It was inappropriate of me to giggle while reading the Indy’s “Artist Riled Over Damaged Sawdust Festival Mural.” But I’ve been there. No I don’t mean I had anything to do with this defacement. In fact, I have an alibi. My wife and I were having free lunch samples at Costco. She’ll tell you that I take her to all the finest places. To show me her appreciation she bought me a coffin on the way out.
There’s nothing funny about graffiti. Correction—there was one time. I took my granddaughter to Chicago’s Brookfield Zoo. We were standing before the giraffe. “Do you like him?” My granddaughter said, “I don’t like graffiti.” I said, “No honey, he’s a giraffe.” My granddaughter held her ground. “Graffiti bad.” She started to cry. She pointed to a boy a short distance away. “He should get a timeout.” I looked. The boy was sporting a poop emoji t-shirt. I said, “That is naughty. Let’s tell the giraffe to lick off the bad graffiti.” She stopped crying. “Good idea Pop-Pop. You get the giraffe. I’ll get the kid.” Security intervened. We had a wonderful time.
Other than this one time, graffiti is serious business. I remember one Friday about a month ago. My wife and I were walking to town to get some breakfast and to pick up an Indy. I like to know as soon as possible if “Pet Peeves” is in it. I’m embarrassed to say I know the delivery schedule, as well as the Indy does.
We were a block from La Casa Del Camino at Cress and Coast Highway. (Heads up. The hotel gets early copies for readers who just can’t wait until the column hits their driveway.) And then it happened. I looked down too late to stop myself from stepping on an open discarded copy of the Indy. I had just added my footprint to others who had stomped all over the picture of my face and column. My wife laughed way too hard. “You found it. Or should I say it found you?” She couldn’t stop laughing. “It’s defacement,” I cried. “No,” she said. “It’s a critic’s review.” I tried to hold my ground while standing on my face. “This hurts when it happens to you.” My wife now doubled over and short of breath wheezed out, “I’m sorry. Let’s get you a fresh copy before your readers get their hands, I mean their feet, on it.”
Okay, I admit there were two incidences where graffiti was less than serious. But in this case, I do feel bad for the artists who worked so hard on the Festival of Arts’ street mural. It goes without saying that we should be respectful of each other’s works. At the very least, the offending graffiti artist should have secured a clean slate/wall, with the permission of owner, to display their work.
As a remedy, I encourage frustrated graffiti artists to get a copy of the Indy, open up the newspaper to the “Pet Peeves” column and draw a moustache on my face. You’ll feel better. I do. I’ve done it for years.
Crantz tells the Indy, that the Pageant of the Masters is upping security this year. They’re worried that their tableau vivants will be graffitied and the actors won’t run away.