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American graffiti. January 3, 2013

Posted by ourfriendben in wit and wisdom.
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Silence Dogood here. Our friend Ben and I were on one of our road-trip vacations over the holidays, and had spent the night outside of Radford, Virginia. While OFB filled the tank at a local Sunoco station, I took advantage of the opportunity to head for the ladies’ room. (One of many priceless euphemisms for the bathroom, itself a euphemism, as is toilet, believe it or not. My favorite is the concept of the “rest area;” in Virginia, they even have “pet rest areas.” But I digress.)

Once in the bathroom, I saw that the inside of the stall door and part of one wall were covered with graffiti. No surprise there: I’ve seen many a stall door inscribed with sentiments of undying love, hate, and sarcasm. And indeed, there was one “Sue hearts Tony” on this particular door. But there was exactly one. Otherwise, all the way down the door on the left side were pro- and anti-Obama comments. These ranged from “Vote Obama OUT” (with the OUT scratched out, leaving “Vote Obama”) to rather more graphic comments (“[Bleep] Obama!” “I agree! What a hottie! I’d [bleep] him in a minute, bitch!”)

Political graffiti in a gas station bathroom stall is not something I’d have expected. But it paled beside the comments down the right-hand side of the door and on the adjacent wall. Here, an ongoing philosophical debate was occurring. It involved the nature of love and hate. Comments ranged from “The opposite of love isn’t hate, it’s ignorance” to quotations from the Gospel of St. John and St. Paul’s 1 Corinthians to excerpts from A Course in Miracles. Subsequent readers had noted which comments and quotes they agreed or disagreed with (“It’s not ignorance, it’s indifference” “Correct” [arrow drawn to indifference comment]).

Generally, when I go to the bathroom in a service station, I just hope there’s toilet paper and nobody’s sprayed the seat. To see that previous occupants have been engaging in political and philosophical, even theological, debate, is beyond anything I’d have previously imagined. Go, ladies, go.

‘Til next time,

Silence

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