maybe thump it a few times

When I showed up at my polling location to vote this morning, I was already a teensy bit annoyed that I had to essentially run a gauntlet of Allen and “vote yes” people (with one Webbie thrown in) before I could even get inside the building. I didn’t want to be rude – I think it’s good that people care enough to get involved with the process at any level – but I felt a tiny bit accosted and had to explain several times that I had already made up my mind and did not need any literature about how gay marriage endangers children.

I’m torn between good feelings when people make the time to go and vote and frustration at people who decide based on TV commercials or fliers at the polling place or who has better candy, you know? Yes, you should vote, but seriously, make an informed decision and don’t believe all the ads you see on TV. I’ve felt so saturated by ads lately that I’ve been tuning ALL of them out. Of course, I have never liked Allen and decided months ago to vote Webb, so who am I to say what’s best?

So yeah anyway, I got inside and gave them my ID and they asked me if I would vote on the electronic machine, explaining that this is all they’d be using next time around so it would be good to get used to it. They had all electronic touch-screen machines in the Democratic primary a few months ago so I’d already used one, but I figured it couldn’t hurt to do it again.

Right as I started to look at the screen, the machine broke. One of the poll workers fiddled with the cord and nudged it with his foot a bit, and I was feeling kind of insecure about having my vote count be dependent on some dude’s cord-nudging skills so I asked for a paper ballot and voted that way instead. The whole thing took longer than usual.

This morning I was all “ha ha, I broke the touch-screen with the sheer force of my awesomeness,” but then I’ve been reading an astonishing number of reports of crashing touch-screen machines today and that, coupled with the extremely sketchy robocalling and phonebanking over the past few days, has me feeling rather conspiracy theory about the whole thing right now.

I’m a pretty big fan of technology and I never thought I’d say I was relieved to have a bubble-sheet to fill in, but honestly, I kind of am. It was good enough for my SATs, after all.

In any case, please go vote today if you haven’t already. And if there are problems at your polling location, don’t let them deter you. It’s your right and your responsibility to vote.

Comments 10

  • I thought it was illegal to distribute campaign literature or stuff like that within a certain proximity of a polling place. That said, Webb is the obvious choice. Good on you.

  • I was wondering about that too. I think they got around it because they were far away from the actual doors, but you had to walk through them to get to the doors because of the layout of the school.

  • I didn’t get a “I Voted” sticker. :-(

  • Wow: The Allen – Webb match. That’s a pretty fierce contest to have to suffer through. Quite vocal and tense…though not nearly as awful, I think, as when Ollie North ran against Chuck Robb in the mid-90s. That mid-term election year (’94? Whoa. The Grinch’s Revolution) was just plain filthy.
    -cK

  • I didn’t get a sticker, either, so I made one myself. I wanted people to know. Also, I too did the Scantron vote – my reasonsing, similar to yours, is that it was good enough for every multiple choice test I took in high school.

  • It is illegal, but I bet they were the distance they were supposed to be. Remember at Staunton River they’d have duct taped lines on the sidewalk on both sides leading to the cafeteria? Those were the lines people had to stand behind.

  • We had the rolling-wheel-screen-machine that made a cranking noise when you flipped through the ballot. I wish the electronic machines would print out your ballot when you’re finished. That way you know for sure all the right votes went through.

  • thank god you voted today. i hope your side wins.

    also! here in oregon we all get our ballot mailed to us about two weeks before election day. we can mail them in or drop them in drop boxes al ovr the city. i kinda love it.

  • Pretty exciting day for Virginia.

  • virginia needs a good thumping right now; I mean, we’ve got to wait ’til Thanksgiving?! sheesh.

    good thing you voted, indeed.
    I’m peddling this photo around this morning; it’s made me smile:
    http://www.wonkette.com/politics/rick-santorum/rick-santorums-two-dozen-kids-hate-you-213305.php

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