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Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Inauguration Diary

patricia leslie

Dear Diary,

Enough people are writing about the speech and apparel and all, I thought I would bring you some flavor from the people.

In four years I hope I am not as dumb as I was this year to buy a parade ticket.  With my ticket in hand today, what did it matter?  Police at F and 14th, my assigned entry, would not let me in.  $44, that's all.  It's not like I am a member of the one percent.
Tickets didn't mean much to the police at 14th and F/patricia leslie

Mr. President, you say "the people this" and "the people that."  Well, what about letting "the people" see your parade?  Is there a place we can see it without paying a fee? Is there a place we can see it paying a fee?
Up 14th "the people" stood behind a fence and caught glimpses of the parade, about a half football field away/patricia leslie

But to begin the day.  Not all was a loss, by any stretch. Metro was almost empty.  Amazing. And everyone's raving about the president's speech.

I lucked out and got a red ticket for the swearing-in which was terrific.

This line behind the congressional house office buildings required about an hour's wait before ticket holders reached "security check-in."/patricia leslie

After the security check, the lines at the porta-potties required another 20 to 30 minutes wait.  I don't suppose anyone thought ahead to order more porta-potties to satisfy the needs of several thousand people.  And early in the morning, already no t.p. (But I know those porta-potty party planners have never used porta-potties in all their party lives, and I came equipped.)
Knock!  Knock!  Who's there?  Well, it ain't Congress on the throne/patricia leslie

And then there was the man in the tree.

You can see him holding a large white saucer near the top of the tree/patricia leslie

Actually, he looked to be an elderly gentleman who climbed a tree on the Capitol grounds and screamed the whole time about killing babies.  At first, I was hoping his voice would give out, but no.  He kept at it.

In my section, we sighed and blessed the United States of America which permits freedom of speech, even if we were a bit annoyed. 

Question:  How was he able to get this sign past security?  Maybe it was an earlier plant.

A  man in a tree at the Inauguration/patricia leslie

A woman on the Metro who stood in the green section with her family told me later that police erected two ladders to go up and get the man, but he climbed higher, just like a kitty cat or a monkey, and they let him alone and surrounded the base of the tree.  I wonder if he's still up there.   He might be frozen by now.  As a matter of fact, his mouth might be wired shut.

Part of the crowd on the Capitol grounds with Ulysses S. Grant on the horse in the distance and the East Building of the National Gallery of Art beyond/patricia leslie

This woman wore heels on grass (!), but was not totally brain dead since, look!  She brought another pair of shoes/patricia leslie

You wanted to ride Metro, huh?  Before nightfall? This was at Federal Center South/patricia leslie

While walking towards the Washington Monument after the ceremony ended so I could get to my refused entry at 14th and F (2.5 hours), I met up at 2:50 p.m. on 18th with three ladies from Columbia, S.C. (Yes, we had to go that far west to cross Pennsylvania and get to the other side of the road like herded chickens, since Pennsylvania was blocked, of course, for miles. And years before the parade even started.)

The visitors said they needed to be at RFK Stadium at 3 p.m. to board their chartered bus back home.  They said a policeman had sent them up 18th. To RFK? Well, what a surprise. A policeman on Independence told me I could cross Pennsylvania at 15th.  They must have been those police imports from Georgia since they knew nothing about D.C. streets.

I said "Ladies, I hate to give you bad news, but you ain't going to make RFK in 10 minutes." They assured me their bus would not leave them.

About that time we came to this unusual sculpture of Starbux cups.

A Starbux sculpture on 18th/patricia leslie

And up the street I met this nice fellow from New York who told me he'd been in Washington selling Obama condoms for three days.  He didn't know if it was a profitable venture or not, but he said he had a wad of cash in his pocket.

The different kinds of condoms available were Hope is Not a Form of Protection, the White House Stimulus Package, and Use with Good Judgement (sic!)/patricia leslie

I walked on…and on…and on until I came to said entry point at F and 14th, and the police said, "Nope, not you sister."  Gee, thanks a lot.  Live and learn. End of day. But I sure 'nuf got in my exercise on Inauguration Day. 

P.S. I don't think we are one nation and one people.  I think we are many nations and many people. What's wrong with that?

Everyone is acclaiming the president's speech on Monday, however, I haven't listened to Fox/patricia leslie

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