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Not all men are created equal, say the folks at Mayer Labora-tories Inc., makers of MAXX, large-size condoms that have “25 percent, more head room and are 10 percent longer” (we let them do the figuring) than any other on the market. These big guys also have the seal of approval from the FDA and the International Standards Organization for quality and strength. $8.95 for a box of twelve. Call 1-800-356-2926 for a test drive.

THE FISH MAN COMETH

curb Service Since the world is thinking cholesterol-conscious thoughts these days, bow about a little shrimp or snapper to tide you over? Even better, how about having it delivered to your door? Enter Casterline Shrimp Co., deliverers of fresh fish caught on weekly jaunts to Rockport, a tiny Texas coastal town. They net enough shrimp, red snapper, crab, flounder, and oysters to get through the week, and then it’s back to sea again.

These guys know what they’re doing: they’ve got a handful of heavyweight clients like Atlantic Cafe, The Lancers Club, and the Tower Club. And they stand by everything they deliver or your money back. Period.

There’s no minimum order and delivery is free anywhere in town. Call them Monday through Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m., at 742-5010.

Bluebonnets in “Your Own Back Yard

Gardening Forget pansies. Forget petunias. This fall, when you dig up your Flower garden to prepare it for spring, think native Texan. Think official state flower. That’s right, bluebonnets. Thanks to seven years of research and development by Dr. Jerry Parsons of the Texas Agricultural Extension Service in San Antonio, you can buy bluebonnet transplants. And now is the time to plant them.

Neil Sperry, local gardening guru, says that transplantable bluebonnets are the latest development in making home flower-growing easier. Sperry thinks the bluebonnets will really catch on, especially since they come in three colors: white, pink, and blue. They are all-natural colors that Parsons simply isolated.

The new transplants are in right now at most of the larger nurseries in town, like Walton’s Lawn & Garden Center and Wolfe’s Nursery. But be careful, Sperry warns. Bluebonnets are native Texans and therefore tough. If you baby them, they’ll die. In nature they thrive on roadside soils that haven’t been fertilized since the buffalo roamed. So remember, plant them in full sun, underwater them, and don’t fertilize them. If you plant them now, the blooms in the spring should be twice the size of wild bluebonnets.

Fashion-Forward Fabrications

Style Autumn leaves call for a certain amount of nest feathering. And since it’s the fabric that puts the pizazz in any design scheme, here’s our guide to the best sources in town.

Rutherford’s: invaluable design assistance, carefully edited collection of fabrics, plus discontinued Cowtan & Tout textiles previously unavailable at retail. 5647 W. Lovers Lane.

Room Service: Ralph Laurenites love the private label collection here, plus fabulous retro-Western prints, custom slipcovers, and the best fabric for baby’s room in town. 4354 Lovers Lane.

Dazian’s: extra-wide widths of muslin and linen, exotics, animal prints and metallica, trims, feathers, and fringe. Definitely the place for an alternative to the norm. 2014 Commerce.

Fabricadabra: great group of cotton duck in wide widths plus nine colors and pure white. 6073 Forest Lane.

Calico Corners: do-it-yourselfer’s dream. The collection here is varied but good and vast: includes some seconds. Best store is 11411 E. Northwest Hwy. at Jupiter.

Architectural Fabrics: Robert Allen and Howard Kaplan are only a few of the rarely-seen-at-retail designers found here. Great trims. On-site workroom for custom window treatments. 13615 Welch at Alpha, Suite 101.

HAVE HANDS, WILL TRAVEL

The end of a hardday. Your backhurts, your neckis stiff. Yourbody-and yourpsyche-coulduse a littlereadjusting. Twoaspirins and amartini, right?Wrong. We’ve;found something better. LikeSwedish massage by a licensed masseuse. In your home. She comes to you. For $50 an hour. It could change your life. Call Missy Piazza at 739-0010.

VIDEOS

GENRE BUSTERS

Films that blend comedy and gritty, suspenseful realism, pulling viewers all over the psychological map, often fail to find a large audience. But if you’re bored with the predictable, here are four antidotes:



Heathers. Teen suicide is not funny. Offing the reigning teen queen is not funny. But the ra-zor-sharp dialogue in this blackest of black comedies will make youlaugh and think.

After Hours. Grif-fin Dunne is lost in a Manhattan Bermuda Triangle. It’s proof that you can’t go home again, especially with a host of deceptive weirdos getting in the way. A particularly hard-to-forget Rosanna Arquette co-stars as a true urban oddity.



Blue Velvet. The boy-in-the-closet scene may leave you squirming, but the film also won-drously parodies Beaver-esque small-town America. As for Dennis Hopper, who has ever married the comic and the perverse to such effect?



Something Wild. Brace yourself for a shock. Jeff Daniels is perfect as the bland businessman forced to walk the wild side with Melanie Griffith, and Ray Liotta (Field of Dreams) is great as the murderous boyfriend.

Every Nook and Granny

kids On or about the fifteenth of October a quiet sort of panic begins to build for parents everywhere, reaching its peak in the forty-eight hours before All Hallows Eve. It’s that most dreaded of holidays, Halloween. Once again it’s time to come up with excellent costumes for the children in our lives. Strike that-this year they have to be awesome. Nothing as simplistic as a ghost will do, and even Ghostbusters are trite and passe with preschoolers. Most kids have been Tron, Michael Jackson, Madonna, The Phantom, even Spiderman and the Lone Ranger at least once in their Halloween careers, and long, long ago outgrew possibilities like the Sugar Plum Fairy or a simple pirate. So thank God for Denna Reeves, a grandmother of the sort we all need and a woman who has made a talent for creating costumes into a business. After her grandchildren consistently brought home the Halloween prize for best costume, friends begged her to costume the Indians and the pilgrims for school plays. She opened Every Nook & Corner and began making and renting costumes for children and adults seven years ago. Reeves creates custom costumes that cost about $35 to $55, depending on how elaborate the design. If it’s a costume she thinks will rent again, she’ll allow you to rent instead of purchase. Or rent one of the almost forty kids’ costumes that are already displayed at the shop: average rental is $15. Plan ahead: custom orders need to be placed by October 1 for delivery before Halloween. Every Nook & Corner is open from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturdays. From October 1 through Halloween, it’s open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. It’s 12.7 miles from downtown Dallas at 419 E. Main Street, Grand Prairie.

Do-it-Yourself Dog Wash

Pets You’re in your back yard with a scrub brush in one hand, a hose in the other, and a leash under your foot-it’s time to wash the dog. This scene will ultimately wind up in sheer bedlam. You know it. Your dog knows it. And you both wish there was a better way.

Now there is. Canine Country, a pet supply store, obedience training center, and dog wash, makes washing canines simple. This is how it works: you both are taken to an individual stall with bathtub and hose-like showerhead (there are six stalls with varying sizes of bathtubs). You’re left with shampoo (both flea and regular), brushes, combs, nail clippers, a blow dryer, lots of towels, and a disposable apron. You put the dog in the tub, lather him up, rinse, blow dry, and you’re outta there.

The best thing about the dog wash is the price. Taking an average size dog to the groomer could cost from $35-$45. Doing it yourself at Canine Country is only $8. If you want to dip your dog for fleas as well, add another $2. Without a doubt, this is the most hassle-free, affordable way we’ve found to bathe the family pet. 2740 Valwood Pkwy., Suite 131, Farmers Branch. Monday-Friday 10 a.m.-8 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m.-7 p.m. 243-DOGS.

BOOKS



Just when we thought all book catalogues were created equal, Daedalus drops through our mail slot. We were immediately taken with its eclectic offerings from commercial publishers and university presses. We also liked the commingling of egghead esoterica with all-round great reads. Even better are the opinionated blurbs that occasionally pop up in the descriptions. This is a catalogue with attitude. Now for the best part. The prices. Daedalus picks overstocked items from publishers and in turn offers them at drastically reduced prices. Such as:

And the Band Played On, Randy Shilts’s revealing look at AIDS in America, hardbound, for $4.98. (Available over the counter for $25.)

A quality paperback version of Pat Conroy’s bestseller {and one of our favorites) The Prince of Tides, $3.98. Compare to a mass-market paperback for $5.95.

Rembrandt’s Portrait by Charles Mee, $4.98, hardbound. Even if you could find this at local bookstores, it would cost you $19.95.

Daedalus offers books to libraries, bookstores, and individuals. Write them at Daedalus Books, P.O. Box 9132, Hyattsville, MD 20781. or call (301) 779-4224.

The Loofah Salt-Glo Experience

Home Remedies Giving yourself a loofah salt-glo is an experience that’s hard to forget. And it’s not because it’s so luxurious and soothing. (There are no bubbles, oils, or hot towels to the loofah process. We’re talking the no-frills combo of soap, salt, and sponge.) It’s the way it makes your skin feel that’s unforgettable.

First take a nice, warm, lingering bath. Towel off a bit and pile on coarse sea salt all over your body, avoiding any sensitive areas. Next take your loofah and rub the salt into your skin in a circular motion. (This salt-sponge action lifts off dead skin and callouses, leaving you feeling smooth and tingly all over.) Shower, rinse thoroughly, and, for the perfect finish, squeeze on one of Dr. Bronner’s liquid soaps (our favorite is peppermint, but it’s also available in the equally exotic scents of eucalyptus, almond, lavender, and super mild). The sea salt we like is at Crate & Barrel for $7.95, and the loofah ($2.89) and Dr. Bronner’s soaps ($1.85 for the eight-ounce size) are both at Whole Foods Market.



House Wines



Wine In selecting a “house wine,” restaurateurs look for the lowest cost for highest quality. Beyond these criteria, though, your “house wine” should fit your taste, lifestyle, and budget.

John Rector of Sigel’s believes that some of the best-priced wines in the Dallas market today are those from Chile. He recommends a 1988 Chardonnay and a 1985 Cabernet Sauvignon from Cousino Macul, both for $5.79, the 1986 Santa Rita Cabernet Sauvignon 120 for $4.99, and Errazuriz Panquehue Don Maximiano 1985 Reserve for $6.49. All are available at any Sigel’s.

Brian Schmidt of Marty’s agrees withRector about Chilean wines but reminds usnot to forget the old standbys like GuigalCotes du Rhone 1985, which sells for $6.95.He also recommends Lauretan BordeauxBlanc and Bordeaux Rouge, both of the1987 vintage, at $3.95.

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