Monday, November 07, 2016

election day.

I'm sharing 20 memories in honor of living in my house for 20 years. Here is #8. 

I love Election Day! I always pick out a special voting outfit - this year it is a Statue of Liberty skirt, black top, boots, and my favorite accessory: the "I Like Everyone" pin. 

I know that I have voted in every single presidential and general election since I was eligible to vote. 

The first presidential election I voted in was in 1980 and I was a freshman at Purdue. I can't swear that the polling place was in my dorm, but it very may well have been. It went off road that year and voted for John Anderson. I liked Jimmy Carter okay, but he didn't seem too exciting and I couldn't wrap my head around Ronald Reagan. Why I found Anderson exciting I don't know. In my defense I was 19 years old. 

This year I even accessorized the house - red, white, and blue lights across the house and red, white, and blue paper lanterns on the porch. 

I try to make sure that I'm as well informed as I can be. I've never been a straight ticket voter, I do my best to vote for the person that I think can do the best job. 

In the last 20 years either the presidential elections have gotten more exciting or I'm paying better attention. 

Today was my fifth time voting in a national election since I've lived at Chez Pez. Toss in the national primaries and "off year" elections and primaries, I've voted in basement of the church down the street with the red door than I have anywhere else. 

The church is only five blocks away and I swear each time that I'm going to walk to vote. I've only managed to do that four times in the last 20 years. I'm usually cutting it too close to when I need to be on the road for work so I drive. 

This morning I arrived at 7:15 which was perfect timing. The long line from the 6:00 am folks was over and I breezed right in. The great thing about living in one place so long is that everyone knows your name. Don't worry - I still had to show my identification. 

Last week when Tammy asked if I could watch the twins on Election Night my knee-jerk reaction was "no way!" There were results to watch, whiskey to drink, and possibly champagne to pop. 

Then I realized that the company of two eight-year olds would be the best company for the evening. Not to get all sappy and stuff but I'm counting on that generation for a lot of things. 

Eight years ago I'd been to a watch party in the neighborhood where the hosts cleverly had maps and crayons so we could color in the states as they declared who won each state. By the way, I totally stole Kirsten's idea this year...anyway.....

2008's map
I met up with Tammy at the Red Key on my way home. She was coming back to the neighborhood after being with the twins at the NICU  As Tammy and I watched the returns on the slightly fuzzy television at the bar where talking politics is frowned upon she told me how excited she was that her kids would grow up in a time where having an African-American president was a reality. 

I wondered if we'd ever see a woman on the ballot in our lifetime. Tammy was confident that we would and she was right. 

2016 map. 

I brought maps and crayons and candy for the kids thinking we'd color in the states and watch the returns. Art, geography, math, and civics all with one page and two crayons. 

Exciting, right? 

I quickly realized I was out of touch with the eight year-old citizens of my district.  

I couldn't compete with Madeline and games. But that was okay. We did talk about the electoral college and who was winning and what the governor and senators do and such. 

As I type we're still not sure who will be the next president. I do know that no matter who wins, hearing the news with a stinky pair of little feet on my lap and a snoring kiddo attached to them gives me hope. 

p.s. - I said this four years ago and I still believe it. 

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