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Making Dallas Even Better

Leading Off (5/24/16)

Susan Hawk in Houston indefinitely. The Dallas County District Attorney, who returned to the Menninger Clinic in Houston due to severe depression, doesn’t have a return date set yet. She was treated there last year before resuming her work in Dallas. Messina Madson, Hawk’s top prosecutor, will deal with daily office goings-on in the meantime.

Loose dogs captured in Oak Cliff. The loose dog problem continued when two dogs allegedly bit a man in east Oak Cliff yesterday morning. Police and animal control officers ended up capturing the dogs after fending the dogs off themselves.

High-speed internet coming to southern dallas. AT&T is aiming to bring high-speed internet to southern Dallas neighborhoods, which will help residents and businesses become more connected. Executives from AT&T are announcing the plan at a press conference this morning at Dallas City Hall. Mayor Rawlings says this shows that major companies are now concentrating on southern Dallas.

Dallas bachelorette JoJo Fletcher begins her journey to find love. The 25-year-old’s season premiered last night. It entailed a man riding in on a horse dressed as a unicorn, a guy wearing a kilt, another guy dressed as Santa Claus, and, obviously, alcohol-fueled antics. Good luck, JoJo.

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Byron Nelson Report: Real Housewives of Dallas Edition

For most people at the AT&T Byron Nelson, the action is on the course. But for a lucky few, the real fun happens in the homes that line the TPC Four Seasons. Saturday is always the biggest house-party day, and yesterday was no exception. The best parties are in homes that look out at holes 3, 16, and 17. This year, though, the mansion off 17 that typically hosts the tournament’s biggest bash was silent. A “for sale” sign stood out front.

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Dallas Mavericks to Enter the World of Minecraft

So says Mashable:

The Dallas Mavericks will launch Mavs World, a dedicated Minecraft hub for fans to experience American Airlines Center remade in all its blocky glory. Mavs World will include games and activities — some focused on basketball, but others will include building competitions.

To Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, Mavs World is a way for fans to have fun with the Mavericks, but also inspire their love of tech.

Minecraft makes you think. You have to be creative. Logical. Fun. Those are great foundations for learning,” Cuban told Mashable. 

Mavs World will launch later this summer.

Podcast: Skip Hollandsworth, Author of The Midnight Assassin, Talks Serial Killers and Costco Jewelry

You can make an argument that Skip Hollandsworth is the all-time champ among D Magazine writers. He’s the only staffer, current or former, to have placed three bylines in our list of our 40 greatest stories ever, which we put together a couple years ago. (If you haven’t read “The Black Widow,” “Max’s Last Hurrah,” or “The Fall of the House of Von Erich,” you should.)

Hollandsworth defected to Texas Monthly in 1989 and is now one of five (!) executive editors on that magazine’s masthead. He still lives in Dallas and is the author of a well-reviewed new book called The Midnight Assassin, about the unsolved mystery of a serial killer in 19th-century Austin.

He was good enough to sit down with us at the Old Monk for a chat that spent far more time focused on the merits of Costco than I would’ve expected.

You can have a listen via the player below, or find EarBurner on iTunes, Stitcher, or through your favorite podcatcher. But first, please note:

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T.D. Jakes Aiming to Bring His New Talk Show to Dallas—Eventually

Bishop T.D. Jakes won’t be taping his new daytime talk show in Dallas, at least in the beginning. But he says he hopes to bring the production from Los Angeles to his adopted hometown eventually, just as Oprah did her top-rated, long-running talk show from Chicago. Jakes’ secular program, which is scheduled to debut this fall in cities including Dallas, Atlanta, and Cleveland, will be produced and distributed by Tegna Inc. (formerly Gannett) unit Tegna Media and feature a mix of celebrities and “regular people,” Jakes said last week at a Dallas charity event. (Specifically, it was a pre-party at somebody’s house for Friday’s Genesis Women’s Shelter luncheon and featured a performance by C&W singer LeAnn Rimes.) Jakes’ hour-long syndicated show will be aired initially in markets covering “60 percent of the country,” he added. An author, pastor, businessman, and filmmaker, Jakes founded Dallas’ Potter’s House mega-church, which claims 30,000 members. The pastor also is said to have 5 million followers on social media.

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Ellen DeGeneres Sends Kid to Meet George W. Bush

Yes, Ellen DeGeneres’ daytime talker is one of the season passes on my Tivo. No, I didn’t set that season pass. But I do occasionally see some of the show, and this week Ellen sent one of her kid correspondents — a presidential history trivia expert from Kansas — to visit the George W. Bush Presidential Center.

She even got to paint with the former president himself. Things get meta when he plays with young Macey’s George W. ventriloquist’s dummy. Watch for yourself.

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The Real Housewives of Dallas Episode 4 Recap

For the past week, my family and I haven’t been able to live in our house, which was, as you know from my Episode 3 recap, flooded by a burst washing machine supply hose. We moved back in yesterday, and what should I find waiting in the mailbox? Our new property appraisal, up by a shockingly unfair amount. Not your problem! All you want is your recap. A friend of mine gave birth last night. I was texting her husband during her labor, seeing if Mom was doing okay. “She’s fine,” he said, “and she’s anxiously awaiting your Real Housewives of Dallas recap tomorrow.” It’s more important than childbirth! So let’s tackle Episode 4, “Mouth of the South.”

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Will Ousting of Dallas Summer Musicals Honcho Impact Fair Park’s Future?

Michael Jenkins’ name is synonymous with Dallas Summer Musicals. For 21 years, Jenkins has been president of the Fair Park-based arts organization that has been bringing touring Broadway shows to Dallas for 76 years. Jenkins’ career with DSM started as an usher when he was 14. At 17, he became assistant to the managing director. As an investor in Broadway productions, Jenkins has earned nearly two dozen Tony Awards. So it is a bit of a surprise to hear that he is leaving the organization not amidst the fanfare of a retirement farewell, but because, the Dallas Morning News reports, he was fired.

The story is a little fuzzy. In an interview he gave the DMN a week ago, Jenkins described his ousting as “a palace coup,” and said through tears that he felt unfairly dismissed because of his age and an unpaid loan the former DSM-chief made to the organization. In a statement from Dallas Summer Musicals published on the website Theater Jones, the DSM board says they are looking for a “new generation” of leadership, citing the desire to find a bridge builder who can create partnerships within Dallas’ arts community and maximize the use of the DSM’s home, the Music Hall at Fair Park.

From Jenkins’ loan to the DSM press release’s repeated references to squeezing more revenue out of the Music Hall at Fair Park, it is not too difficult to read between the lines in both of these statements.

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Whatever Happened to That Di Suvero Sculpture Near the Meyerson?

You’ll recall that Mark di Suvero’s 60-foot Proverb sculpture had to be taken down last year when the DSO sold a chunk of land on which an office tower is now being built. An alert FrontBurnervian has discovered where Proverb wound up. It now stands in a canyon on a Montana ranch. And now you know [beat] the rest of the story.

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Podcast: LeeAnne Locken of Real Housewives of Dallas on Her Carny Past and the Show’s Future

Despite all that Tim has written in each of of his episode recaps of the first three installments of Bravo’s The Real Housewives of Dallas, series star LeeAnne Locken was game to appear at the Old Monk on Thursday afternoon to chat about the show — and game enough for another cringe-inducing (for me anyway) game of iPhone roulette.

Before you listen to what turned out to be the second-longest episode in the illustrious history of EarBurner, please note:

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The Real Housewives of Dallas Episode 3 Recap

Once again, my personal problems are of no concern to you. How bored would you be by the story of my house being flooded by a burst washing machine supply hose? What do you care about my hardwoods and the army of fans deployed throughout my house, making an infernal racket, forcing me to turn up the volume on my TV to watch The Real Housewives of Dallas to the point where my wife had trouble hearing the insurance adjuster on the phone? All you care about is the recap. I understand. I am here to satisfy you — much like the cowboy ecdysiasts at LaBare that we meet in Episode 3, titled “Making Frenemies.”

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Leading Off (4/26/16)

Jury seated for Mexican drug cartel murder case. A jury in Fort Worth will hear opening statements today in a trial of the men charged in the murder of a Mexican drug cartel lawyer. Jesus Gerardo Ledezma Cepeda and Jose Luis Cepeda Cortes are on trial for gunning down Juan Jesus Guerrero Chapa in 2013 in Southlake. They were charged with interstate stalking and conspiracy to commit murder for hire.

Johnny Manziel indicted, will plead “not guilty.” A Dallas County grand jury voted to indict Manziel on misdemeanor domestic violence charges. The indictment will become official today, and Manziel’s attorney, Bob Hinton, says that his client will plead “not guilty” to assaulting his ex-girlfriend, Colleen Crowley.

Mavs done in playoffs. A 118-104 loss to Oklahoma City yesterday means that the Mavs have stopped short of the second playoff round for the fifth year in a row. The combined injuries on the team added up, and their efforts just weren’t enough to surpass the Thunder. But I’ll always be hopeful for the coming year.

This afternoon brings severe weather threat. Storms are expected later today throughout North Texas with the possibility of hail and tornadoes. Stay safe out there.

Kinky Friedman Brings His Irreverent Satire to The Lodge

It was an eclectic group that gathered at The Lodge last night to mark the establishment’s 20th anniversary with a special appearance by Kinky Friedman, the iconic, irreverent Jewish Texan singer/songwriter/novelist and sometime political candidate. There in a private back room at the “classy gentlemen’s” club were people like the Lodge founder and CEO Dawn Rizos, Robert Wilonsky and Gromer Jeffers Jr. from The Dallas Morning News, The Ticket’s Mike Rhyner, and Ruth Buzzi. Ruth Buzzi, the Laugh-In lady who’d whack the old man with her purse? Yep; turns out she and her husband Kent Perkins are old friends of Friedman’s, and often put him up at their ranch near Stephenville. It’s a good thing all these people in the private room understood and appreciated Kinky’s offbeat brand of satirical humor, because some people at the upscale strip club didn’t.

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