Virginia Opossum Joeys (Didelphis virginiana) stands a top a log.The animal is small and lanky.

Strangest State: Hello Possum, Goodbye Fish

Sharing the latest dispatches from far-flung Texas.


A version of this story ran in the January / February 2024 issue.

A cartoon illustration of Molly Ivins says, “Howdy, y’all. Texas sure can be the Strangest State. Let’s see what happened since our last issue.”

A possum in a football uniform goes for a long pass. “In Lubbock, an opossum crashed a college football game and became a social media star.

A fish is carefully laid out in a coffin, surrounded by flowers. “Down in San Marcos, the Fish and Wildlife declared 21 species extinct, happy trails to the Gambusia—a small, striped fish that once flourished in the headwaters of the San Marcos river.”

A man holds up the state of Texas, while the rest of the US map is represented behind him. “Over in Waco, about 100 people gathered for the first conference of the Texas Nationalist Movement, which since 2005 has been advocating for ‘Texit.’”

A pile of papers and folders is stacked high, in front of someone’s identity document. “Out East in Livingston, officials quietly announced that Syed Rabbon’s death sentence had been commuted to life. But the unusual reversal came after an even more unusual delay: Rabban’s appeal, filed in 1994, had been pending for nearly 30 years.”

The last panel returns to the smiling Molly Ivins in a blue blouse. “Well folks, that’s some strange news isn’t it? If you see something happening around town, give us a shout!”