November 1, 2006

Madison, Washington, Madison, Washington, Madison.

I'm usually pretty solidly situated in Madison. But tomorrow, I must fly to Washington, D.C., for the American Association of Law Schools recruitment conference. I'm the chair of the Appointments Committee here at the University of Wisconsin Law School, and I've got a lot of interviewing to do on Friday and Saturday. If you're interviewing with us, let me say, I'm looking forward to meeting you. If you're participating in the conference: good luck. I know how stressful it is for you and hope you keep your spirits up. It's a wonderful thing to be a law professor, and not a day goes by when I don't think consciously about how lucky I am to be here. May you all find a happy place.

I'll be traveling back soon enough, but then returning to Washington on Election Day to do that CNN thing I talked about here. I've been thinking a lot about what it will be like crowded into a lounge -- on camera -- with two dozen bloggers all watching the election returns. These folks -- from what I can tell from reading the blogs -- are deeply invested in the elections. Do I really want to see them -- in the flesh -- reacting to each new dose of news? Watching election returns in a party setting is conventional -- not that I've ever done it -- but it's quite abnormal to put people from across the political spectrum together. What will that be like? And all these people who are good at tapping out words from a distance... do they really know how to interact in a complex group setting? All I know is that I'm going to be observing and writing about them. I think I'll be the least outcome-oriented person there -- and also the oldest -- so I'm picturing myself as the ultra-cool observer of the scene.

But then I'll come back home and re-ensconce myself in Madison. The election will be over, and whatever is going to happen will have happened, and there will be job candidates to entertain and escort around Madison, as the semester slides to a close.

29 comments:

tiggeril said...

I'll be in happy place when the people who make campaign ads in Illinois are shot into the sun.

Fenrisulven said...

I'll treat you to lunch or dinner when you get in town, if ya want. Even give you a ride from the airport.

Cheers
Fen

Ann Althouse said...

Fen: I may take you up on that. Email me!

Brent said...

"This is CNN.

Welcome back to E-lection Nite Blog Party. And now, to the voice of reason in the room, Professor Ann Althouse . . ."

Joe Baby said...

I don't know how you can handle that CNN scrum w/o boozeblogging it.

Ruth Anne Adams said...
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George said...

Prof.--

Being on CNN on Election NIght presents you with the opportunity of a lifetime.

Ask yourself, "What can I do so that Matt Drudge plasters my face across his page the next morning?"

Here are some suggestions:

a) Slam down a pint of Jack Daniels, and let 'er rip.
b) Slap Wolf Blitzer silly
c) Confess to the nation that when you were a child, your (pick now deceased relative) took you and (name something from a Madonna video).
d) Wear some of that Laurie Dhue-type lip gloss.
e) Complain on-air that there's no Diet Coke and all the other sodas are lukewarm.
f) Flirt with Morton Kondracke.
g) Thank all the little people who tirelessly post comments, people like tiggeril, fenrisulven, brent, joe baby, and ruth ann adams. Then get all misty-eyed and start sniffin' and stuff..

MadisonMan said...

I wonder: will the blogtastic Election night extravaganza be anything like a Faculty meeting?

Johnny Nucleo said...

Take some pictures. Actually, only take pictures if Wonkette is there. If she is not there, then whatever.

If Wonkette is there, have someone take some pictures of you and Wonkette together. They do not have to be dirty pictures. I will photoshop the pictures to make them dirty.

If Jane Hamsher is there, do not take her picture. Jane Hamsher is hot but she is very insane and I am concerned for your safety if you try to take her picture.

Anonymous said...

Ann, I must say I'm looking forward to reading your reaction to the CNN blogathon (whatever they're calling it) - not so much for the election night insights you'll be giving us (though I'm sure they'll be spot on), but more for the insights you'll be able to give us on the other bloggers. I'm sure it'll be extremely interesting to see how they react, and then see what they wrote. I'm counting on you to do some first-person reporting here! I hope it's as exciting and interesting as I'm expecting!

Troy said...

Just don't be the blogger posing next to Wolf Blitzer in tight gray shoes and toe cleavage.

Tiggeril -- you ain't seen nuthin' until you've seen the Cruz Bustamonte Lt. Gov. ad for CA -- "I lost 70 lbs. so vote for me!" It is amazingly bad. The bluest of blue states is going to have a red Lt. Gov. (Tom McClintock) and a sort of mauve Gov. (perhaps purple?) -- Arnold is a mixture of red and blue.

Troy said...

Ann... your blog headline reads like a punchline to some joke concerning the Founding Fathers or 1940s era movie schtick with James Madison and George Washington and Dolly and Martha all meeting and doing the meet and greet.

Maxine Weiss said...

"....how to interact in a complex group setting? All I know is that I'm going to be observing and writing about them"

Sitting in a boiler room full of wonky slackers watching them watch you as you write about them writing about .......an election?

I'm just not getting the vibe here. Just doesn't feel like the most dynamic group setting I can think of.

Peace, Maxine

Townleybomb said...

Congrats on the televisedness!! I would absolutely watch if I had cable-- which would probably be the first time that I'd watched TV news for several years. Be sure to let the folks at CNN know this-- I assure you that I am in a very lucrative demographic, and you might be able to leverage this into your own show!

Also, I will personally come down to DC and buy you all kinds drinks at Madam's Organ if you manage to steer the conversation to that time you thought you had a squirrel in the house. Again, that kind of talk is big with my demographic

Ann Althouse said...

The best way to watch will be on CNN.com on the "Pipeline" feed. You have to subscribe, but there will probably be a free trial option and, if not, a cheap day pass (99¢).

Helen said...

Ann,

Glenn and I were thinking of coming to the CNN party--it sounds like fun! However, Glenn will be doing the show by webcam from Knoxville. We will miss getting to meet bloggers like you and some of the others in the flesh. I am always amazed at how different (or the same) some bloggers are in person than on their blogs. I look forward to reading your interpretation of the election results and of the blogger event itself. You seem to be part artist, part psychologist in your observations of people and their mannerisms, etc.

Internet Ronin said...

Have fun. I probably won't watch (although I will undoubtedly read your posts that night). I'll be more interested in your observations AFTER the experience, though.

Ann Althouse said...

Ronin: Good implied point. If I post something about someone in the room, they might come over and get me...

Internet Ronin said...

True. With decades of first-hand experience behind me, it is my opinion that genuinely political animals of the partisan variety can become quite unstable during times of stress, particularly on election day (even when things are going their way).

Maxine Weiss said...

Making Hay: This election has been overhyped.

Herding a bunch of self-important wonks into a big room, and watching them watch eachother watch a tickertape....won't change that.

Peace, Maxine

Truly said...

Hey, if there's going to be an Althouse Fest in DC, I want in! Forget Madam's Organ, let's go to Brickskeller!

Dave said...

Good god I love the Brickskeller. Thomas Hardy's Ale, anyone??

Simon said...

Truly said...
"[I]f there's going to be an Althouse Fest in DC, I want in!"

Were something like that to happen (and it isn't a bad idea, although we should let Doyle calm down after the election), I would urge Chicago as a venue, not D.C. Although I suppose technically, it would pretty much have to be Madison.

Internet Ronin said...

although we should let Doyle calm down after the election

I must have missed the news - when did pigs start flying?

Simon said...

Ronin-
I think that the election's just setting everyone on edge a little, and things will settle back down once the smoke clears. Don't you think the atmosphere here has been more fractious than normal in the last few months?

Internet Ronin said...

Yes, Simon, I do. At the same time, there are people who are in a perpetual state of excitement over this or that perceived slight, ill, or shortcoming. They also tend to be so excessively partisan that it is virtually impossible to tell whether they have any genuinely individual beliefs or mindelessly repeat wahtever the latest missive from party HQ suggests as the talking point of the day.

(It is a quality not confined to partisans of one side or the other, BTW)

Ruth Anne Adams said...
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Ann Althouse said...

"What was so important in Madison that you had to return home?"

Well, I've had a glorious Sunday! But, more significantly, I have a class on Monday. And an extremely significant Appointments Committee meeting -- and I'm the chair.

And I just didn't feel like hanging out in Washington before the big show. I can collect my thoughts better here.

Also: I have to vote!!!!

Ruth Anne Adams said...
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