Former Gov. Rod Blagojevich walked into the Federal Courthouse Tuesday displaying the linguistic gifts that will be on display when he possibly takes the witness stand in his own defense today.
"Good morning. Something going on today?" Blagojevich shouted to the assembled crowd on the 25th floor.
It was an ironic start to a spectacle that Blagojevich has long promised will clear his name.
The testimony, which could last anywhere from a single day to two weeks, will be cathartic, and not just for the disgraced former governor who has reiterated time and time again that he is innocent and that he just needs a chance to clear his name.
Illinoisians, too, have awaited this testimony with a mixture of awe, approbation, and anger -- should Blagojevich really explain away the corruption charges? On cross-examination will he reveal himself as a silver-tongued crook? Or will the testimony just be more Blagojevich, telling people to listen to more Blagojevich?
Political observers, meanwhile, say Blagojevich's testimony could be anything from a frenetic romp through a deluded mind, to an embarrassing expose of Illinois political secrets (or at least baggage).
This much is for sure: it's the moment Blagojevich, and Illinois, have been waiting for.