Just Above Sunset
January 22, 2006 - Alligators In El Paso And Other Texas Subjects

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Book Wrangler

January 23, 2006

By Bob Patterson


When you arrive in downtown El Paso, you will probably notice a statue on the square that features alligators.  At that point, you know that "We're no longer in Kansas, Toto" and that a trip to the local bookstore might be in order.  Why is there a statue of alligators in El Paso and not one in New York City where they were the most famous denizens of the sewers since Ed Norton worked there? 


At the El Paso Barnes & Noble we found some intriguing items that tout the various aspects of Texas that we had not stopped to consider.


We found these titles interesting:


Baseball in the Lone Star State by Tom Kayser and David King ($19.95 paperback, Trinity University Press)


Gone to Texas by Randolph B. Campbell ($35 Oxford)


Up To My Armpits: Adventures Of A West Texas Veterinarian by Dr. Charlie Edwards ($19.95 paperback, Iron Mountain Press)


Texas Bad Girls: Hussies, Harlots, and Horse Thieves by J. Lee Butts ($17.95 paperback, Republic of Texas Press)


The Humor and Drama of Early Texas by George U. Hubbard ($18.95 paperback, Republic of Texas Press)


Texas Sinners and Revolutionaries by Jack C. Ramsay, Jr.  ($18.95 paperback, Republic of Texas Press)


Texas a World in Itself by George Sessions Perry  (no price listed, Pelican Publish Co.)


The Texas Indians by David La Vere  (no price, Texas A&M University Press)


Fifty Years of the Texas Observer edited by Charles Miller  ($19.95 paperback Trinity University Press $19.95)


Texas Almanac from the Dallas Morning News


Texas Post Office Murals by Philip Parisi (Texas A&M University Press)


Wings of Change by Thomas E. Alexander ($29.95 McWhiney Foundation Press)  This is a history of the AAF in Texas during WWII.


Uncle John's Bathroom Reader Plunge into Texas  (Note: while fact checking this book, we discovered the Texas State Parks and Wildlife Guide Book for tourists.  The book is also touted as a Scuba Diver's guide to Texas! They proudly claim (thanks to man made reservoirs) that Texas has more lakes than Minnesota.)


Pistol Packin' Preachers by Elmer Kelton  ($16.95 paperback, Taylor Trade Publishing)


Texas Haunted Forts by Elaine Coleman ($16.95 paperback, Republic of Texas)


Texas Snakes: A Field Guide by James R. Dixon, John E. Werler, illustrated by Regina Levoy  ($19.95 paperback, University of Texas Press)


Handbook of Texas Music by Roy R. Barkley ($45, Texas State Historical Association)


Weird Texas by Wesley Treat, Heather Shades, and Rob Riggs ($19.95 Sterling)


In The Traveling Curmudgeon, Jon Winokur quotes John Steinbeck (on page 59): "Like most passionate nations Texas has its own private history based on, but not limited by, facts."


Now, if the disk jockey will grab the sound track to Giant and go to the Yellow Rose of Texas cut, we'll get out of here like a roustabout going into town on a Saturday night.  Have an "It's a gusher!" type week.

Alligators in El Paso?
Alligators in El Paso?


Text and Photo, Copyright 2005 - Robert Patterson

Email the author at worldslaziestjournalist@yahoo.com



Copyright 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006 - Alan M. Pavlik
The inclusion of any text from others is quotation
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