Peace signs. Roach clips. Antiwar posters. Roach clips. Snarky bumper stickers brimming with insurrectionist innuendo. Roach clips. The 1960s were loopy with these accouterments, some of the premiere memorabilia from those grand and glorious days almost beyond recall. Prominent among them was the butterfly, a mainstay for everybody from graphic illustrators to rock groups. It even had something for the rest of us. Catch a butterfly at rest, and you'll find it bears a striking resemblance to a roach clip.
Mariposa is the Spanish word for butterfly. Mariposa is also the name of a cool Normal Heights ice cream shop, whose owners obviously empathize with the era amid the peace signs and antiwar posters and snarky bumper stickers brimming with insurrectionist innuendo all over the walls. The ice cream isn't bad either, and it's suited to everybody-you'll find up to 25 great flavors depending on the day, including peanut butter and pumpkin (their version of coconut is one of the best around). And check it out: Mariposa makes every one of those flavors (and its sherbet and sorbet) on the premises, with about one-third the sugar and half the air. And in the spirit of all things homemade, it has an 80-year-old, hand-cranked ice cream maker on display. Meanwhile, a single scoop will bust you $2, with two scoops at $3.50. You can also get sundaes and malts, and $13 gets you two quarts of the hand-packed take-out stuff.
Mariposa is at 3450 Adams Ave.; it's closed Tuesdays, but it's open from 1 to 9 p.m. the rest of the week and on Sundays from 2 to 8 p.m. The number is 619-284-5197. If you go (and if you're old enough), you may become flush with sobering memories of America's past. But sit down with a scoop or two and give yourself a minute. The butterfly in you will take over momentarily.