In a completely out of character move my girlfriend and I decided to attend Jon Stewart's "Rally to Restore Sanity" at the National Mall in Washington D.C. on a whim.
We booked a hotel and left on early Friday evening. The trip overall was a disaster and while I won't get into all the details because I don't want this website to ever become all about me I will add one quick personal note. When I say the trip was disaster, I don't mean "bad weather and traffic", I mean it's "midnight in Pennsylvania I have work in nine hours and we just hit a deer" disaster.
Now I really wanted to do a review of The Rally. I really did. I even started taking notes on my phone of things I wanted to mention during this very post but reality quickly set. It became apparent to me and several thousand others that Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert completely underestimated their ability to draw a crowd. There was an estimated 200,000 - 250,000 people there but I can tell you from being amidst the crowd it felt like millions.
There was approximately 5 "big screens" but it wasn't enough. The sound system used was not loud enough either and on more than one occasion the crowd dominated the noise by chanting "louder" and "turn it up" however it did little to affect the outcome. You could barely make out what the Guest Speakers were saying or singing and the pre-recorded video's might as well have been on mute.
The highlight of The Rally became sign watching. People dressed in costumes with humorous or pithy signs were everywhere and I made note of some of my favorites. These include:
- "I Could Be Wrong"
- "I Support a Variety of Things."
- "Give Us This Day Our Daily Dread."
- "Browndomly Searched"
- "I'm a Little Annoyed But I'll Get Over It!"
- "Bring Back Pogs"
- "Free Weezy"
- "My Feet Hurt"
- "Atheists For a Moral Government"
- "The Civil War Was An Inside Job"
It needs to be said that The Rally was attended by some of the nicest people imaginable. An elderly couple showed my girlfriend and me around and took our photo's in front of some of the most well known Washington landmarks. Furthermore I have never felt more comfortable being squeezed into a train with a group of strangers before and I doubt I ever will again.
I really wish I could say more about the content of The Rally but I can't. Comedy Central, Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert and Washington were not ready for the huge crowds and it showed.
I may look back at this one day and tell my kids "I was there" but I sure hope they don't ask me what was was said.