CPAC 2018 / Don’t give a VUK Meet the Voter the Media Narrative says Does Exist

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CPAC 2018 / Don't give a VUK Meet the Voter the Media Narrative says Does Exist

Yes­ter­day I high­lighted my short walk­ing inter­view with Sen­a­tor Ted Cruz before his speech, today as I wake up just before 9 AM after a very good 1:30 AM break­fast at Bob and Edith’s Diner in Arling­ton VA I want to tell you a story about what, in my opin­ion is the most telling and impor­tant inter­view I have done so far in the 60 videos I’ve shot since hit­ting CPAC.

This CPAC my sons are here as assis­tants and have, unlike me, taken advan­tage of the time to explore DC. Wednes­day the younger sug­gested a meal at a local place called VUK a com­bi­na­tion pizza place and pin­ball arcade in Bethesda.

[cap­tion id=“attachment_105448” align=“alignleft” width=“250”] Machines at VUK[/caption]

I’ve cov­ered Pin­ball events and will be doing a big one in MA in about 4 months so it was a good fit but I filed it in the back of my mind too busy doing what I do here to con­sider it. Thurs­day I was with Deb Heine (PJ Media, more from here later) when John Hawkins and Sierra Marly swung by men­tion­ing a road trip to a Brazil­ian
restau­rant with a group. The boys were still on the road and I gave them a call when they reminded me of our planned din­ner at VUK which I had com­pletely forgotten.

So, with some regret I declined and when my young men pulled up I joined them in the car and as my old­est had been dri­ving a bit, took the wheel to head for Bethesda. After about an hour in traf­fic we arrived.

If you are a pin­ball per­son let me highly rec­om­mend VUK as a place to go. It is right across from a local multi story garage so park­ing isn’t an issue. The Pizza is NY style, sold by the slice from 1820″ pies that are avail­able. They are not only deli­cious but priced very reasonably,(particularly when com­pared to the restau­rants at National Har­bor). The machine selec­tion was excel­lent includ­ing clas­sics like Crea­ture From the Black Lagoon and two Jer­sey Jack machines, the Hob­bit and Dialed IN and all the games are only 50 cents.

[cap­tion id=“attachment_105449” align=“alignright” width=“250”] The Hob­bit and Crea­ture from the black Lagoon at VUK[/caption]

The drink selec­tion is lim­ited to bot­tled beers, hon­est teas and some craft sodas, but again they are offered at rea­son­able prices and com­ple­ment the expe­ri­ence. There is seat­ing for just under 30 but they also have a func­tion room upstairs which I think might make an inter­est­ing CPAC event (Media vs the blog­gers pin­ball next year?). If you want to kick back with some Pizza, Pin­ball and beer, VUK (which stands for Ver­ti­cal Up Kicker for those who are unfa­mil­iar with pin­ball) is the place to do it.

Within a few min­utes of hit­ting the machines I real­ized what a good idea this had been. All of the ten­sion of being on the go and con­stant work dis­ap­peared after a just a few min­utes of play­ing the sil­ver ball, but the real game changer of the night came com­pletely by accident.

[cap­tion id=“attachment_105450” align=“alignleft” width=“250”] Still got the touch[/caption]

When my sons picked me up I was still in my suit, wear­ing my press cre­den­tial with one cam­era around my neck and a sec­ond on my mono­pod. It was that along with my grey beard, rather than my fedora and scarf, that made me stand out like a sore thumb and peaked the inter­est of a party of five sit­ting the win­dow two tables away who asked who I was. I explained I was down to cover CPAC, talked about my pre­vi­ous pin­ball cov­er­age and struck up a con­ver­sa­tion with these rather pleas­ant folks.

It stuck me at the time it would be a good story to con­trast their answers to the ques­tions I’ve been ask­ing every­one at CPAC so I asked if any of them would con­sent to an inter­view. Of the five one agreed. Meet Lea

She is right about the qual­ity of both the pizza and the pin­ball (and I played that total nuclear anni­hi­la­tion machine she talked about. I’d not seen it before, it’s a unique lay­out and a fun game) and if you do essen­tial oils I’d give her online busi­ness a look but the real story of the night was her answers to my CPAC ques­tions that I’ve been ask­ing every­one here.

Now a per­son like my self who has cov­ered angry mobs last year, and is con­stantly bathed in the polit­i­cal fight, not to men­tion the media nar­ra­tive of absolute Trump /​GOP hatred and con­stantly in the com­pany of activists both at home and at CPAC, might expect a Demo­c­rat woman of color liv­ing in a blue state to give answers fit­ting the us vs them nar­ra­tive, par­tic­u­larly if filmed and in the pres­ence of her friends.

She did not.

She gave the Pres­i­dent mixed marks, com­ple­mented him on keep­ing cam­paign promises that he made to his peo­ple, noted that as a Demo­c­rat she’d like to see some more mod­er­ate moves. Her answers had none of the ran­cor or the divi­sion that the media has pushed on us for the year or that I’ve seen from angry activists. They were com­pletely rea­son­able answers that would not have been out of place sev­eral decades ago in a saner time when I remem­bered peo­ple could dis­agree and get along. In other words they reflected who she is, a nor­mal Amer­i­can try­ing to get by whose pri­mary focus is real life instead of man­u­fac­tured outrage.

This told me two things that are vital to under­stand­ing elec­tion 2018 and 2020.

Despite what our media friends are try­ing to sell us, Reg­u­lar Democ­rats, even democ­rats in a blue place like Mary­land are not wed­ded to the Peloxi/​CNN/​MSNBC line and are see­ing this pres­i­dent for what he is rather than what they are being told he is.

Peo­ple like Lea are winnable and the media nar­ra­tive is all about con­vinc­ing us she is not.

Now you might think I’m mak­ing too much of this one inter­view, but remem­ber, she is a young per­son, with young friends (I would place the age range of the group from low to mid 20’s to one out­lier in the mid 30’s) liv­ing in an Twitter/​facebook , inter­net social media age. Fur­ther­more the MSM has been telling me that a young woman of color like her has noth­ing but dis­dain for con­ser­v­a­tives in gen­eral and Don­ald Trump in particular.

If you believe them she shouldn’t exist but there she is and if there is one Lea in a county of 300+ mil­lion there are likely hun­dreds of thou­sands of oth­ers out there not wed­ded to the MSM nar­ra­tive of doom and gloom.

It’s a story that isn’t being found, but it can be, all you have to do is go out­side the media bub­ble and see what is there, if one is will­ing to look.


DaT­e­chGuy at CPAC 2018 The story so far:

Sat­ur­day Feb 24th

CPAC 2018 /​Don’t give a VUK Meet the Voter the Media Nar­ra­tive says Does Exist

Fri­day Feb 23rd

Voices at CPAC 2018 Sen­a­tor Ted Cruz Answers Two Ques­tion for DaTechGuy

Thurs Feb 22nd

We Inter­rupt CPAC 2018 for CNN and their Gun Con­trol Galaxy Quest Moment
Voices of CPAC 2018: Ron from PA

Wed Feb. 21st

Voices at CPAC 2018 Vicki from Minnesota

Voices at (or near) #cpac2018 Lea from National Asso­ci­a­tion of Devel­op­men­tal Edu­ca­tors We talk Stu­dents and Math

DaT­e­chGuy at CPAC 2018 The Calm Before the Storm and What I’ll be Asking

If you don’t want to wait or my blog posts to see my inter­views my youtube chan­nel is here.

Full CPAC 2017 list (for those who feel nos­tal­gic) is here

A reminder I have copies of my Book Hail Mary the per­fect Protes­tant (and Catholic) Prayer avail­able at CPAC with me, price $7 and I will hap­pily sign them for you.

Or you can just order it on Amazon


If you’d like to con­tinue to sup­port inde­pen­dent jour­nal­ism, help defray the $140 a month extra I’ll need for my new host­ing site) and think my CPAC 2018 report­ing is worth­while please con­sider hit­ting DaTip­Jar here.



Con­sider sub­scrib­ing. 7 more sub­scribers at $20 a month will pay the monthly price for the new host/​server.


Choose a Sub­scrip­tion level


Finally might I sug­gest my book Hail Mary the Per­fect Protes­tant (and Catholic) Prayer makes an excel­lent Gift.

Yesterday I highlighted my short walking interview with Senator Ted Cruz before his speech, today as I wake up just before 9 AM after a very good 1:30 AM breakfast at Bob and Edith’s Diner in Arlington VA I want to tell you a story about what, in my opinion is the most telling and important interview I have done so far in the 60 videos I’ve shot since hitting CPAC.

This CPAC my sons are here as assistants and have, unlike me, taken advantage of the time to explore DC.  Wednesday the younger suggested a meal at a local place called VUK a combination pizza place and pinball arcade in Bethesda.

Machines at VUK

I’ve covered Pinball events and will be doing a big one in MA in about 4 months so it was a good fit but I filed it in the back of my mind too busy doing what I do here to consider it.  Thursday I was with Deb Heine (PJ Media, more from here later)  when John Hawkins and Sierra Marly swung by mentioning a road trip to a Brazilian
restaurant with a group.  The boys were still on the road and I gave them a call when they reminded me of our planned dinner at VUK which I had completely forgotten.

So, with some regret I declined and when my young men pulled up I joined them in the car and as my oldest had been driving a bit, took the wheel to head for Bethesda.  After about an hour in traffic we arrived.

If you are a pinball person let me highly recommend VUK as a place to go.  It is right across from a local multi story garage so parking isn’t an issue.  The Pizza is NY style, sold by the slice from 18-20″ pies that are available.  They are not only delicious but priced very reasonably,(particularly when compared to the restaurants at National Harbor).   The machine selection was excellent including classics like Creature From the Black Lagoon and two Jersey Jack machines, the Hobbit and Dialed IN and all the games are only 50 cents.

The Hobbit and Creature from the black Lagoon at VUK

The drink selection is limited to bottled beers, honest teas and some craft sodas, but again they are offered at reasonable prices and complement the experience.  There is seating for just under 30 but they also have a function room upstairs which I think might make an interesting CPAC event (Media vs the bloggers pinball next year?).  If you want to kick back with some Pizza, Pinball and beer, VUK (which stands for Vertical Up Kicker for those who are unfamiliar with pinball)  is the place to do it.

Within a few minutes of hitting the machines I realized what a good idea this had been.  All of the tension of being on the go and constant work disappeared after a just a few minutes of playing the silver ball, but the real game changer of the night came completely by accident.

Still got the touch

When my sons picked me up I was still in my suit, wearing my press credential with one camera around my neck and a second on my monopod.  It was that along with my grey beard,  rather than my fedora and scarf,  that made me stand out like a sore thumb and peaked the interest of a party of five sitting the window two tables away who asked who I was.  I explained I was down to cover CPAC, talked about my previous pinball coverage and struck up a conversation with these rather pleasant folks.

It stuck me at the time it would be a good story to contrast their answers to the questions I’ve been asking everyone at CPAC so I asked if any of them would consent to an interview.  Of the five one agreed.  Meet Lea

She is right about the quality of both the pizza and the pinball (and I played that total nuclear annihilation machine she talked about. I’d not seen it before, it’s a unique layout and a fun game) and if you do essential oils I’d give her online business a look but the real story of the night was her answers to my CPAC questions that I’ve been asking everyone here.

Now a person like my self who has covered angry mobs last year, and is constantly bathed in the political fight, not to mention the media narrative of absolute Trump / GOP hatred and constantly in the company of activists both at home and at CPAC,  might expect a Democrat woman of color living in a blue state to give answers fitting the us vs them narrative, particularly if filmed and in the presence of her friends.

She did not.

She gave the President mixed marks, complemented him on keeping campaign promises that he made to his people, noted that as a Democrat she’d like to see some more moderate moves. Her answers had none of the rancor or the division that the media has pushed on us for the year or that I’ve seen from angry activists. They were completely reasonable answers that would not have been out of place several decades ago in a saner time when I remembered people could disagree and get along. In other words they reflected who she is, a normal American trying to get by whose primary focus is real life instead of manufactured outrage.

This told me two things that are vital to understanding election 2018 and 2020.

Despite what our media friends are trying to sell us, Regular Democrats, even democrats in a blue place like Maryland are not wedded to the Peloxi/CNN/MSNBC line and are seeing this president for what he is rather than what they are being told he is.

People like Lea are winnable and the media narrative is all about convincing us she is not.

Now you might think I’m making too much of this one interview, but remember, she is a young person, with young friends (I would place the age range of the group from low to mid 20’s to one outlier in the mid 30’s) living in an Twitter/facebook , internet social media age. Furthermore the MSM has been telling me that a young woman of color like her has nothing but disdain for conservatives in general and Donald Trump in particular.

If you believe them she shouldn’t exist but there she is and if there is one Lea in a county of 300+ million there are likely hundreds of thousands of others out there not wedded to the MSM narrative of doom and gloom.

It’s a story that isn’t being found, but it can be, all you have to do is go outside the media bubble and see what is there, if one is willing to look.


DaTechGuy at CPAC 2018 The story so far:

Saturday Feb 24th

CPAC 2018 / Don’t give a VUK Meet the Voter the Media Narrative says Does Exist

Friday Feb 23rd

Voices at CPAC 2018 Senator Ted Cruz Answers Two Question for DaTechGuy

Thurs Feb 22nd

We Interrupt CPAC 2018 for CNN and their Gun Control Galaxy Quest Moment
Voices of CPAC 2018: Ron from PA

Wed Feb. 21st

Voices at CPAC 2018 Vicki from Minnesota

Voices at (or near) #cpac2018 Lea from National Association of Developmental Educators We talk Students and Math

DaTechGuy at CPAC 2018 The Calm Before the Storm and What I’ll be Asking

If you don’t want to wait or my blog posts to see my interviews my youtube channel is here.

Full CPAC 2017 list (for those who feel nostalgic) is here

A reminder I have copies of my Book Hail Mary the perfect Protestant (and Catholic) Prayer available at CPAC with me, price $7 and I will happily sign them for you.

Or you can just order it on Amazon


If you’d like to continue to support independent journalism, help defray the $140 a month extra I’ll need for my new hosting site) and think my CPAC 2018 reporting is worthwhile please consider hitting DaTipJar here.



Consider subscribing. 7 more subscribers at $20 a month will pay the monthly price for the new host/server.


Choose a Subscription level


Finally might I suggest my book Hail Mary the Perfect Protestant (and Catholic) Prayer makes an excellent Gift.