By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
Bullish on Cow Town
Is there no stopping them? First they revitalize their downtown--while ours begins to look like Robocop's New Detroit. Then they capture the preeminent arts event of last year--the Barnes Collection--for their already thriving arts district. Then, their ballet company renames itself and pirouettes all over our arts scene.
Doesn't Cow Town get it? Don't they see Dallas re-runs over there? Big D is North Texas' dominant city. Isn't it?
Well, for David Rucker and the Associated Conserv-atives of Texas, Fort Worth's theft of the NASCAR speedway out from under the noses of Dallas' dazed leaders was one outrage too many. They have formed the Society to Restore Dallas to Equal Status with Fort Worth (SRDESWFW).
SRDESWFW calls for a truce between the cities, but with one important condition: Fort Worth Mayor Kay Granger must step down. "Dallas may not endure the punishment of which she is capable of inflicting on us hapless, leaderless business people of Dallas," the organization's announcement says.
Rucker, who is director of ACT, admits SRDESWFW was formed with tongue firmly in cheek, but the humor is born of frustration with the Dallas City Council's incompetence. "Dallas is dying and the people who are in charge don't give a flip," laments Rucker, who owns a photo-processing business downtown. "We're trying to hammer at the so-called powers that be in this city to get their act together and get this city moving again."
Do you know where your kids are?
The diminutive billionaire may have given up on this generation to call him to greatness, but H. Ross Perot could have a new constituency waiting for him in the presidential elections of the 21st century.
On Nickelodeon's popular children's comedy show All That, a Perot character appeared in a skit with Ear Boy, one of the show's recurring characters. All That is basically a Saturday Night Live clone for the junior high set.
Perot, played by a pre-pubescent child in heavy makeup, helps Ear Boy expose corruption in a student council election. The skit ends with Perot screaming, "I'm a short psychopath!" while chasing Pizza Face.
The Perot that All That presents to the nation's children is very rich, very short, very pushy, very weird, and talks like a Texas hick--in other words, just like the real Perot.
Mills has created a local equivalent--though, somehow, "A Contract with The Citizens of South-east Arlington" doesn't have the same ring.
Besides taking on the usual local issues, such as fixing streets and fighting crime, Mills promises in his contract to tackle some thornier issues. For one, he promises to be "100 percent in favor of a multipurpose arena." In another pledge, Mills promises to back off Arlington's tough restaurant-smoking ordinance--he would let businesses that post a "Smoking allowed" sign leave the decision on whether to blacken their lungs up to customers.
And, of course, Mills, "an ordinary guy out for individual rights," claims he's not out for a political career and promises to do everything in his Contract without raising taxes for property owners.
Wait till he gets his first heady taste of city council power.