219 Chapters
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This is for the Birds

Edited by Kenneth L. Untiedt University of North Texas Press PDF



8:16 AM

Page 255


My wife Georgia and I were bird watchers, or “birders,” as folks frequently called bird watchers. It is in this sense that we hunted wild birds. We also hunted for wildflowers, which led to hunting for arboretums and botanical gardens. Different species of trees also held our interests.

The government of the State of Texas had passed the laws making the mocking bird the State bird, all species of blue bonnets the

State flower, and the pecan the State tree. Georgia and I saw wild birds just about any place we looked. We also had a fair amount of knowledge about the local birds in our part of Central Texas.

Mourning doves, quail, and wild turkeys we knew as game birds.

Other Central Texas birds included mocking birds, scissor tailed flycatchers, jays, wrens and sparrows, whip-poor-wills, owls, hawks, crows, cliff swallows, cardinals, and turkey vultures.

We found mocking birds just about everywhere, representing

Texas as the State Bird. They were in the residential areas, warehouse areas, and commercial districts with banks, malls, small businesses and offices for professional people. Scissor-tailed flycatchers with bright salmon-pink sides and belly snapped up flying bugs out in the open country. Jays in populated areas scolded cats. Wrens and sparrows in barnyards hopped about and pecked for food.

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Deliverance II: The Tale of a Strange Encounter in the Big Thicket

Edited by Kenneth L. Untiedt University of North Texas Press PDF



8:17 AM

Page 289



When I met Jim twenty some-odd years ago, he was vice-president of an insurance company. That evening I had dinner with him and another fellow. Over drinks before dinner, he got to telling us about a strange encounter he had experienced in the Big Thicket that was reminiscent of the James Dickey book—and the Burt

Reynolds film—Deliverance.

The encounter had occurred several years earlier. At the time

Jim had lived in Dallas. He wanted to get away from the stress of his job for a few days, to get off by himself in the woods and hunt deer. During deer season, Jim drove to a small town in the Thicket.

It was a cold night. He stopped at a hamburger joint to ask directions. The cook insisted that Jim buy at least a burger or two before he would tell him anything.

As Jim was eating, the cook introduced him to another customer, Frank, who was a local hunter. Frank said that he was camped out with some of his kinfolks and invited Jim to join them.

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Jess's First Coon Hunt

Edited by Kenneth L. Untiedt University of North Texas Press PDF



8:15 AM

Page 155


When I was in high school in Hondo, Texas, I hunted for varmints all winter long. Furs were bringing good prices, and I could make some good spending money from selling them. Even though I was after anything with fur that I could sell, we always just called it

“coon hunting.” There were three ways that we hunted back then.

First, and my favorite, was walking the creeks at night with my dogs and letting them tree the varmints. My dogs were not noisy hounds, but rather quiet Border Collies that would only bark if they had something treed, and even then, they did not bark a lot. I trained them to be quiet so as not to scare off the rest of the critters along the creek. Also, I didn’t always have permission to hunt on all the places along the creeks where I walked. Back then, nobody really cared about me hunting for coons along the creeks.

That changed a few years later when fur prices got really high. I did this type of hunting by myself, and when I was most serious about the hunt.

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2 Milongueando Macha Homoerotics: Dancing the Tango, Torta Style (a Performative Testimonio)

ARTURO J ALDAMA Indiana University Press ePub


I have spent most of my life thinking up close to and in the middle of people, people to people. Recently I have been looking at the need to rethink gender in a historical and global manner so that one could no longer separate gender, class, sexuality, and race but could not think of them as intersecting, either. The relation of intersection still requires conceptually separable entities, categories. Today I said to myself, “Let’s think about the tango with these things in mind and see what I can make of it without losing a sense of the erotic.”

I am someone with an intimate connection with tango style, music, dance, lyrics, its lived geography, both from within circles of affection and from within the moving anonymous encounters of the street, the milongas, tango bars like chapels where one listens to someone sing, getting in touch with the sacred within pain. I am also a witness to the development of tango tourism.

Robert Duval, an american tango aficionado and a self-proclaimed authority on the tango, confuses it with a dance and finds its attraction in the impression that “here is a people that know that men are men and women are women and are not all embarrassed about it,” a claim he makes with a great sense of pride of having found a people so close to his own sensibilities. By this he means that men lead—on the floor of life as it were—and women follow, in a debased sense of the word. The tango for him is a dance understood to be a quintessentially heterosexual performance of the active/submissive understanding of masculinity/ femininity. No sexual ambiguities, thus no ambiguities about agency. I want to think about the logic of tango here as a more complex phenomenon than the one tango tourism sells.

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Part IV

Edited by Kenneth L. Untiedt University of North Texas Press PDF

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