Wednesday, November 14, 2007

a broken city?

On top of this city's penchant for khakis and its annoying Blackberry addiction (unfortunately, I may have to include myself in the latter category...), one of the gnarliest aspects of DC is the pavement. It’s not that the sidewalks are littered so heavily with garbage or excrement, dog or otherwise (ahh, I miss the East Village), nor are they so buckled and uneven that the surfaces are nearly impossible to walk on (ahh, I miss hobbling through Red Square in heels). No, no...none of that. At first glance the streets and sidewalks are quite clean and flat here. Perhaps, even pristine at times. But don't let superficial appearances fool you. Next time you’re out, take a closer’s horrifying.

Ew. Gross. Sick. And most of all, gnarly.

There are Band-Aids plastered all over the streets here, have you noticed? I really don’t understand how and why this happens. Does some federal regulation mandate Band-Aid adhesive be less sticky in DC than elsewhere in the world? Do people not have the patience to take a careful few seconds to properly affix it to their person? Maybe the rate of Band-Aids per capita is much higher here than in other cities, making it mere statistics as to why so many adorn DC's streets?

I is really, really weird. I counted five the other day while walking from my office on the upper blocks of Connecticut Ave:

  1. Outside of Gold’s gym;
  2. Outside of the Subway;
  3. On the stairs near the Giant;
  4. A block south of Van Ness/UDC metro; and
  5. On the corner of Conn. Ave and Porter St. by the 7-11.

Yet, lest you think these tiny strips of possibly (um, probably) diseased plastic are found only on the upper blocks of Conn. Ave, let me be the downer to inform you that, oh no my friend, the repulsiveness does not stop there. They...are...EVERYWHERE!

There was one on Mt. Pleasant St. just past what may end up being my favorite DC restaurant (not that I really want to associate this post with food of any kind) Burritos Fast. Another one on 14th Street near the CVS in Columbia Heights. One across from Union Station, heading toward the Capitol. And countless others just waiting to be spotted in Adams Morgan, Dupont Circle, and probably even Georgetown (although I can’t really say I’ve been there enough times to verify).

I'm sorry that I probably just ruined your life and that you will now be furiously searching for this most unhealthy street graffitti every step you take...every move you make...every breath you take. But these Band-Aids are probably watching you. (Hot damn! I love the Police.)

I, too, at first thought these flesh-colored stickies were just the consequence of bad summer footwear and and even worse bandage application. But, I have a newsflash for you, Walter Cronkite! (Super hot damn! I love Zoolander.) Summer’s over! SO WHAT COULD IT BE???

Perhaps this isn’t just a disgusting coincidence. Perhaps, yes, indeed, these Band-Aids are watching you. Maybe, just maybe, this Band-Aid-gate, if you will, is some kind of bizarre government experiment! Or a clever means of dispatching bugging devices around the city! Is this the Patriot Act gone Band-Aid?!

Maybe, probably, and definitely. God Bless America!


Merujo said...

I have the misfortune of encountering used condoms on the steps at my place of work at least once a week. Three blocks from the White House, well lit area... yuck.

Marissa said...

Clearly, the government is getting craftier!

But seriously, that is beyond gnarly.

Jen said...

This is really funny and a unique perspective. I think the grossest are the condoms though. I generally walk to the Metro station from Metro parking each day, kind of looking down, mulling over the day's tasks, so, obviously, I am aware of the same stretch of pavement on a fairly regular basis. And one tries not to wonder why there are usually condoms (even worse, mostly used ones) lying around in the middle of the parking lot. Ugh.

Marissa said...

As if we needed one more reason for the White House to be creepy...

Kari said...

Ugh - I unfortunately discovered this gross phenomenon when I drug one home on my shoe...disease hysteria ensued.