Jim Grant was driving home in Carlsbad, California, when he came to a fork in the road.
No, an actual fork.
The oversized kitchen utensil was 6 feet high, made of wood, painted silver and mounted in the concrete island at the intersection of Levante Street and Anillo Way in south Carlsbad.
Grant, a local photographer and a contributor to CNN iReport, knew he had to pull over.
"I actually laughed out loud in my truck and just knew I had to get some shots of this urban art before some city employee takes it down or it is vandalized," he said. He shot some photos Tuesday afternoon, posted them on CNN iReport and left a Post-it note on the sculpture in hopes of finding the artist.
The literal fork in the road was short-lived. A city crew pulled it out of the concrete Wednesday morning, saying in a statement that "although the fork in the road remains, the literal fork was removed this morning. We appreciate the creativity, but it's not legal or safe to put objects like this on public streets or medians."
CNN affiliate KFMB filmed the fork being taken away.
Grant and other local residents, including the creator himself, are holding out hope that city officials will change their mind and return the quirky spectacle.
Carlsbad Communications Manager Kristina Ray told CNN, "If the artist would like to propose to donate this art to the city, we do have a process through our Cultural Arts Office to consider it. He or she could get in touch with us to learn more about this process."
Before the fork was ripped out, Grant's Post-it note made its way to the artist, who explained he was a retired teacher who wanted to remain anonymous for fear of getting fined or sued by the city.