Three weeks ago on Sunday evening the Absurdist was at a cookout at a home on Spring Place Northwest in D.C. At about 8:00 as we sat on the front porch enjoying bratwursts and beer, we witnessed a D.C. National Guard Humvee, towing high-powered lights, pull up to the triangle formed by the intersection of Spring Place and Perry Place where Spring takes a turn north.
Three soldiers emerged from the Humvee and erected the lights, which ran off a generator in the trailer at the base of the light pole. As they were setting up they were joined by two D.C. cops who drove up in a MPDC van. The lights were set up to illuminate the entry to the alley behind Perry Place.
As we watched this scene unfold, the discussion turned to speculation about the purpose of this operation. The consensus quickly reached was that this was an effort to discourage drug dealing at that spot, prompted by the community’s complaints to the police.
Once the light was erected and shining on the alleyway, the soldiers and police officers stood around chatting for the next two hours.
At 10:30, the National Guardsmen tore down the lights and drove away.