(If your computer can handle it please click this YouTube link and 'Watch in HD'. It's Incredible.)
11:18 PM, Tuesday, January 20th, 2009:
In case you were ever fighting a cold and just wanted to get it over with, I've totally figured out what to do. First, get 3 hours of sleep and fly across the country and proceed to walk outside in 20 degree temperatures for a total of 2 hours. Then, sleep for excactly 90 minutes and just get the fuck back up. Then go outside at 4am and journey downtown to stand next to two million of your closest friends (this part may be difficult to recreate) for 10 hours in 19 degree temperatures with a wind-chill of 5. End that period walking another 2 hours and then make sure whomever you're staying with keeps the apartment at 85 degrees so when you walk in you're suddenly so hot you're going to pass out. When you do finally pass out, again do so for exactly 90 minutes and just wake-up. You will then be sick. Guaranteed. Just in case you were wondering how to just get it over with.
But I'm smiling because it happened AFTER today. I fuckin' rocked it, and today was amazing.

The day did start at 3:30 AM to catch the first metro after it opened at 4AM. To everyone's surprise it was paaaaaaaacked. More than I've ever seen a metro filled before. But I didn't care, I was getting on...


I literally jumped on with both hands up and humped the people in front of me as the subway doors actually closed on my coat which road outside for a full stop. But I made it on. :-)


And off to the silver gate which my ticket let me into. It was surprisingly cold with the windchill at 5 and I knew I just had to keep on movin'...


...and that stopped after abour 10 minutes. Mayhem at the gate as people had been there since 6PM the night before and no one could tell us where the FRONT of the line was. People got pissssed. For 2 hours we stood in one place until they started the stampede to the next blockade again pissing people off who had been there for 12 hours. Oh well, it served me well, as I found myself at the front of the new line when it was said and done. Giddy-Up.


It was at this point that I started to notice that I could no longer feel my pinky toe 'nor the one next to it on either foot. 3rd one was getting bad too and as much as I stamped my feet and tried to move in place, I was losing this fight. My shoes were for comfort, and one pair of socks with these... basically tennis shoes - was not working. Finally at 8AM they let us go through security...

And I stormed to the front of what would be my view of the Inauguration.
It may look far away, but if you saw how massive the crowd was on TV you'd realize this is indeed the front. I was cold, but I was there - and now there were only 3 hours to go...

But 3 hours for people to start the big push. For some reason they decided to use these plastic barriers to hold back oh... 2 million people. Guess what started getting ugly. And guess what's REALLY hard: being in the front row. 'Cause if you don't position yourself right you will be trampled.


So I started getting my leg ready for the inevitable push which pushed us all to that next barrier... and we were all yellin' at security saying we needed help. The open gravel part was for handi-capped people and the inevitable, sadness happened. The second barrier went down (couple girls trampled, but they were alright) and everyone flooded in front of the people in wheelchairs. Including me of course, but it was completely out of safety. There were just no guards to keep people back.

So now I was up to the reflecting pool at which point I noticed that I now had lost feeling up to my big toe and actually called my dad out of concern. How many hours can you go with every single toe numb before you're actually in danger? I don't mean my toes were cold, I was one-by one losing all feeling. He said that if it goes past your big toe and through your foot, you're in some shit. That fact, and noticing other people actually making their way around the pool without guards noticing made me have to try. I needed room to walk 'cause the lack of movement was really fuggin' up the toes...

...and the old addage "looking like you know what you're doing" got me to the other side. That row of people on the other side of the pool? That would've been me. Now? Here was my shot:

Yes You Can. Heh, and now the people behind me?
The whole world. For the ceremony I found a nice step, with tons of space around me, I had a clear view and it realllllly hit me that I was there.
I could've gotten even closer, but I loved being raised up on the step with absolutely no one around me. I was actually next to people with Orange and Purple tickets that came back a bit to also be raised up because they couldn't see any thing from that angle. I just kept looking around at my good fortune and was beeming. It finally hit me and I just smiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiled.

I mean even if I had been further back I would've been happy, but I just couldn't believe where I was, how good the view was and how incredible life can be if you try and fall up the stairs. And then, the man was sworn into office...


...and BAM tears. Like I couldn't feel my face and wasn't really crying... just tears came out. I couldn't believe he was actually the president. Part of me never thought it would happen even when he won the election. So used to the other shoe dropping - I just did not believe it was gonna happen. And then I saw it, with my own eyes. He, was, the president.


And those fuckin' cannons goin' off were not fun. Jesus. You're president - CRACK!!! And we're all lookin' up lookin for fireworks or some shit and nothin' just cracks and booms. I finally saw smoke and it occured to me it was a cannon. But no matter. It was done, and Obama was now President Obama. Craziness.

Speaking of craziness, how 'bout Obama slappin' Bush's ASS in his speech? Wow.
The line that we don't need to destroy our ideals to stay safe even if it's more expedient -- just, WOW. I coudn't believe what a JAB that was. You know? Bush was RIGHT there. LOL. I wonder if he even took it as a jab? There were several lines that were such a direct repudiation of the Bush Administration I could hardly believe it.
And so it is. He is our president, and I was there. I saw it with my own eyes. I got an incredible view and will never forget it. I will also, never do that shit again.
Seriously, Jesus Christ could come back and get elected and I would watch that shit on TV...but if you're gonna do it, this was the one to go to. I did the video with hardly any music and I really dig it. Totally different feel.
Oh and the exodus? Whew. I mean it was crowded getting everyone in, but we all arrived over 8-10 hours. We all left however at the same fuckin' time. So you'd get to intersections like this:
That might as well be a video because if you notice, everyone is faced a different way, therefore no one is moving. I mean, no, movement. Every intersection around the mall was like this. So after getting stuck in a few of these, I decided to just go several blocks south and go around the entire city instead of even dreaming of getting on the metro. Ended up working out very well - but what a clusterfuck. People were bitching that they should've planned this better but I gotta say... is there any city that could handle 2 million people shoulder to shoulder, back to front all in one place... leaving at the same time? If you think of it from an overhead view, your best bet is to go out as far as you can and then wrap around. It's your only hope...

...as was getting back to the apartment before I collapsed. My body had given it's all. Fo Sho. Ya see it in that picture? See the body starting to break down on my way home? Awww, Adam is done walking. But no one can say I'm a pussy LA guy. I know several peeps back in Ohio that would NOT have stayed out all night in that weather. So SHUT IT.

Which is what I'm going to do now. Gooooooooodnight. I'm gonna sleep as long as my body will let me and then I think a trip to the White House on Barack's first day on the job is in order. I cannot wait to visit that house again with Mr. Bush in Texas.
It's a New Day.