How to spend your Texas Independence Day


Illustration by John Massingill.

Alexandra Hart

Saturday marks the 177th anniversary of the nation of Texas’ independence. And while its run as a sovereign country was far too short-lived, there are ample reasons to celebrate the best state that’s ever existed, with overflowing Lone Star Beer, brisket and state pride.

If you care about Texas at all, you’ll visit the Alamo. Don’t be underwhelmed by the fact that it’s smaller than it looks in movies and pictures, because all kinds of Texan saints including Jim Bowie and William Barret Travis perished here, so it’s hallowed ground. Don’t be one of those jerks who stick gum on the walls, because this is the St. Peter’s Basilica of Texas and nobody likes sacrilege. 

Can’t make the pilgrimage to San Antonio? Fear not, loyal Texan. A fitting celebration can be held in our humble capital.

Start your day by pledging allegiance to the Texas flag. Round up a handful of your friends and cook every kind of stereotypical Texan food you can: brisket, ribs — any barbecue really — breakfast tacos, chili, Tex-Mex and kolaches for those of the Czech-Texan persuasion.

Of age? Don’t you dare allow any beer that isn’t Shiner or any sort of local brew to pass your lips. Dripping Springs Vodka or Tito’s is also acceptable if beer isn’t your thing. 

Talk crap about Santa Anna. Idolize Davy Crockett. Converse about why Texas is the best. If you are new to the state and are unsure of why this is, consult the recent viral BuzzFeed article that conveniently lays out many reasons. If you aren’t new, you should have already learned all this in Texas History class in seventh grade.

Weighed down from all the food? Burn off some calories two-stepping. It is unacceptable to show up without cowboy boots and a pearl snap, but luckily those are not in short supply around here. Present your dance partner with a bouquet of legally picked bluebonnets. Exhibit unwavering southern hospitality.

As your day winds down, listen to Texas country music and admire the big and bright stars here deep in the heart of the state. Try to forget about how disappointing the whole Lance Armstrong thing is, and remember that Beyonce is also from here so that balances things out. Continue to remember that Texas is the best. And don’t forget the Alamo.