Local resident Glynn Vrba noticed something on Tuesday, as the Denton Fire Department fought the fire that gutted the Downtown Mini Mall. Yellow caution tape was wrapped around the handle bars of one of the much-debated VBikes (rental bikes unlocked by an app).
"All the negativity around the [VBikes] yet they still did their part during the great square fire of '17," Vrba said.
Denton earned attention in the January edition of The New Yorker. A story ("The Dark Bounty of Texas Oil") calls Denton the most-fracked city in the country. About seven to eight pages in, Austin-based reporter Lawrence Wright quotes Calvin Tillman and Denton environmental activist Ed Soph.
Denton rocker Daniel Markham said it best when it comes to the fierce, fierce tension over Star Wars: The Last Jedi. "Make love, not Star Wars," he said. Agreed. Let there be peace on Earth. Or in a galaxy far, far away.
We looked back over 2017 to find our favorite items from a year in Denton Dammit.
Here's what we think bears repeating:
We think our new city manager Todd Hileman is already fitting into Denton quite nicely. In a sit-down lunch with the Denton Record-Chronicle staff, he said he's a craft beer fanatic and has already stopped into the Bearded Monk for rare brews. Anyone who sneaks in drinking time between 12-hour days and moving across the country is good with us. (March 16)
Longtime Denton residents Eugenia and Bill King lent two very old cars to the upcoming AMC drama The Son (starring Pierce Brosnan). One of the cars is the Kings' 1911 Model T Ford Touring Car. The other is a 1925 Model T Roadster. (April 6)
Sometimes, it helps to have a friend with a bit of a dirty mind. Recently, that person was City Council member Keely Briggs. At a recent council meeting, the council members looked over 54 newly designed signs for downtown Denton. Briggs noticed that one of the designs included an image of the Courthouse on the Square that "looks kind of like a poop emoji." The staff chuckled and acknowledged the design could use a tweak. The full poop emoji discussion (it ends around 5:30:16) is here. (June 14)
Blue Bag Grocery owner Jacob Moses is already scoring some points with the ladies — and maybe some men, too. Moses recently got headlines when he placed a batch of candy bars next to his stock of tampons and pads with a cheeky sign that reads: "The tampon tax sucks — get a free candy bar with your purchase." (Aug. 17) [Note: The shop is now known as Blue Bag Market.]
It's been 615 days since former Denton resident Susan Vaughan tripped and fell on a crack in the sidewalk at the Square. The damage to her front teeth required surgery and follow-up care that cost more than $9,000. After Yvette Spicer tripped and broke her arm a few weeks later, Vaughan began a campaign for the sidewalks to be repaired. Recently, Vaughan was diagnosed with an advanced-stage cancer and she has moved to be closer to family. (Sept. 27)
You had to be near Jody's Fountain near the UNT College of Music to hear it on Monday afternoon. A group of spirited folks gathered at the fountain to shout "Bwahhh!" in the manner of Hank Hill, the animated Texas star of King of the Hill. Don't believe us? Here's a video (you have to scroll down a bit). Participant McKenna Hyde said: "We came. We Bwahhed. We conquered." If you want to learn from the master, this is the definitive Compilation of Bwaah. (Oct. 4)
The RaceTrac on Fort Worth Drive sold a winning lottery ticket for the Texas Two Step game. The winning ticket claims $575,000. The same RaceTrac sold a multimillion-dollar scratch-off ticket in 2014. Hey, no cutting in line, OK? (Oct. 18)
Denton Dammit is an old-fashioned gossip column about people, places and things in and around Denton. Send your submissions to Lucinda Breeding at firstname.lastname@example.org.