San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

February 12th, 2010
The Weekend: That dreaded (or hoped for) day

021110twotonsTwo Tons of Steel will play Saturday at Riley’s Tavern.

Scene Editor

We suppose it wouldn’t do to just ignore the upcoming unpleasantness on Sunday. One must face these days bravely and acknowledge their presence, even when one feels more than a little disdain for such things.

While it may be true that the day is just a ruse cleverly conceived by card companies and florists and chocolate manufacturers to sell more merchandise, the fact remains that it exists, and to ignore it may endanger one’s relationship with the opposite sex.

Most men won’t care if you forget to give them a Valentine until getting them becomes a competitive sport, which isn’t very likely. However, for women, it is a competitive sport whether they want to admit it or not. Somebody she works with is going to get a diamond or a Bichon Frise puppy or a chocolate spa vacation and she will feel just a little miffed if you gave her the wrong greeting card.

We emphasize the following words sternly and cautiously: even when women say they don’t care about it, they will never turn down a thoughtful gift presented on the day in question. In other words, you’d better get something for your sweetheart, son, or she will count herself as a long suffering, practical woman who doesn’t need such frippery and you thereby owe her something for that, to be determined later. You can’t win for losing, here. You’re better off just getting her a couple of roses, a box of candy and a pretty card.

Some men enjoy the ritual of shopping for their beloved on Valentine’s Day. We say that not because we know any of them, but, mathematically, odds are, when you look at all men, some of them must like it.

Even though it is President’s Day on Monday, we do not suggest you mix these holidays by giving your sweetheart a commemorative plaster bust of George Washington with a little paper heart taped on it. It’s funny, but once again, we caution that romance and funny are very tricky partners who can turn ugly very rapidly. So, don’t give her a penny and nickel taped to a paper heart with the thought of giving her portraits of the president as a Valentine-President’s Day gift.

Surely you have heard of the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre? For years historians have claimed it as a gangland killing. Recently, however, the journals of some of the participants in the event have come to light. It is now thought that those guys were gunned down in Cicero because they ran into the card store at the last minute and hurriedly grabbed the last card on the rack for their beloved, which turned out to be the “For a Special Friend” card. Just sayin’.

All this pressure to do right on Valentine’s Day may be making you feel like a little theater or music could be a nice diversion. San Marcos has got you covered. Here are just a few suggestions.

Friday, February 12

Because of the recent wet weather, the CenturyLink Classic taking place all weekend at Texas State’s Bobcat Field is slightly attenuated. But it’s still going, which means the Texas State softball season is getting underway. Tickets will be available at the gate for $7 and are good for the entire day of purchase, so you’re getting a lot of softball bang for your buck.

The CenturyLink Classic is a five team tournament featuring the teams from Northen Illinois, Oklahoma State, Texas-Arlington (UTA), New Mexico and reigning Southland Conference Champion Texas State. The games should be exciting, and there’s nothing to whet the appetite for spring like softball. Check for further information and game schedules.

True Vineyard Ministries raise funds to take care of African widows and orphans who are survivors of the genocide in Rwanda and other conflicts and health crises. During the weekend, they will sell their famous chocolate covered strawberries at various locations around San Marcos, including Wal-Mart, Central Texas Medical Center (CTMC), First United Methodist Church, Victory Cleaners and Sam’s Wholesale Club. It’s a nice present for a Valentine’s Day recipient, or you could just buy some for yourself and count it as a Valentine for the world.

The rockin’ power pop of Bill Jerram starts out the weekend for Triple Crown (206 North Edward Gary). Jerram is comfortable with classic and southern rock sounds and he’s a great listen by which to start off the weekend at 6 p.m.

We suppose you know the one about the woman whose husband told her that he was sick and tired of her going off to play bingo and it was either him or bingo because she couldn’t have both? “Well, Honey,” she said sadly, “I’m gonna miss ya.”  We aren’t suggesting you ditch your mate for bingo but it might be a fun thing for the both of you this Valentine’s weekend. The Wimberley VFW (Veterans Park on Jacobs Well Road) has a great bingo game on Friday nights at 7 p.m. with concessions sold by the caring women of the Ladies Auxiliary. So you can have your cake and bingo, too.

The EmilyAnn Theatre (1101 FM 2325) is staging the very moving drama by playwright Bernard Pomerance, “The Elephant Man,” at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $15 and should be obtained in advance due to limited seating for the staging.

Texas State’s production of “Vinegar Tom” is a play that addresses some very potent hot-button issues with frankness so be prepared for that when you go to see it tonight at 7:30 p.m. at the Theatre Center on campus. Thoughts will be provoked.

Straying far from the previously mentioned controversial dramas is the Wimberley Players’ production of “1940’s Radio Hour,” a musical production which simulates a World War II Christmas radio broadcast to the troops. Not without its poignancy, the production at the Wimberley Playhouse (450 Old Kyle Road) has its lighter moments mixed with the nostalgia. Tickets are $18, except for tonight’s opening night performance with $25 tickets.

Joel Hoffman Band will regale the lucky patrons at Riley’s Tavern (8894 FM 1102) tonight with a signature blend of rockabilly, pop and country. The telecasters will be casting the quavers at 8:30 p.m.

The Gray Horse Saloon (1904 RR 12) hosts the bluesy funky jams of Earle Browne tonight.  The band’s music is full of chunky guitar work and fluid, smooth blues.

It’s hard to figure out if Guy Forsyth is a real guy or if some mad scientist created him in a lab with an old Robert Johnson record and a few strings from Mojo Nixon’s guitar. There’s a few bits of James Iha in there, and more than a cupful of Los Lobos. After this heady mix simmered for a while, a whole new music was cooked up and Forsyth sprang out of it and then manned the spice rack to make it even tastier. If this all sounds a little weird, it’s because you have to hear him to get it. Get thyself to the Cheatham Street Warehouse (119 Cheatham Street) and dig the wonder. He also has one of the cleverest websites we’ve ever seen at

The Skeletons have a tangy twist of bluegrass in their rockabilly musical cocktail. Their sound moves toward dark tones that gives their rootsy sound a special poignancy, and they are always worth seeing. They’re at Triple Crown tonight with hootin’ and hollerin’ bluegrassy charm of Sasquatch Holler. Mandolinist extraordinaire Nick Wicker plays double duty as he punctuates both bands with his awesome skill.

Saturday, February 13

The CenturyLink Softball classic continues at Texas State all day, starting at 9:30 a.m. with Northern Illinois facing UTA. Remember that when you buy a ticket it is good for the whole day at Bobcat field. Hopefully the weather will be sunny and a little warmer.

If you are contemplating returning to college or going to college for the first time, the San Marcos Library (625 East Hopkins Street) will have free counselors and helpers from 3-6 p.m. today to aid you in figuring out the oceans of paperwork that must be crossed in your educational voyage. Whether you are a senior in high school or a senior citizen, there are folks there to lend you a hand searching for colleges, filling out paperwork and finding scholarships or financial aid.

There is wonderful theater to be had tonight with the controversial “Vinegar Tom” at Texas State, “The Elephant Man” at the EmilyAnn Theatre and the musical “1940’s Radio Hour” at the Wimberley Playhouse.  It’s a true blessing to live in an area that just overflows with musical and theatrical talents.

The Geronimo VFW (Hwy 123) in beautiful downtown Geronimo features the awesome Tom Teboe band for the early Valentine’s Day dance at 7 p.m. Teboe’s band is getting quite the local buzz. Get out your dancing shoes and prepare to swing.

It’s no secret by now that we think Fish Fry Bingo is one of the best things that could have happened to hillbilly bluegrass music in this century. A stellar bunch of musicians at Tantra Coffeehouse (217 West Hopkins) will join in. Appearing with the Bingos is the always toe-tappingly good Crystal Creek Boys, as well as Gray Horse Saloon regulars and all around bluegrass gurus Sasquatch Holler. Rounding out this don’t miss evening is Whistle and Fish.  If you like bluegrass, you will not be disappointed by this gig. Rockers take note: bluegrass was “punk” long before there was anything called punk rock.

Speaking of punk, the country rockers Two Tons of Steel, appearing tonight at Riley’s Tavern, do a mighty fun country cover of the Ramones’ “I Wanna Be Sedated.”  Now, we know they’ve been staple country music goods around here for a long time, but let’s not take them for granted. Like a prime steak, they are seasoned just perfectly.

Dr. G and the Mudcats always play a spirited set at the Cheatham Street Warehouse, and tonight they are joined by the equally spirited Forest Wayne Allen Band. The walls of that old cotton warehouse will vibrate with joy along with these musicians tonight.

Triple Crown features a potpourri of styles with the Organics, the Flatcar Rattlers and The Black Ride. The Organics are a swingin’ rock band. The Flatcar Rattlers, with the addition of a bandoneon player, could sound very much like 16 Horsepower. The Black Ride falls somewhere between garage rock and punk/pop. Three different flavors, all delicious.

The Gray Horse features the dulcet tones of Amber Lucille, whose band plays a smokin’ blend of blues and country. The Gray Horse gigs start around 10 p.m., so you could theoretically hit one of the other great gigs in town and comfortably settle in with Amber Lucille without missing a note.

Sunday, February 14

Well, it’s the dreaded (or hoped for) Valentine’s Day, when the truly in love don’t need the day and everybody else is just uncomfortable. There is the joy of a box of chocolates or the fragrance of roses inherent in the day, but our advice is to fall in love with yourself and buy something nice for yourself like a milkshake or a good CD.

The CenturyLink Softball Classic at Texas State is in its final day, with the softball action starting at 9 a.m. If you were waiting to see the Bobcats, they have two games today — against Oklahoma State at 11:30 a.m. against UTA at 2 p.m.

There are matinees today to delight the afternoon theater-goer. The EmilyAnn Theatre presents its final performance of “The Elephant Man” at 2 p.m. Texas State’s Department of Theatre and Dance also presents a final performance at 2 p.m. of the controversial Caryl Churchill play, “Vinegar Tom.” The Wimberley Players’ nostalgic musical, “1940’s Radio Hour,” will go on at 2:30 p.m.

The Geronimo VFW is hosting a Valentine’s Day dance with a lovely difference, paying particular attention to those women who lost their sweethearts due to war. Klassic Kountry Gold will perform its usual swinging set from 3-6 p.m. The dance has meaning and boot scootin’. Cupid would be proud.

The “First Family of Hill Country music,” the Ash Family, will blend its voices in song at the Cheatham Street Warehouse from 4-8 p.m. The harmonies and songs will cure what ails ya.

If you’ve a mind to do a little singing yourself, the mics are open at Riley’s and Triple Crown. There’s karaoke at the Gray Horse, for those who can’t remember the words.

The XXI Winter Olympics on NBC tonight feature luge, skiing and quite a bit of mesmerizing figure skating. TCM has the perfect Valentine’s Day couple as Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman fall in love, lose each other, find each other again, and then go on to do something good for mankind in “Casablanca.” Ovation honors Black History Month with documentaries on Billie Holiday and Louis Armstrong. They are worth it for the music alone.

Get to bed early, of course, because tomorrow is the best holiday of all — Half-Price Valentine’s Day Candy Day.

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