What a momentous day to start a blog. I've watched our President-elect leave St. John's Episcopal Church as I've watched many Presidents-elect and Presidents do before. I admit it-- I am a genuine Inauguration junkie. I've been glued to the TV for every inauguration since President John F. Kennedy in 1961 when I was just a grade schooler. On the day of his inauguration, they brought a TV into our school and we watched many of the activities of the day, starting with the charismatic man and his beautiful wife leaving St. John's (though I was so far from the TV, I had no idea what I was seeing). I remember the commentators' surprise that he walked bare-headed down the parade route. And I remember such a short time later watching his horse-drawn hearse following a similar route.
Regardless of the political party affiliation of the incoming President, I watch the Inaugurals. I take vacation days, I close my office, I blog while watching the action on my TV. This day represents a uniquely American tradition, the peaceful transition of power from one political "regime" to another.
While I was more a member of the "Sisterhood of the Traveling Pantsuit" than the early Obama supporters, I am hopeful for this new President. On election night, while many were reminded of Martin Luther King Jr., I flashed back to early political memories, to the thrilling rhetoric of "my first" President, John F. Kennedy, with his "Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country." I thought again of that quote when I saw TV clips of Barack Obama painting a wall in a shelter for homeless teens.
As time goes by, it will be obvious that my religious beliefs and theology largely inform my rather liberal political persuasion. These are things that are important to me, my magnificent obsessions, if you will. My faith informs so many of my life decisions. At the root of it, God's faithfulness to God's sometimes faithless people as evidenced in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus.
So two of my magnificent obsessions are hopelessly intertwined. A third is less obviously tied to the others. I love food. I'm intrigued by the textures, the colors and the flavors. I am fascinated by how the flavors contrast and blend and I love developing my own twists and turns in recipes. I'll probably share some of my successes and failures here.
And so, as the current President, George W. Bush, descends the stairs for the ceremony and we await our new President, I end my first post as a blogger. Something so extraordinary as an Inauguration requires my full attention.