Home, Interrupted

I received a mysterious text message a few days ago, reading:

There is a Big Secret Art Thing happening in the garage behind [redacted], a tear-down-to-be in a an ugly & uglier section of Montrose.  No one knows about it and no one knows what it means.  Go in & look to your left.  Daylight hours only.  BURN THIS.

So I did what any curious person would do and I did *not* burn the text.  Instead, I held on to it until I could follow its lead and now here I am, sharing it, verbatim, on my blog.  This is what I found in the garage which had belonged to two tenants of six years, tenants who can no longer afford to live in the neighborhood formerly known as Montrose, aka Houston’s “Gayborhood,” which is now being touted as “Lower Westheimer.”

This is what I found:

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Unopened soda cans line the unfinished garage frame.

Unopened soda cans line the unfinished garage frame.

"Left Behind Coffee" by Hank Hancock, circa 2011, curated by Chuck Jackson.

“Left Behind Coffee” by Hank Hancock, circa 2011, curated by Chuck Jackson.

"Found Beer Can In Yard," by Hank Hancock, circa 2010, curated by Chuck Jackson.

“Found Beer Can In Yard,” by Hank Hancock, circa 2010, curated by Chuck Jackson.

"Broken Motor," artist unknown, date unknown.

“Broken Motor,” artist unknown, date unknown.

I am not going to use this space to wax nostalgic about what used to be.  I will not lament the fact that a 20-year resident of this neighborhood–a writer/professor/performer/activist–has now been forced to move outside the Interstate 610 Loop (a “ring road” defining one boundary of Houston) along with his partner of similar credentials, nor that the bungalow they shared for six years, which dates back to the early 20th century, will be torn down to make room for yet another stucco-covered McMansion to be occupied by corporate cookie-cutter people who own too much disposable crap.  I will not express surprise that the property owner has opted to go the McMansion route rather than following the other local trend–putting four townhouse lofts with blank, uninviting facades on the space formerly occupied by a home with an inviting porch.

I will do none of this.  Instead, I will leave you these images, to make of what you will: a home interrupted, transplanted.  May it thrive in its new soil.

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