Fair Park, Oasis of Existentialism

Hunt Oil Tower, Walking home from El Fenix--my favorite Dallas building (photo by Jerome Sims)

Hunt Oil Tower, Walking home from El Fenix–my favorite Dallas building (photo by Jerome Sims)

Walking home from dinner last night (at the original El Fenix, downtown, across from the new Perot Science Museum), we saw a couple walking their dogs. Hers was missing its right hind leg—well, he didn’t have it, but he didn’t seem to be missing it—a cute Youtube animal. AJS told me about a dog he had seen with only his left front and right hind legs who was able to walk by propelling himself with his tail.

Now there’s pluck!

I was complaining (I hope mostly to myself) about bursitis in my left shoulder and the continuing whatever-it-is pain in my right hip. No bouncing around on two limbs for me! I need a tail.

Earlier in the day we took a walk through Buchanan’s Vintage Market at Grand Place in Fair Park. I, for one was twice surprised. Nothing in the place demanded that I take it home, and we didn’t see any other gay couples poking around.

(They must have been sidetracked by MARDI GRAS TEXAS STYLE 2013 at the Fair Park Automobile Building: “Noon to Midnight, 5 Stages, 28 Bands—Josh Abbott, Max Stalling, Randy Rogers & more!” I’ve never heard of any of those folks, as you can imagine. I discovered Erykah Badu only last week!)

One reason I wanted to go to the Vintage Market is I’ve been looking for a wing-backed chair for my living room. It has to complement the ottoman I finally found after years of looking, and it has to be tall enough to “hide” my cats’ kitty condo climbing box. I found a chair I thought might work. It was the right height, but when I asked AJS if he thought it would work, he pointed out what I had not noticed. The chair

A Corner to Hide

A Corner to Hide

was ugly.

Gay sensibility triumphed. Décor must be what décor must be. It cannot be left to chance.

Mere chance? Then it’s by chance this room is furnished as we see it. It’s an accident that the sofa on the right is a livid green, and that one the left’s wine-red. Mere chance? Well, just try to shift the sofas and you’ll see the difference quick enough (Jean Paul Sartre, No Exit.)

Let me disabuse you of thinking I’m some sort of literatus who would naturally think of Sartre in connection with finding an ugly chair. No, Grand Place at Fair Park itself reminded me of Sartre, and I became an instant existentialist.

But all our guests ask me the same questions. Silly questions. . .  Where’s the torture-chamber. . . They don’t bother their heads about the bathroom requisites, that I can assure you. But after a bit, when they’ve got their nerve back, they start in about their toothbrushes and what-not. Good heavens. . . What, I ask you, would be the point of brushing your teeth? (Sartre, No Exit).

And what does all this have to do with walking home from El Fenix? Or three-legged dogs? Or my bursitis? Nothing. It’s all just existential.

No Exit???

No Exit???

About Harold Knight
Retired English prof, SMU. Old man. Musician. Passionate about justice, equality, freedom. Therefore, I am a fervent supporter of and advocate for the Palestinian People as they struggle to survive genocide. That also means, of course, I have no use for US 45.

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