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Downtown Theater

Downtown Theater

The Perils of Pauline with Betty Hutton is playing at the Watson Theater which is "Carefully Cooled". Neisner Bros. and McClellan's and J. C. Penney Department Stores are across the street. There are nice canvas awnings to shade the retail entrances and wide sidewalks for the pedestrians. Shopping Malls were a few years away. This is Kansas.

And yes, that's the city bus back there in traffic.

view profilemeagain625 says: Excellent photo! I'm jealous of your finds, anyjazz!

view profileanyjazz65 says: I cheated on this one. I found it in the bottom of an old file drawer today but I originally found it on this street. This is Salina, Kansas. I went to that movie...

Oh and thanks for the comment.

view profilecornerofthefield says: Do you have an after picture for this one?

view profilemluisa_ says: Bellissima !

view profileanyjazz65 says: @cornerofthefield: Good idea! I could do that on my next trip out. It is quite different now.
@mluisa: Thank you!

view profileed ed says: i don't know why, but this has a threatening edge for if some great disaster is about to befall..

view profileanyjazz65 says: Yes, eded, it has for me as well. I am not sure why either. Perhaps in my case it is because I know first hand how much things have changed since 1947 when this picture was probably shot. And yes, one could characterize that as a disaster. For us on this continent with megalomaniacs in our government and a society driven by rampant greed perhaps a photograph like this gives scope to our precarious present-day impending possibilities.

And yes, this is a scene from many disaster movies. In the next frame Godzilla puts his foot on a few of the cars or a crack opens down the middle of the street or a huge shadow of an alien spacecraft gets everyone’s attention.

Yes, perhaps it is a reminder of a woefully lost calm before an eternally apocalyptic storm.

Shall we, like Pauline, in our next episode, once again escape the clutches of our dastardly nemesis, or indeed, is this our last chapter?

Again, I cite the wisdom of Walt Kelly: “We have met the enemy and he is us.”

view profileed ed says: yes, anyjazz, that's exactly right about the next scene... i think also of atom bombs..

that's an excellent phrase of Walt Kelly's. i'll explore further.

you know that whatever you get first, we get sooner or later, and what has dismayed me in recent years, maybe the last ten or so, is the way greed and plastic culture has been embraced here, not ironically, as once, but as worthy almost, and because popular, therefore justifiably accepted and promoted. this morning i was reading a passage in a book called "silver light" i am in the middle of. the chapter was called "birdland" and had a description of a girl listening to jazz in that club in 1950 - wardell grey, charlie parker etc. it was very well written and got a lot of the complexity and richness and feel of how jazz is made. (kerouac can do that too) then i thought of a conversation we'd had before about the decline and fall of musicianship, big bands etc... it all amounts to the same thing perhaps: instant culture as easy as possible.. it's easy to be grumpy about these things, i know, and to seem elitist if you object, but, know what i mean... celebrities and rampant consumerism? in the words of bartelby: "i would prefer not."

view profileanyjazz65 says: It is perhaps indicative of how far society has degenerated. The plight of the boiling frog would be appropriate here but everyone has heard it too often surely. We now look at an old photograph of an idyllic scene from softer times and think not peaceful, nostalgic thoughts but of inevitable, impending doomsday scenarios.

Maybe our basic survival instincts are subtly and subliminally conditioning our thought processes toward an awareness of peril; an awareness that will rebel and say a final “no” to the directions that insatiable, power-mad, leaders would take us. “How could my hand rebel against my heart? How could your heart rebel against your reason?” --Dryden. (Modernized a bit.)

Perhaps the answers will be in the next chapter.

Thanks for the tip on the book, eded. I will find a copy today.

Can anyone identify this painting? Is it Francois Schuiten? Looks like his work but can someone confirm it??
Click for larger version.

Yes, I refuse to use

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  • At Tuesday, July 31, 2007 5:28:00 PM, Blogger Twilight said…

    Oh dear, anyjazz - I was trying to lift myself out of apocalyptic mode.

    I shall pretend I didn't read the comments above and take a different tack -

    "Whatever happened to sunblinds?"

  • At Thursday, August 02, 2007 8:00:00 PM, Blogger anyjazz said…

    Sorry about the apocalyptic mode.

    Oh. That took me a while.

    Awnings = Sunblinds and vice versa. Yes, you seldom see canvas awnings (sunblinds) on the fronts of shops now. Too much trouble I suppose.


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