Tuesday, November 07, 2006

A Public Hearing

When I carried The Boss into the voting booth today and closed the curtain behind me, I was terrified that she would pull the red lever and finish out my session before I had even made it through the eleven different charter revisions, let alone weighed in the world famous Lieberman/Lamont question.

Luckily for me, she was too busy playing Peek-A-Bo over my shoulder by sticking her head through the curtain and ogling the gray haired poll workers situated in front of the booth. At first. My luck ran out somewhere around "state senate," which was conveniently where all the names began to float around in an unrecognizable muddle before me. I struggled to remember who was who. Which guy stood for what. I started wondering about definitions, like what it means to be a Connecticut Libertarian. All the while, The Boss pulled my hair and threated to flip switches. Patience drained out of me. She wiggled. She kicked me in the kidneys. I couldn't remember for the life of me anyone's stance on the issues. "I don't know what to do!" I said to myself and The Boss.

"I think the woman in the first booth needs help," the only male poll worker in the place shouted out.

A different, more placid voice was suddenly right outside my metal cube. "Can I help you, dear?"

"Oh, no, thanks!" I said awkwardly, shifting The Boss's weight on my hip. "I was talking to my daughter."

Everyone laughed. I cringed. Then there was that male voice again, either jovial or gruff: "Looks like someone needs to get their hearing aid checked!"

I felt like the school kid getting yelled at by the librarian for speaking too loud in a sacred institution. Then I got indignant, wondering why I, one of fourteen residents under the age of thirty who came out to vote at that particular polling station, was being singled out by the octogenarian set with a God damn joke about, of all things, hearing aids.

The Boss must've sensed that I was at the end of my rope, because she quickly busied herself with her own shoelace. I flicked the last few switches with a huff and pulled the big, red lever.

I high-tailed it out of there without getting an "I Voted" sticker.

11 comments:

Whirlwind said...

At least you got to vote. I ventured over with my crew and was given a wait time of 1/2 hour. Um no thanks. I'll be heading back over in a bit to try my luck again.

I want to make sure Ivote for the right person and not who there little fingers pick.

toyfoto said...

With all the grandparent-types at the polls you'd think one of them would have entertained The Boss for a couple of minutes.

Anonymous said...

You can tell the Boss about this when she votes for the first time. Because I know you will raise voters!

Jene said...

i'm glad you're writing every day. i like hearing more about your real life, as it happens, rather than reading about the things you prepare to write about for the blog, if that makes any sense. :) ps- i have plane tickets for the afternoon of Dec. 20th! Whoo hoo!

Dionna said...

I planned ahead this year - as I went through the voter's guide and selected my candidates, I wrote the race and his or her name down. When I got to the booth today, I just pulled that paper right out of my wallet and started filling in circles with a dopey grin on my face. I almost felt like I was cheating . . .

ALI said...

love love love your blog, funny and intelligent, will definately be back! just to avoid confusion, my NoBloPoMo posts are here http://rnmom.spaces.live.com not on my blogger account.

T. said...

As a civic-duty geek myself, I am one of those keeners you see working the elections. (Because it's not enough for me to vote, I have to bore myself by sitting there for endless hours listening to people whine about which candidates a bigger loser..)I am surprised no one offered to give you a hand with the Boss.

I would have stopped and given the Octogenarian a piece of my very young mind as I left.

But I'm glad to hear you and the Boss survived her first trip to the polling station.

jen said...

ah, yes. voting w/ a two year old was really terrific. and it was in a library, so M ran wild pulling down books, which was embarrassing..but nothing was going to stop me from voting...not even book destruction.

nicole said...

Hi! Just spreading some NaBloPoMo cheer via the randomizer. You've been linked on my blog--cheers!

Anonymous said...

I have to say that in all the times I have voted (and I'd guess this is a city vs. country thing), I've never seen a single "I voted" sticker at my local polling place, but I have seen people who live in the city with them (plus the tv stations usually show someone wearing one at some point in the day).

Maureen said...

I too decided to vote with my little ones in tow. It went better than expected, but the older folks running the polling place didn't seem to have much sympathy for someone bringing their kids along. There were tables set up behind the booths so I stuck my little ones there with fake ballots that they worked on while I voted. The key is having your cheat sheet handy so you can quickly fill out you ballot and grab your sticker. My 3.5 y/o tried to stuff his ballot in the box and the workers got very upset.