Tuesday, January 20, 2009

The Inauguration

It's here, too, if you can believe it - Inaugural Obsession. The Inauguration was all anybody at work was talking about today. People were genuinely excited about it. The first black American President. In our lifetime.

At 10:30 or so local time an email went out ordering everyone to refrain from watching the swearing-in online as it would cause bandwidth issues. Mutters of protest could be heard across the organization. We were lucky - we have a television available to us to watch news or the legislative proceedings when we need to. The swearing-in was conveniently at 12:30 pm our time so everyone took their lunch hour then and watched together. Everybody commented that Aretha's voice and hat both rocked. Everyone gasped and looked at each other when John Roberts flubbed the Oath of Office. (Seriously. How do you not get 37 words [41 if you add a superfluous "so help me God", which is not in the oath, as Roberts did], in bite-sized chunks, right on an occasion like this?) Everyone was silent during the Inaugural Address, which was sobering indeed.

Then, just a little sooner than President Obama and Vice-President Biden, who have some parties to attend, we rolled up our sleeves and got back to work.

(The e-mailed admonition, incidentally, seemed to have little effect, as I couldn't load a single web page until at least 30 minutes after the end of the Inaugural Address.)




Blogger Mike said...

I think there was some significant bandwidth use throughout the tubes. We just had a podcast of the NPR coverage and it kept stopping and rebuffering -- made me wish we had brought in one of them radio thingies our grandparents used to listen to.

8:57 a.m.  
Blogger ronnie said...

I read somewhere today that bandwidth use across the internet rose 52% during the swearing-in ceremony.

I'm almost surprised it was only 52%.

9:10 p.m.  
Blogger Xtreme English said...

that's some hat your AVATAR has! lots of comments on TV about aretha franklin's hat, but it's just like the hats women in africa wear. our nigerian secretary has a couple at least.

10:10 a.m.  
Blogger Xtreme English said...

also, he's not only the first black president, he's the first COOL president!!!

9:54 p.m.  
Blogger Sherwood Harrington said...

XE, as an Amherst grad, I have to take exception to your last comment. Calvin Coolidge was our first... was our... first...


Okay, I can't finish that sentence with a straight face. You're right, Obama's the first pretty cool president, but he's not stereotypically rhythmic, as we saw, and as the Irish Times, with typical verbal skill, noted: From their first dance, to the tune of At Last sung by Beyonce at the Neighborhood Inaugural Ball, the First Lady kept flicking the hem of her gown to keep it out of reach of the first foot.

4:31 a.m.  

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