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11141″01 , r k 4 4%._ 4441 I 1 I , .”70,4″ la, 7 AZ MP \( f4 t C *TA /11.. 2-31 *or -DALLAS Unless memory fails, there are only two really glamorous and unreservedly chic things that Famous Arthurs are always trying to do. One of them is they are always trying to go home again. The second thing concerns repeated attempts of Famous Arthurs, down through history and a lot of other odd places, to eat regularly. I am not a Famous Arthur, of course. But it is pretty to think so now and againand it was on just one of these madcap occasions not so long ago \(when I was saying the hell with everything and kind of balling it up and wearing funny hats and surrendering completely to my fango on home again. My motives in this connection were pretty complicated; some of them even vaguely Freudian if you happen to dig that sort of thing. But the really compelling reason for going home again was that I suddenly became very, very hungry. I remembered that home was one of those charming old-fashioned places where one could go and have a whole bunch of food shoved into one’s mouth \(I am alluding here of course to the kind of food Mothers reportedly used to make, the kind wildly popular in the old days for purposes of staying alive and not to be confused with various modern stopgap fetishes such as frozen pizza or Shiner Beer or So I came on home again, all steamed up with notions of literary greatness and feeling more than a little hungry. All of which may explain why a number of weeks elapsed before I finally remembered \(still googly-eyed and abstracted, stoked to 6 The Texas Observer the nosewhales with red beans and a certain profoundly disturbing truth about our old home. It came back to me in a queasy flash of nostalgiaour home is now and always has been situated in a city by the name of Dallas. HOW TO DESCRIBE my turbulent emotions of this period? You could have knocked me over with a tureen of H.L.H. petits fours. The wonder is that I survived at all. It rather takes one back \(it has in fact self plunged into the enigma that passes for modern life and thought in Dallas. One ultimately forgets, for example, how Dallas reached its full urban flowering under such decisive cultural influences as Daniel Drew . . . John Wilkes Booth . . . the Everly Brothers . . . Father Coughlin . . . and the Wooly Mammoth. But it is perhaps the spooked fate of all pure esthetes and terminalstage masochists like myself to discoveroften too late in lifethat one has drifted irrevocably too far from the mainstream of things. I realize now I am pitifully out of touch. I am suffering from what is known today as “alienation” \(a term instantly familiar to students of KierI had never, for example, bestirred myself to participate in any of the city’s wide-ranging cultural activities \(just the other day I slept straight through an impressive organized mob of demonstrators protesting a local Nor have I managed to stay remotely well-informed on political matters. There were these funny elections last month, you see, in which nearly every candidate that won was called a “Republican” \(possibly some sort of new code label for IBM data campaigned ceaselessly on an issue they characterized as “the Austin-toBoston Liberal Axis.” My own abysmal ignoran6e in this area suggests that perhaps I have not been sufficiently exposed to direct sunlight for some weeks. Though it is reassuring to think of our new “Republican” legislators bombing off to Austin next month to clean up that mess of the Liberal Axis in the State House. To these reformers, I say “Godspeed” \(which is another new thing I have learned about in Dallas and which I intend to use a whole lot WE HAVE COME, finally, to realize that in this man’s Dallas it isn’t enough to stand up and proclaim one’s monumental witless ignorance and old guiltnot ‘even enough to sign loyalty cv.ths or turn oneself over to the F.B.I. for periodic grilling and chest X-ray. These things help, of course, but they don’t cut the mustard. This is because Dallas is still a Can-Do, Wheeler-Dealer kind of city, where a man with vision and determination and a good line of credit can make a bunch of money and wear Countess Mara cowboy boots and get all vomity drunk at Cotton Bowl games and talk like Daddy Warbucks. Provided, as we said, he’s got the stuff it takes. A good many of the citizens hereabouts do indeed have that stuff. I see these savage, self-made enterprisers all over town, building their own post offices, dredging ‘the Trinity River, dropping coins into fountains and first-class pay toilets, underwriting the crash-program development of their own nuclear weapons. I believe, in all modesty, that I possess that kind of stuff, too. Perhaps not in such abundance as to transform me into 27 1/2-percent Petroleum Jelly or a Greasy Kid Stuff king but enough, surely, to hoist me up from the mediocrity of my days and plop me down again in the best Dallas salons and oyster bars. I’m not so much bent on great wealth as on greatnesswinning the respect and high station denied me all these years in the city of my birth. My plan is to become a Famous Playwright \(a refinement on the Faof decent, instantly comprehensible playletsall of them with these ter