Very Houston News

Let’s Talk about Tigers and 50 Cent Memes 

Plus, we’re looking at some questionable 'best of' lists.

By Catherine Wendlandt May 14, 2021

A lot of things happen each week in Houston. Sometimes they’re newsy, sometimes ... well, it’s Houston. We’ve collected some of the most interesting gems of the last seven days for your internet perusal. It’s Very Houston News.

What Do Tigers Dream of?

Obviously the craziest story of the week is 9-month-old India the tiger, who caused a stir on Mother’s Day by prowling the front lawn of a West Houston home. 

When neighbors and an off-duty deputy (rightfully) freaked out, a man managed to get the big cat back inside, then loaded her into a white Jeep Cherokee, then sped away from police and got away, according to the Houston Police Department.

That man was 26-year-old Victor Hugo Cuevas, who was out on bond for a 2017 murder case in Fort Bend County, per the Houston Chronicle. Police arrested Cuevas on Monday, but he posted bail Wednesday and was released. India the tiger’s whereabouts are still unknown. 

Ever since India’s striped saga began, seemingly everyone in the country has had something to say about the situation, whether they actually have big cat expertise, bought Houston Zoo memberships (despite his initial claim, Cuevas does not actually work for the zoo), know “Stu’s Song” from The Hangover by heart, or binged Tiger King last year. 

Speaking of Tiger King, even the Netflix show’s star, Carole Baskin, who’s own history with tigers is questionable, weighed in. On Wednesday, Baskin appeared on CNN and blamed the situation on Texas Senators Ted Cruz and John Cornyn, who haven’t signed the Big Cat Public Safety Act, which would restrict big cat ownership. (Baskin is also offering a $5,000 reward for India's safe return, reports KHOU.)

As a reminder (if you actually needed it), it’s illegal to keep a tiger within Houston city limits, confirms HPD. 

Welcome(me) to Houston 

Remember that Bernie Sanders meme from President Joe Biden’s inauguration? Well, now Houston has its own joke. 

On May 4, rap legend 50 Cent announced he had left New York and moved to Houston. In addition to his very cryptic post, he shared a somewhat-amusing photo of himself wearing an Astros cap in front of the Astrodome.  

Well, over the next few days, the Houstonians of the internet did what folks on the internet do best and turned the Grammy-winning rapper into a meme. Suddenly, cut-out images of 50 Cent were popping up at landmarks all over town.

But, he was also spotted doing normal Houston things, too, like visiting the doctor, sneaking in a workout, going out to eat, and even exploring the Houston Museum of Natural Science

50 Cent was a good sport about all of the jokes, though, sharing some of his favorites on social media and writing, “Houston’s showing me a lot of love LOL.”

Bragging Rights and Fighting Words

Houston ranked surprisingly high in several consumer-review-based website surveys this week. 

First off, on Tuesday 17 Houston-area spots were included in Yelp’s “Top 100 Places to Eat in Texas for 2021.” Here’s the highlight reel: The Gypsy Poet in Midtown ranked second, Kat’s BBQ in Santa Fe ranked third, Tony’s Italian Delicatessen in Montgomery ranked fourth, and Robin’s Snowflake Donuts & Cafe in Spring. 

Sure, a few of these places are a little out of reach for Inner-Loopers, but hey, we’re Houstonians—we’re used to driving. 

Then on Wednesday, TripAdvisor named the Theater District’s Lancaster Hotel the ninth-best hotel in the country in its “Travelers’ Choice® Best of the Best Awards for Hotels” list. 

Both of these surveys seemed a little questionable: How can anyone really know definitively what the best restaurant in Texas is? And the Lancaster was the only hotel in TripAdvisor’s Top 10 list that was west of the Mississippi, which we find just a touch suspicious. 

In other news, a different study also ranked Houston as one of the worst BBQ cities in the country, which, as we all know, is an absolute lie

So, who really knows what’s up?

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