All About the Lines: Business Building in Snow

A winter storm arrived in the middle of our week; a nor'easter, in fact, for whatever additional bonus points that's worth. We had been waiting for it all day on Tuesday but on that day, the snow churned to our south and all we got were gray skies. We held our collective breath. We knew it wasn't over. It hadn't even begun yet.

By the time I woke up on Wednesday morning, the snow had started, and it continued heavily for hours and hours, finally tapering to a stop around 3 pm. As is my custom in wintry weather, I took the bus, which allowed me to enjoy the snowstorm without worrying at all about the usual travel stuff: how would I get to work, and once I got there, how would I get home.

If you can believe it, it was snowing so hard when I arrived on campus that I could barely get a picture. I usually carry an umbrella in the snow, and finagle my camera around beneath it. But the snow was spinning down from all directions at once. I could only take photos safely from under roofs and overhangs. It was very limiting, and I didn't last long.

Smack dab in the middle of my day, I had a lunch date with friends at the Nittany Lion Inn. Not just ANY lunch date, but a BISQUE date. Lobster bisque. Quite possibly the best we know of anywhere. Yes, hard to believe, I know. Bisque! Right here, in land-locked central Pennsylvania!

There are six of us who lunch together, and we call ourselves the "Risky Bisquers." We know each other from work, we are friends, we love to laugh ourselves silly, and bisque is one of our shared passions. We gather about once a semester, though in fall, we went twice because quite a few were sick and couldn't make it the first time.

On this day, each of us ordered a bowl of the fabulous bisque and a salad. I felt brave enough to try something I'd never had before: the fancy baby spinach and Kennett Square mushroom salad, which included baby spinach, sliced red onions, chopped bacon, pan fried quail eggs, and a warm bacon dressing. (Yes, this was the first time I ever ate a quail egg that I know of. It looked just like a fried egg, only much smaller.)

They brought out the bisque first, and oh what a joyous event that was! I insisted on snapping a photo of my friends, to capture the moment, and I have included it in the extras. From left to right: Michelle, Maggie (sticking her tongue out), Laurie, Terry, and Leah. The Risky Bisquers! And yes, you've seen that dining room before.

After lunch, I decided it didn't make sense to bus over to my work building and then back over to campus later, to catch my bus home. So I found some quiet spots and hunkered down on campus with my computer instead. I also took the opportunity to walk around a bit and snap some snow shots, including the one above.

I adore the new business building they built on the spot where Mitchell Building used to stand, at the corner of Shortlidge and East Park. It has marvelous lines, and it is a fun photo op any time of year, but especially in the snow.

Let us speak for a minute of the good lines, especially those found in buildings. For some buildings, the good lines live outside. For others, the good lines live inside. (The only other campus building that even compares to this one for the sake of lines is the Katz law school library, next to the Arboretum; and I'm talking about the lines of Katz's interiors, not exteriors.)

I think there is something that lives inside of me that is only soothed by the good lines. I can Zen out and lose myself for minutes at a time, taking pictures of a building like this. It feels good to me, like some kind of healing of a possibly broken thing. If I could purr, I would.

I have talked about containers, and how I feel about those. The promise of a good container is not just that it looks nice, or is the right size, or that you have a whole set to match (win, win, and win). But what an empty container holds is HOPE. The hope that if you find just the right containers, the whole world will fit neatly into them, and everything will be orderly and good, and it will all finally make sense.

Likewise, good lines give me hope. I look at these shapes, all lined up, and my faith is restored in the possibility of an orderly outcome for all the messy things of this world. See how the lines come together, how they shift apart, how they disappear together into the distance? How they almost seem to sing? Those are the good lines: they give me hope.

The soundtrack to this rather lengthy posting that covered everything from snow to lines (and hope!) and bisque is Harry Belafonte's Jump in the Line. I'm including two versions, one from the film Beetlejuice, and another that is a collection of Rita Hayworth dance moves. Enjoy!

Sign in or get an account to comment.