Added on Friday 9 May 2008
They sucked steel from our hills and made a roller coaster, a gravy boat and pylons for suspending overhead wires. They also made knives and fashioned steel wool. They made boats out of steel that float, which is great because a bar of steel will sink. In America a lot of steel plants are in New Jersey, which is where Tony Soprano lives.
In the UK, steel is processed in a handfuls of alchemic sites but mainly in the North of England, in Middlesbrough, where I was born. Sometimes industrial cities produce the best art because there's so many chemical elements floating around and it infects the artists of music and painting and suchlike.
Today. I saw a parking ticket machine, a steel manhole cover, a stainless steel fork in the dinner hall and I even saw a steel lotus flower sculpture in a library book. Steel is everywhere.