Like Pleasant Summer Nights, Things Are Looking Brighter for Dallas and The Surrounding Areas.
Welcome to D-Rated, in which we try to determine if the quality of life in Dallas and its surrounding areas is moving up or down by arbitrarily assigning point values to current events.
Our Man Jordan: In a wild finish (for golf anyway), Dallas' own Jordan Spieth won the U.S. Open. I mean, he blew a three-shot lead at one point, but he still won it all when Dustin Johnson whiffed on his final putt. Earlier this year, Spieth won the Masters, too, which means he's already halfway to winning the Grand Slam. That puts him among such rarefied company as Tiger Woods and Jack Nicklaus. Best of all, everybody loves the guy. Listen: It takes a lot to get me interested in golf, but Spieth's doing it with ease. Plus 1.
Leon Tonight: Leon Bridges stopped by The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon ahead of the Tuesday release of his debut Coming Home LP for Columbia Records. It's the Fort Worth native's second late-night appearance but his first for such a big audience. Now the rest of the U.S. (and the world, thanks to YouTube) can see the greatness we've been witnessing locally for the past year-plus. He's already wowed crowds at SXSW and KXT's Barefoot at the Belmont series, but now he's ready for world domination. This weekend, he's playing Glastonbury. Next month, he hits the Montreux Jazz Festival. He doesn't return to Dallas until his sold-out show at the Majestic in November. Plus 1.
Taco Town: Finally, an event at the hideous Main Street Garden that I can get excited about! Sure, you can have your festivals and picnics, but this is truly creative: This weekend’s Taco Libre festival not only features an abundance of glorious tacos, but also live music and some extremely entertaining Lucha Libre wrestling. How great will it be to hear Deep Blue Something belt out “Breakfast at Tiffany's” while you're eating migas? I say pretty great. Plus 2.
Class Act: Turns out, not every law that passed in this year's legislative session has been horrifying. This bill, signed into law by Governor Greg Abbott, decriminalizes truancy. Yes, we need to keep kids in the classroom, but most kids who chronically miss school do so because of hardship, not just because they'd rather be hanging out at home. Getting them entangled in the legal system, which going to school is supposed to help them avoid, usually makes things worse. Levying fines and even jail time never encouraged attendance; those factors just made things harder on families. I probably won't say this often, but thanks Mr. Abbott. Plus 3.
The Real Test: Dallas has finally opened up its backlog of rape kits and begun testing. That's a net positive for many women who have been waiting for justice. But, just like when an inmate gets exonerated for a crime he didn't commit, any excitement here is tempered by the reminder that Dallas has done a piss-poor job of prosecution on this front for decades. Hopefully, we can make things right now as the district attorney's task force works through more than 4,000 untested kits. Plus 3.
Dollar Daze: I'm all for cheaper concert tickets, but sometimes you have unintended consequences for charging just a buck for your show, as J. Cole and a few hundred disappointed fans learned on Sunday. Crowds cracked the code to the secret venue long before the rapper announced the House of Blues as the official on Twitter at 4 p.m. By 5:30, the venue reached its 1,600-seat capacity and hundreds of fed-up fans were turned away. The lesson here: Don't even walk around the corner for a J. Cole show. Minus 1.
This Week’s Count: Plus 9. Nothing particularly egregious happened this week, so enjoy the weather and get ready for July, everyone!
Last Week's Total: Minus 6.
Running Total: Plus 3.
Cover photos via Jordan Spieth's Facebook page.