Six Thoughts From A Week In Houston; The 64 Ounce Mega Gulp Of American Cities » VSB

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Six Thoughts From A Week In Houston; The 64 Ounce Mega Gulp Of American Cities

The members of the bachelor party who hooped. That’s me in the back with the purple tank. I’m mostly obscured because I’m a grown-ass man who still doesn’t know how to take pictures. (Damon Young)

 

As I boarded my flight to Houston last week — stuck in an aisle seat on a two and a half hour long flight (Which would likely leave me unable to do what I always do on planes: Sleep.) — I hoped that, at the very least, my neighbor would be a smaller person. Preferably a woman. Because if I had to be awake the entire time, I wanted my tiny bit of seat space to be unencumbered.

But of course, God had other plans. And saw fit to place me right next to a man who was (at least) 6’6 and (at least) 350 pounds. Which, considering the ridiculously tiny size of the seats, meant I practically had to sit on his lap. Drats.

Fortunately, I did manage to get to sleep, and didn’t wake up until I was woken up by the pilot to let us know we were 30 minutes away from Houston. At this point, the man sitting next to me had to use the restroom, so he asked if I could get up so he could get up. He came back a few minutes later, and when he sat down we started talking.

“So, coming back home?”

“Oh no. This is actually my first time in Houston. You?”

“Yea, this is home for me. What brings you here?”

“Bachelor party.”

(His eyes light up)

“Oh! So I have a lot to tell you!”

For the next 10 minutes he tells me about where to go (the Galleria and a few other spots) and what events to attend (there apparently was a motorcycle festival taking place somewhere). Although I knew much of this already, it was helpful information, and I was thankful for it.

And then the conversation took the awkwardest left turn to ever left turn.

“Also, I should warn you that everyone carries a gun in Texas.”

“Really?”

“Yup. That’s why everyone is so dang on polite. You never know who’s carrying.”

“Ha.”

“Women too. They make up half of the concealed carry permits in this state.”

“Really?”

Now, when I tell these types of stories, I have a tendency to embellish, congeal, and paraphrase conversations. Mostly because I don’t remember exactly what was said, so I just try to capture the spirit of it the best I can. What you’re about to read, however, is exactly what he said. Word for word. You will be tempted not to believe me. But trust me, this is exactly what he said. And I know this because it stuck in my brain. And will likely stick in my brain forever

Yea. That’s probably why our rape rates are so low. If you and your boys plan to do any raping, Houston aint the place for that. Because you’ll get shot here.

To recap, I sat on a plane for three hours with JJ Watt’s 50-year-old doppelganger; an exceedingly polite, mannerly, and considerate man who gave me very helpful tips on how to navigate the city before sharing that the best way to survive Houston would be to leave all the raping back up North.

We landed moments later. I don’t think I’ve ever jumped out of a seat and off of a plane quicker.

Now, as I mentioned in the conversation with NotJJWatt, I was in town for a bachelor party. So why was I there for a week? (Five days, actually.) Well, weeks earlier, an administrator from the University of Houston invited me to come to campus to speak. And we were able to arrange it so that I’d be there for the party Friday through Sunday, hang out in Houston Labor Day, and speak on campus Tuesday afternoon.

Obviously, I wasn’t able to see the entire city in five days. But I saw a lot. Enough that I’d come to realize that this flight and this conversation would be a perfect preview and synopsis of my time in Houston; a place that’s unfailingly polite, unusually (and disturbingly) honest and blunt, engaging, educational, and waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too fucking big.

1. Let’s just start with the one immutable truth about this city. It’s too fucking big. Think of all the shit you can think of that’s just too fucking big. The 707 hp Dodge Hellcat. The Cheesecake Factory menu. Jay Electronica’s list of excuses for not dropping an album. Houston surpasses them all in its way-too-fucking-bigness. Before you visit the city, people who’ve visited or lived there before prepare you for the weather (tropical), the mosquitoes (everywhere), the food (amazing), and the people (very kind and very likely to cut you if you cross them). And each lived up to the expectations. It was in the mid 90s every day, with a humidity that vacillated from “Are you fucking kidding me?” to “My spleen was replaced with a bucket of sweat.” But, I actually love hot and humid weather, so that didn’t bother me. I saw nan mosquitoes. The people were very nice. I left Houston unstabbed. And, as far as the food goes, let’s just say that I left for Houston weighing 195 pounds and returned at 201.

But no one told me that every single fucking thing takes a 40 minute drive. And that there are like 18 downtowns. And that if you tell someone you’re planning to walk somewhere, they look at you with the most bless-your-stupid-little-heart-est face they can muster. And that you could be on the road for 30 minutes — on the highway going 70 mph — and still not even be halfway to where you’re going. And still be in the same damn city. For those who haven’t been to Houston and think I’m exaggerating, the facts back me up. Outside of cities in Alaska (which doesn’t count) and Montana (which doesn’t matter), it’s the third largest American city. Only Jacksonville and Oklahoma City possess more square miles.

I tweeted that line about Houston being “the only place in America you can drive for a hour in no traffic and still not be where you’re going” last weekend. And a few New Yorkers did what New Yorkers tend to do: be assholes and assume that “The City” is better and bigger than everywhere else. Well, asshole New Yorkers, Houston shits on you. It is 599.6 square miles. New York City is 302.6. That’s practically twice as big. It can fit each of your bitch-ass boroughs and bodegas in it and still add Chicago and still have enough room for Pittsburgh. Suck on it, New York!

Anyway, Houston is too damn big.

2. The size of the city should have been a logistical nightmare for the bachelor party, which was 18 (!!!) people deep. But the guy tasked with organizing everything made things much smoother. Well, as smooth as things can be with 18 grown-ass men on vacation from their wives, families, and jobs in a Mutombo-sized fucking city that happens to be the low-key day party and strip club capital of the country.

Plus, a shitload of people were in town for the OU (University of Oklahoma) and UofH (University of Houston) game. And Drake’s ass (more on him later) was there too. Which meant people were in town for his concert.

So yea, it should have been a logistical nightmare, but it wasn’t. We ate like death row inmates, where every meal was the last meal. The crab cake benedict at Lucille’s made me want to open-hand back smack the cook, and I want to move everything from Mama’s Oven — including Mama herself — to Pittsburgh. It was there that I had a smothered turkey wing and drowned porkchop that both made me reevaluate every decision I’ve made in my life that prevented me from experiencing Mama’s Oven until 2016.

We day partied and night partied; hitting Social Junkie and Prospect Park and creating the always hilarious social dynamic/experiment of what happens when 18 niggas jump out of vans and enter the club at the same time.

A) Everyone stops what they’re doing and pays attention to you

B) Then, assuming that at least one person in the group must be famous, they scan the group for the famous niggas

C) But then, after seeing nan famous niggas, they go back to what they were doing

We played basketball Sunday morning. At NASA.

Basketball. At NASA.

Basketball. At NASA. (Damon Young)

And, because the bachelor we celebrated is a very civic-minded individual, we volunteered, spending 8am to 12pm Saturday morning at a food bank. Which was a great way to do a social good and reconcile yourself with the debauchery that would occur later. (It’s not, however, a great way to nurse a hangover.)

food-bank

And, of course, since this was Houston, gentleman’s clubs were prominetly involved.

3. Now, if I said everything I could say about our strip club experience(s), I’d have to go back and redact 90 percent of it. But even in that 10 percent, there’s much to say. Starting with the fact that I generally hate strip clubs. Actually, “hate” is too strong of a word. “Eh” is much better. I just never was particularly enthused by the idea of paying women to dance with me. Even if those women happen to be mostly naked, very athletic, and named after my favorite alcoholic beverages. And before last weekend, I hadn’t been to one in over a decade.

But I had also never been to one in Houston. Which possesses more beautiful Black women than any city I’ve ever been to. DC, New York, Miami, LA, Chicago, Toronto — you name the city, and it’s second place to Houston. There, you won’t just see beautiful Black women in the club. You’ll see beautiful Black women driving the Uber you’re in on the way to the club. Naturally, the stripper population is mined from this insane pool in a city where you’ll randomly find King Magazine model-esque Black women shopping at and working in CVS.

So, when you add the level of, um, talent there, plus the fact that they’re the only thing open past 2am, plus the fact that in Houston, “strip clubs” are basically just “regular clubs that also happen to have naked women walking around and one dollar bills flying like confetti,” you can end up there three nights in a row. And by “there” I mean “either at VLive, Dreams, or Onyx “– the Jordan, Magic, and Bird of Houston strip clubs.

And when you’re there three nights in a row with the type of crew that would do volunteer work at a freakin bachelor party, the conversations with your boys evolve past a point of “Holy shit!” and “Damn!” and “Call my wife, and tell her I’m not coming back home.” We discussed and debated whether stripping was a feminist act (it is) and if attending a strip club was a feminist act (not sure). I also was involved in a conversation that deconstructed the economic ecosystem of the club, outlining the supply chain economics at work, and comparing the intra-club stripper hierarchy — and the roles assigned to each level of the hierarchy — to the dynamic existing at any other workplace where revenue depends on talent.

And I’m 99 percent sure these conversations happened because I also drank a lot of Hennessy and smoked a lot of hooka. And by “hooka” I mean “hooka and another substance that I never partake in and won’t name but did last weekend because fuck it.”

4. Drake and Future were there for the Summer Sixteen tour. Which meant that much of our weekend was planned around Drake. Basically, where ever he was rumored to be, that’s where we didn’t want to be.

Also, people from Houston reading this, please answer this for me: What the fuck is up with Drake and your city? Are you as annoyed that he considers himself a Houstonian as I am? It feels like Houston and Drake have the same relationship Rihanna and Drake do. He loves Houston like a fat kid loves cake. And Houston is like “Drake is really, really, really…nice.”

5. I know Houston has police officers. And I’m aware that I didn’t spend much (or any) time in the hood, where police officers tend to be. But I was there for five days, and I did not see a cop the entire time. Not a cop car, not a cop walking, not a cop riding a bike. You can’t go three minutes in Pittsburgh (or New York or D.C. or Philly or Boston or any other Mid-Atlantic city) without running into a cop, so perhaps I’m just used to that dynamic. But apparently Houston is so big and hot that even the police are like “Fuck it, I’m staying in the station.”

6. My last couple days in Houston were much more subdued. Everyone from the party (except the actual bachelor and I) left town either Sunday night or Monday morning, so I had time to meet up with my sister and my niece on Labor Day. (Yes. I have siblings in Houston. I’m Black, remember? 50 percent of us have siblings in 30% of major American cities.)

Brother/Sister flow in the H

Brother/Sister flow in the H (Damon Young)

Tuesday, I spent the entire morning and early afternoon on the University of Houston’s campus to do some on-camera/pre-interview stuff before my talk. And then my talk started at noon. Bit of background: I was invited there by Dr. Temple Northup from their Valenti School of Communication, who asked me to talk about my career as a writer as well as some of today’s most relevant racial/political issues. Instead of a straight lecture, it was a Q&A with a student on stage for the first half, and then a Q&A with the audience for the second half. I can never tell how I do at these types of things — aside from laugher, it’s hard to gauge the audience’s interest level when you’re on stage with a spotlight shining in your eye — but the feedback I received afterwards leads me to believe I did a good job. (Yay me.)

crr-iysvmaa5hz2

Also, a person in the audience (Hi Julia!) approached the mic and read her favorite passage of mine to me, which has never happened before. (And kinda made me blush because A) what a compliment! and B) I write some ridiculous shit sometimes and the passage she chose was particularly ridiculous and hearing it aloud and in front of 250 people is the ridiculousest.)

This decision is a major blow to 2002 Chevrolet Cavalier-ass White people who wish to be treated like Maseratis. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with being a White person. (Hi White people reading this!) Or even being an average White person. Most people — Black, White, Kappa, etc — are average people. Because math. But there is something particularly and specifically American wrong with reflexively assuming that the reason why your second Wednesday in March-ass ass was passed over was because you happen to be a White woman. And then being so hurt by this fabricated wrong that you take your regifted bottle of three-year-old Almaden Heritage-ass ass to the Supreme Court.

I also got a chance to meet the amazing Josie Pickens, who teaches at TSU (which is apparently very close by).

In summary, Houston was too hot, too big, too spread out, and too randomly into Dodge Challengers. (I swear I saw more of them last weekend than I have my entire life.) I also had a great time, and will definitely come back. Just hopefully without NotJJWatt and with more one dollar bills.

Damon Young

Damon Young is the editor-in-chief of VSB. He is also a columnist for GQ.com And he's working on a book of essays to be published by Ecco (HarperCollins). Damon is busy. He lives in Pittsburgh, and he really likes pancakes. Reach him at damon@verysmartbrothas.com. Or don't. Whatever.

  • MsCee

    Whew, just when I was about to do actual work!

    • TeeChantel

      Multitask, multitask.

    • Valerie

      “Second best” lol

      • Yay Radley

        Exactly. They know. They just like to act like they don’t know.

        • Valerie

          LOL

    • miss t-lee

      I’ve always loved the Houston v. Dallas beef.
      I sit back and laugh because I have no horse in that race.

      • BUT YOU’RE ALL TEXANS! You’re all alike right? Everyone looks at you as the same! ;-)

        • Valerie

          I’ve never been to Dallas but I know we are not the same. Kidding, kidding lol
          I don’t really get the beef either. Maybe it’s because of the football teams?

          • both cities are arrogant and think they’re better than the other. Im a Houstonian, but I love Dallas much more.

            • Valerie

              What is there to do in Dallas? No shade.

              • miss t-lee

                LMAO
                When I go see my brother up there I pretty much shop…lol

                • Valerie

                  Lol that’s it?

                  • miss t-lee

                    They live in the suburb on the outskirts.
                    I was up there earlier in the summer for a graduation, had fun kickin’ it with the fam, but didn’t do much else.
                    Maybe next trip.

              • MsCee

                Enjoy not being in Houston..duh lol.

                • Valerie

                  GIRL…this shade LOL

                  • MsCee

                    I kid I kid lol… Houston has its perks.

              • FarbissinaPunim

                Same stuff you do in Houston.

              • MsSula

                QTNA.

            • FarbissinaPunim

              I’m a Dallasite but Houston’s blackness is so much better.

          • I’m actually poking fun of people who say that everyone in NYC and the greater area is alike. People can see the difference between two cities that are hundreds of miles apart, but if they’re effectively next to each other, well…I get blamed for some ish some cat from Harlem did in 2008 every time I travel outside of Route 287.

            • Valerie

              Now that’s funny and I bet annoying.

              • The upshot is that people seem to have trouble understanding the concept of Queens outside of the area. Like no, I don’t know your cousin in Harlem. In fact, I’d probably need a GPS to go over there since I haven’t been that way in years. LOL

                • Valerie

                  LOL!!!!! I’ve always wanted to visit New York especially in the winter. Since I’m from Houston we don’t really experience snow.

                  • If you make the trip, hang with someone who is both from here and knows the city. You’ll end up in some cool spots. Plus the Black community here is insanely diverse.

                    • Miss NYC terrible sometime. Can’t get good jerk chicken in Little Rock. What area did you live in?

                    • I’m from there. Hollis, Queens to be precise. And considering that my 9 to 5 is in the heart of the West Indian part of Brooklyn, I can’t swing a dead cat without hitting a jerk pan.

                    • Heart of West Indian Brooklyn? Canarsie or Flatbush?

                    • Flatbush. East Flatbush if you have to be particular. I had to get a flat repaired by the job last week, and was shocked that the dude was from South Carolina. I thought I had lost my hearing. LOL

                    • Hahahaha, that’s crazy. I spent some of my youth in Brooklyn- did a bid in Farragut Houses near the Navy Yard.

                    • LadyJay?

                      McBeans all day erryday.

                    • Maestro G

                      Originally from CT, still got fam there, Pops lived in Flatbush for a good while (Avenue L), been in Houston for a long while, though. Northern born, Southern bred.

                    • Valerie

                      Cool thank you.

        • miss t-lee

          No we’re not all alike.
          Now, if you try to talk sh*t about any of us, it’s on.
          However, the big cities will always have a friendly rivalry.
          Basically we’re like family.
          You talk sh*t about one of us, you have to fight all of us.

        • Jennifer

          Todd, baby. It’s okay. Get outta your feelings.

        • MsCee

          Question: Can’t we all just get along?
          Answer:Haylenahhhhhh

          • miss t-lee

            This made me laugh…loudly.

        • Yay Radley

          Um, NO. As a Houstonian, I’m highkey offended that you think we talk like Dallas..ians? (I don’t know what they call themselves. I usually identify them by the jheri curls or incessant calling out of OAK CLIFF TEXAS, as if it were a city unto itself.) Anyhoo, nawl.

          • Digital_Underground

            I find Houstonians have more of a “twang” while the folks up in Big D have more of a drawl.

      • Mrs_Music

        DallASS could NEVER ?

        • miss t-lee

          HAHAHA.

      • MsSula

        You know in your heart of hearts that Houston is by far…. by far… the better city. Lol.

        • miss t-lee

          Hahaha.
          I will not confirm nor deny…

    • Jennifer

      “I’m Dallas all day BUT at least you got to experience the second best city in the great state of Texas!”

      Dallas people can’t be trusted.

      • MsCee

        Pulls out blade…prepares to cut a bih for putting no respek on my city’s name!!! Lol

        • Jennifer

          Listen, I come from a line of sweet ol’ God-fearin’ black women who have carry permits. You don’t want none of this.

      • Kas

        They are very suspect.

    • RaeRae

      Our sprite is purple, not dirty.

      • MsCee

        Lol, in honor of the Pimp, I stand corrected.

        • RaeRae

          The Trill Delegation appreciates you

  • wayment… yall was in my city and didnt say nothing…. HMPH :-(

    **goes to read article

    • UnsungWoman

      Right! The SAME thing I was thinking!

  • TeeChantel

    Damoan, I almost didn’t recognize you without a “I love BBGs” shirt on!
    Also, did you go to Breakfast Klub. You can’t go to Houston w/o stopping at The Breakfast Klub.

    • miss t-lee

      I knew something was different…lol

    • Damon Young

      what’s the breakfast klub?

      • Jennifer

        Breakfast/Brunch spot. Food is so good. I always send out-of-towners there whenever they ask me where to eat.

        • miss t-lee

          I’ve always been deterred by that line.
          I still wanna go, though!

      • Mrs_Music

        Only the best breakfast spot in the nation. There’s always next time! Wangs, French toast/waffles/pancakes, grits (that you don’t have to season) & the potatoes…bruh ???

      • charisma_supreme

        The food is great, but that line on a Saturday in the heat will have your crotch sweating…. HARD.

      • RaeRae

        “what’s the breakfast klub?”
        **clutches pearls**

      • Cookie

        What is THE Breakfast Klub?!?!?! I’d like to have died thinking of a world without both it and Whataburger….Do better Damon go stand in line at The Breakfast Klub and thank us later

        • BonnieLovesNola

          I moved to Texas a year ago. First time I’d ever heard of Whataburger…and I think it’s horrible. Sorry…

      • Nature

        Noooooooo! Nobody took y’all to Breakfast Klub?! Tear!!!! Do it next time and be early so you don’t have a long wait. By early I mean before they open.

    • JennyJazzhands

      Yes! Me and my bestie went the morning after the OTR concert hoping to run into the carters. They went the next day :( but that french toast though!

  • miss t-lee

    Yeah…we’re not gonna do Texas slander today, that definitely what we’re not gonna do. Texas is a driving state, which means…sh*t is spread out no matter where you go.
    Not JJWatt wasn’t playing about the guns. We love our guns. CHL soon come.
    You ate at Mama’s Oven? You were brave. Did you get ice cream at Hank’s?
    I’m not from Houston, but Drake clearly wants to be down, and since he’s homeboy’s with J. Prince’s son–it just kinda happened. I don’t exactly accept it, but hey.
    I used to date a dude that was an Onyx “steak and shake” Tuesday regular. I let him make it, hey it’s Onyx.
    My sister went to TSU!!! Hey!
    Had no idea your sis lived in the H.
    As I told you on twitter, most folks don’t traverse the length of city everytime they get in the car, but hey…you’re an amateur. Yeen know all that.

    • Valerie

      I don’t accept Drake’s presence either. That is one thing about Houston most people don’t care about the drive.

      I had no idea you lived here. Then again, I’m a lurker lol.

      • miss t-lee

        I live in Austin. However, my besties and my sister live in the H, so I’m there a couple times a year.

        • Valerie

          Thank you for the clarification. I’ve always thought about moving to Austin lol

          • save all your coins if you do…the cost of living is ridic

            • Valerie

              On that note, I’ve lived here all my life why leave now lol!

            • miss t-lee

              COL isn’t bad if you don’t wanna live downtown, and don’t mind living further out.

          • miss t-lee

            It’s cool. Much smaller and quieter than the H.

        • Epsilonicus

          Austin is one of the few places in the South I would live.

          • miss t-lee

            It’s aight…lol

            • Epsilonicus

              I need to find a place in the South where I dont have to drive everywhere. The weather doesnt bother me too much I just need public transit options

              • miss t-lee

                Good luck with that.
                We don’t really do public transit well. See my above point about driving everywhere.

              • MsSula

                Texans have a 1 horse/1 man mentality. Public transit is def not for them.

            • Brooklyn_Bruin

              I never found Austin to be very black friendly, not like Houston or Dallas.

              I like the town well enough, but I’m more Donald Glover than Donald Goines.

              • miss t-lee

                There isn’t a lot of Black folks. It is Black friendly, but our population is nowhere near the larger cities.
                I grew up in a town with less than Austin, so it has never bothered me, but for folks who are used to more population I understand why they feel the way they do.

              • PinkRose

                It’s not, but it’s a nice place!

              • Valerie

                I’ve heard this too

    • Damon Young

      what’s wrong with mama’s oven? (and no hank’s)

      • miss t-lee

        Some family got food poisoning there once, so I’ve never been.
        Definitely should’ve checked out Hank’s.

        Been to This Is It many times though…and loved it.

  • RaeNBow

    – *blessyourheartest* haha
    – …hmmm, forgot Montana was a place.
    – yes, and yes, both working in and patronizing a strip club are feminist acts
    – Oh, Drake. SMH.

    i feel like i now want to visit Houston. Their tourism bureau should cut you a check

    • Damon Young

      yes, and yes, both working in and patronizing a strip club are feminist acts

      i’d publish a piece on this on vsb. wouldn’t write it, though

  • Trill Mickelson

    Wayment, I just went to Chicago for the first time like a month ago, and you’re now telling me that there’s a city with more beautiful Black women than Chicago? *vaults Houston to the top of my vacation list*

    • Damon Young

      yes. that is what i’m telling you.

    • RaeRae

      But your name is Trill… Surely you’ve been here before??!?!!?!?! ;-)

    • Wise Old Owl

      Please, very familiar with both cites and have equal love for both…however, it is no contest or comparison between the Beautiful Black Women in H-Town to the Black Women in Chi Town…Houston has by far the most Gorgeous Sisters on this Planet…and more Importantly, they are the most Nicest, Friendliness, Intelligent, Hardworking and Hard Loving Sisters that I ever Encountered!

      • MsSula

        Houston does have an insane amount of beautiful, laid back, super smart black women. And they are friendly AND nice too.

  • Leggy

    I love Houston. I live here and it’s an engineer’s dream and I moved here after college for a job opportunity and for the huge Nigerian population but also there’s nothing in Houston. Absolutely nothing. If you’re coming to Houston to see things there’s nothing here but office buildings. Only come to Houston if you know someone here.
    I love the prospect park at fountain view because it has Nigerian night on Wednesdays and it’s LIT!!

    • miss t-lee

      How is there nothing in Houston? I’m confused.

      • Leggy

        There are no tourist attractions imo apart from nasa. It’s not a tourist city at all. It’s a “I have a friend there so I’m going there to turn up” city not a “that’s such a beautiful city and bucket list material” city.

        • miss t-lee

          You guys have hella musuems, parks and fun stuff to do. Professional sports, Hermann, the Zoo, Nightlife.
          I’ve been coming to visit for like 30 years, we’ve never run out of stuff to do.

          • Leggy

            Nightlife, zoos and mediocre parks and museums isn’t tourist reason enough to visit a city. Houston is not a city to see Imo. It’s fine that others like you think different.

            • miss t-lee

              Ok.

            • miss t-lee

              What do you as a tourist when you visit a city?

              • Epsilonicus

                Nightlife, zoos and mediocre parks and museums lol

                • miss t-lee

                  That was a real question.
                  Maybe I do tourism wrong, so I need to know.

                  • Epsilonicus

                    I was thinking the same thing. I go see architecture, parks, zoos, museums, restaurants. The usual

                    • miss t-lee

                      *daps*

                    • Jennifer

                      Houston is tough when it comes to architecture. We love to tear something old down and build an ugly new thing to replace it.

                    • Be thankful. I live in the alternative in New York. Nope.

                    • Jennifer

                      I like old stuff though.

                    • Agreed, but I’ve seen Landmarking law abuse here. Then again, pretty much every law in the city for the “public good” gets abused for one hustle or another. Like random a$$ houses blocked because they don’t want new people in the neighborhood. Grrr…

                • miss t-lee

                  *cackling*

              • Leggy

                I want to see things that make that city unique. There are zoos and museums and parks in every city, doesn’t mean I have every city on my bucket list. Nothing makes Houston unique at all. There’s literally nothing I can think of that’s like a Houston thing. Even their food is borrowed from Louisiana. See, I love Houston and I live here but it’s not a city to see imho.
                Ive been to almost all the major cities in America and there’s always something people tell you to try or see. Going to Maine? Make sure you eat the lobster roll? California? See all the Hollywood stuff? Newyork? Statue of Liberty, the met, Broadway. What is houston’s “thing”?

                • miss t-lee

                  There’s plenty of stuff that makes Houston, Houston.
                  But…I don’t think I can figure this out for you…lol

                • Jennifer

                  What makes Houston Houston is all of the people from all over the world who made the place their home. I love the mashup of Mexican, Black-American, Vietnamese, Nigerian, Persian and other cultures that are there. You end up with interesting fusion. That’s special.

                  …and our BBQ and Tex-Mex is not borrowed from Louisiana. Besides, a lot of Louisiana’s food is a mashup of French, Caribbean, and African cuisine. I don’t know what you’re looking for, player.

                  Now let me get out of my feelings and go home. lol

                  • Leggy

                    Lmao. see. I live here! I love it here. I’m not trying to diss Houston but nahhh, not a tourist city at all.

                    • RaeRae

                      Ohhhh…okay, now I’m with you. Tourist stuff…Yeah…well, I guess it depends on the tourist. LOL!

                • Valerie

                  You kinda have a point. It’s like after I visit the museums…now what? I never thought about it this way

                  • Kas

                    Don’t let that salty Nigerian bust your bubble, even if I agree with her.

                    • Valerie

                      Hilarious.

                • RaeRae

                  Tex-Mex borrowed from Louisiana? Okay.

                • MsSula

                  You probably need to experience the city for itself and not try to replicate experience from a different city.

                  Lots of things are Houston-specific, but it is not seen by the naked eye. You have to go beyond.

        • Giovanna James

          I live in Dallas. Same. Unless you wanna see where JFK got shot.

          • Leggy

            I hate Dallas. It always looks and feels like such an unfinished city to me. Like someone started building it, ran out of money, shrugged and said “good enough”.

            • Kas

              I’ll take Houston over Dallas any day of the week.

      • Crawford

        There’s plenty of stuff to do in Houston. There are symphones, art museums, the Buffalo Soldiers Museum is there, etc.
        Granted, my family and I love museums and actively seek them out whereever we go. (Not to mention we’re a tad bougie.)

        • Valerie

          I have a special type of love for the Buffalo Soldiers Museum. I worked there when I was in middle school. Thanks for mentioning it.

          • miss t-lee

            That’s one of the spots I keep missing. Definitely gotta do that next trip.

            • Crawford

              It’s on the smaller side, but it’s packed with history and celebrates black people in the military both past and present. It’s where I learned that a woman dressed up as a Buffalo soldier.

              • miss t-lee

                See. I didn’t even know about the women.
                We have a re-enactment group that visits my church everywhere. They bring lots of artifacts, uniforms, and do a meal on the chuck wagon. It’s always pretty cool.
                Definitely gotta come see the museum.

            • Valerie

              You must. Lots of history there.

              • miss t-lee

                It’s on the list!

            • Maestro G

              Go to the Shrine of the Black Madonna as well if you get a chance.

              • miss t-lee

                *added.

      • Brooklyn_Bruin

        When people came to town, Johnson Space Center, and eating. Not much else.

        • miss t-lee

          This sounds boring as heyll.
          Someone even tries to take me to NASA and it’s hands.

          • Brooklyn_Bruin

            I’d take folks to the rodeo if I could.

            • miss t-lee

              The rodeo would be fun.
              Much bigger than the one Austin does.

    • Valerie

      I always recommend the Art/Theatre District to people.

      I don’t think I’ll ever be convinced to go back to Prospect Park. It’s up there in my avoid places just like Warehouse Live.

      • Leggy

        You have to go on Wednesday night! Seriously! Nigerian music and suya! The best!

        • Valerie

          I work late on Wednesdays :( Forgive me but what is suya?

          • Leggy

            It’s a Nigerian street food. It’s roasted meat and some kind of groundnut pepper.

            • Valerie

              Sounds good.

    • Negro Libre

      You hear about the huge medicare fraud bust in Houston a couple years ago?

    • PinkRose

      Nigerians RUN Houston IMHO.

    • Damon Young

      I love the prospect park at fountain view because it has Nigerian night on Wednesdays and it’s LIT!!

      I did hear that the city has a huge nigerian population

    • Jennifer

      Who is your tour guide? They are doing an awful job. Absolutely nothing?

      • Leggy

        Well make a suggestion. What is there to see in Houston as a tourist?

        • Jennifer

          Space Center Houston, Aquarium, Natural Science Museum, Holocaust Museum, Children’s Museum, Project Row House, Kemah Board Walk, Miller Outdoor theater…and all of the other theaters, Zoo, baseball, football, basketball, soccer, hockey, minor league sports, Kemah boardwalk, Orange Show, Discovery Green, San Jacinto Monument, Battleship Texas. Tourists can eat, right? You know we got tons of food. It’s 30-45 minutes from the Gulf of Mexico, so beaches and ish.

          This is just off the top of my head. Tourists have tons of options.

          I ask again, what have you been doing there?

          • miss t-lee

            I love Miller Outdoor :)

          • PinkRose

            Don’t forget the zillion homelessly folks, Houston is the WORST city I’ve ever seen in that regard. And it makes “enjoying” the city almost impossible, the shopping is on point though!

            • Jennifer

              See, I deal with more homeless folks in DC than Houston. But, that’s because I walk everywhere around here. In Houston, I’m just parking and walking up to my next destination.

              • PinkRose

                I was just in DC a d used to live there, and I can’t believe how BAD the homeless problem is now! Seeing rats as big as cats in the Metro sealed the deal for me being happy NOT to live there anymore!

          • PinkRose

            Plus it’s too hot from May-Sept to enjoy ANY outdoor activity.

          • Leggy

            But these things are not reasons at all to visit ANY city. Any city in America has a zoo.what makes houston’s zoo special that I’d want to come here and go to the zoo? We don’t have extremely popular sports teams for anyone to want to visit just to watch games. Kemah boardwalk is in kema. San jacinto monument is in la Porte, not Houston.There are beaches in Galveston which is also not Houston but they’re really not that clean. Battleship tx is also not in Houston, I think it’s in la Porte.There’s literally no unique reason to visit

            • Jennifer

              Good luck then, honey.

    • mochazina

      you are very right – i’m a nola girl and one of the things i’ve noticed when my folks come to visit is that houston is an event city, not an attractions city.

  • -h.h.h.-

    Even if those women happen to be mostly naked, very athletic, and named after my favorite alcoholic beverages.

    i thought your favorite drink was Jack Daniels?

  • Valerie

    I’m from Houston. Lived here all my 26 years of living. If you are an introvert you will hate Social Junkie and Prospect Park, at least I do. Houston is extremely big, I have friends from different cities that visit me and they are always surprised how far they have to drive to get to places.

    When Drake comes to town, I actually leave the city. I cannot deal with the thirst and shenanigans.

    I’m actually tired of the strip culture here, mostly because I can’t twerk and they have nice purses that I wish I could afford on my web developer salary.

    I also have a gun permit. I’m 5ft and I needs to protect myself. Ironically I dated a cop, so they exist. lol

    • Damon Young

      When Drake comes to town, I actually leave the city. I cannot deal with the thirst and shenanigans.

      #ilaughed

      • Valerie

        I just can’t deal lol

    • MsCee

      My friends are always highly amused by the speed limits here. I went to DC and realized I hadn’t driven under 65 in years.

      • RaeRae

        Ahh…driving from here to San Antonio is the best after getting out of Katy. I’ve hit 90 on that stretch of I-10.

        • miss t-lee

          Easily. Once you make it past Sealy, it’s straight NASCAR.

        • brothaskeeper

          90? *yawn* That’s quaint.

        • MsSula

          I went to college in San Antonio and my boyfriend lived in Houston. That stretch of I-10 was like heaven when I was trying to get in town before 9PM on a friday night. Lol.

        • MsCee

          Right, with no care in the world. The police don’t mind.

    • rlgreen91

      You’re a web developer? Where do you work?

      • Valerie

        I work at Rice and freelance.

        • rlgreen91

          Oh nice, I went there. I do web development for a company in the galleria area

          • Valerie

            I was in technical support for the longest. Always did web development on the side decided I hate support and took a chance with web development.
            Whew Galleria traffic lol

          • UnsungWoman

            You are a good one. That area is way too packed.

        • UnsungWoman

          Such a beautiful campus.

          • Valerie

            It really is.

    • charisma_supreme

      As an introvert and fairly recent Houston transplant, agreed re: PP and SJ. I just figured it was below my age range, though.

      I live in Med Center, close to Reliant, and i am tempted to leave town for Super Bowl next year. I’m annoyed about the traffic already.

      • RaeRae

        Have you thought of renting your space? There is money to be made.

        • brothaskeeper

          That’s what I’m doing. Already getting hits.

      • Valerie

        I’m thinking about leaving for the Super Bowl too.

        • RaeRae

          It’s not that bad. The last time it was here they had a lot of activities going. Just avoid the Galleria

          • Valerie

            I guess you’re right.

          • MsSula

            Yeah 2004 Superbowl was lit! Lol.

  • Champ! Glad you enjoyed our city as much as Drake loves our city.

    Drake, was discovered by Jas Prince, son of Rap-A-Lot Record Company owner. Along with his southern roots (dad) he’s basically enamored with Houston culture & it’s women. And when he did the song over the June 27th beat and Bun B cosigned him. We [partially} accepted him.

    Houston is big as f*ck. I’ve been here my. entire. life. – gone to other cities and wished Houston was smaller and had zoning regulations. It’s a gift & a curse.

    We have police officers, since it was a holiday weekend – they were probably working No Refusal Weekend trying to catch all of the drunk drivers.

    You should’ve put out a bat signal and got a suggestion on things to do. You’ve only seen & done a very small portion of what Houston has to offer.

    And thanks for “beautiful black women” shout out. And thats another reason Drake loves the H so much. So actually you 2 have a lot in common. LOL

    • miss t-lee

      “And when he did the song over the June 27th beat and Bun B cosigned him.”

      As much as I love June 27th, I will always gave November 18th a huge side.

      • Well it was supposed to be a compliment…but most looked at it as a back handed compliment.

        He was just happy to get on, lol

        • miss t-lee

          Pretty much…lol

      • RaeRae

        Did yall hear the guy on 97.9 a few years ago do a song over the June 27th beat while his wife was in labor. Madd Hatta played it and people were actually calling in asking to hear it.
        Anyway, I hate to admit it, but I didn’t hate November 18th.

        • miss t-lee

          LOL No way!!! I didn’t hear that. That’s hilarious.

    • Valerie

      Hey girl hey. I’m also from Houston too.

      I should post more often, didn’t know so many people from this blog is from here.

      • HEYYYYYYYYY
        Yeah there are quite a few of us here lol.

        • Valerie

          That’s great!!!!!

          Gotta post more often.

        • Maestro G

          Yep :-)

      • You’re from Houston? So you’re saying you’re thick?

        • Valerie

          Yeah I’m from Houston and I normally let people judge my thickness in person…I’m humble.

          • Damon Young

            I normally let people judge my thickness in person

            this would be a great t-shirt

            • Valerie

              Send me one if you make it.

            • the world needs this shirt

            • Cj

              Please make this happen

          • Humility is overrated

            • Valerie

              Sometimes it is. I’m too short to be thick.

              • false. there are 5’2″ women on here that are thicker than beyonce.

                • Valerie

                  I almost said follow me on twitter. Lol

                  • I just want you to embrace your glorious thickness ma’am.

                    • Valerie

                      That was a hint for you to post your name so I can follow you lol

                    • @FunkyJazzCat

                    • Valerie

                      I thought you were joking this whole time. But followed lol

                • brothaskeeper

                  I seent it!

              • JennyJazzhands

                The shortest are the thickest. We’re stacked and packed tight.

        • PinkRose

          Houston has more prediabetes than the law should allow. IJS.

          • Jennifer

            It also has more restaurants per capita. It’s all related.

          • Valerie

            Thank goodness for that big Medical Center then lol

            • LadyJay?

              Lmaoooo!!!

            • UnsungWoman

              Which is the largest medical center in the country…I believe the world too. I live in that area. Love it.

              • Valerie

                I didn’t want to brag lol.

                The areas near the medical center has the best trails to get some cardio on.

            • MsSula

              Love it!!! LMAO

        • Kas
      • RaeRae

        **raises hand in the UH salute**

        • Valerie

          Go Coogs. I went to the downtown campus though lol. I hope UH makes it into the Big 12.

          • RaeRae

            I hope so too! Long time coming.

        • MsSula

          Go Coogs! I went to grad school at U of H. And I still don’t know how to make that complicated salute. Lol.

    • Damon Young

      “You should’ve put out a bat signal and got a suggestion on things to do”

      I did put something on Facebook, but I forgot to say something on VSB

    • Please send your zoning regulations to New York. Please baby, baby, PLEASE! If I see another article in my local news how some neighborhoods is using zoning regulations to keep out anyone darker than a paper bag preserve the community, I’ll vomit.

      • There are absolutely no zoning laws. That’s how Houston has gotten so big. You have cities (like small ones) inside the city limits. I believe this is how HOAs have gotten so bug around here.

      • Hugh Akston

        While I was at the Labor Day parade I kept thinking that some folks are going to try to prevent this from happening next year..

        • It’s going to end up in Queens or Mount Vernon. Watch. There are too many 2520s in that area, and only Becky and Brad are allowed to get drunk. We have to stay at home unless we’re going to Baptist church to sing Negro spirituals. ;-)

          • Hugh Akston

            Lmao and what’s worse some of yts are your liberal dems they are supposed to be the enlightened ones Smdh

            • New York is a Democratic City, not a Liberal City. Huge difference. The liberal Whites can do the most BS, all while claiming their tolerance. And don’t get me started on the conservative Whites…

              • Hugh Akston

                Very true…my views are more align with libertarian than anything but I still remain independent…

                I don’t bother with white cons…

    • Damon Young

      Houston is big as f*ck. I’ve been here my. entire. life. – gone to other cities and wished Houston was smaller and had zoning regulations. It’s a gift & a curse

      yeah, the (lack of) zoning regulations there are nuts. you’ll see a day care next to a weave shop next to a strip club

      • Truuuuuuuu

      • mochazina

        the lack of zoning is SO ridic here. shoutout to the resale tire shop they opened at the entrance of my subdivision. -_-

        • Are you serious?!

          • mochazina

            serious as a doberman guard dog (which thankfully they don’t have).

      • Funmzi

        Next to warehouse, next to a damn airport. #nozoninginhouston

        • Maestro G

          Next to the Exxon, next to the gymnastics training facility, next to the gated community right across the street. #NozoninginHouston

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