suburban panhandlers and other interesting things

Vietnam memorial
Originally uploaded by coeruleus.
I've been panhandled alot. This weekend I had the extra special oportunity to be asked for money in the 'burbs. In the past, I felt it was kinda weird to see people sitting next to the on-ramp traffic lights in Hillsboro asking for money (for those of you on the east coast, these serve the same function as on-ramp ticket-booths on the turnpike in terms of getting traffic to stop and then hit the gas at a regular intervals soas not to interrupt the flow of traffic on the main highway). And yes, the incident at an Oakland gas station where a woman pulled up next to me while I was filling up the rental car at 6 AM asking for a 5-spot to help her get to her suburban job was also kinda weird. But going to an upscale suburban wineshop in Bethesda and having some well-dressed drunk dude ask if he could either a.) steal the car, or b.) get a ride to the next hotel was something new and unexpected. He really was aggressively panhandling (he wasn't just kidding), but it'd been amusing to see him sweat if he'd actually tried to steal my friend's car with Ms. Coeruleus aka "the strangler" sitting right behind him.

Otherwise DC was delightful, for many different reasons--one reason in particular involving close friends that I hesitate to broadcast over the internet, but it was truly delightful to me and Ms Coeruleus.

One thing I want to point out is the picture of the Vietnam War memorial posted here. I'd never visited it before, and going there last weekend was very moving. Seeing people standing in the cold, stenciling names, seeing others walk in awe, and seeing all those names, all those names.