Multi-Purpose Use For a Monument To The Past
is full of monuments, built in memory of great people and great
events. Although many of the great monuments are often over-crowded
with people all trying to find that solitary moment of contemplation
where they can honor those people or events who are being memorialized
and re-connect with the past. On the other hand, these great monuments
often take a lot of space that could be used more productively.
When they named the huge expanse of grassy areas surrounding the
Washington Monument "The Mall", they got the name right,
just not the use.
As it stands the largest
mall in the world, the "Mall of the Americas" is in the
mid-west(I'm not much of a mall person, so I think it may be in
Minnesota), but with a little bit of forsight, the largest mall
in the world could have been in our nation's capital, where it belongs.
Had we used that vast expense of grass in the center of our nation's
capital, there would have been no need to name it the "Mall
of the Americas". That is only necessary if you're in the mid-west
as The Mall of Minnesota would hardly attract many shoppers from
around the world. But The Mall....that name, coupled with being
in the nation's capital would make those monuments both awe-inspiring
and practical. Reflect on our nation's great history as we shop....
The past meets the present.....
building, practicality and foresight do not go hand in hand in hand.
Most monument designers have grandiose single-minded plans for their
monument. The idea of combining the memorial with a more practical
use has not for the most part been an idea who's time has come.
But Carrboro, The
Athens of America,(if you read the article, buried deep within
you'll find that reference) with it's liberal mentality that's always
looking to plan for the future is a leader in multipurpose monument
construction and renovation(Read about The Bruceway and The
Statue of the Dancing Bruce) is leading the rest of the country
in Community Overpopulation Exponential Growth Planning. Despite
a few hiccups on the way(605 Main Street),
we should all be proud of our little town and our hearts should
swell with pride as we drive past the Town Hall, home of the zoning
office that allows us to grow as we do.
If you take a ride down
Lloyd St, you'll see one of Carrboro's greatest monuments of the
past. A very moving memorial, yet extremely practical. I'm talking
about Rice's Glass' World War II POW Memorial. They have taken a
part of their property and dedicated it to the memory of our soldiers
who spent time in German POW Camps(Think Hogan's Heros and The Great
Escape). When you come down the driveway, the wire fences with razor
wire on the top and the blue buildings which are modeled after the
dormitory style facilities in the German Stalags creates an awe-inspiring
view to say the least.
went there to meditate and pay my respects, when it suddenly dawned
on me that they had produced one of the most practical memorials
the world has ever seen. As it was afterhours, the gates were locked,
but inside the gates I recognized the fleet of Rice's Glass cars
and vans, safely protected from the outside world. It took away
a little from the momunment having modern vehicles in the picture,
but I suppose in the field of multi-purpose use monuments, there
needs to be some compromise somewhere.
But The Carrboro News believes an award to Rice's Glass is in order
for the Best Multi-Pupose Use for a Monument. Congratulations, Rice's
Glass... and for our readers, if you ever want to go down there
and reflect upon our history and make a connection to our past,
pick up a sandwich and walk through the gates(they're usually open
during the day).... with a few minutes of contemplation as you look
at the razor sharp barb wire(In the past it kept the POW's in, but
in practicality it's to keep THEM out)you'll start to have an appreciation
for why we are where we are today.