It's just this little chromium switch, here... (derspatchel) wrote,
It's just this little chromium switch, here...
derspatchel

A couple of notes about the Statue of Liberty

about.com's NYC guru has this to say about the Statue of Liberty and why access to the crown has been closed since September 11...
On that fateful day in 2001, she held her head high as she witnessed with her own eyes the horrors that took place just across from her watery home. Symbolism and sentimentality can be infinitely applied to her place in it all, and the National Park Service (the statue's operator) is taking it very seriously. Due to security reasons, the top of the Statue of Liberty will continue to be closed to the public.
The only thing is that Lady Liberty (who's been known to shed a tear for one cause or another from time to time) didn't witness any of that. The statue faces the harbor with its back to the skyline, more or less. Back when the crown was open to the public, you didn't climb up to the top for the view of New York. Nah, you climbed up for the HOLY CRAP I'M IN A GIANT STATUE'S HEAD factor (and when you're eleven years old, my god is that factor incredibly compelling.)

My favorite Statue of Liberty story involves Bill Gaines from MAD Magazine. Bill was a huge Statue of Liberty nut, and probably held the record for most collectible items featuring the statue. One of his lifelong dreams was to climb up into the torch, which has been closed to the public since 1916 (and not due to any terrorist attacks. I don't think.) Well, his wife Annie once pulled a few strings with the Parks Department back when this kinda thing wasn't viewed as a terrorist attack, and Bill got to stay in the statue after closing time (just like in From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler!) and, once everybody had left, the string-pulled Parks Dept employee unlocked the gate to the arm and let Bill, Annie and Dick DeBartolo climb up the arm to get to the torch.

Problem was, Bill wasn't a very small man (in his memoirs Good Days and MAD, Dick describes Bill as "being a dessert fan") and the passageway in the statue's arm actually narrowed when it got to the wrist, I believe. In climbing up to the torch, Bill found himself actually wedged inside the statue's arm with nowhere to go. Being stuck in the statue's arm was bad enough, but Annie and Dick had gone before Bill and were already out on the torch's little balcony. Being stranded out on the torch was probably worse than being stuck in the arm.

Fortunately, with a bit of moving around, Bill was able to unstick himself and back down the ladder, letting a very relieved Annie and Dick escape as well. They got to enjoy (for varying definitions of the word "enjoy") the torch but unfortunately, like Moses, Bill was never able to visit the Promised Land. (Though for Moses, at least he never got himself wedged in a giant copper arm.)

And that's just a few random things about the Statue of Liberty for you today. You're welcome.
Tags: one of the good ones, vanishing america
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