I Accidentally Caught "America" On My Instagram

My day was full of teaching and meetings and responding to emails -- not much to photograph.  So I snapped this picture as I drove Addison to the Orthodontist.

Once I doctored it slightly it was uncanny how much this reminded me of the sort of postcards that were very in vogue during the 1950s.  This iconic America: over-saturated color, revelling in the institutions of communal life, clean, sunny full of optimism:  this iconography moves me immediately to a position of disbelief, faux nostalgia, bemusement and detachment.

But the crazy thing is?  I didn't find this postcard in a bin at an antique store, I lifted my camera / phone while stopped at a stoplight on the way to a real-life orthodontist appointment?  And boom.  This is what I found.

Part of me wants to accuse the community of North Canton of trying to sustain a mythology that is past its prime, but another part of me feels guiltily complicit for exulting so much in the happy coincidences that aligned in order to render this picture for me this afternoon.  The other part of me?  Wants to start inventing startling subversive performance art pieces to put on in the massive front lawn of the (abandoned) Hoover Factory.

Next time you drive through North Canton, keep your eyes peeled as you drive through the center of downtown.

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