Take a sneak peek at the (fried) food waiting for you at the State Fair of Texas

Fried bacon cinnamon rolls. Texas-fried cookie dough. Deep fried butter.

The Smoky Bacon Margarita takes the smokiness of freshly-cooked bacon and infuses it into a frozen lime margarita. It comes served in a souvenir cup. (Photo courtesy of State Fair of Texas)
The Smoky Bacon Margarita takes the smokiness of freshly-cooked bacon and infuses it into a frozen lime margarita. It comes served in a souvenir cup. (Photo courtesy of State Fair of Texas)

Why yes, we are talking about the one and only State Fair of Texas Big Tex Choice Awards, which has been naming the best foods (like those mentioned above) to be found at the fest ahead of its opening since 2005.

Two awards were given out on Sunday in the final round of the competition that originally drew 51 (mostly fried) entries.

The Best Tasting award went to “Fernie’s Holy Moly Carrot Cake Roly,” a creation conceived by nine-time Big Tex Choice Awards finalist Christy Erpillo.

Wondering what a “carrot cake roly” is? This is how BigTex.com described the “roly” when it announced the winner:

“Golden-baked bread swirled with cinnamon has been flattened and filled with moist carrot cake, plump raisins and crunchy julienned carrots. Rolled with a light coating of cream cheese and then breaded in a mixture of panko, graham crackers, cinnamon and nutmeg.”

And yes, it’s deep fried.

Isaac Rousso took home the Most Creative Award with his Smoky Bacon Margarita:

“With just a hint of smoke, this creation still captures the zesty citrus flavor of a traditional margarita. Finished off with a pinch of bacon crumbles on top, this thirst-quenching drink is served in a collectible souvenir cup for an added funky flair.”

The other finalists included a Chicken fried lobster with champagne gravy, “Cowboy Corn Crunch,” deep fried alligator’s egg nest, fried beer-battered buffalo, the “Lone Star Pork Handle” and “Pretzel-Crusted Pollo Queso.”

Don’t worry about missing out on the competition because all of the creations just mentioned will be available to you at the State Fair of Texas, which runs from Sept. 25 through Oct. 18.

Here is your sneak peek to all the fried goodies awaiting you in Dallas:

Tinder reveals university campuses with most ‘right swipes’

Photo by Laura Skelding
Photo by Laura Skelding

No, the University of Texas is not one of the top 50 universities included in Tinder’s list for the campuses with the most right swipes.

The dating app posted “The Most Swiped-Right Schools” earlier this week using data based on the ratio of right swipes received by each university’s student population.

Though UT consistently scores well in other college rankings, Longhorns were left off the list of the most “right-swiped” students, based on data taken in the spring of 2015 from users between the ages of 18 and 23.

Related: World’s oldest wombat turns 30, seeks love on Tinder

For those who don’t know, users of the Tinder dating app have two choices when browsing potential dates: Swipe right for interested and left for not interested.

Tinder found that Florida State University has the highest rate of right-swiped women while Georgetown University has the highest rate of right-swiped men.

The universities in Texas with the most right-swiped student bodies include Texas Christian University (No. 4 for men), Rice University (No. 13 for men) and Texas Tech University (No. 22 for women). Check out hte

How do you feel about the data, Tinder-using college students of Austin?

Waco student transforms high school parking space into a hilarious homage to Drake

In this June 27, 2015, file photo, Canadian singer Drake performs at the Wireless festival in Finsbury Park, in London. (Photo by Jonathan Short/Invision/AP, File)
In this June 27, 2015, file photo, Canadian singer Drake performs at the Wireless festival in Finsbury Park, in London. (Photo by Jonathan Short/Invision/AP, File)

One Waco high schooler recently found a creative and humorous way to pay homage to Canadian rapper Drake.

Redditor andrewalmond10 posted a photo of a decorated parking space to Reddit on Thursday with the caption, “At my old high school they let the seniors paint their parking spot. This one is my favorite.”

The space was painted over with the student’s license plate information and the words, “If you’re reading this I’m late” to resemble the cover of Drake’s surprise hit album, “If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late.”

The student captured the essence of the cover art to a T, forgoing punctuation and reproducing the sloppy scrawl of the original. The post has garnered enough attention to land it on the homepage of Reddit.

The original poster has answered several questions in the comments section, including the location of the high school. According to andrewalmond10, the school is located in Robinson, a suburb of Waco.

Another Texan Reddit post earlier this summer of a vintage Austin City Limits pass spurred nostalgia in several locals. Drake has also sent Texas some love recently, by showcasing a tweet from southern burger chain Whataburger at OVO Fest.

Kim Kardashian has dethroned Beyonce as most followed Instagram account

Rreality actor Kim Kardashian blows a kiss. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)
Rreality actor Kim Kardashian blows a kiss. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)

Kim Kardashian West dethroned Texas native Beyonce as Queen of Instagram on Monday.

Tech Insider released the official figures and confirmed that Kim K’s 44,005,604 followers indeed surpassed Beyonce’s 43,935,648.

A close examination of the two accounts also revealed that while the two women post similar content (namely – selfies and cute photos of their daughters), Kardashian West posts with a higher frequency than Beyonce, according to Tech Insider.

Additionally, the publication noted that Kardashian West’s photo captions are often longer and more personal, while Beyonce keeps her captions short and sweet, or sometimes forgoes them entirely.

The Kardashian/Jenner clan have a thing for ruling the square-shaped photo app. This summer, Kendall Jenner beat out Kardashian West for most liked ‘gram. Her heart hair selfie surpassed Kim and Kanye’s wedding photo with over 3 million likes in June.

Kardashian West is now triumphant again, but she might not be reigning Instagram for long – pop star Taylor Swift is currently boasting 43,533,226 followers.

A brief history of stock market crashes

Specialist Michael Pistillo, left, works with traders Kevin Lodewick, center, and Timothy Nick on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, Monday, Aug. 24, 2015. U.S. stocks closed sharply lower, with the Dow Jones industrial average down more than 588 points and the Standard & Poor's 500 index now down more than 10 percent off its recent high. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)
Specialist Michael Pistillo, left, works with traders Kevin Lodewick, center, and Timothy Nick on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, Monday, Aug. 24, 2015.  (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

With a tweet and a dramatic cartoon, Chinese state media Xinhua dubbed yesterday’s staggering sale of Chinese shares “Black Monday.”

Headlines everywhere would take up the epithet as market fears around the world led to markets in Europe, North America, Asia and the Middle East closing with losses.

As noted by a number of media sites, it was “Twitter’s first Black Monday,” which inspired us to take a brief look back at the phrase’s 86-year history before it trended on Twitter.

Related reads: Five things to know about the stock market slide

The world’s first “Black Monday,” a day on which the market closed down 12.8 percent, was Oct. 28, 1929. The following day, on Oct. 28, 1929, “Black Tuesday,” more than 16 million shares were traded and the U.S. slipped into the longest-lasting economic downturn in its history, also known as the Great Depression.

Those who refer to 1929’s “Black Monday” instead as the “Great Crash” consider Oct. 19, 1987 to be the real “Black Monday.” On this fateful Monday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 508 points, its worst one-day drop yet.

Other notable crashes include Oct. 27, 1997 (another Monday), in which the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 7.2 percent, and two days in 2008 ahead of the Great Recession: Sept. 29 (yes, a Monday) and Oct. 15. (a Wednesday).

The market also experienced significant dips after reopening after World War I and 9/11, however the instance in 1914 after World War I was partly due to an apple-to-oranges recalculation of 1914 Dow Jones values after a list of 20 new stocks were adopted in 1916.

You can read more about how to contextualize yesterday’s market slide in the history of stock market crashes in Wall Street Journal’s Crash Comparison Chartbook and at CNNMoney’s guide to the financial crashes.

By the way, after a major selloff, yesterday’s “Black Monday” day closed with the Dow gaining more than a hundred points moments after the bell rang, closing down more than 588 points and today, the Dow is up after China’s central bank cut its key interest rate this morning.

WWE Summer Slam produces disappointing finish for wrestling fans

After shocking the wrestling world by snapping The Undertaker’s perfect record at WrestleMania 30 in 2014, Brock Lesnar found himself on the losing side in a controversial finish at the annual Summer Slam pay-per-view event.

NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 23: Brock Lesnar and The Undertaker battle it out at the WWE SummerSlam 2015 at Barclays Center of Brooklyn on August 23, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by JP Yim/Getty Images)
Brock Lesnar and The Undertaker battle it out at the WWE SummerSlam 2015 at Barclays Center of Brooklyn on August 23, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by JP Yim/Getty Images)

The two super stars wrestled in what became a sweaty, bloody and brutal match of raw power and throwback moves. The fog had barely cleared from The Undertaker’s entrance when Lesnar began his attacks on his opponent, still dressed in his signature hat and long coat.

http://twitter.com/mrdavidcgarcia8/status/635758866601369600

Lesnar suffered a cut to his face following a hit into a turnbuckle, but managed to deliver his trademark “F-5” and suplex moves time and time again. The Undertaker tried to gain momentum early in the match, hitting his legendary Tombstone move along with chokeslams. An announcer’s table met its end when Lesnar tossed the Undertaker through it in true TV wrestling fashion.

Powering through, Lesnar was able to tie up his opponent in a Kimura Lock, a move meant to constrict an arm and force a tap-out toe end a match, which the Undertaker did. Except the referee was on the opposite side of the tapping hand and didn’t see. After a confusing ringing of the bell, which led the official to shout at the timekeeper, The Undertaker low-blowed Lesnar and locked him into the “Hell’s Gate” position. As Lesnar began passing out, he raised a finger in a defiant gesture before the bell officially rung with The Undertaker as the winner.

Fans took to Twitter to comment on the ending of the main event.

Despite the ending, there’s little doubt the match challenged both wrestlers physically.

Until then, the highlight of the night was former Daily Show host Jon Stewart taking to the ring with a metal chair during a title-for-title match and hitting the popular John Cena, allowing World Heavyweight Champion Seth Rollins to pick up the U.S. title belt too.

Here are the results of the other matches, with the winners in bold:

  • Randy Orton vs. Sheamus 
  • Prime Time Players vs. Los Matadores VS. Lucha Dragons vs. The New Day
  • Rusev vs. Dolph Ziggler (This match didn’t have a winner due to a double countout.)
  • Stephen Amell and Neville vs. Stardust and King Barrett
  • Ryback vs. Big Show vs. The Miz
  • Bray Wyatt and Luke Harper vs. Dean Ambrose and Roman Reigns
  • John Cena vs. Seth Rollins
  • Team Bella vs. Team B.A.D. vs. Team P.C.B.
  • Kevin Owens vs. Cesaro

And hey, if anything, at least the main event produced this gif.

One of the two first female Rangers is from Texas

After weeks of rigorous training, 96 people are set to graduate today from the Army’s Ranger School, widely considered one of the Army’s most difficult training programs.

In this April 26, 2015, photo, 1st Lt. Shaye Haver, one of the 20 female soldiers, who is among the 400 students who qualified to start Ranger School, tackles the Darby Queen obstacle course, one of the toughest obstacle courses in U.S. Army training, at Fort Benning, in Ga. Haver and Capt. Kristen Griest are the first women to complete the U.S. Army's grueling Ranger School and were scheduled to graduate Friday, Aug. 21, alongside 94 male soldiers at Fort Benning, Ga., families of the soldiers confirmed Wednesday. (Robin Trimarchi/Ledger-Enquirer via AP)
In this April 26, 2015, photo, 1st Lt. Shaye Haver, one of the 20 female soldiers, who is among the 400 students who qualified to start Ranger School, tackles the Darby Queen obstacle course, one of the toughest obstacle courses in U.S. Army training, at Fort Benning, in Ga. Haver and Capt. Kristen Griest are the first women to complete the U.S. Army’s grueling Ranger School and were scheduled to graduate Friday, Aug. 21, alongside 94 male soldiers at Fort Benning, Ga., families of the soldiers confirmed Wednesday. (Robin Trimarchi/Ledger-Enquirer via AP)

Two of those 96 are women, the first female graduates of the school, and one of those two women is a Texan.

1st Lt. Shaye Haver of Copperas Cove, and Capt. Kristen Griest of Orange, Connecticut, made their first public appearances Thursday ahead of their Friday graduation.

“These two soldiers have absolutely earned the respect of every Ranger instructor,” Command Sgt. Major Curtis Arnold told reporters on Thursday in Fort Benning, Ga. “They do not quit and they do not complain.”

Haver is a 25-year-old pilot of Apache helicopters and graduate of West Point. According to the Washington Post, which was the first to publicly identify the two female graduates, Haver is a former cross country runner and graduated in 2008 from Copperas Cove High School.

Haver and Griest became the first women to finish the famously difficult Ranger course after the school became gender-integrated this last spring.

364 soldiers, including 19 women, started the course that began in April.

Second Lt. Zachary Hanger, who attested to how both Haver and Griest would jump in to help carry heavy loads when other male trainees were too fatigued to assist at Thursday’s press conference in Fort Benning, called the women “absolutely physical studs.”

Despite their completion of the rigorous course, something only about 3 percent of Army soldiers accomplish, according to the Associated Press, Army rules still prohibit women from combat.

Those might rules change as soon as this fall, according to Defense Secretary Ash Carter, who said Thursday he will decide by December to open combat positions to qualified women, like Griest and Haver.

Watch a ‘bad lip reading’ of the GOP debate

This combination of photos, from top left, shows Republican presidential candidates Jeb Bush, Ben Carson, Chris Christie, Ted Cruz, Mike Huckabee and from bottom left, John Kasich, Rand Paul, Marco Rubio, Donald Trump and Scott Walker
This combination of photos, from top left, shows Republican presidential candidates Jeb Bush, Ben Carson, Chris Christie, Ted Cruz, Mike Huckabee and from bottom left, John Kasich, Rand Paul, Marco Rubio, Donald Trump and Scott Walker

Ridiculous Internet alert: YouTube’s most prolific bad lip readers have jumped into the 2016 presidential race.

Clarification: The viral video makers behind the bad lip-reading videos of the NFL and “Twilight” have begun using their spoofing talents on the 2016 presidential candidates to bring entertainment and a great deal of nonsense to the race.

If you want to know what the first GOP debate would have looked and sounded like if Mike Huckabee regularly used the word “dope,” if Donald Trump had a French pigeon that he took shopping and if Ben Carson concluded each of his responses by whispering “America” into the mic, watch below:

5 things you might not know about Blue Bell Creameries

A scene from Blue Bell Creameries in Brenham. Credit: Blue Bell
A scene from Blue Bell Creameries in Brenham.
Credit: Blue Bell

Following a listeria outbreak that led to a company-wide production shut down, Blue Bell has announced that they will resume ice cream distribution in Austin and select cities on Aug. 31.

The company recalled about 8 million gallons of its products in April after federal officials linked 10 cases of listeria, including three deaths, to their products.

It’s been an entire summer without Blue Bell, and in that time, fans have gotten antsy. In May, desperate ice cream aficionados took to Craigslist to get their Blue Bell fix. By August, KVUE reported that a group of middle schoolers were so tired of seeing Blue Bell-less shelves on the freezer aisle that they made a rap about it.

However, the long wait may have caused a few former Blue Bell-ers to forget the company that so many Texans hold dear. Out of sight, out of mind … or out of ice cream, as the case may be.

To refresh your memory, here are five fast facts about Blue Bell Creameries:

• It all began in 1907. According to Blue Bell’s website, the original factory in Brenham opened 108 years ago under the name “Brenham Creamery Company.” The location was used to make butter for many years, until the company decided to begin making ice cream, and later changed their name to “Blue Bell Creameries,” after the Texas flower, the website states.

• Some people are so vanilla. According to a survey conducted by Ranker.com, Homemade Vanilla is the most popular flavor of Blue Bell ice cream, with 648 votes. Cookies ‘n Cream came in second, and Strawberries and Homemade Vanilla placed third.

• Blue Bell knows how to party. For the company’s 100th birthday in 2007, the Houston Chronicle reported that Blue Bell loaded up a pair of 18-wheelers with ice cream and company history displays and hit the road to party in 66 cities within their 16-state market.

The creamery also concocted a special flavor to celebrate the occasion, debuting a mixture of Homemade Vanilla swirled with caramel, chocolate, whipped topping and maraschino cherries called Century Sundae.

• Brenham is “Cow Heaven.” In a 2012 interview with Hotel F&B magazine, Blue Bell representative Lacy Sodolak said, ” it takes almost 60,000 cows to supply milk for one day of production at Blue Bell, which is why we like to say that the cows think Brenham is heaven.”

• Decisions, decisions. Over the years, Blue Bell has grown their product selection by leaps and bounds. The Houston Chronicle reported in 2006 that the company then offered 250 different products, from Cookie Cones to Mooo Bars to classic pints and gallons.

While the company stated that production will be slow as factories begin the process of once again churning out product, it’s only a matter of time until ice cream lovers can once again deliberate over their many Blue Bell options in the freezer section.

Meet the 8 deep fried, bacon-topped finalists in the 2015 Big Tex Choice Awards

Cowboy Corn Crunch, created by Isaac Rousso, will be one of the deep fried delicacies available to attendees of the 11th annual Big Tex Choice Awards. All the nominees will also be served at the State Fair of Texas. (Photo courtesy of State Fair of Texas)
Cowboy Corn Crunch, created by Isaac Rousso, will be one of the deep fried delicacies available to attendees of the 11th annual Big Tex Choice Awards. All the nominees will also be served at the State Fair of Texas. (Photo courtesy of State Fair of Texas)

The State Fair of Texas has released the eight candidates up to win this year’s Big Tex Choice Awards, and the stakes look higher (and greasier) than ever.

In years past, everything from deep fried lattes to funnel cake ale to fried bubblegum have taken home prizes in the annual competition for Most Creative and Best Tasting caloric game-changer.

Take a look at the competition for 2015:

• Chicken Fried Lobster with Champagne Gravy — This white collar-esque creation adds a shot of Texas charm to a typically sophisticated dish.

• Cowboy Corn Crunch — A fried combination of sweet corn, jalapeño, cream cheese and bacon. Served in a cone, because why not.

• Deep Fried Alligator’s Egg Nest — Not made of actual alligator eggs, but served in a “nest” of french fries regardless.

• Fernie’s Holy Moly Carrot Cake Roly — A cannoli of carrot cake, cream cheese, cinnamon and graham cracker coating. Also included: two different types of caramel dipping sauces.

• Fried Beer-Battered Buffalo — Served with chipotle sauce and covered in bacon so you can have a side of meat with your meat.

The Smoky Bacon Margarita takes the smokiness of freshly-cooked bacon and infuses it into a frozen lime margarita. It comes served in a souvenir cup. (Photo courtesy of State Fair of Texas)
The Smoky Bacon Margarita takes the smokiness of freshly-cooked bacon and infuses it into a frozen lime margarita. It comes served in a souvenir cup. (Photo courtesy of State Fair of Texas)

• Lone Star Pork Handle — A bone-in pork chop battered in Lone Star Beer-flavored rub. The bone doubles as a convenient carrying handle for added mobility.

• Pretzel-Crusted Pollo Queso — Balls of savory Tex Mex served with jalapeño ranch.

• Smoky Bacon Margarita — Yeah, you read that right. Served in a souvenir cup so you can look back fondly on the experience of drinking bacon-flavored alcohol for years to come.

You can try all of these dishes, and many more (just take a look at the 2014 nominees to get an idea) starting in September. The 2015 State Fair of Texas will run from Sept. 25-Oct. 18. More information about the Big Tex Choice Awards can be found on the State Fair of Texas’ website.