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It’s not a tradition till you’ve done it twice

I knew I had officially entered Old Fogeyhood a couple of years ago when I realized I didn’t really care if I stayed up to usher in the New Year. As such, I was completely unaware of last year’s new New Year’s Eve “tradition” in Houston, which apparently will be taking this year off due to technical difficulties.

It was supposed to be a signature event for Houston, planners said, a budding New Year’s Eve tradition that might one day rival the Big Apple’s midnight drop. There was heady talk of eventually broadcasting it nationally or even worldwide.

But the 9-foot star that was hoisted to the top of downtown’s Binz Building to celebrate last Dec. 31 will languish in a warehouse this year as planners regroup for what they promise will be a far grander spectacle in 2007.

“It takes a couple of years to get a project like that up and running and to get people educated about it,” said City Councilwoman Carol Alvarado. “Last year was a start.”


The hitch in planning may reflect that Houston is still learning how to create a sense of shared community — something that wasn’t necessary when a surging, oil-based economy was all the city needed to consider itself successful, said Rice University sociology professor Stephen Klineberg, a longtime observer of Houston culture.

Political and business leaders increasingly are focusing on creating a distinct identity for Houston, Klineberg said, but such transformations take time.

“It’s a tricky thing,” he said, “to create a tradition that doesn’t already exist.”

Hey, in the MOB we just declare that anything we’ve done more than once is a tradition. Saves a lot of time that way. Give it a try and see for yourself.

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One Comment

  1. Bill says:

    Kuff, I am with you regarding staying up until midnight. The wife and I head to bed at 11:01 PM CST after the ball drops in NY.