Actually, its almost Monday afternoon musings. The morning almost got away from me before I started this post. As I shared on Friday, I was out of town over the weekend to celebrate my daughter’s graduation and got home late in the afternoon yesterday. That meant that this morning I had to finish unpacking, put my bedroom back in order after the cats had wrecked havoc for two days pulling things out of dresser drawers, play with the dog for a while and visit my horse to let him know I still love him. There are priorities in life, you know. (smile)
While I was in the Dallas area, we went to the Klyde Warren Park that was built near the Nasher Sculpture Center and the Dallas Museum of Art. The park was built as part of the revitalization of the arts district in Dallas, and it is a lovely spot to visit and eat lunch. I was with my daughter and her family and we all really enjoyed the visit, the good food, and the tour through the Nasher. Overall, it was very impressive, except, however, for the use of water.
All of the grounds at the park and the Nasher were covered with lush green grass and a variety of plants and bushes that all need gallons and gallons of water to maintain. In one section of the park, more sod was being laid because the first installment of grass burned up in last summer’s heat, then froze in the bitter winter we had in Texas this year. There was only a sprinkling of native grasses that can thrive on less water and less chemicals.
If the drought in Texas continues, and there is every indication that it will, we need to start focusing on using lots and lots less water. It is past time that we tried to force green lawns and landscaping to survive by dumping precious water on it. Otherwise there may not be water for our grandchildren to drink. Or if there is, a month’s supply of water might cost more than a month of electricity, or even a house payment.
On a more positive note, I read a story in the Dallas Morning News about a wonderful event to be held at the Meyerson Symphony Center this coming Wednesday. It is called “Mr Parker’s Opus” and will honor Michael Parker, an innovative music teacher who started a show chorus long before the television series Glee was even thought of. He taught in a number of schools in Louisiana and Texas before settling at W.T. White in 1999. After forty-plus years as a music teacher, Parker is retiring, but he is leaving quite a legacy. Students who have been in his choirs have said they learned so much more than just songs, and parents praise him for bringing out so much confidence and poise in their children.
Last year, Dallas School Superintendent Mike Miles attended a W.T. White concert, and Miles had already stated that he could only stay about 30 minutes because of another commitment. Miles was so impressed with the polish of the students and the professionalism of the show, he stayed for the entire concert.
This is just another example of the importance of the arts in education.
Lastly, here is a direct link to the television interview I did last Friday before going out of town. The program is East Texas Live, and they have a number of short segments throughout the hour-long show. I was just one of the Friday features.