REPRINT: Town Frowner
I have to work today and I don’t have a deep bench of new stuff, so enjoy (or not) this:
Times are tough and sometimes you have to be inventive to find your own niche. With this in mind here’s a new job I invented just for me, The Town Frowner. A brief explanation: I would be hired by the town of Red Bank (where I live and work) to walk around town*. Wherever there was new construction or building improvements I would go and stand in front of the building in question, wearing a ceremonial uniform (based on those worn by European royalty; a crown,ermine cape and bejeweled scepter) and depending on my mood, either smile or frown. A smile would mean “good job, carry on” and I’d add a small positive comment like “That bird feeder looks like a tiny version of your house, well done” or “Kudos, those gargoyles are sufficiently gruesome”. Of course a frown would be a death knell for the project and all work would stop. A short derisive comment would be added as well, for example “ Hold up there buddy, a two car garage?! Who do you think you are Donald Trump?”, or “What’s with the new lawn? You’re setting a bad example for us plain folks, just paint the dirt green like the pilgrims did.” or “Two dogs!?! What do think this is a zoo?” Ok, to be honest I’ve been doing the Town Frowner thing on a freelance basis for awhile now and I’ve actually said those things to various townsfolk. Unfortunately most people don’t take my criticism in the spirit it was given and I’ve heard it all from my so-called neighbors; “nut job”, “Get off my property”, “kook”, “Is that my veal?”, “crazy person”, “put on some pants”. I’ve also been pelted with rocks and garbage, but I’m not giving up. I think if I was made official Town Frowner incidents of punching and insulting me would go down and I wouldn’t be arrested as much. Clearly a win, win situation. Your move Red Bank.
*If it was inclement weather I would have a horse drawn carriage at my disposal