The Beehive continues its look back at the events, people and things — locally and nationally — that made 2008 special. Heather started us off with Bee bloggers weighing in on their “Favorite Fresno Event.” Now, I’ve asked everyone to chime in on what excited them in 2008:
Craig Kohlruss, Bee There: Since I already mentioned the Fresno State baseball’s College World Series win as my favorite Fresno event, I’m going to have to go with Sammy Hagar’s arrival in Fresno for his highly anticipated free concert at Cabo Wabo. Although I went to the restaurant early to get photos of all the hard-core fans lining up for tickets, I did not attend the show. I did, however, hear that people had a pretty good time. Too bad all the Sammy mania was so short-lived. (Photo by Craig Kohlruss: Sammy Hagar fan and look-alike Dennis Allen waits for free Sammy Hagar concert tickets with fans outside Cabo Wabo in Fresno)
Mike Oz: iPhone madness. True, the first iPhone dropped in ’07, but the iPhone 3G attracted a lot of attention when it was released in July. I took the day off work trying to get one — but failed. I got my iPhone a month later and my world is forever connected. Thank you, Steve Jobs.
Heather McLane: Of course, the most exciting moment was watching Barack Obama get elected president. Closer to home, however, the thing I found the most thrilling was watching (from a great distance, alas) filming for “Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull.” It was so exciting to see Steven Spielberg and Harrison Ford doing work on one of my favorite movie franchises here in my own backyard. Ultimately, I didn’t care so much for the film, but that day still holds up in my memory as genuinely exciting.
Felicia Matlosz: This stumped me for a bit. Until I realized that what excited me the most in 2008 wasn’t a moment but a saga, the year’s most dramatic, intense, unpredictable story: The election. There was the epic battle between Barrack Obama and Hillary Clinton; John McCain’s near-death candidacy and its resurrection to the GOP nomination; the never-boring spectacle of Sarah Palin; and all the events in between (such as Tina Fey’s spot-on impersonation of Palin, the Rev. Wright controversy, Tim Russert’s death and all those viral videos from Paris Hilton to will.i.am). Political junkies like myself and my friends couldn’t get enough of it.
Traci Arbios, Central Valley Moms: For me, this year’s most exciting moments revolved around the presidential campaign. The first was nearly a year ago, Jan. 8, 2008, when, as an undecided voter, I watched the New Hampshire primary returns. Hillary had a breakthrough at a press conference and it was clear that she would win. I liked both candidates quite a bit, but I wasn’t much swayed by either one’s campaign rhetoric. Until that night. The first at the podium was Obama, offering his concession speech. Chris Matthews and Keith Olbermann had just finished saying how we know what Obama-the-winner looks like and how his handling of defeat could speak volumes. And so Obama took the stage. I remember being stunned, absorbed, moved to tears, as chills coursed through my body. It was, and I think may forever be, the most transformative speech I’ve ever heard. I declared, “He’s won my vote.” When my partner came home I made him sit and watch the whole thing again with me. The second most exciting moment was another poll-watching night, this time on Nov. 4, as California polls closed and Obama was declared president-elect. We stayed up late watching, giddily infused with patriotism.
Donald Munro: Because 2008 was, for me, just one big blur of an election, I have to pick as my most exciting moment when Hillary Clinton beat Barack Obama in the New Hampshire primary. It was a moment of true political drama.
Kathy Mahan: Michael Phelps winning eight gold medals. That whole week of the Olympics I was sleep deprived watching every Phelps race. I couldn’t tear myself away. And, as you all know, I was obsessed with the body shots. Heather reminded us that he’s not perfect. But, those abs. Sigh!
John Rich, Sports Buzz: The odd time difference between us and Beijing made following the Olympics a pre-morning coffee experience. Watching Usain Bolt reach to a gear that heretofore seemed unimaginable was electric. High Boltage, if you will.
Will Albritton: For me, it’s an easy one: When the Tampa Bay Rays beat the Boston Red Sox to clinch their first World Series berth. I mean, the whole season was exciting, including catching a game in Oakland, them getting their 71st win for the first time, getting their 82nd win for the first time, clinching a playoff berth for the first time, winning the same division in which the Red Sox and the New York Yankees play (for the first time), knocking the Yankees out the playoffs for the first time since the Rays have been in existence, winning their first-ever playoff series against the Chicago White Sox and of course, being there to see their first (and only) victory in a World Series game. Yeah, that was awesome.
Your turn. Tell us your most exciting moment.