My parents, who live about 1/2 hours drive North of the Old Man of the Mountain in New Hampshire, called me up in frantic saddened excitement the other day, "the Old Man has fallen!" they said. That's quite the event as the head is part of the State Seal and plastered over everything that you possibly can think of in NH including its state coin. But still I was non-plussed.
I went to high-school and college in New Hampshire but I doubt I will ever, ever consider myself a New Hampshirite. My politics skew about 180 degrees off the general populace's scary libertarian-slash-republican base, and the weather (especially in the north where I lived) is cold, rainy, snowy, muddy and grey for 7/8ths of the year and hot and muggy for a week in August. As soon as I could I got out of there...
But even as a kid I couldn't figure out why everyone made such a big deal about the Old Man. From the base of the valley it's REALLY tiny (as you can see in the pic above of Ana in front of it back in 2000). And it's only visible from a particular angle... I can find images of faces in just about anthing... especially rocks. Down the road from the Old Man is the Indian Head resort which has a big tower where you can see great views of rocks that look like a classic American Indian profile. I mean it's not uncommon. Out in Sedona, Arizona you can find mountains that look like Snoopy. Big whoop. Why New Hampshire chose to plaster the face over everything (the white guy's face, not the indian guy's) I have no idea.
Anyways, it doesn't look like the fact that it has fallen is going to change the logo much according to this Boston Globe article, they may even re-constuct it. I've always thought "The Granite State" was a bit out of touch with reality, but this would clinch it. What does a reconstructed face that was once on top of a mountain represent? How about NH's desperate clinging to the past? I hope they get a clue and choose a tree or something instead.