Thursday, August 03, 2006

Celebrating death and destruction

There's nothing like working on the waterfront during SeaFair. Big Navy boats going by outside the windows, Blue Angels buzzing the building overhead, and young men in their dress whites as far as the eye can see. Yes, some people - most people - think it's quite grand.

Unfortunately, I'm not most people.

While some see big, impressive boats with proud service men lining the decks, I see floating killing machines full of kids younger than my baby brother. While some are impressed with the skills and flying acrobatics of the Angels, I think that this must be what you hear right before your home and family members are blown to bits. While some see throngs of single men roaming the city streets, I see... well... throngs of single men roaming the city streets.

Before you scoff and suggest that I lighten up already, I should clarify that I'm not so bothered by these things as to protest the city's celebration. I still happily attend the building's annual BBQ where we watch the fleet come in. But my favorite part of the event is watching the counter-fleet of protest boats sailing around the larger ships, like flies circling slow-moving piles of dung.

I'll tell you what would make me feel a lot better: Don't make the boys stand at attention for the two hours it takes the ships to make their way around the bay. Why not throw some deck chairs up there, maybe set up a couple volley-ball nets, and provide them with mai tais and margaritas? THAT would be supporting our troops.

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