BLUE DOG NEON: Just around the corner from the Antique
Lockhart, Part 2
Story & Photos by IRA KENNEDY
You never know what's around the corner until you go there. Even then
you might not really get the whole picture without a little harmless window peeping.
Now don't go calling the law. All I did was peek
through the door-window of the Blue Dog Neon for a look-see. Trust me, taking a
picture of neon lights through a semi-dirty window is dang near impossible so I'll spare
you my attempt.
t was a paradox for certain -- the historic building with its faded
commercial wall paintings housing a business devoted to neon lights. Unfortunately
the place was closed, but if there is one thing I'm really keen on it's neon. Chalk
that quirk up to the time I've spent in honkey-tonks if you like, but I'd fill the house
up with the stuff if I could afford the luxury.
If you've been
keeping up with these tours you've probably noticed that, apart from doorways and porches,
I'm equally fond of old wore out signs like they used to paint on every brick wall
available. Why is it we get so offended by billboards and find these old
advertisements charming? It's a ponder.
Back in Nigel the Land Rover I cruised around and
found myself in the local cemetery. The old headstones are like random pages from a
history book -- well, perhaps footnotes would be more accurate. Normally I get out
and try to locate the oldest marker in the place, but it was past noon and my stomach was
beginning to digest itself.
Just across the street was Kreuz Market, selected by Texas
Monthly as one of the Top Three in Texas Barbeque along with Cooper's in Llano
and Louie Mueller's in Taylor. Kreuz's is a sizeable place but I was looking for
Black's Barbeque. About a block or so back toward the square I picked up the aroma
of barbeque which is pretty much anywhere in town -- just like the smell of oil wells in
Luling (more on that later).
If anyone misses
the signs for Black's they'd better head straight to the eye doctor, providing someone
else is doing the driving. You can't miss it.
Letting Nigel the Land Rover nap in their parking
across the street I stopped and counted no less six signs to the place from one spot.
Now here's a business that knows the value of signage -- especially if you're
trying to lure in the over fifty half-blind customer.
Coincidentally, the owner, Edgar Black was behind the
counter and courteous enough to pause while I took his picture. Black's
made the "Favored Fifty" in the Texas Monthly article, but there's one
comment in their review that confuses me. They wrote: "The sides are numerous but
Along with a barbeque sandwich, I had their potato
salad and pinto beans on the side and here's what I think: They were normal.
Down-home normal. Maybe they weren't inspired but they were authentic. As was their ambiance -- to use a
citified term. ( Hey, even I have to sound intelligent every now and again... )
PAGE 1: LOCKHART / PAGE 2: LOCKHART PT. 2
PAGE 3: LULING / PAGE
4: LULING PT. 2
PAGE 5: FENTRESS / PAGE 6: THE BACKROAD HOME
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