I’ve had some trouble with voting this year.
Ben and I both get mail-in ballots. What usually happens is that we get them, they sit around the house for a while, and then at the last minute we vote. We didn’t quite wait until the last minute this time, but almost.
As you may know, Ben rescued a Rottweiler who had been abandoned. She’s relevant to my voting story because Ben decided it would be a good idea to vote last Thursday evening. It was probably not wise for me to go along with this plan for two reasons: (1) we were supposed to take the Rottweiler to a foster home on Friday morning and I decided pretty much minutes before Ben said, “Hey, let’s vote” or whatever he said that the Rottweiler might be the best dog in the world and although with two other dogs, four cats, and oh yeah a baby, a Rottweiler was the last thing in the world we could possibly need but you know how I am and there might have been crying involved; and (2) I had been drinking.
Even so, I sat across our makeshift kitchen island from Ben, spread out my ballot, grabbed a pen, and started voting like hell for the first candidate listed on the ballot. It turned out the first candidate listed on the ballot is Ken Buck. I did not wish to vote for Ken Buck, who I think qualifies as a right-wing wingnut. In fact, I’d rather strip naked, cover myself in meat, hike deep into the mountains alone, and wait for bears (sorry, I’ve already used this line but I can’t think of another adequate way to convey how little I want to vote for Ken Buck without resorting to poking out eyes and other shit you’ve heard more than once before). (For the record, I’m no big fan of the person I meant to vote for, Michael Bennet, but at least voting for him wouldn’t make me want to commit hari bari or whatever you’d call that.)
Of course, I used pen. That meant I had to get a replacement ballot, because you can’t just cross out your mistake or write “Shit! WTF?” with an arrow pointing to your accidental vote for Ken Buck. Of course, because I waited until days before the election, I couldn’t request a new ballot by mail. So that meant I had to actually go somewhere in person to get a replacement ballot. (For the record, I’m pretty terrible at doing anything that needs to be done in person, and most other things, too.)
I thought it would be a good idea to go get a replacement ballot on Friday morning, but put it off. I thought it would be a similarly good idea to go get a replacement ballot on Monday morning, but put it off. That left today. To make sure I didn’t flake (not that I would, but you know), I also tasked myself with the responsibility of dropping off Ben’s perfectly completed, error-free ballot.
Soren and I walked to the Blair-Caldwell Library, where he removed his socks as many times as possible and ate my wallet. I got to sit in the naughty-people line with some other folks who allegedly never received their mail-in ballots. I freely admitted that I screwed up my ballot (technical voterly official term = spoiled). Eventually, I got a fresh, new ballot and, although I prefer pen, a pencil. dun dun dun dun (<– That’s supposed to signify music not unlike what you’d hear when someone is about to do something stupid on The Amazing Race.)
I got through the first side of the ballot just fine. Then I flipped it over and voted the hell out of the first row of really exciting stuff about gambling and the seat of government. Then I started voting like hell for Amendments 60 and 61. Wait. I’d rather strip naked, cover myself in meat, hike deep into the mountains alone, and wait for bears — yeah, yeah, you’ve heard this multiple times before. In short, I didn’t want to vote for Amendments 60 and 61.
The pencil I was using to vote didn’t have an eraser. dun dun dun dun According to the ballot, you’re not even supposed to erase mistakes. Shit. Shamefully, I made my way back to the cramped voting room (complete with big, giant jogging stroller, because apparently now I am one of those people, in addition to all my other annoying qualities). It looked like I had to wait in the naughty-people line (which was longer now, of course) again. Thankfully, the boss of the naughty-people line took pity on me and offered me the best thing I’ve ever seen in my life — an eraser. Sure the ballot says not to use an eraser, but I’m nothing if not a rule-breaker. So I erased the hell out of those erroneous “yes” votes and voted “no” for everything left on the ballot, except the weird extraterrestrial thing, which I totally thought was a joke made up by one of my smartass friends on Facebook but actually is real, which I just skipped because holy fuck, I’ve had enough of this voting shit and really can’t take a position for or against this proposed method of dealing with extraterrestrials and their vehicles. No really, this is what it says:
Shall the voters for the City and County of Denver adopt an Initiated Ordinance to require the creation of an extraterrestrial affairs commission to help ensure the health, safety, and cultural awareness of Denver residents and visitors in relation to potential encounters or interactions with extraterrestrial intelligent beings or their vehicles, and fund such commission from grants, gifts and donations?
Oh holy hell. I think it’s time for me to go have a beer with my Rottweiler.