I’ve seen a lot of how-to-survive May Day posts in the local media recently. Or more accurately, I’ve been seeing a lot of headlines about them on social media and rolling my eyes about the whole thing. So here’s A Downtown Resident’s Guide to Survive May Day:
1) Are you a window Downtown? If so, congrats on being able to read, and thanks for choosing HA. There is a small chance someone will throw a brick at you and if that happens a decent chance that brick will smash you. That sucks, but your owner probably has insurance and at least you’ll get to be on TV continuously for the next few weeks and then in perpetuity ahead of May Day every year. There’s also a chance that someone will spray graffiti on you. That’s less bad, but still.
2) Are you a police officer? If so you’re probably getting more training than a nonsense snark blog post can provide. Please don’t attack peaceful protesters and try to use harm mitigation strategies on ones damaging property, or putting people in harms’ way if that happens.
3) Are you a protester? I’m usually against the bottled water industry, but I always recommend if you’re marching to have a bottle with you. It can be tap water, but those marches can be dehydrating. Maybe bring something you can eat like some trail mix or a Cliff Bar. Please don’t be violent to another human. If you’re going to smash windows or graffiti stuff, know the consequences of that ahead of time.
4) Are you worried about being stuck in traffic? Since May Day is the only day in Seattle where the traffic gets annoying, this is a reasonable fear. If you’re in your car, take alternate routes, I guess. Or wait for the marchers to go somewhere else. They’re marching, so they’ll pass. Give yourself some extra time and be patient with other people caught up in traffic.
If you’re taking public transit, just be patient. Give up your seat if you can since it might take a little longer. You know, bus stuff we already do, mostly.
5) Are you going to be outside Downtown, including suburbia, or like, anywhere North of the Montlake Cut? I guess just watch it on the news. If you do, maybe try to remember that if you’re seeing the same window smashed for the 5th time, it doesn’t make it 5 times as bad. Or watch something else? Maybe. There’s got to be some playoff basketball or a Mariners game. You probably have Netflix, so you can watch something on that. Maybe play a board game with your family.