Vote Or Die – The Goldie Family’s First Elections
Those were the first elections for me, my husband and my parents, as we got our citizenship in 2003, and my parents in 2002, so for us, there were a lot of new experiences. On top of it, we live in a swing state. No, scratch that – THE swing state! O-hi-o, baby! Can you imagine what fun it was?
No, you can’t. Let me tell you, in chronological order, starting with… let’s see, January of 2004.
January 5, 2004 – all of a sudden, every car is sporting a Bush or Kerry bumper sticker.
January 6, 2004 – I order bumper stickers from DaveBarry.com
February 20, 2004 – my “Dave Barry for President!” bumper sticker arrives in the mail.
September 30, 2004 – we watch the first round of debates.
October 1, 2004 – we go out of town for the weekend. The roads are closed because Kerry is in town.
October 3, 2004 – we return from the weekend trip. The roads are closed because Bush is in town.
We still have no clue who to vote for.
October 8, 2004 – we watch the second round of debates and make up our minds.
October 9, 2004 – my Dad gets a call from a friend. Friend advises Dad who to vote for and Dad agrees. It is not the guy that we chose. It’s the Other Guy. (I hope no one minds if I call the candidates “Our Guy” and “The Other Guy” from here on?) Things heat up in the Goldie household.
October 12, 2004 – my next door neighbors put up The Other Guy’s poster on their front lawn. Did I say “their front lawn”? I lied. They put it up right on the friggin border of our properties! I start planning revenge.
October 16, 2004 – I set a humongous pumpkin right next to the neighbors' poster, on our property. K9 comments, “A pumpkin! How sinister”.
October 17, 2004 – we visit our friends. The friends got The Other Guy bumper stickers for free at their work, and have no idea what to do with them. They are also voting for Our Guy. The stickers are passed out, I put one in my pocket, and toss it on the kitchen counter when we get home.
October 18, 2004 – when I come home from work, there is a new bumper sticker on my Dad’s car. Yep, the one from the kitchen counter. As soon as Mr. Goldie and I walk in, Dad starts a political discussion. Chaos ensues.
October 23, 2004 – it’s Saturday morning and Mr. Goldie and I are enjoying some together time. The together time is rudely interrupted by a doorbell, which we try to ignore. On the fifth ring, I open the door in my bathrobe, just to make whoever it is go away. It’s a woman with a teenage kid, representing Our Guy’s election campaign. The woman asks who I vote for. My spirit of rebellion wakes up and I proudly say, “This is a very personal question”, even though we are in actuality voting for Her Guy. I then proceed to say my good-byes and try to shut the door. The woman isn't letting me. I manage to finally close it on the fourth try. We spend the rest of the day hiding from the election campaign activists.
October 24, 2004 – I finally find what I’ve been looking for, in a dollar store. It’s two skull and bones posters that glow in the dark. I stick them in the ground on both sides of my pumpkin (right next to my neighbors' poster, remember).
October 28, 2004 – my neighbors have taken their poster down!!! Gee, I wonder why. I'm leaving my pumpkin and skulls on my lawn, because, you see, they are Halloween decorations.
October 29, 2004 – yet another political discussion with Dad. This time, he likens me and Mr. Goldie to the occupants of Nazi Germany. Is it just me or is it getting hot in here?
November 2, 2004 – I get a call from my users at 5AM and work on it for several hours, so I end up coming to work late. (Yes, I voted before coming to work). When I come in at 11, it doesn’t look like any work is getting done in the office. This continues for the rest of the day.
November 3, 2004 – I don’t care who won, I’m just glad that it’s over.
November 4, 2004 – everybody’s ripping on our state. Why? What’d we do?
November 5, 2004 – I have the first (and possibly last) normal human conversation with K9’s principal, because, as it turns out, we had both voted for the same guy and our guy lost. (There, I said it). Group hug?
November 10, 2004 – hey, I kinda miss the election campaign. I miss the show and the hype and even the annoying strangers coming to my door. It was a major pain in the rear, but at the same time… it was fun! A sick and twisted kind of fun, but fun nonetheless. Well, we’ll do it again in 2008, but this time with two teenagers in the house. I have a feeling the next one is going to be even better!