The Fantabulous 50s Weekend, Part 4: COSI All Around

COSI sign!

Obligatory Marvel cameo helps us segue from the first three chapters to the rest of our mostly non-Marvel weekend.

Previously on Midlife Crisis Crossover:

In addition to our annual road trips, my wife Anne and I have a twice-yearly tradition of spending our respective birthdays together traveling to some new place or attraction as a short-term road trip — partly as an excuse to spend time together on those most wondrous days, partly to explore areas we’ve never experienced before. We’re the Goldens. It’s who we are and what we do.

I’ve just now lived to see 50, and after weeks of research and indecision, we planned an overnight journey to the next state over, to the capital city of Columbus, Ohio, which had cool stuff that this now-fiftysomething geek wanted to see. Columbus, then, would be the setting for our first outing together as quintagenarians…

The Marvel exhibit alone was worth the three-hour drive, but the Center of Science and Industry had more to it than that. Perhaps the average 50-year-old wouldn’t kick off their big birthday celebration at one of those large, fancy kids’ museums that are entertaining staples in many a big city, but that’s where our choices took us. As a compromise to seem slightly less weird, we did not visit all their exhibits, but we encountered enough extras to compile a bonus COSI gallery. Museums: they’re not just for kids anymore!

As it happens, I-70 from Indy to Columbus was such a smooth drive that morning, even with multiple construction impediments, that we arrived a half-hour before they opened. We passed that time walking a lap around their campus, which includes a stretch of Columbus’ Downtown River Walk along the banks of the Scioto.

Scioto River!

One of our few shots of the Scioto River with actual river water in it. Somehow we just kept missing it.

downtown Columbus!

Downtown Columbus looms across the river.

Do Not Feed Geese!

Some city dwellers need practical advice.

stage setup!

Outside the COSI”s east wing, a stage setup was in progress as part of a Saturday night craft beer festival. The crew was gracious enough not to chase us away.

sitting deer!

They also worked around a deer statue, just sitting around and totally not creeping me out or anything.

sexy deer in repose!

Sexy deer in repose, on the other hand, was the creepiest sight by far.

Science Spectrum!

Over on the west end of campus stands a 1991 kinetic sculpture called Science Spectrum by William Wainwright.


Once inside the doors, your first sight is a pendulum, keeping time with precision. We have one like it at the Indiana State Museum, and we saw one at another Ohio museum four years ago.

Clavichordium Blatta!

Several walls were decorated with large butterflies made from recycled materials and objects. such as Clavichordium Blatta here…

Nocturnal Indigo Gum Snout!

…and Nocturnal Indigo Gum Snout. I just really wanted to type that.

old-timey town at night!

Like Indy’s Children’s Museum, the COSI has a “everyday life in old-time towns” exhibit. Theirs has cooler nighttime lighting.

black VW Beetle!

Nostalgia prompts along that Main Street simulation include a black VW Beetle, which should come in handy for anyone playing “Slug Bug” while scrolling through this.

Honda NSX!

Over in the “Great Moments in Automotive Engineering, Sponsored by Local Automotive Concerns” section, advancements include this sweet Honda NSX designed with special hands-only controls, for drivers who can’t do pedals.

Oceans entrance!

The theme-park-styled entrance to the Oceans exhibit.

giant Neptune!

What better way to learn about water than in a watery science-lab playground with a giant Neptune in the center (or Poseidon, whichever).

giant mesh skeleton!

Dangling above it all in the museum’s heart is a giant mesh skeleton. Also, more butterflies and more Marvel cameos.

Jazz Hands superhero!

Speaking of superheroes: one hallway features artwork by local talents who created and visualized their own. Longtime MCC readers get why Jazz Hands spoke to us. Art by Tanya Fullerton.

…and with that we took our leave, for other corners of Columbus beckoned. As did food.

To be continued! Other chapters in this very special MCC miniseries:

Part 1: The Merry Marvel Museum Menagerie
Part 2: Mighty Marvel Cinemania
Part 3: How to Draw Comics the Marvel Way
Part 5: Schiller Park Intermezzo
Part 6: Lichtenstein Pre-Pop
Part 7: All Around the CMA
Part 8: The Columbus Cuisine Collection
Part 9: Arts in Columbus
Part 10: Sir, This is a Wendy’s
Coda: Happy Birthday, Captain Janeway

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