Friday :: Jul 18, 2008

Letter From Texas

by paradox

07/18/08 1457.31 cst
Austin, Texas

Given a very handy 2-hour head start from the Pacific time zone I have suddenly made myself into a Night Person for Netroots Nation, staying up well past midnight, but unfortunately I still snap awake with the dawn, so I’m burning some reserves here, something I’ll likely being doing all day and night.

I’m having a wonderful time here at the Hilton, it is so very good to see all these great writers I have known in the screens all these years. As I was waiting for this morning’s panel to start a nice woman moved past my aisle seat and settled in. “All right, Lady,” I growled jokingly as stuff was put down, pleasant smiles all around. We chatted a few moments and then she opened her laptop, and there was The Left Coaster in the screen.

“Hey!” I said. “That’s the blog I write on,” pointing happily to her computer. The woman intensely focused her gaze to my nametag and started laughing, waving her hands. “Joseph! Joseph! Oh my God!” Here in fact was the legendary Mary, MaryinLosGatos, administrator to The Left Coaster and one of my best on-line friends. It’s a long story why we’ve never met, and it doesn’t matter now, we finally have.

All two days have been like this so far, rapturous greetings to long-held friends in the screens, animated conversations, new friends, parties, panels, eating out, damn I am thrilled to be having such a good time, something I actually was a little worried about (laugh all you want, Vicki, it’s darn well true). “You’re not shy,” the incomparable and handsome Common Sense Mariner said to me, pleased to be having fun. It’s true, I’m not shy, but I often feel very shy, and I’m glad to have pried my ass out of the house, so very glad, to get it here with all these fine folks in this great town.

I like Texas, big works for me. I’ve had rib-eye steak twice in a row for dinner, this is my kind of place. Good football, too.

Anyway, things have gone well for me on this trip, but still, there is an element of sadness, a feeling of something not quite right, that has been a pale wispy pall over the place ever since I arrived. It’s subtle, but something has subdued our people, for where we are in the election was should be shimmying with joy every five minutes, but instead there is something holding us back.

Perhaps it was the long primary fight, perhaps because of FISA, perhaps because the nominee for the Party isn’t here (I mean that as no criticism at all, Obama knows what he’s doing, we just miss him). Maybe because in spite of the great results of 2006 so very little actually changed in Congressional behavior. Whatever it is, there is something that has gone wrong, it seems as is if caution for joy has been permanently infused into the gathering, old sores and wounds aching a little more than usual.

All things eventually pass, and hopefully this feeling—assuming it’s even accurate at all—will leave us too, there’s a great deal of work to do, and bellyaching about how Democrats can’t fight for us isn’t going to make them do it.

I’m not going to be able to do anything of I don’t get some rest, so I am on my way, I’ll write again tomorrow. I like Texas, yes ma’am.

paradox :: 1:26 PM :: Comments (10) :: Digg It!