Thursday, 5 April 2012

My City's Warts Are Beautiful

I'm a battering ram, coming through to you
In every alleyway, in every avenue

      - Rancid, "Avenues and Alleyways"
This time of year, with 'popcorn popping on the apricot tree,' my city is gorgeous and resplendent, dropping flower confetti in the streets and charming every pedestrian or resident with warm, fragrant breezes.

Our new IRC office, which is *gorgeous*
Blossoming trees are everywhere in Salt City right now.

Winds carry the scent of blooms and deposit tiny petals like celebratory confetti into inconvenient locales. I had friends and co-workers helpfully pluck blossoms from my unkempt hair for the last week or two until I finally shaved my Samson off (don't worry, I plan on knitting my discarded hair into a creepy but practical wig/beanie with which I can complete my transition into Moe from the Three Stooges).

But there is always another side to beauty, isn't there? To call it 'ugliness' is to misunderstand aesthetics, in my understanding.

In every place of beauty, there are moments of love and squalor that compliment the greater whole - especially in a somewhat old city like Salt Lake, where zoning, regulation, and design have been something of a slapdash process so far.

To this end, I submit my favorite alleyways in Salt City.

Behind the Bay, which I have written about before
I'm relatively certain this is how the movie C.H.U.D. started out

Hiding bodies, fighting crime, sleeping out - it would be difficult to do much of ANYTHING in this less-than-two-foot-wide specimen.

Meanwhile, condominiums are rising near Pioneer Park, in the toxic fallout zone of hippie activists that constituted #OccupySLC's encampment at Pioneer Park.

Interestingly, they have created their own alleyways, with a sort of crazily futuristic and optimistic feel:

That is architecture that in my opinion says "I'm an alley.... to the FUTURE!"

Alleyways used to profoundly irritate me. Lately I have found a strange sense of peace, exploration, and history in them. The surrounding/menacing architecture makes me even more intrigued.

No comments:

Post a Comment