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Jun 03, 2008

The Clinch


I looked at a mountain of pics from Obama's decisive night, and kept coming back to this one.

First, I appreciate the color of Michelle's dress, reprising -- at least to me -- the '04 conclusion that America (in contrast to the hyper-polarized red state/blue state dichotomy perpetuated by the media) is actually a lot more purple.

I also appreciate Michelle's proud, private, knowing, understated, intimate and unselfconscious expression, as well as the lack of tension in each partner's body.  Observing them these many months, it is evident to me that the Obamas' ability to remain so relaxed is a natural expression of confidence.

Mostly though, I tried (fruitlessly) to imagine John and Cindy or Bill and Hillary celebrating the impending nomination with a fist bump, illuminating the fact that, as much as anything, the gesture -- just like this outcome -- is truly a generational thing.

(Click "Share This" below, then "Send/Email," to give "the bump" -- and The BAG -- to some friends!)

(image:  Scott Olson/Getty Images.  June 3, 2008.  St. Paul, MN)


Great pic.

She's gonna make a kick-@ss First Lady and he'll help restore pride all across America and help repair relations with the rest of the world.

I'm not gonna miss "Pickles" a bit.

The picture says it all. It's wonderful to see a couple who still seem to like each other. I see great things in our future!

Bill & Hillary's body language in public always reminded me of a business meeting instead of a married couple.

Great photo of a very personal exchange. Her encouragement must have worked because that was an excellent speech. I was able to see all three speeches last night and the crescendo from McCain to Clinton to Obama was amazing to watch. Clearly McCain needs to abandon the new mold green signs if he intends to win the presidency.

michelle is a goddess.

I love this picture. (and the real-ness that it unselfconsciously reveals)

There's also a bit of a challenge in her expression, it seems... that kind of supportive challenge given by someone who truly loves you and "gets" you:
she's like, "okay, you finally got what you wanted; now you better go and make something of it!"

and he's like, "you know it!"

(To me--and I could be reading too much into it--this is a picture of a woman who loves her husband passionately but without subordinating herself to him in the slightest.)

How many couples in the world are lucky enough to have that? (let alone phony, cardboard-cutout politicians, who usually go for trophy wives or tense dynastic alliances)

Michelle IS a goddess.

-envious single white male (from outside of appalachia, 'natch ;-)

She needs to ditch the big pearls--much too Babs Bush.

I don't even want to remember that family in any way.

Wow. Ain't she great?

Watching the speech, I'm convinced that as he finished and turned to her, I saw her mouth the words "I love you."

As a guy madly in love with DairyStateMom, I found that to be a warm and very real exchange. The chemistry between them is palpable.

I love them. They love the way that they look at one another. Michelle rocks.

agreed. you put it well, and that's how i felt. and the body posture mirrors the approach. sincere, confident, original (at least in the context of gestures seen by presidential candidates during such events).

i sent it to my brother (actually sent a different angle of it) and said the times they are a changin' and i'm loving it.

That's pride, the real stuff, unmasked. So much of what happens in front of the cameras seems staged, if not insincere then mediated to give us (the audience) what they (the players) think we want to see. This is a rare moment.

Usually we get less manipulation, more sincerity from spouse's faces when the context is slightly changed. For example, Mrs David Vitter, Mrs Larry Craig, or Mrs Eliot Spitzer.

nezua, my very first impression of this image included that song. These guys were toddlers when it was first played. It's still strong in a different world 40+ years later.

Your old road is
Rapidly agin'.
Please get out of the new one
If you can't lend your hand
For the times they are a-changin'.

yeah, black dog barking! get out of the new one if you can't lend ya haaaaaand that's it. i'm feeling it. and it's not the first time i've sung it to myself this campaign. so much if it feels like New Guard Meets the Old Guard.

hey. i don't even think i was born when that was released, i have to admit! wasn't this tune released in 64ish? 1969 was when i showed up on esta planeta. but i grew up hearing it of course....

The "generational thing" is how the media would like to frame it, but I think we'll be surprised. Our Democratic caucus here in Washington State was comprised of folks in their 50s, 60s and 70s, all white and many retired, all talking enthusiatically about a breath of fresh air brought by Barack and Michelle.

I think "generational thing" is how the MSM would like to frame it. Always focus on conflict, which is the antithesis of the Obama message. The Obama tables at our Democratic caucus here in Washngton State were composed of mostly folks on their 50s, 60s and 70s expressing a breath of fresh air brought by Barack and Michelle.

Go get 'em, tiger!"

And generation is a state of mind, not of age. ;^)

can you post the flip side angle of this ?

this shows barack's expression:

it would great to see both pics side by side.

Great picture of one of my favorite moments from last night, making it one of the favorite moments of my life!

Dylan's song has been in my head a lot lately, too. One minor point, he actually sang that the old road is "rapidly fading". So the road is not only old (like McCain) but actually disappearing (like Bush).

A - on the streets, the kids call the fist bump "daps."

B - the teleprompter is such an important presence in the image, the way it frames her shoulders, and reminds us of the highly scripted nature of the political speech. It contrasts with the seeming spontaneity of the daps. It casts a shadow across her torso, the way it casts a shadow across every speech and every word we seem to hear the campaign.

C - Michelle's forearms are cut and muscled, sculpted even.

D - This is unrelated to the image, but please please please will Obama stop being a sop for AIPAC?

Captain K, yes, it is a generational thing. I think the reason is that so many older people have been through the 60s and early 70s and know that it wasn't just a mirage, as so many in the MSM would have us believe. We've seen what conservatives have done to this country (and are still doing) and how they have destroyed the promise of what we could have become, of what we could have been in the world. Obama is talking to America and telling us we can do it, together.

If anyone heard McCain's speech last night, the sarcasm dripped from his lips. Sound familiar? Also, behind his words I heard the twisted mind of Karl Rove. McC was attacking with sarcasm (in his laconic manner) the very thing Obama supporters like about him.....his truth-telling. McC first has to destroy Obama's ability (or the perception of that ability in the mind of the American public) to talk to America. Obama has hijacked McC's "straight-talk express" and ran with it. We can all see that Obama is real. McC's straight talk has, by comparison, become the petulant rant of an angry old man. And believe me, people in their 70s know that McC is too old for the job.

Michelle's expression is very proud, and there's an element of "I told you you could do this." I think she's more of a risk-taker than he is. But obviously he can be goaded into doing things that he normally wouldn't attempt. They're both lawyers, but he's more of a traditional dot the i's and cross the t's type.

This is a big moment for America. Given the chance to rise above ourselves, we did it! I'm proud of America, and I haven't felt this way since before Kennedy was shot.

I'd love to see the BAG give us some analysis of the shots from the three speeches last night to compare their aesthetics and what they're trying to convey... is the media trying to prettify the lime green weirdness of the mccain speech? did it try to make hill's speech look like she was defeated or still fighting or something altogether different? did the shots of obama play up rockstar and down politician? stuff like that?

just a brief suggestion.

and god, i want michelle's entire WARDROBE plznaokthxbai!

Hey D,
I'm from appalachia and I think Michelle O. is teh shit too. Why go there?

Wow, she's really tall. Isn't he over 6ft?

Please explain to this 62 year old women and her 46 year old English husband the significance of the fist bump?

I loved the picture, but I was puzzled.

At best, no more than a three second interlude. Fallowing the eye to eye fist bump, Michelle turned to walk away, and Obama gave her a swift, gentle fanny pat...

My kind of guy, even if he sips his beer!


God, I love this picture. At this point in time, I'll take that gesture over a hug and kiss by a mile. It's a sign of strength...a fist... as in, we are going to fight, not each other, but fight to the end to win this thing and take back America. Not a victory gesture, but a sense of: there's more hard work to be done now. This sense of cool and confident will win the day, not smug and entitled.

And let Michelle wear Mama Bush's pearls! It's all hers, theirs, and ours now to take. The framing of the teleprompter even makes it look like she has wings.

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