Our National Parks

in Ten Words or Less at Yelp

We historians, whether professional or amateur, casual or serious, real or imagined have many conceptual ideas about how history should be taught, learned, excepted as truth or fancy, and used to make decisions.

Without regard to how history is learned we look at the “younger” generations and shake our heads thinking, “will they ever learn?” The answer is yes, of course they will learn, but could we make their learning easier if we injected history with a full dose of humor?

Such a plan is clearly possible, but you need a very special person with a very acute sense of humor to make it viable. Amber Share is that one such person. Amber isn’t the one being funny, she is the one doing all the work of making us laugh at ourselves.

It is certainly apparent that Amber Share discovered our National Parks and decided to make the parks her raison d’être. She decided to use postcards to communicate with the world that most of us look at through tinted lenses and some others who can see only the trees instead of the forest.

Buzzfeed.com explains how it happens, “Apparently, U.S. national parks are also subject to the whims of Yelp users. These one-star reviews of iconic landmarks caught the attention of Raleigh, North Carolina-based illustrator, Amber Share, who decided to mix the worlds of art and critique. The results are hilarious and beautiful.

Please accept my apology in advance if you are among the uninitiated to Yelp.com. Yelp is an American company in San Francisco, California. The company develops, hosts, and markets the Yelp.com website that publishes crowd-sourced reviews about businesses, professionals and even government agencies and departments like the National Park Service. The reviews are measured in one to five star ratings.

Some of the responses to Buzzfeed’s article include: “Those people are idiots.” “Take their advice; stay home and make it better for those of us who love National Parks.” And, “I read reviews like these and picture a grumpy dad who wanted to go to a civil war battle site.”

Amber Share’s award-winning art is best appreciated on her postcards. I was the lucky recipient of a gift-pack of 14 of her tiny works of art on my last birthday. I have included a few so you can measure the degree of humor. If you’re inclined to go on and laugh at the simplicity of the American public – all of whom are surely younger than we are – then go to Amber’s website: https://subparparks.com.

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Robert E Gardner
3 months ago

Love your articles, thank you for a great publication.

Bob Kozak
3 months ago

Always nice to see Amber get some publicity for her efforts!

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