Friday, December 23, 2011

Silver Bells In Downtown Dallas (Photo/Video)

Intersection Street

My fourth grade teacher was in a festive mood as we neared the Christmas holidays so she put on a record of Christmas carols for us. I'm not sure if such things are allowed nowadays since everyone is so sensitive to every word said, sung, thought or implied - no matter how innocent. Those without innocence cannot see it in others. But thank God times were not so complicated back then.

Main Park Buildings

"Silver Bells" was my teacher's favorite song, one that literally moved her to tears, causing her to leave the room in emotion. I thought that was both funny and ridiculous - and it set my evil mind to work. When I saw her trying to re-enter the room, I set the record back to "Silver Bells" to run her out once again. I've never had any use for useless authority figures.


But since that time I too have cried over "Silver Bells" and Christmas time in the city. I can't put my finger on it, but somewhere in the song's simple joy the music bespeaks an innocent heart and I can almost see the smile with which it was written. Beauty in its purest form. I never liked my fourth grade teacher, but I don't hold her in so much contempt now.

Neiman Tubes2
Famous Neiman Marcus tubes for children to crawl through.

I was hoping for a white Christmas, but looking at the forecast I had to settle for a wet Christmas if anything. I was not alone in photographing the city lights that night. Cameras were flashing all around me and I was even asked a couple of times to take pictures of smiles with scenic backgrounds. In between that I was also accosted a few times from some folks needing a helping hand. (But at no time of the year do I bring my wallet out into the open. Liberal guilt is for yuppies. Donate to a shelter if you want to help.)

Icicle Park

I wish I had gotten more of a Christmas vibe walking the streets of downtown Dallas. The few I did meet were cool but there just wasn't the hustle and bustle needed to make things come alive. It was sort of like putting a Christmas tree up in the basement. To keep myself in the spirit I kept humming "Silver Bells", imagining times now lost of carefree shoppers and wide-eyed children filled with anticipation. Christmas spirit is on life support, choked by the ugly reality we've made.

Bus Seats
Wet seats await bus passengers across from the ritzy Adolphus hotel.

Aching to hear the song once more, I set it to video. Sadly, no version I came across lives up to the version in my head. The singers keep getting in the way! But I hope I can give a couple of extra heartbeats to the shredded fabric of Christmas spirit in this the 21st century of war, famine and greed.

[Insert generic holiday greeting here]!

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