Thursday, August 04, 2005

The perennial guilty pleasure arrives with a boom

A sonic boom, that is.

Good god, I don't care if they are a symbol of war, if they scare my friends' cats, snarl traffic, piss off locals and create one big pointless diversion. They are the best pointless diversion I've ever seen -- I still remember my first summer solo in Seattle, when I leaned on the rail of my apartment building's rooftop deck and watched them fly over the neighborhood. Our building was the tallest in the city, so the squadron used it as a marker to make their turns; they flew so close I could see the pilots in the cockpits.

Today, they came straight over Broadway while I was driving, accompanied by a little Red Baron plane that managed to hold its own. Everyone was stopping in the middle of the road, craning their necks or pulling out camera phones to take pictures as they turned on the smoke and shot over Capitol Hill.

Trust me: I know it's anathema to all that makes me an upstanding antiwar activist -- but against my better judgement, I still get goosebumps whenever I hear that telltale roar coming closer. I feel like a little kid again, the same one who wanted to learn how she could fly a few feet from another plane going 100 miles per hour. Guilty as charged, I'm afraid.

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