I first saw Barack two years ago. He was on the TV in a budget motel in a rundown suburb of Pittsburgh where once upon a time guys had jobs making steel. They used to call the place 'Hell with the lid off', but that is by the by. He was being intervieed by a tanned anchor type with the trademark teeth and as far as I was concerned he was just a candidate who was 30 points adrift of Hilary. Then I started to listen a bit more closely and watch a bit more closely and like millions of others all over the place, I got to thinking maybe, just maybe.... So it was that I became a member of Barack's army. I got home and logged onto his site and tried to donate ten bucks. No go. Not allowed for foreign nationals which is fair enough I suppose. So I got an American friend of mine to do the business on my behalf and sent her a fiver. Oh yeah! Those were the heady days when a fiver bought you ten dollars and bankers were seen as stand up guys. And the rest of course is history.
Now $10 is a drop in the bucket of course but it was a helluva big deal for me. You see it was the first time in my life that I had even dreamt of stumping up a political donation. Well apart from buying Free Mandela merchandise back in the day. And as corny as it may seem, it made me feel pretty good. And of course I wasn't on my own. Little people the world over took their chance to blow their cash on a whisper of hope.
Yesterday I logged onto the Guardian and hit play on the video of Barrack sending his New Year's message to the people of Iran. And all of a sudden I felt even better about my one and only political donation. Talk about pure class! To surpass the sheer undiluted primordial genius of the moment when Fernado Torres made a complete mug out of Vidic and shut up the baying Mancs was always going to be a big ask. But Barack.. you did it! The video is on the player for anyone who hasn't seen it. Is it ever worth three minutes of your time.