99% Invisible is starting the year off with the sixth installment of our staff mini-stories. Kicking off 2019 are a set of tales about a perpetual lie about New York City, karaoke, a 50-foot-tall burning puppet, the result of a Canada-U.S. border dispute, and time thieves.
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
This is ninety: nine percent, invisible, I'm roman Mars. Mrs Peel, To the twenty eighteen, two thousand and nineteen mini stories, episodes where I interview the staff about their favorite little design stories and stories about the built world that don't quite fill out an entire episode for whatever reason, but they are Quinta. Ninety ninety I stories. Nonetheless, we have stolen tax, mythical alleys, detached: U S, territories, machines that bring joy to people's lives and fifty, but screaming monster that we will burned to the ground floor. Ever in need of a conversations daughter. The many stories are argive to you stay with us. A verse producer, Joe Rosenberg, okay, so Roman. Imagine you're watching a tv show like set New York and lets say it's one of those buddy cop comedies, where they bear the rookie with the grizzled veteran, and you know it opens a say on foot chase. You know the closing in on this.
Speck streets Manhattan her wisdom by. Let me ask you like nine times out of ten, if the suspect docks around a corner to get away from them, he usually ducks into a what We is that what you're? Looking for? Yes, ok, yeah, I'm kind of leading you, ok, you're, ok, now met net. Imagine another episode. Same television show the rookie copies woken in the middle of the night, because there's a fresh body has been a murder. They knew him at the crime scene. Now picture the crime scene, the police day, the shock outlined Where is this crimes? And that is definitely an unholy correct? Yes again and now imagine humor me for with just to complete the rule of three in another up, said gridlock breaks up a drug deal It's going to be our right, and not just for like intelligent crime, procedural, I mean imagine like, say other roles, an alley my play and movie in setting a New York restaurant. You sure I guess you're? U r rush!
on worker or a dishwasher. You take out the trash in them in the back alley, you're like having a secret rendezvous in the back alley. Totally like that's an alley is where things happen, re examined it. It's all alley everything. But the point is that, regardless of what is happening in the film or two thousand, shall all of these Alley scenes help Sal audiences on the same idea of New York, that that New York is a city of ten thousand alleys, each with its own secret history? There's just one tiny problem with this, which is that there are no alleys in the EU That can be true. It's hard to wrap your mind round, because we ve all been raised on this myth that New York has alleys, and there are some in the outer whereas but like. If you ve spent time in Manhattan and you really, sure memory, you will not remember passing by an alley at least not like a classic alley that, like leads between two streets as the fires, like usually maybe at best like it, there's a glorified like loading
right right. I can't specifically remember one you're right, but that makes seems amazing to me right and proper alleys. They just there just not there. So why do I think there is, and then why are There are different question which the right question right right was so first, why aren't there? And this is because, when the city planners laid out the grid for Manhattan, north of house and street and eighteen eleven in something called the commissioner's plan, they purposefully did not include alleys. They figured that they didn't need alleys. Does he got the high frequency of the EAST West Street which are much closer together to each other than the north South streets, kind of obviating the need for short cuts arm or anything else that might break up their wonderfully perfect grid, but also- and this was probably the real motivation. It was a way to maximize real estate because this way without any alleys, cutting through the blocks the landlord can squeeze in more housing and the land was worth more and after that
Almost no alleys were built because, of course, why on an alley. When you can own a larger building, and so the result is that today, Manhattan is at best a dozen things you might call alleys, but they're all South Canal Street in the old is part of the city that was built before the grid. Mom. Raising- and we know that you mention it- the thing I, is the most when Morgan Industries in New York is the piles and piles of trash which, when I live in Chicago, that's put in the air that is not on the street Chicago is like the antithesis. I got something like two thousand miles of alley totally and it's so key to the idea that city, but in that case it's actually true, but you know it's weird lotta people dont with this too
together, including New Yorkers minute, a veneer golly separated them. Even a lot of native new Yorkers have fallen prey to it. One of my favorite things to do with just I gotta worry that people from New York events like where was the last time you remember saying I really gotta get somewhere in the quickest way to get. There would be to take the alley shortcut. It's not it's not a thing it only when you pointed out to them that they can a step back and go out its rise. So this is new car and he's a film location scout who worked in New York for many years on films like war the worlds of Wall Street or, more recently, the new ghostbusters, the Smurfs movie, simply move out of Manhattan. Section of you got another across the Smurfs go to New York. I mean what else could it happen?
when, when you're television shows turned into makes sense- or at least in the seek war- and he says but Anyways Nick Nick says it. This belief that New York has alleys is like the bane of his because he'll tell a director, you know near New York is not city of alleys and Europe does not have allies, but you were to come director that that there are new allies in New York. It they'll look at you like. You, have two heads and think that you don't know how to do your job. So invariably reluctantly wines up showing them the dozen or so alleys south of Canal Street, and I would think of the film about alleys in New York that looked like how you want to look I'd say it's like five or six and of those five or six. Most of them are either privately owned and so the very expensive to shoot and where there are other permanent issues-
just a corpse constraint, parking constraints, leaving only this one alley, just south of Canal Street and EAST Broadway, in which almost every one votes and that his Cortland Dowie, which is just as it is, a reality and courtland. You have to understand this. It's the alley. You'd been seen your entire life, you just don't realize so, like blemish, let me show you some photos. That's got the fire escapes it. Sir he's got loading docks, it's got a brick send graffiti and it's an alley really is. It is like it's, the perfect dilates very archetypal. This is that this is a further this, though I know that he asked
I have totally seen that arrives in three hundred loan order of so do not exactly, and yet it so difficult to such a degree that if you walked by it, you indexing notice it because they would feel so intensely now it also keep them there. You know like, even if you'd never set foot in it, take it for granted because you I've already better. So I'm pretty sure that whenever the first time I said, I walked down that alley. It might as well have been like the hundredth time. I walk down that alley, but here's where things get especially weird, The reason Cortlandt looks like the platonic ideal of a New York Alley is precisely because it be used in so many movies, and so this is an egg thing that happens where once a filmmaker, who wants to film a cordon quote Classic New York Alley, seen seas. Courtland there like this is perfect one. Learn them into contributing to this fantasy of New York, because when a director
as the location in mind, he is created, location in had head and no occasion you ever find we'll ever match up to what it is right. But Cortlandt is what you picture. The director pictures it in his head. Any Eighty percent of the way there's not ninety, it's a hundred per cent of what he had in mind and that too, because the people directors see a version of New York and other movies and commission and then go and want to recreate it when they do their own film in town showed. The fad truth is that the sort of stereotypes that gets perpetuated from moving to movies and some now Cortlandt is forever caught in this. Leave that to the point where it can seem like it's all its used for is filming by basically everyone all the time. When I used to drive by him and I swear to God, I was on a weekly basis. The lot order series would you no problem in the alley every other week. But the thing is they all did it: they all do it and still do it. Every every major crime show cop show superhero show anything that is still in New York has building Cortlandt, like I would that with a hundred percent, confident
even the one alley in Manhattan, doesn't really functions and- its base. We have film set at an end just to give you an idea of Hollywood's the degree to which its like treated. As a film sat in Hollywood zeal in pursuit of the platonic New York. Halley like a story, often calls for an alley to beat like filled with trash, it's part of the classic concept. Since that part the archetype, but of course real trash and grime, would be hazardous to the cabin crew, and the first thing they do is actually clean. The alley, with pressure hoses to the point where it's been a prestige and then you buy booty trash at movie. Trash is large. Plastic bags were trash bags that are filled with approved logo sort of trash. So it's like Jenner milk bottles and zero boxes, but I believe each bag of movie trash it about forty to sixty dollars, a bag
so, there's an industry just in making our you look like a book like alleys, but one especially kind of interests me that all this is that I think, with some cities we don't really know much about them, so they get to be their own thing. There might be like cliches about San Francisco Chicago, but no one outside of San Francisco truly thinks they know the city, but New York, perhaps more than any other city. In some sense, it belongs to everyone. Everyone feels that they know it right because they seen it in a million movies. It is like America City to so many people it is necessary to so many people and of its own right and theirs. The level granularity. When you talk about uptown down ten rise so of Manhattan, Bridge Brooklyn Bridge, like like there are more like household names in terms of like the geography totally normal mix at its also kind of like you know, people think they know it
They don't, and the result is that at some point the idea of New York has overtaken the ring Audi of New York, a kind of takes cultural precedent minds even in lot of new Yorkers, you never realized. New York has no highways, and it's because it's almost like an actor that type gasped right like actor. That's being asked to play the same old role as hey: you did that one roll really really well back a nineteen. Seventy seven so keep doing it for another fifty years, and I think you think movies are just so much more interesting when you print portray the locations featured for what they are and let them be a real character. Instead of just a backdrop, sue at any point in its film history was, it ever mean represented as core lend. Our. Almost never lake but an mixes. The men in black three we had seen where well Psmith,
tracking down an alien, and they actually do at least attempt to idea the alibi. You know you're not supposed to be North Canal street. Can you get it wrong in that their south of get out? You did so close, so close? Will they tried ended? They do and investments even ask of man in black dress. Well, thanks! So much Thank you up the circle. Composer genre. What's the story after both first, few question Roman, so you ve never done karaoke. I've never done karaoke. How is that possible? I've? I've played the the singing.
Parts of guitar euro- that's almost karaoke, Oki Norma, not is performative within a bar with strangers. I've never done that doesn't count So I want to tell you about the person who invented the karaoke machine. His name is escape anyway, as you can Imagine he loves music. Of course, this interview with him and I found out that he started working as a drummer when he was still a teenager and high school and after he graduated he was perpetually in a traveling band that did cabaret music. For nine years, It's a really big achievement. His interview. He likes to kind of talks MAC on himself, and so he says one night, I realise that, no matter how much a practice I could ever be as good as someone with God. Given talent you found, I was enough to age my life as a band man and after nine years on the road map.
You tell the no regrets I went home. It seemed like It is more than just his musician ship that took him out of road life like it seems like he wasn't really common. David fairly all the time and people he was working with like there are really they partied allied made drinking all their money away. So twenty eight and living with his parents and Kobe Japan. After all that well and so, nineteen sixty eight Carry Oki is kind of already like a social activity, but it's done with live instruments, so they are like bars where you have liked musician playing a single guitar, a keyboard. There's something in people singing along the hits, and this was wanted. Dyson regular gigs when he was living there with his parents, and he says playing the drums now he learned how to play keyboard. He says that he taught some three hundred songs, which once again just like a humble brag
because then he says, because then he goes on to say that he is like by every I tried to learn more than three hundred songs. I like I just, would forget them. Mr mixing, my wound, so yeah those case is pre down on himself, I find it really charming, but so he is he's working at these karaoke bars and his like a bunch of regular karaoke singers end there was this one business man who would always sing with him who can and changed everything this business man was about travel for work and he wanted to be able to sing for his colleagues on the trip and they It recalls the business man saying to him. Your keyboard playing is the only music I can say to you. How my voices and you know what it needs to sound good and task. I couldn't take time off work, so he taped himself playing some of the skies. Favorite songs and it worked. The guy was happy dice guy got paid,
and I'm sure you can see where this giant total after his success with this business man, stay in nineteen. Seventy one commissioned a friend to build a machine out of three existing machines and amplifier a coin box and an eight track car stereo, and he called it. The Duke eight, So a hundred yen put in a hundred men, and I would the machine but turn on for five minutes, so you could put on it. Paper instrumental music and sang through a microphone and Roman? I you to see. One of these machines are clearly beautiful if it is going to slack Oh wow, It really is beautiful yeah, it's a cat. It's red and white, it has great little, Lord Knobs and a place for the you know that attract Cosette I would call cart machine and in the radio business Press in there then a little back red cap on the right that stores, library, of attract apes beds of lovely
Is that him smiling right? Next to my order, delightful, looking man in every picture, he said I love it. So them Take on these first attract tapes where they, the ones that did did he composed those who had already? How did he get the music for them? they were, they were popular songs and ed. Dykes gave recorded them with his band herb. Actually am I guess he Where did his band playing the songs? He says that early on in the process, they fired him from playing for somebody. Again for days getting bored, so he just focused recording and mixing the music right, which is really really important, part or totally totally gaff does get recorded Nokia shake the recording and mixing. Thank you sure. Roman nursery does the really best over the for sure,
funny to me, because, even though it was fired from his own back here, is a real hustler gigabytes all over Kobe, to leave these machines from him. He got contracts with major record labels to use all these popular songs but he didn't patent the machine home. No, he says when I first made the Duke AIDS a brother in law, suggested. I take out a patent, but at the time, I didn't think anything would come of it. I was hoping the drinking places in the Kobe area would use my machine most people, don't believe me when I say this, but I dont think carry Oki would have taken off like it did. If there had been a patent on the first machine, I I think that's actually pretty
her assessment Astley. Now it's a really nice and joyful thing, even though I've never participated in it was a nice and joyful thing. A lot of people think so, and this machine is really really lovely in its actually nice to think of it as it just existing in the world to make the world better and not necessarily to make him the money it does make some people monies This is other person did take out a patent on a laser discourage machine, but he's not part of the story. No, No what's right, amount history. Here then the lad It goes on. Besides, They didn't build the thing from scratch: the amp, the microphone, the eight track player, even the hundred young box machine all had patents on, but there is little hope he could at all. We got for you think, totally yeah, I don't know anything about it about patent, especially japanese panel. Will I don't know about you patent law, actually no expert of U S, patent law, but if you come up with, a new use for it
I know nothing and prescribed that you sit inside of the patent, it doesn't have to be three machines that could be one machine to do a certain thing as long as you change a little bit something and change its purpose, so Keto, had the right to a patent for sure. So it is. It is more of him talkin smack on himself Bio at what I really love about. This story on a whole is that he seems pretty okay with how all this turned out. Talk a lot about just like how glad he is that this brought so much joy into the world and he says I may not have the original patent some say I would have made eighty million dollars last year and that was about add here, but I have good friend. And a family, I love, and I can't help it smile every day, deal with things some uppers yeah is the last thing was. I just wanted to say that these cases that too
carry Oki. He and his wife and daughter and three granddaughters, get out a song book once a week and see who can sing the most songs before going horse. At which sounds of crazy, that's away harder than I want a party and here and there to his story. But I think it's better told from him so will put a link to that on our website. Nice thanks and we should totally Bulgaria, hoping some totally. I think we have made that up thanks thanks from the rule of law about a year ago, our senior editor Delaney Hall, move from beautiful, downtown, Oakland California, back to New Mexico, where she grew up she now four nine Anthea remotely and her many story is about this phenomenon in the new city, where she lives, which Santa Fe
the phenomenon is called zebra sober. Is a big deal here and Santa FE. Basically, every year a group of people in the city bill this enormous marionette, that's named so sober and in Spanish, so sober means anxiety, so he's lake all of the city's collective sorrows embodied in this huge puppet, wow, that's amazing, so dizzy. What does he look like? Well he's fifty feet tall, he is, dressed in a long white gown. He has these very arc angry eyes, they're, usually rimmed with green or black, and what happens is that every fall. This group constructs a news as Oda and about fifty thousand people.
There in one of Santa FE biggest parks and they burn him. Wow Burnham puppet yeah. They it's a very it's. A very intense candle hey good feeling, events I mean basically the crowd chance burn. In Birmingham burn him and he's set on fire and he is slowly engulfed in flames. And I assume they burn him, so they can burn their collective anxiety that he represents yeah yeah exactly so because because he represents glad it's this way that the city purges sadness, every and people get to participate in these interesting ways.
And one of the reasons so so, but I is so flammable is that he is stuffed with bushels of shredded paper and where that paper comes from is in the weeks leading up to the burning. Anyone with an excess of gloom is encouraged to sort of right down. There gloomy thoughts on a piece of paper and to leave it in this thing called the gloom box, which, at least in the past, has been located in the offices of of one of the local newspapers. So people contribute police reports em. Mortgage documents and divorce papers. I mean just anything they might want to burn. It reminds me of others were of bonfire. Rituals like like Bernie Man or Somethin, was a lot of people go to around here, yeah, I mean to sober, has been around a lot longer than burning MA am been around since the nineteen twenties by their
definitely some similarities. Lake both were developed by artists. Both events began relatively small, like in someone's backyard or on a beach and then grew into something, much better, and am both actually draw on other traditions, they go back even farther, but but one thing that's pretty needed. A sober out. Is that because he's a puppet he's capable of kind of rudimentary move men, so please swing around his jaw is hinged, so his mouth opens and closes. Also makes sound. So lay a little. The sound of the advancing and as you
flailing. At the same time, yeah he's flailing his mouth is opening and closing it's really. It's actually really troubling you then to go to as a kid. It is sort of seared into my memory by this is actually like the thing I most swarm until you about, because I I recently learning just in the past year, so that the voice of Zobeida is performed, live and there is one guy who's been doing the voice for about twenty years ago, and I learned this thanks to this germ of local reporting from Kayo e t. Actions at the news me. I see him no grumpy all men and that's the territory
get into this is this is over? You know that want to get rid of him. They want to destroy him. They want to burn him and my the way I play the character is fighting, stay alive, running Michael Alice will take on the persona of our collective sorrow for the nineteenth time, despite the title of old man, gloom Zappos voice battles, several emotions there are times when, but he also like he's crying protesting adamant, I'm not gonna. Let you do this
We get Ellis as the audience at fifty thousand should always know. What's his oberon is feeling not only do I want the crowd to hear him, I want them to feel it, and even after nineteen years for Alice, the big night is always exciting, I'll sit down and have a sandwich and laughter dune. After that, I've got butterflies and I won't have anything till after it's all over on Friday night, those butterflies, joy, all Mexico's gloom up in smoke yeah ages. I love this news club cell. Might, I think it's one of my favorites ever and so It's the combination of the reporters, seriousness or maybe mock seriousness, and that this is like the supply, ridiculous nests of white, your scene, which of course, people can't see it but to describe it Michael Alice, the voice of the sober
performing the sounds of Zobeida, but to this big, empty baseball fields with probably later in the night, will be filled with fifty thousand sixty thousand screaming people, but but at the moment is entirely empty, so good, see if you like, a little taste of what Michael Alice's about. But what what is he really like yeah, so this was the I think I could find on the internet a about him and from seeing this club. I definitely wanted to learn more, and so I looked him up and went to talk with him and what I'll? What I learned is that he was born and raised in Santa FE, and so Michael told me that you know as a kid so sober was like this figure. This monster, who almost seemed real like actually alive and that sends a real mess. Was this thing
that the community continues to really play into an and cultivate growing up. I remember there would be little stories in the newspaper talking about how does Oberon spotted in the royal on the east side of town and hear stories of sheep being missing from the area. Little things I dad did play in to China. Make these things in real in so from their hunted Michael, actually become the voice of the zebra. So as a high school, where he started violent hearing for the events, he would help where building the puppet stuff like that, and he just kept being involved a little more each year and eventually he was If you wanted to help with the voice, so it was just sort of a matter of hanging around for long enough and suited Michael, do it any differently that he had something special to the voice when he took over Michael didn't
for more voice. Acting experience. He's he's done view. Is jobs throughout his life, including working at those hardware and running a dj business. But he told me that the Mai in thing he wanted to bring to say so, but I was that sense of real mess that kind of alive nets that I was talking about earlier, and to do that, he said he and to find ways to really empathize with Zobeida this grumpy, man and to see the whole events unfolding from his perspective. Knowing that Nobody wants its demise, they want to see it happen, so I I do my best to trader to fight with just dinner with my voice and there are times when Our more sound like he's crying begins to realise that there isn't anything. He's gonna be able to do this,
Of course. In our conversation I was like pushing to try to understand. Is there some deep? The memory or experience that Michael taps into in order to perform I asked him about his personal history. I asked him about some health problems he's had recently, but he said you know not really just comes when it's me. You just got readily accessible, grumpy old man, there. I guess there's a little bit of their deep inside. So that's that's the voice of Sabra, and I really like thinking about the fact that when I went to see so so, but I burn back in the eightys, it was my goal for
forming the voice and if I take, if I take Vienna, my my daughter next year, that it will probably be Michael again But next is our technical producer Sharif use of his gun good morning, right so roman? If I told you that I have Add another map story. How excited would you be fixed? Okay, good master, I know so, maybe maybe if you could just go. Google maps rockwork The main thing we're gonna be looking at today as the border between the? U S and Canada
and pardon my siblings. I have some dental work along and yeah excused. Thank you and the thing they need to pay attention to is the forty nine parallel in the Pacific Northwest so of America. I'm so one thing here: ok yeah any Probably maybe now can notice a little somethin networks off. Are you talking about point? Robert said sticks out right here yeah. Robert Little Peninsula yeah, so Lawson Peninsula. Maybe you can this sort of describe what you're saying so when Robards is often peninsula off of the area of it looks like is complete. You cut off from the? U S backs up by water, I have to buy land, you don't get to it. To kill it's got a few very, very gritted streets,
uh yeah, it's it! It is kind of like an exclusive, but but not quite yeah. It's it's a semi excavators space, but it difficult to get into your cell and send exclusive exclaimed. Oh so yeah Point Roberts Billy and Washington State part of what can county. So I first heard about point Roberts from Podcast called stop podcasting yourself hosted by Dave Sham Car and Graham Clark to Vancouver rights, and they re saying that of some Vancouver S go, there goes only twenty miles away, or so in order to pick up packages, because shipping across the border is actually quite exciting, save, I'm and also to get cheaper gas. It's also rumoured to be the sight of a federal Witness protection program like where they re
ok- and I just happened to be in Seattle a little bit ago, and I also wanted to excuse to go to Vancouver and have you pay for it, and I decided to go. Should I just play some border crossing? my first border crossing. This is the peace arch border from Washington, save it exactly. I area addicts superposition. Today, I'm going to point Roberts to report a story. That's just like a weird little part of America that you have to go through like to border crossing to get to Sol yeah, exactly some very nervous. Hear my voice crack a. I think, there's a there's, an instinct that arises in every Arab when crossing a border also funny story. The last time I crossed a canadian border. I was three or four years old going into
the american side of Niagara falls and the Border guard looked ends like as everyone in this car, American and might have like a magician, she's, American and he's America, the back, and I don't know, I'm french I'm being kidnapped guy so there there's some trauma around the world of young Serif I was a little scared young camp. Over much nicer than I was gonna is ok. We make a stop senator non between, but I'm sending the night in Vancouver tonight have thanks man unscathed unscathed, yeah. He was a very nice border. Crossing guard did ask if I had been rested, which apparently, as a thing like. If you ve been arrested, you can't you have to get laid special permission to get in
Canada if you have a criminal record in the states. So anyway, that's another twenty or thirty minute drive to border number. To welcome too little man. I get us cross the border into Point Roberts, scenically gateway. That sounds like something I'll do I like seen exe and basically immediately to my right after I crossed the border, there's a place that receives packages of twenty four seven, automated retriever vacuum, brood coffee parcel services, it seems like there are a lot of places for postal service, and that was the in throughout the entire time in Point Roberts, basically any shop, no matter what it was selling or what it did they offered to accept packages for you. It's gotta be back to the familiar land of America, God the gases and gallons? Oh, maybe it's not
interesting. A measure, the gas and leaders here. Even in America, that's nuts, our leaders, yeah leader. So what else did you find these little differences? Decides the leaders revelations yeah there wasn't much. It wasn't the most happening spot free. Would it like five square miles a population of thirteen? hundred and fourteen or thing to the latest your senses and twenty ten but in the summer time it can grow to about three or four times that, because a lot of canadian vacationing come in, I went to the Post office closed Saturday.
Is there a school system more? I saw that there is one primary school. I believe it goes up to grade three or four. And then everyone who is older than that has to co across four international. Borders every school day to go to school and Blaine Washington like, yeah and I grew up in a fairly rural place with long school bus ride. So I very much empathize and feel for you and he point Robert School kids, who are listening. Driving down the main drag. The biggest a store, employing Roberts demand. Really I ran into their restaurant desk. Shit, it's called the reef tavern happy there right, reef. Tavern is calling to you. That's that's what we call you. I don't know if people know that it was, and I had a wonderful server named Tony and he was just the absolute
We thus person and told me about how people from Canada go to that restaurant to get medium rare burgers because, apparently about health, codes in Canada are a little more strict about how what's the deposit meat terms. Can we really have longer so the real lead I saw him go to point, I'm a journalist from open California unease, oh yeah, when we look you're so cool that you ran into the other Oakland. What at the end. That's not even the weirdest power or love. Let me play your little little somethin Gary have mind blown prepared. What was that? I thank you for down somewhat rehab israeli troops there, some for Iraq
yeah, you guys have the same catchphrase, God you're amazing! I don't. I don't understand how the I live in such a way that is supposed to go there. I know something we trip there. Did you ever figure out why the gases and leaders I didn't, do much silk sleuthing, but my guess is mainly to market the Canadians today, no much gas, the pretty yet exactly and actually at the reef tavern. I saw too lovely Canadians named Jason and LISA they had come in that very day to pick up a guitar loop pedal, sailor on Ebay who didn't wanna chef it across the border for face its super comecon of yet more EU just run across a person who is doing these type of thing expecting totally, notably looking the town LISA saw that the average visitor spends less than twenty minutes only five percent of visitors.
Stay longer like an hour anyway, would never been here for super. Where ever you call There is so much I'll give you guys. My phone number and user friends yeah making friends Coincidentally, I showed them where I was staying in Vancouver and it was basically right next to them, and they invited me to drink wine and accurate their Christmas tree, and it was just a really lovely evening, so Where did you ever get information about the witness protection thing? Well, I guess I can neither confirm suffer from northern an eye. It actually reached out to Gerald Shore the founder of the Witness Protection Programme and he responded back and he says I have no information on Point Roberts, Washington, which I guess you can take to be.
Like anything you want, it's also Nice adventure in the name of the show: yeah thanks for thanks, fairly expense, no problem, nice reef, yeah thanks
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He began doing them. Curtain, I'm industry, yogurt carbonized, are doing time many stories almost every up. So how can I get a quota? Is theirs. We some story that current has that relates to the sorry we just told, but this when we found a place, for example. This will just never quite fit yet, and I really wanted to tell when we have the perfect opportunity yet so, basically, last year the Ford Motor Company made big NEWS in Detroit and they said they were up. I and renovate Michigan Central Station in this like a big tree, fishing, sorely grand central Terminal type train station yeah, it's huge old, beautiful, it's a grand central but much much taller and his in downtown Detroit yeah. It's really visible when you're coming in on the highway. It's like one of the most visible tallest structures on the side of the city and so forth, based still in Detroit bought. This and I ve been, and suddenly there is all this news around the fact that they're gonna come round this big press conference and
explain to the city what their plan was for this old building that had been deserted for so long and then leave it to the big press conference. Someone anonymously approached the Ford Museum with this surprising artifact. It was as big round anti cock that used to hang really prominently on one of the walls of the station. Let's face it, train passengers needed to know the time, so the clock is huge. It's been gone for a very long time now bill for it says he couldn't believe it when a secret approach was made. To get that clock back. Somebody must really loved it and love the translation cause. They took very good care of somebody stole this gigantic Clark from a translation, and then they were turned it when they heard that the greens, she's be renovated. Yeah, it's pretty remarkable, and we don't really know much about the person who returned the clock I mean. Maybe they just took it to try to help preserve it. Maybe they were in the original thief, it's possible they bought. It are founded
on Ebay, for he had a great or inherited it only really know for sure is that they carefully wrapped it up and then told the folks at the Ford Museum where to find it we're defiantly. They left it somewhere and they like Ganem as they left it like a long. The sight of a building their pictures of this. You can see it like the ie. Just our wrapped up in my class drafted in hightail delirium, hightail there and integrity yeah. That's amazing is coming round the clock, but bring a couple guys and attract wow. It's amazing that he felt so inspired to give it back. I mean I think this is sort of a civic icon. It's this stunning massive Mozart structure, and it was this by the same architects as grand central Terminal in New York in the idea, originally was that it would be the grand central the MID West would handle Hollis passenger and freight traffic and become over this landmark in the city, so they put up these its filled with all these beautiful details, these marble walls, vaulted ceilings, copper, skylights and its huge, its eight.
Reinstall than there are restaurants and shops them below and then office spaces above in so but obviously it fell on her time. So what went wrong with the Michigan Central station? Well a lot of things arguably, but the rise of the car definitely help drive it out of business zoom out, more people were driving out the suburbs and the city itself and station founded. To use and at first the opposite cleared out, and then the shops and restaurants dared to close down and then finally, in the eightys, the ticket boost shut down and basically the whole place was just locked up and they just been. It was left India that point yeah and there was talk over the years of yellow tearing it down, but it had this status, as is a landmark and that help protect it from demolition. Well, you know they came up with plans to try to use them. Slick, ideas to turn into a police station or conventions and our or even a casino and others, spend out so the building just kind of cap being old and changing hands, and the owners before Ford finally did do some work on it likely drained the basement.
They had some new windows and they put up a security fantasy. Obviously that must have happened after the clock was stolen, yeah, leave Everley were aware that things are disappearing from the building and I think they want to put a stop to that. I mean a lot of people or business building to take pictures, were you not just explore it, but along the way hundreds of artifacts were taken to so the clock is really just one piece of the puzzle: there are lots of little things taken from this building. I imagine over the year, yeah really large peace, that Turkey will people to move, but definitely one of many things and returning. It actually started this kind of bigger movement, because once Ford had the Clark in hand, they were able to put out a Collins, a hey look: we returned the clock, If anybody else has stuff, maybe you can bring it back to you and you won't get in trouble. No questions asked leave it on the side of a building right and it works. People have now come forward to offer up old station artifacts, including family
and plaster medallions and bite fixtures and all kinds of well informed actually has a wishlist too. They walked back things like the ticket window, grills elevator, transom panels. Other clocks, better the failures and, basically, anything that that is sort of considered critical to the historic character of the building re in what are they are planning to restore it as it was where they plan to do with all these artifacts will something's wrong. We go back into the building and others will end up in local museums and what sort of side benefits is that so many things can be used to model copies to If you have one planet or Medallion Julian, make a bunch of other ones. In their innovative building on that makes sense, the idea that this thing is gonna be like a passenger too. In terminal again or is it something different now it's gonna be something different, basically for hired snow. Had this survey
This international rules in design firm to help them build out aid new campus there, the calling it the courthouse campus things could be the centre for afford to develop you know autonomous vehicles and other urban road related technology is near Central area where they can do like actual on the road testing and the station itself is gonna, be at the heart of this, and it could be He populated actually with a lot of the same things out before, like restaurants and shops, and above they're gonna be offices, but also. Condos now in areas that Ford can, you know, move some of its people and its partner organisations up into these spaces. Have you seen here's the artifacts and and the renovation at all, yeah there's great images of the clock and it sitting outside raft of and their allowances.
Work for those that can have show what was there what's missing and affords plan for what this building is. Gonna look like when their hold down with this campus awesome again. Can you put them on the website warrants? Oh yeah, of course, sounds good think occurred Ninety nine percent of this war is every travelling. Katy mingle court, Karstadt Delaney Hall Sharif Use of Amity. Gerald shown Rio turn matter. Joe Rosenberg Vivian Lee so vehicle Asker and me Roman, Mars, a project of ninety one point: seven K, L W in San Francisco in produced on radio row and beautiful downtown Oakland California, we are a founding member of Radio Tokyo from Pierre Axa, a collective of the best most innovative shows in all upon casting. We are supported by our sticker, loving coin carrying listeners. Just like you
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Transcript generated on 2020-02-14.