Person of the Year

New York City. Early nineties. Converging on the Time Warner Building with my coworkers. My friends. Greenpeace. Someone scaled the building and unfurled a banner. It went off without a hitch. The point was not the disruption, but the ensuing conversation: the attention drawn to an issue–not us–the issue. Climate change. Nuclear waste. Whales. In this case: suggesting the nation’s largest publisher switch to environmentally-friendly printing practices, thus paving the way for smaller publishers. It was the same year they named Planet Earth Time Magazine’s Person of the Year. Later that night, the media would report a bunch of hippies made a spectacle of themselves for no apparent reason. Most of our colleagues up from the DC office, who’d spent the early morning schooling us in the do’s and don’ts of big public demonstrations, were arrested and detained. I talked to perplexed Time Warner employees on their way into work. I explained everything. I showed them my clipboard. If they wanted, I gave them stuff to read. I looked around at my coworkers. They were explaining everything, too. A cop asked me what I was doing. I told him. He digested my fervent spiel, with his poker face, and suggested I move a few feet over on the pavement, and I did; you don’t fuck with New York City cops. My father later told me, with a wry smirk, my grandmother keeps asking: when am I going to get ‘a real job’?

Published by msdeer

I am an interdisciplinary artist, slightly incognito here.

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