In Plain Sight: Metro Self-Storage
I've never been entirely able to get a handle on Buffalo. In large part it seems about what you'd expect: busted-ass and depressing as hell. But here and there amongst the ruins lie relics that whisper of what could only have been a glorious past, and one frequently stumbles upon things so at odds with their current surroundings that their presence defies all explanation.
Metro Self-Storage is on Main Street, about a mile past the Anchor Bar, where the city's eponymous wings preparation was famously supposed to have been invented. It is, to be blunt about it, not the best part of town. Not the worst, either, not by any means, but just your typical, somewhat blighted, urban post-industrial industrial strip. Lots of decaying signage, chain link, and buildings doing duty for purposes other than which they were intended. Looks like this.
The first thing that catches your eye driving past is the back half of a 1982 Buick Skyhawk, arguably the handsomest of the J-cars (admittedly, that's not unlike calling ________ the noblest of the sexually-transmitted diseases), suspended over the entry. But then in your peripheral vision you might catch a glimpse of what sits just the other side of the glass storefront: flashes of chrome grilles, gills, exhaust, and—WTF, was that a Cord?
It was. And next to it, on one side, a Rolls of 1950s vintage, and on the other, a '40s straight-eight Buick with original-issue plates.
Across the room towards the back, an ex-Little Al stocker and three—and perhaps four—curious Etceterini of indeterminate origin.
Working our way down further, what appears to be a late '70s or perhaps '80s Indy car under a tarp, a pagoda-roof 250SL, a couple newer, covered Ferraris, a C5 Corvette, and oh, hey, a Maserati 3500 GT, and a Merak behind it for good measure.
Mind you, with the exception of the few that are covered with dust cloths, no effort is being made whatsoever to conceal these automobiles. They're sitting right there behind full-length windows—as if in a showroom!—on a cruddy main drag in Buffalo. No sign of the rest of that Skyhawk, however.
Click on the pics for full-size