Clinton inaugurated President
Randy Lilleston // That was the crowning surreal moment in a long 15 months of surreal moments for me. I covered Clinton's night (and most of his presidential campaign) for the Dem-Gazette and was there at the Old State House, watching the crowds, listening to the live television reports, grabbing quotes, etc., etc.

But here's the weird part for me: Clinton, as always, ran hopelessly late and by the time he spoke, *I was back at the media filing center* watching it on TV. I had to: The Dem-Gaz presses were being held and every half-hour or so of Clinton's procrastination was costing the paper thousands and thousands of dollars. In those pre-wireless, pre-Web days, you had to be plugged into a phone line to file a story...so I hunched over a computer keyboard in a hotel ballroom, hammered in a couple of Clinton's quotes and pushed the button to get the story to the paper.

Another weird thing for me that night was that I was still recovering from the appendectomy I'd had one week earlier...after spending all of that time on the road, I missed the entire last week of the campaign while I recovered. Noel Oman, who liked campaign travel ... (More)
Dan Bailey // Joy -- how neat. The entire Clinton ascendancy was, of course, utterly surreal for so many of us, given the 1-degree-of-separation principle that seems to prevail back home (I'm exiled in Montgomery, Alabama, these days, sad to say). Hell, my first wife is city manager of Hope (looking back, she never *did* really buy into my anarchopunk tendencies), his hometown.

Not to mention the fact that Maya Angelou grew up in my hometown, Stamps (which I'm proud to say still doesn't have a single traffic light) -- her first book, "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings," is largely set there.
Joy Ritchey // Thanks, Dan. I didn't catch the error, but I was lucky enough to be at the inauguration. Several of us were taking a road trip with the guys from Sleeping Body, who'd just played at here at the river and then stayed a few days at the girl house. They lived with the guys from Nation of Ulysses, so we stayed with them a few days in Annapolis, which was great. Later NoU came and played at the Belvedere.

Actually, we were just caravanning and taking Sleeping Body home on our way to Northampton just for fun to take Catherine McCrae back to Smith, where she was in college.

It was Sleeping Body in their van, Catherine and I in her car, and Alice and John Teague in another car. It was the first time I ever ate a Krispy Kreme donut, right before we all had an argument about getting a cheap hotel room or driving through the night. I think we split up and then found each other the next day.

We realized we could and should go to the inauguration. The homeless had not been cleared from the streets, which is unusual for that particular ceremony, and ... (More)
Dan Bailey // A correction: What the people on this page are remembering at the Old State House is *election* night outside the Old State House in '92, not inauguration night in 1/93 ... The latter, of course, was held in DC, not Little Rock.

At any rate, there actually was a slight punk element in the election-night revelries amongst the Clinton people, in that the folksinger Michelle Shocked performed. In the early '80s she'd been part of the punk squatter scene in San Francisco, living in the infamous "vats" among members of MDC (who in '88 appeared on her 2nd LP, Short Sharp Shocked, backing her on a version of her song Fogtown). In '84 she was part of the "Rock Against Reagan" tour, opening for the likes of Reagan Youth, BGK, Cause for Alarm & the Dead Kennedys. She returned to LR in early '97 or so, putting on a great show at Juanita's.
Joy Ritchey // Jim Thompson took a group of us to Kinkos and made fake press passes so we could get close. I think we were maybe 20 or 30 feet away from the stage at the Old State House when he declared victory. It was awesome.

Then half my friends left town to work for the administration, which was great for them, but stunk for me.

The day before I saw James Carville jogging outside what is now the Peabody hotel. He actually stopped and talked and was great. I think he's a little whacked out now, but I loved him then. Guess I still kind of do.
Kevin Kerby // Yes, I did hit on Allison Stewart. But not really. I just asked her if she wanted to go and get a drink. It was more to make my wife and Clay Bell (Techno Squid Eats Parlament) laugh. She said she had to work. I'm sure that was the ONLY thing keeping her from going to get a drink with me. We also yelled "Tabitha!" until that red-headed VJ leaned over the edge of a building and waved at us. We knew she was up there because we could see her firey locks blowing in the wind.
Cory Walker // It really blew my mind that the governor of our obscure state became President. I couldn't believe that this guy I'd seen around town, chomping on enchiladas with Hillary at El Chico and whatnot, had become the leader of the most powerful country on the planet. For me it was a lesson that anything is possible.
Richard Matson // I was living abroad when Clinton was elected. But I've heard so many stories about the inauguration night on the lawn of the Old State House. As a state, this was probably the biggest moment in history. Thousands of people lining the streets, Fleetwood Mac blaring all over the place. I think it's Kevin Kerby that has a story about hitting on one of the MTV VJs covering the event. Someone help me out.
Suggest a New Event

Email Us Your Story
Trouble submitting your story? E-mail towncraft@matsonfilms.com
Matson Films reserves the right to edit all responses. Please be courteous to your community.