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Michael Barnes

Social columnist

Michael Barnes writes about Austin's people, places, culture and history. He also writes the Out and About social column and blog.

Latest from Michael Barnes

Behold: The 2017 Austin Critics Table Awards nominees

Posted: a day ago

More than two decades ago, a half dozen ink-stained wretches sat down over obligatory martinis at a 24-hour deli to honor Austin artists. Thus was born the Austin Critics Table Awards, which return to Cap City Comedy Club on Monday, June 5. During the intervening years, artists, critics and award categories have come and gone. One constant...
It’s the end of the ‘Brack’ era
 A lot of babies were born and patients treated during Brackenridge Hospital’s 133-year run, which comes to an end Sunday, May 21. That’s the day all patients will be moved by ambulance from what many Austinites call “Brack” — the current, blocky structure was built in phases between 1969 and 1984 — across...

Posted: 3 days ago

A lot of babies were born and patients treated during Brackenridge Hospital’s 133-year run, which comes to an end Sunday, May 21. That’s the day all patients will be moved by ambulance from what many Austinites call “Brack” — the current, blocky structure was built in phases between 1969 and 1984 — across...
133 YEARS: Austin bids farewell to Brackenridge Hospital
 Jane Dryden Louis retains more memories of the Brackenridge Hospital emergency room than she does of the house in Wilshire Woods where she grew up. That is because for decades her father, Dr. Bud Dryden, was the one of the public hospital’s most loyal physicians. “We never went anywhere without stopping at the emergency room at...

Posted: 4 days ago

Jane Dryden Louis retains more memories of the Brackenridge Hospital emergency room than she does of the house in Wilshire Woods where she grew up. That is because for decades her father, Dr. Bud Dryden, was the one of the public hospital’s most loyal physicians. “We never went anywhere without stopping at the emergency room at...
Austin bids farewell to Brackenridge Hospital after 133 years
 Jane Dryden Louis retains more memories of the Brackenridge Hospital emergency room than she does of the house in Wilshire Woods where she grew up. That is because for decades her father, Dr. Bud Dryden, was the one of the public hospital’s most loyal physicians. “We never went anywhere without stopping at the emergency room at...

Posted: 5 days ago

Jane Dryden Louis retains more memories of the Brackenridge Hospital emergency room than she does of the house in Wilshire Woods where she grew up. That is because for decades her father, Dr. Bud Dryden, was the one of the public hospital’s most loyal physicians. “We never went anywhere without stopping at the emergency room at...
Facebook to the rescue of 1974 photo taken on Austin’s Sixth Street
 The power of Facebook: Within minutes, a posted street photograph taken more than 40 years ago on Austin’s Sixth Street was identified and lionized by multiple readers. We asked: Who is here? This picture came to us from Henry Williams via Debbie Russell as part of her ongoing project to recover the memory of the Old Pecan Street Festival...

Posted: 10 days ago

The power of Facebook: Within minutes, a posted street photograph taken more than 40 years ago on Austin’s Sixth Street was identified and lionized by multiple readers. We asked: Who is here? This picture came to us from Henry Williams via Debbie Russell as part of her ongoing project to recover the memory of the Old Pecan Street Festival...
Gape at more Brack babies, read more of their stories
You’ve seen the earlier samples of Brack babies and their stories, gathered in a sense of history, since the hospital, founded 1884, will close on May 21.

Posted: 11 days ago

You’ve seen the earlier samples of Brack babies and their stories, gathered in a sense of history, since the hospital, founded 1884, will close on May 21.
Send them in: Any Brack baby pictures will do
A clarification: If you were born at Brackenridge Hospital, we want your baby pictures. Any baby pictures to mbarnes@statesman.

Posted: 13 days ago

A clarification: If you were born at Brackenridge Hospital, we want your baby pictures. Any baby pictures to mbarnes@statesman.
No free lunch for People’s Community clinic — and that’s a good thing
 Why does this columnist always stock a reserve of 100 to 150 unbeatable ideas for future newspaper articles? Because I go out and meet the most interesting Austinites and they tell me their stories. It’s that simple. Their tales don’t usually appear in these short, timely social posts, but they almost always land in the paper...

Posted: 13 days ago

Why does this columnist always stock a reserve of 100 to 150 unbeatable ideas for future newspaper articles? Because I go out and meet the most interesting Austinites and they tell me their stories. It’s that simple. Their tales don’t usually appear in these short, timely social posts, but they almost always land in the paper...
The day the Comanches returned to Austin
We live on the the eastern edge of the Comancheria, the empire controlled by the Comanche people for hundreds of years until the late 19th century.

Posted: 13 days ago

We live on the the eastern edge of the Comancheria, the empire controlled by the Comanche people for hundreds of years until the late 19th century.