Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Yes We Can

This post was originally a lot longer, but I decided to scrap the bulk of it. It’s not my intention with this post to get overly political.

I just couldn’t let one of the most defining moments of our generation pass without at least acknowledging it.

Whatever your political affiliation or belief, no one can deny that this presidential election was a historical event, and I for one was happy and proud to be a part of it.

I remember when I was a wee little Slyde, about 3 or 4, and I walked into our den to find my parents huddled around the television. When I asked them what they were watching, my father tried to explain to me, in the simplest of terms of course, about Watergate. The conversation didn’t go much beyond, “Our president did a bad thing, and now he might get fired”, but even at that young age I understood from the look on my parent’s faces that this was BIG. It was IMPORTANT.

I remember being thankful and privileged that I KNEW what was going on. I remember going to school the next day and trying to talk about it with my classmates, who didn’t know what the Hell I was talking about. I ALSO remember getting in trouble with my teacher because I started yelling “Nixon is gonna be a jailbird!” (something I heard my father say, but I had no idea what it meant.)

Anyway, as I woke up this morning to watch my TIVO’d recording of Obama’s acceptance speech, I felt compelled to wake up my son, and have him watch it with me.

I tried to explain to him what he was watching, and I tried to explain to him that it was IMPORTANT. For what it’s worth, he actually watched the whole thing with me.

He may not really understand it, but maybe, years from now, he will remember watching it with me, and understand that we shared the experience of watching an important event in history, together.

35 comments:

Steph said...

He will remember, and he'll smile thinking back on spending that time with you.

Michelle J said...

Yes, friend i am so glad you woke up your son to watch the speech together!!!

How cool is that? You must have felt it!! That special feeling, i think we are all feeling today!!

I cried like a little baby last night. Tears of joy! HISTORY BABY!!!

This is monumental!! Did you see Times Square? It was like New years eve there!!!

HIGH FIVE SLYDE!!!

Slyde said...

steph: I hope your right. Who am i kidding? you usually are :)

michele: yes, i couldnt believe times square and harlem! There were SO many people!

2abes said...

It most certainly is a defining moment in American history. It will be one of a few events that will shape the early years of the 21 century. It was quite amazing to see the crowds supporting the new president elect!

Faiqa said...

You know, when I was growing up, my dad, who was an immigrant at the time (now a citizen), used to tell me that I could be president when I grew up because I was born in America. As I got older, I rolled my eyes whenever he said that...what world did he live in, anyway? And, while the world is not ready for Faiqa to be president (yet!), I'd say we've come quite a long way. Quite.

Slyde said...

abes: i agree.. the crowds were insane!

faiqa: im ready to vote for you!

faiqa/Slyde 2012!

Real Live Lesbian said...

I totally agree! My dad made me watch that crap too. I'm so glad he did!

Kristy said...

thanks for stopping by my blog...what you said here was great! I felt all emotional just reading it!

Chris H said...

Even I watched it! And I didnt' vote for anyone! I hope Obama can live up to all his promises, or there's gunna be one hellofalot of people pissed off!

Slyde said...

reallive: me too! 3 cheers for our dads!

kristy: thanks for stopping by! If you got all veklempt, then i have done my job :)

Slyde said...

chrish: theres no way he can live up to ALL the hype. i realize this.

But if he can do SOME of the things we think he can, then i'll be happy...

i am the diva said...

Even as a Canuck, i made sure to watch his acceptance speech... i really loved it when he said you were no longer a country of Red States or Blue States, but United States.

Should be an interesting next couple of years! i look forward to seeing what happens next and what direction he takes your country!

dmb5_libra said...

awwww! i (as a 26 year-old child) watched the acceptance speech with my parents too!

Slyde said...

diva: i thought that BOTH candidates gave superb speeches last night. If mccain had spoken like that throughout the whole process, he might have done a hell of alot better.

dmb: thats cool. Staying involved is what counts...

Bruce said...

I recall back in 1969, we all sat around our Quasar Color TV and watched the grainy images of Neil Armstrong set foot on the moon. After it was over, my dad and I went out into the cool southern California night and looked up at the moon. "There are men up there son." as he pointed to gray disk in the sky. It was an event that never thought he would see in his lifetime and I knew how important it was to us all.

The same can be said of you and your son last night. Each generation has it's defining moments. The Challenger Disaster, 911, and last night. We all go forward into a different future now. The fact that you woke him to watch the speech will impress upon him just how important it was. Way to go dad!

Amy Kate said...

I went to the rally in Grant Park last night, and debated long and hard about bringing my 4 year old daughter. I ultimately decided against it just because I had visions of losing her hand in the dark, downtown, at midnight and almost had a panic attack thinking about it. But once I was down there, and saw how chill it was, I wish I had.
When she woke up this morning, she asked me 1) "Did Baracko Bamma get it, mom?" and 2) "Awesome! Did you get to hang out with him and his kids last night?"
Love her. I'm glad that even though she's young, she'll have an awareness of what happened last night, and of how significant it is.
Great post!

teeni said...

Very cool. This is a great post. Deserves a little stumble.

Slyde said...

bruce: thats a great reply, and i wholeheartedly agree. The moon walk was a tad too early for me, but as i wrote my post today, the stories i have heard about families sharing that event together is exactly what i was thinking of.

amy kate: welcome! i agree with you. i dont think i would have brought my son either with such a crowd, but if we can leave them with the impression of whats happened, then thats enough...

Candy's daily Dandy said...

Dude, you are such a good dad! You created an important imprint of history in the memory of your baby. Of course he'll remember it! You will too.

Holly Hall said...

Well, I did make my daughter stay absolutely silent when we were watching Ted Kennedy speak at the DNC. She does remember this event, but only because she had to stay absolutely silent.

I can say that I had her sit through my 2 hour graduation ceremony last May. She remembers it and references it when she sees my alumni mug and tassle. She can even mouthe out the words psychiatric nurse practitioner. (she says sigh-trick nurse prack-nishioner) close enough for now.

She does know that Mommy helps people who are sick. That I made sure she understood from the beginning.

It's a good idea to pull kids out of their own world sometimes to point out our important things.

That way, they know what is important!

:)

Holly

Slyde said...

teeni: thx for the stumble!

candy: i HOPE he will remember it..

holly: Good for you! thats awesome that that will be something she will take with her for her lifetime....

B.E. Earl said...

The biggest difference between the two speeches were the crowd reactions.

McCain's supporters were still openly booing Obama and calling him names. Showed a real lack of class.

AlleyCat said...

Well written Slyde. That's a pretty special thing you did for your son. I'm liking that as much as the speech itself :0)

Tamara said...

Even from another continent, I'm glad Obama won. What I love about the man, who has his flaws like anyone else, is his honesty. I'm looking forward to seeing how things pan out going forward.

badgerdaddy said...

Okay, I agree with a lot of the sentiment on here... And yes, it must have been a lovely moment for you, Slydemeister.

The thing that's stuck in my head about this entire election and the way people - including the media - have approached it, though, is that it's a 'historic event'.

Surely every presidential election is an historic event? And maybe if more people had gotten off their arses and voted last time, and seen THAT as an historic event too, that wanker Bush wouldn't have caused quite as much damage as he has in the last four years.

It's just a thought. Every election is equally important when it comes to the people that run our countries (unless you're in Zimbabwe).

Best of luck to Obama - he's taken on what is probably the shittest job in the world right now, but at least with the way things are the only way is up... All we have to do now if get Gordon Fucking Brown out of No. 10 Downing Street and I'll be happy. Well, happier.

Sorry if that sounded like a rant - I'm honestly delighted Obama won, if only to stop that mental Alaskan getting into office. And as for there being a black president... About fucking time!

Slyde said...

earl: you are right. i watched it again last night and i couldnt believe how badly people behaved..

alley: thanks! i HOPE it was special for him..

tamara: you and the rest of this country :)

badger: thats really what i meant about it being historic. Having a black man as our president is a history-making event.

Cuz said...

He will definitely remember watching it with you but most of all he will remember SPENDING TIME with you!

You are such a GREAT dad!

Cuz said...

He will definitely remember watching it with you but most of all he will remember SPENDING TIME with you!

You are such a GREAT dad!

Slyde said...

cuz: i try :)

Cuz said...

well you are definitely succeeding. the fact that you volunteer at his school and spend so much time with him and do fun things with him are what he will remember for the rest of his life!!

honeywine said...

It is important. I hope that all the dreams that have been hung on this star come true.

Lesley said...

Congrats on your new President.. I hope that this is the start of wonderful new, postive changes for you all.


Hugs,
Lesley

bobgirrl said...

Huh, so do you think the presidential motorcade will have the spinning rims?

elizabeth said...

well said!

Slyde said...

bobgirrl: if it does, it will be sure to get ALOT of press!

liz: thanks, lizzy!