Tonight’s musical selection is inspired by Christy’s post on New Orleans this morning.  It starts with the song that kept going through my head during and right after the hurricane:  Tom Waits’ I Wish I Was in New Orleans.  Sad, beautiful, atmospheric, a valentine to a place and most of all, to a culture, to a people, filled with deep longing and love.  Then it moves into a more bluesy, jazzy character sketch "$29," all performed at the Montreal Jazz Festival in 1981.

We’re thinking of you, New Orleans.  We don’t forget you.  The fight we fight is fought with you in mind. 

I’m exhausted this week, and I did not even go to Connecticut.  How about you? Not being in Connecticut, maybe I felt what some of our communty members felt when many of us were having fun at YearlyKos.  Well, those of you I did not get to meet because I had to keep my nose to the grindstone this week, maybe I can see you next summer at YKos, wherever that may be.  Here’s hoping.

Here’s a little Roots Project update for those keeping score at home:  we had a real nice response from the community to this call for volunteers to take us over the hump to make the site ready for prime time.  We still need to get back individually to everyone who offered to help, thanking them for their willingness to volunteer, though let me blast a big fat "Thank you!" to everyone publicly now.  We’ve assembled what will likely be our development team; I’ve spoken with all of them personally.  They’ll be setting up their work assignments and starting in on God’s work this week.  Stay tuned.  Big stuff coming.

I was at a local Drinking Liberally this week, and as we chatted away about this and that, the subject of our call for tech volunteers came up.  Someone mentioned how hard it can be to find people to help, to get involved.  I’m not experienced in political organizing, so my perspective is probably warped by this awesome community, but I mentioned how I’ve never been disappointed by any call for volunteers we’ve ever thrown out there, ever.  The talent has always emerged when needed.   It happened when we needed help to make the Crashing the Gate book delivery work on Capitol Hill, it happened this week with the need for GOTV help for Ned, and it happened this week when we asked for programmers.  You folks are awesome.

Sometimes you start to write and you don’t know where you’re going, or if you have an overriding theme.  You just throw whatever you’ve got that might taste right in the pot and see what comes out on the other side.  This is post is gumbo, I guess:  bits of stuff from off the shelf, all mixed and slow cooked together.  Speaking of gumbo, I have not tried this recipe, but if you google the words, "best gumbo recipe," this is what you get.

Ned’s win was a super big deal for our movement this week.  Nevermind the wankers in the press and the dinosaurs in the political establishment, shrieking about us and what we’re working to build.  We fight them, and ultimately, we’ll win.  They still have real power, but we’ll win.  Take a bow, everyone. Maybe some other day I’ll write a reflective take on What It All Means, joining the instant punditry chorus, but I’m just not up for that right now.  Maybe I’d like to take some time to figure out what I think, and anyway, there’s no shortage of good analysis out there in the blogs.

I could write more about politics, about the signnificance of Ned’s win, about the current state, strengths and challenges facing our movement, but I’m really feeling more about community tonight.  I guess I just want to say how much I love this community.  The sentiment, the sensibility, that infuses Tom Waits’ I Wish I Was in New Orleans speaks not only to my feelings as an American thinking of my neighbors in New Orleans (whom I’ve been pleased to visit during my many travels), but also to my love for this community. . . I wrote a couple more sentences to this paragraph, but they come across too mushy, so I dumped them.  ‘Nuff said.  Thanks for all you do.

Kick back, relax, chat and have fun.  Talk about whatever you want; I’ve got nothing else to say.  This is your joint:  FDL Late Nite.