One Father For Dean
A Father and His Politics....

Tuesday, September 23, 2003

The Parable of The Diner and The (Four-Star) Restaurant 

Every single Democrat should be able to insert their favorite candidate here....


A Parable of The Diner and The (4-Star) Restaurant:

You show up in town, the first day of college / work / the rest of your life. You're hungry - starving - feels like you haven't had anything to eat in weeks, months. Maybe it's actually true.

As you walk down the well-worn street in what was formerly the hive of this guilded city, you see people heading into a bell-rung door with a hand re-painted neon sign overhead - could have been done by the patrons, you think. You're intrigued. The door never seems to close. Those entering and exiting wear t-shirts and buttons extolling the diner's name. What is this?

Upon jumping into the commotion of an entrance, you a greeted by an overwhelmingly earnest warmth and the bracing sound of....people. Everywhere: people at the counter, people waiting in line, people chatting, people in booths. The din reminds you of a Greek wedding. They are upscale and downscale; gray, raven and bleach blond; men, women, and children. Colors shapes and sizes abound.

The space isn't large; the furniture is spartan luncheonette. The waitstaff in parts looks all of slightly less than college age and all of more than a lifetime pushing the lunch special and making tips with the stub of a pencil behind the left ear.

The owners, as they stand behind the counter, are immigrants. Maybe they started bussing tables down the street; maybe they swept the floors at night or collected garbage. Or maybe it was their parents or grandparents or great-grandparents....But then, who in this place isn't an immigrant? They speak with loud voices to the regulars and their short order staff, chiming a smile to their favorites and grimacing for those who ask how it's really going - they don't pull punches. And you can appreciate that.

Eventually you grab a corner stool and tuck into your food - honest, filling, simple...and with a twist of difference. It's the meal you knew your grandmother or grandfather to make, only updated....and amazingly....better. Maybe you haven't had something like this sustenance in such a long time, that it is more a reminiscence than replica, more heart and soul than carbon copy.

In a booth across the way, you overhear a heated discussion above clanking silverware: a new restaurant opening review. A stellar chef with an impressive resume, prime real estate on the growing side of town, dignitaries galore sitting on a waitlist just to get in the door....This is the echelon of eating, or so the story goes. Some say, "sounds wonderful"; others, "I'll wait to see how it pans out".

One gentleman, taking his time to sip his coffee thoughtfully, slowly reminds his table that this is the same restaurant that seems to open every 4-8 years, in exactly the same spot, with exactly the same patrons, only the restaurant name and the owners have changed. "It always gets great reviews," he says, "always lights up the hearts of many with the hope that this time, somehow, it'll last more than just a year or so."

But it doesn't.

As you wipe your mouth of the last pie crumbs and gulp your water, take a breath and survey the scene, it amazes you: that in the midst of being jostled, babies screaming and parents scolding, lovers crying and tempers flaring in the know you are home.

And that will you be back.

Sunday, September 21, 2003

The Digital Domain 

Anya Kamenetz at the Village Voice writes on the blog-ocracy's views of Howard Dean, his campaign and digital rights issues...

Dollars For Democracy 

NTodd from Dohiyi Mir has an article in OpenSourcePolitics about reading his credit card bill and finding Howard Dean as a line item....

As Team Dean swings for the fences, and the Supremes re-consider money, politics and advocacy, it's a timely topic to consider.

The Bat is Back - Q3 World Series 

The 5.5 Bat

The next 10 days will tell the story....