The Party's Over, Denver
The crowd cheer and confetti flies after Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., gave his acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention at Invesco Field in Denver Thursday, Aug. 28, 2008.(AP Photo/Alex Brandon) (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
I'm concerned about Denver right now.
For almost a year that hot-shot big spender known as The Media lavished attention on the DNC's host city, telling Denver it was the most important city in the world, sweeping the Mile-High City even higher off its feet.
It culminated in a heady week of spectacle, capped off on Thursday by a stadium extravaganza with a cavalcade of stars like Stevie Wonder, Sheryl Crow and Barack Obama!
That night 38 million people watched Senator Obama accept his nomination in Denver. The city had never looked lovelier.
And then … it was over.
By early Friday, The Media had packed its bags and skipped town before Denver even woke up.
No goodbye. Not even a note.
"Do you feel a little bit of a letdown?" Rocca asked one resident.Now The Media is off to romp with those twin cities, Minneapolis and St. Paul. Oh, they'll get caught up competing for the affections of The Media. But make no mistake. Next week, they'll be left high and dry, spinster twin cities.
"It's kind of like, yeah, it's like post-partum."
One woman told Rocca that caffeine helps her deal with what he termed post-convention stress disorder.
Every four years the state of Iowa goes through the same thing. The political circus comes to town and spends millions. Then as soon as the caucus votes are counted, it's over.
Iowa is wise to this.
But Denver's only other political convention was in 1908. Like the fabled Scottish village of "Brigadoon," must Denver wait another 100 years before coming back to life for us? Until then, should Denver just wipe off its makeup and forget that this ever happened?
Maybe it would be better if the convention had never happened at all.
"Minneapolis-St. Paul is basking in the spotlight right now," Rocca asked one Denverite, "but it will be over for them, too. What advice do you have for them?"Yes, Denver, another convention will come along. And if one doesn't, so be it: It is better to have loved and lost national Media attention than to have never had any Media at all.
"I think to savor the moment," he replied.
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