Valentines day this year was a real non-thing. I didn’t even go out and get shitfaced (per my usual tradition more years than not)--I had a much different agenda. I turned in early because Brad and I were headed to New York Saturday morning for the big anti-war demonstration.
I’ve never really been an activist. Most of the people I’ve known who’ve been most active in that sort of thing have done it more to be associated with a certain group of people--surrounding whatever cause--rather than the cause itself. For them, it’s just been an excuse to be unruly in public and to do it in the name of something "worthy." I’ve always hated those people and have never wanted to be associated with that sort of thing. Also, I’m not willing to chain myself to anything unless it involves a woman in tight black leather…but enough on that.
So to find myself waiting for a bus to New York at 4:30 on a Saturday morning, standing in the freezing cold next to an odd mixture of students and aging ex-hippies, was a shock even to me. I’ll tell you, though, it was an amazing experience.
When we got off the bus in NY, we immediately headed over to NY Public Library to join one of the feeder marches. Because NY had denied the request to march, activists decided instead to start 100 marches from different points, fucking up the city. The march we were a part of was joined by a few others as we walked and by the time we hit 3rd Ave, the march spilled off the sidewalks and into the street, stopping traffic and panicking the cops. People were friendly for the most part; lots of smiles and signs and songs. There were some points of turmoil as we passed: a group of people arguing with a group of cops about Iraq aggression vs. 9/11, a verizon truck left marooned in the middle of the street with a black-clad activist standing atop, waving a flag, I saw a 60-year-old woman help take down a barricade amidst 20 riot-gear-clad cops. It was an eventful afternoon and it DID make me feel better to see that about 400,000 other people were as pissed about recent events as I am.
Brad and I managed to even get to a bar later in the afternoon and to the Model when we got back home. Fight tyranny, get loaded. That’s a full day in my book.