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Saturday, 16 February 2008

image for A Few Minutes in the Life of a Superdelegate

A month ago Dan Smith was an overworked Democratic pol.

Now he's a superdelegate.

In the last few days, the onetime anonymous party loyalist has been anything but anonymous. He has had his picture taken with Barak Obama (twice), Michelle Obama (once), Chelsea Clinton (three times), and Bill Clinton (once).

Wednesday morning Dan was in a good mood. The day before he'd attended a Clinton rally where he'd had his picture taken with Senator Clinton.

Pocket Protectors

Later that day, while walking to the post office to buy some stamps, his cell phone rang.

It was his girlfriend. "So how was Senator Clinton?"

"Very nice."

"So what'd you talk about?"

"Pocket protectors."

Intro
You must enter an Intro for your Diary Entry between 300 and 1150 characters long.
A month ago Dan Smith was an overworked Democratic pol.

Now he's a superdelegate.

In the last few days, the onetime anonymous party loyalist has been anything but anonymous. He has had his picture taken with Barak Obama (twice), Michelle Obama (once), Chelsea Clinton (three times), and Bill Clinton (once).

Wednesday morning Dan was in a good mood. The day before he'd attended a Clinton rally where he'd had his picture taken with Senator Clinton.

<strong>Pocket protectors</strong>

Later that day, while walking to the post office to buy some stamps, his cell phone rang.

It was his girlfriend. "So how was Senator Clinton?"

"Very nice."

"So what'd you talk about?"

"Pocket protectors."

"You may have been talking with the next president of the United States, and you talked about pocket protectors?"

"A guy near us had put a felt tip pen in his shirt. He'd forgotten to put the top back on the pen."

"So you mentioned pocket protectors?"

"The senator agreed with me. The man's life would be better if he'd worn a pocket protector."

Dan had only recently given up wearing a pocket protector. His girlfriend counted it as a victory. The truth is less valiant. The stationary store where Dan used to buy his pocket protectors went out of business.

"Dan, you're not thinking about wearing one again are you?"

Dan has his faults. But he wasn't an idiot. "Of course not."

"Phew. That was close."

He had to go. He had another call.

With Slick

Dan looked both ways, then he crossed a street. He put his cell phone to his ear. He heard a familiar voice. It said, "Hi Dan, Bill Clinton here."

"Slick! Good to talk with you." Then Dan remembered that the former President did not like the nickname. Dan apologized.

The former president was gracious.

They chatted-or rather the former President talked.

Dan knew the former president was calling to woo him. Dan knew that this phone call was no more than a political gesture done to solicit Dan's vote as a superdelegate. But Dan savored the moments the former President talked to him.

The former president tried to persuade Dan to endorse Senator Clinton.

Dan had another call, but he ignored it. Dan said he was waiting until the primaries were over to pledge his vote.

President Clinton praised this tactic. "Don't want the people think the politicians are tilting the process." The former President went on to say that the new administration would need bright young minds like Dan's.

Dan knew he was being pandered to. But he loved it.

The former President asked Dan what he was doing.

"I'm about to work on a paper." Dan told the former president that addition to the work he was doing for the Democratic party, Dan was taking a class at a local college. He was earning a degree in international relations.

They said goodbye.

More Phone Calls

As Dan stepped into the post office, Michelle Obama called him. She boiled down a version of her stump speech. She said that Barak cut his teeth on Chicago politics. It doesn't get much tougher than that. Barak is tough.

Dan had heard the stump speech. He liked the stump speech. But he preferred talking with the former President. He told bigger lies.

As he stepped out of the post office, Dan's cell phone rang again

Dan nodded his head.

Dan, this is Madeline Albright." Albright was Secretary of State under Clinton. "I hear you're writing a paper."

Albright shoveled quotes to Dan.

Dan's favorite was one he'd heard the former Secretary of State say before, "The Palestinians never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity."

Dan realized the Clinton camp was not missing an opportunity to massage an opportunity.

Soon after his conversation with Albright ended, Dan's cell phone rang again. "Dan, this is Bert Wooster. I'm with a plastics trade group. Hear you have a shortage of pocket protectors in your neck a the woods."

Someone from Senator Clinton's staff no doubt had contacted Bert.

Bert schmoozed Dan for a few minutes.

Then Dan's cell phone rang again. It was his girlfriend. She is a real estate agent. She'd just been asked to show a house to some people from Arkansas. She wanted to know the name of the candidate from Arkansas. She said, "You know the Republican. The one who reminds so many of Gomer Pyle-is it Shuckatree?"

Dan said, "His name is Huckabee."

"I called a minute ago. Your line was busy. Who was calling you?"

"I'm getting schmoozed by the pols."

"You're getting what?"

"It's a long story. I'll tell you at dinner."

Pictures and Pain

Dan realized that the Obama campaign had e-mailed him pictures. Dan opened his cell phone and admired the pictures. Dan saw himself smiling as he stood next to Michelle Obama. Dan saw himself smiling as he stood next to Barak Obama.

Then Dan felt a pain in his chest.

The pain seemed to have tossed him backward.

A large black woman shouted at him, "You tryin to be stupid?"

Dan had no idea what was going on.

He felt a gust of wind. Soon he realized the gust of wind came from an SUV that had raced past him.

The black woman continued to yell, "Wat you doin? Starin at those pictures when youse about to walk across tha street? Mista, you ain't got the sense God gave a turnip."

Dan realized what had happened. He'd been thinking about the phone calls he'd been getting. He'd been looking at the pictures. For a moment he had forgotten that he was being pandered to. For a moment he was dazzled by the people he had been speaking with.

Then he realized he'd almost walked onto the street.

The large black woman probably saved his life.

She continued to yell at him. But he felt nothing but kind, warm, fuzzy thoughts about her. He thanked her.

She shouted at him, "Dat SUV coulda squashed you-you coulda been flatter n week-old Pepsi."

The light changed. It was now safe to cross the street. Dan closed his cell phone and smiled.

The story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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