President Lincoln was Shot Where?

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Traveling is always interesting. Sometimes too interesting.

When I’m on the road and go out to eat, I’m not looking for drama.

I want to dine in peace.

And not get in the middle of an international incident.

I am pretty sure the guy at the Subway in Chinatown was cursing the customer before us… but I will never know (I think he said “I am going to strangle your fish with a bar of soap if you get Sprite instead of water!!!”… but it was hard to tell… angry Chinese man spoke very quickly).

Chinese Subway.

Chinese Subway.

While I’m not sure what he said exactly, there was definitely a tone.

And almost an attack. Not sure who was going to attack whom, but it was about to happen.

I don’t care what nationality you are, if someone in your restaurant orders a water then fills the cup up with soda… you’re going to be angry.

Turns out, very angry.

Screaming and pointing angry.

Willing to do bad things with Lava soap angry.

Saying 14 consecutive Chinese curse words in a row angry.

But, lesson learned. Stay on the good side of the Chinese Subway owner.

And if you order water, get water (also, don’t eat items in the grocery store… the grapes aren’t free…).

My day in Washington D.C. started off innocently enough. The evil spawn and I were wandering the streets looking for a McDonald’s.

Since we aren’t completely stupid, we started heading in the opposite direction of people we saw holding McDonald’s sacks.

The good news is our plan worked. The bad news is it took us 40 minutes.

After we ate (if you consider “eating” at McDonald’s eating…), we again headed out into the city.

I think we were headed south, but just like with the Chinese cursing I may never know.

Before I knew it we were standing directly in front of Ford’s Theater.

As anyone who passed (or didn’t) junior high social studies, we all know President Lincoln was shot in Ford’s Theater.

It was a very surreal moment because while I have studied and taught this fact, I never expected to be standing directly in front of where Lincoln was killed (especially when I was basically lost and in a food coma from way too many hash browns).

As I glanced across the street, I could also see the Peterson House where they took the President after the shooting.

If I remember my history, I think he died there the next morning (I also remember something about a Cabinet Meeting being held there, but I digress… and possibly bore…).

As I stood next to the theater, I was torn.

Being excited to see where someone died seemed a little morbid.

But it is history, so I wanted to document our experience.

What better way than to take a picture of my daughter. As I focused the camera, I noticed something.

And once again (don’t forget my time at the Alamo!), I became disappointed in seeing history up close.

For you see, Ford’s Theater… where our 16th President was assassinated… is next door to…

… the Hard Rock Café.

You Can See the Hard Rock Flag Next to the American Flag.

You Can See the Hard Rock Flag Flying Proudly Next to the American Flag.

That’s wrong.

Just wrong.

That fact that you can see where Abraham Lincoln was shot… and then walk 20 feet and see a pair of Mick Jagger’s pants is just not right (picture will be added when I get home… or when my wife finds the camera cord…).

It gets better… or odder… across the street from the Hard Rock… the FBI Building. Somewhere, J. Edgar Hoover isn’t happy. Happier than the Chinese Subway owner, but not happy.

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6 Responses to “President Lincoln was Shot Where?”


  1. Sharon
    on Jun 30th, 2009
    @ 6:19 am

    If you haven’t already, you must read Sarah Vowell’s Assassination Vacation. It’s hilarious (and you seem to share her gift for happy digression).


  2. Diane
    on Jun 30th, 2009
    @ 9:51 am

    LOL at the Subway incident. I don’t blame the guy though. It always amazes me what people try to get away with.

    I think the juxtaposition of history and the modern world is true all over-the pyramids in Egypt and the coliseum in Rome come to mind. My mom saw both and was thrown by how close the old was to the new.

    Love McD’s hash browns. And french fries. Hence my new workout schedule.

    Off to the library to get Sharon’s book recomendation. I need to read something other than Harry Potter.


  3. Warren Purdy
    on Jun 30th, 2009
    @ 4:28 pm

    Yeah thanks Sharon – I may too, but then again I may forget all about it as soon as I…what was I saying? I live in a country (New`Zealand) that has no old – even compared to America. Our oldest buildings/schools are only about 160 years old tops. I watched a great film recently – Cassandra’s Dream with a great shot of London bridge and the gerkin in frame – seemed fine to me. Random thought – Is there anywhere left on earth that doesn’t have a micky d’s?


  4. Alan Beam
    on Jul 5th, 2009
    @ 9:44 am

    I was fortunate to visit Ford’s Theater years ago. Last summer I finally got to take the family and it was closed due to an upgrade. We also ate at Hard Rock and not only was it weird but the food wasn’t that good. Did you get your t-shirt from the many, many gift shops in the area?


  5. Angie
    on Jul 8th, 2009
    @ 9:00 am

    Funny, my family was in DC June 30-July 7 for vacation too. Never made it to the Ford Theater. But, we do have one tried and true vacation rule- absolutely no chain restaurants! Everywhere in DC food was great; service was lousy.


  6. The National Mall is a National Disgrace. | PrincipalsPage The Blog
    on Jul 27th, 2009
    @ 7:40 am

    [...] have decided to leave Ford’s Theater out of the discussion because I’m still trying to get the whole Hard Rock Café fiasco out of my [...]

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