I meant to write this post earlier, but I got hit by a wave of tiredness. Yes, I know part of the reason for the tiredness is me being a toolbag and playing Uno until 3 in the morning last night. Not smart at all.
I just had to write about our experience voting because it was awesome. I know to most people, they would read this and go “Yeah? So what!” But to us, it was pretty special.
Steve and I headed off down to the high school that I’d talked about scoping out. For the most part, the sidewalks were perfect. We only had to walk through one part where there was only sand. The funniest thing that happened to us happened when we got there. Trekker said we were at the school, so I turned down a driveway and told Trix to find inside. What she found looked like a strange door, but what do I know? Suddenly a voice said “No! You can’t come into the auto shop!” Oh! Oops. Is this even the high school? It was, we were just at the auto shop. The guy first started pointing, but then told us to walk up and make a left. We made a left too soon, and he saw us, and sent a student to rescue us. Oops.
But once we got to the polling station, everything went smoother…except the polling folks said we were the first people they’d had who requested the audio voting. But they were very cool about it and looked up in their manuals how exactly they were supposed to do that. They scared the bejeebers out of Steve though, because as they were taking me over to vote, they kept insisting that they needed Steve to stay right there, while they conferred with each other and leafed through the manual. He was wondering when the handcuffs were going to come out, or something.
We still don’t know why they wanted him to stay right there, but once they figured out the audio, things went perfectly. The woman kept asking us if we wanted to do this because it would take 35-40 minutes for each of us. That turned out to be a pile of hooey, because we each did it in about 10 or 15 minutes. But that’s what they were trained was the time it would take, so you can’t blame them for saying that.
I swear that last time we pressed the thumb switch, the button was somewhat more responsive, and made a little click along with the beep. This time, you had to push, push, pushpushpush on the button. But I don’t care. I voted, I confirmed, I did it myself, I don’t care if I had to smash the button a little. I think anyone with dexterity issues could have managed. It just felt a little like I was playing space-invaders, because I felt I had to rapid fire push on it.
One observation I made while I was playing my little voting video game. My god a lot of people didn’t know how to properly fill out their ballots. How it works if you mark your x in a conventional way is you make your mark with the marker they provide, and then they scan your ballot into the machine. This year, the machine has been programmed with a second chance option that will warn you if you’ve voted for too many candidates, not enough of them, or if there’s a mark it can’t understand. Nearly everyone who approached the machine to have their ballots scanned while I was voting set off the error beeps.
Some people said they intentionally didn’t vote for schoolboard trustees, for example. But when some people figured out they could have voted for more people, and actually didn’t know that was possible, and the clerk asked them if they’d like to complete their ballot, they said “na, that’s ok.” Excuse me? You’re choosing to under-exercise your right to vote just out of sheer laziness? Weird.
It’s getting to be a smaller and smaller world. I knew two of the people who were working the polling station. One works at the River Run Centre, and one was my very first psych prof, who seemed like a very scary man, but who ended up to be super good and accommodating to me. He still says hello to me on the street.
So we voted, and it’s looking like Ray Mitchell’s getting quite a few votes. I’m not sure if everything’s in, but Ray, you have quite a following.
So…did you vote? I hope so.