Snippy Little Things

It’s often said there is a reason for everything.

No one said it is a good reason, though.

That brings us to today’s topic. Our Founder, Claudia McGill, made a trip to our nation’s capitol, Washington, DC, and on her very own stumbled upon something that defies reason, yet is reasonable, and surely someone had a reason or knows of it.

Here is what happened. “I was walking down the street in front of the Watergate. For those of us of a certain age, a shiver goes through us, but in my case, I was there because my son, Mr. Margaret McGill (the former Claudia McGill’s Son, this is his married name now), works there. In a totally legal capacity. No, he is not a lawyer, but he is not breaking the law. That is what I meant. I think.”

Gently guided back onto track, Claudia McGill explained further. “We came upon this pair of scissors lying on the low wall. Just lying there. Not flung there, splayed open, but neatly and calmly settled there. Well, we were astounded, as you can guess. What could be the reason for a pair of scissors out here?”

Then, something else happened.

“A man came along with a large black dog. The dog frolicked around, as dogs do. Suddenly it made a beeline for the scissors. Ran right up to them. The man followed and apologized as the dog then leaped over the wall and continued up the hill. Whew. For a moment, I thought these were the dog’s or the man’s scissors and that we might be accused of coveting them and possibly about to abstract them from the wall. Which of course was not our intention. But I realized the dog simply wanted to run up the hill. Nothing to do with scissors. Scissors were not the reason. Going up the hill was the reason.”

Looking slightly befuddled, Claudia McGill said, “It then seemed best to move along.”

Just Scraping By

The Museum does not pretend to address questions of economics or global trade and yet these little objects certainly bring the issue of budgeting and spending to mind, or at least to the mind of Claudia McGill, Chief Economist (on loan from The School of Experience).

“People have spoken of just scraping by for millennia or possibly it’s milleniums, I’m not an English professor”, she said in a recent interview. “Usually it means that funds are scarce in the economic unit being spoken thereof. I am not as familiar with actual physical money being scraped by – by – by what must be some enormous force that has caused the money itself to deform, obviously in some anguish, I would imagine.”

Yes indeed.

“These two pennies have encountered rough usage in the commerce of life and show the scars. Imagine the effort they must have made just to keep circulating, and finally giving up the effort and falling to the ground. We here at the Museum are proud to include them in the collection. I think if we looked around, which we will when we have some time, maybe, or maybe not, anyway, we’d find a couple more specimens like these,” said Claudia McGill, curator.

No comment on the state of banking, commerce, global trade, or any other topic is offered by the Museum’s inclusion of these items. “We take in any deserving object from off the ground,” said Claudia McGill, Founder. “It’s up to the politicians and psychics and people doing dissertations on economic affairs to dig into the meaning of money being scraped by.”

Certainly a topic for further study. In the meantime, take a look at these pennies and thank them for their service.

Museum Correspondence

Here at the Museum, we have a mailbox like anyone else. And so often the contents are mundane items – the light bill, the heat bill, announcements, flyers, and other specimens of modern life that have washed ashore and found refuge in the black metal box out by the street, or in its cyberspace equivalent.

At times, however, we do receive something that stands out and so we sit up and take notice. As you read this missive from a loyal Museum-goer from South Africa (and I think you will remember her and her discussion of marbles, finding and losing them, that is…), imagine the Museum staff sitting in the break room with our doughnuts, coffee, power bars, and herbal iced tea, perusing the words coming to us from so far away, and reminding us that the ground beneath our feet is the same the world over. Treasures abound. Look down and see them!

Read on. We do so love Petru’s writing style.

Dear Miss Claudia McGill, Curator, Claudia McGill Museum,

Following is the background to the artefact as far as Petru Viljoen
can ascertain and is prepared to admit to:

Time-Encrusted Chain of Events found in newly turned soil in an epoch
of gardening where there was recently none before. Unbroken chain
still locked but there isn’t a door anymore. Not a splinter left.
Having a holiday from self-searching (gardening is the best diversion)
finding someone else’s bit of their past. Whose shall remain a
mystery. They did want to visit, but their names remained a blank.

Yours faithfully.

Petru J. Viljoen


Come Back to Us, Claudia McGill

Oh, dear. Our founder, Claudia McGill, has been occupied with other endeavors, if you can believe it possible. The Museum has drooped, indulging itself in a self-pitying spasm of self-pity. Well-deserving items have sat waiting for a kind word, pretty much in vain.

“I’m feeling very badly about my neglect,” admitted Claudia McGill,  Founder. “I just got caught up in other projects. Oh, you know that already. OK. Well, I’ll just say that I’m vowing to do better here. The Museum is so dear to my heart. Besides, it’s getting on to springtime and you know how that livens up the collecting season.”

Yes, indeed. And until then, here are some lovely pieces who are grateful for some attention. Museum-goers, you are so appreciated!

Nutty Today

There are days at the Museum where the flavor is nuts, all day long.

“I’m sure you’ve had this kind of day,” said Claudia McGill, Curator. “Today’s not one of them for me, thank goodness, but I certainly know the feeling of going nuts.”

When questioned about the question of nuts, Claudia McGill, Cafeteria Supervisor, said, “Oh, for heaven’s sake, what a question. Of course we have plenty of nuts here. The ones that are food and the ones that eat the food. Oops. May I shouldn’t have said that last part.”

A squirrel outside the front door was seen digging, somewhat frantically, in a flowerpot filled only with dirt. Or so it looked to the untutored eye. When questioning was attempted, he ran off, in a huff at being interrupted. Or maybe he just lost focus.

“Society cannot survive without nuts,” said Claudia McGill, Chief Handyperson, from her office in the basement (she was offered one upstairs but said true handypersons always have their headquarters in the basement and she wasn’t going to buck tradition). “Or bolts. Nuts and bolts. Like coffee and cream. Hammer and nail. Jack and Jill. Bert and Ernie. I could keep going…”

This specimen was found in Wyncote, PA, by Mr. Claudia McGill, and he picked it up right off the street. Notice the shiny scuff marks. It’s about an inch square.

Nut 1-16 #1 small

Here’s a group of wanna-be’s, compared to the fellow in the picture above, but maybe they’ll grow.

Three nuts 12-15

And here is the first specimen, all glammed up.

Nut 1-16 #2 small

Valiant Effort At Appearing Grown-Up

Claudia McGill, dedicated gym-goer, kept her eyes on the ground today and found this object.

“Well, I was walking out to my car. I was at the gym, see, and then I was finished, so I was leaving. With all this snow, well, they haven’t cleared all the sidewalks. But they had cleared the one in front of the building. So I guess that part doesn’t matter. Anyway, I saw this little object in the street. Not really the street, the driveway part that goes in front of the door. You know.”

Football 1 1-16 small

She goes on to say, ” So I dropped my gym bag on the sidewalk and I fished out my camera and I didn’t give a thought to the fact that a car was picking up some kids down toward the door or that they were looking at me which I don’t think they were, those kids were making an awful racket getting in the car but I was worried the car would run over the football. Because it was so tiny. The size of my thumb joint. So cute.”

Claudia McGill, Curator, takes over the story. “Apparently the finder, who really can talk a blue streak, took a photo of the football in situ. You can appreciate the tiny little guy, the loneliness of his situation, the peril from multi-ton vehicles and those unheeding gym-goers. I am very impressed, though, that she used her own foot as a scale model. That takes some thinking.”

Football 2 1-16 small

 

According to Museum personnel, Claudia McGill, the finder of the object, has offered to donate it, but not before she gives it a good scrub. “See those white circles on the asphalt, well, you know what that is, it’s that chemical stuff they put on the roads to help with melting of snow, but it’s all dried up, and the football had a coating too, and I feel so sorry for it I’m going to get it all clean and nice.”

The Museum’s spiritual advisor/ resident philosopher/ designated noodler-on-call, Claudia McGill, said: “If you think about it, well, that little football out there, exposed, alone – well, what a reflection of the human condition. You just can’t be more alone than a tiny somewhat squashy toy football lying in a chemical stew of a parking lot, can you?”

A Museum-goer, Claudia McGill, had her own opinion. “I think it looks like a little spaceship traveling between planets, don’t you?

The Museum has no official position on these or any other ideas. We will leave it to the viewers of this poignant photo to decide.

Football 3 1-16 small

Deposed Monarch?

Today the Museum welcomes an interesting new resident – the Master Lock, found by Mr. Claudia McGill, in a puddle, in the alley behind his office building at 18th and Market, Philadelphia, PA.

Master lock #1 1-16 small

When asked if the Master Lock could qualify for inclusion, Claudia McGill, Curator, was very quick to respond “Yes.” She said about the Lock: “Obviously city life has been very hard on this proud object, used to ruling or excluding or including at will, and now, literally, brought low.”

And sadly the Lock has suffered some life-altering physical changes in its journey. “It’s easy to see that the lock has been cut off, isn’t it?” said Claudia McGill, Museum-goer. “So what’s the story with that?”

For that information, the Museum turned to the finder, Mr. Claudia McGill. He said: “Looked like to me the lock had been securing a parking lot gate, holding a chain together. The chain was still hanging on the gate when I picked up this lock from the ground. Guess someone lost the key.”

It seems a likely explanation. And the further damage to the Lock was probably caused by the big trucks who frequent this alley. Thank goodness for the sharp eyes of Mr. Claudia McGill. And everyone, please, check for your keys right now. It’s not only you who suffers if they are lost.