The first time I heard Obama speak was on an iPod. The old touch-wheel type — remember those? — and I’d downloaded a bunch of speeches from the 2004 Democratic National Convention. And his, it made the hairs on my neck stand up. It gave me goosebumps. Tears in my eyes. It made me believe. Believe that maybe there were politicians out there that legitimately believed in the promise of America. My then-wife, Carolyn, and I listened to it, and I said, “That guy is going to be President someday.”

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List of Crappy Shit That’s Happened in My Life, To Date

So with my birthday coming up tomorrow, I have been thinking a lot about my life. I decided to start putting it into context and used Wikipedia to put together a list of all the bad stuff that’s happened since my life began. Next year, I’ll do the list of all the good things that have happened since the same date. Sound like a plan?

• the Christmas bombing of Hanoi

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