Lame Adventure 464: The Power of Suggestion Written in Chalk

I was walking east along West 75th Street en route to my neighborhood market for organic kale and a carrot when I encountered a message on the sidewalk:

Good idea!

Good idea!

At that moment, my destiny seemed perfectly in line with cliché-addled sidewalk sentiment: get the kale and the carrot. Which is exactly what I did. As I was about to take my place in the supermarket check out line, a woman around fifty smiled at me in a friendly way. Then she cut in front of me. Possibly the friendly smile was a ruse to offset her stealing my place in line. Possibly she was thinking:

Place stealer: I can take this pushover.

Because I was only holding a bunch of leafy greens and a single root vegetable, as opposed to a mallet and a spear, I knew on the scale of intimidation factor with one being Caspar Milquetoast and ten, Charles Manson, I likely measured in the negative numbers. So, I didn’t bother arguing. Instead, I was thinking about fulfilling my destiny. Since I’ve held off doing this for the better part of fifty-six years, I’m going to take off about a month to work on fulfilling mine, or to catch up on power sleeping, whichever comes to me first. Meet me back here in June.

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72 responses to “Lame Adventure 464: The Power of Suggestion Written in Chalk

  1. May the Force be with you, Grasshopper. I know, that’s probably not right. But, you get the idea. When you come to a fork in the road, take it.

    See you later…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Have a good break 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. “Chase the bees and pluck the flowers,
    In the merry, merry month of May”

    See you in June

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Have a great break and may the Kale be with you.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Enjoy your break, V. See you soon. Oh, and I see you were Freshly Pressed for that last post about Patty Smith. Congrats. I can certainly understand the need for a bloggy break after on of those!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Getting Freshly Pressed is always both an honor as well as a complete surprise, Cathy. I have a lot going on in the month ahead. Rather than degrade my site with half-ass posts, I decided to stay full-assed and just take the month off. It’s been a few years since I took my last hiatus.

      Like

  6. May your kale purchasing activities be plenty…
    Speaking of kale, overheard on NPR a few weeks ago: Can you guess what single entity was the largest purchaser of kale prior to the popularity explosion of kale in the last 10 years?
    Since you’ll be gone for a month….It was Pizza Hut, to garnish the salad bar.(!)

    Liked by 2 people

    • Jeremy, my sister, Dovima, thinks that using kale as garnish, and only as garnish, is the completely right idea. She HATES kale! She cannot believe that not only do I eat it almost daily, but that I actually like it. Whenever I mention it to her, she emits a monosyllabic sound that could easily double as the death throes of an impaled antelope.

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  7. We’ll miss you! Whatever you do during your time off, have a kale of a good time. 🙂

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  8. I’ll miss you! Breaks are good. I may take one, too. I’m feeling a bit…I don’t even know the word to use. See, I need one. All the best. May the force be with you. Enjoy your carrots and kale.

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  9. Fulfill your destiny!

    I LOVE random stuff written on sidewalks or other objects. A friend of mine posted a picture on Facebook where somebody had plastered a sticker of Mickey Mouse next to the caption “They hate us for our freedom.”

    In Tacoma, Washington one time, I saw painted along a freeway overpass “SLEEP AMERICA SLEEP.” Delightfully creepy.

    There was a semi-abandoned schoolhouse near where I lived as a teenager, and kids would occasionally write stuff on there. I recall that one day the word “PUSSY” showed up–and even then I wondered why a person would write that word–or any single context-less word–on a building. It fascinates me still. Sometime later someone else added YUM! underneath it.

    A few years later (when I was too old to be engaging in this kind of foolishness) I actually added my own cryptic single word warning. This was back when people were really stressing about satanic cults & the like, so I thought writing the word “DEVIL” would give people something to talk about.

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    • Writing “DEVIL” was a great one, Smak! I learned “fuck” from sidewalk graffiti on Junipero Serra Boulevard in San Francisco. I was about seven and taking a Sunday stroll with my dad. I saw it, read it and said aloud, “Fuck.” My dad calmly advised, “Don’t say that word.” I didn’t know what it meant but I knew it was taboo.

      As for loving random stuff written on sidewalks, whoever wrote “Fulfill your destiny” has been posting “chalk talk” all over the sidewalks on the Upper West Side. I considered writing a post about that, but I need to take this hiatus right now. That can be another post for another time, but when I return, I’m sure I’ll encounter other Lame Adventures that will become other posts. I think you have noticed that I have a knack for having Lame Adventures wherever I go.

      Like

  10. Off to work on that Celebrity Nasal Photo Project I assume. There are a lot of famous noses in New York and every one of them deserves to be seen it all it’s gory . . . I mean glory. Getting the proper angle may be a little difficult, but perhaps Milton will help by pointing to the sky and screaming, “Look, it’s The Lame Adventures Drone.”
    If you’re still hungry for greens, I can ship some poke salad to the Grind. I assure you it’s 100% natural and organic or my name isn’t Solomon Barminski.

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  11. Holy Crap! I can’t believe it! I just finish making a bunch of sidewalk inspiration wow. Glad it inspired you. Well definitely take a break! I’ll miss your adventures and high five you when you get back. Read on the comments that you were Freshly Pressed! Duuuuuude congrats on that!!!! Awesome way to dive into a break. Congrats! Talk to you soon, buddy.

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    • Thanks Guat! I hope I don’t lose too much of my following during my month off, but I figure my seven core dedicated followers will stick around. Those chalk sayings are all over Manhattan’s Upper West Side. You sure get around!

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Enjoy the break, sweetpea! I’m back in the (blogging) fold, so I’ll read a post a day while you’re gone and be all caught up here when you return in June! xoxox

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  13. I’ll miss reading your blog for the next month.

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  14. V, you’ll be so missed but time off is needed. Go on your next adventure, brave one and I’ll see you back here soon. Carpe diem, chickie.

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  15. I laughed out loud! I can imagine she was holding far more fierce items, such as a rutabaga or a cake thermometer…her smile let her win a spot ahead of you, but you come out the real winner by fulfilling your destiny!
    Hope to read you before June though? Who will keep us laughing with NYC life?
    *Lia

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  16. Good for you. Seems the synergy with my post is perfect timing (although this one was first). Hang in there … and get after it!

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  17. Enjoy your month! I’ve cut back too. I’ve got too many writing projects to focus on, but it’s exciting. I just returned from a writer’s conference. My brain is full of new ideas.
    Congrats on your FP!!! Is this your third or fourth?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Susie. Lately, it has been quite a challenge to juggle working full time with blogging, outside writing projects and my heavy diet of volunteer ushering and theater-going with Milton. It’s been a few years since I took a break, but I hope to return to writing this site in June. I do enjoy it. As for getting Freshly Pressed, thank you. It’s always such a surprise. This is my fourth time, but the first one was so long ago, it was before badges, or even email notification that it was coming. And there was quite a desert between that first post I had FP’ed and the next, almost three years and 200 posts later. Moral of story: it can happen at any time.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Nice font on that chalk art! This town is chocked-full of creatives.

    No offence, but kale + carrot = wretch.

    What?! You can’t bag out! Fuck that! I just recently discovered this place. How dare you. Who can I blather to about theater? Who else cares? Nobody, that’s who. For instance:

    Last night someone GAVE me a ticket to the Actor’s Fund benefit stage reading at the Friedman. Patti LuPone and Bobby Cannavale starred in Tennessee Williams’s The Rose Tattoo. It was a full cast, directed by Dough Hughes. Very, very, funny. I wish they’d do a full-blown production with the same cast. This Friday: Grounded with another one of my pretend girlfriends, Anne Hathaway.

    Do you see? Where else can I leave a comment like that? You can’t leave. You simply can’t.

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    • The Upper West Side’s sidewalks are covered with trite sentiment written in that font in chalk. Reading a steady diet of that schmaltz without a Rolaids chaser is a health hazard.

      No offense taken with your kale + carrot equation; my sister completely agrees with your calculation.

      Rest assured that this isn’t my farewell to blogging post. I am simply taking the month of May off to pursue what I need to pursue. I intend to be back in June, probably before the Tony awards, or maybe after. What did you think of the Tony nominations? Milton and I thought that they were pretty decent. Meanwhile, you might enjoy an LA I wrote 150 lames ago: http://wp.me/pMku1-1yZ Or not. I’m not the type who shills ancient posts, but that one was a production.

      That is so cool you attended that performance of The Rose Tattoo and for free, better yet! I wish they’d do a full blown production of that, too. Milton and I are seeing Grounded next week. We saw An American in Paris over the weekend from the rafters. That show with it’s brilliant George Gershwin score was ’s wonderful, ‘s marvelous. It’s no surprise that it got 12 Tony award nominations today. We’re seeing Fun Home in June, but I was very impressed when I saw it off-Broadway in 2013. It also got a dozen Tony award nominations. Do you intend to see either? I know that musicals are not exactly your thing, but both of those are terrific. The NYT’s Charles Isherwood, who I usually loathe, gave Paris a rave and called it dance-drunk. He was right about that. The dancing, like the overall production, is brilliant.

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  19. Wax on. Wax off. During your month away, you can find your destiny by studying with Mr. Miyagi and then find that place stealer and send her to the back of the line.

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  20. I just found you this year. I will do the archives to keep me entertained. Good for you taking time off. Your blog is so funny to read. You must be in great condition with that food source.

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    • Awwwwwwww, thanks Tom! At this stage in my decrepitude, nothing about my condition would be considered great, but I am grateful to still be able to multi-task: draw breath while standing relatively upright.

      Like

  21. I just stumbled on your blog and it is HILARIOUS! You are awesome 🙂
    Thanks for sharing your Lame Adventures with the world!

    Like

    • You’re welcome, Sarah, and thanks for taking the time to to read and write this kind comment. I am on hiatus for the month of May. That means that I will be keeping all of my LA’s to myself until I’m back in June, after I’ve fulfilled my destiny of course.

      Liked by 1 person

  22. I know this one, to the depths of my soul. Hard to argue with sidewalk memes you know.

    Like

  23. Great that you are taking time off! i’m impressed that you actually made a decision to do so ahead of time. I keep taking a month between posts – not intentionally! Perhaps I should rethink my approach. Enjoy your month. It will fly by I can assure you.

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    • Thanks Terri! I’ve invested so much time and energy into writing this site and building my following, I can’t just disappear from it. I miss it, but I have so much going on right now, I don’t have time to write the level of posts I like. Hopefully, next month I can resume publishing posts. As long as Kush, your site’s rock star, is cool with you being MIA from the blogosphere, I suppose it’s okay.

      Liked by 1 person

  24. Enjoy May and I’m excited to hear about your destiny and all that when you get back.

    Like

  25. I hope the change that that woman received from the cashier contained the one nickel that was covered in gonorrhea. Just sayin’…

    Liked by 1 person

  26. I hope you are enjoying your month off. I miss you. But I get it.
    That’s all.

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  27. I’ve always found that a well-timed smile is the ideal prerequisite for pilfering a person’s spot in line. The contradiction of Outwardly Friendly Pedestrian versus Conniving Spot Absconder stuns the line-occupier, allowing the pilferer to slip into place and escape confrontation.

    I’ve fallen prey to this horrific tactic myself, and I lacked neither the intestinal fortitude nor the kale to do anything about it. A sad day indeed.

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  28. Just popping in to see if you are back yet – I’ve missed your witty comments on my blog!

    Liked by 1 person

  29. i was just thinking about you (since it is june already) and then, as i was reading the comments over at brother exile’s place, bamm, it was YOU! glad to see you back again, sweetpea! drop by if you get a chance, the husband, aka the MITM, did a few guest posts. 🙂 xoxox

    Like

    • Hey Savannah, I visited and commented, but it’s not clear to me if my comment will show up. I have a history of headache with commenting on blogspot blogs. It’s so complicated! I’ll resume writing my site by month’s end (famous last words). Thanks for visiting!

      Liked by 1 person

  30. Yoo hoo, anybody home? Just stopping by to say hello. Miss you. We’ve left the light on for you. 😦

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  31. Gosh, V, hope your destiny is going well. I know what it feels like to need a break, regardless of the root vegetables involved. I’m TRYING to get back into blogging, as I’m going on a road trip with my 88-year-old Godmother for two months. And it will be TOOOOO good not to write about! Former Flamenco dancer, a 37-foot RV, and one cat named Pepe le Mew–kid you not. At any rate we will be in Manhattan at the very end of July/1st week of August and would love to see you. I’ll know more one we get on the road. I leave a week from tomorrow. Hope you are celebrating today!!!! What a day! Can’t help but think about you with regard to marriage equality.
    Hugs from Ecuador,
    Kathy

    Like

    • Hey Kathy!

      Great to hear from you. That road trip sounds like it’s going to be quite a wild ride. I’ll be in touch.

      Friday sure was a great day in history for marriage equality.

      Hugs from NYC,
      V

      Like

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