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Houston's Best Dive Bars: Drinking and Diving in the Bayou City Paperback – August 17, 2010
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By John Nova Lomax
Reviewed by Creg Lovett
John Nova Lomax's hero, the lategreat Sig Byrd, wrote about Houston in a way that made the city feel downright intimate. Tiny, in fact. The city was smaller then, in the 1950's, but as he spent mornings downtown, afternoons in the then-nearer suburbs, and evenings in the bars, his man-on-the-street journaling shrunk the town to villagelike proportions. Just a bunch of salesmen, mechanics, delivery drivers, and mentally ill unemployed addicts keeping cool with Jax beer, it seems we were back then.
Sometimes I think Galveston might be now what Houston was like then.
Well Houston has grown to a sickening, mind boggling degree since the 50's, but in his book "Houston's Best Dive Bars: Drinking and Diving in the Bayou City" Lomax applies the Sig Byrd treatment to our hellishly hot, humid and inhumanly large Houston of 2010, and the result is a view which renews your faith in our city's livability.
Taking it in small chunks, viewing it as a city of neighborhoods even though no one else really does, he claims a new and deserved cultural look at the town. In its smallest bars, these dives, people who rebuke corporate chains and find comfort in the charm of a smaller perhaps family owned neighborhood bar are more likely to be individuals. After all, most of the characters with speaking roles in the book wouldn't last more than a few beers in a Bakers Street Pub. They'd be suspect. Asked for cash or a credit card authorization first. Then the tightjeaned bitches and bro's would make faces at these smelly bastards until they carried there asses back to the dive they belong in.Read more ›