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Truth Is A Pathless Land by Lane R. Ellis

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Truth Is A Pathless Land


Zooming In On Duluth With Google Maps Street View Expansion

Earlier this year Mountain View, California-based Google added detailed digitized imagery of one small portion of Duluth, Minnesota -- the city where I live -- to its ongoing Google Maps Street View project, the Internet search giant's ambitious attempt to improve on traditional overhead satellite views by using special cameras mounted on the roof of cars. The result is a slice-in-time effect captured on film as Google employees in the specially equipped cars navigate streets worldwide, bringing Web visitors the most detailed images yet of buildings, traffic, people going about their daily business, and maybe even your house and car.

Old Central High School Building in Duluth, Minnesota

When Google made its initial Street View run through Duluth only a scant number of scenes from along the city's main thoroughfare, Superior Street, and a handful of other roads, were visited by the scanning car. While this provided curious Duluth residents a digital glimpse into their city on the shore of Lake Superior, the limited coverage left out most of the city and allowed only a very few people to see their homes and favorite local attractions in high resolution zoom-able Street View resolution. All that has now changed.

As of November 2009 Google has vastly expanded its Street View coverage of Duluth and the areas surrounding the city, as you can see by the image shown above featuring Duluth's Old Central High School building.

Since the Street View program began several years ago some citizens, businesses, cities and governments have taken legal action against Google on privacy grounds, and for its part the Web titan has made it easier to request that individual homes or other areas be blurred out.

When I first learned of Google's Street View update for Duluth I searched for my own home, and was able to clearly see my family's pet cat Marley sitting in a window and men working on a neighbor's house. After a bit more time exploring the new Google imagery I spotted my car parked in its usual spot during the work week, and captured a number of other Duluth area Street View scenes I present here. Marley the cat can be seen in the upper leftmost window in the image below.

Marley The Cat

The mapping of Duluth is not yet complete, and is likely to be continuing at present. While Google did not release any specific dates on which the new Street View images were photographed, clues from some Duluth scenes point to an ongoing project, such as an image of Duluth's recently-completed Skywalk walkway system through the downtown area as it was nearing completion, as shown below.

Duluth's New Skywalk Extension Being Built

Recent Duluth dining additions inside the downtown Technology Center building, Kippis Tappas Bar and Takk for Maten Cafe, are also visible in the new Street View update as you can see in the image below or at the live Google Maps link.

Kippis Tappas Bar and Takk for Maten Cafe

One of Duluth's numerous historic parks, Chester Bowl, home of a small downhill ski area, a cross-country ski trail, and several massive ski jumps built early in the twentieth century when the city produced several Olympic jumpers, is among the new area covered by Google Maps Street View, as shown below. The largest of the ski jumps can be seen in the upper left of the image.

Chester Bowl in Duluth, Minnesota

Far from the green hills of Duluth's parks are other more mundane buildings, parking lots, and businesses, such as the Kozy Bar in the downtown area, as shown below, complete with a somewhat bewildered man standing on the sidewalk nearby.

Duluth Kozy Bar

For those who may have secretly dreamt of traveling stealthily and risk-free through both the safe and the not-so-safe areas of a city in order to observe daily life, Street View provides a great voyeuristic solution. An image of a man in downtown Duluth dodging traffic on the busy main street was included in the new Google update, as you can see below.

Man Dodging Traffic In Downtown Duluth

 Duluth's public library and Saint Louis County Heritage and Arts Center's Historic Union Depot buildings can be seen in the follow image, along with the city's aerial lift bridge in the upper left. Duluth Library, Depot and Aerial Lift Bridge

Two additional Duluth images from Google's Street View update are shown below, the first featuring a number of people going about their business as a police car passes by, and the second showing Duluth's Ragstock clothing store.

Downtown Duluth, Minnesota

Duluth Ragstock Clothing Store

Countless other scenes from daily life throughout Duluth and its surrounding area are bound to be found among the new Google Maps Street View imagery. If you live in Duluth, have lived there in the past, or know somebody who lives there, you're likely to enjoy exploring this new information.


Pete Seeger Joins Donovan Playing "Colours" On Pete's "Rainbow Quest" Television Show

In 1966 Donovan appeared as a guest on Pete Seeger's wonderful television program "Rainbow Quest", and the two played a pure and beautiful version of Donovan's song "Colours" together, as shown in the video clip below. I heard Donovan sing a rousing version of the song live in the early 1980s at a concert he played in Denver, Colorado at the now demolished Rainbow Music Hall. During his appearance on "Rainbow Quest" Donovan mentions Derroll Adams, who was his friend and much older musical mentor.

 During the same "Rainbow Quest" performance Donovan and fellow musician Shawn Phillips showed Pete Seeger and another guest on the program, the Reverend Gary David, how the sitar works, and as shown in the video excerpt below the two demonstrate the then-exotic Indian instrument in a melancholy version of Donovan's "Guinevere."

 In Donovan's autobiography, "The Autobiography of Donovan: The Hurdy Gurdy Man,"1 a book I read a few years back, Donovan writes of "Colours":

"'Colours' was a little number with me on acoustic guitar and a double bass. I had bought a fine White Lady banjo on Cambridge Circus and accompanied myself in the style of Derroll Adams. The harmonica was there again, though this time I sucked blues-style in contrast to the Guthrie 'blow method.'"

What a treat it is to be able to see some of Donovan's early performances on Pete Seeger's unique show.

 1Donovan. (2005). The autobiography of Donovan: The hurdy gurdy man. New York: St. Martin's Press.


Devo Joined By Its Benefactor Neil Young In A Wild Rendition Of Young's "Hey Hey, My My (Into The Black)"

Neil Young helped Devo both financially and at times, as this video clip shows, musically. The Neil Young biography, Shakey by Jimmy McDonough, which I read several years ago, noted that Young came up with what eventually became "Hey Hey, My My (Into The Black)" while he was playing informally for fun with Devo. This video clip is from a collaborative movie Neil and Devo worked on together that was never released.

Google's YouTube removed this video, however it can be viewed using the following MySpace feed as of September 9, 2009:

Neil Young & Devo



Folk Singer Malvina Reynolds Sings Harry Belafonte's 1959 "Turn Around"

A simple and beautiful version of "Turn Around" performed by Malvina Reynolds on Pete Seeger's brilliant folk music television show, "Rainbow Quest." I've been a fan of Reynolds since first hearing her sing her most famous song, "Little Boxes" many years ago.

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Exegesis & History

Truth is a pathless land. Man cannot come to it through any organization, through any creed, through any dogma, priest or ritual, not through any philosophical knowledge or psychological technique. He has to find it through the mirror of relationship, through the understanding of the contents of his own mind, through observation and not through intellectual analysis or introspective dissection.

- Jiddu Krishnamurti (
A Nobel Peace Prize For Pete Seeger

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