Donny's Ramblings


My Thoughts on the Debate

I’m sitting in Starbucks in downtown Chico listening to a live version of Damien Rice singing The Blower’s Daughter. I love that song. I wanted to purchase Damien’s version of it several months ago, but iTunes didn’t have it available at the time. A few days ago I checked again, and the live version was for sale. YES! It’s actually quite good live. A video of Damien singing the song is available on YouTube here, free of charge.

I mention that song because it has a subduing power over me. When I listen to it, I’m taken to a place of sadness. I am pretty sure that’s because I first heard the song on the movie Closer, which was one of the most heart wrenching human drama stories I’ve ever seen… a story of love and loss, and humans being hurtful to each other. I watched that movie once, in 2004 when it came out, yet it still sticks with me.

Why would I want to take myself to that state of mind, you ask? I don’t know if I can really explain the answer to that question, but I will tell you this: yesterday morning, the morning after the debate, I woke up in a mood very similar to the one The Blower’s Daughter takes me to: sadness… a sense of loss… a feeling of love that almost seems useless to have.

Don’t get me wrong, the debate was a blast. The experience was one I will remember for the rest of my life. But I was also reminded of the slave I used to be as I spoke with two people still in that same bondage: Ron Jeremy and Monique Alexander.

Ron… I can’t help but love that guy to pieces. There is just something about him in person that just makes you want to squeeze him like a Teddy Bear. He can be a bit vulgar at times, and still I can’t help wanting to put my arm around his shoulder. Monique Alexander is a beautiful 25 year old porn star that has been in the business for 7 years. She, too, is very likable. My heart breaks for both of them because I know what it feels like to be in their shoes when the lights go off and the crowds go away.

I don’t want to go too deep, because I think you’ll do better to wait until the debate airs and experience for yourself what I’m talking about. But I do want to warn you: DO NOT, DO NOT, DO NOT watch it with children. I’m sure Nightline will bleep out certain words, but very frank porn terms will no doubt make their way into the finished product. Porn realities were discussed with no holds barred. Some adults may even want to consider whether or not they REALLY want to know what they’ll hear from that debate. Personally, I think the story needs to be heard, but if I tell you all this you can’t come to me later and say I didn’t warn you.

I prayed before the debate that God would guide what I said and let His words be heard. I prayed the same for Craig Gross as well. I sure hope that’s what happened.

The debate airs this coming Thursday night (February 21st) at 11:35 pm on Nightline ABC. The time should be the same no matter where you live. An hour and a half of discussion will be edited to about 20 minutes, but I’m told the Nightline ABC website will have the full debate beginning on Wednesday and concluding Thursday.

It will be a… learning experience… should you choose to watch.

Click here for photos of the Yale University Campus


A Very Brief Update

Last night’s debate went great! I’ll tell you all more about it later. Last night I didn’t get back to my room until after 1am and was too tired to write. This morning I’ve gotta back and head back to New York City to catch my flight home. Here are the 4 “Great Debators” along with Martin Bashir from Nightline ABC, who was our moderator. That’ll have to hold ya over until I can tell ya more about it.

Monique Alexander, Ron Jeremy, Martin Bashir, Craig Gross, Donny Pauling

I’ve got a lot of photos to share, both of the debate and of Yale University. The campus is breathtakingly beautiful!

Ron Jeremy, Monique Alexander, Martin Bashir, Donny Pauling, Craig Gross

Caught with my eyes closed and a good dose of “double chin”, here we are on stage during the debate itself. The camera crew was changing tapes, and we had to pause discussion for a moment.

Until later,