Thursday, December 1, 2011


Rural Texas has much to recommend it: scenic man-made lakes, great chicken friend steak, a cheap cost of living and fascinating, often frightening vernacular architecture.  Take for instance Donna's Egg Rolls above (out of frame to the right).  Donna moved to the United States from Korea and now serves homemade egg rolls and burgers out of a decrepit shack in her front yard.  Its not exactly the kind of place that inspires you to slam on the breaks and pull over the pickup, but Donna's delicious egg rolls can't be denied.  Donna manages to save up enough money flipping burgers to return to Korea and visit her family once a year.  

What you don't see on her eccentric Golgotha-themed front porch are the 20 barking yard dogs locked in kennels.  Before you judge too harshly, keep in mind that my parents live in the poorest county in the state, settled largely by freed slaves and migrating Indians from Alabama.  It remains a majority black county, one of few in the state of Texas.  On a good day, along the side of the local highway (recently made famous by Gatlin Jeter and his runaway SUV) you can catch the Hip-Hop Trail-Riders in full western wear (cowboy boots and 10 gallon hats included) blaring Lil' Wayne from boomboxes tied to their horses' haunches.  Oh yeah, It's also home to death row.

 The record summer drought brought at least one bright spot: a beach on the lake! 

Ancient pre-lake stump and fishing line.
 Capitalism and Christianity have never looked so wrong together.

 When the real thing is too damn expensive: brick print tin siding. 


  1. Wow....thanks for taking me back home.

  2. I see dead people...

  3. Central Texas must breed porn stars. I got to chat with Steven Daigle once about his time at Sam Houston state. And at least one fellow Brazos county-er from my high school ended up on Sean Cody...

  4. Actually the photos all have a sort of creepy, nightmarish quality to them.... A sharp contrast to the tidy, verdant New England country side that I know.... frightening!!!!

  5. This is one of your more hilarious posts.