Aug 30, 2013
Yun and I like the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens. In fact, we are members. The joint is very close to our apartment, so we have easy access. I noticed something odd that happens there though. There is a big beautiful field with rows of cherry trees on either side. Everyone that comes into the gardens, and I do mean everyone, brings a little blanket with them so they can sit and rest a while in this field. For some strange reason, you can sit on the grass but you can't sit on a blanket. There are 2 guards, whose sole job is to go around and tell people they can't sit on a blanket. The problem being, there's no sign anywhere telling you this important fact. There is, of course, an easy solution to the situation. You could have signs at the 2 entrances saying, you cannot sit on a blanket anywhere in the gardens. The person who sells you the ticket at the entrance, could also tell you about the blanket policy. Or, the guard, who takes your ticket as you enter could also tell you. But that is not how things work at the Botanical Gardens. There is also a second solution. Let people sit on frigging blankets. Everyone and their mother seems to want to do it. BUT NO, they have to have these 2 poor guards go around telling people as they are all relaxed and lounging on their blankets. "Hi there, I am about to tell you something stupid so don't get mad at me, but can you roll up your nice clean comfortable blanket and can you take your one week old baby and lay him in the dirt. Thank you." They don't actually say that, but they might as well. Anyway, my point is that this situation seemed to me like a microcosm of big governments. People having no ability to make a change to fix something that isn't working out so well. I'm sure the workers are told: "this is the way we've always done it, don't rock the boat, you can't fight city hall." The fact of the matter is, I don't really care about sitting on blankets or grass. It's just that when I am relaxing and drawing there, I have to see the look on people's faces as this scene unfolds over and over again. I've come up with an idea. I want to take a large blanket and sew it to the bottom hem of my t-shirt. It will be like a long wedding dress train, trailing behind me. Technically it will be an article of clothing. As I get to the field I will spread my t-shirt blanket train out on the grass and sit down on it. The guards will be all flustered. Is it a t-shirt or is it a blanket? If they ask me not to sit on the blanket, I will say it is NOT a blanket but it is my t-shirt train. Lawyers will get involved. The story will make all the newspapers. People will take sides. It will escalate. This is how wars start. If you look at all the trouble in the Middle East, it can all be traced back to a little situation just like the one I am describing. So I say, Let the people sit on the stupid blankets.