Get me in my 1977 Chevy pickup with KBCO blasting from the radio, head up for a trail run at the Dakota Ridge Red Rocks Trail near the I-70 geologic cutout (the hypoxia makes the colors seem even more intense), then back to town to the Wynkoop Brewing Company for a few pints of Railyard Ale and fish and chips.
That's where I'd be right now instead of inside the Pepsi Center or at Tent State University (although outside is always better than inside in Colorado).
I'm trying to dig some science out of this week's Democratic National Convention being held in Denver this week, other than ranting about bad juju. My years in and around the Mile High City established the foundation of my scientific career and penchant for making beer and wine as Colorado was behind only Oregon and California in leading the craft microbrewery movement.
It's only appropriate that Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper will be speaking tonight at the DNC. As an unemployed geologist in the late 1980s, Hickenlooper and partners purchased an old property, the J.S. Brown Mercantile Building, in the then-near-seedy section of downtown and cleverly secured historic landmark status (and tax breaks) to establish the Wynkoop Brewing Company (no link since the homepage blasts music at you). The Wynkoop, home to Thursday night Pharmboy lab gatherings and billiards, is the definitive Denver brewpub and is always worthy of a pilgrimmage, especially as it celebrates its 20th anniversary this year.
Speaking of Denver food and drink, folks out there may care to pick up a copy of this month's 5280 magazine (to which we still subscribe, for many reasons). The cover above was designed by Obama ManifestHope artist, Shepard Fairley, and various versions of this image are available for download, even to your iPhone. The Top of the Town listing online gives you links to whatever you need while in Denver.
Scroll down on this page to "Lunch Money" to find some restaurants reasonably close-by where you can enjoy fine food outside the crush of downtown.
But pick up a copy of the magazine itself because there is a nice CD-sized booklet with some of the best recommendations and a map to orient yourself if your PDA or iPhone is having trouble pulling up maps on the overloaded cell signals.
Back to the politics briefly. This issue of 5280 closes with an interview of Gary Hart (not available online), former Colorado senator and presidential candidate during the 1980s. Despite all of the hoopla this week and of that to follow with the Republican National Convention in St Paul, Hart says in the final paragraph of the interview:
The mystery that may only be resolved after November 4th: How big is the latent racist vote in America? There's no way to know because people don't tell the truth about this. Very few people say, "I hate black people."