Category: Sights from the Road

The Snoopy Barn of Nazareth, Pennsylvania

The Snoopy Barn of Nazareth, Pennsylvania

Snoopy as the World War I Flying Ace

After seeing a photo of it somewhere in passing, a quick turn around the ole Google-machine said that the Snoopy barn was just a hop, skip and a jump across the Pennsylvania border. Seeing it in person was impossible to resist. Isn’t it wonderful?

The Fairman Farm – Snoopy Barn – Nazareth, Pa.

Google Maps

Paulverizer – The Cyborg Muffler Man of Buena Vista, Virginia

Paulverizer – The Cyborg Muffler Man of Buena Vista, Virginia

This ain’t your mama’s muffler man. No, this? This is somethin’ else! You’ve got that familiar sturdy jaw and that manly mug but that’s about it.

And a nice little hat tip to the motorcycle.

Unfortunately, with the sky so hazy and the crazy backlighting, I didn’t snap very many good pictures. I should probably learn how to use a camera. Since I bungled this, you should probably take a ride along the Blue Ridge Parkway and pop off in the town of Buena Vista, Virginia to have a look for yourself.

Paulverizer on Roadside America

Just Passing Through – Small Town, West Virginia

Just Passing Through – Small Town, West Virginia

Rhodell, West Virginia – a place I’d never heard of prior to standing in front of the alternating colors of the post office’s awning. Why would I have? It isn’t a pass-through on a way to a bigger town. It isn’t famous for anything. No, it’s just a little tucked away place where normal people live their lives.

Normal people, doing normal things.

While I was taking a photo, a young woman came out of the house to receive a little boy getting off of the school bus. When the bus pulled up, a young man also came out of the house to see that same little boy off the bus.

Instantaneously, I’d made a judgment as to why two young adults were home in the middle of the afternoon based on the realities of my own existence.

But – maybe one was a stay at home parent and maybe the other had time off work. Or maybe one was on vacation, on sick leave, worked nights, cared for a sick relative, or it was their regular day off. Maybe one of them hadn’t started their shift yet. After all, I myself was there in the middle of a Tuesday afternoon. The reasons two parents were home in the middle of the day, during what you’d call 9-5 work hours were myriad.

And yet… based on what I’d passed on my way through that burned out and vacant town, I assumed something else. At least one of them might be out of work.

Out of work. That was a real possibility. Where would they work, anyway? Where are the jobs in that little pocket of the world? Of course, I have no idea what the truth of their lives is. I was just some opinionated asshole passing through town, making assumptions.

Later that evening I wrote some notes in my travel journal about what I’d seen throughout the day. “Poverty isn’t a tourist attraction, and yet I feel as if I cannot tear my eyes away.” I feel this so strongly.

Seeing poverty firsthand leaves me with a sense of helplessness. There is a chaos that stirs inside of me and it’s like I just want to “fix” everything, help everyone, give them a place to work… and I can’t.

I look at my life and my surroundings and become desensitized to them. This place where I live becomes reality. Everyone, everywhere lives in this comfort, right? Wrong. And in the wide arc of my own life from childhood to now, I should know this. But, how quickly we forget when lulled by our own good fortune.

Rhodell, West Virginia
2000 census
The median income for a household in the town was $17,143, and the median income for a family was $19,167. Males had a median income of $17,750 versus $18,750 for females. The per capita income for the town was $7,582.
– Source: Wikipedia

Cubanola Cigar Ghost Ad – Radford, Virginia

Cubanola Cigar Ghost Ad – Radford, Virginia

The town of Radford, Virginia had a 1-2 punch of beautiful ghost ads. There was the Wine of Cardui, R. S. Carson Druggist and Cubanola Cigar combo. And then there was this.

Hello, gorgeous!

Cubanola 5¢ Cigars – All Havana Filler

I don’t know anything about tobacco and it’s history. I don’t smoke. But, I sure do have an affinity for its olde tyme advertising.

While looking up Cubanola, one of the pages I found was a history of cigars, and the packaging tins. Some of the tins were just wonderful. Give that a look-see.

Keen Kutter Kuttlery &  L.W. Clark Jeweler & Optician

Radford, Virginia Ghost Ad – Wine of Cardui

Radford, Virginia Ghost Ad – Wine of Cardui

In the town of Radford, Virginia there are two excellent walls with ghost ads on them. While appreciating the aesthetics of the ads themselves is one thing, falling down the rabbit hole of finding out what the olde tyme ads are for can be its own kind of fun.

When I googled Wine of Cardui for Women, the first result pulled up a site called The Quack Doctor. Well, now. If that isn’t an interesting name. Their Wine of Cardui page says:

Woman’s modesty and ignorance of danger often cause her to endure pains and suffer torture rather than consult a physician about important subjects.

Pains in the head, neck, back, hips, limbs and lower bowels at monthly intervals, indicate alarming derangements.

Oh, for cryin’ out loud. Modesty and ignorance of danger? Alarming derangements?


Image Source: Smithsonian Museum of American History

So, basically, Wine of Cardui was $1.00 PMS wine? It was also recommended to stave off the effects of “falling of the womb.” Falling of the womb? Gah! That sounds… messy. Can you even imagine? One minute you’re throwing a bag of frozen peas in your shopping cart, the next thing you know your womb falls out. Talk about embarrassing.

Maybe I should stick to looking up ghost ad tobacco products.

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