This was my old apartment. Ground floor, just behind the white Jeep. In the early 1990s, I was paying $250 a month, utilities included, for this one bedroom apartment just off the Wayne State University campus.
This was the store I used to shop at every day. The owner, Les, used to love my dog, a Golden Retriever named Brandon. every day we'd go in together and he'd sit up and beg until Les gave him a pretzel sick out of the big jar on his counter. Then Les would fold my newspaper up and hand it to Brandon, who'd carry it home in his mouth. We did this daily for years.
I used to swim Brandon in this pool. Now there's a sign up that says "No dogs". Coincidence?
The flag pole on Gullen Mall.
Malice Green who fought them when they tried to arrest him. That sticker was there for a long, long, time. Here it was in 2007, fourteen years after I stuck it there.
Back then, I held a rally on campus to raise support for these two officers. It drew a couple thousand attendees, including protesters who came by bus from as far away as Cleveland. And from that day forward, I could do no wrong as far as the campus police were concerned. And to be fair, I put them to the test a time or two. I was the lone conservative activist on campus during the both the Budzyn and Nevers days and the first Gulf War, and I was pretty quick to engage radical leftist groups when I found them. I got hauled off by the campus cops several times, but not once was I actually arrested. Instead, they usually drove me a couple of blocks away and then dropped me off and told me to go home for the day. I liked those guys.
The sticker is still there now, just recently painted over. Typical union painter work--they couldn't even be bothered to scrape or strip it off. It's still there under that paint. Maybe I'll go back with some paint thinner next time.
I took the dogs into the book store to buy camera batteries and a coffee mug. Don't know why Murphy is slouching but they were very well behaved.
Old Main, the original building that was once Wayne University.
On Woodward, we have the world-renowned Detroit Institute of Arts. I used to have a membership there and I loved it's galleries. But alas, I got into a shouting match with a couple of their security guards one day over a piece of art that I might have touched. (It was a modern art sculpture that's supposed to move.) I quit going for a while over that. Much the pity now.
Hecker Mansion on Woodward Ave. at Ferry. When I knew it, it was still owned by the Smiley Brothers Music Co., but the family let it go to seed and Detroiters, as is their wont, got in and vandalized and looted it pretty badly before a law firm bought it and renovated it again. Now Wayne State University owns it, having paid a reported $2.3 million for it.
Here's an abandoned building on West Lafayette Street that I remember well. It's the old Detroit Free Press building. My father worked there for many years. I worked there briefly in the early 1990s too.
The Rennaisannce Center, or Ren Cen. Built by Ford Motor Co. in 1976, it's now owned by General Motors.
The dogs are chilling in front of the fountain in Hart Plaza.
Here's the Ambassador Bridge between Detroit and Windsor, Ontario. And we have freighter traffic upbound.
Good timing. We got to see the tug Ken Boothe Sr. and it's barge, Lakes Contender. Launched in 2012, this combo is the newest addition to the Great Lakes shipping fleet. The tug is 135 feet long and the barge is 740 feet. The tug has two 5,400HP diesels for a combined 10,500 shaft horsepower.
This was new to me. A memorial to the labor unions that wrecked Detroit, screwed up Michigan's economy, and damamged America's ability to compete in the modern world. It's festooned with quotes from such leftists as former mayor Coleman Young, Eugene Debs, and Saul Alinsky, among others. The Spud liked the design, but he knows not the harm that unions caused.
Here's the Spirit of Detroit statue, dressed up to commemorate Michigan State, which is off to the Cotton Bowl this year, having trounced both University of Michigan and Ohio State this year. It was a very good year.
"In a musty old hall in Detroit they prayed
In the "Maritime Sailors' Cathedral"
The church bell chimed 'til it rang twenty-nine times
For each man on the Edmund Fitzgerald..."
These are the lyrics of the song by Gordon Lightfoot about to loss of that steel freighter on the night of November 10, 1975. (And yes, I remember that night too, and the reports the next morning about a ship, overdue and presumed lost on Lake Superior.) Well here's that cathedral, on Jefferson Ave. in the shadow of the Rennaisannce Center. They still hold a memorial service there every November. I went one year. It was incredibly solemn and moving. Officers and crew from many other lake ships were there, all in their dress uniforms.
It's gone now, Walt and Larry. It's finally gone.
Alas, Walt and Larry are gone, too. They've both since died. And other than me, I suspect that few people remember and even fewer people care.