2008-11-03 - 9:01 a.m.
...red beans, white beans, blue beings...
It's a wet and miserable autumn morning in Vancouver. Susi's cold has recurred, K is starting to get it, and I'm still down with it. Yet K bravely hoovered the house this morning while I carried an overtired Susi (who woke repeatedly last night, unable to breathe through her nose). This is truly Funcouver weather's - ahem - finest, and our household has the mentality to match.
I voted about one month ago, and so I feel like I'm gliding into this election. My parents, on the other hand, are prepared. My stepfather has prepared a red bean chili and a white bean chili for their Missouri election party. They are hoping that their state's election results will make up the missing color to the US flag.
This election is so important to my stepfather. He is 74, and he views this as possibly the last major election that he will experience in his lifetime. For him, a political scientist of more than 50 years, the past 8 years have been the most corrupt than he has ever experienced in his lifetime. It is imperative that things change for the better.
While my parents were visiting, my stepfather would spend two hours every morning in front of the computer, analyzing the latest poll results - not just national polls, but polls for every major Senatorial and congressional district election as well. My stepfather would start to get nervous if he didn't get a regular poll fix...
K and I got hourly updates on the chances of a 60-40 sweep in the Senate. We knew every major breaking story. We watched the debates (via the internet) with popcorn and expert commentary from the political scientists.
My parents are my idea of patriots. They have both been educators their entire lives. They have taught students how to think, how to analyze, and how to improve the world and their country. They have been openly critical of their country, as all good citizens should be. They have volunteered for every major federal and local election since they have retired. I remember four years ago when my mother used her GIS skills to print out over 400 maps of Missouri voter registration information for an organization that would get out the vote. She also drove around 4 college students who flew in from Smith College to canvas for a Senate seat. I can see my 65-year-old mother driving around 4 co-eds with dreadlocks and nose-piercings and having the time of her life. This election, I overheard my mother saying hesitantly yet expectantly to my stepfather, "J, this election we might actually live in a blue state..." I think my parents truly believe in throwing their weight behind a democratic electoral system, and making it work properly. And I think that this is very cool.
Anyway, writing about my parents has made me feel a little bit more cheery. I will go throw a quick breakfast on the table before Susi wakes up. Again.
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...they are just words, Suzi... - 2011-08-29