There’s no need to mention Central Expressway, the state’s busiest freeway. You already know what everybody knows: Don’t bother. You’ll also want to pass on the Lew Sterrett Justice Center. (That’s the county lock-up.) But those aren’t the only things to avoid: 1. August. 2. New building opening parties. Especially before the building has been built. 3. Convenience stores after midnight. The high mortality rate isn’t from the food. 4. The intersection of Montfort Drive and LBJ Freeway at Valley View Center. 5. Those newspaper columnists who specialize in tiresome ponderings about instantly forgettable subjects. 6. All mall parking lots within a week of any holiday. 7. Al fresco dining next to major freeways (like Chip’s on Central). 8. The I-35 and Trinity Mills speed trap where the careless have been caught for more than five years. 9. Quickie check-cashing joints that charge a high percentage and treat you like a criminal. 10. Jaywalking in downtown Dallas. Unlike Manhattan, red really means STOP. Don’t leave home without your lawyer’s phone number. 11. Applying to the Dallas Country Club if you’re over 65. The average 10-year wait and actuarial tables add up to less than good odds even if you survive the cut. 12. Bars with a TV screen bigger than 18 inches and giant restroom mirrors. 13. Goff’s hamburger joint at Lovers Lane and the Tollway, unless you like verbal abuse from owner Harvey Goff. 14. Using the phones during half time at Cowboys games. Long lines of bettors calling bookies are a permanent feature. Also avoid Texas Stadium’s north end zone where sun will burn and blind you during the same sitting. 15. John Niland, ex-Dallas Cowboys football player. For details, call the Dallas Police Department. 16. Banks where you don’t see people. 17. If you are evil, the Apostalic Church in the Faith of Jesus Christ van. The back door script reads: “Sinner Hunting and Devil Driving.” 18. Stock tips from convicted felon Paul Thayer when the former Dallas executive returns from the Fed’s Club Med in Big Spring. Testimonials available from partner-in-crime Billy Bob Harris. 19. Entering the mayor’s race unless you are rich. 20. People who have never been to Oak Cliff, yet who claim to know the real Dallas. 21. People with more than one Herbalife brochure. 22. Trying to get out of the Love Field short-term parking lot at 5 p.m. when all the businessmen are returning home. 23. The ladies room at Guadalajara. 24. Local productions of plays by Samuel Beckett. It’s supposed to baffle you but not the actors. 25. Any Fort Worth cafeteria on Sundays after church. Eating out afterwards is as big a part of religion as the church services are.
26. Places where people discuss racquetball scores.
27. Any place with a radio station van parked in front during happy hour.
28. Places with cutesy names for ribs or barbecued chicken.
29. People who drive cars with all three KVIL bumper stickers. They’re trying too hard.
30. The Walnut Hill branch of the public library system when librarians activate overhead music system.
31. Top of the Dome bar at Reunion Tower. Out-of-town guests wearing matching patent leather belts and shoes feel right at home in the Loveboat cocktail lounge. The price for the view is graciously included in the price of the drinks.
32. Traffic lights on Hillcrest between Lovers Lane and Mockingbird Lane. They are perfectly coordinated so you will catch each of the seven signal lights red, each and every time you drive through this nightmare.
33. The rides on the Midway at Fair Park during the State Fair. Every once in a while, it rains cats and gondolas.
34. Driving through downtown during rush hour, especially on streets where you have to make nine right turns in order to negotiate the one left turn you want.
35. The complete tour of the Kennedy assassination that even takes you to the Parkland Hospital emergency room where the president was pronounced dead.
36. The Dallas Public Library’s computer catalogue if you are computer shy. It isn’t always user-friendly.
37 . Skillman 6 movie theatre. Worse than its own awful genre. Tiny. Tight. Greasy. And plastic, plastic, plastic.
38. Paddle boating at Bachman Lake. Paddling 50 feet away from Love Field’s runway, while jets scream overhead, isn’t our idea of fun.
39. Ginnie Johansen dress-for-success bows. They’re made in Dallas for corporate women who want to assure the world that there’s a woman under that blue suit. But why must she look like a little girl and why must she try to look like everyone else?