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Posts posted by thefensk

  1. There was a bowling alley near the Galleria on Sage Rd. The Windsor Plaza Bowling alley was in operation during the 60's and early 70's. The building is still there, but the entertainment served these days is much more adult themed than picking up strikes and spares.

    It got the name because it was adjacent to "Windsor Plaza" the strip shopping center at Richmond and Sage. In the old days Windsor plaza was anchored on the Sage road side by an A&P supermarket and by the Cinerama movie theatre on the other end at least after a couple of years. The "cinerama" section was a later addtion to the shopping center. The bowling alley was behind the shopping center, fronting on Sage. Windsor Plaza itself fronted toward Richmond.

    I remember the very day Window Plaza Bowling Alley opened, they had free bowling and my mom took us all there to take part. I must have been like seven or eight, putting that in the very early in the 60s. That was the first time I ever went bowling, but I used to go bowling there all the time in the 60s.

  2. Two "incidents" come to mind, but they don't really qualify as riots.

    There was an extended protest at UH where students were protesting the demolition of numerous trees at the site of a new Arts building. I believe the result was that the design was changed to preserve one of the trees. I remember that an art student saved one of the felled tree trunks and incorporated it into a fanciful sculpture a couple of years later. Anyway that lasted for a number of days with students occupying the site. This was the year before I started at UH, so I missed out on this one.

    There was an "almost" riot on Dowling St in the summer of 1970. There was a Black Panther-like group known as People's Party II who had their headquarters on Dowling. The head of People's Party II, Carl Hampton, was killed in a confrontation with Houston Police. I remember that the Space City! made quite an issue of this at the time. I remember this because I did some work for Space City! from time to time and happened to be in their office/house when this all happened. A lot of people thought at the time that it was all going to "come down" that night. Nothing much came of it but I always lamented that the Carl Hampton thing was brushed aside so completely.

  3. There was one on Hillcroft near Robert E. Lee High School in the mid 70s also.

    Wow. Not sure about HBG, but there was another fancy burger place on Hilcroft near Lee ... can't think of the name. There were phones on the tables and you "called in" your order.

    On the whole HBG on Kirby thing ... the original poster had it right, there was one down toward West University, in fact it was IN West University. I remember this because a friend of mine managed it for a while and he was complaining to me that they had WEEKLY health inspections instead of monthly like in Houston. They had a full-time health inspector who didn't have enough restaurants to inspect I guess.

    We both had previously worked at the kirby location of Rolando's Burger Factory, which was between Alabama and Westheimer. I was Rolando's original employee at that location and trained at his original original location on Richmond in a reformed coffee shop that was close to Woodhead between Woodhead and Dunlavy.

    The Kirby location was originally a really lame Jack-in-the-Box copycat called The Pied Piper, which I remember because I helped him clean it out and got tired of the stupid Pied Piper logo on the zillions of bags and such we were throwing out. The place was filthy!

    Over a period of many months Rolando took the shell of the building and rebuilt it, expanding the dining room and changing (some might say creating) the decor as he built the business.

    I think this may have also been the location of a 50s era fried chicken place called The Chicken Shack. Pre-KFC, or pre-KFC restaurant I might say since originally Col Sanders was selling the KFC concept as an add-in. I remember some cafeteria downtown featured Kentucky Fried Chicken.

  4. I have another vague memory of a place I only went to a couple of times on Westheimer close to Montrose,

    something like The Treehouse (it also had a Spanish or Italian name but always added Treehouse as a translation) ... it was built on a really strange floorplan with huge tree trunks throughout giving the impression that it really was a treehouse.

    Nice place to take a date as most of the tables were set into little alcoves and were very private.

    There was another short lived place on Westheimer in the same strip center with the old Budget Tapes and Records; it was a small Greek cafe called Kojak's. Their back room was set up almost like a grotto with weird stalagtite stuff hanging from the ceiling.

    Killer gyros at that place ... in fact I had never seen gryros on a menu before that place. A line drawing of Telly Savalas on the cover of the menu really added to the funky charm of the place. Today the litigation police would have swooped down on them within minutes of opening.

  5. I saw a dude walking outside this morning draped in only a towel. Don't really know why he was like this, or what he was doing, but it wasn't like at his house in the suburbs or something ... it was at a major apartment complex with at least 1,000 residents in close proximity and school children walking to school or waiting for their bus (don't think he was a pervert or anything, just looked like he stepped out of the shower and onto the sidewalk...)

    Got me to thinking. What are the weirdest (strange, unusual, odd, peculiar, different) things you've actually seen before? This should be things you witnessed with your eyes in-person and not on television or the Internet.

    In 1971 I lived in a fourplex on Bagby at Dennis. The apartment had a nice screened in porch with that slatted privacy screen where at night you could see out but nobody could see in.

    It was a warm spring night and I was sitting out on the porch enjoying the late night when all of a sudden a tremendous racket started started coming down Bagby... a horrendous screeching crunching grinding noise. It got closer and closer and out of the darkness here came this car, no left front tire, no left front wheel even, speeding down the street, sparks flying. He had to have been going 40 miles an hour and he hit a dip right in from of the house and damned if the car didn't bounce up and down on that left front and showered even more sparks as it crashed back into the street ... and it continued on down the street out of sight but the sound continued for a few more seconds.

    True to the times I sort of thought to myself, "Far out, man ..."

  6. Even though it's only been gone a short time, I miss the original Antone's on Taft. The chain Antone's pale in comparison to the original locations. I don't even know how many 'original' stores exist.

    I also miss ZuZu, which was on Shepherd near Fairview. It was Mexican fast food and I remember a salsa bar or something... it was quaint with good food.

    All of these posts got me to thinking ... there used to be a dingy dirty looking Chinese Restaurant on Elgin, around Smith or Louisiana or maybe even up as far as Milam or Travis ... heading East it was on the right.

    For a long time it was the Tin-Tin but later I think it was changed to Blue Star.

    I still always called it Tin-tin. It looked like a greasy spoon cafe, but they had just about the absolute best Egg Foo Yung in the world.

    For that matter, that was from the time when most Chinese restaurants had Chinese AND American food.

    I have fond memories of another place in Bellaire called The Mayflower ... wonderful food. I worked not far from there and ate lunch there a lot and they must have had six different lunch menus, with different specials every day of both Chinese and American lunches. You could eat there every day and go quite a while without repeating yourself and if you didn't want Chinese you could get chicken fried steak or roast beef.

  7. I did some research on the place recently. The info I found is here.

    See also the oldest bar in Houston thread.

    I lived around the corner from this place for most of the 1970s, on Hazard Street. Thanks for your research -- as I did not remember the "ice house" designation, but do now remember it being West Alabama Drive In.

    I think I bought some beer to go from that place a couple of times but it did not seem conducive to my "long hair" image of the time. We'll just have to chalk it up as another local treasure I stupidly skipped.

    A true time warp sort of place I guess. I can easily remember it from the 70s ... there was a Stop N Go almost right next door ... and it was not far from ChopStix Chinese take out restaurant, like just a half a block.

  8. A. Money - few bucks for the movie, 20 something for a room. And what would the motel clerk think?

    B. Alibi - Mom, Becky and I are going to see Blazing Saddles at the McLendon

    C. Forbidden Fruit - what if someone sees us? What if we get caught? Kind of adds to the excitement for some folks.

    Plus, there was a time making out and "petting" was as far as you went.

    And people from the "video" generation forget that there were very few tv stations, your parents were ALWAYS home, nobody you knew had their own place ... and it really was the cheapest way to see a movie, especially if you could sneak your date into the place in the trunk of your car!

    I remember seeing the Red Bluff, but never went there. There was a drive-in on bellaire blvd at hillcroft, across from Globe (sheesh, whatever happened to Globe (besides being turned into a Fiesta, I mean).

    Another one I remember, that I used to go to in the late 70s was somewhere along the south loop. Besides the 610 traffic you had many adjacent train tracks and if the wind was just right you were on the flight path for Hobby ... a truely memorable entertainment experience (and somebody wondered why we made out at the drive-in).


  9. The Paris was a little different . It began to be a soft porn venue way back in the mid- sixties . Flicks with a lot of nudity and dumb blond comedy but none of the XXX hard stuff that exploded in the seventies . I remember around 1968 what a thrill it was at eighteen to borrow my parents car and sneak off to the Paris.

    Yeah, I never went there but remember the big "controversial showing" of 'I AM CURIOUS (Yellow)' ... they were picketed by church groups and I vaguely remember a minor firebombing. Lots of free publicity!

  10. The Fog Man's coming, The Fog Man's coming ...

    This thread reminded me that we had mosquito spraying even way back in the 50s and 60s. I can't remember how often they came, maybe once a week in the summer. What an innocent and carefree and STUPID time ... kids would love to run through "the fog" ... our parents wouldn't let us but they didn't always know, did they? I remember seeing some kid riding his bike right behind the truck in the thick of the stuff ... wonder what untold health miseries he has (or had) in later years.

    The worst I would do was hold my breath and run through the thick cloud to the other side of the street where it was clear ... then do it again back to my yard. (cough cough).

    I just saw the first mosquito truck of the year going down the road in the southeast Spring area. In my area they spray once a month unless somebody complains about it to the HOA.

    How often does the mosquito truck go down your street?

    The Fog Man's coming, The Fog Man's coming ...

    This thread reminded me that we had mosquito spraying even way back in the 50s and 60s. I can't remember how often they came, maybe once a week in the summer. What an innocent and carefree and STUPID time ... kids would love to run through "the fog" ... our parents wouldn't let us but they didn't always know, did they? I remember seeing some kid riding his bike right behind the truck in the thick of the stuff ... wonder what untold health miseries he has (or had) in later years.

    The worst I would do was hold my breath and run through the thick cloud to the other side of the street where it was clear ... then do it again back to my yard. (cough cough).

    I should add, that back then, as I remember, this spraying was by private contractor hired by our neighborhood association.

    I don't think it was done by any official government entity.

  11. No way i would remember that place without the picture.

    I don't specifically remember the buffalo but I do remember the round fronted building

    ... this was like memory jab. Wow.


    Martha and H2B are correct. There were 3D injun savages cookin up Savage Fried Chicken on the roof.

    Do either of you remember the buffalo on the Town House at Waugh and Allen Parkway?




  12. 57tbird is right, after consulting my references again, mom said,"oh yeah !, there were some indians on that roof, I forgot." she also went on to say how the fire looked like what 57tbird described. That place was apparently very popular. Hey,57tbird, which was delicious, the BEER or the Oysters, or Both !? :lol:

    Yeah, I rememer all of this as well ... heap big Indians up there! I think a lot of the lighting was via neon ... seem to remember a lot of neon up there.

    Bill Williams was also a big Fat Stock Show supporter and had at least one fully stuffed grand champion steer in his lobby ... a taxidermist's dream job probably. I seem to remember going there at least once as late as 1970 or 1971.

    I was in awe of that place when I was a kid. We only ever went to the Main St location ... didn't know about others.

    I was telling a friend how these old Houston threads are a cure for dead brain cells ...

  13. We used to go to Leo's, and I remember the story of his riding with Villa. We also went to Old Mexico on Gray, Santa Anita downtown, and Felix on Westheimer. But, our favorite place was Del Rio on Shepherd near W. 26th. There is an electronics place there now.

    Oh, man. Santa Anita. That was my grandmother's epitome of fine eating. I recall it as so-so, but it was pretty fancy ... at least to a kid in the 60s.


  14. I haven't lived in Houston for quite a while, but the place I miss is an old Mexican Restaurant that used to be on Shepherd Drive, Leo's ...

    Old Leo supposedly used to ride with Pancho Villa and he'd work the register. It was supposedly a favorite hangout of ZZ Top. It had a funky atmosphere and a fairly generic array of standard Tex-Mex but it was real comfort food too and it was always good. I think it eventually burned down ... I was shocked when I came to town and saw only an awning ... no building anymore.

  15. Yes, there was a Hamburgers by Gourmet on Kirby. I'm thinking it was between Westheimer and Richmond, but it could have been farther south. My favorite burger there was the bacon bleu cheese burger.

    There was also a competitor, Rolando's Burger Factory. He actually predated HBG in his original location on Richmond Avenue, not far from Dunlavy. He later opened a number of locations, on Kirby just off West Alabama and farther up West Alabama I think, up closer to Univ of St. Thomas. I worked for Rolando for a while when I was in college -- He only used very lean meat and when I first started working for him he was proud of his fresh cut fries but success eventually pushed him to frozen, as the locations were too small to devote the resources to storing, cleaning, cutting fries day in/day out.

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