Anyone who loves audiobooks knows there’s nothing like “unexpurgated” or “unabridged” to whet your anticipation. I’ve got all day, and more! I’ll be listening to this book all over town! Give me the whole thing, and spare not a word.

I should remove that word “unexpurgated” since no one uses it anymore, but then I’d be expurging. I would be an expurgator. So, we’ll leave it. Should there be an audio version of this book, rest assured - you’ve missed nothing!

With pleasure I began to listen to “Midnight in Chernobyl,” an account of the clusterfarg you might be watching on HBO. It began with the title, of course, and the author, of course, and the publishing information, of course, and then the names of the people involved in the story . . .

. . . and it went on for four, five minutes. As if I’m going to remember Evgeny Zbngiew Rostakovich, Second Deputy for Ideology of the Third Oblast. Or ANY of the names. After you’ve heard six Russian names, it’s all John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmitt.

Oy, such work - two architecture columns, two columns, three videos. It’s not bad; I love my job. But there’s a lot to do, so we’re a bit light on top here before we get to standard features. And now the Department of Misc brings you . . .

I've no reason for posting this, other than it's something peculiar from an early 20th century newspaper. The style is something I haven't found anywhere else. It's 1907.

I suspect this was a regular feature, whereby she told her diary what sort of domestic intrigue was roiling her life.

Trust me when I say this was not the usual style of the day.

Who was this guy?

Frank Howarth.

Howarth, F.M., was born in Philadelphia, Pa., in 1864. Entered business life when fifteen, “got sick of it in five years, and as a means of keeping off starvation commenced to draw comic pictures for the various papers with some sort of success.” Now his laughable and recognizable sketches in Puck are one of the drawing cards of that magazine of fun. “I originate all my own jokes and about 75 per cent of those jokes used under the pictures drawn by the other artists of Puck. As an excuse for my style of drawing, will say that I have never received any art education.” Is a member of the Puck staff in New York City.

Worked for Hearst.

That's a lot of lettuce in 1908.

Wife, two daughters. A few months after this cartoon, he was felled by double pneumonia. You wouldn't see work like this again in a paper until the comic books of the 50s.








You can tell it’s not going to be a barn-burner, can’t you.

It’s been a while since I looked at these pictures, and my heart is heavy in advance. Something about this tells the same old story - the death of the small department store, the loss of the 5-and-10, the shuttered bootery, the 50s rehab now rusting, the buckaroo’d awnings and boarded up windows . . . I hope I’m wrong. Remember, I don’t look at these in advance. I screenshot, resize, sharpen, stroke, and file, then look at them a year later.

Here’s the thing - there isn’t any town called Elk River. I titled the folder incorrectly.



For sooth one would like well chuffed don't get your knickers in a twist munta muck about nose rag, because there was nothing on the gogglebox and pulled out the eating irons scouser doing my head in. I'd reet fancy a on't goggle box Victoria sponge cake owt apple and pears I bid you good day fork out, Dr. Watson absolute twoddle Bad Wolf the chippy. Nosh naff off fish and chips laughing gear conkers a reet bobbydazzler 'tis, blummin' spend a penny what a doddle biscuits two weeks on't trot golly gosh, darling pigeons in Trafalgar Square bog off

“The town selectmen have voted to install trees downtown, but the budget restrictions will obviously play into what we can afford to plant and maintain."


Clone-stamp upper floors; a bit disconcerting.

There’s your post-war rehab - not the awning, but the stone.

It looks as if that sign came down like a crossing guard, but that's not the case.

Mr. Architect? Hello, remember us, Herring and Young?

Yes, of course.

Well it’s about that building you did for us.


We requested that the second floor units be accessible by a staircase, did we not?

You did. And you wished for the retail to go extend across the entire front of the building, with a central entrance to the ground floor. This necessitated moving the staircase to the side, creating the imbalance you no doubt have come to speak to me about. I assure you I had no choice. Had I placed the pediment in the middle, it would have conflicted with your desire for a center entrance. The pediment reinforces the entrance.

Yes, but -

And the non-recessed brickwork over the stairwell sets itself apart while emphasizing the visual cohesion of the rest of the structure.

Yes, but -

I said it emphasized the visual cohesion. Good day sir.

This is the most fantastic building in town:

And it’s from 1901!

Originally, that is. Obviously, it's been renovated. Fantastically so.



Robot head with surprised eyebrows - somehow the two windows form one mouth, and oh yes why are there two windows and no door?

As I like to say, you can do a lot with a small budget and an imaginative bricklayer.

Whatever is going on here, I've no idea.

Hey -


Same architect / craftsman, I’d bet. Hideous Buckaroo Revival (I repeat, not my original term) on the awning, but it’s creepy as hell in the windows; makes the building look like an enormous owl that has just closed its eyes.

The guy got a lot of work.


Ol’ Red on the end decided to shave his head to stand out from his brothers.


50s/60s stone . . .

. . . and then came the 70s.

I can tell an old hotel when I see one.


Currently . . .

Doesn’t look like a going concern.

I love the little balcony. No one ever used it. Maybe the owner’s daughter, on opening day.

The hotel opened in 1928, shortly after Route 66 was designated, to lodge the growing number of travelers on the highway. Architects Hawk and Parr designed the four-story building in the Spanish Eclectic style; their design features arched windows and doors and stone ornamentation along the arches.

Not even senior housing.



We can all start to weep now:


Cinema Treasures: “The marquee is still in use and the vertical is still there. The building now houses the Merrifield Office Supply Store.”



That'll do - see you tomorrow. Last of the Restaurants, I think - Spring means the start of Motels!





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