Beto O'Rourke showed little interest in politics until he turned 30. After he graduated from Columbia University in New York, where he majored in English, he moved into a converted Williamsburg factory with a few musicians and toyed with becoming a writer. Foss (Icelandic for waterfall ) put out two albums, including one called El Paso Pussycats, named after a scuttled 70s sitcom about a group of high school cheerleaders. O’Rourke, who considered himself the afterthought of the group musically (another bandmate went on to tour with Mars Volta), posed on the cover in a ponytail and a dress. Eventually, he outgrew Brooklyn and moved home to El Paso to start an IT company that also published a digital alt-weekly called Stanton Street.