Now I don’t drink DeWar’s, usually opting for something off the bottom shelf, but I am fascinated by this advertisement. The image is confounding- a very black man, impeccably dressed and carrying a doctor’s bag with a posture and a stride that suggests he is fleeing the scene with a purpose- all beside the motto “do nothing, be nothing, say nothing, and you will avoid criticism” with added emphasis on ‘nothing’.
I don’t know what this advertisement is saying- the conflicting metaphors and images drawn from our collective conscious and slammed together on the side of a brick wall are confusing- but I do know that I want to try some DeWar’s. Coincidentally, this also seems to be the motto adopted by ASLA and its allies. They seem to be much more interested in selling advertisements and facilitating the creation of benign and banal landscapes everywhere.
Despite being the self-proclaimed voice of a profession that is inherently cool- make places people like, plant trees, design stuff outside, all without the bothersome panache of being “important”- ASLA is content with a place at the back table in Washington or your local developer’s dining room. Save a few practitioners, the collective contribution of the profession tends to be places like this
It is perhaps not the worst place in the neighborhood, but most of its charm is borrowed from the Hope and Anchor across the street where you can get meatloaf, mashed potatoes, and a beer for $15. And on Sunday night, they have a 7 foot tall transvestite lead karaoke night.
Don’t know if they sell DeWar’s, however.
(For an example of interesting and meaningful reuse of a blacktop in Red Hook, check out the Red Hook Farm).