Navigating the City
I have a confession. I hate craft beers. I can’t stand IPAs, bitters or any of the sour syrup served at the hundreds of uber-hip bars in my hometown Seattle.
Don’t get me wrong. In many ways I’m very Seattle. I wear skinny jeans, designer T- shirts and fairly cool eyeglasses. In fact, if I wear an annoyed expression I could pass for a liberal.
So what beer do I like? Ice-cold Bud Light served in an ice-cold pint glass. And no, I’m not paid to say so.
I have another confession. I never drink at home. It’s like kissing Rachel Maddow. It just violates the laws of nature. I prefer the energy and conversation—with friends and strangers—of a good, all-American, friendly neighborhood bar.
Which brings me to my trip to Coeur d’ Alene, Idaho.
We in Washington State are under the rule of Governor Jay Inslee. He’s so left wing he flies in circles with an IQ equal to that of a toilet plunger. He ran for president in the Democratic primary but even other crazy leftists said, “Hell no.”
Dear Leader has kept bars, restaurants and most businesses in Washington closed well beyond a reasonable amount of time.
So for three months I’ve binge-watched Netflix, got fed up with Neil Cavuto and had to watch my wife take ballet lessons by Zoom three times a week. She bought a portable ballet bar. She parks herself in front of the bar and hangs on for balance.
I decided I needed a bar, too. And do the same.
Idaho or Bust!
We packed overnight bags and merged onto I-90 for the four and a half hour drive to our deep red neighbors to the east. We travelled through the normally fun and friendly eastern Washington counties, now sad with closed businesses and empty streets.
Then we arrived. “Welcome to Idaho.” The change was immediate. It smelled like happiness and liberty. The sun shined a little brighter. My heart swelled with excitement like my first day at Hogwarts.
A cartoon blue bird flew through my open window, landed on my index finger and chirped “You’re among conservatives now. This way to Bud Light!” and flew off. I followed with tears streaming. My wife pretended not to see or hear my little bird friend.
We parked at the hotel, checked-in, dropped our bags in the room and took the elevator back down to the lobby. All that took 4.7 seconds. Give or take.
I gingerly entered the hotel cocktail lounge as if I were doing something wicked like walking into an opium den or one of those Juarez donkey shows. I had forgotten how to behave, what to do, what to say.
There were people seated at the bar without masks or gloves. Dear Leader warned me that meant certain death within minutes.
Finally my wife took charge, “A pint of Bud Light for him and I’ll have…” That’s all I heard. The rest was static.
Soon I was face-to-face with my sunshine-colored, chilly little friend. After a couple of “how ya beens” and “I’ve missed you toos” I promptly made him disappear. Worried he might be lonely I sent down a few of his friends.
What followed were two days of the starkest contrast between red and blue states I’ve ever witnessed.
In Coeur d’ Alene the restaurants, bars and shops were full—yes, full—of people talking and laughing. We walked through a crowded street fair with music, food and crafts. With the exception of some vendors there were no masks, no gloves, no social distancing. You know, normal human behavior.
Seattle was, and still is, the polar opposite.
The handling of the pandemic by the states has not been fifty shades of grey. Generally it has been black or white. Each governor reads the same script about the COVID-19 data, yet Republicans for the most part opened more quickly and more freely than Democrats. In the case of Washington State, by a longshot.
I wondered why. Then, I remembered a fascinating life event I experienced over 20 years ago.
An in-law (now ex) had inadvertently joined a group that was a well-known cult. We hired a deprogrammer, or exit counselor, who held a doctorate in theology. He told us to rent a remote cabin where we would meet and talk with our in-law.
The cult members caught wind of our meeting and tried to prohibit my in-law from attending. There were constant phone calls, surprise visits to his home and attempts made to discover the location of the cabin so they could disrupt our efforts.
The exit counseling was a success and afterwards I asked the counselor, “Why did this group spend so much time and energy trying to keep my in-law as a member? After all, he doesn’t have much money.”
I will never forget his response: “Never underestimate the dark desire in some to control the lives of others.”
On that day I vowed I would never attempt to control another person’s choices, decisions or life. I see cartoon birds in my car. I don’t have any business controlling other people’s lives.
The implementation of liberalism requires heavy-handed control of our lives by controlling our money, firearms, speech, media, education, elections ,and core belief systems.
Then a virus from China arrived on our shores and liberals smelled an opportunity for even more control.
On Bernie Sanders’ website Jay Inslee said, “This has always been an economic opportunity … we should not be intimidated by people who say you should not use this COVID-19 crisis to peddle a solution to climate change.”
Am I implying Dear Leader extended the lockdown for his own political gain at the expense of hundreds of thousands of jobs and the ensuing financial disaster?
Yep. Never underestimate the dark desire.
So, we reached the end of our two day visit to Coeur d’ Alene in great spirits. It was time to say farewell to beautiful country, friendly folks, mask-free open bars, restaurants, and shops. It was also time to return to Seattle with house arrest, spent heroine needles, virtue-signaling masks, thousands of male, and female Karen’s and socialism.
Returning to Hell Fire
Within 48 hours of returning home, the riots began with assaults on innocent people, the burning of cars and looting of department stores leaving behind countless millions of dollars of damage and a further delay of a return of jobs and normalcy. Like two schoolgirls with a crush the far-left Seattle mayor Jenny Durkan and Dear Leader publically gushed their admiration and support for the rioters and withheld any reasonable police action to protect property or lives.
Then, surprisingly, Inslee “The Benevolent” handed out a small morsel of freedom. He moved our county from Phase 1 to a newly-created Phase 1.5.
What were the 1.5 rules? As a conscientious citizen I went to our friendly neighborhood bar to investigate. I also looked forward to seeing my little Bud again.
Upon entering the bar I saw the owner’s brother, a strong patriot and ex-military. I asked him about the 1.5 rules. He held a sheet of paper listing comical regulations detailing social distancing, masks and prohibition of sitting or standing at the bar.
Then with the flourish of Nancy Pelosi at a State of the Union address he ripped the paper into confetti and said, “Screw that shit.” I almost gave him a big, sloppy, Wuhan wet-market kiss, then remembered he possessed the skills to kill me. I settled for a hand shake and a smile.
And like my wife in ballet class we parked ourselves in front of the bar and hung on for balance.
One guess what I ordered.
They were out.
It was still the closest to fun we’ve had in Seattle for a quarter of a year.
Final confession: I’ve never attended Hogwarts. For political reasons.
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