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Editors’ note: As we approach our fiftieth anniversary, in February 2023, we will, every week, highlight an important story from our past and offer some perspective on it. “Joe, what are you doing in Houston? The play is in New York.”This was the phone call that launched one of the greatest business stories ever written. The Joe in question was Texas Monthly editor Joe Nocera. On the other end of the line: T. Boone Pickens.The Amarillo oilman, not yet a household name in 1982, was preparing to make a takeover offer for the much larger, Tulsa-based Cities Service Company. Word had leaked, and, in a clever defensive gambit, Cities had turned around and threatened to acquire Pickens’s Mesa. The two companies were locked in mortal combat, with…
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