That’s according to GQ. And “scent critic” Chandler Burr means “smelliest” in the best possible way:
Cities, like people, have their own smell, their own body odors and perfumes that take on personalities. Dallas is one of the strangest scents I have ever encountered. Highways of strip malls and gas stations and exit signs. Insanely wide streets. It’s very New World-smelling. It almost has a non-scent scent. Like many cities, you get concrete, car exhaust, and dust. If you really focus, you can pick up on the nearly undetectable Texas live oak. It’s best during thunderstorms, though. The crisp smell of lightning and rain and vast flat space pervades and takes on a three-dimensional quality.
God, I love the smell of the air before a thunderstorm. He’s got that right, but I never thought it peculiar to Dallas.
We’re No. 10 on the list. The best smelling place? Â Los Angeles.
It’s a strange list. Mumbai ranks above us too. Â Paris is singled out as the worst-smelling.
Santa Clarita, California, has in recent years been having trouble with heroin use among its young people. So the community’s newspaper, the Santa Clarita Valley Signal, turned to leaders in Plano to seek advice on how they beat their ownÂ well-documented teen heroin epidemic in the 1990s.
Plano Police Chief Gregory A. Rushin says it’s a never-ending fight:
“We haven’t scaled back at all,” Rushin said, adding every officer brought in and assigned to fight heroin remains committed to that fight 15 years later.
“We added numbers to that (heroin) unit, and we have not reduced any of those numbers,” he said.
“In this battle, we’ve seen no end in sight.”
Plano’s efforts were known as the awesomely named “Operation Rockfest,” because (one assumes) when you’re trying to connect with the kids to get them to stop doing illegal drugs you’ve got to talk to them on their level and some cops had heard that the rock music was popular with the kids.
North Carolina’s Public Policy Polling found that 14 percent of Texas voters have a favorable opinion of Jerry Jones, compared to 48 percent who hold an unfavorableÂ opinion. TM Daily Post breaks down some other interesting numbers, including how much more popular Mark Cuban is than Jerry Jones.
During a Google-Plus sponsored video chat yesterday, Jennifer Wedel, of Fort Worth, asked the President about why so many U.S. companies are allowed to use a worker visa program to bring in foreign workers while her husband, an engineer, struggles to find a job. Wedel, who described herself to the Star-Telegram as an “avid Republican,” was pretty stunned by the response she got. “We should get his resume and I’ll forward it to some these companies that are telling me they can’t find enough engineers in this field,” Obama said. He asked what kind of engineer her husband is (semiconductor engineer, it turns out), then reminded her again that he was serious about the resume. Then later, he reminded her yet again that he meant it and would be looking for the resume. You can see the interaction for yourself here. Wedel’s question starts at the 5:50 mark.
It’s a musical Tuesday, which doesn’t have quite the same ring to it as musical Monday. I take what I can get, however.
First off, over at the Pocket Sandwich, The Levee Singers are kicking off a once-a-month music series. The group celebrated 50 years just last April, and every show of that anniversary tour sold out thanks to their legions of devoted fans. You should jump on the chance to see them tonight, if you can. (I put in a couple calls to both the organizers and the venues, and haven’t heard back the most recent status of tickets. As of 1:20 pm, there are 15 tickets left. Go.) Conveniently, I will be in the neighborhood anyway returning discs two and three of the first season of Justified at Premiere Video. The Pocket Sandwich has food and drinks, but I’d just as soon as go to Urban Taco in Mockingbird Station for a couple chicken tinga tacos and a margarita beforehand.
Otherwise, I recommend making tracks to Double Wide, a place I don’t actually find myself all that often. But there’s no better reason to go than this evening, since Fred Holston, son of our excellent former Law Man Walking columnist Bill Holston, is DJing with Jake Schrock. The first time I met Fred was many, many months ago at Bryan Street Tavern, when he and this Jake character swooped in and had a few slices of my pizza. Fred’s been a wonderfully friendly face to see out and about ever since. Over on FrontRow, Christopher Mosley had this to say about Fred’s musical choices: “Fred has an affinity for various outsiders and ne’er-do-wells of song, particularly those from the 60s, and therefore his selections should be solid. Expect everything from Houston composition outlawsÂ The Red Krayola to at least a couple of people who datedÂ Nico. That’s my safest guess.” There’s no cover at the bar tonight, so that’s always nice.
While the organizers of last year’s North Texas Super Bowl are wondering why the football gods couldn’t have delivered us the weather we’re having this week in 2011 – instead of the Snow-and-Ice-Mageddon we got –Â Smithsonian.com reflects upon another Texas contribution to our country’s annual orgy on football and new television commercial campaigns: the Frito.
Those little fried corn chips were given birth in San Antonio in the 1930s, and they remain a cornerstone of business for the Plano-based Frito Lay company, which owns the trademark for the “Frito Chili Pie”: officially aÂ “packaged meal combination consisting primarily of chili or snack food dips containing meat or cheese corn-based snack foods, namely, corn chips.”
But Smithsonian traces the true roots of Fritos much further back in the history of the Americas:
As much scorn and derision as today’s leading nutritional gurus heap onto processed foods, it’s worth noting that Fritos arrived here by way of a Mesoamerican staple and their invention and flavor owes a debt to one of the greatest food processing technologies ever invented: nixtamalization. The 3,000-year-old tradition adding calcium hydroxide–wood ash or lime–so greatly enriches the available amino acids in masa corn that Sophie Coe writes in America’s First Cuisines that the process underlies “the rise of Mesoamerican civilization.” Lacking this technology, early Europeans and Americans (who considered corn fit for slaves and swine) learned that eating a diet exclusively based on unprocessed corn led to pellagra, a debilitating niacin deficiency causing dermatitis, diarrhea, dementia and death.
Just a little something to think about as you’re dipping your chips this Sunday.
I pointed yesterday to a dispatch from the Dallas Observer about Ralph Isenberg, a fellow who seems to be a bit, um, forward. Turns out, he doesn’t limit his threats to Observer writers. In the comments to that Observer post, our own Georgia Fisher related a similar encounter with Ralph Isenberg:
I write for Oak Cliff People, a sister pub of D Magazine, and had a near-freaking-identical experience with Isenberg a few months ago. He broached the subject of his wife, then went off the deep end — screaming, shaking, calling me a bitch, threatening me legally, telling me my career was all but ruined … you get it.
He was enraged and out of sorts to a degree that could’ve easily beget physical violence. I don’t say this for dramatic effect, either; It was just obvious, and made me feel sorrier than ever for his wife.
All the while, Isenberg left a couple of immigrants to sit near the receptionist’s desk, quietly waiting on him for 45 minutes (they’d made an appointment), and finally tried — still howling and sweating and panting — to drag them into our one-sided fight.
Anyway. Over the course of the next few days, he blew me up with text messages, trying to coax me into a trip back to the Bank Tower (though he’d supposedly “alerted security to never allow [me] on the premises again”) and take a second stab at the story – the same one, more or less, that the News printed this past Saturday. And finally, after sending about eight text unanswered text messages, he gave me a line about having problems with his “medication.”
Makes me wonder just how much the Dallas Morning News regrets publishing this glowing profile of Isenberg on January 21.
Somehow, I’ve neglected to put this up for, like, 18 days. I regret the error. Oh, what’s my favorite part? I guess I’d have to say: YES.
GM To Open $200 Million Plant in Arlington. The automaker is being a bit coy, but everyone assumes it will announce this morning that it is building a new stamping operation at its Arlington Truck Assembly Plant. In related news, I will announce tomorrow morning that I am opening next to D Magazine headquarters a new $100 million tramp stamping plant.
Deep Ellum Worries About New School. The charter school network Uplift Education is set to open a new school in Deep Ellum. You can imagine the possible conflicts. I’ll give you two leads. The first is from Jay Gormley at CBS Channel 11: “When most people think of Deep Ellum in Dallas, they probably think of bars, night clubs and late-night partying. But schools? ‘I don’t see how it’s a good environment for them,’ said bar owner, Josh Bridges.” And now Avi Selk’s story behind the paywall at the Morning News: “Restaurateurs and entrepreneurs came by the dozens Monday evening. They sat on the thin carpet and spilled out the doors of the Deep Ellum Foundation’s lobby to pepper city officials for an hour with variations on their shared concern: How do we keep our bars safe from that school?” That there is how it’s done, folks.
Khloe Kardashian’s New Radio Gig in US Weekly. By now you likely know that KK is doing a regular segment on Mix 102.9. Her first installment was yesterday. Here’s the lead from US Weekly: “Live on the air, it’s DJ Khloe Kardashian! Now fully settled in Texas with her husband Lamar Odom hard at work for the Dallas Mavericks, Kardashian, 27, took on a new gig as a radio disc jockey Monday, signing on the air at Mix 102.9 for her show, The Mix Up With Khloe.” Zac, I would like you to explain to everyone what’s wrong with that lead.
DISD To Install New Bathroom Stalls. From a press release: “The Dallas School District’s new HDPE Hiny Hiders bathroom partitions from Scranton Products will help reduce wear and tear, bacteria, dents, scratches and vandalism.” I think I speak for the 177 teachers who are slated to be laid off when I say I am outraged — outraged! — that, at a time like this, the district is spending money on new Hiny Hiders.
Update (2/1/12) — I was, of course, just looking for a joke to make about Hiny Hiders. Nonetheless, that DISD stat needs to be corrected. From Jon Dahlander, DISD spokesman: “By consolidating the 11 campuses, 177 positions will be reduced, 65 of which are teacher positions. We expect several of those teachers to follow students to their “new” schools. Those who don’t follow their students will go into the job pool and have the first opportunity to teach at other campuses. Because we have a lot of attrition through retirements and resignations, we expect all of the teachers–and the 11 principals–to find other positions within the district.”