FRATERNITY GAMES NET CHARITY MONEY FOR

CANCER SOCIETY

BY MICHAEL HINES

DAILY COUGAR STAFF

While fraternities at campuses across the state are responding to charges against them, some UH fraternities spent last weekend involved in charity activities.

Sigma Alpha Tau beat Sigma Chi on Sunday to claim the Pi Kappa Alpha Charity Bowl football championship benefitting the American Cancer Society.

The charity will receive a $400 donation on behalf of SAT and the Pikes.

"We never really thought about which charity we were going to donate the money to," said Tom Johnson, a defensive linebacker and offensive blocker for the SAT team. "We considered other charities, but the American Cancer Society seemed like the right one.

"Three or four of us have had members of our families die from cancer," Johnson said. "It was the only cause that really hit home with us."

Don Dishaw, social chair of the Pike fraternity, said 12 teams paid a $50 entry fee to participate in the organization's first charity tournament since the spring of 1989. The event was held on the intramural fields behind Hofheinz Pavilion Saturday and Sunday.

"It used to be an annual event," Dishaw said. "We used to borrow equipment from the athletic department and we would play full-contact football.

"But insurance problems caused us to cancel the event," he said. "Now we've started another annual charity tournament, only this time it's going to be flag football."

The tournament was limited to UH intramural teams because the university's insurance would not cover outsiders, Dishaw said.

"It was one of our philanthropy projects to induce better involvement and participation by donating the money in their's and our name," he said. "It was a real success. Some organizations donated money and didn't even play."

The only setback the tournament suffered was when the championship game was moved to Robertson Stadium because the UH football team came out for practice Sunday afternoon.

In the competition, SAT, a campus sports organization composing national merit scholars and honors students, came from behind with a late 45-yard touchdown pass from Alan Hinaman to receiver Lane Wiley, and then held Sigma Chi out of the endzone on the final play of the game from the SAT's 2-yard line.

"We came up with the big plays when we had to," Hinaman said.

SAT advanced to the finals with a 23-20 decision over the number-one-seeded Sleepers. Sigma Chi eliminated the host team Pikes with a safety on the final play of the game when the Pikes' center snapped the ball over the quarterback's head and out of the endzone.

"We'd like to thank everyone for coming out," Dishaw said. "We're very appreciative of the teams that participated and made the tournament such a success. Next year we hope to make it even better."

 

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which is surprising since she lives on a block which sees numerous late-night social gatherings. Her neighbors in particular, members of the Flower House, are responsible for a good portion of the merrymaking on the street.

Last year, a magnificent block party centered around the Flower House featured live bands. The next day, P.G. Marino, an ex-Flower House resident, noticed footprints on the ceiling that slam dancing in the wall-to-wall, jam-packed living room had created.

When parties like this are held on Lexington, those attending are not inclined to contain themselves just inside the houses of the party hosts. Instead, they fill the street and lawns of Lexington like they were some kind of distorted festival ground. Groups center around the mandatory beer kegs, in front of the Commune, in front of the House of de Schmog, by their cars, and mostly they center around the bands that commonly perform at Lexington get-togethers.

To Moriarty though, this all seems passive. She has seen many parties on Lexington and many more bizarre events. According to her and other long-time residents of Lexington, the street's golden age of freakishness lies in the past when both the Flower House and the House of de Schmog were more than just dormitories for some of Houston's dedicated underground slackers.

Said Moriarty, these two structures previously housed "The Foxy Lady" photography studios which, theoretically, operated as an open studio where "photographers" could, for a fee, enter and shoot nude women. The HPD didn't buy that setup, and in the late '70s, they raided the houses while Marvin Zindler patiently waited on the front lawn to interview the exiting young ladies struggling to cover themselves with bed sheets and silk robes. The next day, the Eyewitness News reported that two houses of prostitution had been uncovered on Lexington Street.

Enraged, the owner of the establishments set the upstairs area of the present day House of de Schmog on fire and quickly vacated the premises (which gives further unintended meaning to the de Schmog tune "House on Fire"). Brandon Holbrook, "Mr. Versatility" of de Schmog, equates the de Schmog house's past history with some peculiar events that took place last year.

A few months ago, the de Schmog House had a large yellow sign in the window which read "Hong Kong Adult Entertainment." The de Schmog House residents took down this sign after several occurrences where dark and sleazy strangers barged into the house leering at the girls and expecting XXX delights.

As for the next leasers of the Flower House, after "The Foxy Lady" residents departed, according to Moriarty, they simply changed vices. The new neighbor boarded up the windows and set up an illegal gambling casino complete with roulette wheels, poker tables and plastic chips. The block was filled with expensive cars and well-dressed risky types who poured in and out of the casino nightly.

Moriarty says the residents took their furniture out through the windows when they mysteriously abandoned the house one night.

Another Lexington resident, David Chaffin, described the gruesome past history of the house he and his wife lease from Skotak (the majestic landlord and feudal overlord of Lexington who owns a large percentage of the lots on the street, inclulding the Sprawl House, the Commune, the Flower House and the Schmog House). According to Chaffin, a tribe of heroine addicts previously rented his house and left a grotesque mess as evidence of their existence that included blood-splattered walls.

Alas, Chaffin's house is not the only one on Lexington to have been involved in illegal drug activity. The FBI once set up a surveillance squad on Lexington when a known LSD distributor was located there. Today, Commune resident Jeff Nunnally, bassist for Sprawl, insists that drugs are all a thing of the past.

Nowadays, aside from the strange group of personalities associated with the Flower House, the Sprawl House, the House of de Schmog and the Commune, Lexington is a passive, quite urban street. It is shelter to a peaceful little cobbler's shop. It is the sanctuary of ex-Houston Gamblers' cheerleader and over-zealous cat-lover, Lisa Wilson.

 

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It is workspace to painters and carpenters and to a guru meditation clinic. It is all of this tucked away in a shady corner of the inner loop, squeezed into one cozy block. George Stancel, a Skotak layman who does most of the maintenance work on Lexington, agrees that the neighborhood is pleasant. He says he likes all of the Lexingtonians.

Visitors to Lexington would not feel ill at ease. As Andre Burns put it as he waited for his ride out of there, "best block I ever lived on, too bad I gotta go."

As for the resident pride of Lexingtonians, it trickled through their usually impassive nature; evident when they spoke willingly and astutely of the street's past and present, and when they listened attentively to stories of Lexington's past that they had not heard.

The true stories of Lexington Street could fill a bookshelf. It is just a matter of taking the time to write some of these stories down for posterity's sake and to make sure that those who commit ridiculously stupid deeds are never allowed to forget their past.

 

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MEXICAN-AMERICAN STUDIES ENTERTAINS HISPANIC ISSUES

BY GENEVA MARTINEZ

NEWS REPORTER

If you're interested in learning more about your cultural heritage and are concerned with issues facing the Hispanic community, the Mexican-American Student Organization is for you.

MASO has been active at UH since 1974. Since then, membership has steadily increased to its current 130. Composed of students from various Hispanic backgrounds, MASO is interested in the advancement of Mexican Americans and the development of society as a whole.

"MASO welcomes all ideas and opinions on issues affecting the Hispanic population on campus and in the community," said MASO chair Adriana Tames, a senior bilingual education major.

MASO also offers a number of programs for students of all backgrounds. The group has been responsible for bringing in numerous guest lecturers in the past. It will also be sponsoring El Ballet Folklorio, Grupo Quetzacoatl de Mexico, a group of about 40 dancers from Torreon Coah, Mexico.

Lorenzo Cano, professor of Mexican-American urban communities, said he believes the group offers students a chance to improve skills and make professional contacts.

"MASO offers students an opportunity to engage in issues facing their community," he said. "A chance to improve their leadership skills, and a place to meet friends and make further contacts."

UH student Debbie Barrera said the group has made her feel like part of a family. "MASO has given me a sense of belonging in a family-type atmosphere," said Barrera, a senior sociology major.

"We want you to consider MASO a home away from home," said Director of Mexican-American Studies Tatcho Mindiola.

MASO will also be very active in Chicano Week, Sept. 16-20. The group will also sponsor an art exhibit, La Revolucion Mexicana: Sentesis de Nuestra Identidad Nacional (The Mexican Revolution: Synthesis of our National Identity.) The exhibit opens at 7 p.m. tonight in the University Center Regents room. The exhibit is free to the public.

MASO offices are located in Room 323, Agnes Arnold Hall.

 

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COME SEE THE GAME AT THE COOG'S CAFE

BY MICHICA GUILLORY

NEWS REPORTER

The Coog's Cafe is the place to be tonight to see the Cougars blow away the Miami Hurricanes on a 50-inch television screen.

The new cafe, located on the bottom floor of the University Center, also features a full-service bar, a laser disc juke box. The cafe's sports motif is augmented by cable television, including CNN and all the sports channels.

The cafe, which opened the first day of school, replaced Reflections, a table service restaurant.

Management at the Coog's Cafe is prepared for the big game and has made arrangements to add two televisions in the Cougar Den in case of overflow. "I would say the place is going to be packed," said Bill Wentz, general manager of Food Services. "The TV reception is marvelous, and the atmosphere and music are conducive to having a good time. We expect a blast."

There will be no admission fee and Manager Kevin Heath assures there will be plenty of beer.

"The Cougar Cafe opened because we wanted to have lots of appeal to the traffic we have in the building, which is the students," Wentz said. "The opening kind of tied in with the closing of the UC Itza Pizza. This was all planned over a year ago."

The cafe serves hamburgers, chicken sandwiches, pizza and curly fries to accommodate popular student demands. "Food service is always a challenge," Wentz said.

Chia Po Chen, a senior electrical engineering major and bartender at the cafe, says they can make almost any drink. The bartenders are careful, however, not to serve minors. "We check everybody," Chen said.

The cafe already has it share of regular customers. Waitress Noorzalina Muhammad Zain, a senior architecture student, says she gets students from the residence halls as regulars. "I think the music and the television are a major attraction, and I think the bar is, too," Zain said.

Reflections closed in December 1990, primarily because of financial reasons.

"The end result was financial loss," Wentz said. "It served a limited market, mostly faculty and staff. Then the Hilton Hotel opened Barron's and they had two table service restaurants. We had the third and it was excessive."

 

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HOUSTON'S BAD BOYS GOIN' STRAIGHT FOR THE EYE

BY RANDY BAZAN

DAILY COUGAR STAFF

Get ready to rumble!

Like rival street gangs, Houston and Miami will clash tonight in a battle to decide which team is the baddest of the bad boys.

Will it be the Hurricanes, the reigning outlaws of college football; or the Cougars, the NCAA's newest band of marauders?

How Houston responds to the Hurricane challenge will determine whether the Cougars are legitimate contenders for the national championship.

"Winning this ballgame would mean a lot to us, as far as propelling us into the future," said Head Coach John Jenkins.

Of course, it's a big game for Miami, too. Despite the trash talk from Hurricane players, third-year Head Coach Dennis Erickson is not taking the Cougars lightly. He said the Hurricanes must try to control the ball if they are to win.

"I don't think you win many shootouts with Houston," he said. "If it gets up in the 70s, we're in trouble."

Kickoff is at 7 p.m., and the game will be carried live by ESPN.

"If you're a football fan, I don't know how you could possibly miss this game," Erickson said.

Dethroning Miami on its home turf (the Orange Bowl) will be a formidable task for Houston. The Hurricanes have won 38 straight games at home. But Jenkins won't let that faze his team.

"Whatever winning streak that has existed there certainly does not count when we tee it up," Jenkins said. "We've got a heck of a streak ourselves right here in the Astrodome (15 straight) that dates back to 1988. And our guys do understand that whenever we go out to play another game in the Astrodome, we've got to prove it all over again."

By comparing Houston's 45-24 loss to Texas and Miami's 46-3 thrashing of the Longhorns last season, not many members of the media are giving the Cougars much of a chance tonight. However, both coaches dismiss this notion. Erickson said 17 players from last year's team are gone.

"What you did yesterday means nothing for today," Jenkins said. "The fine ballgame Miami played against Texas in the Cotton Bowl was last year's team. No different than Chuck Weatherspoon or Manny Hazard are great players from the past now."

The key to the game for Houston will be how well the offensive line performs. If it gives David Klingler time to throw, Miami could be in trouble. Jenkins said he feels good about his line.

"There were 60-some-odd passes thrown and only one sack (against Louisiana Tech), and that came in the very first series," Jenkins said. "We've got a talented bunch of guys, and depth."

But Tech's pass rush and Miami's pass rush are two different things. Unless the line performs capably, Klingler is going to be on his back for most of the game. Erickson said he will substitute fresh players all night long on the defensive line to keep pressure on Klingler.

"They are difficult to stop," Erickson said. "The key is the pass rush. We've got to slow them down and not give up the big play."

Erickson said Klingler should win the Heisman Trophy. "Just give it to him. Watching him play, he's got to be the leading candidate."

So, who will win the battle of the bad boys? Tune in and find out.

"We'll meet them at the 50-yard line with a chain in one hand and a broken bottle in the other," Jenkins has said.

 

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RECEIVERS DBs BLAZING TRAILS THROUG MIAMI

BY JASON LUTHER

DAILY COUGAR STAFF

It's easy for Miami defensive end Anthony Hamlet to say Cougar quarterback David Klingler is Houston's only good player.

He won't have to chase around guys like John Brown III (JB-3), Tracy Good and Fred Gilbert tonight.

Members of the Miami secondary, however, are not so quick to criticize because they know about the speed of the UH receivers.

"I've watched the films, and they are real good," said senior safety Charles Pharms. "They have a knack for making the big play. They turn small gains into big ones with their speed."

Junior cornerback Ryan McNeil agreed.

"In the Lousiana Tech game, the Houston receivers broke an awful lot of tackles," McNeil said. "If one or two tackles were missed, they were gone."

Keeping up with the outstanding speed of the UH receiving crew will be a difficult task for the Miami secondary, but they won't show up at the Orange Bowl unprepared.

"We've been working all week watching the films and making adjustments," said cornerback Herbert James.

He added that Miami will not drastically change its game plan to adapt to Houston's Run-and-Shoot offense.

Even though the Hurricanes carry tight ends, their pro-set offense is similar to Houston in that they utilize only one back and send out three receivers.

"We run against our offense every day, and it's basically the Run-and-Shoot," said junior free safety and All-America canidate Darryl Williams. "It's not like we've never seen anything like it before."

Williams also runs track for Miami and is consistently clocked at 4.34 in the 40-yard dash. This will not be a case of turtles chasing rabbits.

Of course, intimidation is another factor that must be overcome by anyone who faces Miami.

Houston receivers respect Miami; but enough to be intimidated by them?

Cougar receiver Fred Gilbert says respect has nothing to do with intimidation.

"It's not about intimidation, it's about football," Gilbert said. "They have a quality secondary, and I have tons of respect for the guys. But we're going to attack them the way we attack every opponent."

However, if Hamlet and company attack the offensive line and pressure Klingler like Texas did last year, it will make the secondary's job much easier.

On defense, Miami runs the 4-3 multiple scheme, which is designed to pressure the quarterback.

"This is the kind of game the defensive line loves," James said.

The Hurricanes will try to get a good rush and put pressure on Klingler. If they can do this, then Klingler will have problems finding receivers.

If not, Miami may be in for a long night.

 

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GISLER TOPS AMONG KLINGER'S PROTECTORS

BY JAVIER GONZALEZ

DAILY COUGAR STAFF

MIAMI -- Please excuse Mike Gisler if he is not fully focused on tonight's game against Miami.

The senior offensive guard and All-Southwest Conference performer recently got engaged to marry Lynn Porter, an Alief teacher.

"It has kept me real busy," Gisler said. "It's been a distractrion, but a good one. It has relaxed me."

But Gisler knows what he has to do in the Orange Bowl -- protect quarterback David Klingler. If Houston is to have any kind of success against the Hurricanes, Klingler must have time to find his receivers.

Gisler is the only returning starter on the offensive line. He anchors a line made up of John Morris at left tackle; Jeff Tait at left guard; center Keven Bleier; Gisler at right guard; and Darrell Clapp at right tackle.

Klingler is at ease knowing Gisler has not allowed a sack in 19 of the 23 games he's started -- a remarkable accomplishment considering the Cougars average 60 passing plays a game.

"I don't like getting beat," Gisler said. "I don't like giving up a sack; I hate it."

As a veteran, Gisler has inherited the responsibility of keeping the newcomers on the line from cracking under pressure. Tonight, the pressure will come from the Miami front seven.

"We're a young line, and we have the pressure of playing a good defensive team early," he said. "Usually, we have to wait until Texas, A&M and Baylor to play a good defensive team. But we're going to weather the storm and get better."

Coming in, the Cougars have some extra incentive. Miami defensive end Anthony Hamlet has boasted that if Miami knocked Klingler out of the game, the Cougars have nobody else.

"What got to us was that they said Houston has only one guy and the other 21 don't count," Gisler said. "It made us mad. We're pumped."

Houston will stick to its game plan, Gisler said, using short passes to slow the Miami rush.

A win in Miami, where the Hurricanes have a 38-game win streak, could vault Houston to the top of the polls and a chance at the national title.

"We have to take each game one at a time," said Gisler, trying not to look past Miami. "But we have the potential to be the best thing that's ever been here at UH."

If Houston goes on to win it all, Gisler would reach his ultimate goal -- a national championship.

He has come a long way from his days at Runge High School in Victoria. He was not highly recruited out of high school, and came to Houston in 1987 as a defensive tackle. He moved to offense in 1988.

"I didn't want to make the move because I loved playing defense," Gisler said. "But it was a good move for me because it took advantage of my strength."

After tonight's game, perhaps Hamlet and the rest of the Hurricane defense will realize there is at least one more player wearing Cougar red.

 

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CONFIDENT KLINGLER TAKES AIM ON CANES

BY MIKE ROSEN

DAILY COUGAR STAFF

He's armed with a cannon, he's accurate, elusive and seemingly calm about what could be the biggest game of his college career.

They say it's just another game (number two on your schedule), and to modest UH quarterback David Klingler, it's just that. The second-ranked Miami Hurricanes, with their 38-game home win streak intact at the moment, are what Klingler has in his sites as his next victim -- a passing death.

And as his teammate, nickelback Tyrone Davis also put it, Miami is just another step on the ladder to a national championship.

"It's just another game; the second game of the season, and if we're going to go undefeated we've gotta beat Miami and Illinois and Baylor and (Texas) A&M and on down the road," a relaxed Klingler said to a pool of reporters he's become accustomed to.

No matter how much Klingler and the Cougars deny the significance of this nationally televised game, it's a chance for them to show the nation what they can do against a credible team -- a chance to redeem themselves from last year's loss to Texas.

And even if Klingler doesn't want the Heisman Trophy, award voters could be tempted to mail in their ballots first thing Friday morning if it's a Houston Cougar kind of day. It probably would make a nice door-stop.

In a game where the teams are expected to combine for more than 80 points, Klingler points out the defense will play an equally important role.

"I'd like to think that we've got a good offense, one of the best in the country, and they do, too. So it will be a good game. I think it will be a defensive battle. The team with the best defense, who forces the most turnovers, comes up with the most big plays is going to win the game. So I think it will be more defense than offense that wins the game."

In the three losses UH has sustained in the past two seasons, it was the pressure on former quarterback Andre Ware and Klingler that shut down the MAPO (that's multiple adjusting passing offense). But against the Hurricanes, he's not too worried about weathering the blitz all night.

"I don't think they can send seven guys, at least consistently like (Texas) A&M does. Their defensive makeup has been centered around zones, so any kind of man-to-man coverage will fly with me (literally, perhaps) -- an occasional blitz or two safeties deep to help those guys (Miami DB's) in man-to-man coverage. I think that will be their defensive strategy, and there's no reason to change it because they've had success with it."

Klingler says UH's defense is the toughest he faces all season, and he sees them four or five times a week.

In the Cougars' first game against Louisiana Tech, Klingler dropped back to pass 57 times. Thirty-six of those balls wound up in the arms of Cougar receivers who totalled 510 yards. Nine went for touchdowns, and only once was he sacked; that coming in a slow opening quarter when the Run-and-Shoot was still loading its ammunition.

Now it's up to the offensive line to hold Miami's defensive line, giving Klingler time to find an open receiver.

"They're coming along," he said about his protectors. "I was very pleased with them the first game. They've turned into a good unit. And it's not like this will be the first time we've played a team that has visions of rushing the passer."

While Klingler and the rest of the Cougar offense combined for 702 yards of total offense against Tech, Miami's defense limited Arkansas to 290 yards in their opener -- only 102 through the air. Miami's free safety Darryl Williams made eight tackles and defensive end Rusty Medearis recorded two sacks in their 31-3 win.

Something will have to give tonight, but don't count on it being mild-mannered Klingler who's loaded and ready to fire.

 

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AMBIGUOUS ENTERTAINMENT

BY KILLIAN SWEENEY

 

Many points of interest can undoubtedly be revealed by searching into the past and surveying the present of any given block in the inner city.

Every urban street warrants a history, but few -- in Houston at least -- wear their ancestry or acknowledge their individual culture with recognition and pride.

Among the more eclectic few is Lexington Street, just slightly North of Hwy 59 between Greenbriar Road and Shepherd Drive. What sets Lexington apart as a phenomenon among city streets is a combination of its sinful past and the collage of folks who now abide there. These people constitute a unique caliber of humanity that endures somewhat out of sync with the outside world. Whitney Dunn, a newcomer to the block, described it thus while recruiting volunteers to help her move in, "(Living on Lexington) is like being in a separate world from the rest of reality. It's totally mellow and never lonely." Not all of her new neighbors would agree with her phrasing or her description, but many of Lexington's more bizarre residents do live outside of common reality.

Older residents on Lexington Street, who have seen plenty of neighbors come and go, now share their space with an increasing number of college-age youth who have gathered, several to a house, to save on rent or be near school.

This new generation of Lexingtonians is a gregarious group that slinks about from house to house with little regard for privacy as individuals introduce themselves to one another in an ongoing tradition of hand shakes, pipe passes and beer offerings. This generation is similar in some regards to Lexingtonians of the past.

In the mid '80s, the street was refuge to a somewhat boisterous UH fraternity house and to a "residency of sorts" of Rice University students. Present residents of the former UH frat-house, renamed the Sprawl House, still receive mail addressed to Mr. Phisig Makappa.

The difference between the young Lexingtonians of the past and those of the present is in the un-collegiate activities of the neo-Lexingtonians. The new congregation includes musicians of varying degrees, including the majority of Sprawl, a portion of de Schmog and Peglegasus and an occasional touring band that crashes on Lexington.

Also, a couple of studio engineers, soundmen and technicians, and a scattered number of technical gophers live there.

Club music is a common interest on the street that helps evaporate all the inbred fears of socializing. Few among the group on Lexington remain mysterious for long.

Most of the Lexingtonians previously named or described constitute the tenant list of the Sprawl House, the House of de Schmog, the Flower House (so named for the daisies pasted on the front door) and the Commune. Passage between these four houses is well trodden and Lexingtonians can be seen conversing, or in route, between these residencies at any hour of the day. For Jonathan the Welsh, an expatriate of Britain who now resides in the Commune, the liveliness of the neighborhood makes it easy to meet people, which is one of his justifications for living on the street.

Others on Lexington have similar reasons for sticking around, yet I was surprised at how frequently another answer to the simple question, "Why do you like living on Lexington," was replied.

Naturally, many Lexingtonians said they liked the people and the parties, both of which abound, but others took notice of the freeway, U.S. 59, a few yards away from Lexington Street. It is not the easy freeway access that these Lexingtonians enjoy, but rather the unremitting noise the freeway generates. The Reverent Dave Dove, trombonist for Sprawl, fancies the continuity of noise from freeway traffic. For him, the sound of speeding cars and trucks as they pass by Lexington is a tension reliever like the sound of flowing water. The amber light from a billboard in his backyard pleases him as well. "It turns the backyard yellow," he said.

Long-time resident Marie Moriarty, who has lived on Lexington for 23 years, also likes the sound of 59. Originally, Moriarty is from Atlantic City, NJ, and to her the freeway is like having the Atlantic Ocean right behind her. She says that she likes the placidity of Lexington as well,

which is surprising since she lives on a block which sees numerous late-night social gatherings. Her neighbors in particular, members of the Flower House, are responsible for a good portion of the merrymaking on the street.

Last year, a magnificent block party centered around the Flower House featured live bands. The next day, P.G. Marino, an ex-Flower House resident, noticed footprints on the ceiling that slam dancing in the wall-to-wall, jam-packed living room had created.

When parties like this are held on Lexington, those attending are not inclined to contain themselves just inside the houses of the party hosts. Instead, they fill the street and lawns of Lexington like they were some kind of distorted festival ground. Groups center around the mandatory beer kegs, in front of the Commune, in front of the House of de Schmog, by their cars, and mostly they center around the bands that commonly perform at Lexington get-togethers.

To Moriarty though, this all seems passive. She has seen many parties on Lexington and many more bizarre events. According to her and other long-time residents of Lexington, the street's golden age of freakishness lies in the past when both the Flower House and the House of de Schmog were more than just dormitories for some of Houston's dedicated underground slackers.

Said Moriarty, these two structures previously housed "The Foxy Lady" photography studios which, theoretically, operated as an open studio where "photographers" could, for a fee, enter and shoot nude women. The HPD didn't buy that setup, and in the late '70s, they raided the houses while Marvin Zindler patiently waited on the front lawn to interview the exiting young ladies struggling to cover themselves with bed sheets and silk robes. The next day, the Eyewitness News reported that two houses of prostitution had been uncovered on Lexington Street.

Enraged, the owner of the establishments set the upstairs area of the present day House of de Schmog on fire and quickly vacated the premises (which gives further unintended meaning to the de Schmog tune "House on Fire"). Brandon Holbrook, "Mr. Versatility" of de Schmog, equates the de Schmog house's past history with some peculiar events that took place last year.

A few months ago, the de Schmog House had a large yellow sign in the window which read "Hong Kong Adult Entertainment." The de Schmog House residents took down this sign after several occurrences where dark and sleazy strangers barged into the house leering at the girls and expecting XXX delights.

As for the next leasers of the Flower House, after "The Foxy Lady" residents departed, according to Moriarty, they simply changed vices. The new neighbor boarded up the windows and set up an illegal gambling casino complete with roulette wheels, poker tables and plastic chips. The block was filled with expensive cars and well-dressed risky types who poured in and out of the casino nightly.

Moriarty says the residents took their furniture out through the windows when they mysteriously abandoned the house one night.

Another Lexington resident, David Chaffin, described the gruesome past history of the house he and his wife lease from Skotak (the majestic landlord and feudal overlord of Lexington who owns a large percentage of the lots on the street, inclulding the Sprawl House, the Commune, the Flower House and the Schmog House). According to Chaffin, a tribe of heroine addicts previously rented his house and left a grotesque mess as evidence of their existence that included blood-splattered walls.

Alas, Chaffin's house is not the only one on Lexington to have been involved in illegal drug activity. The FBI once set up a surveillance squad on Lexington when a known LSD distributor was located there. Today, Commune resident Jeff Nunnally, bassist for Sprawl, insists that drugs are all a thing of the past.

Nowadays, aside from the strange group of personalities associated with the Flower House, the Sprawl House, the House of de Schmog and the Commune, Lexington is a passive, quite urban street. It is shelter to a peaceful little cobbler's shop. It is the sanctuary of ex-Houston Gamblers' cheerleader and over-zealous cat-lover, Lisa Wilson.

It is workspace to painters and carpenters and to a guru meditation clinic. It is all of this tucked away in a shady corner of the inner loop, squeezed into one cozy block. George Stancel, a Skotak layman who does most of the maintenance work on Lexington, agrees that the neighborhood is pleasant. He says he likes all of the Lexingtonians.

Visitors to Lexington would not feel ill at ease. As Andre Burns put it as he waited for his ride out of there, "best block I ever lived on, too bad I gotta go."

As for the resident pride of Lexingtonians, it trickled through their usually impassive nature; evident when they spoke willingly and astutely of the street's past and present, and when they listened attentively to stories of Lexington's past that they had not heard.

The true stories of Lexington Street could fill a bookshelf. It is just a matter of taking the time to write some of these stories down for posterity's sake and to make sure that those who commit ridiculously stupid deeds are never allowed to forget their past.

 

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OPTOMETRY FOLKS TAKING EYE CARE TO PANAMA

BY ALFRED CERVANTES

DAILY COUGAR STAFF

Amid the fall semester rush, students and faculty of the UH School of Optometry are taking time out from their busy schedules to help others.

Twenty students and faculty are preparing for a vision screening trip to an Indian reservation in the San Blas area of Panama, where the natives are too poor to afford eye examinations or eyeglasses.

The trip was organized by Marcus Gruver, a second-year optometry student, who grew up in Panama. Gruver visited the region last summer with a church group.

"In August, I took 1,000 pairs of eyeglasses and 1,000 pairs of sunglasses," Gruver said. "We had 184 patients and gave 156 pairs of eyeglasses and handed out all 1,000 pairs of sunglasses in two and a half days."

Gruver's father, Daniel I. Gruver, was a missionary doctor in San Blas for 23 years who developed a four-bed clinic into a 50-bed hospital serving approximately 35,000, the younger Gruver said.

The elder Gruver has told the Kuna Indian Congress his son and others will be making the vision care trip, so any problems that might be encountered once the group reaches Panama may be eliminated, Gruver said.

The San Blas region -- about 50 coral reef islands off the northeast coast of Panama -- is inhabited by the Kuna Indians.

The worst vision problems in Panama are cataracs and ultra-violet-related defects because of the intensity of the solar rays near the equator, Kyle Brodie, second-year optometry student, said. The Indians also have eye problems from dietary deficiencies, Brodie said.

The idea to make the trips came from Dr. David Bernelli, an optometrist from Kansas, who visited San Blas several years ago and saw a need for primary eye care, Gruver said. Bernelli has since donated a few pieces of optometry equipment to be sent to San Blas, Gruver said.

"We will be teaching Mack Preston, a native who has a nursing degree, how to screen vision and operate the equipment.

"The purpose is to teach them to identify main problems and primary eye care, which is just a general examination of the eyes," Gruver said.

Natives are fitted with eyeglasses donated by people in the United States. The strength of the prescription is ready with a lensometer, and the glasses are tagged.

Then the natives are screened and given the closest possible prescription, Gruver said.

"This (the trip) is something we want to build on," Brodie said. "A long-range goal is to get a native to go through optometry school."

The trip will cost each person $600. To help defray expenses, the group is looking for contributions from eye doctors, eye care centers and individuals.

The group also invites others to join them in their quest. Anyone interested who has the money can go and help, said D'Anna Harrison, secretary to the dean of optometry.

Other optometry faculty and students have previously made trips to Mexico for the same purpose, but the earlier excursions were all funded with institutional grants, Gruver said.

Since this year's expedition is privately organized, grants are not available.

"If it goes well, maybe we could get a grant next year," Gruver said.

 

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THREE NEW PARKING LOTS ON WAY

BY ANTON P. MONTANO

 

UH is currently soliciting bids for the construction of three additional parking lots that would increase available student parking by 15 percent, Gerald Hagan, manager of Parking and Transportation Services, said Wednesday.

The Parking and Transportation Services' plan would add an estimated 1,500 new parking spaces to the 10,500 spaces currently available, Hagan said.

"We're hoping the additional 1,500 in the long term will accommodate the most immediate demands of the university," he said.

Three sites are being targeted for construction. An estimated 800 parking spaces are to be built near the Optometry Building, directly across Lot 1A on Calhoun Road. Nearly 520 spaces may be built on Elgin Boulevard, across from Lot 16B. And the economy-outlying Lot 16E at the corner of Elgin and Cullen will be expanded to have an estimated 120 spaces.

"Students are really demanding places that are close up to the campus," Hagan said. "Unless we take up more faculty-staff space or build into our green space, our only option is to extend parking space outward."

Hagan said surveys conducted after the first three weeks of classes last year show Lots 1A, 19B, 18A and 16B are highly congested and in need of relief.

The first three weeks of classes are not included in the survey because the amount of cars on campus is abnormal, Hagan said.

"What we're trying to do is show students that we have alternatives," he said. "Our surveys have shown that we run at about 97 percent capacity at the peak hours during the normal part of the semester.

"We may have 10,000 students fighting for spaces in one lot, but we've always had room in economy-outlying lots for those cars parking illegally," Hagan said.

Hagan said he would not estimate how much the parking

project would cost because he did not want to influence companies bidding for the project.

Approval of the plan to expand student parking space comes after UH Students' Association members unanimously passed a resolution Monday calling for Parking and Transportation Services to present a plan to address parking congestion.

"I've been going to UH since the fall of 1987, and as enrollment has increased, so has the parking problem," said SA Sen. Jay Prince, author of the parking bill. Prince commutes 15 minutes to UH from Northwest Houston.

"The standard opening in every classroom is `Did you find a parking place?'," Prince said. "And what the bill says is that we're tired, and we want something done."

To alleviate parking problems near the UH Law Center, some students have begun parking in the lot of an abandoned business on Calhoun Road, directly across from the law center.

"They've begun parking across the street there, and, as far as I know, it's condemned land," said SA Sen. Matt Bracy, a third-year law student. "The lack of safety over there without any lights or phones is a terrible problem.

"Students come to school and have already bought parking stickers, but can't find a place to park," Bracy said. "I've missed a class because I couldn't find a space."

Hagan said approximately 24,000 parking permits have been issued to UH students, permitting almost 2.4 students per parking space.

"We don't want to stop giving permits," Hagan said. "We do depend on the turnover though because students are on campus about four hours every day. And there are also students who attend classes at night."

The proposed lots on Calhoun and Elgin will cost students $70 a year. The lot at the corner of Elgin and Cullen will be an economy-outlying lot for $10 a year.

 

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