The Friday Hot Sheet

Remember Tuesday? Doesn't that seem like it was an absolute lifetime ago? All the hype leading up to the 4th had emotions running high on either side of the equation -- but I was still unprepared for just how tense I felt watching the numbers roll in while pundits and holograms prattled on about what it all meant. Which of course, is absurd -- because I'm not sure any of us can even begin to comprehend what this election really means for this country, our nation as a people, or history itself just yet.

And yet, as with all victories -- there were casualties along the way. And perhaps most importantly, there was a call for caution and patience from the very man who we all empowered with our excitement for a quick fix. A man who seems to understand much more about the gravity of the position he's inherited than many of us who helped get him there.
All that being said, it's hard to remember a single moment where I've
felt more hopeful and excited for this crazy little country we call home.
So before reality returns to politics -- here are this weeks risers and fallers, and the buzz as it looks from here.
ObamaI was nervous. I'll admit it. I knew the numbers, I'd seen the projections. Like almost everyone else, I'd overloaded on the little details to the point where everything seemed assured, and yet there was still this something inside, this little worry that somehow it still wouldn't happen. Was it cynicism? Was it doubt? I don't know. But the thing I remember most about filling in that bubble on my ballot was the amount of nervous excitement I felt. A tension that carried over into the early returns, even as the electoral numbers started to skew Obama's way. A big part of that I think was living in Florida, a state I couldn't help but think was going red (given recent history and perhaps my preconcieved notions of the place). When Ohio went blue, I should have felt better -- when Olbermann started doing the math and tried to get people to realize he was calling it without taking the Dan Rather-ish risk of actually calling it on TV until it was certain, I should have started celebrating -- but it was like I still didn't know how to process it. I knew it was real when NBC declared, but it wasn't until I saw Jesse Jackson standing at Grant Park, overwhelmed with emotion -- that it really struck me. The sheer power of the moment. The realization that history was happening right before my eyes. And then, outside the window -- shouts and cheers, people I didn't even know unable to contain their joy. The phone calls, the text messages. It was just an amazing feeling, one that I've still had trouble putting into words, even now.
 
The Obama PresidencyA campaign platform is not a policy. A speech is not a law. There's a lot that has to be done, and despite the overwhelming mandate Obama was given, it's not all just going to fall into place overnight. Worse yet, some of it might not have a chance to fall into place at all. 4 years can be a very short time if you're not careful -- so it's important to watch these next few months carefully. I voted for his policies and his dedication, but now I need to see him do it. But as Barack Obama said many times (including at the rally when I saw him speak) a lot of it will fall to us. A fact that I think will be the trickiest part of these next few years. He's going to work to change things that have kept many of us from being able to dig out from under our debts -- but he never said he was going to pull us out himself. That part is up to us. And lets not forget something here -- he's still a politician. There's going to be compromises, and there's going to be costs. And we're not going to like all of it. But if we're going to make a change -- if we truly are going to shift the direction of where we're headed as a nation, then we're going to have to take some hard steps, endure the criticisms and the "I told you so's," and worst of all -- the doubt we ourselves will surely feel as we take this new path. It's a time to stand together, but that doesn't mean we shouldn't keep our eyes open as we do.
 
Prop 8I was shocked when this passed in California. Pissed off is probably a better way to put it. And yet -- even as I voted against passing a similar measure here in Florida, I didn't feel a similar anger when I saw that provision pass easily here in my home state. It's a contrast that I've been trying to process for a few days now, as part of a story I'm working on about it. Why am I so pissed at California and yet so unsurprised and ambivalent about Florida? The surface answer is easy: California was a state that had previously allowed gay marriages, had plainly seen people elated on the steps of their City Halls exercising that right. And then it was all taken away. In a literal way, that's very different than voters in this state continuing to deny a right that has yet to be granted. But when I thought more about it, the more my feelings on the matter confused me. Happiness is happiness. Whether you're a homsexual living on the East coast or the West shouldn't matter. If you can find and maitain a relationship that strong, why shouldn't you be allowed the rights that others can have? Because it's morally bothersome to some people? It's such a complex combination of issues and ideas that there's really not enough room for me to discuss it here (which is why I'm still working on the story for later) -- but here's the point that I want to make. The discussions and anger that's come in the wake of the passing of Prop 8 in Californa has largely been aimed at the religious groups that funded a number of the anti-gay marriage media campaigns and the ethnic demographics who are generally (and perhaps stereotypically) being blamed for the homophobic vote behind it's victory. The fact that such marketing seemed to be successful offers a foreboding message about the actual state of unity in this nation, regardless of who won the battle for the executive branch. But what concerns me the most is that here in Florida where a ban on gay marriages passed with an overwhelming majority -- I can't recall seeing a single commercial, flyer, or rally asking people to support or oppose the legislation at all.
 
The GymThe good news is that it's still there. The better news is that I know this fact because I've been back in there, trying to undo all the damage I created when I almost gave up on the whole process in frustration last week. I've still got a long ways to go -- but at least I was able to get past the anger I was feeling so I could dig back into it. I've got a new workout plan, new equipment at home, and a fresh resolve. I still need to get better eating habits, but hey -- baby steps, right?
 
NonpointJust saw a new concert calendar listing telling me that they added a show at Jackrabbits for late November -- which is awesome (it will be the 3rd time I've seen them this year), epsecially considering the fact that it won't conflict with my plans to drive to see Skindred play the Orlando House of Blues in December. Not quite as good as seeing them together on the same stage like I did a year earlier -- but still enough to get me saving my pennies for a chance to hear 2 of my favorite bands go at it again.
 
Being BrokeI've never been rich, but lately things are just tight. Usually I have a little more breathing room at the beginning of the month after rent gets paid, but right now it's just not there. And it's not like I can blame George W Bush for making things this way, or get angry at Barack for not waving his hands and fixing it three days after the election. No -- this is all my fault for spending more than I could afford without creating the kinds of personal safety nets that had protected me in the past. Plus it's that annoying sort of financial hole where the bills are paid and there's enough in the budget for gasoline and groceries, but that's essentially it. That sort of day-to-day living where any pack of gum, egg mcmuffin, or unforseen need for an extra bottle of laundry detergent could bring the whole thing crashing down on top of my head. I'm notoriously bad with money, but it was something that I had really been improving upon over the past year. Now I'm scraping by, and it's hard not to feel a little dissapointed in myself for letting it happen again.
 
Sniping
at Sarah
Palin                  
Honestly, it's a little low class -- especially since the majority of these new revelations are apparently coming from sources inside the Republican campaign. I mean sure, she may have been a mousy diva with closed-minded views about womens rights and reproductive freedom who was utterly underqualified to lead this nation, but didn't the election results sort of express that sentiment for us? I mean, is it really necessary to keep taking shots at her now?

      ..yeah, yeah it is.
            

[Listening to:  Mudvayne"Severed" ]

Comments

JerseySjov said…
i'm not looking forward to watching the news in the first few months of the new presidency, since everytime he blinks and we're still at war/in an economic crisis/etc they're going to complain. but overall i think that any change has to be a change for the better.
Dorian said…
I hadn't been registered to vote for several years and had never been registered in California, but the Yes on Prop 8 ads really pissed me off - enough to cause me to register to vote. A professor from my alma mater was highlighted spewing BS on one of those commercials. >.<

A friend of mine attended two lesbian weddings in the past few months and told me how different the weddings were from any other wedding he had attended... that you could see so much love between the couples and that the drama of the wedding itself was minimal because of the love. That was inspiring to me.

The ignorance I've heard from some people about why they voted yes on 8 only serves to further infuriate me (for example: same sex marriage is a slippery slope for people to be able to marry children or animals... REALLY?!) Granted - the "no on 8" campaign may have been better served if it was positioned as a civil rights issue as opposed to a gay issue. The whole thing just makes me incredibly sad and I hope something will change...
unMuse said…
I have to say, I found it quite interesting that stocks were rising and then as soon as he spoke about the economy today, they froze up. You're right, he's still a politician and from what I've seen, since the significant point dip on Wednesday, the economy isn't favoring him. At least for now.

What I find disgusting is that when Bush was re-elected, everyone moved on, for the most part. Sure, liberals everywhere screamed they were moving to Canada. But there wasn't this.. this superiority complex. This continued bashing of "the right" is nonsense. I was hoping it would be done by now.

(and I'm not pointing a finger at you, so don't take personal offense. I'm pointing a general finger.)
Peanut Angel said…
"A campaign platform is not a policy. A speech is not a law."
Wise words my friend. I hope a majority of voters understand that and don't go off the deep end when nothing has changed six months from now. I'm afraid a lot of people voted for a quick-fix miricle with no clue about the reality of what it takes to make things happen.
Hex said…
Jersey -- Apparently Obama's already working on a plan to reverse a boatload of Bush's ineffective executive orders -- and he found time to take his hot wife on a date over the weekend. How can you not love that?

Dorian -- Change takes time. Hopefully this will end up back in the courts and will get it's fair shake once again. It's just shocking to me that in a place where gay marriage existed and was successful that it would be taken away.

Unmuse -- It is kinda low taste. I think the vote sent the message clearly enough. Hopefully decorum will return soon enough -- especially once he starts making policies and the postitive changes start rolling in.

Peanut -- that's sort of the point I was trying to make in my post. A lot of people want the quick fix, but luckilly I think Obama himself understands that it's gonna take more than that.
dorian said…
http://la.curbed.com/archives/2008/11/angry_prop_8_protesters_are_also_very_funny.php
LadyShay said…
U're gonna be in Whorelando:)