STHs. Strucks {sic}

The Legal Eagle has come up with a new name for abandoned buildings. He calls the ones in the worst state of repair “See Through Buildings”.  I have stolen his idea, and subdivided it into:  STH (See Through Houses) STB (See Through Businesses) STF (See Through Factories). On the 11th, the Warden (my new accomplice) and I passed a fine example of a STH:  Voila:

STH: Example 1. Note Sky Through House

Here’s an STH in its incipiency: The owner has tried to stave off see-throughness by the liberal application of blue tarping.

Can’t see through the first floor yet

Over on  Conner between Mack and Warren, I espied the Temple of the Black Eyed Peas. Or Popeye. Well, not really,  but close enough:

Will, I am, I yam

You will probably find this hard to believe, but just around the corner on Warren was a particularly apropos graffito. I think it needs no further introduction.  It’s a pretty apt descriptor of the state of the neighborhood.

Indeed. Note the care with which the cross is inserted into the “O”

One of the real (and I mean it) pleasures of touring the hood on Sundays is listening to the choirs in the churches I ride by. While I can make no claims as to the nature of the pastor’s sermons, the choir at Second Timothy Baptist Church rocks. The organist appears to have channeled the soul of Jimmy Smith into religious music.  If the Episcopal church had drummers and B-3 players, I think its long membership decline would reverse itself, pronto.  Here’s the church of which I speak.

I wish I could provide you with an audio sample

Dateline NBC is preparing to do yet another story about Detroit and its dismal condition. I’m truly tired of the endless loop of stories about Detroit’s demise. For an alternate perspective, I encourage you to check out the excellent piece posted at The Urbanophile, which nicely debunks some of the fallacies about our fair city.  Included in that piece are a number of what will, I am sure, be surprising photos of the nicer parts of our city. In that vein, I present to you the newly-renovated, just-in-time-for-spring Shed 3 at the Eastern Market. (The Urbanophile has a photo of a shed, too, but not this one).

Shed 3 at The Eastern Market

Some things in Detroit will remain constant, of course. Here’s a buyer of houses that isn’t interested in the building where he’s placed his ad:

Will buy your house; just not this one

And we will, no doubt, continue to mangle the English Language:

Shocks + Struts = Strucks?

Need a new muffler? I feel you.

One can only hope our distinctive signage style will continue to stay true to its roots. Here’s a tempting call for snack lovers:

Red always = hot

While on the subject of peanuts, back in my college days, I volunteered for an organization that put on jazz concerts. One time, I was sitting backstage waiting for a Dizzie Gillespie show. Prior to his entrance, he sat down next to me, stuck a mute in his horn, and warmed up by playing “Salt Peanuts”. It was one of the greatest experiences in my life. (I also drove around Ann Arbor with Sonny Rollins, but that’s for another time).

My great grandfather owned a company on Atwater called Detroit River Iron Works. It made parts for ships. The building’s still there. I have to get a photo of it before it goes away. Meanwhile, Addison Iron Fabricators is still a going concern, still showing that metal who’s boss.

Making things: An honored Detroit Tradition

That’s it for the week of April 10. We’ve had wildly varying temperatures lately. If it gets warm enough to get out on the saddle, I’ll post some more tomorrow.


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