One of the best forms of expression is dead…almost…
As I was driving in western Mass a parked truck caught my eye as I passed. All in all, it was pretty much your normal run-of-the-mill every day, use it for whatever you need to, kind of truck. The real interesting thing that stood out about this truck over every other truck that I didn’t notice on the drive was this truck’s tailgate was covered in bumper stickers. All shapes and sizes of bumper stickers strategically placed, each telling a story of a place, an event, an organization, a lifestyle. From a distance, it was a thing of lost beauty.
I grew up in the ’60s and 70’s when bumper stickers stood for something. They were cool and even ok to put on your brand-new car or to help hold the old car together. Bumper stickers proudly displayed your favorite radio station, paying homage to the B’s, Sox, C’s, or Pats. Some conveyed important info like you had a dirty diaper on board along with a tiny human. Many humble owners admitted their car looked like it did because it fell off the highest mountain in New England.
As I passed by that parked truck adorned with stickers, I was curious about what places, what events, what organizations…what is this truck’s owner all about. I drove for about a mile until my curiosity grabbed the wheel and turned me around. As I was heading back towards the truck’s location, I got a bit excited thinking about what I will find. I hope it isn’t a bunch of political BS. That would be disappointing I thought. That would kill any natural buzz I was experiencing since I first spotted the artwork during my first drive-by.
As I parked and walked towards the truck’s tailgate it quickly became clear to me that the owner of this truck is someone that loves the outdoors. It didn’t take much investigative reporting to figure that out with the “Brake for Moose” and the “Yeti” stickers catching my eye first. A quick scan from left to right there were lots of ski area stickers…Okemo, Stowe, Sunday River, and Pico. The owner proudly displayed their love of Cape Cod with the Martha Vineyard Whale and the “Wicked Pissah Bumpah Stickah” also representing the island. Then I saw it…the radio station bumper sticker. This one I would also proudly display as I have spent countless hours listening to WMVY. A station once housed and transmitted from Martha’s Vineyard and is now internet-based. This sticker has seen some miles and was awarded to thank those that gave a donation to keep the station on the air. The owner of this truck also believes in God, saving Manatees, supporting his local farmer and his town’s high school team.
Whoever owns this truck is someone I would be friends with. It was the best part of my day learning a little about someone I will never meet but someone I still got to know through the lost form of expression…the bumpah stickah.