Brooklyn-based artist Joseph Arthur experienced an unlucky streak when his 2003 Dodge Van mysteriously disappeared from the very place he had parked it. But when he discovered that someone else was holding it ransom, Arthur began working on a long drawn out scheme to retrieve it.
Arts Beat revealed the singer-songwriters’ van had been towed by Brooklyn city council – an instruction drafted by law after $US 361 of unpaid parking tickets finally broke the back of repossession officers.
The singer then faced a lengthy battle to retrieve his vehicle, which contained priceless relics including vintage amplifers and a collection of hand painted tarot cards, an ordeal he has since chronicled in a brand new song and video appropriately titled ‘Where Is My Van?’
After discovering the fate of his beloved vehicle, Arthur was refused information regarding its whereabouts by a city marshal who repossessed it. Robert Solimine, refused to tell Arthur who now possessed the van. Solimine avoided revealing the van’s new owner by citing city policy, which protects purchasers from harassment by previous owners.
The van was now in the possession of a man by the name of Jose Lopez, who purchased the van for a mere $US 1,000 at an auction setup to sell repossessed items acquired by the city.
Meanwhile the singer-songwriter was frantically acquiring a team of lawyers and detectives to track down his prized items.
After days of tiresome nagging, Arthur’s legal team persuaded marshal Solimine to reveal the van’s new owner, eventually setting up a meeting to negotiate the exchange of the illusive van.
After a long drawn out negotiation process, caused by Lopez driving the hardest of bargins, the van was finally repurchased by Arthur’s team for $US 5,500, finally reuniting the performer with his cherished wheels and possessions after many sleepless nights.
The saga took its toll on Arthur’s pocket, to the tune of $US 10,000. “It cost plenty, but I’m very happy to have my art and my gear back,” Arthur said in a statement.“Things like this can’t be measured strictly with numbers.”
Joseph Arthur has since written and released a brand new song chronicling his bizarre tale of bad luck in a video called ‘Where Is My Van?’ (not a re-write of the Pixies’ ‘Where Is My Mind?’ sung to the script of Dude, Where’s My Car?). Needless to say, Arthur will now pay his parking tickets in future.
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