Well, that escalated quickly. In a scene not unlike the opening minutes of 2001, a group of angry young men stole up Pine Mountain, expressed distaste for Mexicans and aliens, then proceeded to tear down the latest instalment of 2020's favourite meme.
California's answer to the Utah monolith had only been discovered on 2 December. A day later it was gone, pushed over in the early hours of Thursday by three young intellectuals who claimed to have driven more than five hours for the mission.
Poor-quality video filmed through a night-vision lens and taken from streaming site DLive, since removed, shows their leader referencing "so-called alien obelisks" before expressing intent to replace the structure with a cross. "Christ is king in this country," he says, melodramatically banging the thing with his palm. "We don't want illegal aliens from Mexico or outer space. So let's tear this bitch down."
Charming. The little boys then lay into the innocent stainless-steel art project, chanting like a Sunday School frat "CHRIST IS KING!" as it topples over. The intro douchebag then proclaims "America First!" while his mates puzzle over how to remove the obelisk from its base.
According to Vice, the stream followed the wee scamps erecting a plywood cross in its place, posing for Instagram snaps with boots on the monolith "as if it's a hunting trophy", then pulling it down the mountain with ropes. The hipster media empire said that at one point the boys thought they were being pursued by "Antifa", and that the stream prior to these events had been defined by racist drivel, mention of "burning crosses", and other dumb shit not fit for the 21st century. Or any century.
All of which makes for a depressing end(?) to the saga that had provided some light relief and whimsy in these dark times as people speculated over the objects' origins. Sadly, the ease with which the California monolith was removed seems to confirm this one at least was man-made, though we remain none the wiser as to what all this is an advert for. For now. ®