We’re ready to release yet another song in conjunction with all the Inauguration to-do.
This one is an Exit Clov tune, called ‘My Country’s At War.’ We recorded it way back in October 2007 with Devin Ocampo. It’s exciting because it’s a departure from the usual Clov fare – a little more acoustic, a little less polished. And we have friends playing & singing on it! How exciting… Ryan Walker (The Beanstalk Library) sings and Kate Rears (ex-Alphabetical Order) plays heart-dissolving cello melodies.
Download the song here:
My Country’s At War
As you can see from above, I went down to the Mall after I found out I would be excused from work on Inauguration day. Waking up at 5:30am was a little harsh on my weak constituency (jk). But half asleep like a blind, hairless new-born chicken in the dark, I proceeded to pile on the layers – 2 long-sleeve shirts, a mousy turtleneck sweater, a thin jacket, an Exit Clov hoodie, my jacket, a pair of offensively horrific long underwear, thigh-high socks, knee-high socks, jeans, 2 scarves and my badass skull boots.
We must have sat in the Metro for 1.5 hrs and didn’t get out onto the Mall until 9:30am. But when we did there was very clearly some kind of joyous fever in the air and everybody was infected. It was like a massive music festival, except it was a celebration of something far huger. Tons of people from all races and classes, old, young and the disabled, a good number of them with their wide-eyed kids in tow, DC locals, out of town Americans and foreigners. Best of all, people treating each other nicely, being patient and winking at each other for being in on the big non-secret. Vendors were hawking Obama T-shirts and doodads everywhere, including a button that said “I WAS THERE.” People were happy. They were optimistic and proud. It was a different feeling… change indeed.
Obama and Michelle were stunningly picture perfect as the new First Couple, one would think they were strategically bred for this job in a stable somewhere. Admittedly, the whole Obama mystique (through no fault of his own) has been inflated into ridiculous icon status without him having lifted a finger yet, policy-wise, as president. But he HAS made history just by winning the election. I guess that counts for something 😉 That may turn out to be his biggest legacy in its affirming reversal of any previous silly notions that America could never elect an African-American to serve in our most sacred office. Now we just have to vote an Asian person in there, and I think we’re all set. har.
The ceremony was exhilarating (Aretha! breathless). Sorry I couldn’t resist this pic, not sure what’s up with the lingerie, but this came up under a google search of ‘inauguration crowds.’ She was Awesome).
If only my toes didn’t feel like a block of stinging ice. But leaving the Mall grounds was a whole ‘nother story. It reminded me a little of the Burn After Reading premiere that Em and I tried to go to awhile ago. Once again we were packed like sardines, trying not to trample the person in front of us while some really friendly happy soldiers funneled us toward a tiny a gateway exit that we couldn’t see. Of course, with hundreds of thousands of totally amped Obama fans, there was this horrible bottle-necking issue. It boggled my mind why the Army decided to have us exit through this grassy, shrubby curbside area with lots of eye-level bushes that were ready to gouge our eyes out if we didn’t flail our arms ahead of us as we went. Meanwhile despite the awkward discomfort, people were making obligatory jokes about the bushes. “HaHA hey everybody, this is like an AAALLEGORY! It’s like, if we could only get past these BUSHES, we’d be home free! HaHA HaHA.” I noticed some small grassy bushes literally flattened underfoot and thought the same thing about Bush. I even felt a twinge of passing sorrow at the thought. One girl struggling in the crowd near us managed to turn to a stranger and say loudly, ‘Hey can I ask you something? I really need to know this. How do you say E-G-G-S? ‘aygz’ or ‘eggs’?” Like wtf! Just concentrate on moving and getting the bleep out of here so other people can go home!
This is the view behind us on 395 after we finally struggled free of the crowds and darted out ahead of everyone. It’s like a modern-day village mob, except it’s a mob of happy people.
We ended up trekking home to Arlington on foot rather than fighting more of the crowds. 2hrs of walking but it definitely made it feel like an exhausting but emotionally rejuvenating pilgrimage to mecca and back.