Friday, July 06, 2007
Hating Dallas and Other Pastimes
One thing that unites most of the state of Texas is our hatred of the city of Dallas. All the major cities have a gentle rivalry. We compete over which city has the best food or music, which has the best rodeo, or even where the real cowboys belong. But almost everyone will agree that whatever good there is in any city, Dallas is not it. The only time the city starts to have virtues in our eyes is if we add non-Texas cities into the mix.
Our very short trip to Dallas and back has resulted in some very interesting discussion about the city to our north. My favorite encounter has to be the one Bill had with our friend and physician during his physical. Bill told the doctor he had just come back from taking Morgan and I to see the Police in Dallas. Our doctor became very upset.
"Why did Donna and Morgan have to see the police?" he asked. " Why the Dallas police of all things? Why did you have business in Dallas in the first place?" he wanted to know. " I would think you folks would know to stay away from Dallas. Was Donna hurt, or Morgan? Why wasn't I called before you all went off to Dallas of all places?????"
OK, so here are the two great things about that conversation. One, my doctor didn't have a clue that there's a band called The Police. Two, even when Bill explained it to him, he still thought it didn't justify a trip to Dallas. I also have to admire the nerdly complete lack of concern that he hadn't heard of one of the biggest bands from his young adulthood. (He owns a ranch in Round Top not far from Willie Nelson. I'm guessing he would sure know who that is.)
Another interesting conversation was with the very nice lady who is my usual cashier at Kroger. Bill and I stopped at the grocery store to pick up snacks for the drive. It was mostly junk food, and the cashier teased me a bit about it. When I told her we were driving up to Dallas, she completely stopped ringing up my order. Then she looked me right in the eye and with steely determination declared "I HATE DALLAS," while jabbing her finger in the air for emphasis.
I was so appalled that she might think that I was from Dallas that I quickly explained that I was from Ft. Worth and equally hated Dallas. She relaxed somewhat and nodded knowing that the people of Ft. Worth hated Dallas even more than it was despised by the good people of Houston. Like our doctor, she also stated flatly that we were wrong to go there. When I told her we were going to see The Police, and she answered that we should have stuck to seeing them in Houston. "Nothing good comes out of Dallas," she warned me ominously.
By the time we got home everyone had at least one, "This is why I hate Dallas," story. Even my very mild mannered and soft-spoken husband found himself in a hot dispute with one of the natives. Morgan and I, ironically, had a run-in with a traffic cop on our way to the concert. He had made some confusing hand directions and got really mad when we misunderstood him. We both apologized but he continued to yell as we stood on the curb in the rain.
I finally told him, "We're from Houston."
It worked exactly as I thought. He said he should have known that was what was wrong with us. Then, he looked me in the eye and snorted, "I ... Hate .... Houston!"
Sometimes life's funny that way.
(P.S. The photo above is from the Ft. Worth livestock show. At least twice a year they take some cattle through the city streets. I love it. Guess where I think the really cowboys live?)