SOMERSWORTH — In his billboard picture, Michael Cummings twirls around playfully, his bold, dark eyebrows in contrast to the long pinkish wig he’s wearing.
Anyone driving on West High Street in Somersworth, heading toward the city Tuesday morning, notices him. How can you miss him? He’s the model on a gigantic billboard.
On the huge advertisement, Cummings is holding a peach bubble tea in a tall glass showing blueberries at the bottom. The headline reads: “DID SOMEBODY SAY IM (picture of a peach) MENT? It’s a colorful, political statement created by graphic artist and owner of local cafe Teatotaller, Emmett Soldati.
Soldati explains how the idea came about. “Well, Michael was a big inspiration. He’s been with us since the beginning. He definitely always speaks his truth and for this billboard I thought there was some more truth to speak for Teatotaller.”
Soldati also said he was inspired by his father, Lincoln Soldati, who is running for Congress. On the campaign trail, Lincoln Soldati has made his case for impeachment of President Donald Trump. According to Soldati, his father is “a kind of bold, speaks-truth-to-power kind of guy.”
It got Soldati to thinking about how to marry those two ideas: New Hampshire being a kind of political lightning-rod state with Michael’s very live-your-best-life, speak-your-truth mentality. And, Emmett said to the point: “How can we sell bubble tea at the same time?”
“We had just painted in Teatotaller and people have responded really well to our renovation and Michael…