I really don't get why it's so hard for bureaucratic institutions to operate (or at least pretend to operate) under the guise of common sense. First of all, the idea of having a conference these days not in Second Life (with Ed Markey officiating, of course) is a waste of time and money. Seriously, holding this world nuke-u-lar summit or whatever at the Washington Convention Center for most every major leader on Earth completely and utterly (although not literally) blows my mind. Why? Because having a conference of this caliber in a major city's downtown area is threefold retarded.
1) It shuts down capitalism. (Which cuts into my boozing schedule; even The Passenger was closed down!)
2) It wastes tax payer money. (Did you know federal employees were told NOT to come into work? Although that's assuming that they actually do stuff at work to begin with.)
3) And it draws cops away from solving real crimes (again, assuming that they actually do stuff at work to begin with) so they can stop assumed assassins from pulling off their nefarious crimes.
The only problem with that last point (besides the fact that it leaves the entire rest of the city open for perps to rape, maim and murder freely), is that assuming most people are assassins only makes an ass to the third power out of both them and me. To put this a bit more precisely, I believe I was unlawfully profiled and harassed yesterday, which brings me to a story I like to call "How I Almost Got Arrested for Using Too Much Logic."
There I was, riding clean (that is, with no dirty bombs) toward downtown to hand in some forms so I can mentor a foster kid (really!) when I ran (metaphorically) into a soldier blocking off the road.
"You can't get through here," he said. "You need to go another four blocks west."
Fair enough, I thought. These things happen and four blocks isn't outrageous so I rode west. Four blocks later, I turned to head south when I ran into a cop.
"Oh, no you don't!" said a surly lady in blue, sticking her chubby, little hand in my face.
Meanwhile, a cyclist whizzed by through the intersection on my left.
"Really? I was told I could pass through this intersection. That guy just did." While I pointed to the first cyclist, I saw another ride by in the other direction.
"Well, you're not those people. You can't go through."
A group of pedestrians passed by on my right.
"Wait. Why then? How come those people can go through? This system doesn't make sense. Can you just let me through with these other people? I'm just trying to deliver some papers so I can start mentoring a foster kid."
"WHAT PART OF WHAT I'M SAYING TO YOU DON'T YOU UNDERSTAND!" She had quickly escalated to a full-blown shout.
Uh-oh, I thought. Bitch just pushed my buttons, yet I decided to remain purposefully calm. "Well, for starters, I don't get the part where all those people can go through this intersection and only I can't, especially when I probably have the best reason, you know, saving kids and what not?"
"YOU WON'T BE ABLE TO GO THROUGH ANYTHING IF YOU KEEP THIS UP AND I LOCK YOU UP!"
And then I snapped. Oh, hell nah! I thought, as I decided to match her rage in my own voice. I said, "Really? REALLY?! You're really threatening to WASTE my -- A TAXPAYING CITIZEN'S -- money on arresting ME for wanting to HELP SAVE THE F*CKING CHILDREN of this CESS POOL of a city?!?!? Hmm, I don't know, it seems to me those dollars would be better spent on, say, SOLVING LEGITIMATE CRIMES! COMMON SENSE, MA'AM, IS AMAZING, ISN'T IT?!?!?!!"
I've never seen real fire shoot out of someone's eyes before, but I imagine if I stuck around to look at this surly woman's face for much longer, I'd have been burned. And arrested. So, instead, I quickly turned my ninja-like bicycle, Junior, around and pedaled like I'd never pedaled before.
After all, I only look good in blaze orange when I'm big game hunting:
In a wheelchair? Why not?! Which very offensively brings me back to my point. There I was on my two wheels (albeit vertically aligned, rather than horizontally), riding away from what was sure to morph from verbal fisticuffs to actual handcuffs because the DCPD act irate and irrational 80 percent of the time. Oh, and they apparently hate children and want to see them suffer. Deductive logic. Or maybe just schmeductive. Whatever.
But speaking of the kids, there's still about 100 (out of 130 or so), who are looking for reliable and fun mentors to take them to the zoo, make art projects, play sports, visit amusement parks and just talk to. For God's sake, right now all they have to rely on is the DC government. If that doesn't goad you into taking action, then I don't know what will. Perhaps, I'll find that mean lady cop and come have her arrest you for not doing anything...literally! ZING! So, truly, if you want to mentor a kid in need, email me at theantidc at gmail dot com.
As most of you who live in DC have probably heard by now, a 68-year-old female cyclist was actually killed yesterday by one of the military vehicles brought in to guard the nuclear conference. This hits me particularly hard as an avid cyclist myself and my sincere condolences go out to the woman's family and friends.