Monday, September 10, 2012

Post-convention blues (the sky, I'm sayin')

I am not a television person, and over the past couple of weeks I watched very little of either the Republican or Democratic Party conventions in real time. What I saw, I saw streamed over the intertubes, most of it after-the-fact.

I also read a lot of transcripts, and way more punditry than could have possibly been good for me. (You'll be relieved to know that I'm not going to add my punditry to the surfeit that's already out there.)

But despite my carefully-limted exposure to the hoopla, I'm relieved as heck to come up for air now that both parties' parties are over. I can't imagine enduring a full measure of convention fever like all the poor souls who were paying close attention. Let alone the attendees!

I've never met a poll I could trust, or a post-convention bounce that meant much of anything. I'm predisposed to believe Joe Garofoli's lede in an above-the-fold front page article published in yesterday's SF Chronicle, Economy is key as voters pay attention, in which he asserts that the net effect of both parties' conventions on the electorate seems to have left the presidential race in ... wait for it ... a statistical dead heat.

[An aside: yes, I do derive pleasure from describing a newspaper article in terms that make clear it was printed, on paper, using actual ink and presses. There is more to life than its digital representations, no? On-line, Garofoli's article is titled Critical time in presidential campaign.]


It was a lovely post-conventions weekend in the San Francisco Bay Area. Now that Labor Day is behind us we can get on with the summer that never seems to arrive on-time under our local summers' marine-layered fogs. The skies were blue, the cacti were blooming (yes, those are cactus flowers at telephone-line level at the top of this post, a cropped view of a very very very tall plant on a residential street, a few blocks south of UC Berkeley, that is locally renowned for its front-yard cactus gardens ... see the zoomed-out photo below).

So as we leave convention fever behind, and gird our loins for two solid months of attack ads (pity the poor citizens in the so-called swing states ...), I want to give a shout out to Jimmy Fallon, for his right-on-the-RMoney spoof of James Taylor's classic tune, Fire and Rain:

As I wrote in a re-post to my Facebook friends (thanks to AK for the link!), I'm tagging Fallon's spoof as both silly and hilarious. But most importantly, it's pitched at a level of political anti-discourse I can tolerate as we turn our backs on Tampa and Charlotte.

It's certainly a lot more relaxing to take a sunny walk, after brunch at a local café, than it is to watch old men talking to empty chairs, or young women talking about old men who are profoundly disrespectful of their freedom, independence, and health. I'm going to try to remember that as the Bay Area's late summer stretches through September and into October. Maybe even longer ... or shorter ... what with climate change and El Niño both confounding expectations.

At left you can see the house-high cactus from which the close-up above was taken. The waning crescent moon at the right side of the image was lovely in real life; one regrets (and expects) that its digital representation isn't nearly so vivid. Alas.

As the POTUS himself said in his convention speech on Thursday night, I know campaigns can seem small, even silly sometimes. Oh, yes they can...

I wish the entire United States of America the very best in avoiding donkey doo-doo and elephant poop in what's shaping up to be the shrillest, most over-funded run-up ever to a presidential election.

Related posts on One Finger Typing:
North Korea, women's rights, and post-truth politics
The Affordable Care Act in two essential points
April showers brought May flowers

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