G-20 in Pittsburgh, Tuesday Morning

Filed in Gather News Channel by on September 22, 2009 0 Comments

There were a few new things on my way to work this morning. The photos weren’t great because I was trying to take them from the moving car, but you get the idea. This first photo is of cement barriers all ready to go, lined up on the Boulevard of the Allies.

I guess that photo didn’t turn out too bad for through the windshield!

The most surprising addition were the tall black wire mesh screens installed along Schenley Drive. I’m sure they are to keep the people back, although a determined young person would be able to scale it. Also, while I didn’t get out and test it, they don’t seem all that sturdy. I didn’t even know we had such things in Pittsburgh. I’ve never seen anything like it.

Sorry for the windshield glare and the blurriness. There was nowhere to stop :)

This is a much clearer photo of the screens at the top of Schenley Drive. They stopped up there. It seems they are designed to keep people back from the road. I’m rather sorry I don’t have a way to get here on Thursday … it looks like it will be a madhouse. I like being in the thick of things.

The next most surprising thing were the new concrete barriers at the end of the Fine Arts Parking Lot. When I ride my motorcycle to work, I come right through that section to get to the motorcycle parking pad! I guess it was just as well that it was raining this morning. Tomorrow should be even more interesting. I wonder if I can take a photo while riding the motorcycle? Hmmm … probably not.

This next set of photos needs an explaination for people who aren’t familiar with the CMU campus and its traditions. The big grassy area in the middle of the campus is called The Cut. Don’t know why. Maybe because you have to cut through there to get anywhere. Each fall, one of the fraternities puts another coat of paint on The Fence. It used to be a skinny fence, but from all these coats of paint, it’s gotten fat and interesting-looking. Then the students camp out and protect their paint job. Traditionally, another frat will try to mess up their paint job.

This year, G-20 protest seems to have been combined with the usual Fence celebrations. Normally there are only a few tents and maybe one shanty-looking thing. This year there were a lot of wooden “buildings” with G-20 stuff written on them.

This is The Fence in all its multi-layered beauty. Not sure if “Bash Back” had to do with the G-20 thing or just something to do with the Frats. The paint job is messy, and I’m wondering if that was the original paint job or a “messed up” frat prank. I’ve seen them just pour paint over the fence to “paint” it.

This is the back view of part of the little “shanty town”. It looks like someone put grass on top of one of the buildings, and there are pieces of sod on the ground, too. I’m not sure what that’s all about, but I know that “green” building practices now are often including a roof covered with grass or other vegetation.

This is a side view from the side closest to Dougherty Hall. I wonder if there are sleeping students under that green tarp? They’ve done stranger things. You can see the shanties they made and decorated. Not sure what the hay is for. Seats? Covering mud?

This is the first shack. That monstrously huge man’s face is all over campus. I saw one peeking out a large window in the building where they have a lot of artsy stuff.

This was another shack decoration. If you look closely, in the upper left, some kind of wallpaper was ripped off. It’s pretty funny, considering it had butterflies, guitars and an image of a young girl. I wonder where they got this wood? LOL! Somewhat incongruous with the faceless blue image holding the flag.

I have no freaking idea what the black giant voodoo doll is supposed to be. The flag probably means something, but I’m too stupid politically to know what it means. They must have been having some wild Resistance party last night. There is a desk with posters on the front, too.

So that’s all the weird stuff for this morning. Stay turned for updates. So far, things are very quiet and I haven’t seen anything alarming on campus.

On the way home from work last night, though, in the heart of Mt. Oliver, I saw a white guy with a backpack and a small group of young back men yelling at each other. The white guy didn’t really look like he belonged and I wondered if he had any connection to the G-20. The young guys came up and started to physically harrass the guy, but I wasn’t able to stop and get photos. I would have if I could have done it. :)

This was on the door to my building last night as I left work. People aren’t too concerned about security, though. I really don’t think the security in place would prevent much of anything.

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I'm a middle-aged grandma who rides an 1400cc Suzuki motorcycle. I run a ferret shelter and a ferret club, and I'm way too busy.

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