26 January 2007

Chicago...Here I Come

Susie and Rich on the Lower East side of Manhattan talking to Peggy in Minneapolis right after the campaign on their web cams (Sara, pretty cool, right??). See how each side has the appropriate back drop? That's good advance.

Big excitement for the Sooz.

I'm going to Chicago a week from today (could have been Tuesday, but I'm hosting an Blake alum event on Thursday) to build crowd for Barak Obama. That's right, people, you read it here first. Quiting a job you loathe only leads to good things. Cause when you open yourself up to the universe and state clearly what you want, or in my case, what I didn't want, it will likely happen. Or something will. Because it has to.

Having good friends helps, too.

SO. Off I go!

I'm getting in touch with folks: Sara's there, Kate's coming down the weekend of the rally. Tara and Larissa live there, I think Liz G does, too. Jimmy V wants to volunteer and meet campaign folks, hopefully finding a new direction for his life and I think that's everyone? That can't possibly be everyone, but I'll figure out who else is there. My mom sent me a massive list of folks who are there who I'll have to recruit to volunteer.

My loyalties are not resolute, but I'm looking forward to getting to know the Senator's staff and their ways. This year could be a whole lot more interesting than anticipated. Or just interesting in a different way.

Photos from the last time I did this...in 2004. For John Kerry. What a disaster that turned out to be.

(Speaking of which, anyone going to the anti war march in DC? I, unfortunately, cannot make it...)

Susie and Mike in Green Bay. Bon Jovi decided to stay on the plane with Kerry and all the sudden we had a rock concert on hand. Mike lives in Red Hook and works at SEIU where one of my oldest, most impressive mentors, Mike Dolan, does something really important, but I can't remember his title. All my jobs from here on out shall include walkie talkies and bull horns. All of them.

Mike Dolan first introduced me to the wonders of the bull horn with his very own GOLDEN bull horn at the event that got me hooked on production: The Rolling Thunder Down Home Democracy Tour.

Mike was in town to see his friend's film "Fired!" which has partnered with United Professionals to bring the org far and wide. Mike is somehow involved with UP...probably through SEIU or Barbara Ehrenreich. I met her Wednesday night after the screening, then Mike, his niece Beatina and I went out and had a great night on the town. So much fun. Big Wednesday this week.

This is Team...ugh, somewhere in Ohio. I can't remember where. We started out in one city, met each other, had lunch and then got a call that we had to go to a different city. So we did. This was the trip I met Rich on. He works for Spitzer now and he's the one who I, essentially, moved to New York City with. Thanks, Rich ;) What we're doing here is staking out the exit point of a Bush rally. We call these "visibilities." Just being out there is good. Rich is on the right. He's absolutely hilarious! I have a movie of this, too. If I ever figure out You Tube, I'll post it.

Dan, Pam, Susie and Tammy. At the rally for election night in Boston. I had to go home early that night, per Rich, because I was crying and that was not good for morale. We stayed at Doug's house in the South End of Boston. The next day Spencer, Mike and Dan picked us up and we all went to DC for the final party. It was party after party for about two weeks before Rich and I wound up back in Manhattan. It's like these people who are exhausted by travel just can't stop...so we didn't.

Ah...the lights. Those are the press stands. Those are all their lights catching the glaring details of Kerry's election night rally. Bon Jovi showed up here, too.

Crowd builders '04. Mary Beth Cahill was kind enough to treat the advance staff and whomever else was in Boston to an open bar after Kerry's concession speech. We didn't know it yet, but Elizabeth Edwards had been diagnosed with breast cancer just three days prior. I'm going to Chicago with Dan, the guy behind and to the left of me. Good old friend-we built a crowd at CMU in Pittsburgh together in '04. I had a seminal crowd builder moment at CMU. I ripped up someone's ticket who I knew to be a republican protester. When I did that a beefy union guy stood behind me and said, "you'd better listen to her." I think the protester almost cried. Oh well. Serves him for being an idiot at my rally.

The line to our Des Moines rally. Pretty rockin, my friends, pretty rockin! It was the largest political rally to date in Iowa. And who decided to join me, but...

My folks! Peggy came down and she checked in press at their hotel while Bob drove all over Des Moines trying to track down THK (Teresa Heinz Kerry) to give her her dinner. They really got a taste of my job that night! The other woman, Sarah, and I went to high school together. When I walked into the Des Moines campaign office I went in to the Communications portion and who was there working her butt off? Sarah! Small world. She lives in Manhattan with her fiance Marty. Justin and I ran into them a few weeks ago at Spice in Chelsea. Whew....

Reggie Hubbard. The man. The legend. A great friend and excellent person, I met Reggie when he got on the plane with Kerry. One of the hardest working, most dedicated people I know. And incredibly intelligent AND good looking ;) We had lunch together this Wednesday at Dos Caminos in SoHo and talked about top secret life decisions. 20 minutes later I was on my way to the ER with some nasty allergic reaction...to...something. Anyhoo...

Nick, Chris, Aaron and Mike at the office in Green Bay. We talked on the phone a LOT. Aaron lives up in Boston; Nick and Chris in DC. Nick is a legend. Mike you've already met.

Kristen (white sweater) and I worked together in Boston and then we both left that company for the campaign. I had no idea where she wound up til I walked into the office in Green Bay.

Ah...the life of campaigning. Can you tell I love it?

I could go on with stories...cooking a speech writer a hamburger in a Ohio Westin at 1 o'clock in the morning with the hotel manager. Duckie, I think was his name. Great guy, super accommodating. That same night Snoop, Seinfeld and someone else were staying at the same hotel; I was nervous I was going to have to work with Secret Service to get the three to hang out. I didn't, but that would have been hilarious.

Or the time that Edwards left behind the form he had to send in to be on the ballot in North Dakota-it was due the next day (this involved shedding of shoes and running across tarmac). Or the time we celebrated Setti's birthday at Brit's in Minneapolis (my mom decorated his room); or when Michelle brought Kerry his dinner from Vincent; or when my folks cooked the Mpls team waffles one morning; or the monotonous down time one would inevitably hit; or Elizabeth Edwards exclaiming upon walking into their hotel room in Albequerque, "this is bigger than our first two houses put together!"

I can't even imagine the amazing stories organizers with history must have. I can't wait.

Off to celebrate Jenna's last day at SHNY and Ceri's first day of being 30!

Happy days.


At 12:34 AM, Blogger Robert Whitlock said...

Wow, that's a lot of happenings. To the ER with foodpoisoning? What caused it, do you know? What did you eat?

My campaign advice: Don't pick the person who you think is most likely to win, pick the person who you most deeply believe in and want to win.

At 12:37 AM, Blogger Robert Whitlock said...

For me, the only presidential candidate who I could work for (among those who have entered the race currently {January 27, 2007 - yes that is right, there are over 21 months until the election}) is Dennis Kucinich. Unless a strong Green Party candidate arises, or Bernie Sanders decides to run, Denny is my man.

At 2:13 PM, Blogger Sara said...

how exciting!

let's chat about mr. obama - i don't have my mind made up about him and would love to hear your thoughts.

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