Day 26: Bad Habits: Drinks, Drags, and Drugs in Washtenaw County History, an ongoing exhibit at the Washtenaw County Historical Society
Looking for events at the beginning of February I realized that there were not a lot of events that I wanted to attend at the end of the month. With this in mind I saved a lot of the ongoing exhibits that sounded cool for, well, now.
My friend Maggie called me this morning at the crack of 11am to have a little girl’s day downtown. We got a late start.
We began the afternoon with brunch at the Jolly Pumpkin. I had never been there before, it was good.
I especially liked that my eggs came with a little salad of mixed greens. Yum. It was delicious. Maggie and I chatted about vampire movies and drank diet Coke.
After breakfast we walked down to the Museum on Main Street. I had never been there before either. The docent/hippie/Sierra Club member gave us a brief history of the house and the museum, then set us loose on the first floor where the exhibit was. It consisted of three main rooms, each with a different theme.
The first room was on Prohibition. This was, I think, the most interesting part. They had a lot of information displayed on these nicely designed placards that had history and pictures. It was neat to learn about the specifics of how Prohibition affected people locally. Prohibition advocates in Ann Arbor used the problem of annoying drunk students to get locals onboard. That makes sense. They even had some old drinking songs. Maggie and I tried to sing them, but we were largely unsuccessful. It’s hard to sing a song in a round when you don’t know the tune. (Maggie and I are famous for our rounds.)
It’s probably the historian in me but I really enjoyed that room! They also had some old timey wine making equipment which made me think of my friend Patrick.
The middle room was on pharmaceuticals. As much as I like drugs I thought this room was pretty boring. They did have this cool cabinet full of old tonic bottles.
The final room was on illegal drugs. Most of it seemed to be about John Sinclair, who I think is a sexist douche monkey. Or, the D.A.R.E. program. This was also where I got into a conversation with the museum’s one other patron (you’re welcome, Natalie). He informed me that he was a recovering crack addict and asked me how long I had been off drugs. He told me he hadn’t smoked crack in 35 months. I think only ex-addicts and new parents tell time in weeks and months like that. It’s weird. Why didn’t he just say, “almost three years?”
Anyway, we picked up some anti-drug pamphlets, including one called, Ecstasy: What’s there to RAVE about?. We also grabbed a few D.A.R.E. bumper stickers and then left.
On the way back to the car we stopped at a store called Bongz and Thongz. I’d never been in there but I had always wanted to because it’s in the old Liberty St. Video space.
While the whole store reeked of incense and hippies (gross) the proprietor was very nice, and seemed sober.
We ended the afternoon at Washtenaw Dairy, where Maggie ate an ice cream cone the size of her head. I think it was a successful day.
Tomorrow I’m going to an exhibit on Eugenics at the U of M science library at 5pm.