University Avenue in Palo Alto becomes Palm Drive on the Stanford Campus at the CalTrain Station. If you follow that road past all the palm trees, it ends at a beautiful oval where there are usually college students playing frisbee on sunny days. Just beyond that is the Stanford Quad, a rectangular layout of buildings with the centerpiece being a very nice church. It's the kind of place that is so photogenic that there are always people taking pictures there. The front left building is where the school's History Department had its classrooms, and that was where the Green Party of California met for the first time in 2003.
Unfortunately, I forgot my camera Saturday morning. Because of that, I missed the opportunity to show you Matt Gonzalez (the 2nd most powerful politician in San Francisco, and the Green Party of California's highest incumbent) and David Cobb (a visible national Green Party member whose home base is the Texas Green Party) who didn't hang around for the whole show. I further cut into my ability to share the entire proceedings with you by ducking out for a few hours to attend a wonderful peace march here in Mountain View. That was exciting to. (I walked with 580 other people, as counted by City Councilman Matt Kneely.) Once all that was behind me, I went back to Stanford with my camera, and this is what I saw.
I followed the signs until I started seeing people in intense discussions, wherapon I knew I was in the right place.
When I got there, the Campaigns and Candidates meeting was nearly over. Click above to check out their meeting.
The CnC group finished its work about the same time several other meetings let out. After that, the feeling in the hall was a lot like the one between classes when I was back in school. I took this picture while I was talking to a woman who had gotten one of my stickers from me a while ago, and had ended up surfing the web and finding my site. She said that she had enjoyed browsing the thing with her boyfriend. It was one of the nicest things I have heard about it.
The Green Clearinghouse in Sacramento had a table, and they were moving lots of stuff. See that pile of newspapers to the left of the table? It was a berm, three bundles wide and table high. By the end of the meeting they were all gone. The new items on the table this time were nice peace sign pins. By Saturday evening many of the good looking women had them on their coats. Click on Starlene (the woman in the picture) to see some of the other things she saw during the weekend.
Greg Jan is one of the Alameda County Greens that has been part of the party since the beginning. He has had a lot to do with a lot of our campaigns, including ones like Gloria Purcells that got lots of votes. It's people like him that have built the party into more than just another good idea.
The next ninety minutes or so was spent on regional caucuses. Our region was broken off from the Bay Area Region a year ago and named the Silicon Valley Region. The major discussion topic at our meeting was our name, which we weren't happy with. I have no idea what happened at the other regional meetings that occurred at the same time.
Sunday morning, most of the people that showed up Saturday returned. There were some that only came for the day, people that heard about the meeting from the media and came to find out something about us. The lecture hall held about 200 people, and Saturday morning it was fairly full. A little while after I took this picture there were a few more people, but not many. Not shown here are the two dozen or so that had their backs to the back wall, and the people that were caucusing outside the doors.
This was the button Tish was wearing on Sunday. I wanted to take her
picture to, but the first try didn't work out and I ran out of film (space
on the floppies in my pocket) before I got another chance.
During the next breakout session, I went to Green Issues Working Group meeting. That was where we were supposed to figure out how to boil down all of the fine stands in our platform in such a way as to bring them to the public's attention during campaign season. Click on the black board's list above to see what we did.
Sunday lunch was a vegetarian salad bar, with lots of things like braised tofu that stuck to your ribs. I felt quite full when I finished. All around the patio outside the meeting hall were tables like this one where you could see groups of people eating. Everywhere there was the buzz of conversation as people found out about each others projects and discussed what had happened earlier in the weekend.
Sunday afternoon the plenary met again, and you can find out what happened by clicking on our agenda.
The last order of business for those that weren't in Party Leadership roles was the closing circle. At that point in time, I had one shot left on my last floppy, so I took this picture. The meeting ended on that warm fuzzy note, and now I'm looking forward to the next meeting of the Green Party of California. That one will be in Sacramento in the late Spring.