Portrait of America’s Edge City: Manhattan

In permaculture, we say “the edges are where the action is.” You might want to read this unusually textured portrait of America’s accelerating cancerous cultural bifurcation as exemplified in the corporate takeover of Manhattan. Crammed with tiny, telling details.

The article reminds me of an email I got from my sister Marnie this morning: a real estate listing for the vacation home that my first husband, the late Patrick Cudmore, designed and built in 1965 for our large family at the confluence of two rivers in the Sun Valley area. The cabin’s origins started with a New Year’s Eve, slightly drunken, promise to Patrick by my Dad. He would let him design and build a cabin that summer.

This structure, with it’s airy beauty and arrangement of space, reconfigured the dynamics of our family from German, straight-laced “ranch house” regular to creativity and theatrical flair. (For years, we (mostly grown) kids composed and sang family Christmas Cantatas for the folks there, in the sunken living room overlooking the rivers.) Thank you, Patrick! The family eventually moved up from Twin Falls, full time.

CabinRiver

 

CabinFrontIts roof angles reminiscent of the old silver mine structures in the Sawtooth area, we called it “the cabin,” and still do. Then, the bedrooms consisted of one loft (for the folks), and two bunk houses (four kids in each). Two tiny bathrooms.

Cost then: $60 K? Remodeled (ruined) by the next owner in 1995 from light/gracious/airy to brooding behemoth with five bedrooms, four bathrooms, wine cellar, etc. Asking price now: $1,750,000. A good “get-a-way” for 1%’ers hunkered down in Manhattan, surrounded by corporate logos, tourists, and scattered remains of “the homeless.”

Postcard from the End of America: Manhattan

Excerpt:

In Manhattan alone, there are now 200 Subways, 74 McDonald’s, many of them open 24/7, and 194 Starbucks. Dunkin’ Donuts has 500 locations citywide.

 

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