Hubbard birthday party? We were so there. Welcome to the Congress Plaza Hotel, right in downtown Chicago. We had some angry Scientologists right there waiting for us! Chicago DSA Rebecca Cusano was looking very grouchy and dropped an F-bomb and some other profanity at us. Someone claimed they'd overheard Rebecca on the phone complaining about how she'd called 911 and the police hadn't even bothered to show up. Having apparently reached a dead end there, she continued worked her phone and appeared to be complaining to the hotel staff. (Doorman? Valet? Security?) I don't think Rebecca has ever had any sort of real exchange with any one of us; the most I ever see her do is 1-sentence insults. Meanwhile, her husband Domenic Cusano was also looking like he had a major burr in his saddle, coming out to talk and argue with protesters, slinging the odd insult, and generally being negative. (This is the same guy who was so keen about sending flowers to a protester's grandmother - click me for info.) Someone else said Domenic was brushing against a protester and/or lightly bumping them. I've never heard of him doing that before, so I'm not sure if it was just accidents or him trying to provoke something. Eventually, a police officer did show up, probably a good hour or so after we arrived. Now, ironically, there was another picket going on at the hotel, maybe a half-dozen people in the middle of a labor dispute. And they were milling around the sidewalk a lot closer to the front door than we were. Anyway, with those other protesters obviously being in the clear, I think the Scientologists were going to be hard-pressed to argue that we were doing something illegal. Not that they didn't try anyway - I guess the lies that they cooked up this time is that we were blocking the sidewalk and screaming in people's faces. But it didn't fly. The police officer just talked with someone inside the building, then with the hotel doorman (to get a neutral opinion?), and then with us. He reiterated some rules which we were already following (e.g. keep sidewalk clear) and left. So we went back to doing our thing. Saw some Scientologists, but not too many - so few, in fact, that I'm guessing they were entering the building from another location. The stats couldn't possibly have crashed that low. That's okay, though, cuz we scored another successful demonstration for the good guys. Nice job, everyone who attended! I was proud to be out there with you today.