austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,
austin_dern
austin_dern

You got me spinnin' round and round

Michigan is loosening up the quarantine restrictions, as part of the plan to get the second, more deadly wave of Covid-19 under way. I noticed that the bar nearest us, though, the Green Door, had a sign saying they were staying closed for now while they evaluated what was safe for their staff and patrons. They'll revisit the decision after the 4th of July. I approve. And our hipster bar, The Avenue, announced they won't be opening for at least three weeks, which I guess also puts them to around the 4th of July. The Capital Area library announced they intend to start doing curbside dropoff and pickup of books the 22nd of June; it'd be nice to start borrowing books from the library again. The Michigan State University library has ``closed'' on its calendar all the way into August.

On the one hand of course I want stuff open and something like normal again. (It's, today, three full months since we went anywhere that wasn't the store or bunny_hugger's parents.) But, jeez. If we were at, like, a dozen new cases in Michigan per day I'd say it's probably reasonable. As it is we ... well, I can't find a reference for how many people are likely getting it every day. But the state's got 65,000 cases (confirmed or probable) and almost all of them are in in the arc from Detroit to Grand Rapids (as are basically all the people). It's easier to bear another month without haircuts than another six thousand people dead.


Well. More fun things, now. Saturday for Halloweekends 2018 we started the day with a trip to the Jolly Donut diner, and then, of course, the Merry-Go-Round Museum. It had some new pieces on exhibit, too, so I have a better spread of photos than frankly I had expected. Let's look.

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Carousel zebra, their 2017 raffle horse. We didn't win it. I am not sure why the zebra was still on display, whether the person who won it hadn't arranged transportation or whether they were leaving it for the museum to show.


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Like what you see? Take a stamp, it'll last longer. Two of the horses commemorated in the US Post Office carousel stamps, along with giant reproductions of their stamps. By the way, the Merry-Go-Round museum is a former post office so that makes this that much more fun.


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Carousel animal seen through the (non-working) brass ring dispenser on display.


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Carousel deer that, several years ago, was part of the White House Christmas decorations, along with a photograph of then-First Lady Michelle Obama showing it off.


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Some of the displays at the museum, including rounding boards (up top), the private-functions room, and a painting now hanging over the private-functions room door.


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I think this has to be a deer from a children's carousel, although I didn't take a photograph with the explanation, unfortunately.


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Slightly better picture of that painting above the private-events door. It's a rather strong piece, not least for the animal seeming to leap out of frame, an action quite energetic.


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A lion that's, apparently, one of the first menagerie (non-horse) figures for a carousel.


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A lion that survived the Hurricane of 1938. The sign implies that it's from a carousel at Long Beach, New Jersey, although it doesn't quite say that. There's a bunch of shore towns that could have had carousels that included this one.


SAM_1742.jpg

Two ostriches, one in a more subdued and one in a gaudy paint job. I bet the one on the right is British.


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Elephant figure, which is a rare menagerie animal. The shape and size make me think this has to be a children's carousel's mount.


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Saddle feature on the elephant, showing that it carries a pretty oversized howdah.


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Camel and a couple of goats; I think they might all predate 1900.


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And oh, here's a sphinx set up as secondary figure on the camel, and underneath the saddle.


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Meanwhile here's your basic goat.


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And here's a greyhound, and in the background a jumping rabbit. The greyhound's dated to an 1895 Charles Looff carousel, and the rabbit to a 1910 Dentzel.


Trivia: In 1881 the Prairie Cattle Company of Edinburgh, Scotland, was able to declare a 28% dividend. Source: Food in History, Reay Tannahill.

Currently Reading: Observations by Mr Dooley, Finley Peter Dunne. Humor, yes, although these are all pieces written for the newspapers about current events, circa 1900, so it's all a bit cryptic if you aren't somewhat hep to that era. And there's no humor more timeless than current-events joshing. Still, some bits really shine through, for example about reform administrations. (``In th' first place 'tis a gr-reat mistake to think that annywan ra-aly wants to rayform. Ye niver heerd iv a man rayformin' himsilf. He'll rayform other people gladly. He likes to do it. But a healthy man'll niver rayform while he has th' strenth. A man doesn't rayform till his will has been impaired so he hasn't power to resist what th' pa-apers calls th' blandishments iv th' timpter.'' Yes, it's all written in eye-dialect like that. Mr Dooley is proudly Irish. Sorry.)

Tags: covid-19, halloweekends, merry-go-round museum
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