Tuesday, November 07, 2006

zen and the art of voting in massachusetts

so, i arrived back in the commonwealth this morning on a flight that was about 30 minutes early. bonus. then i was all bold and got on the t with a suitcase...during morning rush hour. i had to stand on the blue line, but there was a riverside green line train empty and waiting for me when i got to government center. i scored a single seat with plenty of room to store my green atlantic rolley bag. bonus number two. ang picked me up at waban so i could retrieve ye olde civic, which was not broken into (there have been some car break-ins recently in that wealthy neighborhood). bonus number three. we chilled with baby johnny for a while and then i drove home. i decided sleep was more important than eating so i napped and laid around until about 3pm. then came the inner debate. to vote or not to vote.

i debated this for about 4 hours, whence i discovered the turnout was higher than expected. this didn't bode well for my candidates/issues, so i made my way to the polling place the governmental website said was mine. it seemed kinda far away, but massachusetts is weird, so i went with it. i entered the hub of quincy old folk life--the senior center on southern artery--at about 7:20, expecting to connect my arrows with a magic marker and make my exit quickly. unfortunately, it was not that easy. i was in the wrong place. after having to say "willow street" about 5 times (not exaggerating) to the old ladies at the check-in table, they said i had to go somewhere else. they weren't quick to say where that somewhere else was. eventually, someone looked up the cryptic numbering of wards and precincts, and i was on my way to a school closer to my house. i entered, waited again, repeated "williow street" to the old ladies 3 times, and was AGAIN told i was in the wrong place. they said i needed to go to some elementary school even closer to my house. this had to be the right place. by this time it was about 7:45 and i was beginning to feel disenfranchised--the girl who wasn't even going to vote an hour before was screaming in her head about her democratic right to piss on the local majority party. i finally got to the school and said "willow street" 2 times to the old ladies, said 146 once, and my name once. (they never ID'd me and i had a clear view of the register...talk about easy to defraud this election!) AND THEY GAVE ME A BALLOT! yea! i trotted over to the mini jeopardy-partitioned desk and connected my arrows with the black magic marker. boo on you ted kennedy (neither he nor the republican even campaigned for this seat--i didn't know he was up for reelection until i checked the online ballot). boo on you deval "i defend malicious rapists and write to them in prison but i'm a hot black man" patrick. yea for wine in grocery stores (the liquor store lobby was the one against this proposition...hmmm...). i think the only one i might win on is the last. i'm sure i'll pay more in taxes the next few years and illegal aliens will have voting rights and driver licenses, but at least i get the wine at the grocery store--maybe i'll be able to afford it.

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