A recent post over at the Indiana Equality blog was enough of a kick in the pants to remind me to post about some recent events.

If you know me, you know how jazzed I am about Barack Obama. The first time I ever heard about Barack the “Indianapolis” Colts still hadn’t ever won a Super Bowl. It was October 17th 2006, which just so happened to be my 39th birthday. Barack had been to Indiana the previous day to attend a fundraiser for Baron Hill, Joe Donnelly, and Brad Ellsworth (who at the time were three Congressional candidate hopefuls). At the time Jim Shella said:

“He then pointed out that the Colts have been “eeking out victories” while the Bears have been winning blowouts. Ever the politician, he said he’s looking forward to a Bears/Colts Super Bowl matchup.” (At the time of that fundraiser the Colts were 5-0, and in fact did go on that year to face the Chicago Bears in the Super Bowl)

When Barack announced in January of 2007 he was running for president of the United States of America, I started to research him relentlessly. The more I learned about him, the more I liked him. My fire for Obama grew steadily over the months, but the turning point for me was the HRC/Logo Presidential Forum.

“We need a revolution for the people – for the poor, for [those] who have nothing! The politicians and the rich, they’ve already got it all! What do they need?” — Stonewall veteran, Sylvia Rivera at the 2001 NTAC Board meeting in Washington DC

It seems just like old times. Admittedly I’ve been jaded after a decade plus of political activism, with nothing to show for it other than broken nails, broken dreams, broken promises and a broken spirit. Yet just like the old war-horse that everyone presumes is out to pasture, as soon as I hear the battle bell and become inspired, I’m back in the game just as before. This inspiration came from the same source that appears to be inspiring the country, the likes of which haven’t been seen since JFK.

This inspiration is Barack Obama.

So it was that I’ve been wearing out one of my two good pair of Nikes hitting my precinct to get folks to the post-election caucus, and on a Saturday night spending in the heart of Houston’s gayborhood bar district, pushing folks to vote and then go back to the post-primary caucus to elect delegates. Frankly it’s been two very different tales from my suburban precinct here in wild, wild West Houston, and the tony, elite progressive environs of the Montrose.

From my home precinct, one I chaired until 2005 (when economics demanded I start focusing on my own housekeeping before I lost the house I was keeping) it’s been pretty inspiring a response so far. This was a raw meat-red precinct when I took chair in 1999, and it would be another four years before this transitional spot began the domino flipping of red-to-blue in my area. When I turned the chair over to my successor, I never presumed we would have a situation where Texas would ever matter in a presidential primary selection. We never had before.