I have a nephew, we call him “the Dude”. The Dude is 3 years old and when asked who he wants to be when he grows up, he would tell you he wants to be Lightning McQueen. As you might been able to guess (if you are popular in the under 10 crowd like I am), the Dude’s favorite movie in the world is Cars (I know, as I have bought 2 of the 5 DVD’s he has worn out).
The first time I watched Cars with the Dude I was struck by the message of the movie and how Preservation-minded it is. For those of you who don’t have the movie committed to memory, (for which you might need to be committed, and you can hope it will be in a cool place with all the architectural details you want to contemplate while your on your way to your padded cell) the plot of Cars goes a little something like this: Rookie race-car Lightning McQueen ties a big race, thus instigating a race-off. Enroute to said race-off, Lightning gets lost and damages a road in a small town off Route 66 (Radiator Springs) where he must stay until the road he damaged is repaired. In true Disney fashion, Lightning then falls in love with the town and its inhabitants and sees what happened to Radiator Springs because it was by-passed by the Interstate. Long story short, Lightning preforms admirably at the race-off, becomes famous and establishes his headquarters in Radiator Springs, thus putting Route 66 and, more importantly, the town on the map once more.
I was so struck by the Preservation theme that it got me thinking about things I read or watched when I was younger that had a Preservation theme to them, and may have helped make me the Preservationist I am today. Without further ado, here is a short list of Preservation-themed books and movies that a few Preservationists raised in the late 70’s through early 90’s might relate to:
First: Mike Mulligan and his Steam Shovel. While this book is an Oldie, it is definitely a goodie. Mike and his steam shovel Mary Ann illustrate one of the best examples of re-use I can think of.
Second: The Boxcar Children. After surviving in a Boxcar on their own, these orphans are reunited with their wealthy grandfather who saves their boxcar and moves it to the grounds of his house so that they will always remember their time in it.
Third: But No Elephants. A tale about a soft-hearted old lady who collects animals a bit more exotic than cats. When she finally can’t stand the cold her new pet elephant helps her prove that buildings don’t need to be torn-down when their location and size are no longer suitable.
Fourth: Goonies. When a rag-tag group of friends from Astoria, Oregon want to save their homes from an evil developer, little do they know that a long-dead one-eyed pirate will save their lives, friendships and homes.
As I said this is just a short list, but one that I’d like to add to as time goes on, so please feel free to comment with additions.
Hey You Guuuuuyyyysss…..
June 1, 2011 by henriettahobsonrichardson