My wife and I drink wine, occasionally beer, and not hard liquor. But yesterday, hoping the polls were right, I wanted to buy a bottle of something to drink to celebrate Obama’s victory. I considered a good champagne but ruled that out since we’d only be drinking our limit of one glass. Then with the image in my mind of the two main characters of the TV show “Boston Legal” sipping scotch on the balcony overlooking Boston at the end of every show, I thought why not buy an expensive bottle of scotch.
I envisioned an early declared win and surprising my wife by bringing out the scotch. That didn’t happen. However then Keith Olbermann, under strict network orders not to “predict” the outcome, dropped his “opinion” that the only way Obama could loose was for McCain to win California, plus Oregon or Washington, which would leave McCain needing to beat Obama in Hawaii to go over 270 electoral votes. I knew we’d be waiting until after 11:00PM to hear the official outcome.
Not wanting to wait, I broke out the 16 year old scotch and we began to sip it every time Obama won a state. My wife drank scotch in college and opined that this was the best scotch she ever tasted. I didn’t like it at all. Even smelling it made me shudder and it felt like a burning in my nostrils.
It was worth it, toasting the TV screen, clicking glasses, shouting YEA, confusing the dogs, and taking a sip. What a scene, two 64 year olds playing a drinking game.
Finally, sleepy and maybe a little tipsy, I took my laptop and we went to bed at 10:00 PM to watch the returns there.
When it was announced for certain that Obama had won tears were streaming down my face.
Even my hands felt wet. I looked down and they had bright red blood over them and there were two drops of red seeping into the innards of the laptop through the crack around the touch-pad.
I had a nosebleed.
This is something I’d only had once before some 30 years ago.
The fumes of the scotch had apparently ruptured a blood vessel.
By the time Obama had completed his speech my nose had stopped bleeding and I thought I’d run out of tears.
But then the Obama and Biden families came on stage and I had to restrain myself from sobbing lest the bleeding start again as I saw the mix of generations and colors on that stage sharing their joy with the world.
Like millions of others, this was a night they will never forget.
For me it was night I bled and cried and rejoiced all at the same time.