Dispatches from DC #03
31 October 2010
Hello there... Rodger French here.
And Happy Halloween to you all. Anne and I plan to celebrate this year by engaging in some unbridled hedonism, to wit, breaking out the candy corn, tuning in game 4 of the World Series, and enthusiastically rooting for the San Francisco Giants. Not that the Rangers aren't a fun team to watch, but pull for a team - any team - from Texas? I don't think so. Anyway, we need a little quality couch time after yesterday.
We attended the "Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear" on the National Mall, and it was ginormous. The National Park Service, which typically lowballs crowd numbers, put attendance at 200,000+, meaning that probably 250,000+ people showed up. The Metro system was completely swamped; it took us two hours to make a trip that normally takes twenty minutes. And, like the vast majority of participants, we got nowhere near the stage.
But the crowd, mostly young and white, was very civilized, and apart from some misguided youths climbing trees and even buildings (so I hear) and clambering on top of the portable toilets (which is very disconcerting if you're trying to pee) in order to get a better view, the proceedings proceeded quite sanely. Which was, of course, the point.
For those of us who missed out on the official program, entertainment value was provided by the signage people brought with them. Ever the diligent correspondent, I scribbled down a few possibly interesting examples and would like to pass them on to you, complete with helpful contextual headings.
Spiritual: "God Hates Figs - Mark 11: 12-14"
Sensual: "Watching Christine O'Donnell makes me want to touch myself."
Reasonable: "We may disagree, but I will not stomp on your head."
Economical: "Gay Mexican Nazis are raising my taxes."
Practical: "I don't mind paying taxes because roads don't pave themselves."
Cultural: "Stop Justin Bieber"
Gustatory: "Tea Party? Make mine an Iced Chai Latte."
Classical: "What's so funny about Peace, Love and Understanding?"
A.J. Favourite: "Librarians for Informed Opinion"
All in all, the Rally proved to be a fine way to spend a beautiful autumn afternoon. That evening, against long, crowded odds, a number of dear friends made their way to our flat, where we engaged in scintillating conversation whilst ingesting copious quantities of quality snackage - a fine housewarming party and perfect way to conclude the day.
[Civic Responsibility Reminder: Tuesday, November 2 is Election Day. In addition to voting, I will be a poll worker at my local precinct. If you are a registered voter and are ambivalent about participating, I encourage you to be a conscientious citizen and get your sorry ass to the polls. And no "they're all the same" bullshit excuses. Somebody's going to get elected and the lesser of two evils is still less evil. One more thing: If you don't vote, don't bitch. Thank you very much.]