I'll get to the Smash And Grab title in a bit, but this blog would better be called Matt Zaffino's Indoors. I write from the newsroom in the middle of what is always one of the most exciting and frenetic nights in any newsroom: Election Night. Usually on this night I find myself "field producing", which is to say I'm helping reporters and photographers at one of our remote locations (I was at Oregon Democratic Headquarters in 2000 and 2004) round up interviews and information and assist in getting the live shots on TV. That's because we rarely do any weather in the newscast on Election Day. This year the newsroom "deciders" - God willing we put that type of language to rest on this night - decided we will do a weathercast during the 11 pm news. We'll see about that, but whatever, this is in my humble opinion one of the coolest and most important nights in American history. I look at the video coming into our newsroom, there are parties breaking out all over the city and the country. Everyone is burning up the text lines, phone lines, email lines.
I started the day at 7am in the KINK Live Performance Lounge for the first ever KINK Election Day Town Hall. It was a great way to kick off an election day, with live music from Brett Dennen, whose newest album is appropriately called "Hope For the Hopeless". Senator Gordon Smith, whose congressional fate hangs in the balance at this hour, popped in for a visit, but the real stars of the show were the KINK listeners who showed up to be a part of a good ol' fashioned townhall meeting. It was more Americana coffee shop chatting, a place for people of like and unlike minds to get together and share views and ... hopes. It was a fantastic way to start election day. Perhaps this is the only real loss of living in an all vote-by-mail state, several lamented the loss of the day when voting meant chatting with the blue-haired old ladies at the polling place down the street. This was a little bit of that, and I have to say it felt good! Here are a few pics from this morning:
Brett Dennen Performs
My friend and colleague Sheila Hamilton and I broadcast live
My friend and colleague Dave Scott with Senator Gordon Smith
KINK Listeners share their views and concerns about the election and country
So, Smash and Grab? Friday night I met some friends downtown after work Upon returning to my car, someone had smashed a window in my 1996 4Runner (237,000 miles and going strong thank you) and grabbed my briefcase. I worried about a check made out to me, my checkbook, lamented the loss of some concert tickets and my little digital camera, and most off all the golf ball I had my hole-in-one with. But at least they didn't get my wallet or cell phone. Well it turns out some thieves have consciences too. My briefcase magically appeared on KGWs doorstep Monday evening, apparently dropped off by the smashers and grabbers, minus the camera a few other items that could be sold for quick cash. But they returned everything else, a lot of stuff that would be hard to replace or duplicate. Including the check and my checkbook. And my golf ball. As this election season comes to a close, even thieves give opportunity for hope.