Pet Peeves

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Finding Plein Air Waldos

by Mark D. Crantz
by Mark D. Crantz

It’s a who’s dunnit. Next year’s Pageant of the Masters is called “Under the Sun.” Originally named “Painting Under Lamppost,” the show’s title was scratched when the 39 foot styrofoam lamppost of ‘Art & Nature’ had to be barged back to Newport Beach with a super pod of canines giving chase to christen it. However, the new named show will go on and highlight early Laguna plein air artists. Well, maybe highlight them if they can find any paintings with the artists in them. The show’s scriptwriter has put out a BOLO to the Susi Q Center and Laguna Woods seniors for long forgotten etchings of these missing artists. The scriptwriter explained, “Pageant shows are always difficult because old painters didn’t have Facebook. What I wouldn’t give to just have an avatar to work from.”

The Susi Q Center rounded up and deputized a posse of seniors to search for pictures of the missing artists. After instructions were given out one senior raised his hand and asked, “Who are we looking for?” Instructions were rehashed. There weren’t further questions. The posse was asleep. A quick catnap later and the seniors awoke refreshed and in hot pursuit of the missing plein air artists. “I’ll look outside,” offered a deputized senior. “Good idea,” said his friend, “If they painted outdoors, then it follows that a picture of them should be in plein sight out there.” Off they went, before other seniors could explain to them that any pictures left outside for 100 years or so would be unrecognizable. The rest of the posse took to looking in attics and basements for lost pictures.

Laguna police received many calls from area residents. “Hello, police? I’d like to report several old guys rummaging around in my attic.” Police responded, “Old guys? How do you know they’re old guys?” “Well, I had to help them up the ladder. They’re wobbly. And now up there, they’re screaming at me to get them down. My cat is stuck up there with them. Come quick. They deputized my cat. The cat doesn’t sound happy about it.”

Meanwhile, the two seniors searching the great outdoors got as far as lower Park Avenue Plaza. “What is this place?” asks the senior senior of the two. Senior-junior answers, “Don’t know. It was a shortcut to the library.” Senior-senior scratches his head. “Well nobody is returning books nowadays with these tables and chairs here.” Senior Junior scratches Senior-senior’s head. “Why are you scratching my head?” Senior-junior says, “Mine isn’t itchy. Yours is. Just helping out.” Senior-senior replies, “I’ll scratch my own head. Help me move these tables and chairs. We’re still Friends of the Library, aren’t we?”

Laguna police received numerous calls about horn honking motorists who came to support two seniors moving furniture and one loitering day-tripper from the middle of lower Park Avenue back to the sidewalk. Eyewitnesses estimated a car a minute came to the seniors’ rescue. Within hours, several hundred motorists showed their happiness of the re-opening of the library shortcut by helping the seniors find plein air artist pictures in the library’s archives. By the end of the day all the plein air Waldos were found so the Pageant could go on.


Crantz tells the Indy that he is not in this year’s “Under the Sun” production. He ran out of sun tan lotion.





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