Wednesday, March 07, 2012

If I don't write to empty my mind, I go mad. ~ Lord Byron

Another Super Tuesday is history, thank goodness! The political campaign season in the United States is entirely too long, consumes far too much energy and resources (read: money), and does little to endear any of the narcissistic candidates to an increasingly cynical public.

IMHO, of course. I know there are those who revel in the process.

As I have for every election the four years, yesterday I worked the polls. I’m one of those largely thankless temp workers brought in by the Board of Elections to man the precinct tables, checking IDs, distributing ballots and the lovely “I Voted!” stickers, and generally ensuring the system works.

Most of the voters we meet in the course of our very long (up to 15-hour) day are patient and friendly. A very small handful do take time to thank us for our service. It’s always an interesting day, and since I’m a regular in my assigned precinct, I’m learning names and faces of my fellow townsfolk. It’s a joy watching the senior citizens arrive from Friends Care Center, independent, determined and so very proud to cast their vote in person as they have for untold decades. We have a few homeschooling families who use Election Day as a practical civics lesson; it’s an honor to be a part of their educational process. Equally joyful are the teenagers voting in their first election. Their smiles are often outshone by the proud parents leading them through the maze.

Unfortunately, as with any public encounter, there are one or two individuals who seem to delight in mucking up the works. One gentleman in particular always arrives at our precinct table in a belligerent, confrontational mood and it generally goes downhill from there. He’s pushy, rude, insulting to every one of us who try to figure out his always-shifting demands, and generally an unpleasant person all around. I dread his appearance every Election Day, and am only too happy to hand him off to the presiding judge. I don’t have the patience for his bullying, and as a quasi-public servant for the day, I can’t speak my mind and tell him to take a hike.

As is customary in my musings, I try to connect my posts to my writing life. This week is a bit more challenging. All I took away from Super Tuesday 2012 was a sense of relief that it was over, a borderline migraine, and fodder for this blog. Using writing as my therapy will have to be connection enough.

Does writing help you process difficult situations?


  1. Well rounded blog about the voting scene from the other side of the table. As always, you enlighten me. As for writing helping me process difficult situations, I'd have to say yes, in ways. If nothing more, it is an escape into someone else's misery. Funny. sorta

  2. I guess that means I could never be a "quasi-public servant", because I would be unable to refrain from telling Mr. Obstinate exactly where he could put his vote! :)


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