Friday, March 18, 2011

10 Top vocalists #10 Ivan, Men Without Hats

If I had to prove to anyone that Men Without Hats are awesome, I would start right here. 15 songs into a raging live show, they drop this Canadian bomb on the audience with unbridled fury. Where do they boys go? Right here!

Ivan's vocals are declarative. Pronouncements. 

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Historic Bridge Park of Calhoun County, MI

This is where the old bridges of Michigan come to...not die. Rather to live on, in graceful retirement over a tiny creek near I-94 by Battle Creek, MI. The park is sparsely populated now, which only six bridges, but in time it will ripen into 19 bridges somehow crammed into a small park. The bridges are all single lane iron deals, designed in the late 1800's and early 1900's for horse and carriage traffic, beaten up by a century of automobile use, now restored for park strollers. 

A beautiful project being implemented with no hope of any monetary gain by an obviously visionary (or demented) county executive.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Storm King Wavefield at Storm King Art Center

When you visit Maya Lin's Wavefield at the Storm King Art Center, do not climb on the wave hills.
The waves, by the way, look at their best from the crest, with a sea of people on them like a flotilla of human jetsam lifted by the rising seas. Only you must walk in the troughs of the waves, not surf on the tops.

Maybe we could just have fun with our art and let future generations decide if they want to keep em' or let them rot. Why keep the fingerprints off something no one's going to want fifty years from now anyway?

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Hartmann Model Railroad and Toy Museum

Attracted by a brochure picture showing a gentleman piloting what appeared to be the fabled "crotch rocket" sized miniature train, Damian and I rolled up on Hartmann and his Model Railroad and Toy Museum. The crotch rocket turned out to be a model train of closer to "normal" size but too small for two unrelated grown up men to comfortably ride in the middle of the afternoon with children present.

The highlight of this rather astounding collection of model trains and toys is this n-gauge round loop housed in an old coin operated television case. A winter scene, naturally.  Whether watching a tiny train revolve around a fake snow covered lump is better or worse than watching a color television is not for me to judge.

Ol' Smokey

The Clinch Park Marina steam train endlessly circles the spot where the Clinch Park Zoo in Traverse City, Michigan stood for 50 years. The zoo left in 2006, leaving behind a field of massive fake rocks made of concrete, oddly positioned and decorated buildings, and a rock with a Sesquicentennial plaque leaning against it. The city may have renamed the train to encourage riders to look out and see the marina rather than look inside the circle at the former zoo grounds.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

54 Dunkin' Donuts

There are now 54 Dunkin' Donuts locations within a 5 mile radius of my home. The red pin is for my cardiologist's office.

Dia Beacon

Robert Ryman painting @ Dia Beacon with some random dude.

When I tell people about my visit to Dia Beacon, I am sure to include an amusing anecdote about how I was not sure I was looking at the art or the wall. Because it was so minimalistic.

This I can add to my list of anecdotes I can rely on to fall flat. It is also a totally dishonest about how I feel about art and it plays to the preconceptions I have about other people's ideas about art. I naturally assume people don't like that crap because who does?

But really, you have to say something, right? When you are talking to people? You can't just say, "we went to the museum." And if you enthuse you sound like an idiot too. "We went to the museum and saw the Flavins and it was fantastic!"
Nobody wants to talk to that guy.

Well, it turns out tons of people like minimalism. The museum was packed on a beautiful autumn Saturday morning. And I like it too.