I was a bit annoyed earlier this week when I had to fight the early morning traffic to head into the city for a hearing. Of course as soon as I saw the Capitol my bitterness subsided. It is just a great view. Anyway, I had to get to the Hill early because this hearing was going to be one of the more popular ones, which meant there would be a long line to get a seat. In DC there is a whole industry in which you can pay someone to stand in line for you. Seriously, check it out here. When I wasn’t working for a non-profit association, I often employed a line stander (their billable rate was much cheaper then mine). Now that I work for an Association I use something called an Intern. However, this particularly morning would have required them to stand in line nearly 2 hours before work started. I loaded up my breakfast, a good Sudoku book, the newspaper, and my crackberry and decided to stand in line myself.
The good news is, they had opened the hearing room early and I was able grab a seat. The bad news is there were a lot of whacko’s at this hearing who felt the need to try and talk to me. (You know I don’t do well with crazies talking to me about conspiracy theories or big brother, etc) I love seeing the engaged citizen show up to a Congressional hearing, but why do they always want to talk to me? Literally as the hearing began I looked around and saw a lot of what I would consider extremist. I started to wonder, is it just this issue (Real ID) or is it me? Why do I feel like I am the only sane person in the room? Does that make me crazy? I started to think that perhaps I need to abandon this issue and move on to something different.
Anyway, the whole reason I started this post was to tell you about the CodePink lady in hearing. She was awesome. (CodePink people are always entertaining. Last year I saw one get arrested.) She showed up all in Pink. She had 37 pieces of Flair on her outfit; all with political statements on them. She had duck taped a piece of cardboard to her chest that said, “Healthcare Not Warfare” (Heck, who can argue with that). She then spent the entire hearing trying to get as close as she could to the people testifying and the CSPAN cameras. She had a small cardboard sign that read, “Real Expensive – Got $$$” and on the other side it said, “Real Security – Get Out of Iraq.” (Did I mention that this hearing had NOTHING to do with the war?). I was fascinated by the Pink lady. I thought it was amazing that she is so passionate about an issue that she spent 4 hours (the hearing lasted that long) just trying to get her sign in front of the cameras.
I am passionate about a lot of things, but I can’t imagine spending all that time trying to get my cardboard sign read on Cable TV. Frankly, I can’t even imagine what my cardboard sign would say.