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Van customizing shop

of the van shop mural In Pittsburgh's Lawrenceville neighborhood, there's an old van customizing shop whose windows have been boarded up. Usually, that'd make a building uglier than a pig in a mincing machine, but in this case, someone took the time to paint over the boards with Charming Scenes of Urban Life (tm).

The van shop's sign alone is a classic. It evokes an era (before my time, thankfully) when vans roamed the earth unchallenged and unmocked. Note the text on the sign offering installation of "flares, spoilers, & sunvisors", "custom grills", and of course, "captain chairs". In case anyone wants to call the number on the sign to inquire about getting their van customized, I'm pretty sure that this place is in the 412 area code.

By the way, this building is on Penn Ave., near Main St., and right across from Tram's Kitchen. If you haven't been to Tram's, you're missing great Vietnamese food. Especially the fresh rolls, which are the best I've ever had anywhere (disclaimer: I've never been to Vietnam).

As always, click on the picture for a larger version.


Tram's spring rolls are sublime, but the spring rolls at Pho Minh, about half a mile further up Penn, are arguably even better.

Haven't been to Pho Minh. I'll give it a try.

How could they be better than perfection? I don't buy that, not for a second.