“If I’m feelin’ tomorrow like I feel today…”

“…I’ll pack up my truck and make my get-away.”

Pedaling on a Sunday morning through that woozy boundary line of The Patch and Carondelet neighborhoods, when the sight above made me hit the brakes. It was the embodiment of an old river city, the poetry of mud and W.C. Handy blues.  The metal chair is now all 5 layers of colors, all decades at once; the past is the present and if you think it won’t see much future, they been sayin’ that since I Like Ike.

The CSB has reams of complaints on this ram-shack-le, plenty claim “Derelicts on Private Property.” In the Great Depression he’d have been out-of-working class – how dare the neighbors cast judgment! …Oh, they were vehicular in nature! Not gonna make a Sanford & Son crack, even though Redd Foxx is a St. Louis native.  Just a couple of Canon shots, hopin’ there’s no slingshot through the metal blinds aiming at my head, and slowly pedal away.

The Coca-Cola Syrup Plant

Michigan & Davis intersection, Carondelet Neighborhood
South St. Louis, MO
They applied for a National Register listing for this industrial complex, and it was added to the list in April 2008. Two months later, plans were announced to convert the former Coca-Cola syrup plant into 78 apartments and commercial space. Bravo!

As arresting and evocative as the 1920’s portion of the plant is, I also love the down-scale, no-nonsense metal sheeting updates on the north side of the complex. This portion appears to belong to International Foods’ Dairy House, so naturally, it still requires high fructose and oil receiving receptacles. Note the “rust” stains down the left side of the left-hand depository, and think about what that stuff does to your innards.

If this portion of the complex is indeed part of the renovation plans, I look forward to seeing what’s under all the metal, though I will miss its minimalist cubism glory as reflected on a perfect summer morning.