Start building the basketball court. And make sure it has glass backboards and breakaway rims. While you’re at it, paint the White House black…at least half of it. If you’re reading this George Clinton – you predicted it a long time ago homeboy. Chocolate City baby.
Last night in Chicago was surreal.
I'm breaking with my years-long tradition of never telling anyone how I vote on any issue this year. I figure that anyone who actually wonders whom I voted for doesn't know me that well, and anyone who knows me is going to guess that I voted for Obama. So what's the harm in telling? (Just don't ask me who I supported for county charter commission.
That’s right Kanye – you’re no longer the most popular black man in Chicago. Until people are let out of work early to see you rock a concert, that title officially belongs to Barack Obama.
Loads of employees were released at three today, and, judging by the number of supporters swarming on Grant Park, I’m guessing that most of them didn’t stop at home to re-apply deodorant.
To be honest, I was a staunch Hillary Clinton supporter, before and even after Barack Obama won the nomination. I had hoped to celebrate the civil victory of a woman earning the party nomination, so it took me a little while to get behind Obama - whose nomination is, obviously, also a civil victory - because I was, frankly, utterly unprepared for him to be running on the Democratic ticket.
I’m not the only person in Chicago who’s excited about getting a socialist president in office. People have their dogs dressed in Obama sweaters. Hundreds are showing up hours early for the Grant Park rally. Somewhere, I’m sure some breasts are being painted.
The downtown loop is bustling. News vans are lined around the block, and the talking heads are doing stand-ups, most of which are hilarious.
Surely you’ve heard about Grant Park – it’s the place in Chicago where Barack Obama will hopefully say “I win” tonight. It’s totally the Studio 54 of American politics.
As I mentioned in earlier dispatches, Chicagoans expect this evening’s festivities to be one of three things: 1 – The greatest celebration in recent political memory; 2 – A big fucking riot; or 3 – The most fantastic celebratory riot in United States history.
Chicago is extraordinarily segregated. White faces are scarce on the South Side, and by the time my train reaches the final stop I’m the only cracker left. I’m sure there are diverse pockets somewhere around here, but not from where I’m sitting.
Everyone is mighty friendly, and some are even concerned about me walking around.
I leave my friend’s apartment and a police officer stops me outside his door. She’s nice enough, but she still takes my name for allegedly matching the description of someone who was snooping around. It could have been me after all – that’s essentially what I do for a living.
There’s a heavy police presence on the train.
Whether or not Chicago is Obama country largely depends on where you are and who you’re talking to. As anyone who’s ever met a Massachusetts Republican will attest, there’s ignorance and insanity no matter how blue the turf may be.
Last night I grabbed a drink before dinner at a hole outside the downtown loop. The joint – simply called Richard’s Bar – is the sort of spot where you’d expect to find McCain supporters, or at least Obama haters.
Before touching down in Chicago, I had a romantic vision that this would be some sort of blue Utopia – a prObama mirage hidden between New York and Los Angeles. In my dreams, Obama-Biden posters line every block, with small children gleefully hoisting “Change” signs on all corners.
And to some degree – depending on where you are – it’s almost like that.
I meet a nice woman in the airport who’s flying to California for her lesbian sister’s shotgun wedding. With Proposition 8 looming on the left coast, gay couples are rushing to tie knots. My new friend tells me that thousands of Mormons have been bussed into Cali to pass out hateful literature at busy intersections.?xml:namespace>
I’m off to Chicago, but my original plan for this week was to hit Washington D.C. with a pit stop in Scranton. Even though the latter is a cliché reporter destination this election season, it’s as good a snap shot of the dummy belt that one can get without venturing too far off the coast.
But then I thought: who cares about Capitol Hill aides, Republicans, and foolish undecided voters? Sure, if newsroom budgets were what they were 30 years ago, every alt weekly in the country would even dispatch writers to Arizona just to watch John McCain’s presidential hopes dry up once and for all.
Hey guys, what's a fun and proactive way to show support for your
respective political party AND completely usurp parental rights from
your unconscious, post-natal spouse?
Tonight’s debate between Barack
Obama and John McCain is at Hofstra University in my old Long Island
backyard. I’ve noticed that when earlier debates were held in other corners of
some questions were formulated to fit the needs and interests of the local electorate.
Since I know suburban New York
well, I decided to pen some questions that Long Islanders could relate to.
Despite her being the prettiest vice-presidential
candidate in American history since John Edwards, Alaska Governor Sarah Palin
has yet to win affection from the lesbian community. And here’s the real
surprise: she doesn’t care much for them either.
According to a press release from
Alaskans Together for Equality, gay rights advocates were “heartened” that, in
this past week’s vice-presidential debate, Palin called for tolerance regarding
“adults in America
choosing their partners [and] choosing relationships that they deem best for