Rules are made to be broken.
I originally identified five criteria for inclusion in a Quirky Berkeley Post. Two are relevant here. Shown above is Moses with the Five Criteria.
Criteria #2 is that the material culture under consideration be non-seasonal.
Criteria #4 is that the material culture under consideration be in Berkeley.
Halloween is a holiday when children are allowed to break the ordinary rules of everyday social life, within reason. It is one of the few holidays that celebrates breaking rules.
That said, let’s go break us some rules. Why break just one rule when you can break two? We’re on thin ice, so we might as well dance, right!
The material culture under consideration here is from 1075 Alcatraz Avenue, Oakland. The green street sign with the oak – evidence that we are indeed in Oakland.
And it is seasonal. Halloween.
I have broken the Oakland rule before, several times. But never the seasonal rule.
The genius of this installation on Alcatraz just above San Pablo begs – demands – that I break the no seasonal rule. Yes, I know about the Glory of Mariposa Street on Halloween. I know about Russell Street. I know about Josephine Street between Cedar and Rose. Sorry – this one wins the quirky prize. They are mannequin heads in the tree and on stake in the ground, embellished with bottle caps and smiley faces and daisies and peace signs and beads and paint.
Do you see what I mean?
We have seen mannequins and mannequin heads before, in the home of Arlene Meyerson.
Lovely, but not hanging from a tree or impaled on a stake in the ground.
Good job 1075 Alcatraz!
I showed the photos to my friend. “It’s hard not to be creeped out by heads, no?”
I pointed out that almost all were tasteful and didn’t go ghoulish.
He said, “It’s hard not to be creeped out by heads.” I sensed that further debate would yield little.
I asked for his opinion on the post. “I guess that in certain situations breaking the rules happens. Almost has to happen. Imperative. Not optimal, but, imperative.”
Good observation about what we sometimes do. The post, though?