A Tale of Two Conventions

DNC – Do Not Come

That was the word on the street in 2012 when Charlotte, NC hosted the Democratic National Convention, and certain groups opposed the event – whether because of politics, crowds, or traffic. I don’t remember it being because of fear of violence; it was more of not wanting the inconvenience. But folks did come. I was one of them.

Hubby wasn’t too excited about my hopping the commuter train, riding the 20 – 30 minutes into uptown Charlotte, and spending the day by myself among thousands of people, but when I woke up Saturday morning I felt this strong nudge to go – so I did. From the moment I found a seat on the train, until I returned to the parking deck several hours later, the day was filled with excitement, music, great food, friends-I’ll-never-see-again, and an energy that was contagious. I had THE best time.

Queen Charlotte and Jester

You can read more about my 2012 experience in my archives.






Of course this year, thanks to COVID, no one was able to come or go to Milwaukee, WI. I never watched the televised conventions in the past. I found them too noisy, too boring, and well, too political. Last week’s Democratic National Convention format changed all that.

After tuning in, just out of curiosity to see how this socially-distanced convention would work, I ended up watching every night – and staying up way too late listening to some of the analysis afterward.  I found that without the placards, the screaming and shouting, the balloons, confetti and hoopla, I actually heard what was being said.

The contrast between the two conventions reminded me of the difference between the emotion and creative energy of a writers’ workshop, and the more solid experience of small critique groups, writing partners, and personal daily writing; or the difference between a spiritual high from a religious retreat and the substance of faith.

This year the speakers’ energy seemed to come from within, not from the frenzy of the crowd, making them and their messages more genuine. Watching the pre-recorded clips from around the United States, especially from the John and Jane Q. Publics, I saw the breadth and beauty of our country. I even watched the roll call. I would have never watched the roll call before! Seeing the diversity of our nation in her people – from our colors, our languages and dialects, what our families look like – and the changes in her landscape ‘from sea to shining sea’, strengthened my love for and pride in the United States of America.

I’m glad I grabbed the opportunity to zip up to Charlotte in 2012. Even for an introvert like me, that occasional infusion of crowd-induced energy is a good thing.

But I’m grateful we have the technology to hold and attend this year’s conventions, despite the pandemic’s appearance. It’s another example of our resiliency that I mentioned in last week’s post.

Now to put on my true colors of red, white, and blue and go vote.


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4 Responses to A Tale of Two Conventions

  1. quinonesev1 says:

    I remember your blog from the DNC-2012, I also found this 2020 event surprisingly engaging, and didn’t miss a minute, either-

    Your take on this Convention is spot-on! Thank you for starting my day with excellent writing!

    • Hi Ev!
      Thank you for reading!
      I thought it was engaging too. It will be interesting to see how much of the former format the parties go back to for future conventions.

      I hope you have a lovely day!
      ~ Kim

  2. Susan March says:

    I did not watch the convention . Over the years of being around two Republicans . Mom , & Robert . I switched from Democrat to Republican., I was pretty comfortable with that until this last four years . Now I am not quite sure where I am at . President trump has done a lot of good things , but his mannerisms have ruined him . I know our Family were always Democrats from Grandma , & Grandpa on . I would not have a problem going back to that , but I do not believe in abortion . So I’ll watch the republican convention , & maybe I won’t vote at all , which is something i really believe I should do . God please show me the way . loved your article

    • Hi Susie,
      That’s a tough situation for sure. I hope by the time it’s time to vote – and I hope you do! – you’re able to feel comfortable. I’ll keep praying along with you, too.

      I hope your day is a beautiful one.
      Love you Cuz!

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