Tuesday, September 18, 2012
Hot new item: “I Survived Aerial Spraying” T-shirt
Is it too early to have a little fun with West Nile?
DALLAS From the Dallas graphic designer behind the Obey Dirk T-shirts comes “I Survived Aerial Spraying 2012,” a tongue-in-cheek reference to the public’s adverse reaction over mosquito spraying this summer to combat the spread of West Nile virus.
Planes in several cities sprayed hundreds of thousands of acres in several counties with Duet, a substance that some people thought could be unsafe for people, pets, and even plants. Spraying was utilized during the nation's worst outbreak of West Nile virus at the time, though some cities opted out of the plan.
“Everybody on Facebook was talking about it, constantly,” said Curtis Black, a Dallas resident who designs T-shirts for a living. “I just made light of it.”
The shirts went on sale on Monday afternoon.
A child of the ‘70s in Kansas, Black said he used to ride his bike behind trucks fogging his neighborhood to kill mosquitos that potentially carried viruses. “I survived it in the ‘70s, I survived it now,” he joked. “I have all my functioning fingers and toes.”
The shirts give the names of several areas sprayed – Highland Park, Garland, Richardson, and Lakewood, for instance. They cost $24.54 and are available online at RedBubble, a free site where artists can post their designs.
“My core goal is to put a shirt out there, and I don’t want to invest any money into it. I don’t want to advertise it, I’m not going to take off a weekday and sell them on the street,” Black said. His best-selling T-shirt is Cat Flag, a silly picture of four cats in reference to the logo of the punk rock band Black Flag.
“You never know what’s going to be famous or popular,” Black said.
Shannon Sutlief contributed to this story.