The Doctor Is In

in Poetry

Dr. Wes

Column Hell


From time to time this column inevitably takes a flaming, careening, nose-dive into column hell. The reasons for this are easy to enumerate. You've got your basic procrastination. You've got the fact that yours truly learned to write copying the words off of advertisements (my first word was "colgate".) You've got the fact that I don't get paid for this, unlike some geniuses I know. (I won't say who, I'll leave the director out of this.)

At times like this I naturally turn to Cindy, my personal Muse, Muse of few words, AKA Muse of "Other". I will beg her to give me a clue.

"What should I write about, Oh great immortal Muse," I will say. So I do.

"Well, you act like you're in a bad mood," she says. "Why don't you tell the readers why?"

Hmm. Yeah, that could work.

OK, what the hell was the city thinking when they decided to let skateboarders race outside my window today when I sat down to write this crap? Complete with announcers, paid for by Red Bull, and a PA system aimed directly at my window?

Don't get me wrong, I don't have anything against skateboard racing, and I suppose if it's going to happen it has to happen SOMEwhere, and what the hell, what is there at 3rd S and Washington anyway but poor people and more poor people, they listen to fire truck sirens and aid truck sirens all day anyway, so they're used to it, right?

So whenever the city wants to put some noisy celebration down somewhere on the map let's put it at what is already the 3rd noisiest damned intersection in the city, where the poor people there have proved by the sheer fact of putting up with it year after year that they won't raise hell about it, right?

And let's do it in style. Let's not just ruin everybody's afternoon. We can do much more that that. After having the event, which we'll run until 4PM, we'll do some half-assed but loud cleaning of the area for two hours. Then we'll go away leaving approximately ten stables worth of straw in the streets, so that at roughly 1AM, when that crackpot writer will think we all are gone for the night, we will send in the streetcleaner and the guys with blowers to clear out all of the straw.

No, I don't have anything against skateboarding of any kind, my gripe is with a hypocritical city that would try to shut down a barely audible dance club a few blocks away near prime real estate on the grounds that the noise it generates disturbs the peace, but lets anything go where I live.

A note to the City Council: put it one of YOUR neighborhoods next time. The well-off aren't the only ones who can play NIMBY.

Speaking of finally cracking after all these years of taking it without complaint, let me tell you what else would have my shorts in a bunch, if I were wearing any.

I STILL can't walk into the First Avenue Service Center by the front door. It has been years since I first saw that sign telling me to use the alley entrance.

Excuse me? I wouldn't mind if it were like the Alibi Room, and the alley entrance WAS the front door. But in this case there is a clear front door on the third avenue side, and it isn't even locked! It's open for ventilation all day! So the only reason to tell me to use the back door is to be sure that people like me aren't seen coming and going.

Now Cindy tells me I should wrap up by saying what's wrong with that.

Damn it, where's Rosa Parks when you need her?


© Dr. Wes Browning:
2129 Second Ave., Seattle, WA 98121 (206) 441-3247

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