Pow(d)er Struggle

In an application of Tactical Magic force analysis, Pow(d)er Struggle sought to reveal but a few of the invisible yet verifiable forces that typically remain concealed and dormant. The magical laboratory in question was a protest (against the inauguration of George W. Bush in San Francisco) in which hours of excitement were distilling into polarized angst between protesters and police. As the protest wore on into the afternoon, the activists grew less tolerant of the cops' efforts to herd and contain the protest, and the uniformed police were readily replaced with riot cops. With neither side willing to vacate the streets first, lines were drawn leaving participants on both sides flexing muscle and ego in preparation of what appeared to be an imminent clash. Although a simple binary analysis of the situation would claim that the forces present could be divided into Protester vs. Police, a more thorough examination revealed that several latent forces were unaccounted for. Among them were hunger, fatigue, and boredom. Having analyzed these latent energies, a Tactical Magician proceeded to activate said forces by introducing a box of donuts into the equation. By offering donuts to both protesters and police, the physical, psychological, and emotional climate underwent a rapid transformation. Although all who were present had not eaten for hours, the police and the protesters responded to the gesture quite differently. Many protestors welcomed the energizing snack and were invigorated by the humorous intervention, allowing them to alleviate built-up frustrations by laughing at - rather than battling - the officers. On the other hand, the police gazed longingly at the donuts, but their suspicion, pride, and hypersensitivity to the professional cliche barred them from indulging in the tasty treats. Recognizing the potency of the action, the commanding officer threatened to reward the dispensation of free food with an arrest if any more donuts were passed out. When asked if it was illegal to pass out food freely, the officer responded by stating, "Not for passing it out; for distributing it!" - a mysterious exposition in its own rite. Nonetheless, police and protesters alike soon departed the scene without arrests or further incidents.