Vermont man installs massive middle finger sculpture on lawn

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Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2018/12/11/vermont-man-installs-massive-m.html

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#2

My bid is $1 US dollar.

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#3

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#4

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#5

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#6

He built a big sign that says “fuck you” in sign language because he wasn’t allowed to build an 8000-square-foot workshop that doesn’t conform to building codes? I’m glad I don’t live near that guy.

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#7

Sometimes a Great Notion

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#8

Sounds like something other than building codes. He hired an engineer and a lawyer to help get his plans detailed enough to pass review, and the most recent denial was based on security lighting and not enough information about the use of the building. I got the intended use of the building just from reading the article. I don’t know but comes across as some very unhelpful, contrary town employees.

I like the sculpture. I’d be annoyed by the light pollution, though.

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#9

I thought this was a monument to the most intense street fight he’d ever seen.

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#10

The sculpture is too high. How am I supposed to sit and spin?

I am very disappointed. /s

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#11

I doubt we’re getting the whole story on the building code dispute. He probably has neighbors rightfully worried about the noise and pollution, as well as the legal hassles with mixed industrial/residential use. I’m not saying the town is in the right here, or that they aren’t stonewalling him, but just that I’m not going to jump to this guy’s defense before I know the whole story.

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#12

“Ceci n’est pas une fuck you.”

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#13

I guess he shouldn’t have written “FUCK YOU, that’s why” in the part of the form asking why the building code variance was needed.

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#14

Maybe he should have started with hiring an engineer?
And a lawyer at this stage is about as useful to the project as a condom vending machine at the Vatican.
As to the intended use of the building: the devil is in the details. I got an inkling from reading the article, but that’s judging a book from its cover.
Building to code is not that hard. You can even deviate from codes if there are good reasons to do so.

I am wildly speculating here, but 30 years in the field say that his plans were crap because he tried to save money in the planning stage. In other words, he didn’t get a competent architect/engineer because those want to get paid an adequate fee. When that didn’t work, he got someone for the ugly and thankless business of trying to fix something that was ill conceived from the get-go, if possible on the cheap as well. And without trying to work together with the Review Board, too - the “hiring a lawyer” part is a dead giveaway.

I’ve had projects like that. Sometimes you have little choice; or you only get the measure of your client too late. Well, I don’t have to do stuff like that anymore.

If you want to build or rebuild or repurpose something: do not cut corners at the planning stage. 80 to 90% of the total cost of the project are decided during the planning stage. Get someone competent, and listen to them.

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#15

If this was Florida man boingboing would have gentlemanned him about half a dozen times by now.

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#16

Not defending the guy, just clarifying based on some info from the article and my experience living in VT. Many (maybe most?) areas of the state don’t even require building to code. I agree with you that it’s not hard. It’s literally the least you can do without it being illegal in many areas of the country, so I’m always surprised when people state it as a brag almost, “built to code!!”

But I was looking at it from another side, too. Just this summer I wanted to get a roof built over an outside porch and some other work done (in Maine now). I’m a builder, and usually DIY, but I was really busy with my full-time job and other things and just wanted to pay someone to take care of it so I didn’t need to shovel snow off the porch again all winter. I hired the highest bidder, who then told me (after getting a hefty deposit) that it would be my job to get the permits, and then had a run around with him and the permit guy for a few months and finally just got my deposit back. I definitely could’ve been more diligent, but also sometimes you think you’re paying for a service that doesn’t deliver. Sometimes you think you’re getting someone competent and it doesn’t pan out.

Not saying I ever considered putting up a huge f-you sculpture, just that I can empathize with the sentiment to a degree. But I’m glad I’m not this guy’s neighbor.

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#18

That’s something you specify when you put out to tender, and double-check before you sign the contract.
And yeah, I learned that the hard way.

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#19

You and me both.

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#20

A similar thing happened in Melbourne, AU back in 2011 - you can see a picture of his lawn salute here. It’s interesting to note that he is actually giving himself the finger, and he also doesn’t seem to have a great grasp (heh) of anatomy.

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