It's Fleet Week here in San Francisco, something I was called upon to explain to my co-clerk this morning as she noticed -- with no small amount of alarm -- the fighter jets zipping noisily around the city. I'm not sure exactly what the point of Fleet Week is, so the best explanation I could come up with is "It's our version of the Soviet military marches through Red Square. And the Blue Angels buzz San Francisco for two days for some reason."
The whole concept of these fighter jets flying around outside the window is just very bizarre. To say nothing of the noise, the extreme close-ups, the shaking of the buildings, let's for a moment just consider the fact that San Francisco is probably the most anti-military of America's large cities. And let us not also forget the gratuitous waste of jet fuel.
But still, it's kind of neat.
Which reminds me of another advantage of working in the federal building: Protests. Today there was some kind of big "This time we mean it!" anti-war demonstration that marched its way past the building on its way to some damn other place. Last week, as Congress was closing its session early to get going on campaigning, a large banner appeared outside that read: "Nancy, stop funding war." But my favorite protest so far followed this week's DEA raid of a California medical marijuana facility, which invited a small group of extremely mellow demonstrators chanting "Heyyy heyyy... Hoo Hoooo... The DEA has got to go... Man."