It's not just the fact that downtown's light display last winter made the Plaza's look tired and dowdy by comparison. Downtown's lights kicked the Plaza's ass. They were visible from the hills all around -- the computer-controlled, ever-changing seasonal patterns and festive messages prancing across the 22-story Marriott; the "space canons" shooting up the glass building at 12th and Wyandotte; red, green and white lights constantly moving on the building at 10th and Broadway; lights changing colors, fading and appearing to move at 13th and Washington -- shining like mythical stars to herald downtown's rebirth. As of last December, it was better to enjoy the lights from a distance -- folks who drove up Interstate 35 from Johnson County to see them did well simply to stay on the highway, because there still wasn't much to do downtown after dark. But it was a start. The display illuminated the new spirit of cooperation among the downtown business leaders who had pooled their resources to put on the impressive show. Within weeks, H&R Block would announce that it was relocating its headquarters downtown, with the pledge of a sparkly new entertainment district and an arena to follow. Downtown still has a long way to go, but the lights seemed to hold great promise. And that's what the holidays are all about, right?