This week’s column writing duties are being performed with my trusty laptop from the Birmingham airport. Found a cozy little spot near a sunny window to plug into for a spell. I’m waiting for our son’s lovely girlfriend. When Kate deplanes in a few hours, we’ll mosey on down the highway to Montgomery, Alabama for Air Force pomp and circumstance ceremonies. Our son, Ricky, will finally receive his “butter bars.” Hmmm … butter and bars … an interesting word combination. It reminds me of all that holiday baking last weekend – slinging, among other ingredients flour, sugar, real butter, bittersweet chocolate chips and vanilla extract all over the kitchen. My apron may never be the same. It is kinda quiet in the airport at the moment except for that annoying TSA recording every few minutes, reminding travelers to keep track of their personal belongings and luggage. I mean really … The three-piece orchestra parked right in front of the security checkpoint has just taken a little break from playing Christmas music. Nice touch. Not sure if the orchestra was strategically placed to get everyone in a good mood as they were being groped and radiated, but my experience in the Houston airport was a relatively positive one. Oh, they still make you take off your shoes and pat down grandma in her wheelchair. That part hasn’t changed. It was my experience that airport security is now a lot like rolling the dice in Las Vegas. If you don’t roll a craps, you get to go through the old metal detector. Otherwise, it’s the radiation tube or the intrusive pat down for you. I musta rolled one of the good numbers because I got the uneventful metal detector. Personally, I was hoping a “flash mob” would appear in the Birmingham airport to entertain the masses of holiday airport travelers, but so far no luck. Wouldn’t that be fun? Perhaps you have heard of a flash mob. No … yes … maybe so? Well, Google defines one as a large group of people who assemble suddenly in a public place, perform an unusual act for a brief time, and then quickly disperse. The most interesting ones involve singing and/or dancing always with a large mixture of bewildered and delighted onlookers, just regular folks, who happened to be in the right place at the unbelievably right time. One of the first I’d seen you can search for on YouTube. It was recorded from a train station lobby in Belgium some time back. Starts out with everyone milling around like people do in train stations. Everyone is dressed like a potential traveler when suddenly one seemingly random young lady in the crowd begins singing the “Do, Re, Mi …” song from the “Sound of Music” in her finest Julie Andrews voice. Seconds later a few more “travelers” join in, and pretty soon there is a large crowd singing and performing a clever choreographed dance much to the delight of all the real travelers. You can’t help but smile till your mouth cracks and your eyes wrinkle just like crinkle-cut French fries. Now I’ve never seen one in the flesh, but again thanks to a YouTube search, there is an interesting assortment of flash mobs videos available for viewing. And just in time for the Christmas season, there are a few recent ones that will entertain and melt, like microwaved butter, the Grinch-iest of hearts. One of my personal favorites was performed in a crowded food court at a mall. Christmas shoppers are milling around with food trays and chowing down when one heavenly voice starts singing the “Hallelujah Chorus.” Another random person from across the room chimes in and pretty soon the food court is filled with angelic voices. One lady performer stays in character by singing and pretending to be on a cell phone the entire time. Others are belting out their hallelujahs with Subway sandwiches in one hand. Multiple shoppers caught off-guard whip out their cell phones to capture the event with a photo or slide show. Can you feel the goose bumps start to rise up on your arms? There was another flash mob performed by the Opera Company of Philadelphia that is equally inspiring. Smack dab in the middle of a crowded Macy’s department store filled with Christmas shoppers, the company performs what they called “A Random Act of Culture.” Again, the “Hallelujah Chorus” was most expertly sung. Watch that video a few times and you just might catch yourself running for the nearest Macy’s hoping for a repeat performance. Unsalted butter, delicious bar cookies and flash mobs singing the “Hallelujah Chorus” … a couple of more reasons for the season! Merry Christmas. Dixie Frantz is a longtime Kingwood resident and newspaper columnist since 1996. E-mail Dixie with your comments at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Comments (0)

There are no comments posted here yet

Leave your comments

  1. Posting comment as a guest. Sign up or login to your account.
Attachments (0 / 3)
Share Your Location