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People Watching: the ultimate TRF vent

By Gloria Diaz

Check out Gloria's Blog — Edge of Gloria!

Fort Wayne Reader

2006-07-24


As I write this, Festival 38 is in its last hours. I enjoyed TRF this year, probably because I had the time to. There were events that I probably should have gone to (1964 The Tribute, the Village People) but I was in a low energy phase, and I didnít feel like standing for three hours among people I didnít know who were probably three sheets to the wind.

But I had fun at the festival this year. I almost won a Vera Bradley wallet, bought a Twinkie, froze it and brought it to the kind folks at the funnel cake stand across from Red Barn Elephant ears who fried it for me, and saw people I hadnít seen in a while.

The weather seemed to cooperate this year too. Except for a few downpours and a couple days where the humidity rivaled that of a Panamanian whorehouse (um, not that Iíve actually ever been in one, but I bet theyíre muggy) it was nice to walk around Headwaters Park and parts of downtown in early evening Daylight Savings Time which made it feel safer somehow.

I saved on parking by placing my car in a legal spot that hasnít been commandeered by the Parking Capitalists of Fort Wayne. Even though Iím overweight, Iím in better shape than probably 80 percent of people in this town in terms of being able to walk certain distances. Since I walk or jog five kilometers three to four times a week, parking my car about a quarter mile away from Headwaters was worth it to me to save a few bucks.

And from the looks of a lot of people at the festival, Fort Wayne needs to do a little more walking. No, make that a LOT more walking. If you come to TRF and you canít afford to eat at Food Alley, fear not! Here are some games you can play:

Comment on TRFóI did this on my blog (http://gloriathecolumnist.tripod.com/edgeofgloria) and had a blast. I took my digital camera and in most cases was able to upload my pictures and commentary the same day I recorded them. TRF is great for people watching, and if you have an opinion on just about everything, like I do, why not express it via a blog? Iíd like to thank the people who viewed my pages during the week of the festival. I noticed quite a bit more hits than usual.

Count the tattoosóA possible alternate title to the Three Rivers Festival could be the Tattooed Rivers Festival. Seems like everybody and their grandmother (except for me, of course) had something on their arm, back, chest, leg, ankle, or scalp. Yes, I saw a bald, tattooed fellow, and I did get a picture of him, but it didnít turn out. You can make up subcategories for this too: number of flower tattoos spotted, number of flame tattoos, number of name tattoos, etc.

People Trying Too HardóIn this age of celebrity worship, seems like everyone
wants to look like a star. I saw guys who tried to exude a Southern California wealthy hipster vibe who probably are still living with mom and are unemployed and not paying child support to boot. There were ladies who had too much makeup, too much jewelry, and wearing spike heels. Who are you trying to impress, girls? Oh, I forgot. Downtown during TRF is like a giant bar scene, only children are allowed. Thatís why the people-watching is so fun. Dressed up people, dressed down people, hicks, artists, the great unwashed, the innocent, the elderly, the jaded, the skaters, the directionless, the list goes on. Who WONíT you see at TRF?

So for those who claim TRF is too expensive, I say you need to make your own
fun. Bring some soft drinks from home and a sandwich or two if you like. Plant
yourself on some concrete and watch the human parade go by. Listen to the
music. Watch the competition, take in the art. Itís Fort Wayneís annual Fellini
film, only toned down a bit. You wanna be a star, donítcha? Then come on down.
People watching is free and youíll probably run into a friend or two. I know I did.

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