Monday, October 4, 2004

The Debate Hits Home

One week later, and I'm finally feeling better. Driving my recovery is the fact that my esteemed alma mater/employer is hosting tomorrow's highly anticipated Vice Presidential debate. Case is all a'flutter, overflowing with news crews, people with Very Important Nametags, and flowerpots that just appeared over the weekend. To partake in this remarkable Historic Event (and because I got the day off anyway!), I signed up to be a volunteer. Here are my thoughts, food-wise.

Saturday, Day 1: Woke up at the ungodly hour of 7 am to go to my first shift, only to be told to just "hang out" until 9 because the credentialing process was pushed back. I had high hopes for the hospitality table. Free food is always good, but it's especially good at a college, and I figured it would be even better for a national event. Alas, no. It wasn't so much the coffee (which was quite fine), or the selection of flavored cream cheese (four!). Rather, it was the big fat (and disgustingly slow) fly that buzzed around the pastries. From whence it came, I know not: it did not have any proper credentials. Insects, frankly, are an appetite killer. I had to dig to the bottom of the danish pile before I felt comfortable having breakfast.

Rest of the morning spent signing in other volunteers, eating free chips and cookies and soda, and feeling jealous of way cooler assignments helping out CNN or CBS.

Sunday, Day 2: Came in at noon and had the challenging task of updating the names on an Excel spreadsheet. But I did get pizza for lunch: 2 corners of a square pizza! Before long I got re-assigned to work at the driveway gate where I got a radio (to confirm everyone trying to drive inside), a newfound sense of power, and no food at all. Someone working with the Commission for Presidential Debates has Domino's Pizza delivered and walk off without offering me any. Newfound sense of power fizzles.

Monday, Day 3: Volunteer HQ gives me a choice - help Eurovision or help the Kerry Edwards campaign? No hesitation here! I skip off to help the Kerry Edwards press staff with a song in my heart. I get a tour of the debate facilities, including the dark, draped debate hall, the vast media center, for the 1,800 press people, and "Spin Alley," where various personalities make pronouncement to TV stations about how it all went. The lil' old gym cleans up real nice. No food, or beer, set up yet in the media hospitality lounge provided by sponsor Anheuser-Busch, though. And I was so busy I didn't get to eat until 2, when we dropped by Jake's Sandwich Shop somewhere near Public Square for a BLT. I'm ashamed to say I forgot to recommend Slyman's for lunch.

Tomorrow I help with the Edwards people again, which means going to Parma for his town hall meeting. Unfortunatly this means I won't be able to go to the Pancake Breakfast the students are holding in the morning, where Kevin Bacon is (supposed) to appear.

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