Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Sometimes it takes a while to see how a dream turns out

faded sign saying "Future recreation site for our children consigned to the recreation board by progressive governing leaders", Tarentum, PATarentum has such an odd collection of the old and the new, signs of impending death alongside signs of hopefulness. This small town is filled with paradoxes.

Near Dreshar Stadium one can find this weathered and faded sign promising that something will happen in the future. One might write it off as a long-bypassed statement of hopefulness, or a statement that was never updated to reflect the actual use of the site for recreation, or perhaps it is just a statement that the ultimate use of the site for the youth has not yet come to fruition.

I like the way Larry Seben started his article about the alternate site for the Tarentum skateboard park with an allusion to "Field of Dreams." The sign above appears near the proposed alternate site. Did the progressive governing leaders around when the sign first went up even imagine that there would come a time when skateboarding would be a popular sport?

Once upon a time the paint on the sign was fresh, and the letters stood out with much better contrast to the background, and the words announced a dream that someone had. I don't believe the "progressive governing leaders" expected the sign to remain once the area had been developed into a stadium with ball fields. But the sign did remain, and wind and rain and sunlight took their toll. And all the while the sign continued to announce that there would be something still to come in the future.

For me, the aging of this sign is a parable about a hope held for a very, very long time, and about a dream that might take a very long time to come to fruition.

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