Each year as the Saint Patrick's Day Parade comes and goes I think to myself I should swing into the city and watch the parade, time slips by and the years turn into decades. My son called Saturday afternoon to see if I wanted to tag along but I wasn't quite sure of my schedule so I said I might meet them there - yesterday I made the trip.
Brian told me the intersection where he and his fiancé would be positioned so I thought it would be fairly easy to meet up with them. I parked a few blocks away, intentionally picking the top level of a parking garage so I could get some stock photos for future blogs.
As I approached the parade it was decision time, the logical planner in me thought cutting north one block and east for another would be the quickest and least congested route. My party side went for the crowd to soak up some festive ambiance.
The smell of beer and cigarettes was thick as was the crowd, maybe 10 feet wide with a few watching the parade and others attempting to travel in both directions. The push was slow. My next half hour was spent flowing north squeezed into a sea of college girls & Gen-X'ers. Guess with people my age the logical side of the brain usually wins so they avoid the crowd.
About mid-block fists started flying and an opening suddenly emerged, lucky me...eye to eye with the big guy! His wife or girlfriend had hold of his shirt as he thrashed around trying to break loose, I started pounding his upper arm with an open hand yelling mellow out dude...he turned, grabbed his woman and started screaming in her face. For a few seconds I was paralyzed in thought, grabbing this guy now would surely escalate the situation. Fortunately he settled down as the push and screams from behind me started moving the crowd forward again. Reflecting back it dawned on my how ill prepared I was for action, I was wearing glasses! They could have broke...
Funny how times have changed, when I reached the mellow area I notice I was surrounded by what once may have been considered "Outlaw Bikers". All hanging in harmony - Hells Angels, James Gang, Hole in the Wall, Brothers of The Rock, the general population and Dan The Running Man.
After the isolated outburst I witnessed upon arriving the afternoon was quite civilized. Never did meet up with my son though, his cell went right into voice mail and I was stepping into the parking garage after the parade when he returned my call. Just as well, gave me a chance to watch as a silent observer and enabled me to get several photos I may have missed.