El Arroyo sign weighs in on 2016 presidential election

Photo via Reddit/sHockz
Photo via Reddit/sHockz

For those of you who look to the El Arroyo sign to help guide all of your major decisions, it has finally weighed in on the 2016 presidential election.

The updated sign recently offered its official presidential endorsement, and it’s “nobody.” Instead, the sign proposes that we all “promise real hard to just be cool.” Many who have kept up with the election might agree we’d be better off relying on each other’s ability to remain chill than any alternative.

We assume the non-endorsement came about after potential candidates failed to heed the restaurant’s April request:

We’re raising a dollar-margarita to “being cool,” and hoping for the best come November…

READ: El Arroyo puts up Beyoncé reference on front sign

READ: El Arroyo’s sign has weighed in on chatter about Mack Brown and Baylor

This Yeti billboard knows the Austin struggle

Picture via Reddit/honky_magoo14

Fast-growing premium cooler company Yeti gets what it’s like to live in just as fast-growing Austin.

A new billboard on South Congress Ave. both touts the Austin brand’s extreme cooling capabilities (it’s almost like you start to miss melted ice) and comments on the city’s ever-increasing, ever-painful rising cost of rent. And living. And food. And have you guys been to the movies lately?

According to a recent list by GoBankingRates, Austin’s necessary income to live “comfortably” is the 12th-highest of all major U.S. cities. That means if you’re making the median household income in Austin of $55,216, you should have $1,000 of extra spending money at the end of every year.

Almost enough to buy a Yeti cooler…

READ: Austin’s Yeti to move into new Austin HQ

READ: Are these the ‘7 stages of living in Austin’?

Smells like Texas spirit: 20 scents that will remind you of the Lone Star state

Bluebonnets grow along a county road between Spicewood, Texas and Lake Travis. LAURA SKELDING/AMERICAN-STATESMAN
Bluebonnets grow along a county road between Spicewood, Texas and Lake Travis. LAURA SKELDING/AMERICAN-STATESMAN

It’s only natural to become homesick the second you leave our great state of Texas. Who can blame you when there are so many things to love?

The “Texas Homesick Candle” emits a fragrance that includes leather, fresh cotton and sage. Photo via Homesick Candles.

And they say our sense of smell is linked closely with memory which is probably why a number of people have tried to capture the Lone Star state’s scent and put it into a candle.  There’s this “Texas Homesick Candle” that smells like leather, fresh cotton and sage. There are also these candles by UT alumna Pam Kuhl-Linscomb named after Texas cities or True Texas Scents on Etsy that include scents like Amaretto and sagebrush.

But even with all these nostalgia-inducing scents, we thought some iconic smells were missing. Here are the Texas fragrances we’d also opt to put into our candles:

1. Barbecue. The aroma of freshly cooked meats is more than welcome in our homes.

2. Little Texas Mountain Laurels.

3. All the smells of the State Fair. Basically anything deep fried, from funnel cakes to turkey legs.

4. Tobacco. Specifically the chewing kind.

5. Sweet Tea and all its sugary glory.

6. Diesel because we all grew up around large trucks and probably still have one in the family.

7. In fact, let’s just amp that Diesel up to the scent of oil. It’s everywhere here.

8. Bluebonnets, obviously.

9. The odiously cheesy scent of queso. Or all Tex-Mex scents really. Imagine a candle that smelled like tortillas on a hot stove. Yum.

10. Some smoky hints of gun powder.

11. Fresh Whataburger. You’d probably crave the fast food everyday.

12. Rain in the summer. When it’s not unbearably dry at least.

13. Shiner beer, with tinges of prickly pear and strawberry blonde.

14. Scents of the ocean because Texas has quite a few iconic beaches, from Galveston to South Padre Island.

15. Livestock. Not a pretty thought but we are the Longhorn state.

16. Whiskey.

17.  Pecans. Pecan trees, pecan pies, pecan candles…

18. Crops. Really just the smell of fresh outdoors not ridden with city smells.

19. Chili.

20. And considering Texas’ funky weather, if we make a candle that could emit the scents of every season in the course of a burn, that’d be ideal.

Of course not all of these would make for appealing fragrances but home is where the heart is — not the nose.

Watch: Last living 9/11 search dog saluted while walking into Texas vet office for the last time

via Youtube
via Youtube

With firefighters flanked on either side saluting, a 16-year-old dog from Houston walked into a veterinary clinic in Cypress to be euthanized Monday. The golden retriever, Bretagne, was the last known living search dog who responded after the 9/11 terrorist attacks and helped locate human remains in the rubble, the Associated Press reports.

Bretagne was 2 years old when she and handler Denise Corliss were sent to the World Trade Center site where they spent 10 days searching through the rubble. She was nominated for a Hero Dog Award by the American Humane Association in 2014, and met with former President George H.W. Bush  last year.

Texas Task Force 1, to which Bretagne belonged, took to Facebook to share pictures of the animal and share a message: “Rest in peace girl. We have it from here.”

An American flag was draped over Bretagne’s body when she was carried from the veterinary clinic during what CNN called a “hero’s farewell.”

READ: Last living 9/11 rescue dog celebrates birthday with hero’s welcome in NYC

‘7 stages of living in Austin’ — do you agree?

As the sun rises on the city of Austin, people run and cycle along the boardwalk over Lady Bird Lake while others fish nearby. With sunny skies, temperatures are expected to reach a high of 92 Monday, March 14, 2016. LAURA SKELDING/AMERICAN-STATESMAN
As the sun rises on the city of Austin, people run and cycle along the boardwalk over Lady Bird Lake while others fish nearby. With sunny skies, temperatures are expected to reach a high of 92 Monday, March 14, 2016. LAURA SKELDING/AMERICAN-STATESMAN

It’s inarguable — “moving to Austin” is having a moment. As the fastest growing metropolitan area in the country, Austin continues to entice waves of newcomers to pack up, sweat it out and settle into a Central Texas lifestyle.

But are all of these transplants ready for what living in Austin really entails? There’s more to life in the 5-1-2 than paddle boarding. Kayaking, for instance, and what you’re going to eat after you’ve finished kayaking.

According to Thrillist, there are seven stages of adjusting to life in Austin (Disclaimer: Not all involve sunshine and recreational water activities):

  • Stage 1 “Honeymoon stage.” You made it! There are so many things you haven’t tried and now’s the time to try them all at once. Everything is magic including your new, very expensive, apartment.
  • Stage 2 “Wannabe stage.” If you could only convince everyone else that you belong here just as much as any native Austinite. According to Thrillist, this is the stage in which you stop frequenting Sixth Street and start hitting up some of the hipper East Side bars.
  • Stage 3 “Legit local stage.” You’re renting a house now, with a real backyard, and now that you’ve “stopped boasting about being a local, you’ve actually become one.” At this point in your adjustment your go-to activity is “anything free.”
  • Stage 4 “Constantly complaining about everything stage.” What better way to let others know how much you belong than to constantly complain about everything going on around you? Traffic, heat, expenses. At this point your “life outlook has shifted from Shiner Bock half-full to Shiner Bock half-empty.”
  • Stage 5 “The Austinite mid-life crisis.” This is a major turning point in an Austin transplant’s life. According to Thrillist, you only stop asking yourself what you’re doing with your life long enough to realize, “You’re old and alone with your shelter animals in a studio apartment that smells like old brisket.”
  • Stage 6 “You actually left stage.” As Austinites through-and-through, we can’t attest to this particular stage, but Thrillest claims the “big business and gentrification” are enough for some to finally get up, get out, and prepare for a major case of FOMO.
  • Stage 7 “Honey, I’m home.” Why does one leave if not to return? You’ve moved back and into the most affordable place you’ve ever lived in Austin. You continue to assure yourself that, “It’s better than Dallas,” and every other city is “equally intolerable.”

Welcome home, Austinite. Get out on that lake and kayak.

Hacked electronic traffic sign in Dallas says ‘Gorilla deserved it’

FILE - This June 20, 2015 file photo provided by the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden shows Harambe, a western lowland gorilla, who was fatally shot Saturday, May 28, 2016, to protect a 3-year-old boy who had entered its exhibit. When the 400-pound gorilla grabbed the 3-year-old boy, the sharpshooter who killed the ape wasn't police but a specially trained zoo staffer on one of the many dangerous-animal emergency squads at animal parks around the country. (Jeff McCurry/Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden via The Cincinatti Enquirer via AP, File)
FILE – This June 20, 2015 file photo provided by the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden shows Harambe, a western lowland gorilla, who was fatally shot Saturday, May 28, 2016, to protect a 3-year-old boy who had entered its exhibit.  (Jeff McCurry/Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden via The Cincinatti Enquirer via AP, File)

CBSDFW tweeted a photo of a Texas Department of Transportation traffic sign Sunday morning that had been hacked to say “Gorilla deserved it.”

Changed over night, the Dallas sign is located on Cedar Springs and seems to be a reference to the shooting of a 400-pound gorilla named Harambe at the Cincinnati Zoo in May. The gorilla was fatally shot by zoo authorities after a 3-year-old boy fell into its enclosure.

Apparently, that’s not the only case of hacked signs in Dallas lately. To read more about the numerous signs that are being changed around the city, go here.

Austin couple stages murder-themed engagement shoot in Zilker Park

It’s been said that love means never having to say you’re sorry. For one Austin couple, it also means always agreeing to help hide a body if your partner just murdered someone.

Shi Jarmillo and Patrick Reetz took a stroll through Zilker Park last month for their engagement photo shoot, the San Antonio Express-News reports. Their photos were just like other engagement photos— pictures of an engagement ring, lots of hand-holding, a little PDA.

The only difference? Those holding hands were covered in fake blood, and the two happily hid a fake dead body all around the park as a part of their murder-themed shoot.

Shi Jarmillo and Patrick Reetz in Zilker Park. (Asha Poyzer, Courtesy of Facebook. Used with permission.)
Patrick Reetz and Shi Jarmillo in  Zilker Park. (Asha Poyzer/Courtesy of Facebook. Used with permission.)

“You kind of get tired of seeing the same old pictures on Facebook and we didn’t want to be stereotypical,” Jarmillo told the Express-News. “If you can’t trust your significant other to hide a body with you, then you probably shouldn’t get married.”

The photo shoot not only featured a fake dead body (a life-size doll named Jorge), but also included sharp knives and the aforementioned fake blood. Reetz, who plays in the Austin band Constellation Prize, can be seen wielding a hatchet in one of the photos.

“I’m surprised no one called the cops,” Jarmillo said.

The couple met on OkCupid in 2014, and plans to wed on Sept. 11, in an effort to subvert that day’s negative connotation. The wedding will be murder-themed as well, with red, black and white colors and “anatomy parts on a mountain of red roses” for centerpieces.

Who says love is dead? See the rest of the photos at the San Antonio Express-News.

Texas girl receives doll with prosthetic leg and her reaction is heart-wrenching


Press play and cue the water works because this viral video of a little girl and her doll is going to make you feel some type of way.

Emma Bennett, who has a prosthetic leg, was sitting in her home near Houston when her family walked in with a surprise for her: an American Girl Doll just like her. Thanks to A Step Ahead Prosthetics, her parents were able to get her a doll with a prosthetic leg.

Her mother, Courtney Fletcher Bennett, posted a video of Emma with her doll yesterday that went viral with more than 1.4 million views. In the video, Emma bursts into tears of joy, saying “thank you for making a doll like me.”

To read more about Bennet, her family and her doll, visit WFAA. 

Watch this awesome drone footage of the Medina Lake spillway

All this rain Texas has been getting is a good thing for Medina Lake. The reservoir located on the Medina River in the Hill Country had been at 1,053 feet on May 24, and had been completely dry not too long ago.

Then, on Tuesday morning at 4 a.m., the lake crossed over the spillway at 1,064.57 feet, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Flood stage is 1,064.2 feet.

Medina River at Medina Lake


The Medina Lake Water Facebook page shared drone footage of the spillway Tuesday morning.

Facebook commenters were in awe at seeing the water rush over the spillway.

“Can’t believe it’s full. It was a dry canyon not to [sic] long ago,” Ruben Berlanga wrote.

It is hard to believe that just a year and a half ago [I] walked into the middle of that lake. It was bone dry!!!!” Elizabeth Smith wrote.

As of this writing,the video has been shared more than 11,500 times.



Texas selfie statue strikes off note with residents

via Mashable
via Mashable/Reddit

Now it’s not just the real, live selfie-takers you’ll have to step around when passing through Sugar Land’s town square.

A new statue erected in the plaza captures what a selfie looks like off-screen — and people don’t like it. The bronze sculpture shows 2 young-looking women, forever crouched mid-selfie and, according to KXAN, is part of a series of pieces that depict “common activities in the plaza.”

Although many social media users posted about their disappointment in how taxpayers’ money was being allocated, the statues were actually donated by a resident, Mashable reports.


What do you think? Are selfies better left to their one, filtered medium? Or is the piece “good art” because it, as Refinery 29 says, it “drives public conversation”?

PHOTOS: Best selfie spots around Austin