When you say Dallas, I often think of the prime time soap opera with J.R. Ewing, and the oil and bedroom shenanigans. Nobody thinks of this city as anything upbeat, particularly when our most popular President in modern history was assassinated here. Dallas will forever be that city to all of us who lived through the tragedy. The Dallas soap opera ran from 1978 to 1991, on CBS, Friday nights as I recall. Most people do not know that when the show ended in May, 1991, J.R. was the only character to appear in every episode.
My three plus days in Dallas would be noticeably better if J.R. was around. He might add some interest to this cement city. I am here for NCAA’s Final Four, and the big free Bruce Springsteen concert on Sunday. Too bad J.R. could not be here to introduce The Boss!!! With 357 episodes, Dallas ran as long and as boring as the city itself.
My previous visits here did not temper my attitude toward this city. Yes, they have some decent steaks here. The cowboy hats are big, and the boots are good for sh*t kicking. The Texas gals have a charm about them, in the Daisy Mae manner, if I dare say. Perhaps my disdain for Dallas comes from its obnoxious pro football team, rather “America’s team”, the Cowboys. Often the arch-enemy of our hometown Forty Niners, they have always been a thorn in the side of Bay Area.
Dallas is only the third largest city in Texas, I assume after Houston, and Austin, the capital. The last census in 2010 gave Dallas a population of around 1.3 million. So much for the myth about everything BIG in Texas. It is smaller than the city of Oakland! The greater metro area has about 6.7 million. I am not sure if they are counting cattle as well.
Founded as recently as 1841, Dallas grew primarily because of the major rail lines connecting here. It was first known for leather manufacture, and harness making. Not those kinds of harnesses, Webb! My visits were for trade shows or conventions, which should have been held elsewhere.
Who lived here before Big Tex and his stalwarts? It was the Caddo people, before Spanish colonists invaded. Fast forward to November, 22, 1963, when we became all too familiar with the grassy knoll on Elm Street.
Dallas has 12 Fortune 500 companies. These include: Comerica Bank, ATT, Southworst Airlines, Radio Shack, 7-Eleven, Exxon-Mobil, Kimberly-Clark, Mary Kay, American Airlines, and Frito-Lay. Some famous Dallas-ites, include: Bushes, Melinda Gates, Norah Jones, George McFarland (Spanky), Ross Perot, Aaron Spelling, Jessica Simpson,, Dr. Philth, and Trini Lopez.
I know Dallas for its sports teams, the aforementioned Cowboys, the Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders, the Texas Rangers, and the Mavericks of the NBA. Football is big here. They say the only thing more popular than Friday night football in Texas, is a Texas barbecue with free food, topless dancers, and a pickup truck raffle.
So, Big D is another name for Dallas, and we are not talking cup size. I think the D is more like a grade in the A, B, C, D, F scale. Or how about the Ross Perot Museum of Nature and Science? Perhaps the Eight Track Museum would be a good place to find some old tapes for my Corvair or Falcon? Someone asked about the best time to visit Dallas. I would say, visit after going to Houston, or Austin. You could say you visited the big 3 of Texas, and I am not talking about GM, Ford, and Chrysler.
And don’t forget your passport, Texas is really a foreign country if you come from California.