Can you find this sci-fi short story?
March 20, 2013 12:13 PM   Subscribe

I've been looking for this particular short sci-fi story for several years and I am finally giving up on going solo. Help me find it, hive mind.

The story may have appeared in an anthology printed prior to 1983, it may have been in OMNI magazine, or it may have been neither of those, but those were my two biggest sources of reading material when I was a teenager, which is when I read the story.

The plot involves a graffiti artist who is something of a national counterculture hero, and a company that invented a special "non-stick" paint that was supposed to end his ability to paint on any buildings. There was a giant televised reveal of the new paint and when the cameras started rolling it turned out the artist had beaten them to the punch, painting a giant figure thumbing his nose, which was revealed as their paint slid off of his because he'd tagged the building with clear non-stick paint before they painted it.

At least one other person I have described this to remembers the story, so I am sure I'm not hallucinating.

Any ideas?
posted by mr_crash_davis to Writing & Language (5 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
I remember it also, I believe it was in one of the "big three" SF magazines (Analog, Asimov's or SF&F).
posted by 445supermag at 12:23 PM on March 20, 2013

Based on some googling, it might be "Soul of the City," by Michael Flynn. A Google Books Search pulls up "graffiti" on the pages listed in the contents for Analog Science Fiction/Science Fact (February 1989). It's reprinted in Flynn's The Nanotech Chronicles (1991). Brief description in this encyclopedia.
posted by steef at 1:15 PM on March 20, 2013 [1 favorite]

That is it indeed, steef. I recognize the cover of The Nanotech Chronicles.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 6:19 PM on March 20, 2013

God help me, I love a green tick and a grey bar.
posted by steef at 6:32 PM on March 20, 2013 [2 favorites]

Follow-up: I bought the book from Amazon ($4.00) and I now have it in my hot little hands.

Thanks again, steef.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 8:45 AM on March 22, 2013

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