The 10 Biggest Houston Bummers Of The Decade

Categories: Spaced City
As we noted earlier this week, the fast-approaching end of the first decade of the 21st century brings with it a lot of lists.

Some will be national; this will be strictly local. A lot of great things happened in Houston in the ten years of The Oughts, but a lot of bad things happened too. It's called "life," people.

But what were the ten biggest Houston bummers of the decade? We offer our nominees, not in any particular order.

Marvin Zindler goes to that great, slimy ice machine in the sky.
Since before recorded time, it was always easy to spot a newcomer to Houston -- they were the ones baffled, shocked and amazed by their initial encounter with a Marvin Zindler report. Within weeks, though, they took as completely normal the fact that a news show featured a bewigged, plastic-surgeried shouting person sporting blue-tinted glasses who seemed to be obsessed with the idea that some ice machines in the city got slimy occasionally. Here's his last broadcast, in 2007. Even from his hospital bed, he still fought the good fight against the scourge of dirty ice.

Astroworld shuts its somewhat cheesy gates.
Yes, Astroworld was somewhat of a low-rent Disneyland knockoff, but it was ours, dammit. As we examined in this story, just about every Houstonian has an Astrodome memory, even if it was only ads such as the one above. Others reveled in thoughts of Modville, or Boogie Fog Disco, or any of the desperate attempts Astroworld made to keep up with the times. It did have some cool rides, though, and it was conveniently located to be sure. Since its 2005 closing, despite constat talk of trendy new development, the land it stood on has remained empty.

Tropical Storm Allison: Great fun for some; great hassle for others.
If you experienced Tropical Storm Allison, you still may find yourself, on those occasions when you're on the Katy Freeway between the Shepherd and Washington exits, reminding yourself that if it were June 2001 you'd be at the bottom of 20 or so feet of water. Some areas of the city escaped with little more than a hardy gullywasher; others -- like, say, us -- didn't get off so easy. (The fun was just beginning on that rainy night.) Overall, we'd have to call it a bummer.


The closing of Felix's.
Felix's Restaurant had been a staple of Montrose life since before WWII. There was little warning when a notice went up that it was closed forever, in 2008. Some folks are still reeling.

Passing up Vince Young in the NFL Draft.
The Texas Longhorns hadn't won a championship in ages before Houston's Vince Young came on the scene. When he led them to a BCS title, and when the hapless Texans lost the "Bush Bowl" to get the number-one pick in the draft, nothing was talked about on sports-talk radio other than whether the team should take Young or Reggie Bush. They, of course, took Mario Williams. For a while there, while VY seemed to be fulfilling the underachieving legacy of most Longhorns gone pro, UT fans held their tongues. But the crowing returned with a vengeance this year. Some people may never get over it.

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