As Aaron Hagen and I drove to Windom Friday morning to sample the recently opened River City Eatery and talk a little shop outside the office, he told me that today marked a personal milestone of sorts.
Aaron had visited a website that calculates a person’s exact age by minutes, hours or days. He had done this a few weeks ago and learned a big day was fast approaching. And Friday, he informed me, was that day.
“I’m now 10,000 days old,” Aaron told me.
Wow, I thought. And no, my accompanying thought was nowhere near “Wow, you have got to get a life.” I quickly tried to come up with an approximation of my age by number of days, but Aaron got his cell phone, asked my birthday and gave me my total: 16,155. Not nearly as exciting a number as an even 10,000 — though I later checked my number of minutes and determined that in a little more than three years, God willing, I’ll hit the 25-million-minute barrier. I’ll have to make sure that’s one heck of a minute to remember.
Before Aaron told me of his 10,000-day birthday, I guess I’d never really stopped to think of age in terms of days, other than my kids’ ages prior to them hitting the one-month mark. I must admit, though, that I have thought recent presidential campaign seasons, including this one, to be seemingly never-ending. It’s only January, and already I’ve received months upon months of a constant barrage of political emails from both parties regarding President Obama and his GOP rivals. Considering we still have 11 months before Election Day — and the onsalught will only increase as Nov. 6 approaches — 10,000 days isn’t a terrible metaphor for the whole process, though it is in reality grossly inaccurate.
Given its unique, first-in-the-nation status in U.S. elections, it seems as if we finally reached the end of a long countdown with this past week’s Iowa Caucus. I had been looking forward to the event for two reasons: one, I wanted to go and report on the process, and two, I want the event to be over with.
The caucus event I went to inside the Osceola County Courthouse didn’t disappoint me in the slightest. It was standing room only inside the courtroom Tuesday night, and the people in attendance seemed both eager to participate in the process and also well-behaved. During opening remarks from individuals saying why caucus-goers should support their candidate, no one was or booed or heckled — maybe I shouldn’t have expected jeering, but I did. Each person received a polite round of applause after their remarks, including a gentleman who couldn’t have spoken more than 45 seconds about why he liked Michele Bachmann.
The New Hampshire primaries are Tuesday; not too long to wait for the next big political news night. Eventually, we’ll hit Nov. 6 — a mere 304 days from today. It may seem a long wait, but it’s piddling in the grand scheme of things.