The Boys and Girls on the Bus
You have no idea how hard it is to be a campaign correspondent. Or, rather, you would have no idea how hard it is to be a campaign correspondent except that every few weeks from here to November, you'll be reminded of how hard it is to be campaign correspondent by articles like today's from the Dallas Morning News: "For journalists in the campaign bubble, it's a journey of toil, trouble."
Poor campaign correspondents. They "spend their waking hours writing and repackaging every snippet of news for television, radio, Internet and print" on "round-the-clock deadlines." They have to "capture and convey the essence of the candidates" and "satisfy bosses who want exclusives on the evening news" and sometimes go days with no hot water. How do they live? Well, apparently, some of them don't: "Most days, the goal is to survive." We had no idea.
It's all very macho, except if you consider some of the article's other details about life on the campaign trail. It reminds us of something, and it also involves a bus. . . but it's a very short one. . .
• "Wear your name tag."
• "Meals will be provided. You will have no say in when or what you eat."
• "When a bathroom break is offered, take it. You don't know when another will come along."
• "Straying from the group is not an option."
• "We have this rotating sickness. Somebody's always getting sick."
and, of course:
• "Some days, though, it all comes down to clean underwear."
On the other hand, it also sounds a lot like prison, right down to fashioning makeshift knives out of pens.
For journalists in the campaign bubble, it's a journey of toil, trouble [Dallas Morning News]