In the gone but not forgotten category: One familiar landmark on Highway 17 is gone and another has been partially demolished.
Remember the days when Livingston Antiques and Roumillat’s felt like the end of the earth as one headed south on Highway 17? There was the feeling of nothing south of those two landmarks except open space and countryside. Well, Livingston’s, which opened in 1969, has been closed now for several months, and I only just realized it a few days ago.
And the famous produce shed on the northwest corner of 17 and Wappoo Road, which has been around as long as I remember, is endangered. In fact a 1960s addition already has met the wrecking ball. Demolition of the main 1939s shed, known as Dupont Station and built by the Seaboard Airline railroad, has been halted.
That’s thanks to the Historic Charleston Foundation, which will get a hearing early next month before the county’s Board of Zoning Appeals. Fortunately, the wrecking ball got deserved attention. The vegetable shed was a regional hubbub of activity back when produce marketing was a different operation. It could well have another use.
I enjoyed the recent business story about local young entrepreneurs — specifically about Andrew Tew and his Flooded Streets line of T-shirts, which reference iconic Charleston themes, buildings and logos.
I’ve got one that pays homage to the old Woolworth’s luncheonette at 259 King St. Even though each T-shirt is made in limited quantity to retain a feeling of rarefied access, I tend to interrupt the concept by wearing it all the time. Now everybody thinks you can get the same T-shirt at Wal-Mart. Sorry, Andrew. I’ll at least take time out and wash it.
Anyway, my wife wrote to congratulate Andrew on the story. He wrote back and said, “One of my oldest friends, Caroline Hay, launched her own bikini line, Citrine Swim, about five months ago. A Charleston native and Ashley Hall/Clemson grad, she moved to Hawaii after college. There she opened her own jewelry line and came up with the idea for Citrine. She travels to Bali to meet designers and manufacturers and sells online and also in her fiancé’s recently opened store, Drift (located on Coleman on the way out to Sullivan’s Island.)
“She really inspired me with Flooded Streets and the back story to her company is fascinating.”
I haven’t spoken to either about this, but Dr. Edward Morrison’s son, Will, has started a company specifically designed to take care of the inebriated — or at least the inebriated who are in no condition to drive.
The business is called CoPilot Designated Drivers, a service to get drivers and their vehicles home responsibly. Or at least that’s the word from a Citadel alumni publication and the Internet. A CoPilot driver will arrive on the scene with a portable motorbike that is then folded and stored in the customer’s car.
After the driver transports the customer and the vehicle home, he removes the motorbike and goes to the next destination.
What a great idea! I think the name needs work, though. Maybe “You Bum, We Ride” or “Stews’ Shuttle?”
Going through some more of the mail and on the subject of the “Black” American Express card, a lady whom I’ll identify only as Sarah writes and says, “Both my husband and I have black American Express cards. You can have one too simply by opening a Morgan Stanley brokerage account and maintaining a certain balance — definitely less than $16.3 million, with no monthly spending requirement.”
Eugene Batten writes, “Thanks for your story on Rich Vulgarity. It warms my heart to read your detailed settings and behavior observations. ... I will never again floss my teeth among strangers at public restaurants but I will parade my daughters around every chance I get to use my black American Express card. How else will I get them married off!?”
And finally, my assistant columnist at large, Walter Duane, has the following observations: “At least the people you wrote about in your column were concerned about their physical appearance, if not manners.
“When I go out to dine (seldom), I have on a suit with appropriate shirt and tie. Sometimes I am the only one so attired, Most of the men have on shorts with their shirttails hanging out.
“I live in a college area and I see how the students now dress. I am old enough to remember how the girls at “The College” would sit at the Cistern all dressed up. Whatever happened to Betty Coed?
“As for men, does the apparel no longer reveal the man? Can’t blame it all on Yankee charm. Locals are just as bad. Fitzgerald called the twenties ‘the Jazz Age.’ I call this the vulgar or sloppy age. Words that a drill instructor at Parris Island wouldn’t use can now be found routinely in The New Yorker and Atlantic Monthly.
“Are good manners forever out of style? Hope not.”
Edward M. Gilbreth is a Charleston physician. Reach him at edwardgilbreth@ comcast.net.