Republican National Convention Diary: Day Four 

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By Wednesday, I was feeling cautiously optimistic about my ability to make it though an entire day without disaster. 

I got up early to check out the responses to the two speeches the night before: Ann Romney and Chris Christie. 

Ann had done a great job of looking like a Bone Fide First Lady but the fact that members of the Republican Party were openly hoping she would "humanize" Mitt, did not bode well. Add the speech by Christie where he stuck to his favorite subject (Chris Christie) and this whole convention began looking like a dress rehearsal for the real show in 2016. 

Back to the convention center I went and found what would prove to be very valuable real estate in the form of a table outside the media ballroom. 

I saw George Stephanopoulos walk by and then Candy Crowley came out and went to the elevators. I was too stunned to even pester her. I resolved to introduce myself if I get another chance, although I imagine it'll go something like this: 

"Hi! My name is Melissa Griffin and I am just such a huge fan. I listen to your podcasts while I run because I hate running but I have to, you know? So, I pass the time listening to you interview people and I'm so glad you'll be moderating one of the debates this fall and you're just lovely in real life ... and wait, where are you going? I want to tell you about this one time ..."

As I was scripting my introduction to Crowley in my head, a commotion broke out to my left. A group of reporters was gathered around someone. I could barely make out who it was, as there were cameras on every bit of surrounding real estate and behind them a half-dozen guys holding poles with microphones at the end dropping the "boom" mics into the middle of the scrum. 

Once the dust settled, I coud see the great political mind in such demand: Jon Voight. He did interview after interview and eventually was within earshot. Sadly, he was not discussing missing pages from the diary of Abraham Lincoln's assassin. No, he had come to the convention center where the media is housed to complain about the media. And the (self-loathing?) media was eating it up. I shared an eyeroll with a camerawoman and went back to work. 

Eventually, I had an hour to kill before the show started and set off once again to find food. All the bagels that had been stocked especially for the Yankees (so I'm told) were gone and even the salads had bacon in them. I spotted a circular structure in the distance and headed over to find an adorable bar where the very sweet and very pregnant owner fed me bar snack mix and I listened to a group of delegates discuss all the "ass" they planned to "bag" after the session.

Once the speeches got started, they were short and punctuated by music interludes during which dancing delegates were featured on the Jumbotrons. It was as awkward as it sounds but provided much-needed comic relief. Condoleezza Rice brought the house down and Paul Ryan's speech was so well received, it was like he wasn't giving a speech as much as flirting with the audience. I kinda felt like a third wheel. 

I cut out in time to beat the crowd and went to a nearby restaurant where I finally got some real food. The conventioneers had been nice, the bartender told me. Sean Hannity is a good tipper. (Yes, I always ask; I think this is important.) The rush comes at about 11:30 she said, "Are you gonna stick around?" I was debating it when a group of people walked in. Among them were the delegates from the bar. 

"Check, please." 

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Melissa Griffin

Melissa Griffin

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Thursday, Nov 20, 2014

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