Made it back from Richmond yesterday afternoon. I had three kids, two in-laws and a wife in tow, and we were wiped out when we arrived home. Quick shout-out to “Aunt Sarah’s” off Rte 95 in Caroline County for the cinnamon apple pancakes. You’re money.
The Jefferson Jackson dinner (a.k.a. “the JJ”) on Saturday night was awesome. I mean that in the old school sense (mammoth, disproportionate, evoking awe). It is noteworthy that our own State Senate fundraiser, which featured a recent Presidential candidate in Mark Warner, merited barely a mention by the party cognoscenti. We were just another stop along the way to grab a free cocktail and hug a former Governor.
The word was Obama, and Obama was the word. I’ve heard his speech before and so there was nothing new or original this time. I feel like I can now give his speech by heart.
Having said that, I commend his style of speaking as showing the virtues of a classical education. One of his greatest gifts is understanding the power of silence — “caesura” in the classical Latin — which enables him to tell the audience that…. what he’s about to say … is really important. Barack Obama has that gift. There were times in his speech where you could literally hear your heart beat. And this in a room of 4,000 people. He has people’s attention.
Thumbs up to the DPVA staff who organized an amazing weekend with something for everybody. Thumbs down to the Richmond Marriott elevators. The system essentially crumbled under the weight of the JJ partygoers who returned to hit the post-speech parties.
In the meantime, I saw a lot of old friends from downstate. Much love to Bob and Diane Rigney, Sheila Hill, C.B. Sinclair, Mary Biggs, Dick and Kay Hobson, Councilman Brian Moore, Vivian Paige, Becky Grandi, Phil Kellam, Bob MacIver, David and Shayna Englin, Lionell Spruill, Susan Roland, Gerald Gray (of Dickenson!), Art Bredemeyer, Ira Steingold, Hap Connors, the Bergman family, Chairman Dick Cranwell, Jen (“Tommygun”) Tomasello, Lorene Martin, Baxter Vendrick, Al Weed, Alton Glass and Gene Magruder of United Steelworkers, Jim Leaman & Doris Crouse-Mays of AFL-CIO, Tim Mitchell, Bill and Anne Burks, Kevin and Debby Burroughs, Rick and Ellie St. John, Phil Forgit (looking good after active duty), Carter Phillips, Mary Wyatt, Louise Lucas (always “best dressed”), Chris Brown, Jim Bouchard, Will Harvey, Creigh Deeds, David Toscano and a host of others.
All in all, a JJ to remember.