Tuesday, January 20, 2009
January 20, 2009 - A Day to Remember
I had errands to do. Small mundane duties in town that were time sucking pain in the ass mundane duties. The Post Office guy was less than helpful after I waited for fifteen minutes to ask why I had not received a package I was expecting yet. After fifteen minutes, "You have to go down to the Sanford Post Office, they handle street delivery for us and them." He gives me that "Sorry dude, sucks to be you" look and then looks past my shoulder anticipating the next person waiting fifteen minutes to be hopefully served and not disappointed..
Down to the grocery store to find the one ingredient missing for my big comeback as a cook. Damn! Not a bottle of Stout in the whole place. 20 kinds of high end lagers. 20 kinds of high end ales, but not one bottle claiming to be stout. Fuggit, I will improvise. And I rushed home to hopefully witness a historic event from 600 miles away.
Well I made it. With 2 minutes to spare. The small quartet or whatever they were were playing the last notes before Chief Justice Roberts was called upon to do his thing. During those few minutes the camera was focused on Barack and Michelle. Obama was doing his best imitation of somber and serious. I wonder if inside his mind, "Yeah Boy, I'm going to be the president, Can't wait. Let's go, oh I'm gonna be Prez. Yee Ha." And his stomach wound even tighter than he thought it could given how tight it has been for well, two years.
An awkward moment during the oath when Justice Roberts screwed up the oath for Obama to repeat. Barack hesitated (You know damn well he had it memorized)with a bemused look on his face. The Justice recovered and the thirty seconds many of us have been waiting for, hoping for, and yes even some praying for came to pass. "Ding Dong, the Witch is dead!!!!!!!" And all the two million munchkins bundled up in their winter best began to dance on the Mall.
As the camera panned out over the Mall, I was absolutely awestruck. I wonder if those claims of two million were understating the crowds I saw hanging off statues, poles, and literally dancing in winter coats. Millions of tears were shed, millions of cheers were said, and millions of people all across this nation were witness to an unequaled event in our history. Next time, we elect a woman.
I have all TV's on and NBC tuned in on the FM dial here in the office. I don't exactly know why, much of it has become just background noise. I stood still for the Anthem, felt the hairs of my neck stand up during and right after the oath, and now it is all just gilding the lily. Parades, Balls, gala get togethers will follow, but they do not matter. What mattered took less than 30 seconds.
As much as I have confidence in Obama to carry out his duties with due diligence, I know his election is just the start. He can point the way, but it is all us munchkins who will have to carry the burden. He cannot do it alone. Let's hope the good vibes and best intentions translate themselves through sweat and toil and will make us strong and self reliant again. Barack is just a man. We are the nation. It is up to us now.