Albany, NY

The way it was explained to me, part of the reason for this building’s size and shape was to completely cut off the grand Episcopal Cathedral of All Saints that is tucked tightly behind it, in ultimately a Catholic versus Protestant squabble. I learned that on my tour of the Cathedral. When I took a tour of this building, the story never came up.

Albany, NY

This statue of Moses remains a prominent feature in Albany’s Washington Park. I found an 1893 New York Times review that gushed over its authentic use of a middle-aged Hebrew man as a model.

St. Petersburg, FL

I sent this to a relative in Tampa at a time when there was a spate of sinkholes in the area that were getting national attention. I thought they might try the slogan “Now more sunken than ever!”. It would have been nice to visit here, but the chances seem slim now that I have no relatives anywhere nearby.

Piercy, CA

I mailed this to a friend who had the recently-planted tree in front of his house mowed down by a drunk driver. He was caught when video footage from a nearby gas station captured a vehicle with branches sticking out of it.

(Don’t worry, I’ll have more to say about carving gift shops and automobile tunnels into California redwoods in future posts)

Newburgh, NY

I don’t know why 1776 is in quotation marks, or even appears on this card at all. This was Washington’s Headquarters in 1782 and 1783, after the Revolutionary War was over. At one point the soldiers, not having been paid for a long time, circulated a few letters proposing a revolt, which came to be known as the Newburgh Conspiracy. Washington made a surprise appearance and talked everyone down, in sharp contrast to a more recent president who confronted a conspiratorial mob and talked them up.

Rochester, NY

Here is what the Ellison Park web page has to say about its disc golf course: “If you’ve never played before, there’s never been a better time to get out and learn.” I respectfully disagree – I think that a January evening during a pandemic is one of the worst possible times to learn.

Salt Lake City, UT

I have a friend who collects instances of spurious quotation marks, so I sent him this one. I guess here they are technically being used properly, since “Mormon” is the popular rather than the official name of this temple. The original message name-checked folks named Frank, Art, Bill, and Gil, all names that were a lot more popular in 1947 than they are today.