I believe in expression, no matter how hazardous it might be. Far too often in today’s society people allow themselves to become silent. It is as if they have supressed their true feelings about the condition of our culture and our society to fit in with the norm. For fear of being looked upon negatively or persecution some have pushed their passions away for so long that they’ve lerarned to live comfortably in such a state. It is a state of safety, passionless bliss. Too meek to express their discontent, some cease to express at all. Too afraid to stand up for what they believe, some cease to believe at all. Each day I wander through my surroundings, a vast blanket of beings, numb, numbed by their fear numbed by their apathy. Often overwhelmed and overcome by our society’s indifference, I embark to fight the clutch of apathy’s cold numb hands.
Turning down an empty Northern California Highway, some hours past sunset, I am intoxicated by anticipation . Two backpacks filled with twenty-some aerosol paint cans, a camera, myself and my artistically inclined friend, Roberto, stuff the single cab of my ’84 Toyota truck. I feel the thud of train tracks beneath my tires a quarter mile down the highway and swiftly turn right. Each of us is mostly speechless as we walk from the truck towards a seemingly endless line of towering steel canvas. We move along the track, searching for the perfect car. The metal of the train bends as the temperature drops, causing the faint sound of steel sheets creaking within the cars. Admiring the history of their weathered masses, I foolishly plow into a line of loose barbed wire. Roberto waits ahead, “This one Andy,” with a grin like a young Who on Christmas Eve he points to an entirely untouched car. “Chou gat the fat caps?” Roberto delicatley whispers. Nodding my head, I loosen my right shoulder out from under my backpack strap, swinging it around my chest and dropping it to the desert dust below. The moon’s blood amber haze gently illuminates the sagebrush scattered landscape as we go to work. It is this setting in which I feel most alive. It is in this setting where I cast off the burdens of society, where I bleed creation and defiance to cut away from life’s painfully numbing effects. Descending deeper into the night, I shake the metal bullet inside a 12 oz. can of paint and remember what it means to be free.
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