Eyes wide shut

Sunday was truly a day of enlightenment. Not because the Dalai Lama addressed people about the benefits of eternal compassion and love, but because of how Torontonians acted at the event. First off, anytime you combine such a diverse cross-section of people, feathers will get ruffled. That is a fact of life, ask Tootie. However, this event helped show some of the huge issues I have with the tee-dot.

First off, the street car ride down was a goat rodeo. People who haven't used the TTC for years were attempting to get to the Skydome to be apart of the spiritual event. Obviously, some of these people had questions. The bastard streetcar driver ignored questions, and went so far as to verbally assault a mentally handicapped teenager, with hearing aids. "How many time do I have to tell you? I don't go to the Skydome!" More and more people took offense to this rude son-of-a-bitch, but nothing phased him. He was content to be a prick.

As we walked towards, we saw a familiar site. The SkyDome with huge tentacles comprised of people, standing angrily waiting to enter the stadium, jetting out for what appeared to be miles. Obviously, with 30,000 people there are going to be some delays, especially when dealing with the safety of such a respected figure. The cold winds, and rain didn't help. Arriving at 2:15, we foolishly expected to able to get in before the start time of 3:30. Ignorance is bliss. The lines wrapped around the SkyDome, like the horrible armband tattoos guys in Credd ripoff bands seem to love.

We walked to our assigned gate, and truly, we couldn't find the end of the line. It was like walking through the tree maze in the Shining, I mean, the Shinning (herohill doesn't want to get sued). As we attempted to get our bearings and get out of the rain, a nice lady informed us that "people have been waiting for hours, get to the back of the f*&king; line." "We are trying to find the back, and get our bearings." "Get them at the back of the line." You could feel the compassion as she treated ushered us to the back of the bus.

As we stood in line for over an hour without moving, we were told that the doors didn't open at 2 as indicated, and that they wouldn't open until after 3:20. Nothing says respect for people, and for the Dalai Lama like delays. As the lines got longer, people's patience got smaller. As the SkyDome continued to suffer from its constant case of HEADUPASS, elderly women in their Sunday's best froze as umbrellas were ripped by the wind. People began shoving in line, and scalpers continued to hawk their tickets. I watch as a young lady tried to buy a 20 dollar ticket, and the scalper said... "60 bucks." "I don't have that much money....what sho..." and realizing she couldn't pay the piper, he left her in mid-sentance. Surely, we were all reaching Nirvana.

It was a very discouraging situation. A gathering of peace, and spirtituality turned into an exhibit of anger, frutsration and consumerism. Fittingly, I saw one smile in the entire line-up. A young Tibetan monk, standing in traditional dress, without an umbrella, waited at the back of the line, with a look of pure enjoyment. He couldn't control the weather, the lines, or the frustrations of the crowd. He relished the chance to hear his spiritual guide speak. I think a lot of Toronto should have taken that as the message to leave with.


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