Now what am I going to obsess about?

Did I ever tell y’all the story about the first time I saw George W. Bush? I was in Indiana, in late high school, visiting my Grandpa.

( I used to take the train down, in the old days when smoking was everywhere, and I’d suck back Lucky Strikes and listen to Bonnie Raitt and feel like I was going somewhere interesting and being someone interesting. And then I’d be in Indiana, hugging my grandfather, and I’d be me again.
…Well. Me stinking like a half pack of lucky strikes. Man. My poor grandpa.)

One morning, I came down to find my Grandpa watching news. During the commercials – while Grandpa was talking about something else – I saw W. behind him, running for (Governor?) in Texas. And W. put a finger of fear down my back. He was wearing a big old hat and had his foot up on a rock and there were prisoners behind him in a chain gang.

This is how he was advertising his leadership. Surrounded by chained felons. I said to Grandpa at the time that he scared me; that he seemed like a very, very bad choice. When he ran for President, it freaked me out. When he won, it freaked me out.

Then four years ago, on my birthday, there was the democratic convention. And Barack Obama stood up and gave a speech, which stood me up and had me cheering. I told John, seeing him, that I wanted him to be president in 2008. And I bought his books, and did all the fan girl things. I even contributed to him money – but that was before he was running for office. So there you go.

Similarly, I was watching the housing bubble.

Now, W. is leaving. Obama is here. The bubble has burst.

Which means all my attention and watchfulness is done!

If I noted things developing while doing other things, it was all accidental – I happened to see, and it happened to inform my world view, and I happened to keep watching as things happened to happen.

And now I dunno, dudes, I have no idea what the hell is going on.

Of course, to slowly wean me, I can replace my nervous anticipation of the election with nervous anticipation about my career path!

That’s good.


  1. Can I borrow one of those books? there’s a long line at the library…

  2. He advertised in front of a chain gang? OMFG.

  3. Els – of course! I’ll have to find them… *g*
    MonkeyPants – Yeah, although I can’t find it online and prove it. But it would have been, what, 1994? (In which case, I was out of high school!)

  4. But why would he have advertised in Indiana? That’s just weird.

  5. He wouldn’t have. It wasn’t a local ad… Either it was like one of the stations we watch which is constantly showing us ads for schools and services and candidates in Georgia, or it was a news piece on Bush. I’m not sure which.

  6. Huh… From online sources, I wonder if it was Charlie Crist- “ChainGang Charlie” – and Jeb Bush. Someone supporting someone else’s run; Crist for Senate or Jeb for Governor? – in Florida.
    That there was a Bush involved was clear. I had Bush Sr. to hang the memory on. But faces? Meh. Coulda been Jeb; and later, hearing a son of Bush Sr. who executed Texan prisoners at an incredibly high rate, I figured it was the same dude.

  7. With your apparently magical eye, I suggest the following:
    – watch your career take off
    – watch the provincial liberals lose the election next may
    – watch me and my family move out of the mizzle and into east van; preferably a house with yard

    …if you can use your laser focus to make these all so, I will give you a present of your choosing.

  8. PRESENTS! I like presents.

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