Blog by Sumana Harihareswara, Changeset founder

11 Jun 2001, 10:03 a.m.

Diary For the Damned

Hi, reader. I wrote this in 2001 and it's now more than five years old. So it may be very out of date; the world, and I, have changed a lot since I wrote it! I'm keeping this up for historical archive purposes, but the me of today may 100% disagree with what I said then. I rarely edit posts after publishing them, but if I do, I usually leave a note in italics to mark the edit and the reason. If this post is particularly offensive or breaches someone's privacy, please contact me.

I'm smelling East Coast smells. Takes me back to my childhood.

Not nearly enough -- proportional to what I want to say -- about Washington, D.C., day two of brainwane the Tourist.

On the Mall: How much neoclassical architecture does one city need?!

I mailed several postcards today.

Would you believe that there is a restaurant on Pennsylvania Avenue named Poli-Tiki? And there are all these weird very specific fusion restaurants. Italo-Austrian (Cafe Tinolo). Italo-Thai (Pad Roma or something). In California, we have very catholic fusion restaurants -- here, it's only two, two, two cuisines in one!

Today I tried to make sense of the connections among:

  • the Constitution/Bill of Rights/Declaration of Independence combo at the National Archives
  • Arlington National Cemetery
  • Timothy McVeigh's execution
  • The U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum
  • Dawn by Elie Wiesel
  • The White House, and a protestor (against nukes) keeping vigil across the street in LaFayette Plaza

I will say more when I can. For now: I've been thinking a lot about the question of the proper way to honor the dead. And the differences between Arlington and the Holocaust Museum strike me deeply. One tries to shout; the other tries to be silent.

Originally published by Sumana Harihareswara at