Saturday, July 26, 2008

Another mysterious product of the bureaucratic mind on display in Madison

Mysteries of the Bureaucratic Mind
Check out the Saturday hours posted on the front door of Madison's Westside Station post office on Struck Street. Come on, guys -- if you don't want us to come in, don't beat around the bush. Just come out and say so. Your website says you're open from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. So what's with the cryptic, alternative time scheme for Saturdays? Did your sign painter run out of 8's and 3's? Do your Saturday hours change so frequently you need to keep your options open? Or is there something in the USPS manual that says every communication with the public must contain at least one example of totally indecipherable gibberish? It's a mystery.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Why does Madison's East Side have all the cool bridges?

Starkweather Creek Bike Path Bridge Over East Washington
I've fallen in love with another new Madison bridge -- the Starkweather Creek Bike Path Bridge over East Washington Avenue at Marquette Street. I had driven under it a couple times on the way to Milwaukee but hadn't really noticed it. Like a lot of bike and pedestrian overpasses, it doesn't readily show its best features to cars speeding underneath. But today I had an opportunity to get out of the car and walk across the bridge. It's a beauty.

Starkweather Creek Bike Path Bridge Over East WashingtonThe bridge is a bit more than a mile east of the East Washington Avenue Bridge over the Yahara River. It shares many of the Frank Lloyd Wright-influenced, Prairie Style design elements of the latter and was designed by the same firm, the Milwaukee office of HNTB Corporation. But the feel is different. The Yahara bridge carries a major traffic artery. The Starkweather Creek Bike Path only carries pedestrians and two-wheeled vehicles, so it's much lighter and airier. Next time you're in that part of town, check it out.

Monday, July 21, 2008

The Mad City Chicken Coop Tour gave us a rare opportunity to pet a retired film star

Mad City Chicken Coop Tour 2008
Ricka is a Red Star, one of two chickens belonging to Jen and Scott Lynch, Madison. Ricka is one of the retired stars of the documentary Mad City Chickens. We had a chance to pet Ricka and feel the surprisingly soft underside of her feet on the Mad City Chicken Coop Tour on Sunday. For more information and additional photos, see my Flickr set.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Art disappears into commerce like a fading ghost at MMoCA during Maxwell Feet Daze

Art Fades Into Commerce at MMoCA During Maxwell Feet Daze
The 1980 Deborah Butterfield wire and steel sculpture Dapple Gray at the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art (MMoCA) becomes even more dappled and gray during the annual Maxwell Street Days shopfest on State Street. Its unfortunate position in the corner of the glass lobby becomes even more so. Reflections make it seemingly transparent and it seems to fade into the crowd of bargain hunters like an equine ghost haunting the festivities.