The King Is Dead! Long Live the King!

Friends bid adieu to eccentric Tempe street artist and club fixture

I stopped and sort of rapped with him a while, and I asked him if he had any portraits, and he said no, not that night, but when I saw him again a few days later, he did. I bought two.

The last time I saw Elvis--again, outside Long Wong's--I just walked past him and said, "What up, Elvis?" and he nodded. That was careless of me, in retrospect. So was my treatment of the two Elvis portraits I owned. One I lost in a breakup; the other was taped to a chalkboard in my kitchen until a party I had on a Saturday night, six days before he died. The next morning, I found it soaked in keg beer, adhered to yellow linoleum. I wondered how many hundreds of his works suffered a similar fate, then I scraped up all of it except one dark corner that's still pasted on my floor, showing half of Elvis' head and one of his slogans scribbled in whiteout: "Elvis the Cat Is Back."

I'll keep an eye out for him.

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