Friday, October 24, 2008

Absentee All the Way

It’s done.  I have voted in the 2008 election.  I filled out my little absentee ballot, put it in the interior envelope, sealed it, put that envelope in another official looking envelope, sealed that one, signed and dated the envelope, walked it to the mail box, put up the little red flag, and said goodbye.  Deep.  Breath.

I have to say, it’s kind of weird voting absentee.  Election day is a little under two weeks away, yet I felt a sense of urgency to vote NOW, because MY ballot must be received “no later than 5pm on the Friday before election day.”  What kind of baloney is that?  Just because I am off somewhere unable to vote in my hometown and therefore likely doing some activity that would hinder me from having time to become informed of the candidates’ stances (as if anyone could avoid the 24-hour streaming coverage of this election. I am just waiting to read an article about their nose hairs or something- the media is reaaally stretching themselves thin on even remotely newsworthy topics.), why should I be punished?  Now I have to wait for two weeks to see the results.  What if something happens between now and then, like say, we find out that McCain is in fact a Manchurian candidate or that Obama is in fact the antichrist*?? I CAN’T CHANGE MY MIND!  But this is a fact with which I will have to live. 

Furthermore, I’m pretty much paranoid that my ballot will disappear in the mail system or go “missing” if the person who is tallying my vote doesn’t like my vote.  Or maybe the machine (if it’s a machine and not a person) will break down and vote for the other dude.  And then I would be sad panda.  But I will never know, will I?  So what’s the sense of worrying?  I must assume that because I have cast my vote, it will be counted.  Properly.  Why does it seem so much less reliable when done via absentee ballot?  I don’t know.  But what I do know is that as much as I poured over articles, books, debates, and all manner of conversations with people about the Presidential election, I know less than diddlysquat about the nearly 10 other elections that were on that ballot.  Local and state elections of such varied nature that I didn’t even know we citizens got to vote on these things.  I feel like such a hypocrite, because I’ve been all, “MAKE INFORMED DECISIONS!” and “HAVE A REASON FOR WHETHER YOU VOTE AND HOW YOU VOTE!” to everyone within earshot for months like a broken record, and there I went and filled in bubbles with absolutely no information about the candidates.  And would you like to know why I did so?  Because I didn’t know if they would count my vote for President if I didn’t cast a vote for the other offices.  This may be totally illogical, but NO WHERE on the ballot did I see any rule or note about not voting for one of the offices.  There were detailed instructions- very detailed instructions- but nowhere did it address not voting for one of the races.  Perhaps because it’s assumed YOU VOTE FOR EVERY OFFICE LIKE A GOOD CITIZEN, IDIOT.  So I must apologize for my hypocrisy, here before the whole world. 

You may want to know for whom I voted.  You may also think I am going to tell you.  You would be wrong.  I’ll keep that little tidbit to myself, perhaps sharing with those who ask.  I have nothing to hide, but I do not feel this to be the proper venue.  Interestingly, I have never told a soul who I voted for in 2004, though much speculation from friends on both sides of the aisle has gone into trying to figure it out.  But alas, the world may never know.  Kind of like how the world may never know the number of licks it takes to get to the tootsie roll center of a tootsie roll pop.  Oh the mystery.


*Point of note- I do not in fact think that Obama is the antichrist.  And I think that people who do probably also think you can’t be a Christian and vote for a democrat.  McCain however, I can’t be too sure about… If you just got all huffy and offended, please, take a chill pill and know I’m just pushing your buttons.  Apparently very successfully.  Gotta love footnotes.  Are footnotes even allowed in blogs?


West Coast Natasha said...

WELL...I can sympathize with your paranoia about whether your ballot will make it in the mail and be counted. Be thankful that your absentee ballot came at all! I sent mine in weeks ago and it still hasn't come. The good news is that I bought a ticket to Philly for homecoming on Sunday and I am staying through Tuesday and don't actually need my absentee ballot anymore. But what if I didn't happen to come home! I have a friend out here who hasn't received his either...scary. Way to be on top of it.

West Coast Natasha said...

FYI my ballot did come in the mail on Saturday...