A Final Tour Downtown

Our parade of visitors continues -- my sister Lisa and her daughter Jayde came to stay for several days and take in some of the sights. Unlike other D.C. area residents I know, I have yet to get tired of seeing the same landmarks over and over again, much like I don't get tired of wearing the same clothes several days in a row.

When I was eighteen, I made a friendly bet with Thomas that I could wear my old Spin Doctors t-shirt for 30 consecutive days. I don't know exactly what possessed me to make the wager.

Perhaps it was the same thing that possessed me to see how long I could hold my finger in a glass of ice water (it goes numb after only a few minutes and it's easy after that -- but it kills when you remove it from the water and blood starts flowing back), or the thing that possessed me to see if I could hold my head out the car window at freeway speeds for 30 miles on Halloween night in the Pacific northwest (it was cold enough to make creative snotcicles).

That doesn't have much to do with my sister's visit. Incidentally though, I didn't make it the full 30 days wearing the Spin Doctors shirt. My girlfriend vetoed the contest after a couple weeks. Just like she vetoed the contest me and Thomas had to see how long we could drive with the heater on on a 90 degree day -- with her in the car.

This is just one of the many reasons I dumped that girlfriend and married Shannon. I know she'd support me in any and all juvenile wagers I undertake.

So, back to my sister's visit. On Day 1 we visited the obligatory downtown D.C. sights. It was warm, a soft breeze moved the heavy air pleasantly, and I caught Savannah and Jayde in this photo I call "S5000491" (I'm not very creative).

We walked past the National Archives and saw the line was really, really long. We decided since we'd seen "National Treasure", we'd basically already seen the Declaration of Independence (and beyond that, we knew how to steal it), so we kept walking.

When we arrived at the Washington Monument, Savannah closed her eyes in quiet reverence and embraced the massive tower. The odd couple in the background embraced it with their bums -- I decided to deal with them on a "don't ask don't tell" basis.

We strolled past the White House, listened to a guy jam on the electric harmonica on a corner (after about 10 minutes and 50 cents out-of-pocket, we realized he only knew one song... the charlatan), illegally soaked our feet at the World War II Memorial (as seen in the contraband photo leading off this entry -- that photo doesn't leave this room... er, this, uh, internet), and hung at the Lincoln Memorial.

I don't think people under age 25 and over age 8 should be allowed there. Every time I go, some middle-schooler is trying to read the Gettysburg Address out loud and mispronouncing "country" or "field" or asking aloud if Abraham Lincoln is really ensconced in that big stone statue. Except of course they don't know the word "ensconced", so they piece together the idea using words they know, like "fart", "cheesburger", and "Shakira".

As Savannah and I were enjoying the view from atop a stone pillar at the base of the Lincoln Memorial, a bushy-maned prepubescent manchild strutted beneath us, cleared his nasal passage loudly, and spit the results onto the pavement. "Why that boy spitted?" Savannah asked. I almost told her that the kid has a brain the size of an acorn, he has low self-esteem and he's using a loogie to compensate for it, and he'll probably do some jail time before he's 20. But instead I gave the kid the benefit of the doubt and told little Sue he was lactose intolerant and had just drank a carton of 2%.