Just some thoughts and ideas going around in my head while trying to figure out where I am and where everyone else is going.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

To go or not to Go

I had always sort of planned what I would write on my one hundredth post. I would reference the first post and speak about what I wanted to do originally, whatever direction it had taken since and where it might go in the future if there is one in the future. But since that doesn’t interest me now, I doubt that it will interest you either. So moving on.

The only time that I have been to Chicago was in the mid 90’s to see what was advertised as the largest Monet exhibit in the world ever at the Chicago Institute of something or other. The museum had assembled pieces from its own collection, other museums and private owners to build the exhibit. However, by the time my partner and I got to the city, the museum had sold out of all the regular reserved tickets and would only sell same day exhibit tickets between 9 and 10 each morning.

The first morning we arrived early, somewhere between 8 and 9 stayed in line for about 30 minutes before some guy came along and told the line that all of the tickets had been sold for that day and to come back the next day, which we did. This time we left the hotel between 5:30 or 6am if I can remember and walked the few blocks to the museum. It was the middle of November and the high for that day in Chicago was 31, which meant it must have been 15 or 20 something degrees if not 5 which is how it felt. Even though we both alternated standing in line out in the cold while the other one ran over to a nearby coffee shop every 20 to 30 minutes, I still remember that point when I lost all feeling in my toes and in my legs and I started not to care. As long as the family jewels didn’t shrivel up so much that they wouldn’t be able to turn back to normal size, none of it mattered.

Now I don’t know if that qualifies me for being able to wait out in the cold because I may have a little bit of a dilemma. Do I freeze again all night this time or do I spend money that I know could be put to better use?

I haven’t really given much thought about this winter, but after hearing that George Bush had gathered the White House staff on the lawn recently and told them to get ready for new management, I figured that even this guy knows it’s (a) a special moment in time and (b) it’s time to go. I thought to myself, I should go too. For all the reasons that you can think of, I should go to Washington DC in January.

Then I thought it just wouldn’t be practical. Every fool and their aunt Fanny will be on I-95 creating danger and havoc on the highway. A journey that should take 2 to 3 hours will probably increase to 5 or 6 with traffic and fellow revelers. And forget about getting back home. That might take even longer unless I took the Amtrak train to DC. However, all reservations for January 20 have been booked, I have checked. Unless I was willing to catch the 12 midnight train out of Philly and find a good spot on the mall with a blanket in the middle of the night which I’m sure hundreds will be doing if not thousands; or catch a 9am business class Acela Express for about $150 one way and hope I can get a glance of one of the big screen TVs they will be out there because I would be so far away from the action.

I suppose I can also try to stop being so bougie and just catch an unreserved train and if I have to, just stand all the way to DC for 2 hours. Of course there would be the 3 or 4 hours standing for the Inauguration and speech and maybe even parade. And if I’m still unlucky not stand all the way back to Philadelphia and finally New Jersey.

That’s a hell of a lot of standing. That would be like that Abu Ghraib shit. I’d start confessing to stuff I’d never even heard of. I might even tell them I was on the Grassy Knoll in ’63. I might even…I’m getting carried away.

Maybe I’ll just stay home and watch the events with Katie Couric on the 6:30pm news, it would be so much easier and it’s time I gave her a chance anyway.

What will you do this coming January?


  1. So is this your 100th post? If so: CONGRATS!!

    I hate crowds and I am a control freak when it comes to being able to go where I want when I want. That means - no trains, no busses, no 10,000 people crowding around me all trying to see the same thing.

    Nope, I will be at home, comfortable in front of the TV watching the crowds and excitment. I wish I were the type of person to pack up and go experience it, but I'm just not.

    If you go, take lots of pictures so we can live vicariously through you!

  2. Me and a few of my friends might do a kind of scheduled seat-saving-sit-in for the inaguration (or however you spell that word). Couple of reasons that might not be feasible: Travel time might be high due to increased security, and since we'd have to dress warmly, we're not going to look terribly attractive. But, depending upon how cold it is, I wont care. Plus, I heard theyre going to have screens set up so that folks can view the ceremony from farther down the Mall.

    No matter what, it should be interesting!


  3. Runningmom - Like I told a friend the other day, this is a once in a life time moment. You will never ever get to see and experience the first again once it's over.

    But I'm still not sure yet.

    Lola - Increased security? I hadn't even thought about that. Man o man, it looks more and more like I'll be watching it on my own screen in the comfort of my living room. Or maybe I'll turn off the heat, open up the windows and just pretend I'm there.

  4. I'm with Running Mom - there will be tons of coverage on all the stations - lol...I'll be at home in front of the TV!

  5. Congrats on # 100!!

    I would love to see Obama be sworn into the office of President. However, if I can't sit some where close to the stage, and if I have to watch it from a position where they llok like ants on a stage, I'll stay home.

  6. Darius - Of course you are right and probably sensible. But nothing beats being there live and with others especially if, and that's a big if, you have a great view.

    Whozhe - I see it this way, Obama has never been to South Jersey and probably never will. Nobody ever does. I missed him when he was in Philly, it was a Saturday and I woke up late so when will the next opportunity for me to see him be? And like I said this is a first, and a first will never come again.


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