Tuesday, November 4, 2008

We Vote...And We Wait

So, like an unprecedented number of other Americans, I voted today. I waited in line at my polling place, but not for very long. The man in front of me wore glasses and secured them to his head with a homemade glasses strap that consisted of a rope of various sizes and colors of rubber band. This made me cringe, as I have long-ish hair and would have rubber forever woven to my head if I tried something like that.

The woman behind me in line had a British accent. For a moment I wondered if the world had decided they could no longer trust us with our own elections. And then I wondered what had prompted her to become one of us.

I have voted at the same polling place for years. It has always been staffed by a gaggle of little old ladies and a couple of old men. This year, the usual crew was there- but so were several youngsters, twenty-somethings I would guess. It was really nice to see the new guard. There was also a noticeable increase in the number of younger voters, at least while I was standing there.

I didn't have any trouble with the voting machine. We have touch-screens here. You plug in a credit card type card and then use the touch screen. Then when you finalize your selections (vote) the machine spits out your card and you go deposit it in a box by the exit and pick up your "I Voted" sticker on your way out. Easy peazy.

So I did that- and then true to my word, I went and bought a nice bottle of wine. I picked a Saint M Riesling that I've enjoyed before. And now that polls are starting to close in many of the eastern states, I think it is time to break out the wine and settle into a cozy spot with my cross-stitch.

But, you know, no matter what the results are, I can honestly say that Obama's campaign, and Obama the man, have changed me for the better. And I think he has changed a lot of other people too. I think he re-introduced hope where it was flagging. He set a new tone- perhaps the most gentlemanly campaign in my memory (not perfect, of course, but certainly a breath of fresh air). And you know, I have noticed a change in the way people of color in my community carry themselves and interact with me. This bit by itself is solid gold, in my opinion. I love that Obama makes a point of making time for his family. I love the way he and Michelle interact. The man has raised the bar. 'Bout time.

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