Hey there Obama, thanks for stopping by. And so nice of you to bring along 2 million of your closest friends- enough heads out there on the lawn to be seen from space. White people, brown people, yellow people...young, old, somewhere in the middle- a nice cross section of jubilant black folks, please white yuppies, overwhelmed students, and panic-stricken chaperones.
Obama Day! A brisk day in January, 2009.
I really think that despite what they tell you in the movies- anytime you can walk freely through city streets, good things are happening. Phillies win the World Series, we walk through the streets. New Years? We walk through the streets. Obama Day down in DC, well we walk through the streets. The only cars, usually cops or secret service, occasionally sped by, and buses had been parked side by side, blocking off various side streets. Other than that, it was just masses and masses of folks walking side by side down in the general direction of the other masses of folks, those lucky bastards who had taken the early train or who had walked across the bridge from Virginia.
We went down by yellow bus- I had volunteered to tag along with Erin's kids from school and I fell asleep, luckily passing through Delaware without noticing. Then it was on the train and then finally out onto the busy streets of The District where people wove American flags in the air and others stopped to turn and take pictures, trying to capture this massive moment of positivity that was flowing through the streets. And it was positive, everyone seemed to have smiles on their face and I wondered if Republicans in the city were hidden in a cave or a bunker somewhere, unable to see this sight that would have been as blinding to them as the hot, summer sun.
Religious zealots, overgrown bastards preaching hate, was merely annoying and seemed to make some of the kids uneasy. They held tall signs and nodded their heads in agreement as the main dude, a real sausage frank of a douche, berated the hordes around him and Obama the Deviant and the sodomists and porno freaks and sports nuts...sports nuts??? Since when was loving sports and damning experience?
But this slight morsel of negative vibes couldn't keep the crowd down. I watched as old women cried and folks of every color, smile big proud smiles as Obama was sworn in. The crowd hung on his words- words that urged everyone to dust off, dig in, and get down to business. This was the start of new America it seemed and despite the cold, we were being asked to bring the heat, to re-ignite America's flame. It needed to happen. Bush had pissed all over our fire, pimped out the logs and shat in the pit. He did it all and he did it again and again and again and now we need air, fresh air, anything that will help us out, drag us up out of the shit and back into the fast lane. No more sitting on the side of the road, peuking our brains out. No way man, this was the happening we had been waiting for and it was happening NOW and was happening because it not only needed to happen, but because it had to happen.
Is Obama the savior? Is he going to make everything good again, right the ship and steer us in a new, beautiful direction?
That's hard to say at this point.
But what isn't hard to say is that on Obama Day, a freezing cold day in the middle of a city with one of the highest crime rates in the world, the positive vibes were running as rampant as if they had taken a little bit of everything the Lot Scene at a Phish show had to offer and we're busting with the good times that we're rolling rolling rolling along.
Behind the Lincoln Memorial, a group of people gathered around an inflatable Bush. Ropes were tied to him and as they raised their voices, the inflatable Bush was pulled down- face first into the frozen turf.
Thanks for the memories buddy. We'll see you around.