Susan has become a total Bernie fan. She heard that he was going to be speaking at Craneway Pavilion and got together a carpool to share in the experience. All I had to do was say "yes" when she asked if I wanted to go along.
We were in line for a long time slowly moving up before this picture was taken. There were lots of button vendors and signature gatherers browsing the line. It was all about grass roots involvement in the system. The discussions going on around me were good enough that it was better to participate in that than to sacrifice my spot in line to go looking for photo ops.
I could have gotten a spot much closer to the stage, but I was too busy enjoying the crowd coming in to worry about that until the speeches started. Sorry about not getting any pictures of the band that had Berniefied lyrics to some popular songs.
The first speaker was from Moms for Housing, a group that had occupied a house in Oakland until the speculator that owned it cried "Uncle". She got a lot of cheers from the assembled crowd. That's when I foud out it was not going to be easy to take pictures of what's happening on the stage from where I was.
Next up was Ro Khanna. He read off the list of incumbents and previous incumbents that had endorsed Bernie Sanders for President. It was a long list. Each name provoked a reaction from some among us. I cheered for Gayle McLaughlin. Most of the rest I didn't recognize. Judging by the reactions, the progressive community was well represented among them.
Danny Glover gave us a brief but inspiring introduction for Bernie.
Then the guy himself came up. He said all the things people know him for. Stuff like "Green new deal!", "Healthcare for all!", "The billionaires should be running scared from this campaign!", and "Forgive student debt."
There was lots of enthusiasm for his message.
After it was over people weren't really in a hurry to leave. There was lots of activity outside. Things like people getting their pictures taken with the unusual sights. Button vendors like B, who was selling "Bernie buttons, one dollar each!" Should have taken a picture of that, but I was too busy looking for the right button for me.
After we got back to the car it turned out the crowd was too big for the road to empty the parking lots quickly. We ended up chatting with others waiting for those in a hurry to finish clearing out. The street was moving a bit, but it was slow.
One of the cars moving had these stickers. Since movement was glacial I caught up with the driver and asked him why he had three candidate stickers. He explained that he couldn't vote, but he wanted the supporters of the other candidates to think better of Bernie for being on the same bumper.
After it was over we went to Berkeley for a meal. Found a brewpub that looked fairly busy and decided to eat there. When we parked there was this weed growing right there. So Berkeley! Then before we got to the restaurant we had to pass this graffiti covered window. It was the nearest thing to a Presidential sighting that day.
Postscript, the following Thursday: I love hearing political speeches, and I'd gladly see all of the candidates if they did things like this. Unfortunately, those opportunities aren't available to me. Is that because the media has decided not to show me things I disagree with? Is it because they aren't doing this kind of work? So curious about how to figure out the shape of the bubble I'm in.