Wednesday, November 29, 2006

A Comparative Study of Weird Buildings...
...or, they don't build 'em like that anymore...

In this day and age, as far as buildings go, "continuity" is the word. For instance, if you see a Walgreens' Pharmacy in Portland, Oregon, it'll look just like the one in Oklahoma City, which looks just like the one in Helena, Montana, which looks just like the one in Dallas, Texas, which looks just like the Walgreens' right here in CDA. McDonalds has golden arches and similarly-built places to eat (I shudder to think of McDonalds' as a Restaurant), and all across the country, Motel 6 is "leavin' the light on for ya", even though its rooms are much more expensive than they used to be.

There are those who criticize the homogenization of our culture, in which everything looks the same. They will say that individuality is being sacrificed in the name of corporate identity, and that our respective environments, no matter where those environments are, are becoming increasingly bland, monotonous, as well as being dull, boring and omnipresent. And who am I to disagree? In a way, I appreciate the fact that I can find a Denny's Restaurant everywhere I go, and I do like McDonalds' sausage-eggs McMuffins, and I can get those anywhere I happen to be. But yes, individuality is going by the wayside, and that's sad, too.

Wayback when (and I do mean "wayback"), things were a lot different. People took time to build things. Buildings had much more uniqueness to them. It was a different time when things were done slower, and people could actually take TIME to plan out their floor plans. Cost-efficiency wasn't as big of a thing back then as now. After all, it's more expensive per-square-foot to build a unique building. We can't have that, rrrrright? Hence, all of the cookie-cutter store 'branches' we have today. Well, I have pix of three highly unusual (and dearly departed) buildings in this area. I've posted images of these two buildings before. And, you won't find a lot of buildings that look like the ones pictured below...



Here's a picture of the old Showboat Drive-In, which was located just west of Ramsey Road, along what is now the frontage road that leads to the neighborhoods by the Coeur d'Alene Public Golf Course. (Which isn't overpriced like the Rezzort Golf Course, but that's a whole 'nother subject, for another time.) This picture was taken a bit before my time, but you can see the individuality in this structure. Perhaps the owner might have been afraid that in the event of a sudden storm, his building would float away. But...an interesting building for sure.



Here's another grand old building, the "Fish Inn", which was located just north of the I-90/St. Maries interchange about 5 miles east of CDA. I became familiar with this building in the '80s, when a rock band I drummed for played here. By that time, the owners had added an outdoor deck which extended forth from the side of "The Fish" that you can't see here. In the land around "The Fish", were camping spaces, and even some cabins. Sadly, "The Fish" burned down at the turn of the '90's. Sort of an architectural "Fish Fry", ha ha...



This building is still standing, over there in Kellogg, Idaho, some 40 miles away from here. May I introduce you to "The Miners' Hat" drive-in. I have no idea when it ceased to be a drive-in; I do know that "Miners' Hat Realty" occupied this building in the late '70s, but since I don't get over to Kellogg a whole lot, I don't know what's in there now. But I'll bet this lil' ol' drive-in was a popular place to go, seeing as how Kellogg was a mining town. Definitely a unique building.
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Back in the early '60's, I remember seeing a (tavern?) that was located on East Sherman Avenue here in CDA, was it called (The Lighthouse)? And, it LOOKED like a lighthouse. But in all of the internet photo-searching I've done, I've never seen an image of it. And, in all the old residential neighborhoods around here, all the houses are different. How people can live in those cookie-cutter prefabricated newer neighborhoods is totally beyond me. No thanks...

2 Comments:

Blogger Jinx said...

I found you.. I got on to read you one day and you were gone. I didn't know you'd changed your name. Trying to hide from me?
Jinx

7:27 PM  
Blogger little ol' me said...

Heya, Ms. Jinx. I figured that in order to keep things interesting, I have to shake things UP every now and then. Cultivate an air of mystery. Anyway, glad ya found me...

2:33 AM  

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