Monday, July 20, 2009

Obamanation!


Talk about branding! Artist Jorge Rodriguez Gerada created the above massive sand portrait of the POTUS. Gerada described it as: "The work’s grand scale (1 hectare / 2.5 acres) embodies the immense sense of hope felt by Barack Obama’s supporters and raises a mirror to reflect the source of that hope. Obama has awakened an enormous yearning for change that runs deep beneath decades of disaffection with the political establishment."

With all of these portraits popping up everywhere, I'm having an enormous yearning of my own, one for change- away from Obamanation! Look, don't get me wrong, my annoyance has nothing to do with politics. It's really just the irritation of seeing the Prez's visage seemingly everywhere. Last week, K and I were driving to pick up some jerk chicken (we heart Caribbean food) and had to drive through a certain area of a particular city that can be rightfully called "Dirty Jerz". We were stopped at a light (with windows rolled up and doors locked... look, you'd go through the trouble, too if you tasted some of that chicken) when my eyes wandered over to the eighth liquor store in as many blocks. Lol, now you know you're in the hood when you're surrounded by storefront churches, bodegas, bail bond places and liquor stores... but I digress... so what caught my eye about this place was not the Corona poster, but the giant, life-size Barack Obama cut-out that stood stoically... next to the Coors Light sign. What in the world was he doing in there???

I have seen him in many other places. Hanging in the Caribbean restaurant, next to a picture of Bolt, the Jamaican Olympian. On calendars with Michelle, Malia and Sasha, all big smiles. On prayer placards (which is weird to me). On t-shirts, mugs and dolls. On coins, plates, buttons and posters. And then during the 4th of July weekend, I saw this frightening ad:



Eww... nothing like making a plastic bust of the President sprout a leafy afro to show your civic pride.

But anyway, in all honesty, I'm sick of seeing Obama's face. It's like in 2003 when Beyonce released her first solo album. As it rocketed up the Billboard charts, she was everywhere. Pushing hair dye. Blowing lipsticked kisses at the camera for Revlon. And I got sick of her, too. Not necessarily her album, but mainly her face. It happened when Tomkat got together in 2005. The stalkerazzi had their every moves recorded. They were plastered on every tabloid cover. I wanted to hurl. Brangelina, Paris and Britney...all of them at certain points this decade have made me rush for the Pepto.

The problem with all the hoopla surrounding President Obama is that despite his popularity, his primary role is in the realm of politics, not as a pop icon. So I find myself flipping the channel when he's talking about why the economy is still in shambles or his new health care initiatives, which is a real shame. But for now, as shallow as it might be, I'm going to try to avoid Obama. Which is going to be pretty hard since I'd like a nice bottle of white wine with the chicken I'm planning to make for dinner tonight... and you never know where he might pop up.

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