Manac Flying Moose Mud Flap- 05.29.08
As if you don’t already think i’m strange enough ~ that NY trip for design week, which branched off into a roadtrip up to play in the woods in vermont… has been extended a few more days, and from vermont, we kind of decided to spontaneously drive down to Earlysville, Virginia… which is where i’m now posting from! If there’s one thing i’ve learned/realized during this little random adventure, it’s that for me, inspiring design details pop up nearly everywhere everyday in my life, and whether that’s at ICFF or while driving for 10+ hours straight down New England… design is omnipresent, and what really keeps me going.
On that note, my silly exciting find of the day yesterday was after about 8-9 hours of straight driving, stuck in INSANE traffic in NY that was moving at about 20 mph for over 2 hours, and i found myself staring at large semis and their various mud flaps and signage and the typography on them… and then i saw it. Mudflaps with FLYING MOOSE! Forget unicorns and pegasuses… flying moose! I forced dan to try and take a pic of it with his iphone (which i will have to bother him later to get it off)… the one we saw was like the one in the bottom left, it seemed friendlier than what appears to be the newer version on their site now.
So continuing on the Jackalope theme of north american mythological creatures… we sat in traffic discussing the idea of flying moose, and then reading up on the background of the Manac Trucking/Trailer Manufacturer which had this awesome creature as their logo. Turns out that this magnificent creature comes from a native american legend! Very cute tale, read it on the next page, and also see a picture i found of the statue of the Manac flying moose logo!
Since i couldn’t find our pic of the mudflap yet, the one in the image above i found via flickr user prodigal dog!
And while poking around flickr, i also found the image below from flickr user jaub:
Here is the native american legend of the winged moose as found on the Manac site:
Well before the arrival of the first white settlers, the Abenaquis tribe lived in a village where the Mechatigan and Manosak rivers meet.
The Abenaquis tribe would return to this area every year to stock up on food, which was plentiful here thanks to the two rivers and the surrounding forests.
According to the legend, Mahanak, the son of the grand chief Metgermett, befriended a young moose that had lost its mother when she tried to protect it from a pack of attacking wolves. When Mahanak found the young moose, it was badly injured and weak and was slowly dying.
The two friends became inseparable. One spring day, Mahanak and his friend were returning to the village after a long trek through the Etchemin countryside. They were forced to take a different route because the melting snow had caused the mighty Manosak river to rise. In an effort to avoid a huge rock, the two companions lost their foothold, fell into the raging river and were swept away by a powerful current.
Mahanak managed to grab hold of the moose’s antlers and climb onto its back. As they were approaching the Devil’s waterfalls, Mahanak implored the spirits of the forest to come to their rescue.
The spirits remembered Mahanak’s act of kindness on the day he saved his young friend. The spirits helped the moose descend the falls by keeping its head above the water and saving Mahanak from drowning. Two old hunters, who had witnessed the scene, said that the moose had descended the falls slowly, as though it had wings.
The following night, Mahanak had a dream. The spirits of the forest told him that his moose would be leaving him to go to the land of the spirits where it would watch over the inhabitants of the forest. Mahanak then saw his companion nod good-bye and slowly fly away, opening its mighty wings. By sunrise, the moose had disappeared.