Quotable Texas

Edited by Joe Holley

A collection of memorable lines, regretful remarks, and soulful sayings about the Lone Star State

Every Texan has an opinion. And everyone else has an opinion about Texas. Quotable Texas is where these two factions meet to form a rich repository of the piquant thoughts, curious notions, and memorable ideas that have been expressed about Texas through the years.

Texans are people of the word ...

  • eBook
  • 9781595347718
  • Published: April 2021

$9.99

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Every Texan has an opinion. And everyone else has an opinion about Texas. Quotable Texas is where these two factions meet to form a rich repository of the piquant thoughts, curious notions, and memorable ideas that have been expressed about Texas through the years.

Texans are people of the word – written, spoken, sung. That’s not the stereotype, of course. Texans are doers, men and women of action. They’re Davy Crockett swinging Ol’ Betsy as the Alamo falls, Texas Rangers nabbing desperados in the South Texas brush country, cowboys riding rip-snortin’ Brahma bulls on the West Texas prairie, hell-for-leather oilmen punching holes in the earth until they hit the big one. Texas is all those things, but it is also the birthplace and incubator of thoughtful humorists, outlandish artists, outspoken politicians, openhearted writers, soulful musicians, history-making athletes, and history-changing scholars. Whether it’s Sam Houston excoriating his political rivals, the late Molly Ivins satirizing the state legislature or memoirist Mary Karr recounting the eccentricities of small-town life in mid-20th-century East Texas, the denizens of the Lone Star State have no compunction about expressing themselves.

Whatever the hyphenation – African, Anglo, Hispanic, Asian, etc. -- each is a Texan, first and foremost, and Texans have often felt compelled to articulate what that means. That Texanness also prompts outsiders to scratch their heads and try to explain who and what Texans are. They’ve been confounded by Texas since before Texas was a state, and their views are not always complimentary. To quote Steinbeck again, “The word Texas becomes a symbol to everyone in the world.” It’s a symbol that runs the gamut, from love to hate, from disdain to admiration.

Meanwhile, Texans of all stripes enjoy weighing in on the particularities, indeed the peculiarities, of life in this state: the relative merits of Houston, Dallas and Austin; our obsession with football; God and religion; the natural beauty of this state or the lack thereof; sex (or the lack thereof); women’s fashion; Mexican food and barbecue, among numerous other topics large and small.

Quotable Texas is a collection of some of the most memorable lines, regretful remarks, and soulful sayings ever muttered about the Lone Star State or by one of it's descendants. Quotes cover most of the nearly 300 thousand square miles of America's second largest state, from the stark landscape of Big Bend to the great lakes of Austin to the towering pine forests of Houston; categorized in four sections that include quotes from early Texas, all around the different parts of Texas, how the world sees Texas, and how Texans see themselves.

From early explorers like Cabeza de Vaca and Frederick Law Olmstead to famed writers like Cormac McCarthy and Annie Proulx to artists and celebrities like Richard Linklater, Georgia O’Keeffe, Oprah Winfrey, and Beyonce, everyone who's anyone has had something to say. Don't mess with Texas. Everything’s bigger in Texas. And above all else, remember the Alamo.