Articles in Featured

  1. Scraping the Courts

    Uncensored government records are tough to get and our local agencies make it no easier. Unlike the Federal Government, where they’ve been releasing useful information for years, the City of Austin just got into the Open Data game.

    At the end of 2011, they revamped their site and included ...

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  2. How's the Water?

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    Caption: Does your pool look like this? You might want to test the water.

    “Public pools are the number one spreader of disease,” my boss said. He was teaching me how to test and balance pool chemistry. I was 16 and about to be in charge of the pool at ...

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  3. Slumlords Exposed

    Austin Slum Apartment Map

    Caption: Most of these run-down properties were built in the early 70s and are located in southeast Austin, the one exception being Bainbridge Villas in 78704. Find them on the map: 1) Park Lane Villas 2) Wood Ridge Apartments 3) Wickersham Green 4) Canyon Oaks 5) Bainbridge Villas.

    When I ...

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  4. Racing Towards a Crash

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    Four of us were living in a one bedroom apartment. Shoreline Apartments, which used to be located off East Riverside just past I-35, was mostly full of poor Mexican families who probably had less money and were packed in even tighter than us.

    The complex was a pile of crap ...

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  5. Anything for a Clean Slate

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    Getting busted with drugs is easy—just jump in a car with ‘em. But that doesn’t stop any of my friends from carrying their drugs everywhere they go. I have one friend who keeps this little Pokémon ball ashtray in his car full of weed. It sits right next ...

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  6. Starting Over

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    My first apartment in Austin was a complete dump. Because I moved from out of state, I found and applied for the apartment online and didn't actually see it until I arrived. When I pulled into the parking lot, my heart sank. The place was shitty (it got demolished ...

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  7. Attacking Austin

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    Instead of splatting the cockroach against the crack of the wall and mopping him up later, I stared, frozen. Another cockroach straight from hell. Ridiculously giant, too. With its antennae feeling around all on their own, it watched me for the next move.

    I could feel my pulse hard. If ...

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  8. The Occupation Will Be Sanitized

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    On Sunday, October 30, 2011, 37 people were arrested by the Austin Police Department at City Hall. The city had issued a memo of rules regarding the use of City Hall on the Friday before the arrests were made. One rule regulated the usage of food tables. Only a night ...

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  9. Traffic is Hell

    Illustration by local tattoo artist Justin Winter

    A couple weeks ago I rolled through a stop sign, coming out of the heavily-Hispanic Southport Drive apartment complex neighborhood, and got pulled over. The stop sign at the intersection of Southport Dr. and Banister Ln. is buried in trees. You can’t see around the corner until you’re ...

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  10. An Interview With Barry Cooper

    Barry Cooper Arrested in Austin, Texas

    Barry Cooper Arrested in Austin, Texas

    Barry Cooper has been called an “ex-cop gone pot activist” about a million times, but that’s only the tip of the buzzwords iceberg. Yes, he released a DVD series called “Never Get Busted” where he describes in incredible detail how and where to ...

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  11. Austin's Dirty Secret: Dillo Dirt

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    A Google search for “ACL 2009” brings up images of people completely coated in a creamy, muddy slop. Before the Austin City Limits Music Festival in 2009, the City redid the Zilker turf, adding a city-made fertilizing product called Dillo Dirt. At the start of the fest, Zilker Park was ...

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  12. Prisons For-Profit in Texas and Beyond

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    When I was first told about privatized prisons, I thought it was one of the most absurd things I had ever heard. The concept of a non-government owned prison that was run like a private business, with a for-profit motive, sounded so inherently corrupt I couldn’t help but laugh ...

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  13. Getting High With Science

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    *“This Herbal Blend is a newly discovered mystic smoke here in the West.” -African Sunset* The first time I hung out with my friend Jared, we smoked some medical marijuana and went to a work meeting. A month later I was in his back yard smoking research chemicals off tin ...

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  14. Austin's STI Habitat

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    We had set the date a couple of days in advance. A handful of vague text messages and less than two minutes of conversation was about all we knew of each other. The girl was more or less a complete stranger. I had met her in about as un-sexual a ...

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