For some reason, they sure like to throw the word “festival” around in DC pretty loosely. I have never really gone to any of the so-called festivals since I moved here two years ago. I’m sure all three of you that read this are protesting that I did, in fact, attend Shamrock Fest back in March. My response would most likely be that first of all, it’s a “Fest,” so fuck off. Secondly, it was an excuse for hordes of Northern Virginia “Irish” to get drunk in a parking lot. Fortunately for all of us, that turned out to be a lot more fun than it sounds. And yet, it was so much more than the Cherry Blossom Festival will ever hope to be.
Sure, they can claim to have a parade and fireworks and a 10 miler and a “lantern lighting ceremony.” But come on, people, we all know what this magical event of the District amounts to – a ton of disgusting tourists walking around in jorts, clogging up our Metro, and taking pictures of trees. Yeah, that’s about it. Fat people from the Midwest throw on their best Mickey Mouse sweatshirt, grab their fanny packs, and stroll out to take some shots of that glorious Tidal Basin. “Aren’t the trees gorgeous?” they ask no one in particular. Of course they are, but your cankles aren’t. Do you not have trees in Missouri? Did you really need to come out here to walk around our city, come into our restaurants, ask us ridiculous questions, and then tip ten percent? And why are you so obsessed with not having anyone in your shot? You do realize that there are hundreds or even thousands of other people surrounding you. I’m not sure if you can sell the story to your bridge club back home that you went to DC to see “them pretty trees and there weren’t no souls around nowhere!”
By far the best part of the entire thing is the parade, though. It’s apparently where talent and dignity go to die. Part of me almost wants to go just to see if people show up to watch it. Have you even seen the list of “celebrities” they have this year? It’s gloriously pathetic – Keke Palmer, Mark Indelicato, Kathy Sledge, and Anwar Robinson. So we have a girl who made a movie that Starbucks sold, a gay elf from Ugly Betty, one fourth of a disco girl group, and an American Idol reject. That’s sheer hotness. Was Fairuza Balk not available?
Seriously, there are so many better things going on in DC. Head out to see the Nationals play in their brand new stadium. Check out one of our millions of museums, or see a show at Warner Theater or National Theater or the Kennedy Center. Go shopping in Georgetown or catch a phenomenal and breath-taking independent film at E Street. But please, for the sake of my sanity, do not go to a month long festival of looking at trees.