On Monday I got a text from someone very near and very dear to me who wrote: "Don't you feel like a little kid on Christmas Eve today?
The answer was yes. Indeed.
On Tuesday, I like many others around the nation, was so excited/nervous, I was about ready to jump out of my skin. Imagine trying to be coherent in the classroom. I came close to letting my afternoon class talk me into migrating from the classroom to a nearby bar with a TV tuned to CNN.
Then Tuesday night: euphoria. One of those capsules of time when all of us will remember exactly where we were at the historic moment.
And now today. On Tuesday, I had gotten an email from Alice Joy, a former capstone kid, who had previously done a piece in my magazine class about the brutal withdrawal among young campaigners who had worked long and sleepless hours for the Kerry campaign. She forwarded this link to a recent piece on This American Life that seems particulary relevant.
She wrote: "I don't know if you remember my magazine article on youth campaign workers in the 2004 election and their post-election depression but this piece just seems like the natural set-up to the article I had written - all these young people 110 percent invested in a cause, pouring all their time and energy into it. I was really thinking just how devastating it's going to be if Obama does lose. It occurred to me, however, that there will probably be some sense of loss for these volunteers even if he DOES win, just because of the inevitable let down once something is over."
The San Francisco Chronicle's Steve Winn also addressed the issue for the rest of us who participated vicariously (Full disclosure: Tom and I did our part in a battleground state at the other side of the country over the weekend. Four turfs in one day, thank you, if you happen to know what that means) Winn quotes media guru Robert Thompson: "This year more than in a very long time, come the day after the election, it's going to feel like the entire nation has woken up in a collective political equivalent of Dec. 26," predicts Robert Thompson, founding director of the Bleier Center for Television and Popular Culture at Syracuse University. "The presents look more promising before they're opened. The tree is starting to look a little funky. Reality sets in."
Finally, here's a piece from The New Republic that looks at the end-of-the-campaign from the point of view of the reporters who have been on the campaign trail for what seems like forever.
None of which is to say that the outcome of this campaign has been any less than spectacular. Just that real life will be dull by comparison. bk