Old & Empty, or Young & Full??

I ran across this haunting photo the other day during one of those rambling Internet searches when one Google leads to another, leads to another. My immediate thought was, “That’s me if I was an old building!”

Michigan Theatre in Detroit

I must first say that tragically beautiful photos like this make me nearly cry, as I’m a big believer in the “if walls could talk” viewpoint. I have sentimental attachments to several buildings I grew up in, such as First Methodist downtown, my Granny’s house, and, of course, my beloved Shiloh. But it always catches me off-guard when I see a photo like this, of a place I’ve never been to (nor did I know existed before the Google search that guided me to the photo!). In a nutshell, the Michigan Theatre is a relic of Detroit’s glory days, and actually stands on the same ground where Henry Ford’s first garage was. Ironically, most of the theatre has been gutted to make way for a not-very-resourceful parking garage. I mean, really, how many cars can you fit on the ground floor of this building? But at least it’s still standing, and people in the neighbourhood like it because from the outside it still looks semi-majestic. The inside, as one can see above, is just in shambles, though it was allegedly used by Eminem for his movie and a video. Here’s what the theatre looked like in its own glory days:


And now for a side-by-side to get the full effect (and apparently there is more than just one level of parking):

From riches to a raggedy garage

My 2.5 readers might wonder by now where this post is headed. As I said, the top photo immediately reminded me of myself, but the more I thought about it, I wondered why. Here’s what I decided:

-I’m old! My youthful good looks are gone, but I have plenty of character and charm left. (Oh, to be 19 again…or not.)

-I  may not be remotely doing what I thought I’d be doing at 29-going-on-30, but at least I’m still standing!

-There’s still hope that I can become something great, in spite of my numerous faults, cracks, and shortcomings.

-Many days of my life I feel like I’m going down stairs to nowhere in particular, aimless and confused, and possibly into mid-air!

-There’s light at the end of the tunnel, AKA streaming thru the open-air windows, AKA *heaven*.

Anyway, just thought I’d share that rambling. Perhaps someone else will be as amused as I was by it. The way I see it, old buildings like this are kinda like people…sometimes we need to look closer at them before we call them a wreck, tear them down, and/or replace them. And even if they are a mess, we can still love what’s left of them as long as they’re around. Or, as in the case of the theatre garage, help them find a new purpose in life.

In a related note, I will hopefully be applying for internships for either the summer or fall semester here soon. I have an appointment pending to discuss my options, which I’m assuming will be limited since I work full-time overnight and take three classes at a time! But at least my load in the fall will be only one or two classes, so we’ll see. It’d be nice to get my foot in the door somewhere, both for the experience and the contacts. Who knows if I even wanna stay in the ATL area, but I’ll burn that bridge when I get there (no terrorist threat intended…gotta be careful these days).


PS–I almost forgot my punchline…am I old and empty inside like the theatre parking garage, or still relatively young and full of possibilities? Cheesily & predictably enough, I choose to pick the latter. Yes, this 4AM blog hasn’t been nearly as witty as I anticipated, but it is what it is! Hope everyone had a great, over-commercialized V-Day & a Happy Chinese New Year as well. (This culture class is wearing off on me in a good way. Year of the Tiger!!)

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