It was three hours before 2010 turned into 2011, and I was puking into a plastic bag. It was like that Family Guy episode where everyone drank ipecac on a dare.
My family and I all had the flu and it was decided that no way in hell was anyone going anywhere for New Year’s Eve. After all, we’ve been there & done that so many times that it’s old hat at this point. I stood in Times Square on many an occasion, including the big 1999-2000 bash, and really nothing has topped it since.
As I laid there and eyed the clock which read 10:30pm, I began getting restless, however. Sitting home while something is going down is just not in my nature. Even when I’m sick as a dog.
By the way, where did the expression “sick as a dog” come from?
I mean, I know plenty of dogs, and fewer than 1% of them have been sick at any given time. Really, most of them have been quite healthy. Hell, they can eat their own feces, drink out of the toilet bowl, and dumpster-dive at will without getting the slightest bit ill. If you think about, most of us could only be so lucky to be “sick as a dog”.
Even though I had been yawning in technicolor for most of the day, I just couldn’t go out of 2010 on my back (like your mother). I had to do something. It didn’t have to be interesting, it didn’t have to be exciting, it just had to be a little more “do-it-yourself” than watching New Year’s Rockin’ Eve, which is just a little too bourgeois for yours truly. The first time I ring in the New Year in front of the tube, I’m going to call it a life.
I was, however, the only person in the household who felt this way. When I asked if anyone wanted to join me, I believe their exact words were “Blaaaaaaaaaaaah” (puking).
Before leaving my crib, I browsed the monorail website just to make sure they could get me where I was going, and as you can see, they assured me that they could.
It was 22 degrees outside, so I threw on an extra flannel shirt, walked over to Westlake Station, and was greeted with the following:
This was 800 levels of wrong. The Monorail is the primary means of transit between the Space Needle and Downtown, and while I was standing there contemplating what to do, I saw no less than 100 other people realize my same fate. They walked up to the double doors grinning from ear-to-ear only to be unceremoniously turned away by a lame sign made with a $70 Epson printer.
I had to weigh my options. Walk the mile to the Needle, or go over to Third Ave and hop a bus.
Given my severe nausea, I opted for the bus.
This was a mistake.
When I got over to 3rd Ave, there was already a crowd of people.
“What’s going on?”, I asked the first lady I encountered.
“We’ve been waiting here forever, I think the buses to Seattle Center might not be running”, she said.
Strike 2 for Seattle transit.
I guess if you want something done right, you have to do it yourself. And so I did. I hopped the shoe leather express and headed north.
When I got near the Westin, I passed beneath a monorail train that was jerking back and forth, back and forth, making one hell of a racket. Kind of like when I take the Victoria Secret catalog into the bathroom.
I guess the thing really was broken.
About this time, I looked at my Android and noticed that it was 11:45.
I staked out a spot near the King Cat theater with a few dozen other spectators, made small talk, and before I knew it the fireworks had begun.
A few minutes into the video, two guys started shouting behind me.
“What nigga? Whachu gonna do nigga?!?!”
I turned around, and in a nearby parking lot, two white guys were throwing their arms in the air like rappers and challenging each other to “do something”. They were also implying that the other was an African-American. Believe me when I tell you that these guys were whiter than the shaded side of my nutsack.
If you turn the sound on my fireworks video up, and listen very closely from 4:15 – 4:30, you can vaguely make out the word “nigga” being used about three times.
I didn’t know whether to laugh, cry, or shoot myself.
You haven’t seen comedy until you’ve seen two honkies from Bellevue going all gangsta on each other in the parking lot of the King Cat Theater.
It’s also kind of depressing. Seriously, how does a white guy rationalize shouting “nigga” at another white guy? Furthermore, how does he do it with a straight face?
I think this little incident just shows what I have been saying for some time. We’re a nation of idiots, and things are only getting worse. Idiocracy is on its way, and I feel bad for all of you teens and twenty-somethings out there. By the time you retire, you’re going to be governed by baboons, and the generation after you is going to wish they were governed by baboons (which will at that point be the superior life form).
The fireworks went off, they were great, and I walked back home nursing a severely frostbitten hand. Holding a camera above my head for 8 minutes without gloves in 22 degree temperatures was my first stupid decision of 2011. One of many I am sure.
Of course, I would not have been nearly so cold if I could have just jumped on a goddamn bus or train in the first place.
I’m sick of transit companies nationwide encouraging people to leave their cars behind, only to drop the ball in such a fantastic manner when their advice is heeded. No wonder people still pile into their automobiles to take even the most trivial of trips. It’s far more reliable. At least until the SuperTrain gets here. Steve has really lost focus since he married that shrew he met at the Pearl Jam gig.
Speaking of ‘Singles’ … is it me or did Kyra Sedgwick look 60 years old in that movie? What happened, did Cameron Crowe say “bring me the oldest looking 25 year old you can find, and make sure it looks like she wears dentures!”?
Seriously, if you haven’t watched the movie recently, watch it again. Sedgwick doesn’t look like she has any teeth throughout the whole movie. That little detail has always bothered me.
Anyway, to the Seattle Monorail and King County Metro, I would like to simply offer the following:
To the guys who put on the Space Needle Fireworks … well done.