Ending the Semester with a DC Movie Premiere

The semester is over! I turned in my last assignment, the semester long research paper totaling 50 pages, Sunday night after the Giants game. The feeling of completing such a task is in itself a great one, but having that be the final assignment for the term made it feel even better.

On Monday, in celebration, a group of us went to the DC premiere of The Waterhorse: Legend of the Deep, which is a kid’s movie about the Loch Ness monster and a boy, that will open on Christmas. I had never been to a movie premiere before and was excited when a picture of some friends and me was taken on the red carpet the theater had set up.

Admission, popcorn, and soda were free, and some of the cast and crew were at the screening including the director, producer, main character (Alex Etel who’s taller than he looks in the movie), and a few supporting cast members. Despite the fact that the movie was another typical kids flick (even though Maxim said it was as good as ET…c’mon it’s Maxim) the night was a fun one, and the experience was great.

Monday night was a great way to end a semester where I gained loads of experience at my internship and through writing a research paper and was able to witness much more than one could see anywhere else in America.

A Capitol Tour

The professor of our History of the Senate class was nice enough to take us on a tour of the US Capitol building two days after we had taken her final. Below are the pictures I took while there. Not shown are Senator Durbin whom I passed in a hallway and Senator Murray of Washington who was speaking in the Senate chamber about the farm bill. She started her speech with, “When people think of Washington they think of Seattle or Microsoft or Boeing.” I couldn’t help but chuckle because when I think of Washington I think of Seattle and Microsoft and Boeing and Starbucks. What I don’t think about are the state’s asparagus farmers…but now I will, thanks to Senator Murray. Anyways, here are the pictures.

The old office of the Supreme Court. John Marshall joked about why lady justice wasn’t wearing a blindfold that it was so dark she didn’t need one.

The old Senate chamber, where Webster, Clay, and Calhoun argued about slavery.

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The Rotunda

My favorite Senator, William La Follette

The Supreme Court from the Capitol building.

Exploring History

This past Saturday, a friend and I went to the National Archives. We weren’t expecting much more than a bunch of documents in drawers and the Constitution and Declaration of Independence, but what we found was a full-blown, interactive, museum type of atmosphere.

The Freedom Documents (Declaration of Independence, Constitution, and Bill of Rights) were in a beautiful rotunda and protected in glass cases with guards surrounding each one. Just seeing these original documents made myself feel like I was Nicholas Cage in National Treasure attempting to steal them to solve some mystery that history buried.

The National Archive also had an exhibit that they called the Public Vaults. In here you could find original documents of Lincoln’s telegrams to his generals or digital documents dealing with the sinking of the Titanic. You could listen to radio addresses from Presidents such as FDR or Truman and watch speeches like Bush Sr.’s “I don’t like broccoli” speech. In one section you could listen to secret Oval Office recordings that were made public after the President left the White House.

There was not enough time for us to explore the rest of the Archives, and certainly a whole day could be spent just in this one building. Nonetheless, what we did come across was quite an experience in and of itself.