Blanketing opinions that I'll probably regret soon.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

The Most Self-Segregated Park in America

I've been using Walter Pierce Park for about six years. If it weren't so close, I'd want to move, but through my daily use I'm continually struck by how self-segregated it is.

Pierce Park is north of d-bag central (18th St & Columbia Rd, NW), south of your National Zoo, and right behind my apartment:

From Google Maps, I provide you with Walter Pierce Park. Below are my descriptions of the map codes.

Urination: This is the alley that backs up to my bedroom window. When drunken D-bags from the bars on 18th & Columbia walk back to the Metro to retire to their suburban homes, they stop here to urinate at 3 AM. Usually groups of cackling hoochies with their blue-collared-shirt-and-khakis boyfriends.

Homeless 1: A few homeless guys hang out here simply because no one else uses this spot.

Dog Park: Full of dog-owning yuppies like me. Conversations usually include subjects from real estate to picking up shit to how annoying the fucking NoVA kick-ballers are.

Soccer Field: Latino men are the only ones who use this part of the park. Serious soccer games go down here, often starting at odd times like 8 AM on a Tuesday (!).

Kickball: About 4 years ago the kickball trend started sweeping the DC area, until at this point, there are swarms of them, all wearing matching t-shirts. They play on weekday nights, and take over this section of the park. And strangely, even though they all live in NoVA, they act like they own the place---sometimes glaring at me and my dogs as we pass. But it appears to me like a way for them to meet other singles, so I can't be too critical.

Cornfields & Deer: There used to be a few latino dudes wearing cowboy hats who tended corn fields back here (no joke) until the city ripped them all out. Now it's just a trash-strewn dirt slope. I've seen deer here on two occasions.

Gardens: People rent 8-foot by 8-foot plots to grown tomatoes here. Mainly used by ex-yuppies, ie, no longer young, but still urban and professional. They're the type that always start conversations with, "Well, when Marion Barry was mayor ..."

B-ball: Mostly African Americans playing basketball. I have seen a few white guys here, but they never make baskets.

Homeless 2: Again, no one goes here, so there's usually homeless encampments strewn about here. Just look for the smelly wool blankets and McDonald's trash.

Kid Park: If you are childless---and especially if you own a dog---DO NOT enter this gated kid park. DO NOT. Pierce Park has very strict rules that cannot be violated. Just trust me.
Damn right. Keep those nasty dogs out of the kid park.

Seriously brilliant post. Those kickballers are all over the Marie Reed field as well. I know it's not really politically correct and all, but as long as folks in congress are proposing fences, I'd like to see if they'd put one up between DC and Arlington.
It's weird. Every Adams Morgan local I've ever spoken to finds the kickballers to be completely annoying. Whenever I see them, I always think, "f'n NoVA kickballers". Then one day I spoke to one of them, and sure enough, she lived in Shirlington, or some fucking place.

Why do you suppose they inspire such vitriol among locals, Cuff?
I can only say that post looks like a lot of work. WTG on your blogging skills.
I think they're an easy target, especially since they all wear their uniforms out to the bars.

I have nothing against them personally, because as you say it looks like more of a dating service than anything else, but they're just so easy to ridicule. If I were the sort who hung out on sidewalk cafes drinking in the early evenings (kids keep me from doing that these days), I'd probably find them incredibly annoying.
Seriously, does anybody from DC play kickball? A, I'm with cuff on the fence between DC and Arlington, word. and B. Why can't the kickballers eliminate the ball and just kick one another?
Cuff is right, this is a hall of fame post. I find this park a little off-putting, since it's so racially and economically divided (the yuppie white parents at the kid park, the black guys playing bball, the latin guys playing soccer).
I wish I lived that close to Mama Ayeshas. . .I do however, have a nifty corner liquor store almost that close.
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