Going With the Flow: The next life of Waller Creek

Phillips, Ari
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The Austin Chronicle
In 1982, Joseph Jones published Life on Waller Creek, a meditative book about the University of Texas English professor's decades-long love affair with one of Austin's main urban creeks. For years Jones strolled the creek, taking "inventories" in which he described his thoughts and feelings while picking up trash (some of which he made into art objects) and observing the landscape – a practice that led to his appearance in Richard Linklater's 1991 film, Slacker. In the film, Jones, who had been one of Link professors, talks about the tragedy of life while meandering down a street that crosses Waller Creek. Twenty years later, much of Austin is hardly recognizable – but the area around Waller Creek remains largely unchanged.