I covered Obama’s visit to Southern Maine Community College today. The routine for getting in was much more of a process than it was when I covered his stop at the Portland Expo in 2010.
First us media people had to put all of our stuff up against the external wall of the building, by the press access area. A police dog (a real-life fricking K-9, you guys) barked and snarled his way through our things. He stopped for a second to bite my messenger bag which was full of three things that were not bombs: A netbook, a power adapter for said netbook and a reporter’s notebook.
The officer made some magic dog-whisperer hand gesture and grunting sound to make the German shepherd stop biting my things. Then I had to open my netbook in front of a security (Secret Service?) guy, who was wearing a flatcap like mine, except with a four-leaf clover on it, to prove that my laptop wasn’t a bomb. (SPOILER ALERT: It wasn’t).
Covering the president is awesome, you guys.
Above: That’s my view of the president from my spot on the press bleachers. He’s the tiny guy in the middle. The one at the podium who looks like he’s glowing. That’s because he was. It was crazy.
PS: Here’s the best quote of the night from the President: “The reason you all work so hard isn’t because you thought this would be a cakewalk. When you decide to support a presidential candidate named Barack Hussein Obama, you know it’s not a sure thing.”