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Arts

Weird Bird: Number One

A hooded merganser
John Bear
A hooded merganser

V.19 No.44 | 11/4/2010
Cadillac Ranch
John Bear

Culture Shock

A Place for People to Stop and Write

I had the opportunity—or misfortune, depending on how you look at it—to visit the jewel of the Texas Panhandle: Amarillo. I was meeting a friend from Oklahoma so we could take in some North Texas culture.

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Arts

Now that's what I call art

Volume one

You owe me a Cadillac car
John Bear
You owe me a Cadillac car

I love a place where I can see a piece of art and still step in cow shit. Call me unsophisticated.

Though I have been there many times because of my midwestern roots, the Cadillac Ranch outside of Amarillo, Texas never gets old. I traveled to the panhandle this weekend to meet My friend Malinda from Oklahoma. Amarillo is the midpoint between our respective locales.

Malinda had never been to the Ranch so we went on a lovely Sunday afternoon. Ten husks of Cadillac cars are buried halfway into the ground in a field just off Interstate 40. The original installation was further east but was moved in 1997 because of the expanding city.

It's a delightfully tacky piece of Americana. The cars are marked with names, monikers and whatever statements visitors feel like making.

People filed into the field from parked cars, little children in tow, filing through a gate in the fence. They brought cans of spray paint and made their mark. If you are planning on driving through Amarillo, pack a can of Krylon and stop for a moment. Let 'em know you were there.

Malinda grabbed a marker and wrote her name on one of the cars, customary. There is, of course, a sign on the road that says not to mark anything on the freeway side of the fence, lest you incur the wrath of the Texas authorities. A challenge to some, I presume.

And, of course, Malinda stepped in cow shit. I told her it was good luck. Or is that horse shit?

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    Phantongram4.19.2014