Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Hillary*

* I've given up on a "Super Stuff" post that covers all of the super stuff I didn't cover before: Super Bowl Sunday, Hillary Clinton, Super Tuesday. There's just too much to say. So I'll just start with Hillary, and politics, and my "endorsement," and finish the rest later.

On Super Bowl Sunday, Hillary Clinton was speaking at nearby Augsburg College. (Obama had been in town the day before, but I was working so I couldn't go.) I love going to campain stops, no matter the party. In the last two presidential elections, I have gone to campaign stops by both parties. In 2000, I saw Lieberman's daughter do a Gore/Lieberman stop and Jeb Bush's son do a stop for Bush/Cheney at UF. In 2004, I saw Bush at the Xcel Energy Center, Kerry at the Metrodome parking lot, and Edwards at the university at which I now work. It's fascinating to see how each candidate runs a campaign, how each party differs in their approach, and how the supporters of each candidate differ.

I think it's pretty clear that I'm rather liberal, I'm a registered Democrat, and I'm pretty much going to vote Democrat (DFL in Minnesota). So I have no problem declaring that the presidential endorsement of notthecheat.blogspot.com goes to....drumroll, please...Hillary Clinton.

I had a great time going to her campaign stop in Minneapolis. First, the crowds at campaign stops are highly entertaining. There were two women behind me in line, chit chatting as we walked alongside the domed football/soccer field to get into the basketball arena. At one point in time, they were discussing how atrociuos it was that their friend's daughter had dressed her kids in spring outfits for the baptism they all attended on Saturday. The horror! I mean, those kids were probably wearing pastel blue, green, and pink - and ruffles. Possibly even white shoes after Labor Day?? They were warm enough, but they were in "spring outfits." Amazing that the families are still friends.

These same two women were then talking about whether Chelsea and Bill would be there. One of the women opined that Chelsea was going to be stomping elsewhere, so she wouldn't be in Minneapolis. "Stomping? Like the musical??" That was the thought in my head. Until I realized that she probably meant "stumping." Old people are funny.

So then we got inside, and although there were a ton of seats in the bleachers, I walked down by the stage, where I got really, really close to the stage for all of the action.

First, I listened to Senator Mark Dayton. Before he spoke, he walked along the rope and shook hands. I didn't really have any desire to shake his hand. He's kinda strange. But he made me. So I did. And he said it was nice to see me there. I supposed that's as opposed to being nice to see me at the Science Museum of Minnesota? Then I saw a college security guard conferring with a Secret Service agent. This struck me as funny, so I took a picture.
Then St. Paul mayor Chris Coleman spoke. I like him a lot. He informed us that the early score from the Super Bowl was "Bud Light leads by a touchdown."

And former VP Walter Mondale was listening closely.

And this guy had a really funny shirt on.

And then Senator Clinton arrived. This is how close I was to her! See how happy she is to see me!?! (yes, I know she's not looking right at me when I took the picture)
Then she got up on the stage while I, and every single person attending the event, took pictures. (It was actually really funny to watch everyone in the gym hold up their digital cameras and open cell phones with cameras for the 20+ minutes between the last speaker and when Hillary actually arrived. The instant the last speaker spoke and the Augsburg band stopped playing and the campaign CD with Dolly Parton's "9 to 5" and other woman-power songs started, everyone turned on their cameras and flipped open their cell phones, held them in the "ready position," and stood there until she arrived. I wonder how many cameras/cell phones either went into "auto-shut-off" mode or had their batteries die while they waited for her to appear. I was hysterical to see an entire gym fullied with people holding rectangular silver electronics at 90, then 85, then 80, then 75, etc., degree angles from their body as their arm tired, and finally they used their weak arm to hold up the other arm.)
Then she took in the applause. And I, along with the tall guy in front of me, took pictures.
Then she may have seen someone she knew, and a semi-tall person in front of me showed his/her approval.

Then Walter Mondale started to introduce her.

And kept introducing her.

Then she spoke. (Semi-paraphrasing) "I believe in universal health care for everyone! And if you have health care you already like, then don't change anything. Keep it. Go on. But if you don't have it or you can't afford it, then join in the universal health care plan."

Then after she finished, Mondale left, and so did I, because the Super Bowl had already started and I had to go pick up my guacamole and take it to the pot luck Super Bowl party at the bar I was heading to.

All in all, it was a great afternoon, and it was well worth missing the first 13 minutes of playing time in the first quarter of a great Super Bowl. Later on, I will pontificate about my political thoughts, where I agree with Hillary, what was great about the Super Bowl, and what is right and wrong with the Super Tuesday caucus in Minnesota. So stay tuned!

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