'I never thought it would come'

Tomorrow's news today -- the top of my story for tomorrow's paper:

UPDATE: Here's a link to the full story -- a rare treat in that you can bash me in the comments there as well as here.

The world changed in 28 seconds yesterday.

The epicenter of that change was atop the steps of the West Front of the U.S. Capitol, where Barack Obama took the oath of office as America’s 44th president yesterday — becoming the first black man to lead a a 232-year-old nation with racial unrest embedded in its very DNA.

But the raw force of the moment seemed to send tremors across Washington’s National Mall as American flags rippled like red, white and blue waves of grain amid more than 1.5 million citizens in a once-in-a-lifetime emotional civic outpouring.

And the aftershocks were felt around the world — from African villages where goats were slaughtered in honor of the 47-year-old son of a Kenyan immigrant, to isolated outposts across South America where workers were given time off to watch a historic moment thousands of miles away.

While yesterday may have been a moment in time for Obama and his family to finally move into the White House after a hard-fought election victory and eight contentious years of George W. Bush, it really was a day for the everyday people — of a nation, and a planet.

It was a day for folks like 77-year-old Ted Roberts, who watched police take down civil rights marchers with fire hoses in his native Birmingham, Ala., in 1963 but yesterday was handing out American flags to a large celebratory throng gathering at that city’s Boutwell Auditorium.

"I never thought it would come," he said of the day’s events.

It's long. so I'll post the rest tomorrow -- and then it's back to Cher quotations, ill-informed bashing of MVP-caliber athletes, seemingly endless posts about torture and rants about how conservative President Obama turned out to be.