Milwaukee

I really like the Southern Gothic genre (is it a genre? Or more of just a tone?), and there's been a meme going around describing various locations in a Gothic tone. Basically, here's my take(s).

  • A man wanders the land on a summer day, dying of thirst. He asks for water, but is always directed to a device named for a sound it no longer makes. His body is found outside a bar in Bay View. Locals shrug and return to their business. This development is not new.
  • Stay long enough, and the whole world takes on a sheen of green and gold. Green and gold…and scarlet.
  • No one may speak the Pattern of the Cow - it is merely known. Those who ask are tagged as outsiders, that which does not belong. Assimilation is unstoppable and complete.
  • A brave man is one that wears purple and gold in September. A dead man wears blue and orange.
  • Locals wear pocked yellow triangles on their heads. No questions are asked.
  • Every city, every town, every puddle-what-was-a-lake lies concealed behind near-nonsensical strings of vowels only broken by the odd consonant. There is a song to these names, a rhythm that cannot be taught but that everyone seems to know by heart. There is power in a name.
  • Don’t climb on the rocks off Harbor Drive. They’re aiming for you.
  • The light is tinted grey most of the year. Some people say it’s because of the lake effect clouds, some say it’s because of the industrial dust following air currents above the river. The only thing true about the Grey is that no one notices its arrival until it disappears.
  • There is no First or Second Ward. At least, not anymore.
  • Another brewery appears in a 200-year-old pale-brick corner building that wasn’t there last week. It boasts a lake view despite its North Van Buren location. This surprises no one.
  • Bastille Days, Polishfest, Festa Italiana, Germanfest. It’s nice to see such a large collection of people who can change their heritage at will. The ability seems relegated to summer, however. More research may be required.
  • That building is not yellow. It’s cream. It doesn’t like being mis-named like that.
The End

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