Yesterday, Clint mentioned the lengths to which some cable news networks will go to promote themselves during the convention. (Such lengths, if you’re MSNBC, involve hiring workers to don red-, white-, and blue-bedecked elephant and donkey costumes and ride around on Segways, waving at passers-by, posing for photos with gawkers, handing out fliers, and generally engaging in all manner of self-promotional hilarity.)
I happened upon the Cirque du Segway yesterday afternoon, during a lull in MSNBC’s outdoor broadcasting that sent an even bigger crowd than usual in the direction of its free-wheeling
dog-and-pony elephant-and-donkey show. All was jovial as the DNCC delegates posed for photos with the mascots, high-fiving the donkey (“Obama! Yeah!”), giggling at the inanity of it all. Until one delegate, on his way to the donkey for a photo, stopped in his tracks.
“Hey, don’t take my picture with the elephant!” he cried at no one in particular.
The elephant froze for a moment, then spun around forlornly, starting to Seg away. The crowd watched in stunned silence.
But then: “Hey—why don’t you guys give each other a hug?” someone shouted.
And they did.
As cameras flashed, recording the convention’s rare moment of bipartisanship, Don’t-Take-My-Picture-with-the-Elephant smirked. “Well, we’ll never see that in real life,” he said, walking away.Megan Garber is an assistant editor at the Nieman Journalism Lab at Harvard University. She was formerly a CJR staff writer.