Gearing up for Obama-Rama-Palooza in DC

Yesterday, sitting here in Sweden and emailing my friends back home in Washington, DC, is when the adrenaline-pumping excitement really hit me (for the second time — this was the first).

We are at:

  1. The end of a dark era that spread fear, turned “us” against “them,” and “we” into “me.”
  2. And the beginning of a new era!

While I know it won’t be easy, I believe Obama and his team represent the best — by far — that we could hope for right now.  It’s a tough job, and I know it’s not possible to please everyone inside America, let alone also outside America, but I believe he can/will do better than any of the others could have.

But before we get to work, we’re going to party!

Here’s a list of 44 ideas for free things to do and below are the events on my calendar for this weekend and next week:

  • Saturday Night: Arrive in DC, hang with friends, probably crash early from time-zone change.
  • Sunday DayWe Are One concert at the Lincoln Memorial: Bono/U2, Bruce, Beyonce, and many more.  SIDENOTE: I saw Bruce this summer, on the 4th of July in Gothenburg, Sweden.  Great show (was broadcast live in the US).  First time I saw him was at the Vote for Change finale concert in Washington, DC in October 2004.  Another great show, broadcast live on cable TV.
  • Sunday Night: Still figuring. Maybe Moby at 9:30 Club.  I need a miracle.
  • Monday Day: The Aretha Franklin at the Kennedy Center and the Million Shoe March 😉
  • Monday Night: Maybe Beastie Boys, Sheryl Crow, and Citizen Cope at 9:30 Club.  Need a miracle here too.
  • Tuesday Day: Inauguration Day stuff (official schedule).
  • Tuesday Night: Art of Change event (think Burning Man meets Obama Inaugural Ball).
  • Wednesday: Recovery day and go visit parents before Mom leaves for Vienna, Austria (IAEA) on Thursday.

What Obama represents to me:
(what about you?)

  • Courage, not fear
  • Hope, not despair
  • “We,” not “me”
  • The future, not the past
  • Light, not dark

Obama knows we must be the change we want to see in the world. He knows there is no path to peace. Peace is the path.  Yes we can (had to say it!).

Closing quotes:
(the ones above are Gandhi)

  • Cowardice asks the question – is it safe? Vanity asks the question – is it popular? Expediency asks the question – is it political? But conscience asks the question – is it right? There comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, popular, or political; but because it is right. –Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (Monday is MLK Day in the USA).
  • A single act of kindness throws out roots in all directions, and the roots spring up to make new trees.  The greatest work that kindness does to others is that it helps them be kinder themselves. —Amelia Earhart

Closing video:

Eddie Vedder sings “Don’t Be Shy” by Cat Stevens.  From Michael Moore’s movie, Slacker Uprising.  The video clip starts with Moore giving an interview to the press — ok berating them!

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