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anticlimax - Diary of a Necromancer
Excuse me, I'm making perfect sense, you're just not keeping up
robling_t
robling_t
anticlimax
The Prequel's Progress: WP's count: 18764 -- met session target. Went out on Saturday and photographed some roofs, film should be back tomorrow...


So primary day has finally arrived, and I've already been out in the Driving Snow to meet my civic responsibility. Our polling place, despite a note on the front gate to the contrary, was where it always is, in the fieldhouse at the other end of our back alley. There's a blue roadway cone out on the walk with a notice pasted to it, "No electioneering beyond this point", which was somehow just adorable looking, at least at 6:30 in the freaking morning. Three local precincts (up from two the last few elections I've lived here) vote in the fieldhouse gymnasium, which is, well, a gymnasium, all basketball hoops and ominous ropes.

Our precinct checks in at the left side of the gymnasium. At 6:30 the election judges were already groaning about the things that have gone wrong so far -- so far one guy had spoiled not one but two ballots and the polls only open at 6... The tear-off pads of punchcard ballots were laid out in little stacks, one pad of Republican yellow, one pad of Green Party buff, one pad of nonpartisan white, and five or six pads of Democratic green, which the aforementioned troublemaker was going through at a rate of knots.

Out of sheer bloodymindedness I punched my punchcard for Howard Dean, not that it matters at this point but what the hell. Illinois's regs apparently specify that one also has to select the individual delegates to send to the convention -- punch six across four ballot-pages, which is dreadfully annoying but I suppose one could pick'n'mix for Sharpton and Kucinich if one were in a perverse mood. The other races on the ballot, mostly mid-term judge replacements, were a wonderful cross-section of ethnic diversity -- about 50% Irish or Polish surnames, but I also recall a Xochitl "So-She" someone-or-other reflecting the city's Mexican community, as well as one candidate with the delightful given name of Minerva in there somewhere. You just don't get this kind of choices out in the sticks. There's also a candidate for a judgeship, whose signs I was noticing last weekend, going by the name of "Michael J. (Yakov) Fox" -- one does have to be amused at the brazenness, real name or no. Four referenda as well, of the general character that the Administration are a wicked bunch of crooks who need a good smack upside the head.

I finished well ahead of Mum despite having had to wait for a booth with a Democratic ballot-booklet, and ended up stuck behind a Typical Voting Drama (I have yet to vote here without being delayed by some problem or other): the Hanging Chad Detector, which was messed-up for the occasion of the 2002 midterm election, was still messed-up in a suspiciously similar fashion, leading one to think that it hadn't got looked at for the intervening year and a half. Specifically, the override button was not working. Which was a problem, because the voter in front of me had consciously chosen not to vote in a race for which they didn't feel versed in the choices; therefore, the Hanging Chad Detector was doing its job and refusing the ballot -- and couldn't be told to go ahead and take it anyway. (Which may be a good thing sometimes, since there have been reports of override buttons being abused, but in this instance it was genuinely appropriate and sorely missed.) To compound the problem, said voter was hearing-impaired and had forgotten their hearing aid, and the already overwhelmed election judge was being slow to understand the voter's repeated explanations that they couldn't hear a word the judge was saying and needed the situation regarding provisional ballot disposal explained in writing. The situation was finally resolved, after a good five minutes, and I was able to feed ballot #6 for the morning into the Hanging Chad Detector, where it was slurped in, judged acceptable, and probably shredded to bits.

Mum's ballot was also acceptable, which was good, because she had taken so long to wade through the "vote for six" portion that she had had to take the ballot back out of the ballot-booklet to see how many she had already chosen, and she was running late for work. Considering that last election it had been she who discovered that the override button on the precinct's Hanging Chad Detector is broken, well, let's just say it could have been a lot worse...


And now I am going to play some Leftover Roulette and then go back to bed.

Tags:
feeling: all civic-y 'n stuff

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Comments
khavrinen From: khavrinen Date: March 17th, 2004 12:51 am (UTC) (permalink this entry)
Four referenda as well, of the general character that the Administration are a wicked bunch of crooks who need a good smack upside the head.

What, that requires referenda? I've always assumed that about all Administrations, across the board...
lcohen From: lcohen Date: March 18th, 2004 03:36 pm (UTC) (permalink this entry)
Out of sheer bloodymindedness I punched my punchcard for Howard Dean, not that it matters at this point but what the hell. Illinois's regs apparently specify that one also has to select the individual delegates to send to the convention -- punch six across four ballot-pages, which is dreadfully annoying but I suppose one could pick'n'mix for Sharpton and Kucinich if one were in a perverse mood.

i punched for kucinich and picked two kerry delegates, two dean delegates, and two kucinich delegates cause what the hell. i was much more serious in all the other races, including researching the judges.
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