Joe Biden in Dover: A Man Like the ‘Everything Drawer’

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Susan Dromey Heeter photo

Former Vice President Joe Biden speaks to a group at Castaways in Dover on Friday.

Welcome to Decoding the Vibe where I tell it like it really is as the first-in-the-nation primary parade of candidates comes to New Hampshire. Join me behind the scenes where you might just find out what the candidate is really like. – Susan Dromey Heeter

Joe Biden, 12 July 2019, Castaways, Dover, NH  

The vibe of Joe Biden in Dover on Friday, 12 July at Castaways Restaurant and Lounge felt a lot like the drawer I have in my house we call the “everything drawer.” 

It’s got the half-started rolls of tape, the knee brace, matches, an empty Altoids box, scissors, chargers from flip phones, candles and the emergency flashlight that, of course, will not work in an emergency because the batteries have died.

Biden was gracious, friendly and was accompanied by a plethora of preppy, vibrant young men and women.  

When I talked with people in line, I met Sam Tardiff, a UNH student studying Environmental Studies and Sustainability. His question for Biden was about his nuclear weapons policy. Tardiff wanted to know if Biden supports the “no first strike” policy.  

Lydia Herlihy and Cathy Hammon waited in line after having seen Pete Buttigieg earlier in the day.  Herlihy wanted to ask Biden, “Do you really think it reasonable you’ll be able to work both sides of the aisle?” 

An official question/answer session was not part of Biden’s stump speech; Biden spoke for about an hour and then was quickly ushered out. 

 I felt a bit like when I go to that everything drawer to look for zip ties and am let down – again – because the zip ties are in the garage.  

Biden began his speech with “I am the man who accompanies Jill Biden” and, like finding that user’s manual from the 1983 coffee maker, I recognized the line from JFK’s visit to Paris when he quipped, “I am the man who accompanied Jacqueline Kennedy to Paris, and I have enjoyed it.”  

Biden spoke of Trump’s incorrigible behavior, his repugnant reputation among America’s allies, the dynamic and resilience of the United States of America.  He gave hope to the standing room only crowd, many of whom were there simply curious to find out if Biden can win.  

The crowd itself felt seasoned, mature.  When Biden joked, “Unlike many of you women, you men may remember the 60s,”  I cringed. At 56, I was at the tail end of the sixties and thoroughly enjoy sharing my age.

The everything drawer. Susan Dromey Heeter photo

Again, the vibe of Biden felt like the everything drawer.  Some things just need to be thrown out. I’ll never use that box of mug hooks and that half inch of tape left on the roll. It might come in handy at some point but may as well go for the new.

As always, thanks for Decoding the Vibe with me.  I’m going to go clean out my everything drawer while I have the time – and who knows what I may discover.

Susan Dromey Heeter is a writer from Dover who recently let her hair go au natural white. Writing has been her passion since her English majoring days at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst.  Dromey Heeter has lived in The Netherlands, Alaska and currently basks in all things New England, including the frigid winters. An avid swimmer, Dromey Heeter’s great passion is to bring back body surfing as most children have no idea how to ride waves without ridiculous boogie boards.

The opinions expressed are those of the writer. takes no position on politics, but welcomes diverse opinions. email

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