pink chalk :: are you kidding me?

Yesterday I said my goodbyes to LIC treasure 5Pointz (photos to come). It’ll be demolished this year thanks to city council and developers, unless the artists win the federal suit they filed last week. Why tear it down? To build ugly, luxury high-rise condos. NYC’s specialty of late.

This morning on my walk to Mysore, I stopped on my corner in disbelief. “IS THAT A VERIZON AD IN PINK CHALK?” I asked aloud. Is it a joke? Can it be true?

I googled. It’s a real deal. Does this mean that Verizon, your corporate friend who donates thousands upon thousands to the Tea Party and wants to end Net Neutrality so they can finally control what you access online by invoking its first amendment rights to “edit” the content you see (seriously), is sending its unpaid marketing interns into the streets at 4am to chalk up some street ad copy? Why isn’t Bloomberg sending his boys after them? Too busy with Banksy and skateboarders?

Well, it’s seems they’ve been doing this, at least in D.C., since 2006.

I haven’t been shooting as much on my Mysore walk because in SoHo so much of the stickering and graffiti and visuals are kind of corporate. Being too unplugged from pop culture and brands, I can’t really tell if it’s real, or taking the piss, or actually a corporate attempt at cool. And I thought this was bad.

Hey look, Extra Extra!  Verizon’s 3Q profits exceeded expectations, rising 40%. So they pull in revenues of about 120 billion a year? Crikey. Too big to fail indeed.

And more news. As I sat here typing, I received an AYNY email with news that the city is threatening to let developers destroy the sculpture garden on Mott Street, one of the few community spaces in SoHo and Nolita. “There will be a community board meeting on Nov 4th at 6:30 pm at the Public School on Baxter Street. The more people who show up, the better the chances of preserving the park.” Let’s go. I wonder if they’ll promise us community jobs and artists’ space in the new monstrosity.

Patti Smith and David Byrne don’t like it either. For “a bitterly nostalgic look at a city in the process of going extinct” check out Jeremiah’s Vanishing New York. It’s pretty great.

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