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Women's March on Seattle 2017 - The Literary Exhibitionist
Women's March on Seattle 2017

So: this may well be the biggest global protest in history -- far higher than expected turnouts in every city in which it occurred. The flagship protest in Washington D.C. today is estimated at at least 500,000 people, more than double the expectation. Los Angeles is officially "well over 100,000," with organizers estimating 750,000 -- and if the latter figure is true, then surely the crowd in Washington D.C. was bigger. I can't find any estimate of crowd numbers in Manhattan, but the picture sure makes it look pretty fucking big. And in Seattle, the first estimate I heard of expectations was 40,000 -- which would have been crowded enough. By the time we were about halfway through the march route, a young woman on a megaphone told us all we were 130,000 strong.


They had a rather clever and simple way of counting too, at least in Seattle: handing a sticker dot to everyone. They would then know how many stickers were handed out at the end of the day. Mine just happened to be red, so I stuck it on my forehead like an oversized bindi -- that's why the dot on my forehead in the group selfie I took.

I had originally intended to walk the entire 3.4-mile route from Judkins Park to Seattle Center, but we all wound up agreeing that we'd stop once we reached Westlake Center, which made it, for us, a 2.6-mile march. Bear in mind I had already walked a couple of miles down to Judkin Park from home to begin with -- as did Shobhit, although he came a bit later. So he and I did a lot of walking today. And once we were at Judkins Park, there was at least an hour of standing around, and once everyone was filing out of the park, it bottlenecked to a pretty sigificant degree. The MC lady even announced they expected it to take two hours for the park to empty out. It didn't take us nearly that long, actually, but it did take the better part of an hour.

And at that point, Shobhit was separated from us. He left maybe an hour after I did, because he didn't want to listen to speakers he knew had been Bernie Sanders supporters, which he resents. But being in that huge crowd caused my cell service to disappear, so it was some time before we were able to text each other reliably again. As such, he wound up stuck on the east side of the park for some time, while we were reaching the northwest exit. I did say, though, that they should all be grateful Shobhit was not with us, because he would have tried his damnedest to corral us into more "efficient" directions to get through the crowd more quickly -- which, of course, misses the whole point of why we were all there today. He did do that a little bit later once he caught up with us, but Danielle was pretty diligent about not letting him push everyone around. I mean, there were two kids with them, after all.

Anyway, Danielle's #106 bus from the Renton Transit Center -- she smartly chose not to drive up -- arrived at the stop on Rainier Avenue under I-90 right on schedule at 9:17 a.m., and I was there to meet them. Danielle brought Morgan but left Rylee at home, as she was apparently not feeling well and Danielle didn't want to hear her whining all day. But she did have her friend Lisa with her; Lisa's aunt Jan; and Lisa's little girl, Kate.

Shobhit stunned us all by finding us before I could even re-establish text communication. Morgan had been standing up on some rocks lining a building's yard and he happened to see her as he was moving his way forward through the meandering crowd. So he actually did march with us most of the way -- and thus he'll get his precious Social Review point for the day, which I honestly think was the biggest reason he joined us at all.

There's not much else to tell about the event, except that it had lots of clever signs you can see by going to the Flickr set, and as always that can be seen by clicking the photos in this entry. And of course, I'm very glad I went. I read online the other day that "marching is good for the soul," and I think I'd have to agree with that. And I'm heartened by the massive numbers at all the marches across the country, which means they can't be ignored. I mean, Donald Trump is ignoring them anyway, of course. But I'm sure it makes him nervous. He should be.
positive energy please