Random or Planned?

Was defacing Blissfield’s Hathaway House’s newly redesigned billboard a random act of juvenile vandalism?

From what I can see, it looks like the vandal repeated a signature in quotation marks – “AR and an arrow or a stylized T” with a question mark immediately below. You can clearly see the typical “bubble style” graffiti letters that could read “SIB” or “SIS” or “SK” and the word “LOVE”. There’s more black colored graffiti on the rust colored strip underneath but, I couldn’t capture it in a pic from the highway.

We may never know who dunnit…unless somebody saw something as they passed by the billboard during the act of destruction. The billboard is located in Monroe County on Southbound US 23 just before exit 5. If you, or anyone you know has information regarding this incident, please contact the Blissfield Police Department (517) 486-4340.

I’ll add more to this post as I gather information.


I received this email from the billboard owners after making the offer to post the vandalized billboard and request information if anybody saw something. In the reply there were also a couple of answers to questions I had.


I spoke with our Sales Rep who handles Blissfield as a client and according to him Blissfield has been a client for years and years.  As for vandalism to this sign or any other of our signs in the area, this is the 1st incident.

 Thanks for your concern.

Oh, and I also found this…

Whiteford beaten by Blissfield

by Ron Montri , last modified September 03. 2010 11:31AM

OTTAWA LAKE — Maybe they should change the words on the billboard that stands along US-23 near the exit to Blissfield and Adrian.

The sign mentions the fine dining and shopping in Blissfield. but doesn’t include something else the village has become famous for — the success of the football program.
Blissfield scored on its first five possessions Thursday night and coasted to a 39-6 win over Whiteford.
“They might be the best team we play all year,’’ Whiteford coach Matt Garno said. “Blissfield is always at the top of the LCAA. Their program is where we want to be.’’

2nd Update:

CBS is the owner of the billboard and hold an insurance policy for vandalism, they are the party that will be paying to replace the vandalized billboard. We should expect to see the replacement within the first week of August.

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18 Responses to Random or Planned?

  1. Peter Baker says:

    What would make this random? Given the location of the billboard, and the fences and fields blocking access to it, whoever did it must’ve *really* wanted to deface it. Seems planned to me, or incited.

    • Robin says:

      The first thing that came to mind when I heard about it – I honestly thought it was a random juvenile defacement. Then I thought about it some more. I asked myself the possibility of it being random and came up with a few people that would surely want to plan something like this. Since discovering the motive, I was more convinced it was planned.

  2. Peter Baker says:

    You know the motive? You have suspects? Do tell. Seems like the only people that would surely want to plan something like this would be readers of this blog.

    • Robin says:

      Therein lies the motive Pete. Casting aspersion – to cultivate a lasting whirl of damaging imputations, false statements, or spiteful remarks against someone by performing an illegal act to which the most logical person would indeed be suspect. Hence, create suspicion and sour credibility to the one who holds an opposing opinion and/or the vehicle by which the opinion is relayed.

      In the Blog’s best month, there were almost 3,500 readers. The Blog’s worst month was the month it started, where the readers numbered 1,112, that’s a pretty large number of suspects by your deduction.

      Of course you know I can’t name people who I think might be responsible without proof. I’m hoping somebody saw something though. If it wasn’t random, It was dirty…and illegal. Do you know anybody that’s capable of a prank like that?

      • Peter Baker says:

        So you’re saying someone who liked the billboard, but doesn’t like you, defaced the billboard in order to make everyone think you did it? You realize how crazy that sounds right?

        • Robin says:

          It doesn’t sound as crazy as me turning into a criminal just because I voiced an opinion against the billboard. It certainly doesn’t sound as crazy as my opinion inspiring someone else to become a criminal either.

        • Peter Baker says:

          Yes it does. Way more crazy.

          I know you’d like some big conspiracy to confirm your suspicions that everyone in Blissfield is out to get you, but the far more likely situation is that you live in a small town, and attitude and intentions matter, so when you piss people off, question their motives, and disparage them on your blog, they’re not going to want to work with you anymore.

          It is a HUGE leap in logic to conclude that someone has so much anger towards you that they would deface a billboard they support, one that is simply trying to promote the town they love, in order to make people think you did it. Most likely, they’re simply going to ignore you, and try to avoid your spite.

          • Robin says:

            “I know you’d like some big conspiracy to confirm your suspicions that everyone in Blissfield is out to get you” – that’s quite a stretch Pete, almost like you read between the imaginary lines. I’ve never even intimated that everyone in Blissfield is out to get me, nor do I believe that. I do believe that attitude and intentions matter and if I piss people off that have arrogant entitlement attitudes and intend to capitalize on the public taxes, so be it. At the same time, I fail to understand how shining light and discussing things I feel are wrong is being spiteful.

        • Peter Baker says:

          It’s not *what* you’re doing, it’s *how* you’re doing it. There are ways to disagree with people without demonizing them.

  3. fairplayer says:

    President Kennedy “could” have been killed by Castro. He “could” have been killed by the mob. He “could” have been killed by the CIA, the extreme right, Johnson’s cronies, or a jealous husband for that matter. But, despite 48 years of controversy, umpteen books, and the creative licensing by Oliver Stone, it is most logical captain that Oswald did it and did it all by himself. No other motive than a small man wanting to be a big man. Jack Ruby wasn’t part of a greater conspiracy either. Just another small man wanting to be a big man. What does the Kennedy assassination have to do with a defaced billboard? Even though there is sufficient food for thought that certain people in this town may have certain motives and agendas, you’re way off-base Peter if you think for one second that you’re conspiracy theory has an ounce more validity to it than anyone else’s theory. And shame on you for your not-so-subtle finger-pointing excersize at the one person in this town who would have everything to lose and nothing to gain by involvement in this cowardly act. It sounds perfectly logical to me that a small person who wants to be a big person did this. I believe it was the stereotypical vandal that feels important after defacing a train car, an overpass, or an abandoned building. It was not this “artist’s” first time with a spray can and large canvas. His “style” is very reminiscent of a tank car mural I observed at the Penn-Central train yard years ago. A final admonition to conspiracy theorists everywhere: If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, and poops like a duck, its probably a duck

    • Peter Baker says:

      Where did I ever say I thought Robin did it? This was obviously done by someone with practice.

      Besides, if this is a forum for ideas, and Robin’s going to routinely point fingers, surely she can take some pointing back.

      • Robin says:

        I appreciate your input Pete, really I do. Correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t Fairplayer’s “your not-so-subtle finger-pointing exercise” mean you didn’t come right out and say it? Also, didn’t your next sentence admit that you were finger pointing?

        Anybody can do research about anything I’ve written and find it’s all factually based, I believe there is a big difference between pointing out the truth and finger pointing. Finger pointing, definition – the act of making explicit and often unfair accusations of blame.

    • Robin says:

      Good point Fairplayer….well taken. Thanks for the chuckle while reading your reply too! Although, I have a strong feeling that conspiracy theorists everywhere probably subscribe to other mantra’s like – Things are not always as they appear, or – Don’t believe anything you read and only half of what you see. While there may be different levels of logic applied to all of the above scenarios/theories, it’s important to point out that all are equally speculative at this point.

  4. Tran says:

    If you want a Blissfield conspiracy, here’s one: And it ties in with perhaps the greatest conspiracy theories of the 20th century.
    I give you, Blissfield’s connection to the Kennedy assasination:
    Seems really goofy, since they didn’t even get the name right (richmond vs richland arms).

    • Robin says:

      I don’t know what you consider is lame, but thanks for the interesting trivia Tran!

      • Logan says:

        While there is finger pointing, did anyone wonder if one of the CAVE people ran out of cave walls for drawings???

        • Robin says:

          Yet another theory, I guess that could have happened. Since cave drawings were for telling stories, maybe we should get some expert in the ancient art of cave drawings to decipher the message for us. This little caper could get expensive to solve.

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