Thursday, January 12, 2012

Now You See It, Now You Don't

In case you haven't noticed, things change.

Here's more proof:

Dec 24, 2011

Jan 8, 2012

That may not look like much of a loss in the grand scheme of things - or even the small scheme of things - but... I think it represents a loss all the same.

The structure in the first photo was known locally as the Japanese Tea House because that's what it was for much of its existence. It started off as a regular house until a US Army linguist who had served in Japan bought the place in the 1950s and transformed it into a showcase for Japanese culture.

That linguist even went so far as to import a Shinto shrine from Japan and set it up in the back yard.

Next to a carp pond.

Here's the postcard view of it that they used to sell to those with a quarter or two to spare:

I never found the time to take a tour of the place while such tours were still being given but apparently hundreds and hundreds of area school kids did thanks to the invention of the field trip.

It was one of the most unlikely things I've ever stumbled upon in central Ohio and it's likely to continue to hold that title until the Democrats regain control of at least one house of the state legislature.

I'm never exactly sure how special little things like this go from being eye-catching gems to empty lots, but a news story from about two years ago did a fair job of succinctly charting its decline.

According to that story, the linguist's son sold the place for $500,000 back in 2005. It was sold again for $330,000 in 2007. The city apparently bought it a year or two ago for about $126,000.

Now it's an empty lot.

Ready for redevelopment, they say.

We'll see.

Maybe someone will actually put something on the site that's even more interesting, but I have my doubts.

In fact, I'm betting on yet another ugly CVS drug store popping up, but we'll see.

The fact that someone actually decided to put a Japanese Tea House there less than 20 years after Pearl Harbor would seem to indicate that almost anything is possible.

Bottom Line: I remain open to being surprised.

Got lots of money you don't know what to do with? Why not give it a shot!

*Suddenly wondering what it might cost to turn the site into a trilobite sanctuary*

1 comment:

  1. Maybe you could build a Ground Zero Mosque. Sell falafel and memorial statues of famous suicide bombers. You could sell copies of the videos they make before they strap on the bombs to help make them more famous.
    I'm just brainstorming. Maybe you could the falafel burger equivalent of a White Castle slider and have a drive-thru on the side of the mosque. In fact the mosque could just be like a Macdonalds inside except with a silver crescent instead of golden arches.