Run the LIVESTRONG Austin Marathon and Half Marathon through some of Austin’s most scenic and historic areas for something bigger than the mileage: 28 million living with cancer. Sunday, Feb. 19, Lifeworks Academy Awards Gala Enjoy a lively evening of The Oscars, fabulous dinner, luscious libations and interactive entertainment in themed movie studios. Sunday, Feb. 26,

Austin Under 40 Awards Gala The 14th annual Austin Under 40 Awards will honor the best and brightest young professionals in Austin. Nominees are recognized for their professional achievements, as well as their contributions to the community. (Nominations close Jan. 16.) Friday, March 2, RISE Week: Austin RISE is a nonprofit program dedicated to inspiring and empowering entrepreneurs. Created in 2007 for and by entrepreneurs in Austin, RISE has grown into an ongoing annual program that provides free, one-of-a-kind resources and experiences to entrepreneurs worldwide. March 26-30,



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{good life} getaway

the blue lantern inn

A California getaway that has it all: golf, sportfishing, shopping, fine dining and romance.

By Deborah Hamilton-Lynne Trust me on this one, guys. This is one romantic getaway that will not only score points with your spouse or significant other, but it is also guaranteed to score big with you. What if I told you there was a spot with a Four Diamond bed and breakfast—very romantic—with fabulous views of the California coast where you could get luxurious couple’s massages in your room, have gourmet breakfasts and enjoy your complimentary wine and hors d’oeuvers on a terrace overlooking a magnificent harbor filled with sailboats? And what if I also told you that this spot happens to be located in an exceptional Southern California location known to have some of the world’s best golf courses (think Tom

3 4   ATX MAN winter 2011

Fazio and Robert Trent Jones, Jr.) with Scottish links and sweeping ocean panoramas? And what if I tempted you with amazing sportfishing? Halibut, barracuda, yellowtail, white sea bass, sand bass, calico bass, bonito, sheephead and even tuna. Are you there yet? This location also has gourmet restaurants, gorgeous beaches and whale watching, art galleries and a historic Spanish Mission nearby. But here is the icing on the cake: This location has world-class shopping! Grab a golf or fishing buddy whose wife happens to be a friend of your bride, dangle the South Coast Plaza in front of them, and you guys will have your hall pass. Ferragamo, Chanel, Hermes, Gucci, Fendi, Christian Dior, Versace, Henri Bendel, Roberto

Cavalli, Prada—these names may not mean much to you (until you get the credit card statements), but I promise they will definitely put a light in your sweetie’s eyes. When she is exhausted from all that shopping, there are more than 30 restaurants ready and willing to give her an epicurean break before she is on her way to round two. All this, just as you are reeling in the big one or rounding the 10th hole. So where would you happen to find this ideal spot for a romantic getaway that will set both of your hearts racing? The Blue Lantern Inn in Dana Point, CA. Located on a bluff overlooking the yacht harbor, the inn has 29 beautiful rooms, many with ocean-view balconies, fireplaces and jetted tubs. Listed as a top U.S. seaside inn by

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{good life} getaway what to do Beaches The area beaches are among the best in California. Salt Creek Beach and Park has a long, sandy beach and is perfect for watching the surfers. The locals call the southern entrance Salt Creek Strands Beach, and there you will find picnic tables and stairs to the beach. (Ritz Carlton Drive off Pacific Coast Hwy. 1.) Doheny State Beach is great for walks on the beach, exploring tide pools and watching surfers. And it has a five-mile bike trail. (Intersection of Del Obispo and Dana Point Harbor Drive.) Whale Watching Dana Point Harbor is renowned as the whale-watching capital of the West. The California Gray whales migrate in the winter and six charter companies in the harbor provide excursions, both public and private. Reservations are recommended. Captain Dave’s Whale Safari. Sailing The OC Sailing and Events Center can fix you up with lessons, a boat to captain on your own or a ship to take you to explore Catalina Island for the day. Sportfishing Dana Wharf Sportfishing operates several charters for sportfishing. Half-day, three-quarter day and all-day trips are available year-round. Explore California History Mission San Juan Capistrano is open daily from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. The beautiful Spanish mission was built more than 200 years ago as the seventh of 21 missions throughout California. The beautiful chapel where Fr. Serra celebrated Mass still stands. Golf Everyone recommends Monarch Beach Golf Links for its stunning views and challenging Scottish links course designed by Robert Trent Jones, Jr. Reservations are a must.

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Travel and Leisure and on Condé Nast Traveler’s Gold List, the Blue Lantern has been named the best bed and breakfast in Orange County seven years in a row. Located at the end of a cul-de-sac, the three-story inn looks like a place you might find in New England with its Cape Cod-style architecture and incredible stone fireplace, cozy living room and library. The rooms are spacious, the bedding is comfortable with luxe linens, there are bikes for exploring, special requests are a priority and the hospitality can’t be beat. Fantastic homemade cookies in the lobby any time. Fruit, wine and cheese in the afternoons, and a chocolate on your pillow before you go to sleep. What more can you ask for?

reservations fast. My suggestion is to find a couple you both enjoy traveling with and book it today! For reservations and more information, visit

where to eat Cannon’s Seafood Grill is located adjacent to the Blue Lantern Inn. The menu includes seafood and steaks, as well as salads and pasta. It has incredible ocean views and was voted the most romantic restaurant in Orange County.

There are several seasonal packages with rooms starting less than $150 per night. You can also book a “Celebration Package” upgrade for $60, which includes a bottle of chilled champagne, two commemorative flutes, chocolate truffles and breakfast in bed.

Dana Point Harbor has a ton of good restaurants located right on the marina. Try Turk’s for local flavor and an amazing fish and chips appetizer. Also recommended: The Harbor Grill for seafood and Gemmell’s for fine dining.

The innkeeper told me they host many guests from Texas, and that they all hope the inn will remain a well-kept secret, but the secret is out. With Christmas, New Year’s Eve and Valentine’s Day just around the corner, you had better make those

Jack’s Restaurant is the favorite of my friends who live in the area. Jack, the owner, is usually there and greets customers as they come in. It is casual and has an outstanding menu featuring organic salads and Turner New Zealand hormone-free, grass-fed meat, all of which will appeal to Austinites.

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Rising Passing the torch to the next generation of successful entrepreneurs.

3 8   ATX MAN winter 2011

o S ns By Steve Uhler Photos by Rudy Arocha

No doubt about it, dads and their sons can have a challenging road to navigate.

Just ask Martin Sheen. But every once in a while, the journey works out. ATX Man decided to take a look inside the relationships of three uniquely diverse and successful father-and-son duos. Each is different, but all share a common bond. All have been shaped by Austin, and all have made a lasting difference and contribution to our city and its culture. One more thing: Each stands as irrefutable proof that the child is, indeed, father of the man.

The Straits

“We had the first flood in ’81,” remembers Robert Strait, sitting behind his office desk. He’s staring at an old, faded black-and-white photo of a surreal sight: a small two-man boat floating by his old store on Lamar Boulevard atop a torrent of rushing water. “Memorial Day weekend. Lost just about everything. Rebuilt. We flooded again in ’82. My dad just went, ‘You know what? I’m outta here. You take it from here.’ So I did.” If the path to success is often paved with adversity, Strait Music Company is thrice blessed. The venerable Austin music store has endured the capricious vagaries of Texas weather, surviving not one ruinous flood, but two. The current patriarch and CEO has survived two battles with cancer, plus a pretty serious heart issue. And to top it off, days after relocating to their current flagship location at Ben White Boulevard in August 2001, the catastrophic events of 9/11 threw the economy in to a tailspin. Flood, disease, disaster—it’s a list of near-biblical calamities. All that’s missing are the locusts. But nearly 50 years on, Strait Music has more than survived in an unstable and volatile market; it’s thrived. And along the way, it’s achieved that rarest of statistics: a successful family-run business spanning three generations. Founder Dan Strait, still a firecracker at 86, opened the doors at the original location at Ninth Street and Lamar Boulevard in 1963. A former piano salesman from Houston, Dan foresaw opportunities in Austin. What he didn’t foresee was being in the midst of a flood zone. Son Robert began working for the store while still in high school, delivering instruments, receiving inventory and eventually attending the University of Texas as a finance major. He was 28 when his father handed him the reins of the business. The same year Robert officially took over the family business, his own first son, Clinton, was born. “I gave myself a raise,” jokes Robert, “so I could afford him.” Like his father, young Clint learned the ropes of the retail music business from the ground up, cleaning instruments, driving deliveries, doing various odd jobs around the store. After graduating high school, Clint attended college in Colorado before returning home 4 0   ATX MAN winter 2011

to help his dad after an unexpected family crisis. “He’s my hero,” says Clint of his father. “He’s survived cancer twice and a heart attack, and I don’t think I ever heard him complain one time. Not a single word. I get a sore throat, and it’s all hands on deck. So sometimes when I’m having a bad day, I think about my dad and it kind of makes the other things seem trivial. “His second bout with cancer happened when I was in college. When he had it the first time, I was in fifth grade. I was sort of oblivious then. They told me he was going to be OK, so I didn’t worry about it that much. It’s a whole different ball game when you get that call up in college in your 20s and you’ve had friends with parents who haven’t been so lucky. It made me wonder what life would be like without my dad. It’s a lot different at 21 than it is at 12.” Returning home to a new set of responsibilities in 2006, Clint rapidly assimilated the intricacies of the business under his father’s guidance. “I use the word ‘apprentice’ a lot because I think it’s relevant,” Clint says. “I learned the big picture of the business from my dad. We worked on advertising and marketing together. … Now he pretty much handles finances, I handle marketing.” Throughout time, the learning curve between father and son proved reciprocal. “I have a little leg up on my dad as far as technology is concerned,” Clint says. “I finally got him texting about six months ago, so that’s good.” “Yeah, I got my own email now,” Robert jokes. “He’s proud of me.” Like all fathers and sons, the pair shares marked similarities and differences. Physically, the two could almost pass for siblings, if not for the differences in hair color.

“The girls have always said my dad’s one of the best-looking old men ever,” asserts the younger Strait. “Older man,” Robert corrects him. Although neither claims to be a musician, both men are intimately familiar with the technical and aesthetic attributes of the instruments they purvey. Asked what kind of instrument his son most resembles, Robert surveys his vast inventory: “He’d probably be a really fine acoustic guitar. ’Cause they’re all different. It’s not like a massproduced electronic keyboard. Acoustics are handmade. They’re all different. They all have their own special tone, kind of like him. He’s his own man, and

“Acoustics are handmade. They’re all different. They all have their own special tone, kind of like him. He’s his own man, and you’re not going to find anybody else just like him.” -Robert strait you’re not going to find anybody else just like him.” “My dad would be a grand piano,” Clint says after consideration. “Because of the intricacies involved in making them, all the different parts from different people, all the various elements that go in to it. You’ve got the strings, you’ve got the hammers, the wood. A lot of things that all work together to make one amazing instrument.” Robert Strait “I’m more like an (left), owner, antique piano,” Robstrait music co. ert offers. His son smiles. “But good anClint strait, tique grand pianos,” marketing observes Clint with manager, instant insight, “raise in value as they get strait music co. older.”

The gilmores 4 2   ATX MAN winter 2011

jack gilmore, (right) owner, jack allen’s kitchen

bryce gilmore, owner, barley swine In the short pre-dinner lull at newly opened eatery Barley Swine on a crisp fall afternoon, owner and Chef Bryce Gilmore is quietly but deftly juggling a half dozen small rituals: sampling a new wine from a local vintner, signing off on invoices, scrutinizing deliveries and, as garnish on the platter, finalizing details for his impending wedding in a few days. Dad Jack Gilmore stands nearby, cordially greeting guests, surveying the scene. Together, the pair constitutes one of the most formidable culinary duos in Austin. The differences between the two celebrated chefs mirror their respective characteristics: dad Jack, 51, down to earth, genial, a walking, talking comfort meal served in ample, generous portions; son Bryce, 30, casually lean with an eye toward artistic balance and new concepts. Like spices in a gumbo, the two men are diverse yet complementary. “The other day Bryce and I were working together in the kitchen and I was pretty intense with my staff,” Jack says. “He said, ‘Man, you’re loud.’ I’m like, ‘I gotta be loud. I have to make sure people do their stuff.’ And then with those simple words he said, it made me think, ‘Uh, maybe I am a little too loud.’ So I toned it down. I was being Chef Ramsay.” “We have different styles in the kitchen,” Bryce adds diplomatically. As founder and longtime corporate chef at Z’Tejas, and current proprietor of Jack Allen’s Restaurant, the elder Gilmore is an authentic

superstar in the industry. Relative newcomer Bryce founded Odd Duck Farm to Trailer and the recently opened Barley Swine, just blocks from the old Odd Duck location on South Lamar Boulevard. While father’s and son’s names are often linked together in local foodie circles, their respective styles diverge appreciably. “If you mention us in the same sentence as far as restaurants are concerned, people assume they’re going to be similar. But they’re not,” Bryce reflects. “Dad’s more geared to dealing with the masses, 600 covers, lots of comfort food. … Here, it’s smaller. We do maybe 80 plates. We’re a little higher end. It’s a different dining experience.” Like his father before him, at 15, Bryce began his vocation bussing tables, invariably finding himself drawn to the kitchen.

ambitions, the elder Gilmore was not without parental misgivings: “You got to be half crazy to be a chef. You work 70, 80 hours a week on the low side. Work nights, weekends, holidays. It’s hard on a family. It takes a special person to really give up everything and put out great food.” After graduating from California Culinary Academy, Bryce honed his skills in a string of prestigious kitchens throughout the country. Returning home to Austin, he was inspired by the burgeoning trailer-food culture while also developing a growing obsession with highquality, locally produced foods. He purchased a 1980 Fleetwood Mallard trailer from eBay, spent the next three months rebuilding it, initially working alongside his father. “At some point when he was building the

“What got me in to cooking was watching my dad, the respect he got, the amount of work he put in to everything.” -bryce gilmore “His mom and I thought he was going to grow up to be an architect,” Jack recalls. “That’s what he used to do: drawings, scales, things like that. But at the end of the day, architecture’s a lot like cooking. You’re building something from scratch. So it’s kind of in the same artistic realm.” “What got me in to cooking,” Bryce interjects, “was watching my dad, the respect he got, the amount of work he put in to everything. That, combined with my drive to create things and be artistic, kind of pushed me in that direction of cooking.” “We started talking about college, you know, and culinary school,” Jack says, picking up the story. “I wanted him to make sure he knew what he was getting in to.” So the two packed their bags and embarked on the first of a series of culinary cross-country road trips, scoping out possibilities, helping build restaurants, sampling local cuisine, having adventures. “It was the most time we’d ever spent together, ever,” Bryce recalls, smiling at the memory. “My dad was working so much when I was growing up, I only saw him on weekends. But traveling together, we got a lot closer.” While supportive of his son’s evolving

trailer, his vision was totally different from mine,” Jack remembers. “After about two weeks, I said, ‘Hell, do whatever you want. You know what you’re doing.’ He built it from the ground up. Wiring, plumbing, everything.” Opened in December 2009, Odd Duck became an immediate hit with savvy Austin foodies, establishing Gilmore the younger as a local entrepreneurial force to be reckoned with. In 2011, he was honored with the Best New Chef Award from Food & Wine Magazine. “People tell me every day the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree,” Jack relates. “No, it fell real far from the tree because Bryce inspired me to get in to the whole farm movement, working with local farmers, Texas ingredients, fresh is best and all that stuff. What I learned from him was, for all the right reasons, buy from your local source farmers that work their ass off every day to put out great food. “So when people come up to me and say, ‘It’s no wonder your son is successful, because of you.’ I say, ‘No, man, he’s doing his own thing.’ This guy’s a brilliant chef. We may share a few of the same ingredients, but he’s doing it all a different way, a simpler, more artistic way, where I seem to go and complicate things.” 4 3

The merediths Everyone loves a good philanthropist. Next to being Santa Claus or the neighborhood bartender, it’s the most popular job in town. But, as is often the case with dream jobs, the reality is different from the fantasy. Just ask father-and-son business partners Tom and Will Meredith. “Some people confuse philanthropy with writing a check. Anybody can write checks if you have money,” Tom reflects, sipping an espresso in a local coffee bar near his office during a rare break. “I think we take tom meredith, a little bit more of (left), General a non-traditional approach,” Will Partner and considers. “What I co-founder, find more rewardMeritage Capital; ing is focusing on more social entreCEO, MFI Capital preneurship and finding businesses will meredith, that have a social Principal and mission, bringing a business sense to co-founder, MFI the social for-profit Real Estate LLC world.” Both men should know. Together, they help guide a triad of family-owned enterprises: MFI Management, MFI Capital and MFI Foundation, the charitable arm of the family dynasty. All share a passionate commitment to social and environmental stewardship. As the former chief financial officer for Dell (from 1992 to 2001) and co-founder of Meritage Capital, L.P., Tom is a Central Texas business icon. His charitable and humanitarian efforts have earned him countless honors and accolades, enough to make Albert Schweitzer blanch, including the Austin Community Foundation Philanthropy Award in 2010, the Torch of Liberty Award in 2006 and Outstanding Philanthropist of the Year from the Association of Professional Fundraisers in 2004. All in all, it’s a hard act for a son to follow. But Will seems to be catching up. In addition to his ongoing duties at MFI, he serves on the board of directors for Open Door Preschool, the Austin Film Society and The Sustainable Food Center. He can rattle off a dizzying list of projects he’s actively involved with:

4 4   ATX MAN winter 2011

the hike and bike trail in MLK Jr. Park, a social profit village, Theatre Action Project, a community pavilion space. On top of all that, he still attends night classes twice a week. “Will has come in to his own in the last few years,” Tom says. “He’s done some really great things, and he’s only 30.” As a boy, Will took his father’s ethics and values to heart: “I saw his passion and drive. My dad grew up lower-middle class in South Philadelphia, paid his own way through college, went to law school, got his business degree at Stanford. He taught me you’ve got to work hard but work smart. You’ve got to figure out what you’re passionate about.” While attending the University of California, Santa Barbara, Will discovered an affinity for politics. After graduating, he served political internships in Washington, D.C., and across the country, shaping both his philosophy and ambition. “The notion of working for the greater good of the people around you really struck a chord with me,” he says. Returning home in 2005 to help with the family business, Will created a niche for himself by focusing on real estate development. “The thing that really drew me to real estate was the ability to create a lasting difference,” he says with the same familial fervor apparent in his father’s voice. “We’re a product of our built environment. The buildings, the infrastructure, the roads—all this stuff shapes our society as much as we shape it. Winston Churchill once said, ‘We shape our buildings. Thereafter, they shape us.’ … Austin’s growing, no matter what. We might as well find ways to grow around the things that we care about.” Back in 2001, the Meredith family purchased 30 acres in the then-derelict Chestnut neighborhood on Austin’s East side to give back to the community. After returning to Austin, the project became Will’s first big assignment for his family’s business. “We basically sat down with the community leaders and said, ‘How can we work to advocate for some of these neighborhood objectives: affordable housing, public transportation, safe public places, direct services, open green space?’ Piece by piece we started picking through the objectives that the neighborhood had laid out as their priorities,” Will says. It’s an appealingly utopian/capitalist vision, but does the Merediths’ methodology work in practice?

Take a stroll by the MLK MetroRail Station, ask nearby residents who Will Meredith is, and you’re likely to be met with a blank stare. But ask what they like about the revitalized community, and the answers come easily: the inviting Chestnut Commons, the proximity to MetroRail, the ongoing restoration of Boggy Creek Trail—all contributions manifested by the Merediths. As of this writing, the project is nearing the end of phase three of an ambitious multi-year, 15-part plan. It’s an impressive achievement for any man. But the entire Meredith family, from mom Lynn to all four children, is passionate about social change and civic responsibility. The connections—and differences—between generations have not escaped the patriarch’s notice. “I believe our children define success significantly differently than previous generations,” Tom muses. “I’ve thought a lot about this. Why? Why is it that when I talk to my kids’ friends about what they’re doing, they’re talking about teaching, the Peace Corps, EMS, the military. A lot of it is public service. And I’m thinking, why? Part of it is because their parents, unlike my parents, didn’t go to bed hungry at night, didn’t have The Depression, didn’t leave a restaurant, because they weren’t in restaurants. “Our kids have had the ability to think about life and about what it really means, because in many respects, they didn’t worry about having enough food, having enough water. But now they’re looking around saying, ‘There are people in the world worried about that stuff, and I need to figure out how to help them.’ I revel in the fact that these kids are passionate about public service. … Forget money; give time. You can have enough money. You can never have enough time.” -will meredith

“My dad taught me you’ve got to work hard but work smart. You’ve got to figure out what you’re passionate about.”

esents Austin man pr *********

State of the Arts *********

tin’s arts Steering Aus est hrough the b t s n io at iz n a org t of times. and the wors l william russel s *** photos by By John T. Davi

Jamie grant, executive director and ceo of the Long Center

4 6   ATX MAN winter 2011


t was the best of times, it was the worst of times … Whoops, scratch that. From certain perspectives, it’s looking more like the dead-solid worst of times where the Austin arts community is concerned. Consider these dire developments: The Austin Lyric Opera is performing triage to try to keep the company solvent, even to the point of putting its beautiful custom-built headquarters on the market. The Austin American-Statesman reported that operational budgets for 11 major local arts organizations rose 63 percent since 2000 as they struggle to grow and serve a growing population. At the same time, noted the paper, although the population rose by almost 134,000 between 2000 and 2009, median household income in the same period did not increase, leaving less disposable income to spend on the arts. And to really top off the day, we are most likely barreling down Rerun Highway toward another recession. This sucks. On the other hand, the city has been gifted with two new, spectacular performance spaces in the past few years: the new ACL Live at Moody Theater and The Long Center for the Performing Arts venue. Ballet Austin, which opened its own new venue, the Butler Dance Education Center, reported record ticket sales of almost $2 million for the 2010-2011 season. And KLRU’s locally produced Arts In Context series continues to spotlight Austin’s diverse arts communities from the established to the esoteric. Change is also in the air with the recent announcement of the merger of the Austin Museum of Art and Arthouse at the Jones Center forming a new entity with an operating budget of $3.2 million and zero debt—a move that will save the two organizations more than $1 million in operational costs in the first year alone. The new entity will also own outright two architecturally significant properties: AMOA’s historic Driskoll Villa with its 12-acre lakeside Laguna Gloria site and the Arthouse space located at 700 Congress Ave., designed by renowned architectural firm Tsurumaki Lewis. Of the merger, Stephen Jones, a member of the newly formed board of trustees, says, “It all adds up to a very bright future for the visual arts in Austin.” So, are things trending up or down? If the city is faring relatively well in hard times, does that mean arts groups can be complacent? Does a new and more austere climate call for new tactics? What, in the end, do the arts mean for Austin?

Jim ritts, executive director of the paramount

“2011 hit, and the rules changed,” says Cliff Redd, who, before he became executive director of development for the University of Texas’ massive College of Natural Sciences, was the executive director and chief fundraiser for The Long Center. “The new rule is survival counts. The lesson for arts groups is to stay heads-up and very clear about what their programming needs to be.” The new rules are a central preoccupation of three men who run three of the city’s most visible performance spaces: Jim Ritts, the new executive director of the Paramount and State Theatres; Dave Steakley, the 20-year veteran producing artistic director of Zachary Scott Theatre Center; and Jamie Grant, the newly arrived executive director and CEO of The Long Center. Grant is the new guy in town, having taken up his reins just two weeks before speaking with me for this story in late September. “I preface everything I say by noting that I’ve been here five minutes,” he says, not exaggerating by much. But his are fresh eyes, and it is interesting to get his take on his newly adopted city. A Canada native and veteran arts manager with almost three decades of experience, Grant was aware of Austin from afar. “I came from Kichener, Ontario, a high-tech center in Canada. They were constantly trying to recruit and retain the best workers in the world. And

they would run up against a number of American cities. And they would lose out to cities like Austin,” Grant says. “So, even as an outsider, long before I knew there was an opportunity here, I was very aware of some of the investments that have been made in Austin in the arts, culture and creativity.” Grant loves the fact that his new venue not only hosts the ballet, symphony and opera, but also a barbecue festival (“Barbecue, particularly in this neck of the woods, is very artistic,” he notes.) and a food-trailer exhibition. He loves to run his hands across the divots left by hailstone in the old Palmer Auditorium’s repurposed roof panels that now make up The Long Center’s walls. And he loves that his five kids all have their own reasons to want to visit Mom and Dad in their new digs. 4 7

to the n i k l a ing you w e walk r ’ “When u o y ount, tive Param umula c e h t o’s in with everyone wh a of r seen o d souls e m erfor ” ever p there. e c n a m perfor s

Jim ritt

“There are so many different Austins,” he enthuses. “One of my sons is a track star at his university, and for him Austin is all about the Texas Relays at U.T. My youngest, her Austin is all about being able to swim in March. My stepdaughter has heard all about Saturday night on Sixth Street, so she can’t wait to experience that.” Grant, who opened three performing arts venues prior to this assignment, believes a healthy local economy and a healthy arts scene go hand in hand. “People understand that if you want a prosperous and vibrant community, that includes the arts. I can tell you that those communities that invested in the infrastructure of the arts are best positioned to recruit and retain the finest minds,” he says. “My vision for The Long Center is a place that’s busy in every corner and there’s something happening every day.” Across the river, Jim Ritts sits in his office, which was once the projection room of the venerable State Theatre, open again after a disastrous flood a few years ago. He talks about his responsibility of guiding Austin’s cultural grande dame, the Paramount Theatre, and the newly restored State Theatre through a new century. “I’ve been here 100 days at this point,” he said in late September. “If you look at my background”— including a globe-spanning tenure with ABC Sports—“my skill set is as a CEO, as an entrepreneur, as a marketing person. I’ve always been about deriving value out of content, and I have an incredible respect for content. I want to enable others who have those unique talents that I revere to have an environment to flourish.” Ritts originally hails from Dallas, but he worked his way through U.T. bundling stats for Frank Gifford and Keith Jackson for ABC’s football broadcasts. He was away a long time, and when he and his wife returned to Austin in 2006, they plunged in to supporting the Paramount. When the chance came to succeed the inestimable Ken Stein as executive director, Ritts took a long, hard look at what he was inheriting. “First thing, this is the most soulful center of art in the entire city,” Ritts says. “When you walk into the Paramount, you’re walking in with the cumulative souls of everyone who’s ever performed

4 8   ATX MAN winter 2011

or seen a performance there. This is Austin’s original creative home. Second, it is acoustically the best space in town. Third, I give tremendous credit to Ken and his team. I’ve never found an arts organization that took better care of their patrons.” Though he laments the alleged drug dealers who currently hang out at the bus stop downstairs, Ritts sees his two theaters as the anchors for one of the most culturally charged blocks in the city. “We have 220 performance nights a year at the Paramount,” he says. “I want to have that many at the State too. Then you have Arthouse right across the street and the potential of a new Lake/Flato-designed boutique hotel on the corner. This block could become one of the core centers of arts and visual culture in the city.” Ritts also avidly eyes the new population of young upwardly mobiles and empty-nesters beginning to fill up the condo towers downtown. “You’ve just got to remind them that we’re only a five-block walk away,” he says. “The walking experience of living downtown and going out for an evening is one of the great benefits of urban life, and we’re very well-poised to take advantage of that.” Beyond that, he says: “This is an arts community and a city that’s in a state of flux. … We’ve got to figure out how to connect South Congress with downtown—you just have to. Otherwise, you have two disconnected urban pods, and you’re putting people back in cars.” In the meantime, Ritts is rooting for his peers. It’s not a zero-sum game for him; they are all charged with the same obligation, he says. “It is all of our responsibility that, when you

come into the Paramount or The Long Center or ACL Live or Zach, you may not happen to love the show you saw that night, but it better be high-end professional,” Ritts says. “You should never walk out questioning the professionalism of what went on. And as long as we live up to that. … Hey, none of us are impervious to what happens in this economy. What it means is, we can have fewer mistakes.” Perhaps no one in the city’s arts community has made fewer mistakes than Zach’s Dave Steakley. He has seemingly perfected the art of combining house-filling, crowd-pleasing fare like Santaland Diaries and Beehive with edgier, forward-leaning productions that speak to issues before the community. (“I believe that Dave is quite brilliant at understanding his audience, brilliant at

dave steakley, producing artistic director of the zachary scott theatre

programming to them and brilliant at keeping his theater full,” Redd says. “That’s a rare gift.”) Zach is entering a triumphant new period. A stone’s throw away from Steakley’s office behind the Whisenhunt Stage, the walls are going up on the Topfer Theatre, the third installment of Zach’s decades-long master plan. It represents the triumph of Steakley’s 20-year tenure. “Every city has a great producing theater,” Steakley asserts. “Dallas has the Dallas Theater Center and Houston has the Alley Theatre. That’s the regional void that Zach is filling. … Austin gets a lot of hype nationally. What’s important to me is how do we meet the challenge of growing, maturing our city and our arts community? How do we hold on to our soul?”

To Steakley, the answer lay in programming to the community. “The key for me has been to align the identity of the theater as closely as possible to Austin,” he says. “You can’t pluck us up and set us down in Provincetown or La Jolla. We have to have work that has Austin artists and is speaking to Austinites about things that are important to us.” Steakley has been frequenting Zach’s corridors since he was a Plan Two undergrad at U.T. studying journalism and theater. One of his most memorable early experiences at the theater was watching a production of Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean, featuring a young actress named Barbara Chisholm. Now, these decades later, Chisholm is back onstage under Steakley’s roof, so to speak,

having starred in the recent Red-Hot Patriot: The KickAss Wit of Molly Ivins. Steakley shakes his head at the passage of time. Could he ever envision an Austin without Zach Scott Theatre, which was, after all, incorporated way back in 1932? No, he says, adding, “That comes with an added responsibility: to always be reflective and responsive to our city and to sometimes lead that conversation. … The idea of community has to be inclusive. It’s not just a certain kind of people. We always have to expand the compassionate parts of our hearts and minds when we talk about who is community. How expansive can we be in terms of everybody that we’ll include at the table of conversation?” The job of the arts, contends Steakley, in good times and bad, is to build that great community. 4 9

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Preventing the Top Threats to Men’s Health

Heart Disease and Stroke

The top five conditions and how to reduce your risk. By Jill Case Although it’s true that men have a shorter lifespan than women, the good news for men is that it is possible to live longer, healthier lives by taking steps to prevent the top five causes of death for males in this country. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the five leading causes are heart disease, cancer, chronic lower respiratory disease, diabetes and stroke.*

Super-Steps to Prevent Multiple Threats There are certain steps men can take that will help reduce the risks of all five health threats. Men may have heard these things many times, but knowing that making these lifestyle changes can prevent the leading causes of death makes them worth a second look.

Stop Smoking Smoking or using other tobacco products is a risk factor for all five threats, including diabetes (according to the American Diabetes Association, there

have been studies showing that people who smoke are more likely to get Type 2 diabetes, and people who already have the disease have a higher risk of death). You should also avoid second-hand smoke whenever possible. There are many tools available to help with the difficult process of quitting, including a program offered by the American Lung Association: Freedom from Smoking.

Eat Right Not surprisingly, a healthy diet

is important in combating every threat listed. In every case, eating more fruits and vegetables, more lean protein, fewer fats and less sodium, will improve your chances against disease. It is easier than ever to make changes to your diet because supermarket foods are clearly labeled with

nutritional information. In addition, many restaurant websites provide detailed nutritional information on their menu items. Physicians and researchers also recommend limiting alcohol as a way to prevent heart disease and stroke, as well as cancer.

Exercise Keeping fit isn’t as time-

consuming or difficult as it sounds. The American Heart Association recommends getting at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise (for example, brisk walking) at least five times a week. Many studies have shown that you can exercise in 10-minute increments to equal 30 minutes a day and get the same benefits, so “not having time” is not a good excuse.

Lung Cancer and Chronic Lower Respiratory Disease Quit smoking or don’t start. Not smoking is the best way to prevent lung diseases like cancer and COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease— emphysema and chronic bronchitis are the two primary conditions that constitute COPD), along with avoiding second-hand smoke. Avoid exposure to radon. Have your home tested by a reputable testing service and treat for radon if it is found. Avoid exposure to chemicals, air pollution, and dust and exhaust fumes. Avoid exposure in the workplace to things such as asbestos, uranium and arsenic. Heed air quality warnings when they are issued.

5 4   ATX MAN winter 2011

Heart disease is the No. 1 threat to men’s health, and strokes are the No. 1 cause of adult disability.¹ The American Heart Association, citing research findings from a study in Circulation: Heart Failure, an AHA journal, states that the risk for heart failure decreases with each healthy behavior that a person adopts, including not smoking, good diet and exercise. The American Heart Association also recommends maintaining healthy blood pressure. High blood pressure is the No. 1 risk factor for heart disease. If your blood pressure is at or above 120/80, you need to take steps to reduce it. The super-steps listed to the left are all important, along with managing and reducing stress levels. Maintain a healthy blood sugar level. Get your blood sugar checked to see if it is in the healthy range (a fasting blood sugar level should be below 100). When diabetes is added to other risk factors (such as high blood pressure or obesity), there is a higher chance for heart disease and strokes.



Men can become afflicted with every type of cancer, but according to the American Cancer Society, the top four cancers that affect men are prostate, colon, lung and skin cancer. The super-steps listed to the left will help, as will the suggestions below:

Diabetes is on the rise in America, and according to the American Diabetes Association, there are now 25.8 million people in the United States living with diabetes (8.3 percent of the population). Type 2 adult onset diabetes can be prevented in some but not all cases with the basic lifestyle changes discussed earlier: a healthier diet, exercise and maintaining a health weight. Diabetes can cause many complications, including nerve damage and vision problems, and it contributes to heart disease, so making those lifestyle changes is well worth the effort.

Prostate cancer The Prostate Cancer Foundation suggests that men should avoid supplementing their diet with too much calcium—try to keep it to 1,500 milligrams of calcium per day. Also, avoid over-supplementing your diet with too much folate. Most men should begin talking to their doctors at age 50 about testing for prostrate cancer (men with risk factors should begin the discussion by age 45).

Skin cancer According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, “about 90 percent of melanoma skin cancers are associated with exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun.”² This points out the importance of always using a broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher. In addition, it is best to avoid the sun as much as possible between the hours of 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. An annual skin examination is also highly recommended.

Colon cancer According to the Colon Cancer Alliance website, more than “80 percent of all cases of colorectal cancer can be prevented with the recommended screening.” Men older than 50 should discuss screening tests with their doctors. The Colon Cancer Alliance says regular screening can include a colonoscopy and a fecal occult blood test (FOBT). An increase in the number of men receiving these screening tests could save as many as 30,000 lives each year.

Nothing can prevent all disease, but it seems clear that experts believe men can affect their health by making a few positive lifestyle changes. If it seems too overwhelming, try one change at a time. Your family and friends will thank you for it.

*The third leading cause of death is listed in the CDC study as “unintentional injuries,” but this article deals with the five preventable leading conditions and conditioans that cause death in males. 1 2 Pleasance ED, Cheetham RK, Stephens PJ, et al. A comprehensive catalogue of somatic mutations from a human cancer genome. Nature; 2009; 463:191-196. Resources: American Heart Association; American Cancer Society; Colon Cancer Alliance; The Skin Cancer Foundation; American Diabetes Association

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0 Keeping a solid base with your body and core allows you to counterbalance your partner.

Training for Dancing With the Stars Dance begins with the core. By Ryan Nail


hen they think of dancing, most people think of weddings where people shake their hips and point their index fingers in the air to Twist and Shout. Or they think of the well-known Texas two-step made famous in Urban Cowboy. So when I was asked to be part of Dancing with the Stars – Austin, I was a little bit skeptical. But when I learned the event is the third-biggest fundraiser in Texas benefiting the Center for Child Protection, I was in.

5 6   ATX MAN winter 2011

As I started to learn to dance with my professional dance partner, Lindsey LeBlanc, I quickly realized I was using my core and body strength way more than I thought I was going to be. I learned that every dance movement initially comes from your core; core is where dance truly begins. Core is used in several dynamic ways when you dance. For example, you use your core to stabilize your abs while sustaining your partner in most positions.

And not only must you engage your core, but you have to have fluidity with it as you move and lift your partner from one position to the next, making using your core an art, and bringing dance to a whole new level. Along with using your core and strength, the most important part of dancing is flexibility. Flexibility allows you to use your core more efficiently and prevents injury. I believe that

flexibility really is the fountain of youth. In dance, a sit-up to one person is equivalent to a contraction of a movement that creates an art form. To do all of these movements and core work while trying to look like you know what you are doing is pretty difficult. Along with learning all of this, I also have learned four very important life lessons throughout this process of learning how to dance with a partner. The first lesson is: Life is a dance, so slow down and take your time. The second is: Give your partner space to do their own dance. Thirdly, your partner is there to make you look good. Finally, the most important life lesson is that mistakes are always the fault of the male lead. (This lesson can also transfer to other important relationships.) On Dec. 4, come see what I learned when I take the floor at Dancing with the Stars – Austin at the Hilton Downtown Austin. Core fitness, strength, agility and flexibility may just rule the evening and take home the prize!

[ Use core in a flowing motion.

[ Set up core stance.

As I started to learn to dance with my professional dance partner, Lindsey LeBlanc, I quickly realized I was using my core and body strength way more than I thought I was going to be. I learned that every dance movement initially comes from your core; core is where dance truly begins.

] When keeping your shoulders back and squeezing your abs, you can control forces that are away from your body.

] Using pure strength and upright core posture allows you to double your strength from major muscle groups.

RYAN NAIL Owner, CoreFit Training 5 7

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family man

Happy Holidays Gifts I would love for my children to be thankful for in 2012. By Clay Nichols I’m supposed to be writing about the holidays, but those little buggers are packed so tight, I can’t wedge a tweet between them. Like many dads, I’m too overwhelmed to think about any individual holiday in depth. Besides, this magazine is published quarterly, so I’ve decided to multi-task Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Thanksgiving and New Year’s all at once under the title above. Topping the list of gifts I would love for my children to be thankful for in 2012:

Soccer practice.

I hope my kids appreciate that I have allowed myself to become club soccer’s bitch. Soccer tells me what to do with my weekends. Soccer tells me where to go, where to sit, what to say and what to do with my paycheck. So no complaining about going to practice. Instead, I want nothing but gratitude for the fact that the only balls dad has left are black and white checkered.


My father wore shined shoes and crisply creased slacks to work, poor bastard. After almost two decades of plying my trade in Austin, the last several years in blissful self-employment, I now work in the full nude most of the time (yes, now). Shoes, meh. Flip-flops serve and will soon have their own division in the Capitol 10K. It’s a thong-toed legacy I’ve passed to my children, who have rarely been out of sight of their own feet, the happy little hobbits, and they should thank me for it.


Unless I get a ream of thank you notes pronto, I’m shutting down the Top Gear

5 8   ATX MAN winter 2011

marathon that has my teen referring to his “maths” as “rubbish” and prompting my 7-year-old to ask hard questions about the 0-to-60 time of our family minivan. English car shows, Japanese cooking competitions, and Zach and Cody flow endlessly from the HD horn of plenty, unimpeded by pesky parental supervision. Where’s the love?

Breakfast tacos.

My children have never lived in a world where breakfast tacos did not exist. I have often told them of a far-off land where there are no delicious bacon, bean and cheese breakfast tacos, but they do not believe me. They just snuggle into their corner booth at Texas Honey Ham and say, “Tell us of Scranton again, Pa-pa,” and giggle.


Up and down the line, spirits are high as buckets pass hand to hand from the washing machine down the hall to the bathtub. In the lulls between rinse cycles, we swap stories or play a hand of cribbage before the signal goes up and we stand to our stations once more. Ever since the washing machine belched gray water all across the kitchen floor, signaling the collapse of the plumbing in portions of the house, our bucket brigade has been a curriculum in the real cost, in terms of increasingly scarce resources, of clean unmentionables. The boom times are here again; an environment unmatched in rich opportunities, and the wise will seize this once-in-a-lifetime circumstance. We are experiencing a full on, raging bull market. Some might even say a bubble. Times may be tough, but opportunities abound to teach our kids the true meaning of gratitude.

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sports Brought to you by

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Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports Networks' Inside College Basketball Previews the 2011-2012 Season.

College Basketball Could Return Powerhouses in 2011-2012 By Jon Rothstein

Athletic directors from mid-major schools throughout the country want to know when their turn is coming. How could their school be the next VCU or Butler? If Shaka Smart and Brad Stevens could do the unthinkable and lead their respective teams to a Final Four, why couldn’t a school like Creighton or Iona do the same? That was the perception to some during this past offseason in college basketball. The reality is a completely different story. With marquee players like Jared Sullinger (Ohio State), Harrison Barnes (North Carolina) and Terrence Jones (Kentucky) all opting to return to school rather than enter the NBA draft, the chance for another VCU or Butler seems unlikely. Many believe the 2011-2012 college basketball season could mirror the 2008 Final Four, when four No. 1 seeds filled the Alamodome in San Antonio with a weekend of bliss in early April. North Carolina, Kentucky, Ohio State, UCONN and Syracuse all seem to be primed to have a chance to be the elite core of teams throughout the country. But behind those five is a plethora of squads that all figure to provide one intriguing storyline after another, all season long. Kevin Stallings returns virtually every piece that matters at Vanderbilt and adds a quality freshman point guard in Kedren Johnson. The

6 0   ATX MAN winter 2011

Commodores will be without starting big man Festus Ezeli for the start of the season due to a sprained knee, but they should be ready to roll in March. Jamie Dixon has two veteran guards in place at Pitt with Travon Woodall and Ashton Gibbs, and could have maybe his deepest frontcourt ever, highlighted by high-flying freshman Khem Birch. Florida lost three starters, but Billy Donovan has more guards than a state penitentiary. Look for people to start mentioning Gators freshman wing Bradley Beal as one of the best first-year players in the country by January. Many Big East pundits say Louisville is another team that could break the top 10 and be a Final Four contender, but don’t forget about Cincinnati. The Bearcats have their top four scorers back from last year’s team that won a game in the NCA A Tournament, and add a major piece in JUCO big man Cheikh Mbodji. This season will be about the blue bloods. Cinderella will still have an invitation to the ball, but the guess here is that her curfew will be a little earlier next March. Anything different in March will be sheer madness. Sounds like the norm, right?


It’s been quite some time since college basketball saw a point guard with as much electricity as Longhorns freshman Myck Kabongo. Dynamic with the ball and fearless in between the ears, the ultra quick Kabongo will have to be nearly flawless if Texas is to keep up the type of production they’ve enjoyed in Big 12 play in recent years.


He was seen as a spark plug off the bench last season and now, the role for J’Covan Brown figures to be drastically augmented. With the departures of Cory Joseph, Jordan Hamilton and Tristan Thompson, Brown is now viewed as Texas’ main offensive option. The million-dollar question is whether the combo guard will trust his teammates enough to make plays in a big spot. If the Longhorns’ last play in their NCA A Tournament loss against Arizona is any indication, the answer is: not yet. 

3. WANGMENE’S TURN For years, Alexis Wangmene has played behind more talented big men in Austin, but now his teammates need him to play major minutes. With Thompson and Gary Johnson gone, the experienced Wangmene is the Longhorns’ most experienced interior player and one Texas will need to lean on in conference play.  4. NEW KIDS ON THE BLOCK

Rick Barnes has done as good a job as anyone

FIVE FAVORITES 1. NORTH CAROLINA The Skinny: The Tarheels will reach college basketball’s zenith just like in 2005 and 2009 if freshman forward James Michael-McAdoo becomes the next Marvin Williams. 2. KENTUCKY The Skinny: Anthony Davis might be John Calipari’s most talented freshman ever. Seriously. 3. UCONN The Skinny: Jim Calhoun’s ability to play both big and small gives him a tremendous chance to win a fourth national title. 4. OHIO STATE The Skinny: Jared Sullinger is down 25 pounds, but who replaces Jon Diebler’s outside shooting?  5. SYRACUSE The Skinny: This could be Jim Boeheim’s deepest team ever. Look for a breakout year from junior guard Brandon Triche.

in college basketball at annually replenishing talent, but this Texas team has a different look. With a plethora of unknowns and unproven commodities, it’s hard to predict what this team will look like in February and March when most don’t have a feel for them in October. Not to worry; if this talented freshman class can grow during a period of time, the Longhorns should shortly return to their place as a perennial national power. 

Where the

Patient Priority! is the


With question marks lurking on the baseline, the one freshman other than Kabongo who figures to have a major impact is power forward Jonathan Holmes. Although slightly undersized at 6 feet 7 inches, Holmes is an underrated scorer and could push for a starting job immediately.

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Santa baby, slip a sable under the tree, for me I’ve been an awful good girl Santa baby, and hurry down the chimney tonight Think of all the fun I’ve missed Think of all the fellas that I haven’t kissed Next year I could be oh so good If you’d check off my Christmas list, Boo doo bee doo Santa Baby, written by J. Javits and P. Springer, originally sung by Ertha Kitt

Making a List and Checking it Twice

Sage advice for beleaguered men overwhelmed with non-stop holiday cheer.

6 2   ATX MAN winter 2011

By Michelle Valles Photo by Rudy Arocha


ook at me sitting pretty over there waiting for Santa to notice me. I know what you’re thinking. Yes, those puppies are

real. Too bad I can barely walk in them. Still, they’re one of the hottest pairs around. So identifiable, even blindfolded fashionistas can pull out a pair of Christian Louboutin pumps just by stroking that signature red lacquer sole. Get her those CLs for Christmas, Hanukkah or Valentine’s Day, and guaranteed you’ll have your Carrie Bradshaw type of woman walking

back to you after any fight. (Warning: Your Eleven, exactly. One louder.” (Oh, don’t tell me me.” The fishy eventually died and so did we. That’s not the point! The point is, as much as I you know Spinal Tap but not your woman. Shame results may vary.) I can read the gift card now: hate clichés, here it goes: It’s the thought that on you, blokes!) “Doll, we make a great pair. Let’s walk every step Women love it when some of life’s pleasures counts. (Saying that made me cringe a little too. of the way together. XOXO.” But it’s true.) If you can’t afford to get her happen unexpectedly. Mainly because in our Every woman loves extravagant gifts from diamonds, don’t lose your sparkle. Just use your perfect, pretty, crazy little heads, we like to think time to time (as long as the cash for those gifts is not coming out of the same bank account). But, you know our deepest desires or still have an imagination and head, for once. (Down boy. Not that one; your brain.) element of surprise left in your reserves. Besides, OK, the shoe idea stinks! Have any better idea, What she wants is pretty simple: Don’t be knowing what you’re getting for Christmas is wise guy? Let’s hope so. Frankly, I really feel for about as spontaneous as a Whiskey River encore at drunk or high again in front of her family; go you guys. These next three months have got to be golfing or skiing after you help her with the kids. a Willie concert. grueling on your craniums. Better yet, take the darling rug rats with you But hey, sport, at least you signed up to play, First, you’ve got to get through the holiday while she prepares the home for company, runs unlike those fearful free agents roaming dirty season pretending to be thrilled about going to her errands or calls her friend to gripe about you. Sixth, choosing to fly solo weeks before her parents’ house again. (Don’t bitch; it’s not Most romantic hopefuls would take an like you came up with a better plan.) Not to Christmas and not going back out on the prowl unexpected, sweet kiss underneath the mistletoe until after Valentine’s Day. How’s that working mention that her over-achieving brother-in-law with an Otis Redding vinyl spinning in the who just made partner will be joining in the for you cheapskates? Don’t just sample the background over most things. Unforgettable goodies; join the club already! Don’t you know festivities too. Oh great, don’t you just love moments are priceless and so are thoughtful misery loves company? hearing about his successful investments and gifts. One woman told me the puppy her hubby Did you guys ever think how stressful the how his hoity-toity fundraisers kick-started his got her one Christmas was the best gift ever. He holidays are on us? Like when our girlfriends latest nonprofit, and that now he’s taking pilot thought the furry companion would help ease the and sisters call us up on Dec. 26, squealing, lessons because his wife always wanted to see the heartache she endured after the passing of her Amazon rainforest from 10,000 feet above “Soooo? What did he get you?” And we’re left stumbling and babbling like Rick Perry at a dad. Smooth move. ground? Most busy moms I know would love a week, Considering this, maybe telling your wife Republican presidential debate, trying to explain day, even an hour uninterrupted as a gift. Also, how the flat-screen, exercise bike or new couch how your new boss really hates you and wants to you can’t go wrong with funny little presents. For really were the gifts we wanted this year. Nothing annihilate your position should wait until after instance, if you’re dating a cute, cat-loving chic, like the practical couple’s combo gift. And, of the holidays. a framed picture of you holding her kitty would course the towels you got us were really, um… But wait. Bang! Happy new year! Didn’t you be a great stuffing stocker. We won’t tell her you promise her something fancy? Or worse: nice? really wish Fluffy had dancing? Hoping the Mayans already used up his nine were right about 2012, huh? lives. You get my drift. Well, it won’t come soon Bottom line: If you’re an enough because—pow, Did you guys ever think how stressful the holidays are on us? honest, devoted, loving suckers—in slides family man, husband or Valentine’s Day, your favorite Like when our girlfriends and sisters call us up on Dec. 26, boyfriend all year round, romantic holiday. What’s those actions usually that, you say? Cupid hit you squealing, “Soooo? What did he get you?” And we’re left outweigh whatever you get us in the pocketbook? on some commercialized Hang in there, laddies. By stumbling and babbling like Rick Perry at a Republican man-made holiday. Just be the time St. Patrick’s Day engaged with us and the rolls around, you’ll be presidential debate, trying to explain how the flat-screen, family during these special chugging down a pint of moments, sort of like the Guinness, celebrating a exercise bike or new couch really were the gifts we wanted first time you laid eyes on us holiday you don’t know too and would do anything to be much about just to feel like this year. ours. Remember? Of course your normal self. you do. Come on, it can’t be that You have to trust me on bad. It’s not like you asked this. Never, I mean never her, “So, what do you want listen to a woman who says she doesn’t want A little creativity goes a long way and you for Christmas, babe?” Of course you didn’t. anything. She only said that because you asked better have it if you’re low on funds, fellows. One That’s like asking your wife on Valentine’s Day, “Hey you, wanna have sex tonight?” Uh, not year when I was a broke TV reporter, it only took her, “So, what do you want for Christmas, babe?” Even if it is simple, a thoughtful gift is always $15 bucks to melt an old flame’s heart. I bought a anymore, Mr. Romantico. Your lame appropriate. Something that says, “I know you beta fish, fish bowl and some food, put the bowl predictability instantly drops the libido meter in and I love you.” And you’re in. somewhere he’d eventually see it and attached a to the negative black zone when you’d prefer to Happy holidays to you and yours! note that read, “You’re the only fish in the sea for have us in the red, turned up to 11. Correct? “Yes. 6 3


End-of-the-Year Investing

>> Taking a little time out from the holiday chores to make some strategic saving and investing decisions before Dec. 31 can affect not only your long-term ability to meet your financial goals, but also the amount of taxes you’ll owe in April.

Planning ahead means savings on April 15th.

If you own a stock, fund or ETF and decide to unload some shares, you may be able to maximize your tax advantage. For a mutual fund, the most common way to calculate cost basis is to use the average cost per share. Though, you can also request that specific shares be sold, for example, those bought at a certain price. Which shares you choose depends on if you want to book capital losses to offset gains or keep gains low to reduce the tax bite. (This only applies to shares held in a taxable account.) Be aware that you must use the same method when you sell the remaining shares.

James w. Hamilton, III is a financial advisor in the private wealth management division at Morgan Keegan. In this capacity, 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

winners losers *Data from Open of Business on 8/01/2011 to close 10/31/2011

price on 8.1.11



price on 10.31.11 (gain) price on 10.31.11 (loss)





















ticker name open close %Change (SWI) Solarwinds Inc.......................................................21.72........28.86.............7.14 (SLAB) Silicon Laboratories..........................................35.89........42.75............6.86 (WFM) Whole Foods Market ........................................ 67.44......... 72.12.............4.68 (BEXP) Brigham Exploration Company.................32.89........36.42............3.53 (MGAM ) Multimedia Games Holding Company.....4.39..........6.61..............2.22 (LMNX) Luminex Corp............................................................20.62........ 21.96.............1.34 (ACC) American Campus Communities ................37.63........38.93............. 1.3 (TIN) Temple Inland Inc.................................................30.63........31.81............ 1.18 (CIA) Citizens Inc..................................................................6.96.......... 7.84................88 (CRUS) Cirrus Logic...............................................................15.77........16.64............. .87 (NATI) National Instruments Corp. ........................26.06........26.71..............65 (VLNC) Valence Technology...........................................1.24.......... .959............. -.281 (GOLF) Golfsmith International Holdings.........4.07..........3.52..............-.55 (DELL) Dell .................................................................................16.37........15.81.............-.56 (CNVO) Convio Inc. ................................................................10.23......... 9.59...............-.64 (ACPW) Active Power.............................................................. 1.75.......... .9115........... -.7885 (PVSW) Pervasive Software ................................................. 7.46........... 6.11..............-1.35 (NTSP) Netspend Holdings............................................... 7.92...........5.75.............-2.17 (FOR) Forestar Group .....................................................16.56........13.00........... -3.56 (EZPW) EZCORP............................................................................33.93........ 27.78.............-6.15

Be Selective About Selling

If you’re selling to harvest losses in a stock or mutual fund and intend to repurchase the same security, make sure you wait at least 31 days before buying it again. Otherwise, the trade is considered a “wash sale,” and the tax loss will be disallowed. The wash-sale rule also applies if you buy an option on the stock, sell it short or buy it through your spouse within 30 days before or after the sale.


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6 4   ATX MAN winter 2011

Time Any Trades Appropriately

When contemplating a change in your portfolio, don’t forget to consider how long you’ve owned each investment. Assets held for a year or less generate short-term capital gains, which are taxed as ordinary income. Depending on your tax bracket, that rate could be much higher. Long-term capital gains on the sale of assets held for more than a year are taxed at lower rates: 15 percent for most investors, 0 percent (through tax year 2012) for anyone in the lowest tax bracket. (Long-term gains on collectibles are different; those are taxed at 28 percent, and special rules apply to certain property held for five years or more.) Those rates are currently scheduled to change in 2013, increasing to 20 percent for most investors and 10 percent for those in the lowest tax bracket.


The first step in your year-end investment-planning process should be a review of your overall portfolio. That review can tell you whether you need to rebalance. If one type of investment has done well—for example, large-cap stocks—it might now represent a greater percentage of your portfolio than you originally intended. To rebalance, you would sell some of that asset class and use that money to buy other types of investments to bring your overall allocation back to an appropriate balance. Your overall review should also help you decide whether that rebalancing should be done before or after Dec. 31 for tax reasons.

Know When to Hold ’Em


Look at the Forest, Not Just the Trees


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Real estate

Austin’s Hottest Zip Codes for 2012 Investing in 78738, 78746, 78757 By Andrea Gowan


Area: West Lake Hills, Sunset Valley, Lost Creek Average home sales price: $898,786 Average number of days on the market: 77 Expected 2012 appreciation: 1.7 percent Hot neighborhoods: Davenport Ranch, Roby Roy, Rollingwood, Woods of Westlake

Austin is a beautiful city with many lovely neighborhoods and plenty of prime real estate just waiting to be snatched up by savvy buyers. But what is considered Austin’s “best” neighborhood and why? Ranked by Sterling’s Best Places to Live in Austin, zip code 78746 in the West Lake Hills and Sunset Valley area comes out as No 1. With an overall population growth of 6 percent since 2000, and a steady increase of 1 percent or more in appreciation values during the past decade, 78746 will surely stay on the top of the list for years to come. Zip code 78738, located from West Austin to Lakeway, is a builders’ favorite and new subdivisions are popping up everywhere in this area. With the new Lakeway Regional Medical Center and an exemplary school system, we haven’t yet seen this area’s full growth potential. North Austin’s 78757 zip code seems to be booming with an influx of small business. Just a bit north of downtown, these neighborhoods consist of remodels and craftsman-style homes. Buyers can still purchase at affordable prices with close proximity to downtown, major highways and shopping. Could 78757 be the next Tarrytown of Austin?

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Area: Bee Cave Average home sales price: $532,361 Average number of days on the market: 86 Expected 2012 appreciation: 1.02 percent Hot neighborhoods: Falconhead, Belevedere, Lake Pointe, Hills of Lakeway, Spillman Ranch, Rough Hollow

1 78757

Area: North Burnet Road between MoPac Expressway and North Lamar Boulevard Average home sales price: $265,361 Average number of days on the market: 56 Expected 2012 appreciation: 1.03 percent Hot neighborhoods: Allandale Estates, Allandale North, Crestivew, Violet Crown Heights, Wooten Park *Appreciation figures are based on appreciation rates from 2010 sold properties to 2011 sold properties.

2913 Waterbank CV (78746) 1 List Price: $1,488,000 Bedrooms: 5 Bathrooms: 5 Elegant Mediterranean home in Davenport Ranch/Eanes ISD. All bedrooms have in-suite bathrooms and views of the Hill Country. Family areas include a home theater with a Sony projector and 100-inch screen, game room, formal living and family room. The chef's kitchen includes a Wolf 36-inch gas cooking range and an additional Kitchen Aid convection oven, food warmer and microwave, Bosch dishwasher and Sub-Zero refrigeration. The master suite is located upstairs with a sitting area and beautiful views of the Pennybacker Bridge. For more photos and info:

0 11704 Sterling Panorama Terrace (78738) List Price: $439,000 Bedroom: 4 Bath: 3.5 Great young family home in a highly sought-after neighborhood. This former model home features recent updates including a kitchen with granite, stainless steel appliances and a built-in clear ice-maker. High ceilings, plantation shutters and wood blinds, as well as hardwood and tile floors throughout. This 3,398-square-foot home is located in the Lake Pointe subdivision just minutes to shopping and exemplary rated Lake Travis schools. For more information, contact, 512-657-4455.

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changes in texas paternity laws What you should know about mistaken paternity. By Sam Colletti Men who have been wrongly or mistakenly identified as the father of a child now have a legal remedy. In May 2011, the Texas Legislature passed new laws to address the issue of “mistaken paternity.”

What is Mistaken Paternity? Mistaken paternity describes the situation in which a man has either signed an acknowledgment of paternity or has been determined by court order to be the father of a child, but is not actually the child’s biological father and did not know at the time that he was not the biological father.

How Does the Law Work?

Amended Texas Family Code §161.005 now offers men who have reason to believe they are not the father of a child the ability to challenge the paternity determination by way of DNA testing. Upon filing a petition with the court, the man is entitled to a hearing in which he must present some credible evidence as to why he may not be the child’s biological father. At such a hearing, the mother of the child may present evidence, including evidence showing that the father knew he was not the biological father at the time he acknowledged paternity or the court found him to be the father. If the court is satisfied with the father’s evidence presented, it will order genetic testing. If the court-ordered DNA test shows that the man is not the child’s biological father, then his parental rights and duties are terminated, and importantly, his obligation to provide child support is terminated immediately.

Could This Negatively Impact the Child?

In many cases, the mistakenly identified father will have already established an emotional bond with the child. The court may hear evidence on this issue, and may determine that cutting off the mistakenly identified father from visitation with the child would significantly impair the child’s physical health or emotional well-being. The child’s mother may want to present her own

6 8   ATX MAN winter 2011

evidence regarding whether court-ordered visitation should continue if the father’s parental rights and obligations are otherwise terminated. After a hearing, the court can order visitation periods with the child for the mistakenly identified father. The court also has the power to order the child, the mother or the mistakenly identified father to undergo mental-health counseling.

What About the Financial Impact on the Mother?

Termination of the mistakenly identified father’s child support obligation does not release him from any amounts owed prior to the termination order. All previously owed child support, up to the date of the termination order, is still due and enforceable, and arrearages may be collected with interest. But moving forward from the date of termination, there is no child support obligation unless and until the true biological father is identified and determined by the court to be the father. Additionally, after the termination, the

mistakenly identified father may not be held in contempt of court for not paying past-due child support.

Is There a Time Limit on Filing a Mistaken Paternity Case?

Any man who believes himself mistakenly identified as a father may file his suit prior to Sept. 1, 2012. After that date, a man must file his suit within one year of the time he first learns that he may not be the child’s father. After Sept. 1, 2012, the issue of when the mistakenly identified father learned that he may not be the child’s father may be a significant issue in these cases. The court will have to hear evidence from the father and the mother to determine if a suit filed after Sept. 1, 2012, has been filed in a timely manner.

Sam Colletti is a family law attorney with Noelke English Maples St. Leger Blair, LLP. He joined the firm in March 2011 after having built a successful solo practice. Sam was listed among the Texas Super Lawyers Rising Stars for 2010, and regularly speaks at legal conferences on family law topics. Away from work, Sam volunteers with the Young Men’s Business League of Austin and enjoys spending time with his wife, Lauren. For more information, contact Sam Colletti at 512.480.9777, or visit


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Single Guy

Seven New Year’s Resolutions for Men By Eric Leech My resolutions for the coming year are to complain more, eat more, drink more, lie more, cheat more, drive faster, work slower and watch a whole lot more reality television with the aid of an adult diaper. Then, when next year rolls around, I will resolve to tone down all these bad habits and probably follow through with at least half of them! That may be fine for me. However, in today’s column, I am not recommending to do as I do, but rather as these seven resolutions say.

1. Renew Your Conviction A man without conviction (core beliefs) identifies himself by his profession. Having only his work to give him purpose drives him to be a workaholic, leaving him tired and cynical at the end of each day. Don’t allow yourself to expend so much energy at work that you have nothing left for your partner. Look within yourself and ask what is truly worth living for. You may be shocked to find your most valuable commodities have absolutely no badge or monetary value. 2. Put the Kiss Principle to Work It is sometimes difficult to communicate across the borders of love, but despite whatever issues you may be having with your partner, one thing that can almost never be done wrong is a true, heartfelt and passionate kiss. Kissing stops arguments, creates pair bonding and will leave your partner wanting more. A quarter of all couples claim they’re dissatisfied with their sex life, but rather than fretting about your lack of it, focus on one of its greatest preludes: the kiss. 7 0   ATX MAN winter 2011

3. Be a Blessing A man’s happiness comes from having relevance, purpose and impact. From the time he is born, a man is told he must be good at sports, academics, getting the best job and earning the most money. When a man frees himself from this singular self-focus, he can concentrate on being a blessing to others. It is more productive to be the driving force behind your partner’s happiness (encouragement, inspiration), than to base their joy off your own value and success.

4. Reduce Hurtful Habits A man needs to focus on the good in his relationship to understand its value. He creates distance and disappointment if he chooses to brood about unimportant details. However, sometimes he must look for the bad, especially if this includes his own hurtful habits. Criticizing, lying, blaming, threatening and bribing can destroy the trust, intimacy and security of any relationship. It doesn’t take much effort to make a big impact when you’re honest about your own worst faults.

5. Discover Your Female Dimension Some men lead. Others follow (henpecked), and a good portion walk alone. Men spend a lot of time combating loneliness, isolation and conscious rejection. The missing rib of Adam is a controversial topic. However, many men are unable to access the tender spots of their heart without a woman’s guidance. There is a feminine dimension to every man, but to discover this, you must realize not every problem is fixed by action. Sometimes listening, understanding and empathizing is all she really needs.

6. Learn How to Argue There is an etiquette to effective arguing that includes starting and ending each disagreement on a positive note. Use the word “I,” instead of “you” (as in, I don’t feel supported, in contrast to, You’re never there for me). Focus on listening and understanding your partner rather than winning the argument (ask questions if necessary). The only way to come out ahead is to either compromise (find a solution that satisfies you both), or take turns getting what you want.

7. Affair-Proof Your Relationship Nobody is immune from temptation. A man’s best offense against straying is a strong defense. Wear your wedding band (or other relationship trinket) as a reminder of your commitment. Take your partner to the majority of business/ friend outings (in sight is in mind). Never let bad feelings harbor (ask what’s wrong, and what you can do to make it better). Do something nice at least once a day, and maintain enthusiasm in your relationship by continuously rediscovering your partner via your own curiosities.

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The Last Word by roy spence

2012: The Year of the Giving Man.


et’s do this. Let’s make 2012 in Austin, TX, the Year of the Giving Man. OK, Austin men, let’s all pick something of personal passion and purpose and give to it. Give to it with love and enthusiasm and commitment. There is no question that our nation is struggling to find its purpose again while Americans are, for the most part, getting up each day and trying to do the best they can for their families, companies, organizations and the communities in which they live and work. The American people have the will and the can-do spirit to get us moving again, even if our elected leaders are too busy getting re-elected to recognize that we find most of them self-serving, out of touch and frankly, boring. But I digress. So men and women, ATX Man magazine has agreed to be the central communications portal for the Year of the Giving Man. (Since this magazine is named ATX Man, I am giving a shout out to you Austin men in particular.) Here is how it will work: During the next three months (December through February), simply state what your giving commitment will be in 2012 and send your pledge to, where it will be posted throughout the year. I would also encourage you to challenge your friends and colleagues to do the same. Women are welcome to make the pledge, so come on, all of you wives, mothers, daughters, sisters, girlfriends and

7 2   ATX MAN winter 2011

admirers of Austin men, tell us what you are going to give in 2012. This is how I plan to contribute: I am most passionate about the American Dream. The American ideal is that here in America, if you can dream it, with hard work, purpose, relentless energy and some help from mentors, you can go out there and build a business and make a living doing what you love to do. To reiterate, if you can dream it then you can do it! My heroes are the mobile vending entrepreneurs. So last year I joined forces with RISE Global, a nonprofit program dedicated to inspiring and empowering entrepreneurs, and gave a “Don’t Do Mild” startup grant to a wonderful young entrepreneur who had to compete with hundreds of others for the most compelling new idea for a business. I have now decided that as part of the Year of the Giving Man, I am going to give another “Don’t Do Mild” grant in 2012 and help another would-be entrepreneur start his or her company. So take up the challenge and we will all be better for it. You guys pick something, something you are passionate about, somewhere that you can make a difference. Help build a new neighborhood park.

Volunteer in schools teaching young people about whatever you love. Give to the Trail of Lights for 2012 so that next year, we can bring this great tradition back. Give your time and love to a senior or the Humane Society. Give more time and love to your family or friends. There are so many ways to give of your time, your talent and your treasure. The only requirement is that you give to something or someone you love or feel passionate about, and you have to sign a Giving Man pledge. At the end of 2012, go to the ATX Man website and tell us how you delivered on your Giving Man pledge, or you have to fess up that you messed up. We will join together this time next year to celebrate all of the wonderful things that have happened as a result of the generosity shown in 2012, in this year of the Giving Austin Man. Austin men (and women), are you up to the challenge? Sign up today. Make that commitment. Let’s do some giving this year! For more information, go to

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ATX MAN December 2011  

The latest issue of ATX MAN!

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