Monday, July 5, 2010

Brian goes to Los Angeles


I'm afraid that I have some unfortunate news for my Philadelphia area readers. Looking back now, my first post of 2010 was somewhat portentous, since my imminent plans to pursue graduate studies in linguistics are leading me to Los Angeles, California. Among other things, it means that the Philadelphia Then and Now posts are coming to an end for the foreseeable future.

When I first created this blog back in 2008, my original intention was to create more of a personal blog with a broader scope of subject matter, which explains the very silly blog name that's now quite out of character with what I've actually written. I suspect that it has to some degree prevented all this from being taken particularly seriously. Anyhow, although I'd been toying with the idea of then and now montages from the beginning, I never imagined that BGTT (thanks for the acronym, Brownstoner!) would become almost exclusively devoted to them. For better or for worse, it's a rather strange yet rewarding addiction.

A great sense of loss accompanies many of the then and now posts that I've done, and I can't see how it could possibly be otherwise. I hope it underscores the urgent need to rediscover, preserve, and protect the many beautiful places that continue to enrich the lives of Philadelphians today. Admittedly, I've only delved into an absolutely minuscule fraction of the region's geographic area and history. I'm reluctantly putting aside a long backlog of Philadelphia places that I never got around to posting about, mostly west of 40th Street, north of Spring Garden, and south of South Street.

I would never have set about blogging were it not for the inspiration I've received from Philadelphia's wonderful blogosphere, and the many great bloggers who have cared so much for this great city's past, present, and future: the beloved and dearly missed Philly Skyline, The Necessity for Ruins, The Illadelph, and the wonderful newcomer Brownstoner, to name just a few. Furthermore, the vast majority of this site would not have been possible without the many repositories of historical images that have graciously made their collections available online, such as the Lower Merion Historical Society, Built in America/HABS, and above all, the amazing PhillyHistory.org. Lastly, I must extend a heartfelt thanks to Professor Jeffrey A. Cohen, who has more than anyone else fostered my fascination with the Philadelphia region's architectural and urban history.

So what happens now? I imagine that I will find the time to continue to write and take photographs in Los Angeles, but probably not for some time after I've settled in. It took me at least two years of living in the Philadelphia area before I could consider myself relatively knowledgeable enough about the region's history to blog about it. I don't think I could properly put into words what an enormous pleasure it has been to live in Philadelphia, and how sad I am to be leaving, so you'll have to take my word for it. So for my readers from the area, thank you so much for supporting the blog, and I do hope you decide to stick around. I'm already looking forward to my next visit.

7 comments:

Gabby said...

You will be very missed. This makes me sad. Good luck in L.A., though.

Devan said...

Definitely tragic, to be sure. But if you ever want a architecture-themed tour in LA, look no further!

Art said...

I've very much enjoyed your blog and I will certainly miss it as I am also fascinated by what used to be there.

Good luck in LA.

- Art
Foobooz.com

Ratchet said...

Wow, you will be missed! I have loved your postings and the detailed research you've done on each. Thank you and best of luck!

Josef said...

I'm really going to miss these posts, but hey, good luck in grad school! I'm a linguistics grad student myself.

Anonymous said...

I'm crestfallen. What are the chances you'll find someone to get through that backlog of fascinating images you describe?

Good luck in L.A.,and thanks for putting together such a valuable collection of images!

Anonymous said...

Nooooooooooooooooooooooo!