It’s a cold, bleary day on Brown’s campus. The wind whips through the trees, the weak sun struggles to peek through the clouds. On the Main Green, the fake tree with the rock statue stands alone. Always alone.
Such is the life of most statues at Brown now, since Blueno’s fat blue ass was suddenly dropped on the lawn in front of Ashamu. His presence was controversial, divisive, and, above all, ominous. Whether you love or hate Blueno, we cannot deny his enormous influence. He has overshadowed the tin foil children statues, the fake tree statue, and even the anal beads statue. Where is the justice?
The Rib has been able to get exclusive interviews with many of the statues that have felt the brunt of Blueno’s presence.
On the morning of Thursday, February 9th, I woke up at the crack of dawn and trekked over to the Main Green to speak with the Fake Tree with rock statue.
Me: Thank you for meeting with me today. First thing I wanted to ask is: how does it feel to be a statue on Brown University’s campus? Especially such a new one?
Fake Tree: It’s pretty hard, to be honest. I heard that Brown University students were supposed to be smart, but at least five times a day, you’ll get a group of students that passes by and says, “Damn, I always forget that that statue isn’t actually a tree.” It’s hurtful, you know? You work hard at something, and these kids don’t even care enough to remember who you really are. But maybe it’s me? Maybe I’m too realistic? I don’t know.
Me: Blueno has sparked a lot of controversy on campus. How do you feel about his presence?
At this point, the Fake Tree pauses to take a drag of his cigarette and stare out across the lawn of the main green.
Fake Tree: Blueno and I actually used to be really good friends. Did you know that?
Me: No, I didn’t.
Fake tree: Yeah. Used to be real close. Until we both came here and, well, most students didn’t notice me. But it’s hard not to notice a giant blue bear, you know? Everyone was obsessed with him. Was I jealous? Sure, a little. But more than that, it was the way Blueno changed after that. He got snooty, he ignored the rest of us statues, he didn’t come to any of our parties or brunches. It’s like he’s a total stranger.
I concluded my interview with Fake Tree as it seemed like he was close to tears. I tread over to the Anal Bead Fountain, one of the veteran statues of Brown’s campus.
Anal Bead Fountain: Yeah, I heard about that guy Blueno. Nothing but trouble the moment he stepped on campus. I used to be the big shot around here, ya know? I have a legacy to uphold. People used to come from all over campus and show their friends the famed anal bead statue.
Me: Do you find you have less traffic passing through now that Blueno is getting all the attention?
Anal Bead Fountain: You bet your ass I do. Saturday nights used to be FILLED with drunk giggling people, I tell you. Now, pfft. Everyone’s trying to get wasted and climb Blueno. I ask you, would you rather climb a fountain that looks like a sex toy or a giant bear?
Me: Sex toy fountain. No question about it.
Anal Bead Fountain: Right?!
The Anal Bead Fountain seemed to be holding his own about Blueno although I’m positive it’s only a facade, a mask to hide the pain and grief he feels. However, I must move on.
I leave to my final interviewees, the Tin Foil Statue Children. I figured this would go pleasantly. They always seemed to be a happy and optimistic bunch.
But alas, I found that I was severely mistaken. I struggled to conduct the interview as they spent the majority of the time weeping openly and loudly.
Me: So, I was wondering if I can have some general first impressions of the Blueno–
Tin Foil Children: WE-WE-WE HATE BLUENO!!!! –sobbing, crying–
Me: Oh, okay. Well, can you describe to me how your foot traffic has decreased since the implementation of Blueno?
Tin Foil Children: BLUENO SUCKS, BOO BLUENO. -unrelenting wailing–
Me: Okay, okay. Noted. How have you been dealing with this lack of love and validation?
Tin Foil Children: DIE BLUENO!!!!!
Needless to say, this seemed like all I was going to get from the Tin Foil Children. Still, I think it establishes how extreme the reaction has been to Blueno’s presence on campus. Will these statues ever find justice? Will they ever find the love and validation they are so desperately searching for? Only time will tell. But now, at the height of winter, at the brink of a dastardly snowstorm, the future looks bleak.
Images via, via Nicole Martinez, and via Annie Warner.Tags: blue sculpture at brown, brown, interview
Categorized in: On "The Hill"