Vandalizing The Vandalism

After discovering yesterday morning that our garage door was one of the many hit in the neighborhood as part of Wednesday night’s tagging attack, I was successful in removing the smaller black tag with a bottle of graffiti remover we had, but the larger and infinitely more retarded silver tag wasn’t going to surrender so easily. So I went online to the City of Los Angeles Graffiti Abatement Program webpage and put in a request to have it painted out, and I spent the day fuming and repeatedly coming down and staring at it and hating it until I couldn’t take it anymore and grabbed that previously mentioned bottle of remover and a sturdier brush and scrub attacked it into a really oblivious craptastic mess, like so:

A neighbor chanced by while I was vicariously getting my aggressions out on whatever jackasses did this and he offered up the good and practical advice of using lacquer thinner to much greater and cleaner effect. But I explained to him that my point was driven far more viscerally than practically. That my aim wasn’t to remove the offending script entirely. At least not yet.

“I would rather it be my mess for the neighborhood to see, not theirs,” I said.

The neighbor nodded, probably not getting my point, which was to symbolically rub their noses in it. Before getting it permanently erased I wanted to render the barely readable scrawl completely illegible. To deface the defacement. To vandalize the vandalism. To slag the tag so that when the night-sneaking jackweasels slink by (and you know they will) to “admire” their handiwork, they’ll find this resident refused to let it stand untouched even a day. They’ll find their filth filthed. Rendered moot. Void. They’ll find I took their garbage and made it my own.



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Will Campbell arrived in town via the maternity ward at Good Sam Hospital way back in OneNineSixFour and has never stopped calling Los Angeles home. Presently he lives in Silver Lake with his wife Susan, their cat Rocky, dogs Terra and Hazel, and a red-eared slider turtle named Mater. Blogging since 2001, Will's web endeavors extend back to 1995 with, a comprehensive theater site that was well received but ever-short on capital (or a business model). The pinnacle of his online success (which speaks volumes) arrived in 1997, when much to his surprise, a hobby site he'd built called VisuaL.A. was named "best website" in Los Angeles magazine's annual "Best of L.A." issue. He enjoys experiencing (and writing about) pretty much anything creative, explorational and/or adventurous, loves his ebike, is a better tennis player than he is horr golfer, and a lover of all creatures great and small -- emphasis on "all."