flightless hag

A chronicle of the adventures of birdwoman: a lonely, talentless freak who wanders the internet in search of entertainment.

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Location: Philly

I'm a 40-something married white female, survivor of weight watchers, avid reader of pulp. Dogs (not cats), extreme right (handed, not politics), ENTJ, alto, wanna-be knitter.

March 14, 2005

50 Things I Love About Philly In No Order Particularly - #45

(Like the title says, this is a list of things I've loved about philly, in the 17 years I've lived in this area. Also, like the title says, they're in no particular order. It's also not an inculsive list. These were just the first fifty that popped into my head. I'm gonna dish one up fresh, weekly. Also, I've started at the "bottom" to keep you tuned in. It's part of my nefarious plan for readership. Mwa-ha-ha-haaaaa.)

Bizarro Tourist Attractions

Every city, big or small, has its tourist attractions. There are the standard “Empire State-ish” kind of attractions, where lots of people know about ‘em. Then, there’s your “world’s biggest pile of string” attractions, and you’re wondering what snake-oil salesman got the founding fathers of a city to pay to make ‘em. (see Roger And Me for prime examples here).

Philadelphia, being one of the older cities in North America, has a number of famous tourist attractions. There’s the Liberty Bell, Betsy Ross house, the Art Museum – you know, all the stuff you can see on a horsie-carriage ride.

And then there’s our “alternate” tourist attractions.

We have a wonderful
fringe festival once a year, where live art springs up on our very streets. You never can tell if the fight you’re seeing is real or a staged event.

Please Touch museum has my vote for the strangest name – do you really want to take your kids to a museum called the Please Touch? Well, actually, you do. It has all the stuff kids are normally discouraged from touching – a working bus front, a supermarket with checkouts that work, and all sorts of other fun stuff that kids are encouraged to play with.

We have the
Eastern State Penitentiary - home for a very brief time to Al Capone. It’s this cool old prison which has tours. Wear a hard-hat, though, because you never know when the crumbling edifice might decide to bonk you on the head.

My favorite, favorite weird tourist attraction, though, is the
Mutter museum. This is a medical museum, the likes of which I’ve never heard of before. There are specimens the likes of which I wish I’d never seen. There are all sorts of tumors, preserved corpses, pieces of corpses. And it’s all done so scientifically, that it almost doesn’t seem so revolting. It’s only when you think about what you’re actually viewing that you get a little freaked out.

So, come to Philly. Take a trolley tour of the park. Take a horsie tour of Old City. But don’t forget to look for the attractions down the side streets – some of them will knock your socks off!



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