Aug 22, 2009 04:45 pm
by Scott Schrantz
Imagine you’re tooling around the bottom of Elliot Bay in your private submarine, and you’ve got a hankering for some piping hot clam chowder. But where to go to get some? All of a sudden, out of the murk and surrounded by swimming sharks, you see a large sign for Ivar’s Acres of Clams, and their 75¢ bowl of chowder. Excellent! You change your heading for Pier 54 and start digging your pockets for change.
This apparently was a scene envisioned by Ivar Haglund as happening in the not-too-distant future, and so in his unremitting genius he actually set billboards for his seafood restaurant on the bottom of the bay. Ivar died in 1985, but in his papers he left a map showing where the beacons were located, and Paul Dorpat in his research came across this fantastically whimsical find. It seemed just crazy enough to be true, and so a dive team was sent down to the bottom to scout out one of the locations on the map. And what do you know, they actually found one!
This is like something out of a quirky movie, billboards at the bottom of the sea advertising restaurants to passing aquanauts. But then again, Ivar himself, from what I’ve heard of him, was like a character out of a quirky movie, a living cartoon who promoted himself and his businesses in every weird way he could think of. I’m not at all surprised that he had this idea, or that he actually went through with it. And it’s great that it’s been uncovered after all these years, one more little surprise nugget he left behind to delight future generations.
Hat tip to West Seattle Blog for this one.