Breaking Wind. Dukes of Hazard (--Again!) March 25, 2011



My crazy (but beloved) friend, Andrew, was after me for a YEAR; to paint a Confederate Battle Flag on his Nissan Stanza. I kept puttin' him off as I didn't have the time.

One day when I was driving to my studio in Santa Barbara, I saw littered along the road, a hundred or so large black stars made of paper. They were strewn about the side of the 101 freeway. I sensed an opportunity, so I pulled over and grabbed a few of the Stars. I remembered Andrew and his nagging, then thought they would be the perfect size stars for the project.

Andrew and I organized a painting day, and on that day Andrew drove up in his beater, (wearing a muscle man shirt). With Bandana and all he looked like some Red Neck from Dukes of Hazard! I immediately got to work: measuring and taping off the hood, spraying the blue stripes over the red. The stencils of stars were taped down over the blue bars and white was then sprayed for affect.

Two and a half hours later, I removed the tape, paper, stencils; and 'Cleared' it. Andrew posed for a snapshot photo in his car. I then sent Andrew off into the world in his new 'statement'. He was living his dream, which then became his nightmare!

The story goes like this: Andrew thought he'd like to have this flag emblazoned on his car. He thought it would look "cool!"...But it turns out he got so much attention and 'flack', that he felt like a fool!!

Barely 48 hours later, my phone rang. It was Andrew (peace be upon him), pleading for me to help him remove the flag. Now, I was torn... being I am a huge Civil War History Buff, I just couldn't bare to remove it. After a few deep breaths, and treating it like a Tibetan Sand Painting, I gave Andrew the directions for desecration. He then proceeded to take some Scotch-Brite, and sand the image of the Old Confederate Battle Flag, away. (Not to mention the red paint on his beater's bonnet.)

In retrospect, in REVISING HISTORY (HIS STORY), this one episode with Andrew was so brief. It was like passing gas on a windy day! Much like the South before the Civil War, it was here, and then Gone with the Wind. History repeated itself in a way for the both of us.

Now, if you ever see a Red Nissan Stanza driving down the road, check to see if there is a large red 'X' scraped out of the paint on the hood. If you see it, know that that "X" marks the actual spot, where VAN STEIN made his mark a long, long time ago.

Here on Earth, nothing lasts forever.