Painted Ladies

We sit huddled in the dark.The long weeds by the overpass buffet our hormone-addled complexions, as another car, on the twisting country road below, splashes its headlights over our hiding spot. The six 5-gallon drums of paint, mixed in a flurry in Lee's dark garage, are a pale mixture of every light color we can find. Here in the dark, the buckets look like they are filled with the milk of an especially sick cow. It is thick and syrupy and foreboding.

We've been here for an hour. The cool October night has settled in around us and apart from the cars packed with overly inebriated boys bombing up the hill desperate to get plastered at the cheap dorms of the community college that roar past at random intervals, we are alone in the dark, starless night. The occasional sniff can be heard over the wind as it tickles the long stems of the grasses. A testimony to the chill that our noses are beginning to feel. It's almost time. We look at one another and nod.

The overpass is not busy but it is large. It is covered with bad graffiti singing deep booming sonnets about how Paul is desperately in love with Amber (Paul + Amber, TLA!!) and what a good fuck Joanne is. That's what gave us the idea. Too much graffiti. Too much BAD graffiti. We could do better. But with all this one would ever be able to pick out our wit and witticisms. We would need a clean slate.  We'd have to paint the whole bridge white BEFORE we could impart our own artistic vision upon the world.

So we sit in the grass with the buckets of milky paint and wait for the dark to be dark enough. For our nerve to be steely enough. For someone else to go first.

We start.

It takes several hours of monotonous rolling to cover the entire face and tunnel of the overpass. We work hard at it though, eventually not even bothering to duck as the cars race by on the road below us. The night gets colder and I blow into hands that are pink from the cold and blistered from the fast action of the roller pole. We are furious and young and happy and mischievous. We know we are leaving our indelible mark upon the world. Around 3AM we finish. My brilliance stands out against the light background, a beacon for all who will pass by on their way to the city. My words etched into that vast swatch of freshly painted granite stand out like they belong on a tablet carried by Moses.

"Sid Lives" and an Anarchy Symbol.

Fucking genius.

The next day we pack into Lee's Toyota and drive over to see our handiwork in the daylight. Turns out... when we mixed the paint in his dark garage we mistook the light color we had produced in such volume to be white.

It was really more of a newborn baby girl, pastel pink.

I'm not saying "Anarchy!" as a call for social reform is best proposed as a legitimate idea when espoused from the mouths of a slobbering radical in front of an official building of some sort...but it sure as fuck looks goofy on a pink thruway overpass.


Grey Street Girl said...

And so the first "Breast Cancer Awareness" advertisement was born....

Kurt said...

@ GSG: At that age I was keenly aware of breasts, but had not encountered any. They were like Big Foot or Atlantis to me.

Periodically Consistent said...

I wonder if Nancy would even appreciate the lovely shade of pink? I always saw her as more of a periwinkle kind of girl.

Cynthia said...

But see, THAT is the essence of anarchy. Anyone can write anarchy in black scratchy letters. But writing anarchy in pastel pink bubble letters with an exclamation point that has a heart instead of a dot at the bottom, that rocks.

Just like the Sid Vicious margerine commerical or whatever. You can't be disappointed in Sid. That's him dude. A self admitted total sell-out from day one. He just doesn't give a fuck. He'll sell vinegar and water douches or car wax for a buck. Whatever.

RebmaEiram said...


Char said...

so, it's no anarchy for the color impared? that seems wrong....