City of No Imagination

I have been in some cities where they allow in the imagination of various groups to decorate the fire hydrants tastefully to enhance an area of the city. Not us. We are boring. When I was young, down south, they were all red, then when I was a teenager, I remember a mass repainting of them all to silver. Here they are a flat boring yellow – both sides of the river, different states, same boring yellow, different style caps.

Below are some of the more creative ones google had in their picture library which I thought were awesome and wanted to share. The gumball machine was really cool.

I vote for more creativity that displays real talent, not just slapping on paint to be different. In Cee’s Fun Foto weekly challenge, she sent us off to find fire hydrants, possibly looking for ones similar to what google has… we don’t have those here.

And while the saying may be true below…..

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True that!

Try to remember to always be kind.

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Walk Around Town

In being able to walk around town and get views of neat looking doors for the Thursday Door post, I also ran across some interesting street art that I thought I would share. I have a very busy weekend coming up and may not get to play much so doing another for today.

As those who have been reading my posts, you have seen my posts on the flooding here of the Mississippi River. But this is still an area that loves this monster of a beast. This first painting has some age on it as it is beginning to peel but it really reflects times gone by with steam driven locomotives and paddle-wheel boats carrying people and cargo through the midwest and along the rivers.

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Hope they touch it up before it flakes too bad.

Then as you walk around you see street paintings that area different type of detailed and some that are of the modern flare. Back in October, we were challenged with a prompt about what is art? I posted one called Perceived Art that showed the detailed side of the one below. It is so large is spreads across both side of the road under the train track.

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The tentacles go across the street and hold things like pencils 

Then a little further down the same street you get a more unrealistic take on art.

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Bird in an argyle vest, hmm

But the two below are really creative, making shop windows and doors out of a flat brick wall.

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I didn’t know whether to show this one here or with Norm’s doors. There are 3 doors…

As we smile at the neatness of someone’s take on art, remember to spread that smile around to maybe brighten someone’s day and always be kind.

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Reflecting Back on History

Man has the arrogant attitude that he is superior to all beings because he can communicate and analyze situations. I question that theory as all things were created by God and God doesn’t make mistakes…and the animals were created first. Hmm, ever thought of that? Just because we can not communicate with the animal kingdom, does that mean they don’t communicate. Watching Animal Planet on TV tells you that the animal kingdom is more complex than ever first imagined.

Eden was the beautiful place God created for beast and man, along himself, to enjoy and thrive in.  Then when he created man in His likeness and gave him free will, things began to change. In theory, as Adam looked around Eden and saw how magnificent it was, that should have been enough, right? No, but that snake of a fellow, with his lies and twists on words ruined it for all creation and he has been using those same tactics on man ever since for further destruction of this world.

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I bring this up due to a painting on a building that is downtown. A reminder of the cruelty of man since the beginning or rather since the banning of Eden. I won’t open this can of worms any wider as it misses my point of what I am trying to make. When Europe first discovered America, thinking it was India and thus calling the people Indians, that was the first sign intelligence.(Sorry for the sarcasm.)And that wasn’t the first time man ran over a people to prove one groups superiority over another but again we are not opening that can of worms as there are so many many opinions. But today I want to talk about the beauty of art. Wow, that is a full right turn isn’t it? Not really. While I was out walking last week when the sun did dare to shine I ran across this mural and was reminded of the plight of the Indians. Not just in running them off, but the diseases that were brought to them from another people.

This area was inhabited by the Sauk tribe of which Black Hawk was a leader. Because I am not from this area, I do not know a lot of the Indian history or if this mural is of Black Hawk or one of the other prominent leaders. I just know there is a lot of reference to Black Hawk here. A college, a shopping center, banking, street names and so on. When you first walk up to the building you see that the building is flat but when you walk to the front to see the mural, it has a 3D effect and is truly beautiful.

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Ordinary flat face building.
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Amazing art looking like he is inserted into the building and standing on a protruding rock.

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So remember that sometimes we all have our own agendas but those agendas must be thought on correctly so that we don’t overrun someone just because. And the “because’s” could have as many reason as there are sands on the beach.

I challenge you to remember the love and kindness God initially intended for all of us and that if we truly stand with Christ then we must remember to reflect His love, not our history. Let the love of Christ flow from you and reflect the graciousness He lavished on all of us and always be kind.

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Beauty of the Ocean…in Iowa

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The states of USA 

I currently live in Iowa on the Mississippi River. When I was a kid, when trying to learn the state locations, the center of the country was always easy because of the man in the middle. For those not familiar with that teaching, I will explain. The foot or boot(purple) of the man is Louisiana, his pants(green) is Arkansas, his shirt(blue) is Missouri, his head(green) is Iowa and his hat(tan) is Minnesota. Now the face of the man is carved by the Mississippi River and where I live, the river comes across sideways forming the nose. I tease my grandchildren saying I live in the nose of the man in the center, so you know what that makes me. The point I am trying to make is the location of this state. Iowa is one state down from Canada, 4 states from the Pacific ocean, 5 states from the Atlantic Ocean and 3 states from the Gulf of Mexico, so basically we are land locked with the river being our main water attraction, several lakes scatter about. We are one state away from Lake Michigan which acts like and ocean but what ocean freezes over hard enough to drive a truck on in the winter. Oh, and just to throw this out there, I am 4 states away from my home state of Georgia which borders on the Atlantic. I do miss the ocean.

But this area seems to be fascinated with the ocean life, I guess because they don’t get to see it unless they go on vacation.(there are even Christmas tree ornaments) I posted some pictures in an earlier blog about the ocean street art on the railroad bridge in the center if the city. If you missed it, it is here. But last week when coming back through a section of town I don’t go in often I found several buildings of street art, one dedicated to ocean life, real and imaginary. So I though I would share those with you today. I find street art very fascinating due to the image painted and the enormous size.

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The building and the artist, 2010
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Turtle, shark and giant squid

Then you have the whale, porpoises and the mermaids. Architecturally speaking, I find it interesting how the windows are at angles and protected from the weather.

Below are wonderful pictures, thank you internet, that give a glimpse of true ocean life, an area of life on this planet we have only begun to understand. Enjoy.

And as a daily reminder to myself and anyone else, always try to be kind. You would be amazed how it makes you feel as well as those you are kind to. And staying with the ocean theme, I show you that even ocean animals understand the process of being kind.

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