Squeeeeeeeeeeeee! or: The Best Photo in the Universe

by Shaker Veace, who co-authors the film review website Bitch Flicks with Shaker AmberL, and by new Shaker Twinkletoes, who often takes himself too seriously.

Veace: When Shaker Twinkletoes, aka my friend Travis, told me he'd actually gotten to meet Hillary Clinton at a North Carolina rally during the election, I flipped. I'd seen her speak two times, once in Kentucky and once in New York City, and on both occasions, I got close enough to almost touch her, but never actually got to touch her, let alone have an interaction with her that involved speaking and eye contact and smiling and completely freaking out while people innocently snapped photos in the background.

I even waited in line for three hours at the NYC rally, and it was where Hillary declared that she wasn't giving up, that she planned to stay in the race. But I didn't get to sit in the auditorium to hear her say that. Right before it was my turn to go inside, they announced to the still-massive crowd waiting outside that the auditorium was filled to capacity. I happened to be on the phone with Travis at that point, and I started to tear up (yes, I really love her) as they ushered the rest of us into a small side-room with a big screen TV where we could at least watch her deliver that historic speech together.

However, one mustn't forget that Hillary is amazing. And because she is so amazing, she actually came into the crappy side-room after her speech, along with Chelsea (squeal), and shook hands, signed autographs, posed for photos, and pretty much sent the entire room into orgasmic joy. But I still didn't get to meet her! So you can imagine the extreme jealousy I felt (while also trying to force air back into my lungs from laughing. so. fucking. hard.) when I received the following photo of Travis in my inbox.

My favorite thing about this? Um, basically everything. The Hillary button. The unabashed ecstasy that is Travis. Hillary. The two young women. The secret service guy slash Terminator cardboard cutout in the background. And even better, the fact that Travis didn't know this photo existed until a friend ran across it on Yahoo News.

Now it's showing up all over: In a newspaper in France, as my screensaver, as an e-card I just sent to my boss (who has never met Travis but desperately wants to), and on several websites, one in particular that refers to him as "Twinkletoes the Fanboy"…

* * *

I am Twinkletoes the Fanboy. Accept it. I have.

There are few things in life to get this excited about: Happy hour, two-for-one happy hours, three-for-one happy hours, late night happy hours, and Hillary Clinton.

During the primary, I watched every debate and stayed up all night for voting results to come in. I didn't have a TV at the time, so I watched the d-rate internet reporters from CNN. (Not worth it.) I even offered my students doughnuts if Hillary took Ohio and Texas, which I happily stuck to. When the NC primary came, I cancelled the classes I was teaching and trolled myself at a god-awful hour to High Point to see Hillary make a last-ditch plea to North Carolinians. She was down 10 points in the polls. I had recently made calls for her campaign, and most ended in cursing and phone slamming. Not all genius is recognized.

Her speech was brilliant and included 35 minutes of more wonderfulness than any news sound-bite had to offer her. (Sound familiar?) She spoke of energy independence, strong foreign policies, renewing America's faith in the economy, and bringing home troops from Iraq in a safe and responsible manner. Did I mention I creamed myself three times? (And this from a gay man who respects and praises the vagina, but kindly leaves it to others.) And I got a wonderful photo with her. See?

The Travis, the Hillster, the Teeth. Amen.

Yahoo Photos caught my gayer side. I try to tell people that I was moving aside to let others see her and thus my hands were up and pulled in. But it is a lie! The truth: I was screaming this to her in joyous sobs: We're going to do this! We're going to take North Carolina! I love you! I LOVE YOU!

Now, the Twinkletoes picture crops up at the most random of times. It has been used to help potential job hunts, been laughed at by my extended family, and apparently made its way to an underground French newspaper. Oui. The picture is just the icing to a day that was too good to begin with. In fact, I'd say the picture doesn't even do justice to my excitement. Granted, I'm 100% thrilled that Hillary is the face and voice of America abroad, but I'd love to see her womaning the helm. Pretty much every action she's taken thus far as Secretary of State has made me respect her even more. Just know the joy on my face does nothing to represent the moment she spoke.

At the rally, there was a mother with her 6 year-old-daughter. She had taken her out of school for the day because she wanted her daughter to see a strong, intelligent, FEMALE leader. The crowd was dense, but when everyone saw the little girl, we all stepped back and gave her front-row access. She stepped up on the rails and leaned over the entire time Hillary spoke. She even had a button with all the presidents' pictures on it and Hillary's face in the middle with the words "First Woman President!" (Maybe still…)

You can't see it in the picture, but when Hillary walked up to her, she stopped, leaned over, and talked to the girl. She put her hand up to the secret service, let the girl hug her, and said to her, I was a little girl like you once.

Cut to me creaming myself. Again. Twinkletoes do that sometimes.

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