I was walking past Calhoun Square, a shopping center in Uptown Minneapolis, looking at the various remodeling projects that are underway. Calhoun Square has always been a development with serious identity issues, and it seems it is about to be "transformed" once again. To signify this, the developers have dozens of stock photos on the temporary walls covering the many closed shops--one of which was once a designer pajama store--that "seemed like a good idea at the time." These stock photos seem to be sending mixed messages about what is to come for Calhoun Square's new shopping, dining and residential experiences.
Here is how I interpret said photos:
"Once completed, you will all rejoice--although one of you will not be having as good a time as everyone else."
Yes, it appears the earthbound "Get-Me-Someone-Vaguely-Reminiscent-Of-Julie-Bowen" type on the right was clearly told this was a no-jump shoot, which is why she didn't wear flats ("They make me look squatty!"). She looks like she just got kicked in the back.
"My new condo has Wi-Fi! Too bad I can't afford a damn chair!"
I have actually seen this same stock photo used in at least two other places. Whoever she is, she sure dressed up to sit on the floor. It also makes me wonder what the hell she's celebrating. Here are some possibilities:
1. "I just got my corn watered on Farmville!" (Or whatever. I don't play Farmville. I find it ridiculous that there are more Americans who play Farmville than there are actual farmers. Also, I have done work on a farm. It sucks on a Grapes of Wrathian level.)
2. "I booted! They said I couldn't use a computer because I'm a girl, but they were wrong!" (There is something ironically girl-power about this image. For her to be celebrating whatever she is to this exent, it could only mean that no one thought she could do it. Thus, her victory only reflects the inherent sexism of the image. Deep enough for you?)
3. "Thirty-three messages from J-Date!" (I have no reason to believe she is Jewish or lonely, I just like the specificity of the reference. Smile to yourself if you did, too.)
4. "Someone is following me on Twitter!" (She will be crushed when she finds out @frontierjusticerobot3000 is her mom.)
5. "Express is lowering the waistline of their Editor pant!" (It bothers me that I know what this means.)
"Enjoy shopping at our many, nameless shops with their logo-free bags, and bring the children you obviously kidnapped from people of other ethnicities!"
Look at that little girl in his arms and tell me she isn't looking for an escape route. She is mentally texting an Amber Alert even as the United Colors of Benetton continue their unmotivated laughing spree. She desperately needs to get away, as she has to get the shard to the Crystal before the Great Conjunction, otherwise the Skeksis will rule forever. (Bonus points to anyone who actually gets that little gem from my childhood.)
"Come experience the romance that only our restaurants and Jason Schwartzman in a wig can provide."
Come for the hair, stay for the Beatles boots.
"The new fitness center inspires me to work out...but, obviously, not enough. I'm so lonely."
Look at the forced smile, the layered workout gear, the prominent use of black clothing with a contained white silhouette to provide an illusory waifishness. This is a woman who is not happy with herself, and now she is not happy with herself for all eternity in a public arena where she must speak for women like her everywhere. Godspeed, stationary bike woman. Godspeed.
Check back soon for more of these. Believe it or not, they get much, MUCH more bizarre.