Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Freeze Tag

I was walking home from campus tonight, Paul Simon style. You know, slip sliding away, because the city doesn't throw salt on icy sidewalks in working-class neighborhoods.

It's just begun to snow this year. Tonight I made the observation that snow is not only a great way to cover up all the street bum piss and dog crap and rat drool coating the sidewalks, but it's also a beacon for half-hearted graffiti artists: People in my neighborhood tag the layer of new snow on cars.

In general I don't really appreciate the artistic value that graffiti may have. I don't see it as somehow beautiful yet edgy, as an insightful expression of a thriving urban youth culture. It may be all those things. But I'm just a grumpy old lady. In my day, we inhaled paint; we didn't spray things with it.

Either way, I feel like tagging isn't even graffiti. It's just cliche. Everyone does it. How is that a form of self-expression? And tagging in a thin layer of snow? Even lamer.

So "ACE" tagged the hood of a blue Oldsmobile. And when I rounded the corner, someone had tagged a minivan window with the words "death note." I mean, if you're trying to be bad ass, don't sound like you're in your kitchen labeling jars with Post-Its.

"Wheat germ."

This is one of those posts that's going to reveal me as idiotically middle class.

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