I was at work when I saw that even Fox was calling Ohio and Pennsylvania for Obama and I realized how this would all end. About an hour later, I was in the basement of the Cantina in downtown San Francisco, among friends and strangers, having walked in shortly after all the networks called the nation.
We drank; we cheered; we watched McCain's unexpectedly gracious concession and Obama's rousing declaration of victory, and I am reasonably certain that by the end there was not a dry eye in the room. The pictures above were taken on my mobile phone, and although one of the people I was with had a better camera, I took these anyway because I think these images capture our subjective experience of the speech better than more optically faithful ones.
Of course, if you've been reading my writing recently, you know that a substantial part of me remains guarded and skeptical as to whether this election will truly turn the nation around, rather than merely arresting its precipitous decline. And these blurry pictures work in that sense as well: we glimpse the future only dimly and through a glass.
But still — tonight, for the first time in years, what we glimpse might not horrify us.