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Me and Her

You know what I’m about to say:  no writing last night.  Usually because Friday night is Recap Night, and I should have written a Sense8 recap.  Notice I said “should”.  That’s because I didn’t do any writing.  And why?

I went to a Hillary Clinton rally.

Harrisburg was one of the stopping points for the Clinton campaign last night, and as the rally was only a thirty minute walk from my apartment I decided that, yes, I wanted to go she her.  I have a vested interest in the election this year, and I feel it’s my duty to see to it that the Seventh Seal of the Apocalypse isn’t opened by putting a guy openly embracing fascism in to a position of power.  Plus, this year I’m in the bag for Hillary, so I figured, well, why not go?  I’ve never been to one of these thing before, and it’ll be fun.  Remember this last line, ’cause…

Right after work I went home and did my shot, then changed bags.  The Secret Service wasn’t letting people in with big bags, so I pulled out one that only carried my keys, wallet, and phone.  Then down to the streets and the almost-thirty minute walk to get in line.

And, yeah:  there was a line.

Hillary Rally 0729201601

This was when I first approached the area, and you can see the TSA scanners in the middle of the pictures.  Everyone going in got scanned for obvious reasons.  But this wasn’t the back of the line.  That was, um, in the back.

Hillary Rally 0729201602

This is where I ended up, where I sort of cut in line close to a couple of people I somewhat knew:  someone from my trans support group, and Dr. Rachel Levine, the states Physician General.  So I sort of slid into position and acted natural.  Did I feel bad about this?  No.  Let’s move on.

Now to give you a bit of an idea of the set up last night, here’s a Google Map of the area:

Hillary Rally 0729201620

The building on the right just below the “Broad Street Market” marker is where the rally was being held.  And where I was standing when I took the picture above?  Look down 3rd Street to the left and you’ll see Brother’s Pizzeria.  I was standing right in front of that place.  Oh, and Brother’s actually locked their doors right about the time I got in line because they were almost out of pizza dough due to people in line running in to get slices.  Hungry business, these political rallies.

Oh, and I shot video while in line:

When I shot the above it was about 6 PM/18 hours, and we wouldn’t get to the check points for about another ninety minutes.

Hillary Rally 0729201605

And this part, standing in the sun, was the worst.  It was close to 90 and the humidity was up, so it was unpleasant.  I wore a light top, capri jeans, and sandals.  I did my best, I assure you, to keep the internal heat down, and I was sweating like crazy.

Finally we get through the checkpoints–I set off the alarm like I always do, there must be too much iron in my blood–and we headed into the rally area.

Hillary Rally 0729201606

That woman standing on the podium is where the speaking would take place, and Hillary’s bus would park behind her for a great back drop.  There were camera podiums behind and to the right of me in the picture, and the Broad Street Market is on the left.

The area for the rally wasn’t large–here’s the layout:

Hillary Rally 0729201621

The black line is where people were gathered.  The speaker’s podium is right where it says “St” for N 3rd St, and the blue rectangle is where the bus parked for a nice backdrop.  I decided I wanted to get as close as possible and found myself right below that N 3rd St marker, and waited.

Hillary Rally 0729201607

I had a great spot, I was ready to get picture, I was ready to listen to the message.

And then…  shit took a turn for the worst.

I started getting short of breath.  Then I started feeling light headed.  Then my hands were shaking.  And I had trouble thinking.  And I felt sick to my stomach–

If you’re thinking, “Sounds like Cassidy’s about to pass out,” you win Final Jeopardy!  I actually managed to sit down in the crowd before I went over, which I knew was coming.  Someone called the paramedics–who, by the way, were working their asses off–and they helped me get about half-way to the cooling area.  And by half-way, I mean everything started turning gray about that time and they got me a chair pronto because I was about to pass out.  I sat there for about five to ten minutes recovering, and my biggest fear was if I passed out I was going to loose my bowels, because I felt like that was going to happen.  No way did I want that.

I finally got to the cooling area, and joined the other people there–

Hillary Rally 0729201616

Who pretty much all happened to be women about my age.  There was a time back before I started on the estrogen trip that I may have been able to tough out this stuff, but not now.  I sat and cooled off, had my blood pressure taken–I was told it was way down, which is why I was passing out–sipped water while I got my color back, and adjusted to my new view:

Hillary Rally 0729201608

And as the speakers came on I shot more video:

Now, given where I was, I didn’t get any good shots of the speakers.  The best I could do was this:

Hillary Rally 0729201617

The best came out grainy and overexposed.  However!  I ran into a friend, and she not only manage to get better pictures, but she messaged them to me at the rally.  That means I got–

Hillary Rally 0729201614

Bill Clinton doing all the introductions and being about as charming and articulate as always.

Hillary Rally 0729201611

Tim Kaine doing the next introduction and actually being pretty funny as he got in a lot of digs on–well, that other guy.  And after about ten minutes that led to him introducing the speaker of the night:

Hillary Rally 0729201615

So what did Hillary say?  She touched on funding infrastructure and a smart energy grid and renewable energy, all of which are close to my heart as I love stuff like that.  She talked about working to make it so people could refinance and reduce debt on existing student loans, and work towards making tuition not only affordable, but something you’re not going to have hanging around your neck forever.  A better program with less red tape for small businesses, and more apprenticeship programs for skilled trades, which is something that has slowly vanished with the decline in unions.  (I’ve been in both the United Steel Workers and United Auto Workers, and I saw a lot of apprenticeships in each of the locations where I worked.)  And more funding and support for teachers, because without education, we’re really nothing.

It was a good time all around, even if I couldn’t get in close to the stage to see, I could hear, and that was really why I was there–

Well… not the only reason.

As soon as the speech was over a lot of people filed out, and a lot of people made their way forward to shake hands with the candidates.  And I wanted to do the same.  So I went back into the crowd feeling light-headed and a little ill, and pushed through until I was up near the front, in the area that everyone would pass before heading back into the bus.  Which, by the way, was right there in front of me.

Hillary Rally 0729201618

So I waited about ten minutes, pressed between two guys far bigger than me, and Hillary came around the corner.  She was shaking hands and taking selfies with people, and seemed in good spirits even though she had to be hotter than hell in her pink suit.  (I said later that I should have told her it’s now Wednesday, ’cause us Mean Girls understand what that means.)

And right on time, here she comes.  And the meeting went like this:

Me:  “Madam President!”  *holding out hand*  (Yes, I said that.  Don’t care.)
Hillary:  “Hello!”  (Now I’m left-handed, so I had my left hand out and she switched quickly from her right to left.)
Me:  “Madam President, can I have a picture with you?”
Hillary:  “Oh, sure!”

At this point I start to stick the phone out, but because I’m in a bad position, she actually asks for my phone and hand it to an aid and says, “She’ll take our picture.”

And she did:

And #ImWithHer

And #ImWithHer

Yeah, I look like a seal just come out of the water expecting a fish, and because of all the bright lights from the media platform behind us it’s not the best, but still:  I have this, and it shows I met someone who has an excellent chance at being president.  I was also blabbering like an idiot because I get that way with people I admire.

About thirty minutes later, when I was up cooling off in front of the capitol building, I saw their convoy heading out of town:  three buses, a whole lot of Secret Service SUVs, and a police escort.  I got home and hit the shower ’cause I was a sweaty mess.  And though I didn’t get to bed until midnight because even though I was tired and sore and felt a little like I’d been hit a couple of times in the head and stomach, I was still in good moods, because I was riding a high–

The one that comes when you feel like you’ve somehow touched history in the making.

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28 thoughts on “Me and Her

  1. YOU GO GIRL! (I know – the kids don’t say that anymore, but I still like to)

    Thank you SO much for taking us with you on your journey. I’m right with you in your opinion of the narcissistic tweeter, but I’m heat defensive, and can barely go outside at all in the summer heat. I was really feeling for you as you made your way to the cooling area.

    BUT . . . you showed up and got that great picture. Congrats!

    I’m keeping my fingers crossed that there are enough people like you to show up and VOTE in November, and not simply to prevent the global embarrassment of having that other guy voted in. It’s past time for this country to be willing to elect a woman president simply on the strength of qualifications for the job.

    Wouldn’t you LOVE to hear what Hillary’s staff are thinking – I’m sure they never expected her opponent to get this far. HOW can those who believe they drive the Republican Party believe that their candidate is a decent choice – or that their party has turned into much beyond a sick joke?

    This has got to be the craziest election cycle in American History!
    xx,
    mgh
    (Madelyn Griffith-Haynie – ADDandSoMuchMore dot com)
    – ADD Coach Training Field founder; ADD Coaching co-founder –
    “It takes a village to transform a world!”

    • 1968 was the craziest I remember. This is the first I know of where the GOP is actually fronting a candidate who is actually advocating out-right fascism, and it’s an ugly thing to see. Everyone seemed upbeat last night, and while you could tell everyone was a little tired–it was about nine when it all shut down, it was hot and pretty miserable–they were all still upbeat.

      • We’ve been steadily moving in the direction of fascism for some time now: “the war on drugs” allowed a lot to slip by under the radar – profile searches, for example, that essentially overturned the rights of Habeas corpus. And the obsession with “national security,” also using fear as a weapon for control – and economic fascism fueled by corporate interests with lawmakers in their pockets. Ugly indeed.

        The working poor are furious about struggling while they watch “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous” on their televisions, over-eager to place blame for economic discrepancies wherever possible. DT is only too happy to point a finger and the rabble is roused. I just hope they won’t vote – and that everyone with lick of sense will!

        Anyway, I’m happy to hear that the Clinton crowd remained respectful and upbeat, and that there were no incidents – despite the heat. Let’s cross our fingers and toes – and pray for a return to democracy in America.
        xx,
        mgh

  2. Oh. My. Gosh. You both touched, talked and have photographic proof you met Hilary Clinton – what an absolute rush – I’m so excited for you!😄

  3. Wow. I’m so glad you told me about this post. What a day that must have been, from the excitement to the fainting to the selfie with her at the end of the event. Wow. What a memory!

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