Obama's inauguration, the 1969 Vietnam Moratorium march, portable toilets, and IEEE: connecting the dots
All eyes on Tuesday will be on Obamaâ''s inauguration. And the inauguration parade. Behind the scenes at the parade, in charge of making sure the logistics go off without a hitch, is the parade director, 30-year-old Peter Gage. Heâ''ll decide where the president will walkâ''and will make sure there are enough portable toilets.
Step back to a critical Washington parade 40 years agoâ''the 1969 Vietnam moratorium. Behind the scenes, in charge of the logistics for the 500,000 person march and, indeed, worrying about the toilets, was John Gage, Peter Gageâ''s father. These days, John Gage, an IEEE member, is with Kleiner Perkins venture capital, targeting the problem of global warming, after spending much of his career at Sun Microsystems (IEEE Spectrum profiled his dream job with Sun here.) Organizing the 1969 march, he told Spectrum, was basically an engineering job. â''Itâ''s not hard,â'' he says, "but it involves toilets, you know, you have to have water. You have to have places for lost kids. You have to cap the meters so the cars wonâ''t parkâ''just simple organizational things.â''
Like his father, Peter Gage thinks like an engineer. Take a look at his breakdown of the parade logistics, including 8000 police officers, 120,000 metro passengers per hour, and 112 new light bulbs along the parade route, and 4100 portable toilets.
And yes, proud father John will be on the scene.