Busting Cindy Adams' balls, and other WTF moments from the Democratic National Convention


We awoke this morning and wouldn't you know it: The stench has lifted. You know, that smell that hung heavily all week -- that subtle mix of patriotism (the proud delegates) and patchouli (the street whores), with a touch of bad-ass (Obama) and a slight whiff of bullshit (still Obama). It's wafting its way north now, through the plains to St. Paul, where it will crawl up the noses of every Republican in Minnesota and, if they're not careful, a few unlucky Canadians.

We, of course, are left behind to pick up the pieces, to try to figure out what the hell just happened. So, here, a look back at the week that was. After all, it was the only time in Denver's history that a white-haired, white-collared old man wearing coke-bottle glasses will sit at the bar at LoDo's swanky Spill, watching CNN and sipping Glenlivet. We better not forget it. -- Joe Tone

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Spotting the meth den while in the DNC's Invesco line

Categories: The Donkey Show
Meth ahoy!
Those waiting to get into Invesco Field at Mile High last night to hear Barack Obama’s acceptance speech went on quite an odyssey as the queue snaked this way and that through the stadium’s asphalt wasteland. Attendees were forced to clamber down hillsides, guard against line cutters at parking-lot switchbacks, fend off hordes of T-shirt hawkers – and, unbeknownst to many, amble by a former meth den.More »

Connecting the dots on the DNC Invesco line

Categories: The Donkey Show

invesco%20map1.gif View image.

The line to get into Invesco Field at Mile High for Barack Obama's acceptance speech last night seemed to go on forever - but just how long was it?

Using Westword's advanced mapping tools (Google, a ruler and a calculator), we traced and measured the line's route at about 5:30 p.m. yesterday. As you can see above, the event's organizers chose a, um, circuitous route through Invesco's parking lots.Unfortunately, Google's technology didn't allow us to zoom in enough to highlight the trash-strewn alleyways, slippery hillsides and former meth labs that greeted the wary, sun-baked attendees along the way.

So how long was this queue, exactly? According to our supremely questionable math, at this point in time the line was just over two miles long. In other words, stretched end to end the line would have reached to Coors Field. Of course, then those in line wouldn't have been able to enjoy all that nifty parking-lot scenery. - Joel Warner and Jared Jacang Maher

There and Barack again: the journey to and from Mile High

Categories: The Donkey Show
Lines, lines, everywhere lines.

The day started out so well.

At 10 a.m., my boyfriend and I heard from friends who had two extra community credentials to Barack Obama's historic acceptance speech at Invesco Field. They hadn't been properly "activated" with our names by the deadline the night before, but we suspected that was all just a ruse to deter people from selling them anyway. I mean, it would take forever to scan 80,000 credentials and cross check those against IDs, right?

At 3:30, things were still looking up. We were amazed at our luck finding a legal parking spot on the street just a few blocks north of Invesco. We got to the field and started following the people walking east along the perimeter. I was taken aback to see a line that stretched all the way from the stadium to Federal Boulevard. If only that had been the whole line.

We got to what we had thought was the end and looked down into a parking lot of absolute chaos. There wasn't a single volunteer or security guard in site. Just a line that had grown into a tangled, winding sea of confused people. We found what looked like an end in the middle of the parking lot and settled in for the ride. At this point people were dumbfounded, and found the situation funny even.

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The end of the Democratic National Convention

Categories: The Donkey Show
At last.

Oh yeah: After 8 p.m. during the big Invesco Field at Mile High Show on Thursday, Barack Obama came out and talked for a while. Not a bad speaker... -- Michael Roberts

The Springsteen- and Bon Jovi-free DNC acceptance speech

Categories: The Donkey Show
"Now please welcome... who?"

One of the big debates among inhabitants of section 524 at Barack Obama's Invesco Field at Mile High acceptance speech on Thursday involved the musical acts that would be taking part -- especially the headliners. Over the previous week or so, the media had been filled with contradictory reports. Bruce Springsteen and Jon Bon Jovi are both going to appear. Springsteen won't, but Bon Jovi will. Bon Jovi won't, but Springsteen will. So we were filled with anticipation until the announcer introduced that the final musical act of the night would be... Michael McDonald? The foggy voiced guy from the second iteration of the Doobie Brothers? Singing a somnambulant version of "America the Beautiful" that gave everyone another reason to wish that Ray Charles was still alive? There's got to be someone after him, right? Right? But no -- Springsteen was represented by two spins of "Born in the U.S.A.," and I don't remember hearing any Bon Jovi at all. That kind of decision gives love a bad name. -- Michael Roberts

The downside of patriotic displays at the DNC/Obama acceptance speech

Categories: The Donkey Show
The stars and stripes, supersized.

Shortly after the speakers began appearing at Barack Obama's Invesco Field at Mile High acceptance shindig, crews of yellow-smocked minions (whose activities at the Pepsi Center during the DNC were documented here and here) materialized and began giving small American flags to each member of the crowd. But these apparently didn't create an impressive enough backdrop for a cadre of military leaders who threw their support to Obama. Hence, the smocked ones reappeared with enormous flags and searched for volunteers to wave them -- and unluckily for us, a guy sitting directly in front of us signed up. As a result, we saw little of the stage until the flag-bearer handed off the banner to a guy sitting over a stairwell, who could move it back and forth without blocking anyone. That was one decision I saluted. -- Michael Roberts

Al Gore scores at the Obama acceptance speech

Categories: The Donkey Show
Al Gore, bigger than life (if that's possible).

What an unlikely journey it's been for Al Gore. When he ran for the presidency in 2000, he didn't engender the sort of enthusiasm among rank-and-file Democrats that his predecessor, Bill Clinton, enjoyed -- and that accounts for his subsequent loss more than anything Ralph Nader did. Rather than winding up in the Michael Dukakis/John Kerry pariah camp, however, Gore managed to reposition himself as an environmental savior, and after winning an Academy Award and a Nobel Prize, he's now more popular than he ever was as a standard-issue politician. At Barack Obama's Invesco Field at Mile High acceptance speech on Thursday, he earned two standing ovations and more enthusiasm than anyone other than the star of the show. Moreover, the genuine excitement displayed by the folks in section 524 rivaled the rapturous reception given to Clinton at the Pepsi Center during Wednesday's DNC festivities. If F. Scott Fitzgerald had been at the stadium, he might have eaten that line about there being no second acts in American lives. -- Michael Roberts

An empty I-25 outside Invesco Field for the Obama speech

Categories: The Donkey Show
No slowdowns on I-25...

Took a look outside Invesco Field at Mile High around 6 p.m. on Thursday in time to catch an astonishing sight: the security-related closure of I-25, seen here. For a moment, I thought I spotted Will Smith strolling the pavement with his dog, but this was no I Am Legend outtake. This was real. Remember the image during the next traffic jam on this stretch of the interstate -- which will probably lock up a few short hours from now. -- Michael Roberts

Our Obama speech section leader

Categories: The Donkey Show
"And a-one, and a-two."

With hours to wait until the main festivities began, those of us fortunate enough to make it through the huge lines leading to Barack Obama's Invesco Field at Mile High DNC acceptance speech searched for ways to amuse ourselves. No wonder we eventually turned to one of modern spectator-events' dorkiest time killers: the wave. The guy pictured here designated himself as the coordinator of section 524, whipping us into a frenzy with commands like, "Get ready, 5-2-4! Get ready..." As a curmudgeonly type, I generally sit out this activity, but not this time. I hope I made our section leader proud.

Click below for a shot of the folks closest to us in the 524 -- a wonderfully upbeat and diverse group. -- Michael Roberts

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