Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Good day

With a few obvious and onerous exceptions (CA's prop 8, the senate seat in Alaska, etc), I'm just frickin' happy today. I get why there's so much anger and emotion, but I feel lighter today than I have in a very long time.

As I was watching the results come in last night, knowing that as soon as PA came in that it was inevitable (and especially after Ohio), the excitement began to build. And even though I knew it was coming, when MSNBC put the graphic on the screen at 10 pm, I started crying. There are many battles to fight and I'm far too much of an idealist to ever really be satisfied, but the moment was overwhelming. I thought about the energy I've spent on the outgoing President and his cohort - the anger, the resentment, the fear, the frustration, the nights I stayed awake ranting, the tens of thousands of words I spewed in vitriolic furies, the conversations in public, seemingly always rising to the level of annoying random passers-by, the bursts of anger toward everyone with a Bush-Cheney sticker on their car, the wingnut blogs I read in amazement, and I just couldn't hold it in.

It's over.

Not the war. There's always another war. But this was a big one.

We will face other challenges, but not from that group. On January 20, John McCain will not take the oath of office, bringing with him someone who has no business touring the White House much less potentially living there and keeping the entire Bush cadre close if not formally in office. The first blustery days of fall are always some of my favorites, as the north winds blow away the last remnants of the sticky, oppressive heat of summer, bringing an icy clarity to the air and a crispness to the land. I'm always invigorated on those days, as it just feels easier to do everything. This feels like that, only magnified immensely. After so many days that all felt the same on a fundamental level, where a malaise had settled over the country (and the world), today is a new day. And that's worth a whole lot.

Maybe this is what the conservatives felt like when Reagan came in, with his "morning in America." That wasn't a repudiation of Carter as much as it was of the last 15 years or so, and all of the crap that had come with Watergate and Vietnam and oil shortages and all that. I don't believe that the country has become as liberal as I'd like it, but there is widespread acknowledgment that we did need a change.

Maybe it's like Bill Murray finally waking up on February 3. It almost doesn't matter what today brings. It's enough that it's a new day.