Assiduity

The word appears on Albany’s crest.  What a handsome crest!  I needed to look up assiduity–constant or close attention to what one is doing.  I will be reminded each time I pass this sewer cover.  asc

I’ve been meaning to capture the following video, the wonderful sound principally, for months.

I pass the box every other day and marvel at the mechanical sounds issuing forth.  Twenty four seven, as they say, for, according to a friend, about thirty years.  He remembers ripping through the intersection as a young man before the signal was in place (placed at the highest spot in Albany).  How proud I’d be to have designed or made such a box.  Wonderful that it is still there.  I am sure it uses more electricity than a current switch on a board, but sometimes the best solution is to leave a thing in place to do its job.

Happy Friday, friends.

 

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4 responses to “Assiduity

  1. I love listening to those switches. Sometimes as I walk by, I’ll stop to listen through a few cycles.

    Crouse Hinds is a Syracuse company that once specialized in traffic signals — apparently it stopped making them in the early 80s.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crouse-Hinds_Company

    There’s a building on the Syracuse University campus named after its founder: Huntington Beard Crouse (yes, the man had three names and all of them were last names) — or as it’s almost always called, HBC.

  2. Crouse Hinds was for a long time one of the major employers in Syracuse, on the north side, and they were indeed very proud of what they made there. They held some of the earliest patents on coordinated traffic control devices (such as this one: http://www.freepatentsonline.com/2091954.html ).

    I fondly remember a mechanical signal switch in my home town that was susceptible to outside influences, such as teenage boys knocking on it in order to get it to change so they could cross the avenue.

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