Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Main Street

With the present economic crisis the term "Main Street" has returned to the media. Occasionally words become popular that have different shades of meaning. My daughter objects to the current usages of main street while I feel the word maverick of Texas origin is being spun by the lip stick wearing pit bull from the frozen north and really doesn't fit the description of a GOPer.

The city where my childhood wandering took place had a main street, a city hall, a library, a bus line, a school system, an actual downtown town, two high schools, a city college, a newspaper and a name: Santa Monica, There was back then a Santa Monica Bank and many business and places with the name of the city attached. You could tell your whereabouts if you knew the difference between 4Th Street and 20 Th Street and you could actually get around without running into a maze of developments that prevented through traffic.

When my time has me here in Orange County, California this is not the case. Streets were not meant to be traveled in a straight line and the only direction one headed was to get on the freeway to leave. Adjacent Mission Viejo is full of streets with names that were made up to sound Spanish and was developed by a division of a tobacco company. A few older cities here existed before the urban sprawl and grove removal and they do have main streets and down towns but the sprawl had no room for them and the most visited Main Street is at Disneyland.

Saturday night I went searching for main street in San Pedro with my camera but my Nikon was giving me problems but I did grab a few spots. San Pedro is as different as night and day compared to the developed subs where bars, liquors stores, and local markets were not permitted in the zoning regulations or not needed. By accident I went into a bar, at least I thought it was, only to find a zillion pipes for sale and not plumbing pipes.

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