Here’s the latest report on the Democratic National Convention from our guest blogger, writer-producer Daniel Palladino. For more Denver dispatches from Amy and Daniel Palladino, click here.
They were hard to discern from our aerie above the convention floor of the Pepsi Center, even through the high-powered Leica binoculars I was sporting.
But they were there. Angry PUMAs. Hillary’s Manchurian delegates. They applauded, they waved signs, but their hearts weren’t in it. They were awaiting their moment.
That moment comes tonight with Hillary Clinton’s long-awaited speech. Where has she been these past couple days? Knocking back vodkas with her remaining loyalists while amending her speech, deleting the first draft “joke profanities” (“Come on, guys, very funny, but let’s get serious here — this is going to be on TV!”), and dreaming of 2012?
Also on display from the upper rafters is each news outlet’s broadcast perch, enabling audience members with small attention spans to observe the anchors in moments of repose, during their candid off-air time. On CNN, Wolf Blitzer (right) and Anderson Cooper (left) sit side-by-side while hosting a revolving slate of talking heads. Off air, Wolf remains stoic, monkish, David Carradine in Kung Fu, never turning to watch the action live on stage. The man does not smile. Or move his neck. I wonder if he’s suffered some sort of spinal injury. And then there’s Anderson Cooper, looking engaged, excited, boyish. I half expect him to fall to the floor and start playing with his Hot Wheels Rapid-Fire Launcher. And then there’s John King and his magic touch-screen TV he uses to parse American voter demographics. I can tell you that he keeps touching the damn thing even when he’s off camera. It makes me worry about his love life.
There’s Katie Couric, scribbling countless notes, the spunky student. And NBC’s David Gregory, handsome in a sporadic way, sporting swagger, the jock of the bunch. And George Stephanopoulos, Charles Gibson, and Diane Sawyer, looking audio-animatronic in the far distance.
And the speeches? Michelle Obama was incredibly effective, and her kids were no less cute in person. Ted Kennedy owned the freakin’ room before he said a word. As for the other couple dozen speakers — nice try, but your appearances are the equivalent of a favorite band playing some new, slower stuff in the middle of their set. We tolerate it, we use the restroom, and we wait for a return to the hits.