Obama-rama: Straight from D.C. to the Q.C.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Finally ... warmth

Posted By on Tue, Jan 20, 2009 at 4:30 PM

Well, I finally made it out. This post is written from the comfort of my friend's apartment. My fingers are starting to come to life again.

This cool picture is of the Potomac River as we traveled across while on the Metro. See the ice? That's what my insides felt like.


Well, seeing as I missed pretty much everything ceremonial, I'm about to go YouTube President Obama's inaugural speech. That's what happens when millions of people come to witness history in the making.

As one woman sitting across from me on the train said, I feel like I've worked a 20 hour day.

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Random cool Obama bag

Posted By on Tue, Jan 20, 2009 at 2:59 PM

Obamawear was everywhere: Obama skull caps, T-shirts, buttons, scarves. This bag was the coolest. Sorry, I couldn't help myself.


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A different kind of ticket problem

Posted By on Tue, Jan 20, 2009 at 2:52 PM

On my way to the metro station, I found a pair of friends from Philadelphia who had a different kind of issue with tickets.


Me: So what did it take for y'all to get down here?

Monika Maslany (right): Well, basically we really wanted to be here. It was hard to get tickets. We actually got tickets to come to DC, we got here at 7:30, and we had no tickets to go back home.

Venise Walker: We just had to be here, so we looked online, we were watching CNN, and CNN said they had posted tickets online so you could get them. So we get online Amtrak and we find tickets to get here but we didn't find tickets to get back.

Monika: We figured we'd at least be here. We did end up getting tickets to go home tomorrow at 5:30 in the morning, so we're planning on being up for 24 hours.

Me: You don't have a place to stay?

Venise: Nope! (Laughs) Well, we have friends who are staying at the Embassy Hilton, or something like that, and we're on our way there now.

Monika: We heard that security was really bad, like it's not even worth it to try to get through, so we're just going to hang out, we heard the bars are open until 5 a.m. so, and then we'll get back on the train, go home and just sleep tomorrow.

Me: At least you can say you were in DC.

Both: Yeah, exactly!

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Chatting up the Obama merchandise seller

Posted By on Tue, Jan 20, 2009 at 2:28 PM

So, since I couldn't get in to watch the swearing-in ceremony, I stopped to chat with an Obama merchandise vendor. Meet Korey, the button seller, originally from Baltimore.


Me: So what are you doing here today?

Korey: I'm selling buttons. Helping a buddy of mine out, he designed these buttons in Philadelphia, so I'm out here selling them.

Are you excited to be here?

I'm excited to be here, but I'd be just as content to be at home watching it on TV because you're not going to get any closer, but there's still a kind of energy out here, so it's nice. There's a ton of people here. We're in a tiny little apartment here in DC, a friend's, a one-bedroom, basement apartment with five of us crammed in, straight up college style.

Was it worth it, coming out here?

Yeah, we're selling a good amount. But like I said, it's an energy out here. My kids will be like, where were you, and I can say I was selling buttons here in DC.

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Why I gave up

Posted By on Tue, Jan 20, 2009 at 2:02 PM

Photo taken from behind the gate that separated us (the people who wanted in) from them (the people who made it in). Had I spent the night in front of the gate, I might have made it. You can't see very clearly in the photo, but people are rushing through the security check lines and running up toward the mall area. Lucky bastards. 


And here's the reason why I couldn't make it up there.


And here are some of my fellow purple ticket holders who didn't make it in, either.


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I give up...

Posted By on Tue, Jan 20, 2009 at 11:45 AM

I gave up on standing in line. Being smushed in a mob was hurting my back.


And someone has some major cleaning up to do. This photo taken near the judiciary square metro station.

Continue reading »

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Numb toes, losing hope...

Posted By on Tue, Jan 20, 2009 at 11:42 AM

CL editor Kim Lawson is in D.C. covering the inauguration proceedings live. Check out her first post of the day:


I'm stuck three blocks away from the gates to get on to the Mall, locked in a mob of ticket-holders. No one has moved for the last hour except to let ambulances or police cars through.

My toes are numb. My face is numb. I've been way too intimate with too many people around me. We all get pushed together to the point where I can't even lift my arms away from my body. You'd think all this body heat would be warmer, but it's not.

I don't know what to do at this point. It's 10:30 a.m. I've been in line for hours and I may not make it into the Mall in time to see the swearing-in ceremony. The latest I heard is that the gates were closed for a bomb sweep. Someone else said the gates are open, but that it may take three hours to get through.


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