Sunday, May 26, 2019
Wore my blue MAGA hat today on the ferry to Manhattan, then on the ferry to Ft. Tilden in order to finish repainting my flag that was vandalized last year:
Eight years ago, for the tenth anniversary of the attacks on the World Trade Center, I painted an American flag on one of the bunkers by the beach to honor the victims of 9-11. It has endured numerous desecrations since then, and I have always repainted them. It was especially important that I finish repairing the latest desecrations before Memorial Day.
Yesterday I repainted the stripes in broad daylight in the late morning and received too much solar radiation, and perhaps too much attention from passersby because there was an unusually heavy police presence near the flag all afternoon. Maybe someone who saw me painting thought that I was defacing the flag and reported me to the police.
In any case, I was unable to finish the repairs yesterday, and today had no choice but to wait until the early evening rain had stopped, giving me only a small window of opportunity before complete darkness set in. I was painting away furiously when I heard a voice behind me say, “I’m glad the flag is being fixed. The last time I was here I noticed that someone had sprayed it.” Turns out the guy was from the Dominican Republic and had always admired the flag during the seven years that he had been coming to the beach at Ft. Tilden. He had nothing but scorn and disdain for the vandals, and it was gratifying to hear his appreciation for what I was doing because I usually work in complete anonymity.
The light was fading fast, so I only had time to quickly paint over the worst defacements, leaving remnants of turquoise, orange, and purple peeking out from around the edges of the stars, but the flag now looks beautiful from a distance:
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