DNC Backstage Pass: Here At Invesco Field : Tell Me More TMM Host Michel Martin blogs from Invesco Field in Denver.
NPR logo DNC Backstage Pass: Here At Invesco Field

DNC Backstage Pass: Here At Invesco Field

Rev. Jesse Jackson makes his way through Invesco Field at the Democratic National Convention 2008 in Denver, Colorado, on August 28, 2008. Thousands are in attendance to hear Democratic Sen. Barack Obama accept his party's nomination for President. ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption

Right now, I'm sitting in a lovely breeze at Invesco mile high stadium. The reporters are all trying to grab people while people try to take their pictures of the scene. Mile high could be called "mile long lines" just for the wait to get in the place. We got here early because, well, we're doobies, but now I'm glad we did because the lines to get in are scary long. They're moving fast but, whoa, that's commitment.

I'm filled with bitterness and rage because Teshima, inexplicably, has spotted more celebrities than I have: I saw restaurateur B. Smith and LeVar Burton, and Dan Rather. But she saw Steven Spielberg, Malik Yoba, Gloria Ruben, and Big Bun.

I keep telling her it's because I am focused on REAL people, not celebrities, but then she gets tells me to tell it to the hand.


There's a celebratory air here, like in the hours before a big sports game or a big concert — the same crackle, the same happy anticipation, with too many burgers and hotdogs being washed down to count. On the other hand, there's the weight of history — people like Jesse Jackson and Marion Wright Edelman, who were there at the March on Washington 45 years ago today.

A woman I met, New Hampshire delegate Joanne Dowdell, is black and believes she is the first African-American female delegate from NH. Dowdell couldn't talk about how she felt about being there for the festivities without tearing up.

"My father is 89 and he's seen everything, everything ... and he just never, never thought ... ," she reflected.

I knew what she meant.

On the other hand, I talked to one of Obama's first supporters in the state, Annie McLane Kuster, who was doing her happy dance about having primo seats on the floor. McLane Kuster is from what they call an "old New Hampshire family," which is code for a "mover and shaker" who's related to many other present and former New Hampshire movers and shakers. She is white, so there was no identity politics involved for her. McLane Kuster told me she just came to the conclusion that Obama was what the country needed, that he had the skills and temperament necessary to get the job done. Typical, practical New Hampshirite.

And listening to Martin Luther King III on the podium, I can't help but wonder what it's like for him.

Here still waiting for the Big Speech, still enjoing the breeze. Now they're getting the wave started in the upper deck.

More later.