I first took interest in a US election campaign when Hubert Humphrey took on Richard Nixon. That was 1968 when I was nine. I was interested in that election because of the shape of Hubert Humphrey's head (left). He looked a bit like a funny cartoon charcter.
I have particularly watched in great frustration as Gore, then Kerry, failed to "win" the Presidency (the former case being highly debatable, of course).
One thing I have noticed, because it has frustrated me greatly, is that once the TV debates are started or over in October, very little changes. Indeed, studies have shown that the debates only shift things by a point or more.
So McCain, it would seem, is either at "drinking up time" at Last Chance Saloon or, indeed, he is at the stage of "haven't you got any home to go to?"...."my wife doesn't understand me"....that sort of stage.
So the question is: Is it time for the Obama family to start choosing the colour of the drapes in the White House?
Of course not. They'll be blue anyway, I suspect.
Too much effort and energy has gone into the campaign to have a breather now.
But with Obama showing leads in the polls in states like Virginia and North Carolina, it is very difficult to see what McCain can do to shift the momentum, besides detonating a dirty nuclear bomb in Starbucks in Des Moines, Iowa and blaming the Iranians.
Last night's debate was described as a "wipe out" by Andrew Sullivan - i.e McCain got wiped out. The snap polls showed a clear win for Obama from undecided voters and the CNN Ohio uncommitted voters live graph was off the scale with positives for Obama and down in the dumps of negatives every time McCain spoke. Summary: they like Obama and they don't like McCain.