|Will Orange County look like this in a few years?
As many of you may know, Ladera Ranch's Mercantile West Shopping Center was raided by graffiti-happy taggers (and if you still have no idea what I'm talking about either get with it or read the article above.) With obscene and demeaning phrases written on the walls of shops that men, women and children shop at everyday, California's once aesthetically flawless counties just became flawed. And although the racial slurs were cleaned up, I can’t help but wonder what’s next for the once quaint and Mayberry-esque County?
At times, the majority of the O.C. seems a little too perfect. Nowhere else do physically flawless people drive to their chocolate box homes in shiny coupes and go to bed in 5,000 thread-count sheets, all the while not worrying about the fact that their front doors are unlocked.
Don’t get me wrong—I’m far from deeming the streets of Orange County as daunting. I don’t think the ‘burbs will be sporting telephone pole-hanging Converse anytime soon. Half of the people (kids, really) responsible for these markings probably live in Coto de Caza or some other affluent neighborhood of Orange County and have nothing else better to do than paint with the permanent markers bought with their parents' money. Do they know that they live in a place commonly referred to as “the bubble”? Aspiring O.C. gangs, please understand that the rest of the the state pokes fun at our Orange Curtain concealed ways of life. After all, a city/county that doubles as a “Real Housewives” set can’t be too threatening, right?
So while we don’t see cop cars infiltrating our neighborhoods to the point where we don’t blink twice when seeing the red and blue flashers reflecting off our backyard walls, we do see tagged walls more than we’d like to.
But the real question is: why? What are these professional calligraphers trying to tell us? Are these so-called gangs nothing more than medieval hoodlums attempting to inform us of the king’s arrival? Taggers: this isn’t the fifteenth century. Ornate cursive went out of style with knights and goblets.
I get perplexed when attempting to decipher the motives behind the silly actions of these wannabe thugs. While I can understand the point of “marking your territory” (which I thought only male dogs did on walks) I just do not understand why they feel compelled to write their crew info in flamboyant font. Perhaps they lost the identification bracelet they had when they were 5-years-old and a personalized wall containing all the important information is the next best thing. I’m surprised I’ve never seen a wall with grade, room number and teacher’s name written in three tidy lines.
My advice? These cookie-cutter criminals need to go and scribble on some parchment paper with a quill pen if they desire a penmanship-practice fest. Office Depot is open pretty late and fresh ink and feathers aren’t that expensive these days. Buy some tape, mount it in an alley and the O.C. taggers have successfully informed other Orange County hooligans—who so successfully display accurate adult male golden-retriever behavior—that that wall is their wall.
Please report any local graffiti sightings to your Orange County Sherriff’s Department. If you are not quite sure where to find these calligraphers, please visit their best friends—your local blacksmith, shoemaker or welder—at your nearest bazaar as they are likely to be hanging out in the back room.