Snappy September - Day One - Clerk is a JERK
It's that time of year again, when I try to blog every single day for a month. I did it in 2008 during Appreciative August and twice in 2009 with Knowledge November and the daggy Doggy December.
In 2010 it's Snappy September. Silly LOLcat captions, cartoons and artworks are the backbone of this blog, but this month it's all about my photos. Ones I've taken with my old Canon 'sure shot' won on 'Wheel of Fortune' in 1988, or the digital brick we bought in 2003; or the brilliant SLR that was a birthday gift from Love Chunks and Sapphire in 2009.
So, are you ready?
I've never really paid much attention to graffiti unless it's really unavoidable and ugly in both senses of the word.
You know the stuff I mean: the classically horrendous, hand-written 'Sharon is a mole and we're going to punch her face in' local trivia that's mostly found scrawled on the back of roadhouse toilets or thick spray-painted hate like 'Go Home Afghanis/Greenies/People Who Think for Themselves.'
Therefore whenever I see the little white panel van with 'Graffiti Removal Squad' driven around the neighbourhood by the nice retired blokes, I usually give them a wave and say 'Good on yer' as they pass. They've got their hands full and therefore don't have time or the energy to climb on top of shot towers, railway bridges and apartment buildings to remove the tags that plague our area.
In Flemington, graffiti tags are on everything. If the Thursday winos who like to sun themselves on the tram stop seats by Racecourse Road stay motionless too long they're likely to have 'Mine' or 'Herpys' or 'Klerks' written on them in fat texta.
And its Clerk (with a 'C' and no 's' at the end) and Klerks (with a 'K' and an 's' at the end) who completely and utterly dominates our little part of the city.
Clerk/Klerks have tagged the railway bridge, the actual track, the station's doors, roof guttering, heritage-listed pedestrian bridge, cement underpass, platform benches and brickwork.
According to a policeman I chatted to, keen graffiti taggers hate it when haters or lovers of their 'work' mis-spell their tag. He then said, "So go on and write about him. If he - and yes, they're mostly male - is like our other frequent taggers, then he'll be eager to google himself online to see how infamous he's become and if you mistake his work - Clerk or Klerks - it'll be a huge insult."
Well, KClerks - YOU are the insult. Clearly you have a lot of time on your hands, money to spend on art supplies and perhaps suffer from insomnia or restless legs syndrome, because your 'art' is mostly done in the middle of the night.
I've found you on the back of the truck owned by Mr Divvy Van's house mate
.....and on this poor backpacker's van by the railway station. Sapphire and I have also seen your handiwork on the tennis courts, shopfronts, builder's port-a-loos, Laksa King renovations, garage doors, school signs, road work barriers, roundabouts, chimney tops and billboards.
It's hard not to ask why someone who clearly has a lot of time, daring and energy doesn't put it to good use. You know, stuff like rescuing kittens, catching drug dealers, fixing up cracked walls, fighting crime etc.
Whilst I'm currently a Litter Ninja, I'm still avoiding the suggestions that people 'helpfully' throw my way about tackling graffiti. Picking up a squashed Maccas box is over in seconds and makes a difference for - oh ok, maybe only a day - but graffiti can take hours to remove and cost a lot of solvent, paint or water to do so and reappear again that night. Pretty dispiriting stuff.
Apart from being a Night Time Ninja with Harry Potter's borrowed invisibility cloak, how would I catch you, Mr CKlerks? And if I did so, armed with just a bit of middle-aged, middle-class anger and some $5.95 barbecue tongs, what could I do to change things?