Lovely day. Fall without any particular evidence of it. Fall always does summer a bit better in the transitional days.

I went downtown to Heritage, our printing facility, to get a new ID.


Turns out it was quite simple; didn’t even need to sit for a picture. They just ran off a copy of the old one, when I was considerably younger. I've had noloss of ideals in the interim, though, so it didn’t taunt my older, battered, more seasoned and cynical self.

In the lobby sits an old composing machine.

It's an Intertype, probably from the mid-20s. The complexity of these machines is amazing:

We also used a Monotype Supercaster. At least that's what I found in the basement one day.

I wonder if operation of the machine came naturally after a while; I suspect so. Steep learning curve, then muscle memory. Don’t know what you’d do after the paper closed. Wait for another opening. Wait for someone to keel over at his keyboard or get hit by a bus or get fired for having whiskey fingers. It seems unnatural for the machine to be still, and for it to be in a quiet room. It should be clattering away in a calamitous cavern filled with the smell of ink and oil.

Now and then you miss a world with a bit more friction. A place filled with industrious noise. Modern newspapers were quiet before everyone went home. I still wish the building shook when they turned on the presses. Clicking "publish" on the Content Management software isn't the same.

Okay: This is a simple cultural literacy test for the internet. Do you know what this means?

Why don’t I discuss things like this here more often? They’re au courant. I should be spending more time on the culture of NOW, instead of mining the vast veins of the past. Why linger on irrelevancies? Things like the image above mean something about the times - in this case, how a simple repositioning of objects that have come to have different meanings since the original movie was made can refer to something completely unrelated.

But does it mean anything? No.

It just says you get it. You speak l33t, as they used to say long ago. That’s part of the problem with this entire culture: most of it means nothing in itself, except to connect the disparate people whose only common thread is the ability to connect this to that, or see this as a repurposing of that, or see that as ironic reuse of this.

It's harmless, but it's also post-verbal. It's odd: on the internet side, you have language turning to pictographs, and on the academic side - and areas of the culture infected by academic nonsense - you have language becoming highly specific but incomprehensible. In the middle is where we all live, talking as ever, except the spaces in which we spoke are diminished, and half the time we're masked. None of this is good, and I wonder if


Anyway. The Intertype is dead, and we all have its successor in our hands. What did you do with it today?

You just know the title will be something about the Bag Nooseses:

Maurice Denis:

Maurice Denis (25 November 1870 – 13 November 1943)was a French painter, decorative artist and writer, who was an important figure in the transitional period between impressionism and modern art. He was associated with Les Nabis then the Symbolist movement, and then with a return to neo-classicism. His theories contributed to the foundations of cubism, fauvism, and abstract art. Following the First World War, he founded the Ateliers d'Art Sacré (Workshops of Sacred Art), decorated the interiors of churches, and worked for a revival of religious art.

A man not unfamiliar with movements and sects and cliques.

The Nabis took their name from a Hebrew term which comes from the word nebiim, or prophet.  The term was coined in 1888 by the linguist Auguste Cazalis, who drew a parallel between the way these painters aimed to revitalize painting (as 'prophets of modern art') and the way the ancient prophets had rejuvenated Israel.

A tad self-aggrandizing, these lads. But I'm sure it was quite exciting to found a movement, spearhead it, then be tossed out by the newcomers who wanted to get back to true Nabism.








The view above doesn't seem right for a town ofr 39,000 souls. Too small. Well, we'll see. It's named after  Mormon muckymuck Thomas Ricks, who founded it.

What a nice place to begin:


Opened in 1917 as the Rex Theater and through the years had various owners and operators.

In 1976, when it was called the Romance Theater, it was damaged by the Teton Dam flood. The theater, after being rebuilt, was renamed the Westwood Theater and finally sold to Carmike Cinemas in 1988.

Carmike Cinemas, which has another three-screen theater in this town of 14,300, operated it until closing it on March 29, 2001. In around 2006, it was reopened as a community arts center, and in 2011 was renamed Romance Theatre again.

Rather plain exterior, but the marquee pulls its weight.

The side. Compare to this picture, which I think we can safely date to 1977.


Compare this to the early 20th century storefronts we’ve visited over the years.

Explain the logic. Explain the appeal.

So . . . OUMB? Or do I like it?

I like it. Always like the mid-century banks. Light and modern.


The good news: most of the original ground floor appears intact.

The bad news is rather obvious.

This one is rewarding no matter where you look.

The tile. The sidewalk lines. The sign on the corner post, blank and deteriorating.

Dude’s been waiting for this moment for all of his life.

I’ll bet he has the pictures stored on his phone to show everyone.

It will be strange if the Google car goes back and he’s still there.

I wonder if they have?


Nothing special; just a classic mixed-use structure put up with great hope and pride for the town.


“Say, I’m new in town and need to break some bones. Any suggestions?

That “Sled Shop” sign really brings back the Ed “Big Daddy Roth” era of typography.


I’m going with “DEPT. STORE”


“Do you have a room?”

“Yes, and it’s rented.”



What did it mean? You want to say “Workers of the World” but they went by IWW. No, it’s our old friend, the Woodmen of the World, the most Twin-Peaks association name ever.

Now we have an OUMB.

It's trying to make you think it's classical, with the arches and the negative spaces where columns would be.

Post Office, Library, City Hall, Courthouse: it was an infinitely applicable style.


  Motels now! We all love the motels. See you around.




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