Monday, July 9, 2012

Independence Week

And we're back from the woods.

There are many reasons to go camping at 6,000 feet above sea level in the high Eastern Sierra Nevada's.

The opportunity to reconnect with nature, family and friends.
The chance to breath invisible air.
And the freedom to urinate anywhere, at any given moment.

Another reason to visit Independence, CA is to experience the annual 4th of July Parade and Town Picnic, wherein elitist, West Los Angeles, socially-liberal Jews like ourselves get to stand shoulder to shoulder with fellow Americans, who might not share the same uh...let's say, enlightened, philosophy on life.

There was for instance, the pig-tailed 15-year old girl, who sauntered through the picnic grounds, corn cob in one hand, a Dr. Pepper in the other, while sporting a T-shirt that read God Bless America. As she passed by we caught a glimpse of the back of her T-shirt which read Straight and Proud.

I never realized that my heterosexuality, the orientation of more than 7 billion people on the planet, was a source of pride, but now I do. Proof that you can learn something everyday.

Even more impressive than this young girl's burgeoning womanhood was the fact that her homemade T-shirt was all spelled correctly. Believe me that is not to be taken for granted.

This year, the picnic festivities featured the first-ever Independence Spelling Bee with more than 30 contestants, from ages 9-73. The first gamer, a 10th-grader from Lone Pine, who did not appear to be under the influence of any drugs, stepped up to the front of the stage fashioned from old truck pallets and proceeded to spell the first word of the contest, H-A-R-P-U-N-E.

"Harpune, an instrument used to kill whales."

But the grand prize for meth-adled ignorance belonged to a mullet-wearing dad in his late twenties. He had been out of prison long enough to father two children, an infant cradled on his shoulder and another 3-year old replicant of himself holding his right hand. The toddler looked like he had never owned any decent foot-coverings and had never sat in a dentist's chair.

Fortunately the kid did not have any tattoos.

But scribbled across the father's blubbery arm were these three telling words:
eet. fuk. kil.

(recreated above, using an internet Tattoo generator.)

I can only assume the misspelling was intentional. Meant as some ironic statement about the need to simplify our lives in an overly complex world. A wry commentary about the devolvement of the species due to entangled global economics and the escalating rise of technology which is now exceeding the parameters of Moore's Law.

I'm pretty sure that's what Mullet-head had in mind.

As I moved in closer to snap a picture of his existential ink, I saw him eyeing the crowd and heard him grumble something to his buddy:

"Damn, I thought this were America."

Now I don't know what he saw to elicit such a visceral reaction. But unless he spotted Hitler at a picnic table sharing some corn nuts with Joseph Stalin and Osama Bin Laden, that's about the most un-American thing one can possibly say.

Unless he was going for irony again.

1 comment:

george tannenbaum said...

At least he put eat, fuck, kill in the right order. If he jumbled them it would be really sick.