Monday, August 25, 2008


Chrome, She can see herself
In the shiny grill and the
Wire wheels of a red Chevelle
with four on the floor and the top down

Chrome, zippin' by on an Electra Glide
With dual tail pipes doin' 105 in the broad daylight
On a two-lane headin' outta town

Chrome, got her leg up high
on the bumper of my big black Mack truck
With a smoke stack pointed towards the sky
And mud flaps, you know the kind

Yes, it's true that we are members of the 'Cult of the Pink' as one snarky blogger referred to people involved in Breast Cancer fundraising activities. Oh well. We were not at the vanguard of the cause so we didn't get a vote. Which is probably a good thing. Imagine hundreds of thousands of people trying to reach consensus on which color best represents the cause they are supporting? It's much better that these things evolve organically.

I'm trying very very very hard here to stay on topic and not wander into exploration of colors and symbols and colors as symbols. For instance I find it most fascinating that after years of "better dead than red" being a rather right wing sentiment that somehow states with larger right wing populations are now "red states".

I don't understand the evolution of the yellow ribbon going from a Tony Orlando and Dawn song about a man being released from prison, to being a symbol of hostages, to being a symbol for supporting the troops.

Not to mention the evolution of the ribbon itself being the agreed upon symbol of support of anything and everything.

intriguing as the subject is - it is not our topic for today so we will leave it for now but shall return at our leisure.

The topic for today is chrome.
Not really, but this is how we're getting from point A to point B today so bear with me!

I mentioned that I did not get to vote on the internationally recognized color symbol for breast cancer awareness. (which, if you remember, is pink!)

If I had to pick a color to immerse myself in it would have been chrome. I know that chrome isn't technically a color. It isn't even a metal. Well, it is - but not really. Chromite is an ore that is mined to produce the element chromium. Chromium is added to steel (which is iron mixed with carbon) to produce stainless steel. Or you can take a hunk of steel, plate it with copper, then plate it with zinc, then plate it with chromium to achieve the chrome we are are referring to here.

So where would one go if they wanted to support breast cancer fundraising and yet preferred chrome to any of the nonmetallic colors, including pink?

I found out yesterday when the Pink Ribbon Tour held a rally before hitting the road on their tour across America. As I've mentioned here before the Pink Ribbon Tour is a phenomenal effort spearheaded by Dave Graybill, a firefighter. Mr. Graybill first came to my attention and won my heart when he convinced the folks at Maricopa Metals and others to build a giant polished steel ribbon. Is that not the prettiest thing?

So yesterday Mr. Graybill left Glendale on his way to Tucson and all points east.

He was escorted to Tucson by a swarm of motorcycles. I know when one thinks of Bikers' causes one usually thinks of their undying commitment to the POW/MIA issue or the many 'Toys for Tots' efforts at holidays but apparently many are also big supporters of breast cancer causes. Many of the bikers present yesterday were wearing the cool t-shirts from the pink ribbon tour. Not just the lady bikers and not just the black t-shirts.

The star of the event was the pink fire truck but one could not help but admire the acre of chromium plated bikes or the other big shiny firetrucks from all over the valley.

(And if I were not a happily married woman I probably would have noticed and appreciated the young, clean cut firefighters and the not so young and not so clean cut - but oh so wild and sexy riders.)

Which reminds me - I know in these enlightened times we are not supposed to value atavistic concepts like machismo. Fine. But if we were tempted to appreciate unbridled masculinity then we would definitely have to give the Air Force the "Most Macho Fire Truck on the Planet" award.

Which reminds me - yes I know the mudflaps that referenced in the song quoted at the beginning of the post do offend some people. I can definitely understand why.

And yet when two Arizona legislators last year introduced an amendment to a safety bill to outlaw 'offensive' or 'hateful' mudflaps including but not limited to these; I found myself suddenly defending the ubiquitous chrome bimbos.

Which leads me to a suggestion. Because chrome is not currently a recognizable color symbol of any particular group or cause or disease or corporation ~ ~ ~ ~ I propose that from here on out we accept Chrome as the international color of freedom!

. . .



I'm like totally behind you on this one, sister...following your chrome bumper all the way to Washington D.C.!

Linda D. in Seattle

Anonymous said...

would like to run these photos at glendale daily planet.
please contact and leave # or get mine off the planet site. I was ill an unable to get photos of the sendoff and we are doing a speical on him. photo credits will be givin.

thanks ed sharpe

venugopal said...

My cousin recommended this blog and she was totally right keep up the fantastic work!

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