I read with some amusement this morning that the Reading Downtown Improvement District will conduct the first Beautiful Buildings of Downtown Reading contest.Indeed, one of the strawberries I was eating with my morning Cheerios almost lodged in my throat while I was giggling.Which, of course, would have served me right for being so cynical.Because, to be honest, I figured downtown Reading, except for the spanking new Sovereign office complex, had abdicated all claim to beautiful buildings years ago.Upon reading the story, I immediately intended to respond with coruscating wit in a blog. Granted, I know downtown Reading is doing a slow U-turn, so I figured brevity would be the soul of my blog. Forgive me for that superficial response. I wasn’t seeing the whole picture. I was looking through a straw at ground-level only.I wasn’t looking up.As fellow blogger Susan Miers Smith pointed out during a conversation, downtown Reading is chock full of beautiful architecture. Unfortunately, a lot of it isn’t apparent on the first-floor level.I guess I’ll have to walk around downtown with my eyes looking up. Just hope I don’t step on anything I shouldn’t.