Protests against gentrification and pleas of "there-goes-the-neighborhood" can take many forms, but here's one not oft seen—OK, never seen: a Seattle woman has wed herself to a warehouse as a show of support for the abandoned building, which will be demolished and soon replaced with a new housing complex. At the wedding ceremony, the song "Lean on Me" played in the background and Baylonia Aivaz remarked, "I'm doing this to show the building how much I love it, how much I love community space and how much I love this neighborhood. And I want to stop it from gentrification."
Some ceremony details:
"The wedding was held outdoors in the rain, in front of the old warehouse's fenced-off entrance with a small crowd—and idled demolition machinery—looking on. There was a minister present, and a few Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence were there to bless the ceremony. The minister read a few passages and orchestrated the exchange of vows between Babylonia and the warehouse." Later, in an interview with local station KOMO-TV, Aivaz elaborated: "If corporations can have the [same] rights as people, so can buildings."
In recent weeks, Occupy Seattle protesters have set up shop in the warehouse, which is more than a century old, claiming that the space might have more valuable purposes than fancy new residences (a community or art center, for instance). Despite the effort—Aivaz's insistence that "[t]he moment we entered the warehouse we became a true community. We became self-motivated. We worked co-operatively"—the building will be razed. If nothing else, gotta give her an A for effort.
· A vow against gentrification: Seattle woman 'marries' a warehouse [Los Angeles Times via NBC Bay Area]
· CHS *Wedding* Pics | To have and to hold until the backhoes knock her down [Capitol Hill Seattle]