One man’s quest to free the town from junky-looking campaign signs

Multiple campaign signs make this average lawn shine with class and charm.

Island Packet — Just throwing this out there, just spitballing, just doing a little brainstorming — because that’s what I do when it gets humid and heavy enough to make the birds literally bang on my window with their beaks and plead for death — but if we here in Beaufort County have rules, guidelines, codes, covenants, unspoken laws, unbreakable vows and sternly worded press releases regarding things that can and cannot besmirch our greenosphere, is there some reason we allow official-sounding political types to acne up our landscape with cheap-looking red-and-white-block-lettering campaigny signs?

I realize that the balance of this column will result in my sounding the very oldest I have in my life, except for that one time I handwrote a complaint letter to Andy Rooney because he made fun of Gene Krupa, but to that I say: “Hey, you kids, get off my lawn!” Because it stands to reason that if I cannot successfully locate a grocery mart after nightfall without knowing my precise longitude — which, thanks to my iPhone is no longer a problem but I’m still sniffly about this — if I can’t enjoy the calming glow of the average American streetlight, if I can’t go for a lousy evening run around my stately, verdant neighborhood without wearing a coal miner-style headlamp because of the constant threat of stepping on, around, or into an alligator in the pitch-blackness, I should not have to be reminded, upon venturing out for coffee, who is running for governor. (Incidentally, it’s blogger-affair lady and some other people.)



It’s simply a matter of fairness. For instance, I am pretty sure that planting a couple of decorative bushes in my front yard requires obtaining approval from a number of neighborhood boards, the state of South Carolina and I think whoever’s running BP now, if that person even exists. I was literally out repairing my mailbox shortly after buying our house when I was gripped with a brief and irreplaceable terror, thinking, holy cheese, am I using the right color nails? (This passed quickly, replaced by the shock I felt at actually being able to repair my own mailbox.)


Related, sort of



Moreover, one time, in 1998, due to a drawn-out and convoluted process which I will not go into now except to say that it caused me to return later and begin randomly throwing deer aphrodisiacs out of my car window, I was required to pay $5 for the privilege of returning to my own home. Which I did. Which I’m still really kind of upset about, because Vrabels are deeply, deeply cheap.

So if part of the allure here is the relatively unspoilt, or at least underspoilt, or at least in the case of the May River, beingspoiltbutslowlyenoughthatnoonereallynoticesapparently, howsabout we enact one of those fancy pieces of insta-legislation to make the candidates for state comptroller move their high-quality, classy signage to someplace less invasive, such as the Internet, or their own garages. Yes, I know that elections are important. Yes, I know that I’m not voting in this upcoming one, and neither are you, and if everyone’s all worked up about big government, they should be equally worked up about Big Not Yet Government.


About Jeff Vrabel

My writing has appeared in GQ, Men’s Health, Success, the Washington Post, the official, Indianapolis Monthly, Billboard, Modern Bride and more. View all posts by Jeff Vrabel

3 responses to “One man’s quest to free the town from junky-looking campaign signs

  • polywood

    This time humorous person is to serious and critical and using his aesthetic sense that is his inner beauty.


  • JJ

    I think polywood has hit the wrong-colored nail on the head here. He or she also has the makings of a fine SAT question: Humorous person is to serious and critical as …


  • wordofabe

    I am in complete agreement with you on this serious issue. I am thinking of outfitting my riding lawnmower with a special attachment for mulching political signs. I will also need to upgrade the engine in order to out-run the po-po.


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