You Say You Want a Revolution.

So me and my sister Buffy took our un-ironed selves down to the First General assembly of Occupy Wall Street at Washington Square Park last Saturday, Oct. 8, 2011.

Buffy made us two matching signs that read: “I Am The 99%” — this is her picture from before we dove into the gathering, standing at the famous Washington Square arch:

And this is her picture that showed up on the famous website Gawker when they reported on the event later that day:


(In case you can’t read the sign, here’s a close up:)

Her sign — I Am The 99% — means, of course, that we are of the 99% of Americans who did not rape our beloved capitalist system of the USA with fraudulent and criminal bank loans/steals, yet we are the 99% being held accountable financially and politically for the devastation that has ravaged our society for these past three years (and for generations to come).

This is the Occupier “wave”, the way we all signify that we like what the speaker is saying — raising our arms and wiggling our fingers — instead of cheering or clapping. It’s very restful, and makes you laugh when you see all those arms shoot up and all them digits flapping in the breeze. (There was no breeze on that day BTW. It was hot and  sunny, and Buffy and I were glad to use or signs as shade devises.)

A lot of people asked if they could take pictures of me and Buffy holding our signs. Did I tell you that Buffy is my identical twin sister and we both had  khaki pants and white shirts on? Yeah. Cute. And plus, we’re, like, old.

These guys (see below) were standing next to us right before the General Assembly began, and they asked Buffy for a pen so they could write “I Am The 99%” on their coffee cups, and hold them up to let their freak flags fly:

Once the General Assembly began,  we were asked to sit down in front so that the thousands in back of us could see. This is what I call my “Occupy Wall Street” neighborhood (the people I stared at for the next hour or so, during the speeches):

Buffy and I both thought this was the cutest guy in the neighborhood:

As you can see, Buffy and I were right in the front of the Assembly. We could hear the speakers just fine, but as the speakers were not allowed any amplification, we were part of the Human Microphone that, in a chorus of 200 or so, repeated every few words of speech so that it could be heard, and relayed, to the back of the crowd.

It was a HOOT to be part of a chanting crowd.

This is the guy (see below) from Egypt’s Tahrir Square who came all the way from Cairo to add his support to Occupy Wall Street — the things he said got a lot of “Like” signs, even though he mentioned revolution:

OK, you can’t really see Mohammad in this shot — but you can see the speakers facing us, and although I have a lot of photos of the scrum of photographers who were crowding the speakers area you can’t really get a good idea of how many media-types there were, snapping photos like crazy. HUNDREDS. Maybe dozens. About 40.

Now, I haven’t been to Zucotti Park since it was occupied, but I know Zucotti Park and it’s nothing even close to a “park”, by the way. Even in the best of times it’s a shitty paved plaza with some crappy potted trees, so don’t worry that it’s being a green space that’s being trampled to death.

I’d love to see how it’s been humanized, colonized by My People.  I want to go down and hang one day soon. You too!

Come on down!

We Are The 99%.

We’re Too Big To Fail.

10 Comments, RSS

  1. Way to stick it to the man Vivian! Protesting is a daily occurrence here in France so as soon as I can understand what everyone is saying and read the signs, I’m in on something. I’ve never been to a big protest in my life, sad but true. Vive la révolution!

  2. Deborah

    Be careful what you wish for! I’ve been mentally calculating how I could leave Thurs. & come back Mon. I’d love to see a convergence of us all.

  3. Shelley

    Thank you for being there, Vivian and for sharing it with us.

    WE are the 99% ~ WE’RE too big to fail.

    That says it all doesn’t it?

  4. We’re so used to being poor up here in rural Maine that this recession almost seems like business as usual. Almost.

    Greed is so last century. Thanks for representing, Vivian. Yet again you demonstrate your general awesomeness in a specific way.

  5. Hooray for you! I’m so excited that there’s finally an uprising, and appreciate you taking the time to go there to stand up and be counted. Thanks too, for sharing the experience with the rest of us. Of course, I am the 99% too!

  6. Tracey

    I did the Wednesday night march two weeks ago, and ended up next to a Chinese news crew. I think it is important that older, “normal” looking people to be seen as supporting the occupiers. I’m glad Buffy make the media outlets. Unfortunately, I have to work on Saturdays.

  7. Rachel

    I am so excited to read this. It certainly felt like being there. And several of my fFriends from Quaker meeting have been joining Occupy San Diego. Your signs are great and so well engineered. Thanks to Buffy for her participation. The WAVE that you mentioned, is American Sign Language for Applause. It is not new to the Occupy groups, but a great use of the movements by the MOVEMENT.

    BTW, I have just seen the movie The Way starring Martin Sheen. It is a wonderful story with humor, heartbreak and redemption and great photography of the Pilgrim road to Santiago de Compostella. It is worth the time and effort to see a movie. Which is my highest praise. *You dont choose a life…you live one.*

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