1. Add sauce to your BBQ.
Texas brisket is juicy enough on its own, so why would you want to mask the taste with BBQ sauce? The style may have started to hide the flavor of old meat with overly spiced sauce, but now that we’re living in the modern age, enjoy your BBQ as it is. Don’t embarrass yourself at Rudy’s.
2. Put chains on your tires.
It’s not as though this isn’t better for your safety in the one-in-a-million chance it ices over in Texas, but you’re setting yourself apart from the crowd. If you’re the only one in the state actually prepared for winter weather, that just makes the rest of us look foolish for canceling schools when it snows half an inch, or calling “sick” into work from fear of driving on the icy roads.
3. Order anything well-done.
This isn’t just a rule for Texas, but as we’re well known for our steaks, why humiliate yourself by implying you have no sense of taste — or prefer shoe leather?
4. Confuse our flag with Chile’s.
Chile has one star. We have the lone star. Chile has more red. We have more blue. Mixing these two flags up will make you the butt of jokes in Texas for years to come.
5. Get indignant when there’s no vegan option at a steakhouse.
Austin, and Texas as a whole, have jumped on the bandwagon of restaurants offering at least one vegan or vegetarian dish. Nevertheless, acting surprised and hurt when you walk into the Big Texan Steak Ranch and learn everything on the menu has grease or beef will just make you look like a hopeless outsider.
6. Claim the food is better in NYC.
No, just no… I don’t care if New York thinks its the epicenter of multiculturalism in the United States. Houston has become the most diverse city, and with all due respect, no one outside of Texas can make respectable Tex-Mex. Via 313 pizza in Austin might have New Yorkers fearing the competition.
7. Drive the speed limit.
Once, as a social experiment, I drove from Austin to San Antonio at 55 mph, staying in the right lane. Even though I was legally a good driver, everyone passed me, from the old guy in the 1982 BMW to the trucker hauling ass. There’s a reason the speed limit out on I-10 gets up to 85 mph; and in truth all Texans have stories about making a journey in an impossible amount of time. Mine? Dallas to Austin, two hours.
8. Ask Texans if they shot J.R. or JFK.
This happened to me in New York a few years ago. Did I even look old enough to make that a serious question? Your guess.
9. Support an out-of-state team.
For anything… For football, don’t be foolish enough to back OU. All those friendly Texans sitting out in the stadium parking lot, drinking Shiner, grilling burgers, and inviting you to join them? They’ll retract that offer if they see you with another team’s colors.