August 8th, 2007

krazy koati

The cry goes up both far and near

There's an amusing little pastime people in New England may want to try. Exactly how many Rhode Island license plated-cars can you find moving in traffic in Newport, Rhode Island, during the high summer? That sounds like a trick question, of course, because a quick glance would show that is no moving traffic in Newport. There's just a traffic jam which, according to the locals, began in early June, and bids fair to end sometime around September, unless the Jazz Festival turns out to be better than average this year. So the locals apparently gather months of supplies, set their cars in secure spots, and hide in the hurricane shelters until all the tourists pass, which they can't, because the cars are not moving.

All right, I did see one Rhode Island plate. Must be a new guy. His plate number was a whole five characters long.

I also learned from picking up newspapers along the way (I've given up getting the newspaper at home as my parents have thrown it out by the time I wake up, except that they have the paper of three weeks ago laying around) that much of the lamentable Underdog movie was filmed in Providence, and the city is doing what it can to take pride in that sorry accomplishment. The Providence Journal pointed out that while quite a few of the city's locations were used, including the state capitol, they were not used in strict accord with geographical reality, since no city ever looks enough like itself to plausibly play a city in the movies. Also they built a phony interior for the capitol dome so that it could be smashed in some super-heroic activity, rather than demolish the real state capitol interior. Whew.

My experience with Providence is very limited, but from what I've seen I feel really very comfortable in it. It may be that most of my wandering around there was centered around a river and that evokes pleasant memories of the Singapore River, but the city does have a pleasant feeling about it. Or I may just appreciate the optimistic effort they're putting into the Hurricane Barrier. This pleasant feeling doesn't translate into a job, at least not yet, but it's an option.

Trivia: St Brivals in the Forest of Dean in Gloucester manufactured 50,000 horseshoes for English King Richard I for the Third Crusade. Source: From Alfred to Henry III: 871 - 1272, Christopher Brooke.

Currently Reading: The Detonators: The Secret Plot to Destroy America And An Epic Hunt for Justice, Chad Millman. And ... wow.