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Thursday, February 17, 2011

Late-Night Sex Education and Art Critique on a San Francisco Streetcar

Posted on Thu, Feb 17, 2011 at 8:30 AM

Tweak a nipple, stop a train. Who knew? - KEITH BOWERS
  • Keith Bowers
  • Tweak a nipple, stop a train. Who knew?
Sociological mindfuck. It's among our favorite sports. On a MUNI streetcar last night going home we glanced over at the emergency procedure diagrams and damn near fell over laughing -- because for a couple of truly glorious seconds we thought this was the real diagram. (Without hesitation we reached for the camera.) We can't really call this "defacement" so we'll call it "enhancement." Rarely has a big black Sharpie been put to such good use.

But whoever the artist was, he (or she) didn't stop there.

  • Keith Bowers

This next item is a bit puzzling. Whatever the red-handled mechanism is, it's grown teeth and been put into motion. What's more, the resulting bonk was apparently hard enough to cause the recipient (who looks a lot like that "walk/don't walk" guy) to emit Saturn and a star from his  head.

  • Keith Bowers
This one's definitely an enhancement. "Now hear this." It's coherent, it's understandable -- unlike much of what comes over the streetcar P.A. system. However, we must point out a missed opportunity. We clearly see another nipple below the speaker.

Just to make sure that what we saw wasn't the work of some new lower-cost MUNI contractor and was, in fact, illegal, we went looking for a peace officer or security detail. What we found instead was this sign, which seemed pretty clear.

  • Keith Bowers
But if our public-transit artist is apprehended and charged, we really hope the judge will consider humor as a mitigating factor in sentencing.

Send your examples of hysterical or informative public art to

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