Wednesday, September 01, 2004

The Running of the Jackasses

The northern Spanish city of Pamplona is famous for it's annual running of the bulls, where they allow crazed bulls to run up and down the street terrorizing the place. Sounds like fun, doesn't it?

Well, New York never likes to be outdone by anyone, so yesterday we had our own special event, the "Running of the Jackasses" (historical note: the Democratic Party's mascot is a donkey ever since former Democratic president Andrew Jackson was called a "jackass" by his opponent).

Today, the Republican convention was well underway in Madison Square Gardens with the Republicans giving speeches, patting themselves on the back, and other sorts of feel-good activities. And, since most of the jackass protesters couldn't figure out how to get past the cops and into Madison Square Gardens for themselves to join in the fun, they decided to create some "fun" out on the streets for the rest of us.

One band of jackasses decided to chain themselves together, while another band decided to try lying down in the middle of the road (bad idea in New York: good thing the cops were there to arrest that second bunch of idiots before some crazed taxi driver could run over them). More jackasses decided it would be fun to set garbage cans on fire. All in all, a good day to stay out of town.

I took a drive through part of Manhattan yesterday and the place looked like a war zone - cops on every street corner I passed with pylons and barricades up blocking lanes.

In the end, some of the cops got the hang of the "running of the jackasses", using plastic netting to herd the brain-dead beasts together so they can be loaded into paddy-wagons, and herding them down side streets where other cops were waiting.

In Pamplona, even though the bull may put up a fight, the matador always end up winning in the end. So, in keeping with good Pamplona fashion, the cops ended up winning the first New York "Running of the Jackasses", with almost a thousand jackasses arrested by the end of the day. The final score in yesterday's run: NYPD 1000 and jackasses 0.

More to come tonight? We'll see...