Cognoscenti Cognoscenti

Support the news

Your Stories: Where Were You When Joe Biden Was Declared The President-Elect?

Tristan Homewood waves a Biden campaign flag as he stands on a street lamp on the corner of Boylston and Charles Streets to celebrate Joe Biden’s presidential victory. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)
Tristan Homewood waves a Biden campaign flag as he stands on a street lamp on the corner of Boylston and Charles Streets to celebrate Joe Biden’s presidential victory. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

You may know that Cognoscenti sends a weekly newsletter, delivered Sunday mornings. This week, we asked people to tell us where they were when the presidential race was finally called for Joe Biden.

Your editors had been glued to our televisions, radios and computers for days. But, Murphy's Law: the moment we stepped away, the Associated Press declared a winner. Cloe was on a run (U2 blaring in her earbuds). Kathleen was gardening. And Frannie was unearthing Christmas decorations in her basement (yes, she knows Halloween was last week — don't judge, it's been a year).

We think it’s safe to say that we'll all remember this election season for a long time to come. And Cog wasn't the only media outlet collecting people's where-were-you-when responses. Below, you'll see some of our favorites, including several from our own readers and contributors.

If you'd like to tell us what you were up to, send us an email at opinion@wbur.org or find us on Twitter at @cogwbur.

Claudia d’Allesandro (@pugworth): Finishing the last batch of applesauce for 2020. It is particularly and naturally sweet and rosy

Laurie Goldman (@LAURIEG77587323): I was about to head downstairs when I heard a Newsflash break in from WBUR in the bathroom and I grabbed my wife and we listened and hugged!

Meagan McGinnes, WBUR's newsletter editor (@meaganmcginnes): I just wrapped up a Crossfit class and got the text as I was catching my breath. didn't realize I would be finishing the wod with a 200m sprint to my car to get my laptop I sent WBUR's breaking email alert from the gym!

Marie Scarfo, via email: My two housemates and I were sitting in the living room, the very picture of unshowered Saturday morning slobbery. We all slept like crap all week. Couldn't focus at work. Stayed up way too late doomscrolling. We were about to tuck into a terrible Netflix Christmas romcom (our fourth one of the week — hey, it's self care). We all had our phones out and were scrolling through Instagram; one of us remarked, "I keep telling myself that maybe - just maybe - if I keep scrolling, they'll eventually announce something." Welp, five minutes into only half-watching "Operation Christmas Drop," they announced something. We tuned into CNN just in time to see Van Jones tearfully declare, "Character matters." Saturday night was the best night's sleep I've had in 8 months.

Annie Hartnett, via email: My story is a little sad but my partner and I had actually scheduled a vet to come to our apartment in Brookline Saturday morning to put down our dog who had cancer and was quite old. We said our goodbyes and spent the morning crying, and about 30 minutes later we heard the news. We are huge liberals/leftists/democrats so the day was surreal after that. We broke out champagne and listened to everyone cheering in the streets, it was a much-needed break from the sadness in our apartment. The news really helped us grieve that day and feel better because we had a lot of hope for what’s to come.

Liz Quinn (@LizQuinnMD): At the playground with my toddler and my parents! We broke the news to the neighbors and the people in the park as we ran home to tell my husband and drink champagne on the porch.

Julia Brennan was paddling on the Mattawoman Creek when she heard the news about the presidential race on November 7, 2020. (Courtesy)
Julia Brennan was paddling on the Mattawoman Creek when she heard the news about the presidential race on November 7, 2020. (Courtesy)

Julia Brennan, via email: We were paddling.  Out on the Mattawoman Creek south of Washington D.C., a favorite fall spot to see flocks of migrating ducks, geese and swan. We always tuck our phones deep into waterproof bags and paddle away from all outside intrusions. But we all kept hearing the dings and rings. We pulled into a shady spot, and to our astonishment joy relief we read that Biden has won president 46! Hallelujah! And we paddled on — enjoying an exuberant day with Mother Nature and the universe — our oars lighter than ever.

@Ghostalservice: Working at the post office helping customers, and we all started getting frantic texts from friends and family. We all had to hold it together for three hours, because any celebration would violate the Hatch Act! But there sure was yelling as soon as we punched off the clock.

@WilliamLRise: Had gone to NH for a sanity break and morning hike. Started my descent and made the "mistake" of interrupting my nature fix with checking my phone. Saw a text from my wife: "Woo-hoo!" Checked further and saw texts btw wife, daughter, sister celebrating the Biden-Harris victory.

Follow Cognoscenti on Facebook and Twitter.

Related:

Support the news