Monday, August 20, 2012

Blast From the Past

While I was away in Thunder Bay in July I saw this vintage cycle locked up outside the Hoito:

The Hoito is a Finnish breakfast place / diner that must be experienced if you go to Thunder Bay.

It is located underneath the Finlandia Club. Try the Finnish pancakes. Newsflash: There are lots of people of Finnish ancestry in Thunder Bay.

Also be sure to purchase and eat a "Persian", a local delicacy that is only found in Thunder Bay, believe it or not. They aren't much more interesting than a doughnut to local people, who know not the extraordinary way in which they have been blessed, but when the Rantwick clan visits Thunder Bay we celebrate them with great vigour.

They are freakin' delicious. The best Persians can be purchased, not surprisingly, from "The Persian Man", which has at least two locations in town, maybe more.

The wikipedia article claims that there are "persians" available in Wisconsin as well, but they feature white icing sometimes with nuts or coconut. That is utter nonsense. Everybody knows persians have a strangely hard to describe pink strawberry-raspberry flavoured icing. White icing. Pffft. Whatever, Wisconsin...

Where was I? Oh yes, the bike. Check out the licence plate!

I remember those from when I was a kid; everyone was supposed to license their bicycle in the City of Thunder Bay. I checked their web site and found no reference to any such practice these days.

It was kind of nice to see how seriously bikes were treated at one time. Almost like, um, vehicles!

Yer Pal,


cafiend said...

I lived in towns that required bicycle registration at various times in my childhood. It didn't bother me much then, but the idea of glomming stickers on my bikes year after year or having to sport a plate on each and every one of them doesn't appeal to me now. I'm open to the idea of some sort of surcharge on bikes and equipment to go to a dedicated fund for infrastructure, education and enforcement of cyclists' rights to transport themselves freely but not to anything that would require the annual defacement of my machines. Not unless I saw one hell of a lot of really great infrastructure and officially sanctioned respect.

Anonymous said...

The history of the Finlandia Club building along with the social history of the community that built and used it is presented in Under the Red Star, a film by Kelly Saxberg (Sheba Films, 2011). A wonderful film about the working-class Finnish-Canadian community of Thunder Bay.

GreenComotion said...

I remember my dad's bike had a license. In fact, I think he last renewed it sometime before I was ten.

A few Persians sound good right about now!

Peace :)

RANTWICK said...

cafiend - yeah, as much as I find it neat, I'm not sure I would want that kind of hassle either.

anon - thanks for that... little nuggets like that are what make web surfing interesting

chandra - persians. mmmmm.

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