austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,

I have to find a way to make you fall and see ...

Outside the Museum of Natural History I thought how very nice it would be to get something to drink, and what do you know but outside there was a promotional cart giving away free cans of Dr Pepper and Diet Dr Pepper. Trying to convince me to drink Diet Dr Pepper isn't hard, so in that regard it was a poor use of their marketing budget to give me a free sample, but I appreciated it. Given the heat the sodas were really moving; the can I got had clearly been exposed to refrigeration but had not run amok with the idea. Still, it was colder than the air temperature.

As I walked to the Metro station, a kid who was similarly given a Dr Pepper took a swig and then spat it out, producing a spray of soda foam a few steps ahead of me. His mother (I assume) began scolding him, pointing out that in his thoughtlessness he could easily have soaked ``that man''. I'm still not used to being called things like ``that man''. I nodded my thanks to the mother --- it would have been really irritating to put up with a soda-soaked shirt the rest of the day, although I had a spare change of clothes in my car back at the hotel --- and let them go on about their business.

I knew the Zoo was off some Metro station, but couldn't think of which until I studied the system map and concluded this ``Woodley Park/Zoo'' entry looked promising. I'd have to transfer from one line to another, but that's all right, since it's not as though there were some major track malfunction near Dupont Circle slowing down the traffic in the direction of the Zoo. Well, they warned us about it, and I figured, I've got a book, I can take a reasonable delay.

What I hadn't expected was delays and all the pedestrian traffic in the world occupying the transfer station. It wasn't just waiting fifteen minutes for the next train; it was also discovering the train was completely packed on arrival; and that after it let off some desperate survivors and by the time it got packed full again, the mass of people on the platform had not grown any smaller. The audio system mentioned there was some trouble outside Dupont Circle and, the delays were expected to continue. I took the hint, and made my way back to the original train to return to the Smithsonian station whence I came.

Trivia: The Roman practice of dating things AUC, from the legendary construction of Rome, was introduced by Marcus Terentius Varro (116 BC-27 BC). Source: Mapping Time: The Calendar and its History, EG Richards.

Currently Reading: Second Founding: New York City, Reconstruction, and the making of American Democracy, David Quigley.


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