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Mojo's (at Guadalupe and 26th) is the last redoubt of the good old slacker-era Austin coffehouses. Once The Drag was an oasis of laid-back places where you could get a cup of decent, cheap coffee, and sit on the front porch all day and just watch the people go by. The tech boom, spiraling real-estate prices, and the general gentrification of Austin have ended those days forever, but somehow Mojo's still remains.

Imagine a small, vintage-era house that's somehow escaped being demolished and turned into a Gap. Fill it with comfy furniture, leftist fliers and Nader stickers, jittery hipsters, and lots of maybe just a little bit too socially concious art, and you've got Mojo's. The crowd's a little older than most other hang-outs in the University of Texas area, not exactly grown-up, but with at least as many turtlnecked grad students discussing literary theory as undergrads cramming for exams and making drug deals.

Of particular note is the fact that most of the side and back walls of the building, and both of the bathrooms inside, are completely covered with elaborate graffiti 'pieces. Wade, the owner, knows most of the graffiti crews in the city, and actively encourages them to use parts of Mojo's as their canvas, a source of constant bewilderment to, and conflict with, the local cops, who can't seem to really wrap their heads around the idea that it's not vandalism if the owner approves.

If you're ever in Austin, stop by, order an Iced Mojo (nobody but the employees know what's in 'em, but they're damned good), and take it all in.

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