Object moved

Object moved to here.

Ask John Neely Bryan: Which Book Should We Force Dallas Schoolkids to Read Next?

Question: What should be the Big D Reads 2016 book? — Krista N.

Firstly, I am compelled as a man of conscience to challenge the premise of your question. I’m not at all convinced that it is proper to encourage the unwashed masses towards literary interests. Consider: we spend untold billions of public dollars teaching children to translate ancient Roman symbols into the familiar phonemes of modern English vernacular only to see dreck like this elevated to the top of best-seller lists:

Full Story

#StayCoolDallas and Win a $200 Gift Card

Today could be the first 90-degree day of 2015 in North Texas, so there may be no better time to prepare yourself for the inevitable onslaught of summer’s heat than by reading the cover story of the June issue of D Magazine. There you’ll find ice cream and snow cones, water parks and “chill” patios.

But we’d also like to see your favorite means of surviving through the high temperatures: frozen cocktails, icy treats, pool pics, or wherever you like to settle down for a nap outdoors in the shade. Just share a photo on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter using the #staycooldallas through June 30 to enter for a chance to win a $200 gift card to the Grove at Harwood.

And now, because I grew up with a mother for whom every sentence I said to her could become a Broadway song cue, I can’t help but post this in response to the hashtag for this month’s contest:

Full Story

Leading Off (6/3/15)

Frisco High School Students Walk Out to Support Principal. When students heard last week that principal Sylvia Palacios would be reassigned to the district’s alternative school, they took to Twitter with the hashtag #savesylvia. Yesterday, a few hundred took to the street, all in an effort to convince the superintendent to keep Palacios in her current position. Sounds like something straight out of Lean on Me.

Police Chase Ends with Two Dead in Italy. It started around 8:30 p.m. yesterday. That’s when, according to a DPS spokesperson, “the suspects assaulted the Italy officer, injuring him, and stole the Italy Police Department Chevrolet Tahoe.” Then there was a spike strip, a negotiation over the police radio, and an apparent suicide inside the Tahoe, before the second suspect was shot and killed by police. An investigation is underway.

Incredibly Awful News Involving Two 14-Year-Old Girls. A lawsuit alleges that a local attorney raped a 14-year-old sex trafficking victim — after promising to take her to a shelter. The details in this story are horrific. Same for this story, about a 14-year-old in Pleasant Grove who was impregnated by a family member, then beaten by other family members in an effort to abort the baby. I’m not even going to write what police say happened next.

Joey Gallo Makes Impressive Big League Debut. Last year Grantland called Texas Rangers prospect Joey Gallo “The Most Interesting Man in the Minors.” Last night, in his Major League debut, Gallo had a home run, four RBIs, and ended up a triple short of the cycle, immediately making him one of the most interesting men in the majors.

Full Story

D Magazine’s Catherine Downes Judges Cooking Channel’s Big Bad BBQ Battle

Last week the ever-humble Catherine Downes, our online dining editor, didn’t bother mentioning to us that the reality TV competition that she participated in (as a judge) earlier this year was airing on Sunday night. And, busy as many of us were hobnobbing with the media elite this weekend, I didn’t get a chance to see it until today. Though I’m not even sure I receive the Cooking Channel at my home anyway.

Catherine was great deciding whether Cousins Bar-B-Q bested the roving chef from Brooklyn around whom the entire two-episode “series” is contrived. You can see her beginning just after the 18-minute mark. I was surprised to learn that she’s apparently been moonlighting for “Dallas Magazine.”

The show filmed the day of this year’s Snowmaggedon, and it took poor Catherine nearly three hours to drive to the location in Fort Worth and another couple hours to drive back home to Dallas. They didn’t pay her nearly enough for this.

Full Story

The Dallas Morning News Still Can’t Tell Dallas Apart From Dallas-Fort Worth

It’s the kind of rosy economic news we’re used to reading, an article proclaiming Dallas as the “nation’s most business friendly city.” Typically, I’d gloss over such a headline because I already know what’s in store. The story will probably contain a link to some study that uses vaguely scientific metrics to create a clickable list. You post, sit back, and let the internet work its magic.

But after spending much of the weekend at the tax-funded Omni, explaining to a bunch of editors from other cities just how “business friendly” Dallas’ political culture is, that phrase jumped-out at me. I wanted to see how they attempted to quantify “friendliness,” so I clicked through.

Full Story

D Magazine Wins City Magazine Award, Fabulous Weekend at the Omni

I probably shouldn’t mention that we were actually nominated for eight of the awards handed out last night at the annual City and Regional Magazine Association conference. This year Dallas played host to the event, so D Magazine was especially well-represented (quantity-wise, at least) throughout the three days of receptions, panels, lunches, and keynote speeches.

It all went down at the government-owned Omni Dallas Convention Center, where out-of-town attendees were heard to marvel at the novelty of televisions in their rooms’ bathrooms and the “Vegas-style” fun at the pool. Among the notables spotted haunting the halls of the hotel — each for their own, unrelated reasons — were Dallas City Councilman Dwaine Caraway, Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins, Dallas Cowboys legend Emmitt Smith, and several Doctors Who.

Full Story

Leading Off (6/1/15)

Lake Lewisville Goes Over 100 Year Flood Mark. The lake is now 537 feet deep above sea level, and despite the sun yesterday, waters continue to rise. The state should be getting some federal storm aid soon, but that’s complicated.

DISD Dismisses 85 Employees. This is an awkwardly self-promotional story from WFAA, but the bottom line seems to be: 85 district employees were let go because of a $10 million budget mistake I don’t completely understand.

Allen ISD’s Stadium Will Reopen for Graduation. You’ll recall that, a few years ago, the district spent $60 million to build a nice new football stadium. (Tim forced me to sneak into the luxury suite when it opened.) Then the stadium had to close for $10 million-plus in new repairs. Well, this Friday the gates will open once again.

Josh Hamilton Is Incredible. There’s no way of knowing why exactly the Angels decided to send Hamilton back to the Rangers, a division rival, while also paying most of his very expensive salary. But we’re glad they did. This weekend, in his first home series back with the good guys, he had one multi-homerun game, and one game-winning, walk-off pinch hit. The moment was so exciting, a few players doused an unsuspecting reporter with Gatorade.

Full Story

Podcast: That Sports Girl, Gina Miller, Talks Josh Hamilton And Building Her Own Media Empire

Thursday afternoon former CBS 11/TXA 21 sports reporter Gina Miller — now proprietor of Gina Miller Media and Gina Miller’s Blog —  stopped by the Old Monk to talk about Josh Hamilton’s return, her new life as a lifestyle blogger, and why she was forced to endure years of living in Houston during the 1990s.

Also whom does Tim force Gina to call and confess her undying love for in the middle of the show? You’ll have to listen to find out.

First, a few clarifications and audio-visual aids for the episode:

Full Story

Ask John Neely Bryan: Lightning Round Via the Twitterverse

It’s been brought to my attention that a fair number of you, dear readers, are too lazy to type out an electronic missive and push a button to send it to me at ask@dmagazine.com. Even though I have a well-established track record of solving your problems — bringing hope and joy and irresistible animal magnetism to the most troubled of souls — some refuse to seek my help.

Go where the people are, the editors of this web blog have repeatedly enjoined. And so I finally had no choice but to accede to their wishes. Yesterday, shortly after 3 p.m., I took command of the @DMagazine Twitter handle to offer up insights in bite-size portions. Since it is exceedingly difficult to limit my wisdom to 140-character chunks, I’m offering bonus contest below, in this sampling of what transpired:

Full Story

Podcast: Carpetbagger Joe Tone of the Denver-Based Dallas Observer Talks About His Horsies-and-Drugs Book

Lame duck Dallas Observer editor Joe Tone stopped by the Old Monk yesterday afternoon to discuss his book deal and what the future holds for the alt-weekly newspaper he’s abandoning. Plus, he and Tim play an excruciating new game, and Eric Celeste makes a cameo appearance.

What else you need to know this week:

Full Story

Leading Off (5/20/15)

Storms Bring Floods and Tornadoes. There were dozens of reported tornadoes across North Texas and Oklahoma last night. At least one building in Mineral Wells collapsed. And there was “significant damage” reported in Runaway Bay.

Five Dead Bikers Were From North Texas. The dead men range in age from 19 to 47. It will likely be weeks before we know who may have been killed in the original fight and who may have been killed by police. You can see all 171 mug shots of the men arrested here. Zac will be along later with a list of his favorite biker nicknames. (My choice: “Gimmi Jimmy.”)

Former Birdville ISD Student Sues District Over Christian Prayers. Isaiah Smith, 20, claims he suffered years of bullying in the North Richland Hills school district, including anti-gay slurs and having baseballs thrown at him. He says it’s related to the Christian invocations used to start every school board meeting.

That Controversial Black Rhino Hunt Is Over. You’ll recall a few years ago the Dallas Safari Club auctioned off the chance to kill an endangered black rhino. The winner, Corey Knowlton, bid $350,000. (Stephen Colbert mocked the whole thing pretty viciously.) Well, Knowlton eventually got his rhino. And CNN’s Ed Lavandera was along for the trip.

Full Story

Grapevine Releases Dash Cam Video of Police Shooting

On February 20, Rubén García Villalpando was shot and killed on the side of Highway 121 by a Grapevine police officer named Robert Clark. For months, activists and family members of the dead man have asked that the dash cam video from that night be released to the public.

Now that a grand jury has declined to indict Clark, the video has been released. Sort of.

Grapevine police put together this video, with footage from the dash cam mixed with the Grapevine police chief explaining what happened, from the perspective of law enforcement. It appears that Villalpando drove away from the officer despite sirens and lights, including weaving through cars on the highway. Then once he did pull over, he disobeys the officer’s orders to stay in the car. He tells the officer, in English, to kill him. Then approaches the officer despite at least 20 orders to move back and stay by the car.

The actual shooting takes place just out of frame. It seems like non-lethal force could have been an option, and other officers have made news by not killing people in similar circumstances. But by most standards, this looks justified. When Villalpando started moving toward Clark, the officer was probably too far away to use a Taser and already had his gun drawn. When Villalpando got close enough, Clark fired twice.

Full Story

Help Wanted: Dallas City Hall Reporter/Blogger For D Magazine’s FrontBurner

Recent public discussions about removing elevated-highway barriers that sharply divide neighborhoods and the alternative futures envisioned for the Trinity River floodplain signal that Dallas is on the verge of an important transformation. Whether new ideas or the old guard come out on top in these fights remains to be seen, but it’s clear already just how much is at stake.

Those are a couple of the headline issues, the arguments that have sucked up so much of the oxygen in council debates and municipal elections. But in the ninth-largest city in the United States there are thousands upon thousands of smaller actions taken every day by officials and government staff that have significant effects on the people who live and work here.

D Magazine aims to bring greater attention to all these matters — both those the size of potholes and as big as signature bridges — by hiring a blogger/reporter keen to make a name for himself or herself with thoughtful, data-driven coverage of Dallas City Hall. It’s got to be someone who can spot the opportunities for inquiry in every council or committee agenda, who knows that public meetings usually aren’t where the decisions get made and can find and follow the paper trail to prove it. It’s got to be someone just as comfortable requesting and sorting through reams of data as he or she is talking with sources. We want to move past the political jargon, past the false balance of he said/she said reporting, to get to the facts.

In addition, we want a writer capable of tracking the daily coverage of other news sources throughout the week and offering commentary and aggregation of the best of what our readers need to know. This is an ideal gig for a smart recent graduate who is hungry to become part of the civic conversation. Interested applicants should send a resume and cover letter (including salary requirement) to jason.heid@dmagazine.com.

Full Story

New D Magazine Podcast: The Vagina Dialogues With Dr. Seema Yasmin

On this week’s episode of EarBurner, Dr. Seema Yasmin — public health professor at the University of Texas at Dallas and reporter for the Dallas Morning News — discusses her recent article on vaginal rejuvenation, the public shaming of the two “normal, white women” at the Kessler Theater, and how a native Londoner ended up living in Rockwall.

After the show, Yasmin sampled the Old Monk‘s fish & chips for the first time. She pronounced them “pretty good,” which is pretty much a ringing endorsement from a proper Englishwoman.

What else you should know to better enjoy the show:

Full Story