It was almost two pm, on the last sunday before labor day. This is the sunday of the shade festival in Grant Park. It is also the time to go see the living walls . To pass the time before leaving, PG was twisting through the tweets of Teju Cole. He saw a double feature. It had trouble written all over it.
@tejucole 1. None of your business. 2. None of your business. 3. None of your business.
4. No. 5. None of your business.
@tejucole Want to be depressed by humanity? In Google search box, type “is,” followed by a space bar.
Sure enough, PG opened a new tab, and typed “is” in the google spot. Instead of hitting the space bar, he hit enter, which may or may not affect the results. Just as he was about to sink into the nerdosphere, the phone rang. It was Uzi, saying that he would be over in a few minutes. This limits the time that PG can devote to this hopeless endeavor. When he gets back this evening, there will probably be something else to occupy his attention.
Teju Cole is known for telling little stories in 140 characters. They are like a Chinese drawing, where the blank spaces are an opportunity for your imagination to take over. Even if the riders were to show up in the next minute, these little stories will be waiting.
@tejucole Going up Monte Salvatore in the Swiss Alps, C. M. Chandler, of New York, did not put a foot wrong, but coming down, he did.
@tejucole Hilarious lads in Williamsburg placed bullets on the tracks. A train set them off and Browhall, real estate agent, was shot in the leg.
@tejucole Unable to pay for his mother’s funeral, Zindel, 17, of Broome Street, had to rob a grocery store. Bullshit. His mother is alive and well.
@tejucole Miss Curran, newly arrived from Ireland, is the fourth fatality in as many years at Room 21 of the Broadway Raines Hotel. Hoodoo?
@tejucole Earth must look peaceful from space. In Chicago, Mr Brand underestimated his wife and got a black eye, a torn ear, and two missing teeth.
@tejucole Deaf-mute Max Katz crossed Canal Street. Peddler Selig Katz (no relation) hurried down the Bowery. “Look where you’re going!” Blows ensued.
@tejucole Alas, Mrs Mary Thomas, of Pittsburgh, neglected to remove her false teeth last night and did not live till morning.
@tejucole Nobody’s perfect. The artiste on East 22nd Street who shoots at high heels from a distance got Rebecca Sussman in the foot.
@tejucole In addition to heading a 4th Avenue firm, Rosa Zindel also wrote fiction: $5,795 in fake checks, to be exact. She was arrested for forgery.
Before PG ran out of tweets, Uzi arrived, along with his nephew Hazmatt. The trip down Clairmont Road, into, town began. The plan was to see a few of the walls, and then go to the festival.
The first wall was an underpass, and it was not worth stopping for. The second was on Hosea L. Williams Boulevard, in Kirkwood. Last year, this location took a bit of looking, but this time it popped right up. It was a black and white drawing, and looked like the artist had a good time painting it.
The next stop was painfully trendy East Atlanta. There were two walls on Flat Shoals, but PG was not sure where to turn. He found a risky place to park, and walked over to where the murals should have been. One was on the side of a nightclub that had changed names at least twice recently. There was a parking lot between two buildings, with a padlocked gate blocking the entrance. The murals were inside, on facing sides of the two buildings. PG took pictures between the barbed wire.
A picture of George W. Bush with a Barack Obama mask led PG to tell a story. Once, PG was in a group of people taking phone calls during a public television fundraiser. Once, when the cameras were rolling. PG held a picture of Ronald Reagan in front of his face. Some people were horrified. The fundraising was not affected.
The next stop was Grant Park. Parking karma was with PG, who found a place a block off Boulevard. The portopotties had been moved, and were next to the entrance. (The spell check suggestion for portopotties: opportunities) This was a welcome sight for all three travelers.
The shade festival is the last summer festival in Atlanta, and usually comes at a time when people are tired of festivals. It has fairly light attendance, which may account for the parking karma. The festival crowd was a diverse bunch, with everybody friendly and enjoying the afternoon.
PG walked a few steps behind Uzi and Hazmatt. Even before PG tore up his knee, he was a slow walker. The lesson today was that lots of food venders were giving samples, and the slower you walk, the more samples you get.
There were no funnel cake samples given away. The funnel cake truck had bright new banners to welcome the cake funnelers. PG remembered something he read earlier this week… the guy working in the funnel cake truck has never cooked anything before except meth.
After a while, PG decided that the photographic theme of the day was going to be fat women. This was a racially diverse observation.
On the way back north, PG found the Krog Street tunnel. (The spell check suggestions for Krog: Grog, Frog, Grok, Kroger) The plan was to hit a few murals on the way home, but the only one they found was on Irwin Street, and it was not that special. There is always next sunday.
Going into the Piccadilly on North Druid Hills, PG thought of an incident there, but decided not to mention it. Uzi read PG’s mind, and felt obligated to talk about it out loud. Once, PG and Uzi went into the men’s room at this facility. A serving line employee was in there, in the finishing stages of taking a dump. He went back to work without washing his hands.