Print Story Washington, D. C. Diaries, Days 2 thru N
Family
By ObviousTroll (Wed Apr 12, 2006 at 03:55:36 PM EST) photo, family, vacation, folksonomies are just a fad (all tags)
Sorry, for not replying to your comments on my previous diary - I had to choose between $10/day internet access and two more beers with dinner each night and, you know, I really like beer.


I also like not getting e-mail from work, and not getting the internet access made me safe from the temptation to check in with the office. The only reason I have access today is because I needed to check mapquest to get directions to Udvar-Hazy, so we can catch it before we head home. Mail.app says I have 60 unread messages. I'm resisting. Really.

So, how has the trip been? I haven't even uploaded all the pictures yet, but let me see if I can give some highlights:

Best Lucky Opportunity

A tie. First, I tripped into the guided tour at NA&S and got more detail than I ever wanted about the evolution of aircraft from the Wright Flyer through Space Ship One (SPACE SHIP ONE!?! I didn't even realize that it had already been retired!) No pictures from this part yet - I was focused on what the guide was saying.

Second was wandering in the bug zoo just as they announced they were going to feed the tarantula. It was kind of like watching my 14 year old son eat. You know - Frame #1: Cricket & Spider. Frame #2: Spider with Cricket Stuck to its Mandible. I think I saw it move, but I wouldn't swear to it.

this really bugs me!

Most Moving Experiences

Another tie - First, being stopped dead in my tracks when I realize I'm looking at a shattered girder from the World Trade Center in the American History Museum.

Second, same museum, realizing I had a tear in my eye as my daughter read a letter home from a WWII pilot.

Most Annoying Experience

Same museum - discovering they spend a lot more energy on pop culture than they do, you know, on history.

Best Day

Wandering the Mall from monument to monument, checking out all the new ones that have been added since 1989. The Korean War monument blew me away; the WWII monument is cool but over done. FDR's monument is cool but way, way, over blown. That's a lot of real estate to dedicate to one man, you know?



Best Forgotten Memory

I remembered why, when I lived in DC, I spent every spring with a camera and macro lens glued to my face:


Post Script

I promise to write again, later, to explain things like how we caught the barest edge of the immigration protest and what we saw, and how we managed to miss the Cherry Blossom parade and why (both are interesting, I promise)

< dream theater. | BBC White season: 'Rivers of Blood' >
Washington, D. C. Diaries, Days 2 thru N | 12 comments (12 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback
Damn, it's been a while by TheophileEscargot (2.00 / 0) #1 Wed Apr 12, 2006 at 08:30:13 PM EST
Last time I was in Washington DC, the only FDR memorial was the small block outside the National Archives. Always thought that was appealingly modest.
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It is unlikely that the good of a snail should reside in its shell: so is it likely that the good of a man should?
monuments to presidents by martingale (2.00 / 0) #2 Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 01:08:05 AM EST
I don't understand that. I can see a monument to a king or similar, because they actually pay for it, in a manner of speaking. But a president? What's that, a nobody whose only claim to fame is being elected by the people. Once elected, all he does is paid for by the people, with resources belonging to the people. Any actual work is done by civil servants. When he leaves office he's replaced by another nobody who does the same. What, exactly, does a president bring to the table, when we come right down to it?

Anyway, good for him. If I didn't pay for a monument to myself, I'd definitely want the biggest damn monument I could get.
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$E(X_t|F_s) = X_s,\quad t > s$

That's exactly what struck me as wrong about by ObviousTroll (2.00 / 0) #3 Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 02:07:10 AM EST
the FDR memorial - quote after quote about how he was doing the people's work and earning the people's trust and about how he needed to ensure that the people with the least got enough and so on.

In foot high letters.


--
You're no good to me dead. Even half-alive would be socially awkward. - Hugh MacLeod

[ Parent ]
don't forget by martingale (4.00 / 1) #4 Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 02:14:04 AM EST
People used to be bigger in those days. Just look at Abraham Lincoln's memorial. How they ever managed to fit his chair into the tiny White House is beyond me.
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$E(X_t|F_s) = X_s,\quad t > s$
[ Parent ]
You look so normal in that pic. by wiredog (2.00 / 0) #5 Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 02:25:27 AM EST
Just like a regular touron. Well, minus the goofy t-shirt.

How interesting can it be to miss a parade when it's raining?

Back in 86 I went to the Viet Nam War Memorial at about 2AM. It was very different than during the day. Only a couple of people there. Spooky.

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

Have you seen the Korean memorial? by ObviousTroll (4.00 / 1) #6 Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 02:39:40 AM EST
It looks like they took the disconnected ideas from the 'Nam memorial and combined them - the reflective wall + traditional statues, but rearranged them so that the wall reflects the soldiers.

Very evocative, even during the day. At night it must be quite eerie.

--
You're no good to me dead. Even half-alive would be socially awkward. - Hugh MacLeod

[ Parent ]
Never been to the Korean War memorial by wiredog (2.00 / 0) #8 Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 07:50:00 AM EST
Don't know anyone who fought in it. Only went to the Viet Nam memorial that night because a couple of sergeants in my outfit in Korea asked me to look up some names for them while I was on leave. So I got pictures of the memorial at night, with close up of the names of interest.

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

[ Parent ]
Korean war memorial by cam (2.00 / 0) #9 Fri Apr 14, 2006 at 06:29:05 PM EST
is the best of the lot of them IMO. The others can be too grand and dehumanising. You can feel the mud and cold on the Korean War soldier sculptures. The Vietnam wall is too abstract. It is important to remember that war involves hardship and bloodshed of humans.

cam
Freedom, liberty, equity and an Australian Republic

[ Parent ]
I think you're right - for us, and those who by ObviousTroll (4.00 / 1) #10 Fri Apr 14, 2006 at 07:02:36 PM EST
come after us, the Vietnam Memorial will have little meaning; but for those with a personal connection to those names on the wall, it obviously has a powerful impact.

The Korean memorial, though, works on so many levels - right down to the complaint that Korea is the "forgotten war" - even the memorial is made of insubstantial "ghosts" as it were.

That really struck me the next day when I went into the museum of American history and entered the "Americans at War" exhibit - a big chunk of it was Vietnam, but I never did find anything on Korea - and a lot more people died there than in Vietnam.

--
You're no good to me dead. Even half-alive would be socially awkward. - Hugh MacLeod

[ Parent ]
Korea tends to get forgotten in Australia by cam (2.00 / 0) #11 Sat Apr 15, 2006 at 04:48:38 AM EST
too as it was all regulars. Vietnam had conscripts so it filtered down more into the citizens conscience. Yet Australia committed squadrons, aircraft carriers, ships, infantry etc. It also did that while it committed assets to the Malayan Emergency.

Konfrontasi is a forgotten war in Australia too. Its effects still continue despite Indonesia democratising, Yudhoyono is playing Konfrontasi like politics at the moment with Australia. It doesnt help that Australia has been inconsistent on its position of refugees opening them up to criticism, but even so, this is classic Au-Indonesia Konfrontasi style politics.

cam
Freedom, liberty, equity and an Australian Republic

[ Parent ]
Yes. If you had posted that a week ago by ObviousTroll (4.00 / 1) #12 Sat Apr 15, 2006 at 06:26:10 AM EST
I would have been astonished; I consider myself well-read, but I had no idea that total UN casualties in Korea were 10x what the American casualties were till I saw the monument.

Then I realized most of what I "knew" about Korea came from M.A.S.H.


--
You're no good to me dead. Even half-alive would be socially awkward. - Hugh MacLeod

[ Parent ]
seconded wiredog's rainy parade comment by sasquatchan (4.00 / 1) #7 Thu Apr 13, 2006 at 04:34:02 AM EST
since I asked in the last diary ;)

Any clown conventions going on in town ?

And did ya'll wander around Rock Creek Pk, or the zoo ? See a Nationals game, or Caps game ?

Washington, D. C. Diaries, Days 2 thru N | 12 comments (12 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback