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Thursday 23 January 2014

You Take Manhattan


Central Park Dam, Mishawaka, Indiana: photo by David Cory, 16 January 2014

Redundant flavours
that vanished with the snows
of Kilimanjaro --

or yesteryear,
was it?

There were so many, once.

You take
Manhattan, I'll take
Moose Tracks.

Or no, you take
Manhattan, I'll make

said the Moose.

Bonnie Doon, Mishawaka, Indiana: photo by David Cory, 5 February 2010

Bonnie Doon, Mishawaka, Indiana: photo by David Cory, 5 February 2010

Bonnie Doon (with garbage truck), Mishawaka, Indiana: photo by David Cory, 5 February 2010

Statue and snow. Statue outside the Ho Ping House Chinese Restaurant, South Bend, Indiana: photo by David Cory, 24 December 2009

Post Storm 2.
Landscape light turned into an apple as the heat from the bulb caused the snow piled on top to melt slightly and engulf the light: photo by David Cory, 11 January 2011

Post Storm 1.
Snow plastered against the wall by the snow blower, slowly peeling away: photo by David Cory, 12 January 2011

A brief period of sunshine and warmer temperatures resulted in some melting of snow. The climatic conditions and the weight of the snow on this chair resulted in an effect reminiscent of the Play-Doh Fun Factory of my childhood: photo by David Cory, 8 February 2011

Snows of Kilimanjaro. Miniature golf course during a snowstorm, Mishawaka, Indiana
: photo by David Cory, 10 February 2010


TC said...

In the original Wars of the Worlds, as summoned up through these long winter nights in intermittent drifts and flurries of recollection from the nescient snowfort-building blizzards of youth, it was always the Midwest Against Everybody (if you were from the Midwest, that is).

But I don't remember even snowblind optimism deluding anyone into thinking we could keep the annual January counter-offensive, emanating from the fiercely defended ring of discarded christmas trees in the nearest vacant lot (where the smaller kids were assigned iceball-making duties during the forlorn-hope charges from the perimeter), going as far as Berlin, before the springtime slush set in.

Leonard Cohen: First We Take Manhattan (German TV)

Nin Andrews said...

That link is really funny. And yes, it's the Midwest against everyone, although the one nice thing (or not, depending on how you think) about the Midwest is tat your coastal relatives never visit.

And yes, I'll take more tracks. You can have Manhattan . . .

and the old Xmas trees. They line the streets here as well, week after week, as if they keep coming. I can't quite figure it out. I think maybe they multiply in the houses. It's so cold, the garbage men are not coming out to collect them.

ACravan said...

I learned quite a bit about Mishawaka during my middle-of-the-night tour, and about Bonny Doon, Moose Tracks, and that dramatic dam. It will be several degrees colder there today than it will be in Berwyn, which is, as they say, cold comfort. When I finally reached the Midwest in full adulthood, I loved being there and I'm sorry I don't get to visit any longer. Our Christmas tree departed only a few days ago; we keep it up through Caroline's birthday. Years ago in Brooklyn Heights we kept one up until June, which really upset an old friend of mine who promotes his own "eccentricity" as a self-conscious effect. His consternation was amusing. We were just being lazy and didn't want to hassle with the major needle fallout that was sure to ensue getting the thing out the door. I loved this one - the elegant poem and the photographs that make Mishawaka look like what my daughter would consider ancient history, i.e., my own childhood. And the brief splash of vibrant, but washed-out, color. Curtis

vazambam (Vassilis Zambaras) said...

Bonnie Doon’s in Mishawaka?

Like you said, Tom--forget about Manhattan and Berlin—get on the nearest banana boat and split!

TC said...

I think Nin has figured out the solution to the Mystery of the Miraculously Multiplying Christmas Trees. They commingle and propagate in the houses when nobody's looking (or asleep, or too stunned to notice).

Curtis, full adulthood is probably the proper time to approach the Midwest. I used to think that about Roman Catholicism and all its latterday Anglo (re)discoverers (Chesterton et al.). But I'm not sure that missing out on the full original psychosis (basic ingredient) isn't like missing out on the oxygen in air. In the case of the Midwest, the primal horror is the sense that the rest of the world is forever located not simply beyond the city limits, but on another planet.

There was a period when as a lad I liked to position myself at a certain location on Lake Street in Chicago, at sunset, when there were clouds massing to the West, over the plains... and there, with a little patience and imagination, I could look at those clouds and pretend they were mountain ranges.

Growing up in the Midwest, one learns that second-order experiences are often the best that are available, and in any case they are preferable to no experience at all.


Aye, Vassilis, ye wee poetical radge, a bit of a geolocation question does indeed arise when ice cream is vended (rather hopefully at that, it must be said) on the snowbound shores of the Great Lakes under a brand lifted from traditional Scots balladry.
Ye Banks and Braes O'Bonnie Doon: Robert Burns, performed by Madelaine Cave

But this sort of thing, as you know, bothers Americans not at all. After all, half of Santa Cruz County, California, has pseudo Scots place names (Ben Lomond & c.).

In my home town in the Midwest, there was a wee lane named Bonnie Brae. The snow drifts sometimes rose above the street marker.

But then, many have supposed Burns was writing about Loch Doon, when in fact it seems he had in mind the river Doon, which flows out of the Loch, rather than the Loch itself.

Still the hanging botheration remains... what were those moose doing in Indiana??

ACravan said...

My first close friend from the Midwest was someone I met in New England boarding school. He was (and I expect still is) a lovely guy, but he felt a bit like a fish out of water in high school and showed this is funny forms of defensiveness. He used to tell me that he thought I (he regarded me as very East Coast and kind of cosmopolitan, which is funny to think about now; we were really young) wouldn't last a minute in the Midwest, that I would vaporize upon contact with it. When I finally first hit the Midwest big time in Chicago years later, I was actually very happy and I've subsequently happily frozen (and occasionally fried) there and in Milwaukee, Pleasant Prairie, Detroit and other places. My Moose Tracks research today revealed a great advertising slogan to the effect that Moose Tracks ice cream is the dessert that dessert itself likes to eat for dessert. Curtis

Mose23 said...

A world chock full of "redundant flavours".

Leonard doesn't half look uneasy.

TC said...

We demand to know more about that pecan turtle.