Is It OK to Wear My Late Uncle’s Giraffe-Skin Cowboy Boots?

Q: My uncle recently passed away, and he left me his entire collection of cowboy boots, some of which are exotic. Most notable are the elephant and giraffe. I was told by my cousin that he was also planning to purchase a pair of boots made out of hippo. What I want to know is […]

CowBurners BBQ & Taproom Brings ‘Rib Candy’ and Craft Beer to Mineola

Jason Herring left Mineola after high school to make a life outside his hometown. He tried his hand at the insurance business, worked in a Cargill slaughterhouse, and ran smokers that could hold 2,400 pounds of meat at a ConAgra processing facility. “We had four of them rolling 24 hours a day,” he told me. […]

Britt Daniel on Songs That Didn’t Make the Cut

n March 17, 1994, Beck and Johnny Cash played a legendary SXSW showcase at the old Emo’s Austin on Red River. That same night, a few doors down, a nascent Austin band named Spoon were onstage at the drag bar and punk rock venue The Blue Flamingo, also making history. I was there. So was Gerard […]

For Want of a Nail

Dolby Smith is a farrier, a shoer of horses. Accompanied by his wife, Jess, who is also his assistant, he circuits far West Texas every four to six weeks, trimming hooves and nailing shoes onto his clients’ horses, ponies, mules, and donkeys. “When I was fourteen, I started working with farriers to see if I […]

The Path to World Domination

About a century ago, in central Louisiana, in the town of Harrisonburg, the seat of Catahoula Parish, Arch and Mae Aplin opened a general mercantile store. The Aplins sold everything—dried goods and leather shoes, medicine and cotton shirts, cuts of beef and hammers and nails—and their store was successful, in large part because of its location. […]

How McAllen’s New Festival Could Change the Valley’s Music Scene

On most evenings, the only souls strolling around McAllen’s Oval Park are couples on dates. It’s so quiet, you can hear the distant waterfall in front of the Convention Center—located a football field away. But over five days in late July, the throttling rhythms of indie rock, cumbia, heavy post-progressive rock, hip-hop, and neo-soul flitted […]