Tuesday, October 28, 2008

From the Front Lines Part VI

By now I am confident that I am on the right track with the Roman Numerals. Thanks for the help on that front.

Today I got started hella early. At 5:15 long before daybreak I roused and set off for an area University Hospital. We needed to get there ahead of the first morning nurse shift and the support workers shift. Early in our time handing out our leaflet on the economic crisis and the candidate a security guard came by in very official looking uniform.

SG: Whatcya all up to?
ZT: Helping folks think about the election a little. It's a week from today. Here, check this out (hands flyer) it explains the differences on the economy. Who are you supporting? Have you figured it out yet?
SG: Gotta keep my rounds going.
ZT: Cool man, no matter who you support, make sure you vote next tuesday.

A few minutes go by.

SG: Hey.
ZT: Good to see you again.
SG: Can I get another flyer.
ZT: Sure man. (hands a flyer).
SG: Actually. How about 2?
ZT: Here have 3. What 4.
SG: That'd be awesome.
ZT: {is puzzled}. Enjoy.

We handed out a few hundred leaflets. The rest was basically unventful. There were a few "thank yous" and a bunch of rude yutzes.

The real excitement came when I dragged my mom to an Obama rally in Chester PA.
We left the house, hit some traffic but made it there by 9:20. We had volunteer/VIP tickets since I spend most of my waking hours hitting doors. The rally was slated to start at 10AM. We were pretty late considering we didn't get into the area until 9:30 but there was still some room. Since we had the tickets, we were standing about 100 feet from the teleprompters. {here is a link to the inquirer's coverage}

The weather was my least favorite of all weather conditions. It was cold (about 34), very windy, and raining. It was just cold enough that the rain was sould chilling but not yet snow. At least we were with about 9,000 other folks. That really brightened the mood.

He said a bunch of clever things in addition to stirring and emotionally potent rhetoric.
  • John McCain has ridden shotgun as George Bush has driven our economy toward a cliff, and now he wants to take the wheel and step on the gas. [from Biden I think]
  • He was talking about tax cuts and asked how many made under $250,000 by a show of hands. Then he pointed out that 98% of small businesses make less than that as do 99.9% of plumbers.
  • A couple of you have these signs saying "stop global warming." This is probably not the weather to hold up those signs. I mean, I’m not into global warming either, but it’s a little chilly today.
  • He eventually addressed the issue of Fake v. Real Americans and pivoted to some of his themes from the 2004 address when I first heard him (I watched it with Rajiv, Sushil, and Will, I think):
Because despite what our opponents may claim, there are no real or fake parts of this country. There is no city or town that is more pro-America than anywhere else – we are one nation, all of us proud, all of us patriots. There are patriots who supported this war in Iraq and patriots who opposed it; patriots who believe in Democratic policies and those who believe in Republican policies. The men and women who serve in our battlefields may be Democrats and Republicans and Independents, but they have fought together and bled together and some died together under the same proud flag. They have not served a Red America or a Blue America – they have served the United States of America.
Here is a text of most of the speech.
A few misc thoughts.
Obama was wearing jeans, sneakers, and some sort of bomber jacket. Despite this I had to push away recurring thoughts of William Henry Harrison.

Obama got 9,000 out in a sleepy suburb with 36,000 people mid-morning on a weekday with horrizontal rain/sleet, very chilly temperatures, and plenty of mud. McCain canceled his rally this morning due to inclement weather. Either McCain isn't that tough or more likelt he was scared shitless no one would come to his rally. Either way, it was a beautiful thing to see so many Obama supporters out on such a rotten day. To our left was a African American man just begining college. On our right was an elderly white guy in a trenchcoat. His hands were clenched and he was shivering but he soldiered on in his Korean War Veteran hat. It felt like an honor to be in that crowd today. I hope there are many more to come.


At 10/28/2008 , Blogger bpt said...

Hat tip to ZST for guilting me into going to the rally today, and providing me with a VIP ticket. It was awesome!


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