Yes, I will soon join the grumbling herd of journalists trudging off to cover the Republicans in Cleveland and then the Democrats in Philadelphia. And trust me, both of these circuses come with critters you’d rather avoid.

The most common is the fierce Partisanisaurus. Known for a one-sided attacking style, this creature turns a blind eye to every flaw in its own party, while simultaneously seeing nothing but evil among – well, anyone who does not agree with it. Always bolder in packs, when enough of them get together they have a frightening affection for tacky clothing, ridiculous hats and evolving into full-fledged Wingnuts. Caution: In either form, this creature can be pelted with Poke-logic all day and will never admit being cornered, let alone captured.  

Another convention congregant: The ZeroSumOne. This political animal knows his/her candidate is a mess – mistrusted by the public and disliked by even some allies. But at least his/her nominee is not “that other one!” Fair enough. After all, why go through all the fuss of finding a really good candidate when you can just demonize the opposition?

Bernievees and TrumpDumpers will also be hanging around the bars, growling and snapping. They may prove hard to snare for the nominees, but don’t worry about them doing any real damage. It’s now pretty clear they have no teeth.

The Protestonizers will bear watching, if only because they often harbor MediaMaulers who just love chomping into unsuspecting journalists – especially when the journos foolishly point out not everyone in the country agrees with the Partisanisaurs.

Frankly, I wouldn’t be surprised to see a few ItCoulddaBeenMes in the hotel lobbies, whining about how great they would have been as president and why they decided to run for Senate again after all. 

Dealing with all these characters can be tiring, but when you’re a reporter at a convention: You gotta catch ‘em all. Still, if you see me slipping away for some fresh air now and then, please don’t raise a fuss – like Pikachu, I’m hiding.