April 2, 2011

Benevolence and Malice in Graffiti

I was in the restroom of a restaurant recently (PEEING!) and spotted a funny sign. The original version was fairly typical--inconsistent capitalization, a typo, and no punctuation--but what made it uniquely ambitious was the attempt to combine two barely related instructions on one piece of paper. That of course gave some clever urinator the idea of linking them and completely changing the message:

I was very impressed by the simplicity of the two X's creating a positive (albeit pro-smoking),LOLworthy message through omission all the while leaving the original message visible so the viewer could compare both. Maybe it was just laziness, but I think that simplicity made it twice as funny.

Of course, I was slightly intoxicated and figured it would be a good idea to continue the evolution of graffiti:

My self-psychoanalysis screams jealousy. My brain clearly fixated on "king" because of the need to one-up and become the clever graffiti champion of this territory. I continued the battle theme by referencing Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!! and writing IN BOLD CAPS. Also, clearly not content with the simplicity of the previous vandal's X's, I instead went for violent scribbles.

Not surprisingly, the sign was removed soon after. I hope you all learned a lesson today.

(the lesson is always take a picture of your vandalism)

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