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What a great idea …. she said … go back to the scene of the crime.

Well, to the scene of the pictures from a few weeks ago. And do an update of the blog entry I did back then.

I still had the original picture. That’s it over here to the left.

The plan … and we all know how well my plans work … was to go to State College … to Beaver Stadium … the Home of the Nittany Lions … you know … the “you can’t be in a post-season game for five years because your coach did something stupid years ago” Nittany Lions?

And I was going to have my picture taken … again … only this time with no statue of JoePa.

Since they had taken the statue away … early last Sunday morning.

Seemed simple enough.

Just picture me in the bleak scene here to the right … great idea, right?

So I got dressed in the identical outfit I had worn for the first picture. I had visions of a well-worded blog entry … a few witty observations … complete with side by side pictures.  Easy. Great idea.  I was ready.

Until I got to Beaver Stadium.

Now I knew I was in the right place. Because the last time I was there, I had gone to the Visitors Center across the street in search of directions to a nice scoop of Peachy Paterno from the Creamery there on the campus.

The Stadium was still there. The Visitors Center was still there.

No Joe.

But not only no Joe … no trace of Joe … no indication that Joe had ever set foot at the Stadium, let alone had been immortalized in a bronze statue. Maybe I had it wrong.

So I turned around my car and drove … more slowly this time … past the area where, just days before, there had been a pull-off area, a cement patio area, a wall, a relief of several players and a large bronze statue. Well, maybe not the statue … but all the rest, for sure.

Nothing.

Not even an indication of where the pull-off used to be.

At this point a man in a Golf Cart … appearing to be giving two other men a tour of the Stadium area … came down the sidewalk.  I hastily put down my window and asked “What happened to the area where the statue was? I swear I got my picture taken here several days ago … somewhere around here.”

He laughed and pointed at the decidedly non-tribute-bearing area. “Right over there where those three trees are now. That’s exactly where it USED to be. But not any more.”

You’re not kidding.

I snapped a quick picture of myself in shock, stunned at the change in the area where the statue and all the rest used to be. And needless to say, there was nobody there to take the picture of me.

Walking across the road to where I had haphazardly parked my car, I was shaking my head … as a nice man pulled up in his truck. “Amazing, isn’t it?” he asked.

“Well I’m stunned” I said. “What happened to the area, the cement, the pull-off. All of it?”

“Well,” he began, “before they made the area into a place for the statue and all of it, it was a hill … just like it is now. They have restored the area to exactly the way it was before they decided to put the statue there.”

Had I mentioned that they put in a hill? And a new sidewalk? And no Pull-Off? And completely grown healthy green grass (courtesy of some turf from somewhere)? And three fully grown trees?

In a matter of hours?

Well, the trees aren’t quite as large as the ones down the road … and have the kinds of stakes that new trees often do … but still …

Being immortalized isn’t nearly as immortal as it used to be.

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