Saturday, March 15, 2008

Moolah, Part 2 (With Saturday Evening Supplement)

Saturday evening update: I went down to our big St. Patrick's Day parade downtown today. Got tons of good shots, which will keep me busy for a while. But, lo and behold, I ran across one of them Moolah Shriners I've been talking about yesterday and today. They entertain at public events, often dressed as clowns. I don't think the tint of his nose had anything to do with Jamieson's. Come back tomorrow for more parade fun.

Here's what I had on my mind at the start of the day:

This is the facade of the Moolah Temple, now a cinema, over the main entrance. The word Moolah is odd in itself. It is old American slang for money. The Urban Dictionary says that the word also refers to a cow's teats.

The style and iconography is all mixed up but kind of fun. The brick and tile circle in the bottom center resembles a rosette window in a European cathedral. The geometric designs to its sides are typical of beautiful Muslim tilework in buildings such as the Alhambra in Granada, Spain, although this is much less complex and the use of brick detracts from the luster. The device between the words is wacky. It's got a crescent moon, which is a symbol of Islam (but also New Orleans, the Crescent City). It has a scimitar, a sword from throughout Middle East and South Asia, and a very European man's face in an ancient Egyptian headdress. I supposed it all looked generally exotic to the members.

TOMORROW: Shamrocks and combat boots.

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