Cell Block Party in the Police State

Block Party in the Police State by 

rambling man columnIt’s great to live in a community that likes to get together with their friends and neighbors. Block party is a great idea….that’s been ruined by people out to gain political kudos.

As I walked around downtown during the free portion of the event, I couldn’t help noticing there were 12 cops within my view at any time. That’s not counting event security in their yellow shirts.

In general, when I go to a party and see a dozen cops, I don’t stay. This time I did and I was a little disappointed by the booths and vendors. Nothing too special that I noticed. No fantastic treats I was willing to part with $6 for.

I was looking forward to listening to Swamp Mama Johnson at the paid evening show. Those women know how to make people dance, it’s always a great show when Swamp Mama is playing. After going in we were confronted by the same dilemma many people encountered at cell block party; if you wanted a drink you either paid way too much for a Budweiser or Redhook and sat in the beer garden in uncomfortable seats that had no view of the stage…or you could leave…of course then you had to pay another $15 to get back in.

Casa Que Pasa had a tequila bar set up on Cornwall. Just outside the gate. We decided to leave. Travis Holland, the owner of Casa related an interesting story. It seems he went to quite a bit of expense and time to get all the proper licenses and rent a space that was included in Block Party, so why was his establishment just outside the gate? The brown shirt Gestapo organizers decided to move the gate 20 feet in so their Budweiser wouldn’t encounter any competition.

Cell Block Party. To tell you the truth, I thought Block Party stunk. I ended up sitting outside the gate listening to Swamp Mama J, sorta pissed at the fact that I couldn’t get back in. Even Disneyland and The Gorge give you a stamp to go out to the car. I think I had more fun outside than I would’ve inside anyway.

I had a few beers at Father Johns Pub. I used to tend bar there when it was The Station. John has done a remarkable job of giving the place some flavor and class. It was a real scumbag joint when I worked there. I broke up 10 fights in my first week . John runs a much tighter ship.

So anyway, back to block party. It’s nice to see events like that, see everyone out having fun, let the hair down a bit. Too bad the almighty dollar has to become such a factor. Ski to Sea still holds a place in my heart for good free fun. Everyone out giving it their all. Revelers and merrymakers, athletes and bystanders. My favorite part about Ski to Sea is that when you ask anyone “What’s the prize for the winning teams?” Nobody knows…or cares. Ski to Sea is all about the fun, while Cell Block Party is more about gaining prestige for a certain civic group and (to be fair) raising money for a good cause. It’s a neat idea…that I will never attend again. Nice job organizers.

MAIL

Bham man, I was thinking about starting a protest group to protest the bombing of Serbia. Margaret Meade said something like one individual can make a difference and I would like to make that difference because I don’t think we should be bombing people.

Maybe you could help me spread the word and get more people to protest the bombs that we are dropping on Serbia. Maybe you could use your column to tell people about my protest group. Would you like to join it? Thanks, Matt L. Bellingham

Matt,

Margaret Meade lived in a different time when corporations didn’t rule the world. People don’t matter anymore. If we were bombing corporate offices, I’m sure the mega-corps would put a stop to it. What the government is doing is okay though because they’re only killing people. I’d love to help you with this protest group thing but you left out some key info and haven’t answered my e-mails. Where will your group meet? How will you protest? Are you a violent group? Do you have an agenda? C’mon man, you’re playing right into the corporations hands. They would love it if the only protesters are spaced out hippies with no definitive goal. Check out Jim Hightower’s column to find out more about those nasty corporations and get back to me, I probably won’t join, but I’ll help get the word out.

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