austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,
austin_dern
austin_dern

Throw away your toys, oh me oh my

Now let me tell some of what happened when I went to Washington, DC, last weekend.

The visit was part of the Rally To Restore Sanity And/or Fear, which bunny_hugger was immediately excited about as it started and I liked, and which both of us were encouraged to attend by our respective parents. In fact, my father wanted to go himself, partly because he says he loves The Daily Show (even though it doesn't look to me like he ever watches the Tivo-recorded episodes), partly because he has been asking me roughly every 25 minutes since I moved back in if I want to go to Washington for a long weekend with him. I'd resisted because we spend enough time passive-aggressively sniping at each other. However, with bunny_hugger getting hotel space early, and my father going to an aunt's sister's house, that wouldn't be so bad. And one of my uncles also wanted to go; I like him to start with and he'd keep my father amused. A cousin was also thinking about going but decided his backlog of schoolwork prohibited it.

We set out frightfully early Friday morning because my father seemed to think it important we get to Washington before noon. In hindsight he might have been trying to scope out a good spot on the Mall, in which case we left far too late. But we were roaring our way in the Toyota Something determined not to stop until ... actually, almost right away, because my uncle wanted The New York Times for its crossword puzzle and we don't usually have that delivered anymore. Since we needed gas we figured to get it at Wawa, but found that they didn't have any, for some reason. We stopped at McDonald's for breakfast, which turned out to be sitting and eating, rather than getting something and eating on the road, so that our early-morning start was more of a middle-morning start after all.

My father, having announced that he wanted to take I-295 south rather than the Turnpike because given the choice between roads my father will always take the slower, and we're lucky he didn't want to go entirely by back roads, took us onto the Turnpike. His goal was to get a Times somewhere, such as perhaps the Barnes and Noble bookstore on US 130, so naturally we skipped both 130 and 295 and took the Turnpike instead. But we stopped at the first service plaza and discovered ... they didn't have any Times either. My uncle gave up on the crossword.

Driving wasn't particularly eventful, although my father did say that somewhere around Delaware he'd like to stop and let me take over driving for a while. I said sure. He didn't stop, so I didn't take over.

My father had planned to drive down to the aunt's sister's, where he and my uncle would be staying, then go into town so we could pick up my uncle's daughter the undergraduate, and then leave town again to drop me off at the hotel or maybe pick up bunny_hugger, a plan so complicated you'll not be surprised to know it never came close to happening. The only question had been how would it be subverted; the answer came when my aunt's sister phoned and said she didn't really feel up to going to dinner so we should just drop me off first and not worry about including her. And in the last stages of driving I directed my father (with the help of my iPad, happy to say) to the hotel first, resulting in some low-level arguing when he insisted we should have picked up the uncle's daughter first. This was also when bunny_hugger called to say she'd arrived at the airport and would be arriving by Metro in maybe an hour.

So. I camped out in the hotel lobby to wait for bunny_hugger's arrival, and my father and uncle left to get something to eat. Fortunately I brought a couple extremely thick books.

Trivia: The Kekionga Baseball Club of Fort Wayne, Indiana, of the 1850s and 1860s carried on as a debate and singing society during the winter months. Source: But Didn't We Have Fn? An Informal History Of Baseball's Pioneer Era, 1843 - 1870, Peter Morris.

Currently Reading: A History Of Modern Computing, Paul E Ceruzzi.

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