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Nov 1: Blast Off: Deployment to Swing State Colorado

I'm sitting on the floor of an office strewn with egg crates full of papers, computer cables, and Halloween candy wrappers. I think it's 10:30pm, though between the time difference and daylight savings, I can't be sure. I spent about 12 hours in transit, from car to bus to plane to car to bus to car. I'm glad I made it here; there was a tense moment at the Pueblo Greyhound station when all the buses had left and it was just me and a couple of guys who couldn't walk straight and were lamenting-loudly-the loss of their bag 'with all our stuff in it.' Just as I was starting to wonder whether an empty bottle of Snapple could be used for self-defense, Travis showed up.
I don't think I'll be needing my self-defense skills for office work, although the altercation I just witnessed between two of Travis's colleagues was begging for some kind of intervention. These people have been working insanely hard for two months, and it's taking its toll. Travis looks like, well, like he sleeps four hours and night and gets all his nutrition from 7-Eleven. The dispute between the two girls was clearly borne of sleep deprivation and will no doubt look a little silly in the morning.
What's clear, as I overheard Travis reminding those two, is that we're all on the same team. Everyone one of the staff I've met tonight is here because she believes an Obama administration would be the beginning of the kind of change this country needs, and she's willing to go a few nights without sleep for four years of knowing that she made it possible. Tonight I met canvassers, field directors, and office staff-a good cross-section of the workers involved in this campaign. One of the canvassers, a good looking guy in his early twenties, told me that until he took this job he hadn't even planned on voting; this is his first time. So despite the frustration and exhaustion that's hanging in the air around here, people are inspired. I could see that look on the faces of the canvassers we picked up on our way back from the bus station this evening: the look of relief from having simply spoken to people. I know, from having canvassed in Las Vegas last weekend, that there's a deep satisfaction on standing face to face with strangers and listening to what concerns them and what they believe, whether or not they share your opinion. On that note, I'd better get back to entering some data from today's canvassing in order to be ready for a new day tomorrow. And then I'll enjoy that extra hour of daylight savings sleep.

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