I need to go on another outing to shoot new pictures. But instead, I looked back through my flickr entries and found this one. Isn't it great? I don't know when I took this picture, but flickr says it was uploaded on November 6, 2006, almost two years ago. I do remember that this picture was taken in the West Bottoms of Kansas City, on the north side of the 12th Street Viaduct, somewhere down by where they have all the Halloween haunted houses. I also remember that I talked my son into going with me on this particular outing; he drove until I told him to stop, I would jump out and wander around, he would wait patiently for me to come back. He was supposed to be my bodyguard, but we found that no such thing was needed. Even in the middle of the afternoon, the place was basically deserted.
Almost each individual square of this old rusted metal fence could be inspiration for one of my paintings. I don't know the significance of the graffiti; it's not as "artistic" or as funny as some other graffiti I've seen around. I think the lines and gestural strokes add something to the fence.
Many years ago, after I had started a new job working in a huge law firm, I walked into the room where all the corporate minute books were stored. There on the wall was a photograph of the side of an old bridge out in the country, with the graffiti "I (heart) MB," which in this case was supposed to be for "minute books." I noticed that one of my co-workers had taken the photograph and she sold it to me, because how could I pass up something like that with my initials? That photo stayed with me through numerous office moves, because at the big firm, if someone quit or got fired, there would be a massive shift in office space, jockeying for bigger and better, and it was taken very seriously. I really never even wanted to move, but I usually didn't have a choice. And I eventually ended up with a window office on the 27th floor with a view of the downtown airport and Kansas City, Kansas, until the whole big firm went belly up and I landed at the smaller firm, where I chose my office and stayed put for many years. Now the "I (heart) MB" photo resides at my son's house, because as Matt Buek, he too needs reminding that someone hearts him.