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Bayou bubbling button


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#1 RWReagen

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Posted Monday, December 29, 2008 at 3:00 PM

Sorry if this has been brought up before...

I am curious about a mystery secret button:

It was found in a brick structure on the theatre side of the bridge on Preston st at the NW corner of the Wortham Theatre. You can walk inside this structure and on the left hand side there is/was a metal plate with a button. Several years ago I happened upon this thing and of course had to press the button. Down below in the bayou there was a big rumbling gurgling noise and then a fairly large surfacing of bubbles out in the middle of the water.

Does anyone happen to know what in the world this is? I think it was a really cool hidden surprise and enjoyed it. I have not been able to see if it still works but might be able to get over there at lunch this week and get a better picture.

I have included a screen grab from Google Street View buts its not too good.

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#2 kylejack

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Posted Monday, December 29, 2008 at 3:28 PM

Yeah, I love the button.

I took a video of the button in action for those who don't know about it:



#3 musicman

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Posted Monday, December 29, 2008 at 3:32 PM

it works. i walk by there every couple of weeks.
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#4 sevfiv

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Posted Monday, December 29, 2008 at 3:32 PM

I think it is part of the Buffalo Bayou Partnership's public art projects. There's a geocache along the Preston bridge too called "Bubbles the Bayou Monster."

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#5 RWReagen

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Posted Monday, December 29, 2008 at 3:36 PM

Wow thats awesome. I figured it had to be something like that. Thanks for the enlightenment!

#6 kylejack

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Posted Monday, December 29, 2008 at 3:37 PM

Does anyone happen to know what in the world this is?

To question the button is to trivialize its mystery and greatness. Do not ask why the button is. The button is simply there for us to enjoy. The button should not have to explain itself.

Also, there was a Best of Houston award given out to the button a few years back. It won Best Secret.

No night in the Theater District is complete without a stroll over to the Magic Button, a big red disc hidden in a tower on the Preston Street bridge. Push it, and you'll hear the sound of water being released into Buffalo Bayou. Now, we could make some phone calls and ask what the deal is, and then somebody or other could tell us that it was included by the architect to give the area a sense of whimsy, but where's the fun in that? Instead, impress your date with a story about the wizard who lives beneath the water or the ancient sewage treatment plant built by a long-forgotten race. Anything's better than the truth.

http://www.houstonpr...-secret-198218/

#7 kylejack

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Posted Monday, December 29, 2008 at 3:44 PM

I think it is part of the Buffalo Bayou Partnership's public art projects. There's a geocache along the Preston bridge too called "Bubbles the Bayou Monster."

Hm, I'm not sure. You can hear a giant air/water release coming from the Wortham Building. I thought it might be some process needed by the Wortham Building. Not sewage obviously, but maybe runoff water that needs to be jettisoned periodically or something. If you stand around long enough, you'll see the process trigger by itself without anyone pushing the button.

Do not question the Button! Do not presume to know the nature of the Button! The Button demands obedience, and frequent pressage! (Please note, the button will only work in >60 second intervals.)

Edited by kylejack, Monday, December 29, 2008 at 3:45 PM.


#8 editor

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Posted Monday, December 29, 2008 at 3:56 PM

Sounds like an opportunity to frighten some kayakers.

#9 TexasVines

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Posted Monday, December 29, 2008 at 4:00 PM

It is there to stir the dead bodies

shout out to joe campos torres!

#10 kylejack

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Posted Monday, December 29, 2008 at 4:08 PM

It is there to stir the dead bodies

shout out to joe campos torres!

And don't forget http://www.click2hou...?subid=10100242

Shortly before that place got raided and 140 people got arrested.

#11 dbigtex56

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Posted Monday, December 29, 2008 at 4:46 PM

The bayou seems to pass gas in several places; spend some time at Allen's Landing and you'll notice streams of bubbles randomly rising to the surface.

Perhaps this was the inspiration for The Button. Or maybe The Button allows us the fantasy of being a Cold War president, and seeing the explosive results in the distance...

#12 UrbaNerd

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Posted Monday, December 29, 2008 at 4:54 PM

Posted Image
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#13 memebag

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Posted Monday, December 29, 2008 at 6:40 PM

That's the flush lever for Houston. You just flushed our city.
Radamadango.

#14 Porchman

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Posted Monday, December 29, 2008 at 11:06 PM

Yeah, I love the button.

I took a video of the button in action for those who don't know about it:



It Farts? That's It? One can't part the muddy waters? I want a Moses button!

Hey Tillman, get in touch with the Buffalo Bayou Partnership. Oo! You could charge $8.00 per parting!

Edited by Porchman, Monday, December 29, 2008 at 11:06 PM.

Porchman

#15 rsb320

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Posted Tuesday, December 30, 2008 at 1:19 PM

I just pressed the bubble button - cool.

I tried to do it again!, do it again! but I guess it has to reprime itself.

#16 kylejack

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Posted Tuesday, December 30, 2008 at 1:36 PM

I just pressed the bubble button - cool.

I tried to do it again!, do it again! but I guess it has to reprime itself.

60 second delay.

#17 Geoff8201

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Posted Tuesday, December 30, 2008 at 5:20 PM

I miss the button, haven't pressed it in years. I remember first being shown it by a girl I was dating back in 02. Good times, good times. Need to venture back that way some time.

#18 rsb320

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Posted Tuesday, December 30, 2008 at 5:27 PM

I miss the button, haven't pressed it in years. I remember first being shown it by a girl I was dating back in 02. Good times, good times. Need to venture back that way some time.



It seems like, in the video link above, the button was red. Today, the button is green. Urgh, everything's gone or going green. That's fine, but can't we associate an additional color as environmentally friendly?

#19 Geoff8201

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Posted Tuesday, December 30, 2008 at 5:50 PM

It seems like, in the video link above, the button was red. Today, the button is green. Urgh, everything's gone or going green. That's fine, but can't we associate an additional color as environmentally friendly?


How can they change it?!?!? Red makes it seem dangerous. Makes it that much more fun to press!

I guess the other color they can use could be brown... Trees are also brown (the trunk part)... that do it for ya?

#20 kylejack

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Posted Tuesday, December 30, 2008 at 5:51 PM

It seems like, in the video link above, the button was red. Today, the button is green. Urgh, everything's gone or going green. That's fine, but can't we associate an additional color as environmentally friendly?

WHAT. This is an outrage. How dare they change the true nature of the button.

#21 gto250us

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Posted Friday, January 2, 2009 at 4:38 PM

Posted Image

We used to say "Push Button for Speech by LBJ"

#22 barracuda

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Posted Friday, January 2, 2009 at 4:53 PM

Too much publicity will spoil the fun! ;)

When I first heard about it I didn't know the exact location. My friend and I spent a good half an hour before we found it.

#23 UrbaNerd

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Posted Friday, January 2, 2009 at 4:59 PM

We used to say "Push Button for Speech by LBJ"


That works in more than one way! :D
Ask not what your country can do for you, but rather, what the heck you can do for yourself!

#24 fatesdisastr

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Posted Monday, January 5, 2009 at 2:44 AM

i used to walk past there every day i worked and noticed the ripples and wondered what the heck it was, now i know!


the button!!!!

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