7:15 a.m. -- Get in the car to drive to the North Dakota delegation's hotel to join them at the delegates' breakfast.
7:55 a.m. -- Arrive at the N.D. delegation's hotel. Run into some of the delegates and visit with them in the hall.
8:00 a.m. -- Go in to the breakfast, get some breakfast and sit down to eat.
8:06 a.m. -- David Strauss (N.D. State Party Chair) gets up and speaks. He has a folder filled with all the invitations he has received on behalf of the delegation. He invites everyone to rummage through it and take any invitations they want. He tells the delegation what they need to know for the day or for any events on upcoming days that they should know about. Then he introduces a speaker or two. Maybe the sponsor of the breakfast, or maybe Congressman Pomeroy.
8:35 a.m. -- Breakfast meeting done. Visit with delegates and others for a while afterwards.
9:15 a.m. -- Get on a chartered delegate bus outside the hotel and ride directly to the Colorado Convention Center, downtown.
9:40 a.m. -- Arrive at the C.C.C. Delegates head into the convention center to go to caucus meetings. We need to get our media credentials at a hotel that's about 7 or 8 blocks away. Start walking to 16th Street to get on the free city shuttle bus that takes us close to the hotel where we get credentials. We get one floor pass (basically a coveted "all access" pass, minus the backstage and secured areas).
10:10 a.m. -- Arrive at hotel. Get in line. Get credentials for the day. Walk back to 16th Street to get on the shuttle to head towards the Big Tent. The Big Tent is between 15th and 16th, on Wynkoop; at the opposite end of 16th Street, which is the major pedestrian (plus buses) street through the heart of lower downtown (lodo).
10:30 a.m. -- Arrive at the Big Tent. If you haven't seen the pictures in the Photobucket, the big tent is a working area for bloggers. I was almost reluctant to post the photos because they kind of make the place look like a dark, dreary, place with automatons diligently focused on their laptop monitors. The thing is, it's not like that at all. The place is constantly buzzing with action. There's almost always some political or news media celebrity walking through, interviewing someone. There are almost always 3 or 5 or 7 webcast interviews going on all around us. People are drinking and eating and talking and arguing. When we arrive at the Big Tent, we head to our "usual spot" near the interview area and set up our laptops, sit down, find power and start looking for something about which to blog. I'll read the North Dakota news websites (or a couple of them) and try to find something worth writing about. Good luck with that. I check my e-mails to see if I've gotten any news tips, notes from home or work, etc. Then I'll write a blog post. Sometimes they get posted; sometimes, not.
10:45 a.m. -- Somewhere nearby there's a loud whistling noise. That's the sound -- we've all learned -- of one of the batteries in the Big Tent going dead. See, the Big Tent is actually a 2 story tent temporarily set up in a parking lot between two downtown buildings. It doesn't have plumbing or electricity built in. (We use the bathrooms in one of the adjacent buildings, owned by one of the sponsors [Alliance for a Sustainable Colorado; google them, by the way]. The whistling continues until one of the many staffers or volunteers takes the culprit, hauls it away and replaces it with a fresh one. This happens 3 or 4 times a day, per battery (I'm guessing). Sometimes a breaker pops because they don't have enough power to handle the load of all the gear plugged in. We can usually bleed a little more life out of them while waiting for a new battery by simply turning the battery off and then on. There's one of these batteries at the end of every table. They look like a piece of rolling carry-on luggage, with the handle all the way up.
11:00 a.m. -- There's a speaker upstairs. Probably a big-shot politician, new media person or the like. There are big flat panel monitors all over in this place. They've either got national news about the convention or the upstairs program on the screens. I go up and watch for a while. Keep in mind that there's nothing going on in the Pepsi Center right now. The gavel doesn't go down to start the convention until 3pm.
11:30 a.m. -- They're starting to serve lunch. It's catered, buffet style. It's a burrito or a wrap or something like that. There are water in many of the corners of the room. We keep hearing that the altitude in Denver can cause dehydration, so drink plenty of water.
11:33 a.m. -- Google is giving away fruit smoothies all day, again, today. I go out and grab a couple. They're set up in rows and are (separately) the colors of the google logo. And they're good.
11:45 a.m. -- I get some lunch. It's a sandwich. Turkey, jalapeno, bacon. Good bread. There are also sides of stuff. Cole slaw, etc. It's pretty good.
12:00 p.m. -- Realize I haven't blogged about anything because I've been visiting with people from all over the country all morning and reading the news looking for something to blog about and drinking smoothies and eating lunch. Geez. Get after it.
12:15 p.m. -- Look through the convention agenda to try to figure out which events I'm going to attend and which ones Adam is going to attend.
12:16 p.m. -- Pose for some guy who wants a picture of me wearing my hat. Thanks Beth.
12:18 p.m. -- Back to the agenda.
12:19 p.m. -- The guy next to me just got done talking to someone at the Alliance for a Sustainable Colorado. He tells me about it. They sound like an awesome organization. North Dakota would be lucky... You know, if John Hoeven spent 30 seconds each day thinking about how to make North Dakota a better place, he'd figure out a way to get an organization like ASC going in North Dakota. Three words: Lack. Of. Leadership.
12:40 p.m. -- The guy next to me (from AveryVoice) is interviewing (for a webcast) the woman across the table. I listen in. She blogs for one of the more heavily-trafficked national blogs, FireDogLake. Who knew?!?
12:45 p.m. -- Realize I don't have a link to FireDogLake in my blogroll. Add one. Ask all the other people around me for their web addresses and ad them to the blogroll.
1:00 p.m. -- Geez. Where's that agenda.
1:15 p.m. -- Katie Couric is standing right behind me. I turn around and take a picture or two. She's short. Pretty, but short.
1:30 p.m. -- There's a guy (?) wearing a raccoon costume over there. What the? Back to reading the news.
1:45 p.m. -- Realize I still haven't blogged about anything.
1:50 p.m. -- Everybody at the table is talking about some guy and pointing. It's Willy Geist from MSNBC's "Morning Joe." He's 10 feet away, at the end of our table, interviewing some Cheetoh Eater who lives in his parents' basement.
1:53 p.m. -- ...
(I'm typing this Wednesday morning... It's time to hit the showers... I'll try to continue this later.)