Same New Year, Same Old Gimmick

Buford Youthward

In a world of fools and folly, it is no strange news to hear that process is king. The processes of analogy and metaphor hold no monopoly in either complex or simple minds.

Production and products offer no value except as the investment we make in understanding their evolution. Everything has become, or taken the shape of some product, from packaged sporting events to political party lines. When we ask for a return on our investment, we inevitably end up staring at ourselves in the mirror.

Why wave banners and mantras while denying your trump card, the process? What good is a product if we are denied an education during its consumption? Even sugary diversions provide emotional stimuli that drive some basic need to know and feel. There's more pleasure in the adventure than the treasure.

Conflict is the origin of everything. The voodoo language of graffiti is the perfect vaccine. Conformity suits certain spirits, but I don't believe anyone knows who they are until they face their own otherness. Sometimes we must cast ourselves in our own personal ice age in order to understand our own truth and history.

In this way, graffiti acts as that small circular mirror pitched in the corner store ceiling watching us watch ourselves 'lifting and drifting. We provide the trespassers delight; skilled barbarians throwing old carpet over the razor ribbon and hopping the gate.

Graffiti as product is a fraud. Results are static, processes are dynamic. Graffiti, as a process, is instant satisfaction, pre-sweetened overload, whereas the by-products of graffiti are safe, filtered analogies of experience.

When graffiti is captured as a finished form it is static, a counterfeit, while the authentic graffiti process is dynamic, an ecstatic gratification. The map is not the journey; the picture is not the passion. Graffiti is the gimmick to end all gimmicks; stretching letters like salt water taffies, twisted Sugar Daddies and melted Milky Way bars. It's the Capital way: all profit, no loss, and negligible liability. The graffiti writer's duty is to do anything today. Be somebody. Become somebody.

Graffiti writers ink the social contract, rewrite the terms and conditions, and offer no money-back guarantee or 30-day trial period. There are no defenses in the age of the payoff, where assimilation is just a click away.

Tactics must drive strategy. But keep in mind that tactics don't complete a process; they continue to shape one. Marginal tactics executed passionately always satisfy more fully than brilliant tactics executed marginally.

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