Monday, March 31, 2008

Movable Type

Just as any surface can become a canvas for a painter, any stationary or moving object may become the page for a writer.

Consider: cars!

Okay - so I admit that I have Google as my home page when I open Mozilla. I've even customized it to iGoogle, with a changeable banner across the top, the phase of the moon, a little calendar which I can change the background to match my mood, and an assortment of little boxes with information. Among the nuggets of news bytes and trivia I selected is a "how to" box. I don't know why, except that there are the occasional tidbits which inspire me to a rant of humans declining ability to think for themselves or a fascination of seeing how do they make those little toilet paper roll covers out of Readers Digest - like watching a car wreck and being unable to turn away. For example, right now I see "How to Make a Diaper Candy Holder Favor" in the box on the bottom of my screen. It took me a few minutes to even figure out what the title meant; I'm trying to restrain myself from even looking at that one, though I am assuming it has to do with baby showers (I hope).

One day I noticed a link in the box, "How To Create an Art Car". I've seen various art cars around town for several years; some mild and super funky and some outrageous and built up and out. One a little scary looking, unless you're into metallic evil clowns, Extremo the Clown. This was one of those train wreck moments and I had to take a look. Step one, according to WikiHow, is to select your car, with the warning that "if you're planning to drive your art car on a regular basis, you'll want one that is in good mechanical working order." And thus I've proved my point about catering to those who prefer not to think. Meow.

As I looked at a Cheshire cat and back to back VW bugs, I remembered reading about a local art car with a twist. "Trixie" I mentally shouted! And went in search through cyberspace. I don't know whether to say that Trixie is owned by, or companion to, gl, of Scarlet Star Studios, in Portland, Oregon.

Trixie is the dynamic poetry car about town. She sports giant magnetic poetry - like you see on the refrigerator, only bigger. gl even set Trixie up with her own blog page where you can see "trixie poetry" created by people who come across her. One of my favorites is the "neighborhood poetry program" at the top of the page.

Thinking of Trixie and her magnets I have a new meaning for "open mic poetry." Or maybe of poetry by and for the people.

If you could, where would you write your message? Or, if you were to write your message to the world on a car, what type of car would it be? Would you write a poem? Would it be an art car or a poetry car or a blending of the two? What would it say?

top left: Trixie at her second Burning Man
bottom right: one from the Trixie archives