Slice took the photo here and wondered what the story was behind this sign, which is part of a series of alternating signs in the window of a Union Street home in Park slope. Well, our buddy at the NSA owed us a favor, and we tracked down the man behind the cryptic signage.

His name is George Horner; he’s an administrator at Tony Shafrazi Gallery and has been putting his signs in the window since he bought the house in 1991. Speaking to us by phone, he dispelled the mystery:

It’s kind of in the Keith Haring tradition of using the streets as an art gallery, except in this case it’s my house. I have them made in the style of posters for Chicago blues bands, which I collected for a while before deciding to make my own. I actually contacted the company via their number at the bottom of those posters: Tribune Showprint. It’s the oldest continual poster making company in the U.S., been in business for like 150 years. Real old school flatbed press company.

Horner pays a couple bucks a poster and orders them in batches of 25. The text usually comes from things he hears in casual conversation. Some past hits included “It's nice out. I think I'll keep it out.” and “Poor me, poor me, pour me a glass of beer,” which prompted one passer-by to ring his doorbell and ask what time the bar opens. The text in the current sign, above, comes from a neighbor who was riffing on a previous sign, which came from something Horner’s dad wondered during the Gulf war: “If Iraq attacks Turkey from the rear, will Greece help?”

But most of the time when people say, “I’ve got a great idea for a poster!” it’s not. It’s really not. I know a lot of people that would consider it a great honor if I did a poster using something they said, and they’re always suggesting things. I don’t know exactly what it is that makes it poster-worthy, but part of it for me is cathartic. My brother once threw away all my art work that I was storing at my parents’ house. And when I confronted him, he laughed and said, “Oh, man, I gave you a retrospective at the city dump.” So that became a poster, and I thought, “Well, that was fucked up but at least I got a poster out of it.”

Most people like the posters, and some people who ring my doorbell asking to buy the poster get a free one. Once in a while I get a negative comment. One person thought the “If Iraq attacks Turkey from the rear, will Greece help?” poster was homophobic. It’s just a joke! Another woman was confused by it and thought it was making fun of Greek people, so I had to explain it was a play on words.

They’re not really very offensive; if anything they’re naughty. My wife accuses me of being a bad boy a lot of the time; that’s the spirit of them, being a naughty little boy telling an off-color joke. But more than that, it’s usually about family, trying to make sense of things, like the poster I made out of one thing my mother used to say when she was in High School in Oklahoma. She must have been a wild child because it was something like: “Hurts so good, stop it again, quit it some more, pull it out deeper.” And I’m like, “Woah. Mom, you said that?”

That one I don’t put up in the windows too often because it’s a little too sexual. But once in a while you’ll see it.