I don’t always pay attention to the billboards on I-290, usually because I’m perpetually running late for work.
But on Sunday mornings, my husband drives us to church, so I get to look around a bit more than usual.
If I were Jeff Barnard, I would have taken a picture of the billboard on the westbound side, near the 146 exit, almost exactly above where the Heidi’s Hippie Hideaway billboard once displayed a lavender bus on the side of a three-decker. But I can’t take pictures and drive at the same time.
There’s a billboard for some sort of “ultimate return” that will yield 15%, which one would think no one would respond to in a post-Bernie Madoff world. But the billboard has been up there a while, and so — either out of laziness or because there are those who do respond to this sort of wild impossibility — it has remained, in all its hot pink glory.
So, on one little stretch of 290, in the course of a few years, there have been two different insights into the soft underbelly of Worcester. One was a kinder, gentler (or at least, quirkier) view that repurposed a sign advertising for bus drivers into a hippie vision. The other is a view of people who prey on others’ desperation in an extraordinarily difficult time.
I wonder what insight into the city of Worcester will next be displayed on those billboards.