I'm Blue

Mary Katharine Ham
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Posted: Mar 16, 2006 8:42 AM

I have uncovered a sinister plot.

As I've mentioned, I was in Austin this week. Cool city-- one of those great, Southern college towns where be-baseball-capped frat guys and be-dreaded hippies mostly-happily coexist, though usually at different bars. You have to love a town where you can get great sushi and great barbecue within the same city block, and hear live music at both restaurants. A town where you can have a national championship football team and get an free-range, dolphin-friendly organic cotton t-shirt commemorating the event. Great places, those. Reminded me of Athens, but bigger.

But that brings me to the subject of organic t-shirts-- a subject, which I think I can say with a fair amount of confidence has never come up on this blog before. I bought a very cute t-shirt at SXSW, commemorating that event. It's blue with red writing. It's organic cotton, though I didn't know that until it had been rung up for me. Not that I object to organic cotton, per se; it's just that organic apparently comes from the Latin word meaning "jack up the price 12 bucks." So, that was my first issue with organic, but I bought the t-shirt anyway. I was being open-minded, you see?

Yesterday, I wore the t-shirt. It's cuteness was unabated by its organicity (pretty sure that's a real word; just roll with it). I was pleased. Until this morning.

In the process of getting ready for work, I discovered that I am now blue. Like, my skin is blue. The cute t-shirt got its cute, blue color all frickin' over me. At first, I thought I had managed to bruise myself in some fantastic fashion--which, frankly, was both frightening and impressive-- but no. Apparently, organic t-shirts aren't so color-fast as red-state t-shirts generally are. Glad I found out before I washed the rest of my clothes with this seemingly innocuous garment.

But here's the sinister plot alluded to before. I'm a red-state girl who went to a very blue conference in a very blue town. I came away blue-- literally, blue. And, I can't seem to wash it all off.

My guess is the t-shirt vendor spotted me a mile away and decided then and there to create a blue Republican. He thought it would be clever, funny, artistic, and politically aware. Suddenly he wasn't just a t-shirt vendor anymore. He was an artisan. Drum circles formed at the very mention of his name. He's opening his first exhibit at a coffeehouse in Austin this weekend. It features a blue t-shirt like the one I bought, a copy of this blog post, and George W. Bush with a Hitler mustache just for good measure.

He is now widely acclaimed on the coffeehouse circuit of Austin and is currently seeking NEA funding for a whole series entitled "Blue Republican."

Well, maybe it's not all that sinister. Better to have him dyeing Republicans than registering Democrats, huh? Somebody get that man a grant!

Now, can someone please tell me how to get this stuff off me? It comes off, right? Mark from Decision '08 lives in Austin (though I realized that only after I had left. Doh!). Any tips, Mark? Anyone?