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Everything posted by 2fatcats

  1. There was another Loma Linda on Westheimer which I believe was located where Christie's is now at the corner of Westheimer and Greenridge. When I first moved here in 1977 it was the first mexican restaurant I ate at in Houston. I am going to assume here that Loma Linda was a chain of some sort then?
  2. 2fatcats

    Houston Icon

    So, What is your favorite Houston Icon? i.e., Astrodome, special building etc.<<'marc' I would have to vote for the Astrodome first, but I am also partial to the view of the refineries from the ship channel bridge at night. All those miles of sparkling lights are such a difference from the daytime view. I think it's iconic because despite our diversity, Houston is still very much an engergy city and without all that there might not have been as many great downtown buildings. That view to me, symbolizes where the growth of Houston began.
  3. Discount tire is the place to go. I buy a lot of tires because of my job and it's the only place where you get free patching, decent tires, and great service no matter the location. I highly recommend them.
  4. Memorial Parkway.<<sttombiz I live in Memorial Parkway in one of the last houses built along the fringes. While much of Memorial Parkway is an older neighborhood, and certainly not in the caliber of Cinco Ranch, or Kelliwood, in it's defense I will say that it is a quiet place. I get my little newsletter every month and make a point to read the police reports for the area and can tell you for certain, crime is pretty low here and has been for the 15 or so years I have lived out here. My house is now valued at nearly 60 thousand dollars more than I originally paid for it and when buying it, the fact that this area was affordable to me and surrounded by higher dollar real estate was very much on my mind. When I moved here, I knew I was going to pay cash for whatever I bought and did a lot of research into this area before dropping a lot of money on a house. Of course 15 years ago, Cinco Ranch and the Kelliwoods were just in their beginning stages and most people had no concept of how the area would develop as it did....although at the time my real estate agent did tell me they planned to build houses from I-10 to Westheimer...and turned out she was right. This is a good area for people who can't afford places like Cinco Ranch or Kelliwood but being surrounded by those subdivisions will keep your property values a little higher.
  5. One thing I often wonder about... I wonder what happened to John Hills music room he was so nuts over. It was supposed to be one wang doodler of a music room. Lous Erath built all the speakers, etc.. Was supposed to be miles of wiring. The furnishings were supposed to be pretty up town too.. Kinda like being at a baby music hall or something..<<nm5k Wasn't that music 'room' actually supposed to have been an addition to the house? If you look at the house from the Kirby side, you can see what looks like an addition toward the back and I always thought that might be the music room. The house is on a pretty small lot and sits at an odd angle to the street so it's hard to tell.
  6. I'm curious where you were, because I'm curious what Houston was like that day<<'DJ V Lawrence' I was on I-10 inbound from Katy going to my first stop of the day when my roomate called and said two planes had hit the World Trade Center. I immediately thought it was not a random thing. Upon reaching my first stop, the tv was on in their office and you could see the burning buildings. Everyone was milling around and getting ready to return home. Back in my truck shortly after, I had the radio on and heard about the Pentagon. That's when I suddenly felt like we were under attack and I wondered if something was going to happen here also. I was headed downtown at that point. After my second stop, my office called and said things were shutting down and to head home. Most people who had made it to work were leaving anyway. I think most people got home and kept close to their tv sets the rest of the day. It was something we could not comprehend happening to us on such a grand scale. Everything just shut down, people didn't go into work, the planes were grounded and there was more than a little aprehension going around. As a side note, after 9/11 there was a huge upturn in security particularly in all the downtown buildings, but after about six months this came to a halt in 95 percent of them. While all that security makes my job harder, having to be in and out of these places all day, I still advocate it and was sorry to see it lapse in a way. Complacency after all, is our worst enemy.
  7. I haven't been back there in so long but I am happy to see some of those formerly sad old houses fixed up. Oakland's so full of historic residential architecture in the form of Arts & Crafts and Moderne stuccoed bungalows, since its building boom took place right after the '06 quake and continued right on through WWII. <<danax I used to visit some friends who lived there. They had a huge old victorian built in the 1880's which needed a lot of work but still had all those neat things like high ceilings and pocket doors. Unfortunately it was in a very seedy part of town off San Pedro and right across the street from a charity mission. It was sandwiched between two brick warehouses and with a high fence in front you could disappear into your own world once you stepped off the street. They rented it for the unheard of amount of 500 dollars a month (this was in the mid 80's). I always enjoyed going there, being a native Californian but one thing I did notice is that when you cross the city limit from Oakland into Berkley its like moving to another planet. Oakland back then was pretty run down in places and Berkley was nice and green as I recall. Oakland was also the only place I ever saw a chicken restaurant with bullet proof glass and curb service only.
  8. Has anyone noticed the recent openings of several new branch banks all around the city? Comerica, Wachovia, Washington Mutual and a few others have put up several new locations in the last year or so. The one thing I notice about them is they have a similar style, very compact and with interesting architectural details, but kind of cookie cutter at the same time. For example, Comerica is using stone and a more Texas kind of feel to their design, WMU's buildings are kind of boxy and Wachovia has a little modern flair to theirs. It makes me observe the big difference between now and the days when there were a few big banks downtown with the columned fronts and respectable foyers. But then I suppose being able to drive through makes all the difference doesn't it?
  9. Kurth's book is just awful, which makes it perfect fodder for the TV movie it became. <<FilioScotia I have to agree with you that it was awful and probably written strictly to get Kurth some cash. The Thompson book was very good and was the first of the two I had read on the subject. The whole thing was quite a story, as any scandal might be, and I am sure the citizens of River Oaks had a lot to say about it behind closed doors. Funny how things always seem more interesting when it happens to someone well known, as though they were above reproach unlike the rest of us.
  10. Does anyone remember this 1981 true story/film and does anyone know what ever became of the doctor? <<Vertigo58 I saw the movie and read the book. Dr. Hill was shot to death on the front steps of his River Oaks Mansion while still involved in the legal entanglements concerning his wife's death. He had poisoned her, and her father, oilman Ash Robinson was pushing to get him indicted. He was killed by a supposed robber who conveniently shot him as he opened the door. The house is still there, (I look at it every time I drive by it) LOL, and also down the street is Ash Robinsons house on Kirby. The book Murder In Texas, was actually written with the assistance of Dr. Hill's second wife Ann Kurth, who after a time came to believe that he was trying to kill her also.
  11. I used to love going to the carnivals...the travelling ones that would set up all over town...usually for a week or so in one location. <<Jermaine There are still quite a few of them around, in fact I saw one packing up just today out by the beltway where that old Auchan Store was. You see them often at Fiesta or places like that. If you want something a little more highbrow, Circe De Soliel is out at the Horserace track right now. They have some cool tents.
  12. The Original New Orleans Poboy on Main is now gone...being dismantled as we speak. Boy they sure had good pancakes. :::sigh:::
  13. Now that we're on the subject of eating establishment, I've started remember cafeterias.<<northbeaumont Anyone remember Albrittons? They had a few locations around town. My roomate tells me she used to go to the one on Stella Link as a kid and they had a lady playing an organ or piano or something there plus a kind of conveyor belt that brought some things around to you. Anyone ever hear of that? This would be back in the early to mid 60's I think.
  14. What about Elysian?<<DaTrain Yes Elysian is another eyesore. It was even worse after that last big flood when most of the things in the houses were out on the street waiting to be hauled away.
  15. You need to check out the much unaligned Lyons Ave start at beginning (under 59S.) to end in Denver Harbor.<<Vertigo58 I have traveled Lyons a few times and the one thing I noticed about it was the abundance of small funeral homes about every half mile. Also if you stand at the intersection of Lyons and Jensen and look west you will see the Skyline rising up out of the slums. It's a great photo op. I recall several years ago driving through that same intersection and seeing some people standing around a barrel that was burning to keep warm. Not the best parts of town, but definitely interesting.
  16. I looked there once for a two bedroom, two bath. They originally didnt' have floor plans like that, so they knocked out walls between 1/1 and efficiencies. It was very odd, because then the larger apartment had two entrances in front and a back door in each of the bedrooms that let out into the parking lot.<<danes75 Reminds me of my favorite Houston apartment back in the apartment days. It was in that huge old complex that used to be where the Kroger center is now at the corner of Westpark /Buffalo Speedway/Edloe. I had an efficiency there that had an honest to God Murphy bed and a little bitty kitchen with these porcelain covered fixtures all built in including an icebox. Very 40's. It had a back door with a little porch and there were lots of trees and green lawn. It was fantastic and I almost cried when they tore it all down some years later.
  17. Jensen is another one i consider to be like Airline - there are some neat places (in horrible condition, of course...)<<sevfiv I have to agree with you on that. Whenever I go photographing, I usually wind up in the seedier parts of town because for one thing they have a lot of character and I happen to be drawn to abandoned buildings or rundown businesses as subjects.
  18. There was another topic about ugly freeway intersections, but I got to wondering, what are Houston's ugliest streets?<<Subdude Jensen Drive and also Hardy Street between downtown and 610.
  19. I prefer Harry's on Tuam - smaller portions, more modest prices, good food, better people watching.<<brucesw I love Harry's and have eaten there since the early 80's although not as much now since I moved to Katy. I really liked their old building with the squeeky floors and somewhat seedy appearance. The new building is nice, just not the same ambiance in my opinion. The food is still excellent though.
  20. It has all the markings of another trashy move to show Houston in a bad light.<<MidtownCoog (laughing) Well you have to admit we have had our share of Houston being shown in a bad light. Andrea Yates, The woman who ran down her husband at the Hilton and let's not forget the Channelview Cheerleader thing, what did they call her, the PomPom Mom? I guess we get the astronaut love triangle too. Do you notice a trend? Most of them are from the Clear Lake area.
  21. Hi, any of you receive calls from police soliciting for donations? I have receive three already and they can be really nice at first, but if you ask them to mail you something, they get really aggressive and if you say no, they get rude and then hang up on you. I suspect they are not really the police, maybe someone on staff.<<webdude A few of them might be legit, but most of them are scams. They come under a lot of names like Texas Police Officers Association or some such thing. What they are is some guy working out of an office who solicits either outright donations or asks you to put an ad in their newspaper and in return they will send you a sticker to put on your car. The deal is, they might print the paper, but it only goes to the people who bought ads and sometimes it's nonexistant all together. When I first moved to Houston eons ago I worked for a guy who did just that thing. He sold the ads/collected donations and I went out and picked up the checks. I have to shake my head whenever I see those stickers on people's cars because I know they've been had and people wanted the stickers because they believed the urban myth that if you had one you wouldn't get a ticket. LOL Just like some folks think you won't with a 100 club sticker. What's even worse is I also knew of a man who prints up a little newletter called the Missing Children's Bulletin and was running the same type of scam out of a little apartment on Fountainview. But I believe he finally got shut down.
  22. When I look at mod houses, I love the interiors and the general look that says hey this house is a mod<<GREASER A few days ago I was taking some plans to one of those mid century moderns in the Memorial area and the first thing I noticed when the door opened was this light fixture in the entry that looked like a Sputnik. It looked like it might have been original to the house but I thought it was really cool.
  23. I too thought Houston was getting really "raggety (sp??) around the edges" until I spent some time in the SF Bay Area. Their freeways were dirty like ours. Signage. Yes. Same ol' American crap. When will the United States of America spend money to clean up and look good? <<houstonfella I guess what people don't realize sometimes is that it costs a lot of money to run a city of this size and sometimes beautification projects take a back seat to things like roads and drainage ditches. We also have those lax zoning laws which sometimes put residential and commercial all in one block so that doesn't help much either. I believe as some others have noted, that one's perception of Houston is sometimes limited to the areas you travel, live or work in. The thing to do is get out and drive around. See the whole city, explore it. You would be surprised at some of the things you might find.
  24. Oops! Thanks for the clarification, 2fatcats. I was afraid I might have mixed up the two to some extent, as the background information I found didn't always make the distinction between father and son. <<'tmariar' No problem. And yes you're right, the articles were kind of vague. I really hate that even though a house is put on the list of historic places and other registries that it still can't be saved from the wrecking ball. I really do think those laws should be amended. Maybe someone will step up to the plate yet and find a use for the house and the funding to pursue it.
  25. I think he was the one that used to keep silver dollars in racks at his house. <<'nm5k' That would be Jim West Jr, not to be confused with Jim West Sr. who actually built the house. Sr. died in the 1940's and his wife Jessie in the 1950's. In his will he stipulated that the house was not to be used as a private residence again. I hope they can save the house, it's very cool.
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