Monday, August 22, 2011


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The Sunday after my return from NY and Brice's return from Germany found us in Philly. We'd intended to go a couple of weeks before but it didn't work out. So we happened to have a chance to go on the first Sunday of the month, which is "pay what you wish" day at the art museum. The steps in front of the art museum are the "Rocky steps". There is a Rocky statue in front where we never saw fewer than ten people taking pictures and there is always at least one person running up the steps, then turning with their arms up, Rocky-style. Yes, we are a pop-culture culture.

We explored the museum and then set out for Reading Terminal Market, the spot I'd planned for lunch. We were about five blocks on our way when we decided that the humidity was too much. We turned back for the Franklin Institute, our next planned visit, and indulged ourselves with one of those over-priced museum cafeteria lunches. The Franklin Institute was impressive and I recommend it if you have kids, or you enjoy pretending you are one. We hit most of the exhibits and saw a planetarium show and the visiting exhibit, Mummies.

I was a little disappointed with Mummies. They were talking it up with questions like, what can we learn about them? What can they tell us about history? How can they help us today? But after seeing the exhibit, I didn't really get many answers to those questions and didn't see much of a reason to study them other than pure curiosity (which I possess as well, so not a slight). Also, many of the mummies had info plaques that basically said, We don't know hardly anything about this mummy--it's under study. I kept thinking, well maybe you should have held off on the exhibit for a few years then. Another thing that stuck me was that there seemed to be concern for modesty with the Caucasian mummies (drapes across their middles or full costumes), while mummies from other races were just exposed. I left a comment asking about this.

If the exhibit comes to your town and you see it, let me know what you think.

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