Nothing to See Here, Folks

Ha Ha Ha Ha!

I’m just back from 4 days in Key West where Guido and I enjoyed ourselves thoroughly, if not excessively.  Nah.  It was at least excessive.

But homecoming is always good, even once we figure out from the visible evidence that one of the cats (the Special One.  Special as in Special Olympics) managed to fall into my toilet, doubtlessly in a frenzied attempt to escape the playful wrestling of the kitten, who occasionally morphs into a crazed, wide-eyed, furry Ramboid creature.  While both felines survived, the toilet required attention.

Anyway, after spending time in lovely KW, finding this in the news is nose-wrinkling:

Picture downtown [Hollywood’s] walls, boarded-up buildings and alleyways as giant blank canvases calling out for vibrant, color-splashed artistic expression. That’s the way the city sees it — and so does Miami-art scenester and abstract cartoon artist David “Lebo” Le Batard, who has offered his services free.

In an effort to convert blight to bright, the city’s newly formed mural-review committee has given thumbs up to Le Batard’s vivid, primary-color concept for the plywood-covered storefronts on the southwestern arc of Young Circle.

The murals will be limited to the confines of downtown’s Live Music District, running along Hollywood Boulevard and Harrison Street and bounded by 21st Avenue and Young Circle.  — Sun-Sentinel

Oh, brother.   This is broken.

I know nothing about the artist save that he’s the brother of a supremely untalented sports columnist for the Miami Hurled whose over-long, insight-free columns have contributed handsomely to that newspaper’s reputations as a third-rate fishwrap for many years.  On days he writes, squids weep at the wasted ink.

But that aside, the idea of painting plywood on boarded-up buildings is a classic “lipstick on a pig” non-solution to a genuine problem that Hollywood’s leadership is incapable of resolving.  The problem isn’t the ugly plywood, it’s the abandoned business behind it, and the incapacity of the city and its business community to create both the environment and the deal to encourage entrepreneurship.   Instead they emulate Dania Beach.


Hollywood’s new business model: Duck and Cover.  This isn’t a business plan, it’s a faked orgasm.  What’s the future look like?   More abandoned structures, yawning alleys, plywood covered windows…..and artists volunteering their time and talent until the entire business district is a collage of paint and vacancies.  Colorful voids.  You want real business, restaurants, professional offices, etc., head north to Lauderdale or south to Miami.  You want painted plywood, stick around.

Surrender!!  I suspect the large French speaking population will feel right at home.

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4 Responses to Nothing to See Here, Folks

  1. Fran G'Panni says:

    Great hanging out at the Bull, Squats and Guido! Remember, you said next time we’re doing the clothing optional floor. Yes you did. Yes, you were drunk. See you again at the end of the month!

  2. Beardsley says:

    “On days he writes, squids weep at the wasted ink.”

    I thought we lost you. Welcome back.

  3. Hugh Bris says:

    An abandoned building with painted plywood over the windows is still an abandoned building. The city would do better making deals with landlords to allow artists to set up galleries at $1/month rent in return for free monthly exhibitions. Bring in food trucks, street artists, music, etc. The city might get prettier with painted plywood panels, but it won’t get any more lively, and without tenants, there’s no tax base.

  4. doctordenim says:

    Lebo is as bad now as he was when he used to go by Britto

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