before you died?

Narrator: [Tyler steers the car into the opposite lane and accelerates] What are you doing?

Tyler Durden: Guys, what would you wish you’d done before you died?

Ricky: Paint a self-portrait.

The Mechanic: Build a house.

Tyler Durden: [to Narrator] And you?

Narrator: I don’t know. Turn the wheel now, come on!

Tyler Durden: You have to know the answer to this question! If you died right now, how would you feel about your life?

Narrator: I don’t know, I wouldn’t feel anything good about my life, is that what you want to hear me say? Fine. Come on!

Tyler Durden: Not good enough.

Chron Post: Bankruptcy and the Unforgiving Servants

On the  2010 rise in bankruptcy filings:  my understanding is that there are three major categories of debt that “tip” people over the edge. Credit card debt, made more difficult to vacate after the  2005 BAPCPA change. Student loans, which are  almost impossible to vacate, and  medical debt which is still possible to vacate. With few benefits for bankruptcy relating to student loans or credit card debt,  medical-debt bankruptcy is now the leading cause of the increase. It makes sense as there is little other incentive beyond mortgages, but most people just mail the key in for that.

I was talking to a friend who attended private schools through a masters degree, and in the process, accumulated over 50k in student loans. She negotiated a $100 a month payment on her loans. I pointed out that when you run her numbers through a  debt calculator like the one on CNN money, it returns the error “the amount you plan to spend each month is not enough to ever pay off your loans.”  Ever. If you say you want to pay that debt off in 20 YEARS at 8% her minimum monthly payment would be $415. She has a good job and controls her expenses, but there is no way she can spare over $400 a month. She works in a field that is stable, but with little chance for huge pay increases. The bottom line is, she will never ever pay off this debt and bankruptcy won’t eliminate it.  What is she supposed to do?

My friend is behind the eight ball for life.

For my friend the indentured student, the solution was to not accumulate the debt in the first place! Right? But really, when a private university offered her the loans as a freshman, how many of us would have actually had the clarity of thought to say “No, I don’t see how I can reasonably pay that back based on my economic predictions of the US economy and my likely earning potential five years from now. I’m gonna go back to community college for a few more years.”  Most 18 year olds don’t think like that.


Houston Arts Calendars

UPDATE: After a few days of testing, it seems to me that do713 comes closest to generating a consolidated list of events that I might want to attend. So a tip of the hat to the folks at do713.

Trying to find something interesting to do in Houston tonight? The Vau de Vire SocietyTry these arts calendars. Yes a million different people have tried to make consolidated arts calendars, but until someone figures out how to herd cats get arts people to be more organized, you just gotta hit them individually.

For profit maintained calendars:

  1. Houston Chronicle Entertainment Section
  2. Houston Press Calendar
  3. Facebook – your events (shows ones you said “no” to as well)
  4. Houston Public Radio Arts Calendar
  5. Meetup Events Calendar for Houston

Arts Organizations Calendars

  1. Spacetaker arts calendar
  2. DiverseWorks calendar – downtown area
  3. ArtsHound events calendar
  4. Fresh Arts Coalition – then click “calendar”
  5. Discovery Green Events Calendar

Blogs and stuff

  1. Glasstire Arts Calendar
  2. Caroline Collective Events
  3. Chron Entertainment Blog
  4. “Tonight in Houston” search on twitter (today)
  5. Houstonist Blog
  6. do713 blog on events in Houston
  7. Culture Map Blog
  8. Only in Houston Events Calendar
  9. Art League of Houston

Not so big venues that we like

  1. AvantGarden Houston Calendar
  2. McGonigels Mucky Duck
  3. Fitzgerald’s
  4. St. Arnold Brewery
  5. Block 7 Wine Co


  1. Menil Collection Events
  2. Houston Museum of Fine Arts Programs
  3. Contemporary Arts Museum
  4. Houston Museum of Natural Science Events
  5. Rothko Chapel Calendar
  6. Lawndale Art Center


  1. Houston Center for Photography
  2. Fotofest

Big venues

  1. House of Blues Houston
  2. Reliant Park Calendar
  3. Wortham Center
  4. Miller Outdoor Theater
  5. Cynthia Woods Pavilion
  6. Verizon Theater
  7. Blaffer Gallery at U of H
  8. Orange Show Center for Visionary Arts
  9. Alley Theater

…. DRAFT … let me know what I missed, or misclassified, or where you look for events to do in Houston related to arts and music and I’ll try to get it added.