Sunday, November 11, 2012


If you were to ask me why I chose to study in D.C. this semester, I would say:

1) To find Barack Obama and make him fall in love with me
2) And/or John Boehner
3) Because it’s an election year

On November the 6th, one and a half of these dreams came true... 

As you may recall, I am currently an intern at the newspaper The Hill, and excitingly, on election night I was asked to cover the national RNC party, which was held in the Reagan Building downtown. So my fellow intern Colby and I got all gussied up and headed out to the shindig. 

Can you say business casual??
If Uncle Sam married the Statue of Liberty their reception would look like this party… The venue was decked out in red white and blue; there was a ton of free food, and a slew of country music performers including Rodney Atkins and Jo Dee Messina.

The Party :)
For our part, Colby and I had arrived at the party with instructions to find famous people, talk to them, and note interesting tidbits along the way. But, as the night wore on, we began to see that we were failing. By 8:30 we had yet to find a single lawmaker. However, I knew that John Boehner was scheduled to speak at 9:00 so I planted myself at the front of the stage at 8:40, determined to be in the first row, which is where I ended up snapping this lovely picture.

The tan man of my dreams...

Right after the speech I realized that my phone was about to die, so Colby and I set out to find an electrical outlet. Eventually we found one in a small hallway in the back of the building. As I bent down to plug in my phone Colby started beating me violently on the back. So I turned to say “Colby, hold on a second I’m trying to plug my phone in.” As I turned around, however, I saw John Boehner walk out of a door across the hallway and step onto an escalator accompanied by at least 10 people in staff and security.

When I saw him he waved at me and then we had a mini conversation that went like this:
Gracie: “Hi!”
Boehner: “Hi there, how are you?”
Gracie: “I’m great. How has your night been?”
Boehner: “Great so far, I think.”
Gracie: “Well have a great one sir!”
At this point I’m pretty sure he was about to proclaim his love for me, but then he reached the end of the escalator so he just waved goodbye instead.

This was when I noticed Colby…Poor Colby in her panic couldn’t even make herself look at him. Instead she just stood facing me, giggling uncontrollably with her hands covering her face: they were her only defense.  After he was gone she looked at me and said, “I always cry when I see famous people." Then, she burst into tears! Later we decided that it was fine that she had acted this way. It had made the whole situation more dramatic and therefore much more fun!

About two hours later Mitt Romney lost the election, and let me tell you, that party shut down faster than a jackrabbit on hot pavement. So I left to join some of my fellow DC programmers who had spread themselves around the city at private parties, in clubs, in the excitement filled streets, and even at the White House where thousands of people had gathered and where apparently, a naked man had climbed a tree.

I know that many of my fellow programmers this semester chose to come to D.C. to be here on election night. I can only speak for myself, but I have to say, D.C. did not disappoint! 

Lesson of the day: No matter how successful your day has been, a dashing tan man can always turn it around... Unless, perhaps, you're Mitt Romney.

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