This is a post about manhole covers and Bob Dylan

Duluth continues to expand its homage to its native son Bob Dylan with new manhole covers on Dylan Way. The heavy metal discs celebrate Dylan by way of his song “Subterranean Homesick Blues,” featuring some kind of fancy image of sandals and candles. The vandals and handles will be forthcoming, I’m sure.

You might know that I work with Dylan Days in Hibbing, the Iron Range town where Dylan grew up after his family left Duluth. Hibbing has renamed a major street “Dylan Drive,” but we do not have specialty manhole covers.

That’s probably for the best. The minute this old town’s public utilities commission got the inkling, the bulbous busts of any number of local officials might appear across the streetscape. It would end in scandal, but the tainted manhole covers would outlive the scandal. Decades would pass, then centuries. Future residents of Sky Slim Jim Hibbing would descend with their jetpacks to the pockmarked land below, see the manhole covers, and assume that the names and visages depicted were really important, like the Dylan manhole covers over in Sky Google Duluth were important, and what then? What then? Think of the children’s children.


  1. “Look out kid
    They keep it all hid
    Better jump down a manhole
    Light yourself a candle
    Don’t wear sandals
    Try to avoid the scandals
    Don’t wanna be a bum
    You better chew gum
    The pump don’t work
    ’Cause the vandals took the handles”

    Great song, but I’d want more than a manhole cover for it..just saying..

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