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The Black-eyed Pea

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he first time I ever stepped foot in the Black-eyed Pea on Cedar Springs was in May 1991, when Queen Elizabeth II was paying a state visit that brought her to Dallas. “Just what Oak Lawn needs” read a handwritten sign on the chalkboard menu. “Another queen.” That’s what it’s been like at The Black-eyed Pea — at this point, the longest continually-operating business in one location on The Strip — since the beginning: Out, proud and a little saucy. Funny, then, that this bastion of home-cookin’ was the flagship first location in the company chain. Founded by Mesquite native Gene Street, it opened in its present space in the spring of 1975, at a time when Oak Lawn was already the hotbed of gay life in Dallas — an unlikely spot for a place that serves (famously) Texas-sized chicken-fried steak (pictured), broccoli and rice casserole and homemade cornbread. Then again, the gays have always loved kitsch … and they appreciate a good deal on food when they find one. The attitude hasn’t changed (for me) since that first visit more than 20 years ago. On my last lunch there, I asked my waiter for tea: “Regular, sweet or Long Island?” he deadpanned. “Hey, It’s an option! I’m not gonna tell your boss,” he promised. — Arnold Wayne Jones

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dallasvoice.com

05.16.14

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THE OAK LAWN BAND 1980

OAK LAWN BOWLING ASSOCIATION 1980

Profile for Dallas Voice

Dallas Voice 30th Anniversary Issue 05-16-14  

Dallas Voice: The Premier Media Source for LGBT Texas for 30 Years

Dallas Voice 30th Anniversary Issue 05-16-14  

Dallas Voice: The Premier Media Source for LGBT Texas for 30 Years

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