May 6, 2012 was one of the best days ever for me at Rice. I got out of my car in West Lot 1 and saw this:
Dazzling, hilarious, completely unexpected and baffling all at the same time. I still smile every time I think of it. God bless America.
Bonus: Another weird one.
I remember that well (well, not the egg.)
It’s hard to forget giant inflatable gorillas in places where one wouldn’t ordinarily come across them.
The balloons were put on the Fox Gym roof to keep the Reckling Park stadium lights from interfering with the lights a the Turrell Skyspace during its opening. I guess they ran out of regular balloons, so they brought in the Gorilla. A sight to see indeed!
What did they do about those lights after the skyspace opening? Did they find a more permanent solution? (I probably should know the answer.)
Reckling lights were slightly adjusted. The playing field light poles across Lab Road were shortened. Some of the sidewalk lights were covered with trash cans, temporarily, and later partially shrouded. And, over time, it just got more relaxed. All the fuss was because the Skyspace was just about to open.
At the time, the gorilla was the only thing available! (I logged a lot of miles chasing down balloons that week.) We still talk about that gorilla and the reactions to it.
Melissa, you would probably like to know that my wife saw this and laughed about as hard as I’ve ever seen her laugh. I thought she was going to cry or something. I must have told her about it at the time but didn’t mention the gorilla.
When I first saw it I laughed until I was nearly sick. I didn’t yet know why it was there but I knew the explanation was going to be priceless.