SideWalk Ghosts / Interview 245: “The Patio Rats Convene”

From Left to Right, Patio Rat members Chris, Markus, Tasha and Vincent

“Please don’t make me think about the future…!” long pause “…bottom line, the people are too complacent and I just want them to wake up!” Chimes Tasha, spokesperson for the self-titled “Patio Rats” in their nightly gather at, yes, I’m here again, Starbucks.

My philosophy this evening: “Sit down, shut up and listen.”

And with hot chocolate in hand, that is exactly what I do as I review my day, one that has literally been a historical and political feast.

So I sit, listening, resting after a days outing with my family at the Ronald Regan Library, as I collate the data that my mind has absorbed this day.

Flashes of the Cold War, The Berlin Wall, the military build up of the eighties, the era’s patriotism and the economic boom of the Regan administration.

Now before I go on, I must clarify that this entry is not written with any political agenda other than to report of the friends I have met. But what is relevant is the fact that, without my influence, tonight’s discussion mirrors the very nature of the exhibits I am coming from… That being… “We the people.”

And in honor of the theme, I inaugurate this hour as the Patio Rats debates, “Let us commence the proceedings?”

Tasha cracks the gavel and with her opening statement, and the summit opens, “I’m disgusted with the government and how separated we are by the political parties right now.

They care so much about their own political rightness and their quest for reelection that they ignore the people. How dare they take our money, our time and our input and do nothing for us!”

The gauntlet is laid down and the debates heat up, no topic is loosed: we chatter politics, explore the effectiveness of movements like Occupy Wall Street and the wasted costs of the movement, we reflect on the current economy, taxes, the state of healthcare, and the negative affects of self-entitlement vr. the empowerment of a unified people.

Vincent steps to the podium, “It’s about personal ethics and taking responsibility for your life.

You make your own decisions and you won’t necessarily get everything you want in life. But if you choose to work for what you want, you can get it. We’ve all had hard times, but hard work pays off. Just don’t be and ***hole.”

He throws a stab at politics, “It’s like the movie ‘Dawn of the Dead’ (referring to the democrats).”

Markus addresses the floor in offering a plea to the citizens, “We are all going to get tired of the way things are, and we will do something about it. I think that one day we will all stand up and fight.

People will say enough is enough. They will wake up from the last twenty years of shit.”

Starbucks store management breaks our caucus, “We are closing now; you have to clear the patio.”

With this Tasha leaves the closing argument, “They want us to lower ourselves to the lowest common denominator so that the little guy feels like a genius, rather than to aspire to greatness.”

“Aspire to greatness,” Tasha quotes. To not settle for mediocrity… or to be blindly herded… or to allow ourselves to be stripped of our agency to grow our own lives.

The Patio Rats have convened, and in the ending of their nightly conference have pushed us to consider our aspirations and what we intend to do with them.

In leaving I have been sworn into the group, and I’m sure we will be hearing from them again.

Talk tomorrow my friends.

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