Rockin’ the Vote

Voting in Brooklyn provided no celebrity sitings, no long lines, and no drama but it did help me feel like a real member of this country and that was a nice, grown-up, responsible feeling. I was pleased to see the sizable crowd spilling out onto the sidewalk was an accurate sampling of my South Williamsburg neighborhood-young, scruffy, artso types (“Hey! There’s the singer for Les Savy Fav.”) and Puerto Rican moms and pops. The volunteers spoke English and Spanish and dispatched everyone to their respective district booths fairly efficiently. Because I knew one of the volunteers, she’s done a great job with my taxes for the past two years at the local HR Block and I wish I could remember her name, she sent me to my booth without checking my ID. That made me feel like a real member of this crazy little community. There was an old guy in a wheelchair ahead of me in the booth and a volunteer was in there helping him. Eventually he came out all smiles, like, “Hey, I did it!” I have a soft spot for old guys so I gave him a smile and a thumbs up. Once I got into the booth I couldn’t believe the weird, Jetson’s-like lever box that I had to do my voting with. “What is this, the Fifties?” I can’t imagine that it even worked, but I hope to Hell it did. It’s sort of bad, but I didn’t know anything about any of them except Kerry and Bush so I blindly voted for all the Senators and such. I hope that doesn’t backfire on me. Since then, I’ve been anticipating the count. I know Kerry’s going to win this state, but I hope, whoever wins, that my vote does really get counted. It’s nice to actually participate in this moment and I’d hate to think that that weird contraption might have broken down or something weird like that. But you know, it’s as if day-to-day, I can read the papers and form my opinions, and I certainly laugh at all of Will Ferrell’s Dubya impersonations, but until I got that 5 minutes in the lever booth, this country’s problems and potential didn’t actually, physically, touch me. I rocked it.

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