Monday, February 9, 2015

It's All Part of the Experience, I Guess...

Your Candidates...
Photo Courtesy Eddie Barnes for Council
Saturday's Pre-Primary Convention was one of the most interesting events I have attended in my life.  It was my first big get together of Democrats as an official candidate for City-County Council.

My morning began about 7:15 a.m. with my alarm.  I woke up, showered, and got ready.  The first big decision was to go with the casual look or to go with the suit.  I decided to suit up, so I selected my navy blue suit, a tan shirt, a tan and green plaid tie, and my "tall shoes" even though, at 6'4", I really don't need to be taller.

I hit Mickey-D's for some early morning sustenance and then decided that I couldn't appear at the event with a dirty car, so I went to Crew Car Wash on East St.  Unfortunately, it appeared that the rest of Indianapolis had the same idea, so I waited a while in that line.  In the process, I managed to dump some Diet Coke on my shirt.  No worries...the jacket will cover it, and it did.

Finally, with the car washed and the Diet Coke incident cleaned up, I arrived at Primo's Banquet Hall on the Southside.  As I stepped out of the car, I realized that I had managed to find the only patch of snow in the parking lot.  I chuckled.  Walking to the door, I ran into Marion County Surveyor Debbie Jenkins, her friend Gary Pierson, and Perry Township Democratic Club President Luis Diaz.  It was nice to run into some of my friends right off the bat.

Inside the hall, I found a few more of my friends from Decatur Township, and I shook a ton of hands.  I met a couple of readers of my blog, caught up with Jackson Blanchard, and I talked a little shop with Zach Adamson.  I also talked with Patrick Lockhart and Blake Johnson...neither of whom I had seen for months.  Elected officials seemed to be everywhere, and I tried to say hello to everyone I could.  I came across Angela Mansfield, and we had a brief chat about her decision.  I also sought out Leroy Robinson to wish him luck.  We had a good conversation.

At that point, it was time to move into the convention floor.  Chairman Joel Miller, who I had talked to in the politicking area earlier, gave a rousing welcome speech and handed out awards.  Luis Diaz received one of them for his work in Perry Township, and Billie Breaux was presented an award for her long service to Marion County, the State of Indiana, and the Democratic Party.

My friend Andre Carson was next at the podium, and he paid tribute to great Democrats past and talked about where we are going in the future.  He gave way to President Maggie Lewis who was given the task of introducing Joe Hogsett.  Hogsett gave a passionate speech about quelling violence in our city as well as the bright future of the city.

There were a few more things that happened of course, but the most awesome moment for me was hearing Chairman Miller put my name into nomination to be the preferred candidate for City-County Council in District 20.  My Congressman was chanting my name, and I was truly honored by the number of people that applauded for me.

Before you knew it, everything was over, and we were taking pictures on the stage.  I've seen that scene so many times before from the other side of the camera, and it was quite odd to be one of the candidates for office.  I'm standing there just feet away from Hogsett and Lewis and Adamson and people that I've looked up to or reported on for years here.  It was surreal.

That was my Saturday morning.

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